|P U N J A B||
Sunday, September 6, 1998
No move to
public complaints disposed of
on gas pipeline unit at 'final' stage
Congress, CPI misinforming people: Badal
BATHINDA, Sept 5 Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal today urged the Centre to sort out all pending issues of Punjab at the earliest.
plan to focus
dealing in fake currency busted
Bar council action stayed
judge visits Burail jail
paddy purchase centres set up
sought for redressal of complaints
safari to motivate youth
15 crore released for completion of roads
Mandal seeks removal of ST post
Netaji conference from September 26
No move to replace
AMRITSAR, Sept 5 The BJP chief, Mr Kushabhau Thakre said here today that the party high command had no plans either to replace the Rajasthan Chief Minister, Mr Bhairon Singh Shekhawat, or dismiss the Bihar Government.
"It is to be left to the people of the state to keep him or remove him (Mr Shekhawat) in the coming Vidhan Sabha elections, but the party will not replace him", he said talking to mediapersons before inaugurating a two-day meeting of the national working committee of the Bharatiya Janata Yuva Morcha here.
Mr Thakre ruled out the dismissal of the Rabri Devi government in Bihar. The BJP government would not impose Article 356 on any state as it was the right of the people to change the government, he emphasised.
He, however, said the situation in Bihar was "explosive and it demanded removal of the government there but the Centre would not make use of Article 356".Mr Thakre criticised the previous Congress government which, he said, had "mortgaged India's resources to powerful western countries" by signing the GATT.
The BJP was committed to self-reliance and the "swadeshi" doctrine on the attempt by the USA to deny India the latest technology, including super computers and its pressure on Russia to snap defence ties with India, he categorically stated that India would "adjust" to these sanctions and emerge a stronger nation.
Blaming the economic policies of the Congress and foreign agencies like the World Bank and the IMF for the spurt in the prices of essential commodities, he said the BJP-led coalition government would be able to check the price rise within the next few months.
On the criticism of the BJP government by Congress president Sonia Gandhi at Pachmarhi yesterday, Mr Thakre said "her certificate" was not required by the Atal Behari Vajpayee government, which had achieved a lot during its five-month rule.
He said India was forced to conduct the nuclear tests due to the offensive postures of Pakistan and China. He pointed out that the Indian forces would be equipped with the most modern weapons. It is our desire to have peaceful and friendly relations with all neighbours, but not at the cost of the country's sovereignty".
Mr Thakre said the Budget presented by the BJP had given a thrust to the development of infrastructure which had remained neglected for many years. The success achieved through the subscription of Resurgent India Bonds by the NRIs showed that the BJP-led government's economic policy was in the right direction. "The faith of non-resident Indians in the country's future is unshakeable."
Mr Thakre said the terrorist problem in Jammu and Kashmir would be solved soon. The local population had stopped harbouring militants and was fed up with the killing of innocent persons by mercenaries.
The state of Kashmir would soon bounce back to normalcy and the economy would be back on rails as a large number of tourists had started visiting the valley, he added.
Militancy in north-eastern states had been contained to a great extent and negotiations were on with different groups to bring them back into the national mainstream.
Congress, CPI misinforming people:
BATHINDA, Sept 5 Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal today urged the Centre to sort out all pending issues of Punjab at the earliest.
Speaking after the foundation stone-laying ceremony of Rs 300 crore Gujarat Ambuja cement plant here, he said that the centre should ensure exclusive right to Punjab over its river waters, transfer of Punjabi-speaking areas and Chandigarh to Punjab which had been denied to the state by the previous Congress governments at the centre.
He said that river waters had been taken away from the state and given to other states ignoring the interests of Punjab. Similarly, Chandigarh was built as capital for Punjab but the state was still fighting to get it.
Making a scathing attack on the previous Congress governments at the Centre as well as of the Punjab state, Mr Badal alleged that the Congress party had done only one thing in the country and that was "divide and rule". The Congress always had divided people along different lines for perpetuating its "misrule" in the country.
The Chief Minister alleged that innocent people killed in Punjab during terrorism were never compensated for the previous Congress government.
Dubbing PPCC, President, Mr Amarinder Singh as "bhagora" (deserter) from the Akali Dal, Mr Badal said that people could well judge the fate of the Congress when a "bhagora" was its state president.
The Chief Minister alleged that Congress and CPI leaders were misguiding the people by resorting to dharnas on petty issues but these parties never fought for the cause of Punjab.
The Chief Minister advised the farmers to change the wheat-paddy rotation pattern in the state and adopt other profitable cropping pattern. He said that if the farmers wanted to come out of economic crises they should go in for agriculture-allied activities. He warned that if the farmers did not shift focus from growing paddy they would be in trouble in the coming years.
