|Friday, January 21, 2000,
may delay woman's burial
Weed out graft, cut losses, PSEB
VHP for White Paper on
No headway in Sunil Jain case
Govt reclaims land after 32 years
BJP-INLD alliance stable: Modi
SAD to field candidates in Haryana
Parkash Singh Cong candidate for
Brar's plan to help Sharif doesn't
No move to bring back
YAD to project Congs
Jacob: optimum use of info-tech
Govt pledges to lepers hollow
Corporation told to furnish
Jeans, churidars upstage Patiala
Culture practices undergoing
Governor to unfurl flag at
Decision on new city
Power engineers start work to rule
Sanstha organises cultural nite
Pay hike for PNFC staff
Army honours war heroes, kin
Tota Singhs remarks
Stir against DD officials
Proclaimed offender arrested
Three booked in MTP case
Court remand for school clerk
Row may delay woman's burial
BHAGWANTPURA (Ropar), Jan 20 There may be delay in burying a Muslim woman, Lajo Begum (85), who died on the night of January 16 in this village, as her family is adamant to bury her in a disputed piece of land claimed to be a graveyard. On the other hand, the district administration is trying to persuade her family members to bury her near the grave of her husband in the village.
The disputed land is now in the physical possession of Mr Didar Singh and Mr Parmatama Singh, both residents of this village. Now the land falls within the 'Lal dora' (red line) of the village, while in the old revenue records i.e the 'Jamabandi' of 1932-33, the land is shown as a graveyard. The civil litigation between the family of the deceased and Mr Didar Singh over the land is pending in a local court.
When a team of mediapersons visited the village, about 8 km from Ropar, today, the body of Lajo Begum was lying on a cot surrounded by people. There was gloom in the house due to the delay in the burial and resentment over the alleged indifferent attitude of the administration towards the deceased's family.
When the mediapersons visited the disputed site, 'path' of Guru Granth Sahib was in progress. When a family member was asked about the holding of the 'path' there, he claimed it had been organised in connection with the engagement of a boy of the family. But he could not give details of the bhog ceremony.
There was no tension though the delay in the burial was the talk of the town.
Mr Hakim Ali, a son of the deceased, said his great grandfather was a chowkidar of the village prior to 1947 and now there were 17 members of this lone Muslim family in the village. He alleged that there had been a graveyard in the village which was now in the "illegal possession" of Didar Singh and others.
He declared that the body of his mother would not be buried at any other place except the original graveyard even if they had to wait indefinitely to bury her.
On the other hand, Mr Ajit Singh, a brother of Mr Didar Singh and Mr Sapinder Singh, said that their family originally belonged to Pakistan and after Partition, land was allotted to the family. He claimed that the land came within the 'lal dora' of the village after consolidation of holdings in 1952. Since then, there was no graveyard in the revenue records and now several houses stood on the land in question, he further claimed.
He said the family was in possession of the land in question and would not allow any burial there.
Mrs Pushpinder Kaur, the village Sarpanch, alleged that Mr Didar Singh had encroached upon the graveyard land. She claimed that even the elders of the village recognised the land as the graveyard.
Mr Gurinder Singh Grewal, Deputy Commissioner, Ropar, said this afternoon that the land had become the bone of contention and the case was sub-judice.
He said that the
district administration had deputed the SDM, Ropar, Mr
Amarjit Singh Shahi, to persuade family of the deceased
to perform the burial near the grave of her husband as
the case was sub-judice. He said that the panchayat was
ready to provide suitable land for the ceremony in the
AMRITSAR, Jan 20 The Punjab State Human Rights Commission has now been able to fully establish its credibility among the people as can be gauged from the fact that whereas it received 90 cases in its first year, the number has now swelled to 2100 within a period of three years.
The Additional Director-General of Police, Mr A.P. Bhatnagar, and member of the commission, talking to The Tribune here today, said more than 60 per cent cases were settled within four to six months. This had helped the panel to establish its credibility among the litigants. The commission had formulated a number of measures, including compilation of inquiry reports.
Quick dispensation of justice at the minimum possible expense without any problem of affidavits and other paper work had helped the panel to decide cases in a record time, he said.
The ADGP felt although a majority of complaints were regarding police high-handedness and harassment, it should not be construed as an indictment of the state police.
What had piqued the commission was the growing number of cases relating to child abuse. The commission had received reports of children working in a number of industries in Ludhiana, Jalandhar and other towns.
Children were also found employed in farms and brickkilns.
He said there was a need to involve voluntary and social organisations and business houses to chalk out a plan to rehabilitate street children to present their abuse.
The ADGP mentioned the Indo-British project on child rights sponsored by the commission last year which entailed providing comprehensive training to teachers, health workers and police personnel who came in immediate contact with children.
A peoples education programme on the issue had been prepared to be implemented in 12 districts of the state, Mr Bhatnagar explained. He said it was important to formulate a clear policy for the protection of child rights.
The commission, he said, was now in a position to monitor human rights violation and prepare a draft paper for the government to issue policy guidelines.
On the large number of undertrial prisoners languishing in jails, Mr Bhatnagar said it was for the government and the judiciary to work in close coordination to help these undertrials get a fair deal.
He proposed jail reforms. He said during the past 50 years very little had been done to help convicts lead a normal life both in prisons and outside .
On the commission
instituting an inquiry into the working of the local Dr
Vidya Sagar Mental Hospital, he said the committee
comprising senior retired doctors and social activists
had suggested a number of measures to
"resurrect" the hospital.
Weed out graft, cut losses,
CHANDIGARH, Jan 20 The management of the Punjab State Electricity Board has been told by the state government to weed out corrupt and inefficient officers and other employees, reduce line losses and power theft, abolish all unnecessary posts and adopt economy measures to bring about a financial viability in the board.
A meeting was held in this connection by the Punjab Chief Minister, Mr Parkash Singh Badal and Power Minister, Mr Sikander Singh Maluka with the chairman, Mr G.S. Sohal, and other board members.
Mr Sohal was recently appointed chairman of the board along with three other members by Mr Badal. It was his first formal meeting with Mr Badal and the Power minister.
Informed sources told TNS that Mr Sohal had been asked to prepare a detailed list to put the PSEB it on rails financially and otherwise. In fact, a number of steps were discussed at the meeting, and Mr Badal asked Mr Sohal to go ahead as the state government would extend its full support to him.
The steps proposed to be taken include setting up of police stations under the control of the board for registering, investigating theft cases and for following them up in courts and setting up special designation courts for the disposal of the power theft cases. Mr Badal and Mr Maluka agreed with Mr Sohal that power theft was part of the law and order problem as sometimes when the enforcement staff conduct raids, offenders tried to prevent the staff from entering the premises to check pilferage.
When contacted in this connection, Power minister, Maluka confirming the meeting, said Mr Sohal had been assured by him and by the Chief Minister that there would be no political or other interference in the functioning of the board at any level and he would enjoy full freedom to set things right.
Mr Maluka said Mr Badal
told the board authorities to send bills regularly to
rural consumers as accumulating of the bill amount
created a lot of problems in the countryside. Poor
families face the problem of paying the bill amount of
six months or so. Every consumer should get his bill
after two months as per the norms.
VHP for White Paper on
AMRITSAR, Jan 20 The Vishwa Hindu Parishad has urged the Central Government to publish a White Paper on the activities of foreign missionaries in India, particularly in North Eastern States.
The VHP Senior Vice-President, Acharya Giriraj Kishore, talking to newsmen here today said the government had already admitted in Parliament about three years back the existence of a nexus between missionaries and terrorists in Nagaland, Mizoram and Meghalaya.
The probe in the matter in the last three years must have been concluded, it was time a White Paper was published.
Expressing concern over the ill-treatment to the Indian Embassy officials at Islamabad the VHP leader advised the government to snap diplomatic ties with Pakistan.
The ISI was spreading its activities in states bordering Nepal. He claimed that whole of Uttar Pradesh border with Nepal had become a centre of activities of the ISI. The seizure of a huge quantity of RDX in Gorakhpur is a proof.
He stated that the VHP had decided to make the Hindu society "assertive".
For this purpose the VHP was revamping its various wings. The Parishad would raise about 25 departments, including the Bajrang Dal. Such departments among other things would check the activities of certain organisations working for conversion.
For this purpose the country has been divided into 11 zones, 30 provinces, 200 divisions, 700 districts, 7000 blocks and 70,000 sub-blocks. Each sub-block will comprise 2000 people. To man such programmes the VHP has decided to set up about 50,000 samitis with about 25 lakh members in one year, he added.
In addition to this the VHP was working on a plan to set up single-teacher schools in frontier zones. Two thousand such schools have already been opened. The strength of these schools would be raised to 10,000 in the three years. Non-formal education would be introduced in these schools, he added.