He alleged that farmers were facing severe economic crises due to anti-farmer policies of the previous Congress governments.
He said that the Punjab government was extending equal facilities to farmers, employees, traders and rural and urban people.
He said that by bringing Ms Sonia Gandhi into politics, the Congress could not come into power at the Centre or any state of the country. The exercise was only the "old wine in new bottle", he quipped.
Mr Badal appealed to people to contribute their mite in building roads and for creating other infrastructure in the state. He said the current year was being celebrated as the year of development.
He said that the Bathinda-Chandigarh road had been designated as national highway and four other major roads of Punjab were being four-laned. Power plants were being set up in the state keeping in view the increase in demand for power due to coming up of the big industrial projects in the state.
He announced that any industrial house which would set up a cement plant based on fly ash would be given certain concessions by the state government.
Mr Suresh Neotia,
Chairman, Gujarat Ambuja Limited, Mr Sukhbir Singh Badal,
Union Industry Minister, Mr Balwinder Singh Bhunder and
Mr Chitan Singh Samao (MP), Mr Chiranji Lal Garg, Mr
Sucha Singh Lengah, Mr Tota Singh, Mr Gurdev Singh Badal
(all ministers), Mr Manpreet Badal, Mr Balbir Singh and
Mr Makhan Singh (all MLAs) were present on the occasion.
SGPC building 'niwas' for
ANANDPUR SAHIB (Ropar): More than 40 lakh pilgrims are expected to converge on this city on the occasion of the tercentenary celebrations of the birth of Khalsa in April,1999.
Steps are being taken by the religious organisations and the authorities concerned to accommodate such a large rush of devotees. With this end in view, the SGPC is constructing a 300-room building near Takht Sri Keshgarh Sahib. The SGPC handed over "kar seva" for this project to Jathedar Baba Harbans Singhji Delhiwale in December last year.
As much as 50 per cent work on this 300-room Sri Guru Teg Bahadur Sahib Niwas has been completed by now. It is slated to be completed by March next year. After completion, the niwas will be handed over to the SGPC for use by pilgrims.
The niwas building, besides the ground floor, will have three storeys. Each floor will have 72 rooms with attached bathrooms-cum-latrines. Besides, each floor will have 20 bathrooms-cum-latrines. Provision for two lifts has also been made in the building, according to Baba Joga Singh, a sewak of Baba Harbans Singh.
Tourism plan to focus on
ROPAR, Sept 5 Privatisation and industry status for tourism are likely to be the salient features of the new Punjab tourism policy which is going to be approved by the Punjab Cabinet soon.
This was stated by Ms Jagir Kaur, Minister for Tourism and Cultural Affairs, Punjab, while addressing a press conference here yesterday after the inauguration of a fast food restaurant of the Punjab Tourism Development Corporation (PTDC).
Ms Jagir Kaur said the tourism policy had already been sent by her ministry to the Punjab Cabinet for approval.
The minister said no employee of the (PTDC) would be retrenched after the privatisation, as her ministry had already intimated the Punjab Chief Minister, Mr Parkash Singh Badal, to adjust the employees of the Tourism Department in other departments.
Ms Jagir Kaur said all tourist centres in the state could be privatised for providing employment to people and to meet losses.
The minister also said that the central government had sanctioned Rs 14 crore to promote facilities to develop Anandpur Sahib as a tourist centre.
Ms Vini Mahajan, Managing Director, (PTDC) said Punjab had never had its tourism policy in the past. This would be the first time when Punjab would follow its own policy, as earlier it had been adopting the policy of the central government, she added.
150 public complaints disposed
GURDASPUR, Sept 5 More than 3000 persons participated in a khula darbar held yesterday at Kot Todarmal, 22 km from here, to redress the grievances of the people at their doorsteps.
Mr Sewa Singh Sekhwan, state Minister for Public Relations and Rehabilitation, presided over the function. District officials, including Mr S.K. Sandhu, Deputy Commissioner, and Mr Lok Nath Angara, SSP, Batala police district, were present.
A mutation camp was also held for registering 30-day-old mutations lying with revenue officials. As many as 92 mutations were registered.
As many as 150 public complaints were disposed of on the spot and 40 were sent to the departments concerned with specific instructions to settle them within a week.
The minister distributed Rs 5100 each to 19 beneficiaries under the shagun scheme and a tool kit each to 62 carpenters.