He said 10,000 more members would be enrolled in the Bajrang Dal. This drive would begin with a three-day seminar at Bhopal on February 18. The Bajrang Dal would fight militancy and check the activities of the ISI. The former Director General of the CBI, Mr Joginder Singh, would inaugurate the seminar.
The Acharya said that no arms training would be imparted to Bajrang Dal volunteers. The Dal would be different from the Shiv Sena.
The Acharya said the VHP was not satisfied with the functioning of the BJP government at the Centre. It had not tackled many problems, including the construction of Ram Mandir at Ayodhya.
"In fact it is not a BJP government, but a government of the National Democratic Alliance (NDA). It is following the footsteps of earlier governments."
The work for constructing the temple at Ayodhya was in progress. The carving work on 25,000 cubic feet of stone had been done, yet half the carving work remains.
Referring to the religious places of Hindus and Sikhs in China and Pakistan, the Acharya said the government should provide all help and facilities for the visit of pilgrims to Kailash Mansarovar and Katasraj.
The Acharya was welcomed
by the Shri Durgiana Mandir Committee.
No headway in Sunil Jain
LUDHIANA, Jan 20 Even after a month the body of a wellknown industrialist of the city was found in his car, the police has been unable to determine, the exact cause of the death.
The body of 35-year-old Sunil Jain was discovered on the morning of December 24 lying slumped on the front seat of his car. His hands were on the steering wheel. The body had turned blue. All doors of the car were locked and the windows closed. He had two mobile phones with him. Both had been switched off. The car was found parked by the side of the road near Dhandari Kalan on G.T. Road.
Members of his family, including his widow, are convinced that it was a murder and point an accusing finger at a "close kin". Others in the family are not sure and say he may have died of "natural causes", probably a heart attack.
The local BJP MP, Lala Lajpat Rai, suspects foul play. The SSP, Mr Kuldeep Singh, agrees the death has occurred in "suspicious circumstances".
A post-mortem report of the body was carried out despite opposition from certain members of the family. It showed certain injury marks on the body. The cause of the death will be known after the chemical analysis of the viscera.
From available accounts from Sunil Jains large circle of friends and relatives, he was a healthy man. He was regular with his morning walks and jogging. Only recently he was adjudged the swimming champion of the local Satluj Club. Therefore, there was no way he could have died of a heart attack, they argue.
On the fateful day (December 23), Sunil Jain rang up his wife, Reema, around 6-30 p.m. and informed her that he was going to Doraha to drop a "close kin". But when he failed to return by 8-30 p.m., the "close kin" on being questioned said he had no knowledge about Sunils whereabouts because he had been dropped off at the Sherpur bypass.
The car with his body was discovered the next morning.
Police investigations so far has shown that the "close kin" is in dire financial straits. Recently he was jailed in connection with a FERA case. Sunils relatives allege during his stay in jail, the "close kin" came in contact with criminal elements who may have murdered Sunil so as to grab his property. Sunil may have been poisoned which explains the blue colour of the body.
It is alleged that the police is deliberately soft-pedalling on the case in order to shield the "culprit" for extraneous considerations.
The task of the police has been made difficult by the fact that not many in Sunils family are willing to come forward to pursue the case to secure "justice" for the deceased. Their attempt, many feel, is to somehow have the case closed even though there is strong suspicion that the "close kin" may have had a hand in his death.
Meanwhile, the police
has provided security to the widow of Sunil who
apprehends threat to her life and three children from the
Govt reclaims land after 32
NAWANSHAHR, Jan 20 The district administration has got back the possession of 130 kanals and 17 marlas of government land at Mehndipur village in Balachaur subdivision after about 32 years. The land was grabbed on the basis of a fraudulent and fake entry by Garibu in connivance with revenue officials.
Dr Roshan Sunkaria, Deputy Commissioner-cum-Chief Settlement Commissioner, Nawanshahr, said the administration had got back the land by acting upon an order delivered by the court of the Financial Commissioner (Revenue), Ms Shyama Mann. He said in 1967, Tulsi Ram, and Sant Ram residents of Balewal (Balachaur) village, purchased the said land from Garibu through his general attorney, Mr Amar Singh, for Rs 7,500. However, as the Managing Officer on detecting that the alleged allottee Garibu Amar Singh had got a bogus entry made in the jamabandi in connivance with subordinate revenue officials cancelled the allotment vide his order dated March 8, 1969. The petitioners (Tulsi Ram and Sant Ram) filed an appeal under Section 22 of the Displaced Persons (C&R) Act, 1954, in the court of the Settlement Commissioner against the cancellation of the allotment to Garibu. The appeal was dismissed vide an order December 28, 1971. Further, a review petition filed before the Chief Settlement Commissioner was also dismissed vide an order January 6, 1981. Then the petitioner filed a civil writ petition in the Punjab and Haryana High Court in 1993 but it was also dismissed, said Dr Sunkaria. The petitioner then filed a revision petition in the court of the Financial Commissioner (Revenue), Punjab, on October 14, 1994, in which they, among other things, claimed that the sale was valid as it had been made prior to the cancellation order issued by the Managing Officer. The petitioners claimed that they were entitled to get the land transferred in their names. However, the Financial Commissioner (Revenue), Ms Shyama Mann, in her order maintained that the present petition was barred.
The impugned order was passed way back on January 6, 1981. As the present petition was filed on October 4, 1994, after more than 13 years, the order dated January 6, 1981, had attained finality. In her judgement, the FCR maintained that a fraud was played on the government to grab the unallotted land by manipulating revenue records with a fake entry in the jamabandi, which was not based on any allotment order issued by the competent authority. "As fraud vitiates all transactions, the vendees of the disputed land cannot be recognised as bona fide purchasers," added the FCR in her orders. She also criticised the officials concerned for showing inefficiency and inaction by allowing the petitioners illegal occupation of the land for 32 years.
The Deputy Commissioner
said proceedings would initiated against the guilty
BJP-INLD alliance stable: Modi
PATHANKOT, Jan 20 (UNI) The Bharatiya Janata Party General Secretary and in charge of Haryana Affairs, Mr Narendra Modi, today claimed that his partys alliance with the Indian National Lok Dal (INLD) was stable and the two would be contesting 35 and 55 seats, respectively, to the State Assembly going to polls on February 22.
Mr Modi talking to reporters after a Punjab party office-bearers meeting here asserted that a decision to share 90 seats in 35:55 ratio between the BJP and the INLD had been arrived at even before the Assembly was dissolved on December 14 last.
He said that the BJP leadership held three meetings with Mr Chautala and it was only after everything was sorted out between the alliance partners, the decision to dissolve the Assembly was taken.
Mr Modi maintained that it was decided during the meetings that the alliance would contest Assembly poll under the leadership of Mr Chautala, in the ratio of 55 and 35 seats by the INLD and the BJP respectively. If the alliance got majority, Mr Chautala would be the Chief Minister, he added.
The BJP leader said even after these decisions, Mr Chautala went to contest the poll on his own, it would be his (Chautala) decision.
Mr Modi said the party had taken a serious note of defeat of the BJP candidates in the last Lok Sabha election and party President Kushabhau Thakre had called for strengthening the Akali-BJP alliance during his recent visit to the state. "We are taking measures to strengthen the BJP in Punjab, he added.
Mr Modi categorically denied that any BJP leader had met sacked Akal Takht Jathedar Bhai Ranjit Singh at Amritsar as reported in a section of press.
When asked to comment on the controversy surrounding Nanakshai calendar, Mr Modi asked the state president to field the query. Mr Sodhi, who earlier had categorically expressed himself against the new calendar saying it would divide the Punjabi society, today said it was a sensitive religious issue and the Shiromani Gurdwara Prabandhak Committee, therefore,should consult all concerned and find out some appropriate solution through consensus.
Mr Modi said the meeting today discussed measures to accelerate the party membership drive in Punjab, particularly in rural areas and among women.
The State leadership had been given the target to enrol 20 per cent women of the existing strength of the party which he and Mr Sodhi declined to reveal. The drive would continue till February 15, he added.
He said Ms Uma Bhartis resignation was in protest against the highhandedness of the Congress Government in Madhya Pradesh. Being the party MP from Bhopal, it was her duty to protect the BJP MLAs and councillors and women who, he alleged, were beaten up at the behest of the Congress leaders.
Besides the state office bearers, district presidents and general secretary and heads of party front organisations, BJP Minister Master Mohan Lal and MLA Roop Rani, who do not hold any party office, were also present at the meeting to which neither the legislators nor ministers were invited.
But MLAs Ram Lal and
Satpal Saini attended the meeting in their capacity as
head of party's Dalit wing and Gurdaspur District
SAD to field candidates in
SANGAT (Bathinda), Jan 20 The Shiromani Akali Dal (Badal) has decided to field its candidates in the Haryana Assembly elections next month.