Mr Sekhwan said Rs 20 crore had been earmarked for the shagun scheme and Rs 120 crore for the implementation of the old-age pension scheme during the current year in the state. The share of this district under the shagun scheme came to Rs 1.43 crore and under the old-age pension scheme it was Rs 7.5 crore.
As many as 115 procurement centres for the procurement of paddy had been opened in this district. Procurement of paddy by government agencies would start on September 15.
BJP, SAD failed nation: Wadala
JALANDHAR, Sept 5 Mr Kuldeep Singh Wadala, president, Akali Dal (Democratic), said here today that the BJP, its allies, and the Congress had failed the nation while the need of the hour was a third front and his party would support the Rashtriya Loktantrik Morcha.
Addressing a press conference here today, Mr Wadala lashed out at the failure of the state government and the central government on the law and order front, providing essential commodities at reasonable price and improving the infrastructure such as roads, schools, hospitals etc, he said that the state was passing through turbulent times and the gangs of "kale kachchhe wale" were looting villages and the police had failed to arrest them.
Blaming the BJP for isolating the country on the issue of nuclear tests, he said that the Kashmir issue could never be solved by the BJP and the international forum, the UNO would get of an opportunity to intervene but this move also was not welcome by the BJP which was costing the nation dearly in terms of loss of human life and money.
Accusing the Akali Dal (Badal) of not raising the long-pending demands of Punjab such as transfer of Chandigarh, river waters dispute, transfer of Punjabi speaking areas, he said that the BJP had sidelined its alliance partner. On the issue of Udham Singh Nagar he said only Mr Mulayam Singh Yadav had come against its merger into Uttaranchal, while the stand by Mr Badal has just been an eye-wash.
He said that the Akali Dal
(democratic) along with other minority parties in the
state such as the Muslim Front, Christians, and other
groups would be holding a conference in October which
would be addressed by Mr Mulayam Singh Yadav, at
Jalandhar or Adampur, while answering a question on the
Peoples' Commission. He lamented that the BJP was guilty
of protecting the killers of the minorities. He accused
Mr Advani to scuttle the Srikrishna report.
Talks on gas pipeline unit at
BATHINDA, Sept 5 Mr Sukhbir Singh Badal, Union Industry Minister, today said the Punjab Government was making efforts to get clearance for the Kandla-Bathinda gas pipeline project from the Centre.
Talking to mediapersons, he said talks between the Punjab Government and the Centre on the matter were at the final stage.
Mr Sukhbir Singh said the need for gas pipelines had been felt as big industrial units were coming up in the state and gas was required to set up gas-based power plants.
He said some NRIs were
being motivated to set up units in joint venture with
other business houses of the country. He said a Rs 70
crore food processing unit was in the pipeline. This unit
was being set up by an NRI.
manch assails BJP, Congress
LUDHIANA, Sept 5
The Sikh Vichar Manch (SVM) has criticised the BJP, the
Congress and the Communists for seeking a ban on the
People's Commission headed by Justice D.S. Tiwatia (retd)
which has started probing the cases of alleged torture
and killing of Sikhs during the past decade and a half.
GURDASPUR, Sept 5 More than 500 registered medical practitioners held a rally at Nehru Park here yesterday to press the government to allow those persons to do medical practice who had obtained requisite certificate from outside Punjab.
Mr Ramesh Kumar Bali, general secretary of the Registered Medical Practitioners Association of Punjab, while addressing a rally said if its demand was not accepted, the members of the association would seek the help of fraternity organisations to gherao the Chief Minister at public meetings in Punjab.
HC judge visits Burail jail
CHANDIGARH, Sept 5 Mr Justice H.S. Brar of the Punjab and Haryana High Court today went on an inspection visit to Model Jail, Burail, here.
He went round the jail premises, inspected the jail office and jail factory. Mr Justice Brar also met all 411 inmates and gave directives to the jail supervisory staff to provide proper treatment to sick inmates. In case of serious ailments, he wanted the inmates to be referred to the PGI or any other referral hospital.
He enquired from inmates about the quality and quantity of food served to them besides hearing their personal grievances, complaints and suggestions.
Gang dealing in fake currency
LUDHIANA, Sept 5 The police has smashed an interstate gang dealing in counterfeit currency notes said Mr Dinkar Gupta, SSP at a press conference here today. The SSP said that the police had arrested Mohinder Pal of Nawanshahr and Devinder Jain, a local businessman and recovered fake currency notes worth Rs 2500 from Mohinder Pal and worth Rs 24900 from the factory of Jain.
The seized currency was in the denomination of Rs 500, Rs 100 and Rs 50. The notes seized looked like a photo copy, although it had watermark and impression of security thread. Numbers on all notes seized were different and it could not be made out that it was fake currency. However, the two main accused and the local kingpins of the gang Dinesh Khanna and Kasturi Lal Dhir are absconding.
During interrogation, the two arrested persons revealed that the gang was active since 1993 under Kasturi Lal and Dinesh Kumar who had links with miscreants in Patna, Delhi and Bombay.
The modus operandi of this
gang was to lure the person with a deal to get three
times the counterfeit currency for genuine money. Then,
they would take these people to Patna and introduce them
to their bosses in Patna who clinched the deal. The SSP,
disclosed that further investigations in the case were in
progress. Earlier, Mr P.S. Sandhu, DIG (Ludhiana Range),
at the press conference, revealed that a meeting of all
police officials in the city, up to SHO-level was held
where discussions were held to improve policing with
emphasis on detection and prevention of crime.
to be built for SCs
FATEHGARH SAHIB, Sept 5 As many as 220 houseless Scheduled Castes persons would be provided houses at a cost of Rs 1.25 crore and Rs 75 lakh would be spent on the shagun scheme to benefit 1235 families in the district.
This was stated by Mr Sujan Singh, MLA and Chairman of the Legislative Assembly Committee for the benefit of Scheduled Castes (SCs) in the state, while recently addressing a meeting of district officials to review the welfare schemes for the SCs.
Punjab Bar council action stayed
CHANDIGARH, Sept 5 The disciplinary committee of the Bar Council of India has stayed the operation of the Bar Council of Punjab and Haryana suspending the licence of Mr Gorakh Nath, a lawyer of the Punjab and Haryana High Court, for a period of two years.
The order was passed by the Bar Council of India on an appeal that Mr Gorakh Nath had filed.
The order of the
disciplinary committee of the Bar Council, inter alia,
said: "The operation of the impugned order dated
August 30, 1998, passed by D.C. VII of the Bar Council of
the Punjab and Haryana is hereby stayed till the final
disposal of the appeal."
for students held
AMRITSAR, Sept 5 The Indian Academy of Fine Arts here organised a three-day painting workshop for the postgraduate students of fine arts from various colleges of the state.
The president of the academy, Mr Mohinderjit Singh, told newsmen here today that the workshop was attended by over 13 students. They were addressed by top artists, including Prof Neeta Mohindera and Mr K.L. Gambhir, on the history of art in India.
New paddy purchase centres set
FAZILKA, Sept 5 Dr Makhan Singh, District Food and Supply Controller, Ferozepore, while talking to mediapersons last evening regarding arrangements made for the procurement of paddy in the district, said the number of purchasing centres had been increased from 167 to 187 this year.
While setting up the new purchase centres, special care had been taken to ensure that no farmer would have to cover a distance of more than 5 km for selling his paddy. To redress the problems of farmers a two-day meeting was being organised by the Deputy Commissioner, Ferozepore, from September 15.
District officials, representatives of purchasing agencies, commission agents and farmers would participate.
Paddy arrival had started in the Fazilka, Jalalabad, Guruharsahai, Talwandi, Kahnu, Dharamkot, Zira and Ferozepore markets. All procuring agencies had arranged for adequate number of gunny bags.
To ensure smooth
procurement operations, two control rooms one each
in offices of the Deputy Commissioner and District Food
and Supply Controller had been set up. These
control rooms would function round the clock. All
commission agents had been directed to install power
cleaners and farmers had been advised to bring paddy with
a moisture content of not more than 18 per cent.
Priority sought for redressal of
LUDHIANA, Sept 5 The Speaker of the Punjab Vidhan Sabha, Mr Charanjit Singh Atwal, has said that priority should be accorded to the redressal of complaints in the khula darbar being organised in all districts once a week under the directions of the Chief Minister, Mr Parkash Singh Badal.
Mr Atwal was addressing a gathering of sarpanches, panches and the public at Kumalkan, about 30 km from here. Around 150 complaints regarding different departments were presented on the occasion.
The Deputy Commissioner, Mr Arun Goel, called upon people to cooperate with the administration in getting their complaints redressed and urged them not to pay bribe to any official.
to be poll observer in MP
LUDHIANA, Sept 5 Mr Harnam Dass Johar, a former Punjab Minister, has been appointed AICC observer for the ensuing assembly elections in Madhya Pradesh.
assails Manjit Singh
AMRITSAR, Sept 5 The Punjab Human Rights Organisation (PHRO) has held Prof Manjit Singh, Jathedar, Sri Kesgarh Sahib, responsible for the ongoing controversy among the Jathedars on the issue of "Guru ka Langar".