The SAD (Badal) President and Punjab Chief Minister, Mr Parkash Singh Badal, said his party would contest the coming Assembly elections in Haryana in alliance with the BJP and the INLD.
Mr Badal, who was here in connection with Sangat durbar function, told mediapersons that as the population of Punjabis in Haryana was considerable, the winning prospects of the SAD candidates were very bright.
He, however, declined to tell the number of seats from where the party wanted to field its candidates. He said talks with BJP and INLD leaders in this regard were being held.
Expressing sorrow over tension that has built up between the BJP unit of Haryana and the INLD leadership over the distribution of seats, Mr Badal said the SAD General Secretary, Mr Balwinder Singh Bhunder, was trying for a patch up between the two parties.
When asked whether there was any move to extend an offer of unity to Mr G.S. Tohra to ensure the victory of SAD candidate in the Nawanshahr by-elections, Mr Badal said all the avenues of making any sort of "association" with Mr Tohra had been closed. He, however, hinted that if any breakaway group of the Akali Dal wanted to join the SAD, such move would be welcomed.
He said the SAD would raise the demands of Punjab, including transfer of Chandigarh and Punjabi speaking areas to Punjab, fair distribution of river waters and adopting Punjabi as the second language in many States with the Central Government.
He made it clear that he had no differences with the Haryana Chief Minister, Mr Om Prakash Chautala, on the demands of Punjab. He added that every Chief Minister always tried to watch the interest of his State.
The Chief Minister alleged that previous Congress government at the Centre and Punjab had complicated the Punjabs demands so much that their solution could not be found in short time.
When asked about his reaction about the secret meeting of some BJP leaders with the former Jathedar of Akali Takht, Bhai Ranjit Singh, Mr Badal said he was not afraid of such meetings.
He said to solve the Nanakshahi calendar issue, a committee had been constituted which would submit its report shortly.
The Chief Minister, while accepting the demands of 40 panchayats of this block, announced that it would be upgraded to the level of sub-tehsil. He, however, refused the demand of the residents for opening up a degree college in the town. He announced that the bus stand of the town would be made fully modern.
Later, addressing the gathering, Mr Badal alleged that previous Congress Government did nothing for Punjab. He added that Congress ministers amassed wealth and ignored the interest of general public.
Harinder Sidhu adds: Mr Badal promised that electricity connections to farmers of this area will be given on priority. He also promised to solve the drinking water problem and acute shortage of surface irrigation.
Mr Badal warned the bureaucracy against ignoring the workers of the Akali Dal and the BJP. "If any official is not prepared to take care of the genuine problems of party workers, he should be ready to face the consequences", he added.
The Chief Minster suspended Sat Dev, SDO, Panchyati Raj on the spot following a complaint in this regard.
Mr Badal also directed
the Deputy Commissioner to prepare a master plan keeping
in view problems of the people in the district.
Parkash Singh Cong candidate for
CHANDIGARH, Jan 20 While announcing Mr Parkash Singh as the Party nominee for the Nawanshahr byelection, the president of the Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee, Mr Amarinder Singh, said the election would be a referendum on the Badal Governments performance.
Introducing Mr Parkash Singh at a press conference here this evening, Mr Amarinder Singh said the party nominee had remained a dedicated worker and office bearer of the party for the past 38 years and he knew the constituency as the back of his palm. Mr Parkash Singh is a nephew of the late Mr Dilbagh Singh, who represented the constituency since 1962 to the late nineties.
Quizzed about the possibility of an alliance with any other party, Mr Amarinder Singh said he had informal talks with CPI and CPM leaders and would formally meet them to request to extend their parties support to Mr Parkash Singh in the byelection. "My party had an alliance with the CPI and the CPM in the last Lok Sabha election in Punjab and I am sure it would continue in this election also".
The PPCC chief tried his best to convince the mediapersons that Mr Parkash Singh was a choice of Mrs Sonia Gandhi, President of the AICC, and there were no differences in the state unit of the party on his nomination. However, informed sources said Mrs Santosh Chowdhary, a member of Parliament from Phillaur, near Nawanshahr had reservation about the nomination of Mr Parkash Singh. She wanted her own confidante as the nominee for the election.
Mr Amarinder Singh said the party would highlight the failures of the Badal Government in the byelection. These include the worst fiscal condition prevailing in the state, the incompetence of the government to handle it and all other issues.