In a statement issued here
yesterday, Mr Kirpal Singh, Deputy Chairman of the PHRO
said Prof Manjit Singh had encouraged Canadian Sikhs to
indulge in infighting while implementing the hukamnama.
By doing this, he had tried to denigrate the Akal Takhat.
Cycle safari to motivate youth
AMRITSAR, Sept 5 With the aim to foster the spirit of adventure, render assistance to ex-servicemen and war widows and motivate youth to join the Army, a cycle safari of a Field Regiment consisting of 14 persons and headed by Lt Ravi Kant has started from Ferozepore.
The safari will cover a distance of 500 km through the rural areas of Punjab in 12 days. It will pass through Batala, Gurdaspur, Pathankot, Unchi Basi, Hoshiarpur, Jalandhar, Kapurthala and Moga and will return to Ferozepore on September 15.
PSEB union given assurance
PATIALA, Sept 5 The Punjab State Electricity Board Karamchari Dal, president, Mr Hari Singh Tohra, said here yesterday that the Board Administrative Member, Mr Baldev Singh Mann, had assured a delegation of the Dal that its main demands would be accepted soon.
Mr Tohra said Mr Mann had given an assurance that the employees would get promotion after four, nine and 14 years.
The Dal claimed that Mr
Mann had told the delegation that the services of those
who had completed five years as daily wagers would be
regularised. Besides this, it had been agreed that the
arrears of employees would be given within two months,
posts of draftsmen would not be abolished, posts of bill
distributors would be increased and that electricity
bills would be supplied 15 days in advance to the
15 crore released
for completion of roads
ROPAR, Sept 5 The state government has released funds to the tune of Rs 15 crore for the completion of roads and bridges in the district.
This was stated here yesterday by the Deputy Commissioner K.S. Sidhu.
He said the Chief
Minister, Mr Parkash Singh Badal, had ordered the
completion of ongoing projects of roads and bridges by
December 15 in preparation for the tercentenary
celebrations of the birth of Khalsa at Anandpur Sahib.
Beopar Mandal seeks removal of ST
LUDHIANA, Sept 5 The Punjab Pradesh Beopar Mandal has urged the state government to remove the sales tax post near Phillaur. Mr Jagmohan Sharma, president of the mandal, has threatened to stage a protest dharna near this post on September 9 if it is not removed.
This decision comes in the wake of a clash between sales tax officials and traders here on Thursday.
The mandal has alleged
that the staff at the post had demanded Rs 5,000 from a
trader who paid the amount. But a wordy duel ensued when
the trader was allegedly told to collect a receipt for Rs
500 from the office the next day. They are also reported
to have come to blows. The mandal is also demanding the
arrest of the officials involved in the incident.
All-India Netaji conference from
ROPAR, Sept 5 The Fourth All-India Netaji Conference is being organised by the Netaji Research Foundation here on September 26 and 27.
Addressing a press conference here last evening, Mr V.P. Singh, chairman of the foundation, said from various aspects it would be a historical conference because the decisions, likely to be taken in the conference, would have long-term effects on the history of the country.
He said the conference would be inaugurated by Mr Deb Bratta Biswas, MP and general secretary of the All-India Forward Bloc. Mr Pradip Bose and Mr Subrata Bose, nephews of Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose, along with some other members of their family besides scholars, authors, veteran INA officers and ardent followers of the Netaji from 14 states would participate in the conference.
Mr Saini said in the two-day conference, discussions on "Netaji's vision of independent India our duties", "Action plan to unfold the mystery surrounding Netaji's disappearance" and "The dreams of revolutionaries: their fulfilment" would be held.
The chairman also said a
kranti mela would also be organised on the concluding day
which would be dedicated to Shaheed-e-Azam Bhagat Singh,
as Bhagat Singh's birth anniversary fell on the same day.
Mr Kultar Singh, the youngest brother of Bhagat Singh,
would preside over the function.
for better medicare for villages
PATIALA, Sept 5 Punjab Public Works Department Minister Harmail Singh said today the government was committed to provide better facilities to people in rural areas of the state for which a special plan had been mooted.
Addressing a gathering in Hiyana Khurda village in Nabha subdivision after laying the foundation stone of outer roads of the village, he said the government would construct a 25-bed hospital in each block of the state to provide better health facilities to rural people. He said it would be made compulsory for doctors to serve in these hospitals for a period of not less than three years, adding that mobile vans would be provided in these hospitals.
Mr Harmail Singh advised the gram panchayats to work for the removal of encroachments on the link roads. He also disclosed that the government would give special grants to construct outer roads in the rural areas adding the roads would be completed in the current year only.
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