He said he would request
Mr Satnam Singh Kainth to extend support to Mr Parkash
Singh. Mr Satnam Singh Kainth, president of the Bahujan
Samaj Morcha, had recently severed ties with the
Shiromani Akali Dal headed by Mr Badal.
Brar's plan to help Sharif
doesn't take off
FEROZEPORE, Jan 20 The move to send a delegation of Indian MPs to Pakistan to seek a fair trial for deposed Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif has been derailed.
A delegation of over 80 Lok Sabha members was scheduled to visit Pakistan to prevail upon the military authorities there to ensure a fair trial for Mr Sharif who faces hijacking and treason charges. The Congress Lok Sabha member from Faridkot, Mr Jagmeet Singh Brar, had announced here that a delegation would visit Pakistan to rescue Mr Sharif from the gallows and that most MPs had agreed to be a part of such an exercise.
However, the move was derailed after several rounds of consultations with experts in foreign affairs. Sceptical Pakistan watchers are understood to have advised the MPs not to take up such a visit, as this could backfire, further jeopardising the life of Mr Sharif.
Mr Brar told TNS the party Lok Sabha member from Amritsar, Mr R.L. Bhatia, and eminent columnist Kuldeep Nayyar had advised him to drop the move as this may "provoke" the military authorities in Pakistan.
Mr Brar had mooted the idea of sending a delegation to Pakistan, arguing that India being a democracy had a definite role to play in saving an elected Prime Minister of a neighbouring country from the gallows.
On Mr Brar's call, over
80 Lok Sabha members had signed a memorandum asking the
Indian Prime Minister to assist in the endeavour.
No move to bring
FEROZEPORE, Jan 20 The BSP convener of the Punjab unit today said there was no move to bring back the former Lok Sabha member from Phillaur, Mr Satnam Singh Kainth, who had earlier left the party to align with the ruling Akali Dal-BJP combine, to the party fold.
Asked if in the light of Mr Kainths decision to snap ties with the ruling combine the party was considering to rehabilitate him, Mr Mohan Singh Phallianwala said "The party has not held consultations to this effect as yet".
Mr Kainth had deserted the party and floated the Bahujan Samaj Bachao front to contest the Lok Sabha poll with the support of the SAD-BJP combine. However, following his defeat in the last Lok Sabha election, Mr Kainth has now snapped ties with the combine.
Mr Phallianwala justified the party decision to nominate a candidate for the Nawanshahar byelection without forging an alliance. Although the Sarb Hind Shiromani Akali Dal leader, Gurcharan Singh Tohra, had hoped to field a joint candidate for the seat, Mr Phallianwala claimed: "This became necessary as no other political party came forward to forge an alliance with the BSP". Significantly, the BSP had aligned with Mr Tohras faction of the Akali Dal in the previous Lok Sabha poll. It, however, failed to bag a seat.
On whether the BSP had failed to cultivate an independent identity in Punjab in view of its repeated poll trucks, Mr Phallianwala quipped: "This is a coalition era. If the BJP can lead a coalition government, why cant the BSP have a poll trucks in Punjab?"
He denied the BSP had suffered any setback on account of Mr C.D. Singh Kambhojs defection to the Congress after remaining the President of the state unit. "Kambhoj did little for the party during his tenure as President. His ouster has no meaning for our workers". Terming the style of functioning of Mr Kambhoj as "aristocratic", he said the BSP needed leaders with "worker-like qualities".
He said all measures of the ruling combine aimed at winning the confidence of Dalit voters had failed to yield results. Mr Phallianwala accused the Akali Dal of "engineering" the ouster of Rai Sikhs from the lands allotted to them on lease in border villages.
He said this reflected
the mindset of the "casteist Akali Dal".
"The BSP is trying to bring into its fold a maximum
number of persons from outside the Dalit community to
shed the label of being a party of SCs", Mr
YAD to project Congs
CHANDIGARH, Jan 20 A meeting of the SAD Youth Akali Dal with president, Mr Amrik Singh Aliwal, a former MP, in the chair held here today decided to organise itself for a vigorous campaign in the Nawanshahr byelection.
Mr Aliwal in a signed statement said the theme song will be to take on the Congress and project its "anti-Punjab and anti-Sikh policies."
Majority of the voters in Nawanshahr belong to the Dalit, who were with the SAD, the statement of Mr Aliwal claimed.
The meeting, which
chalked out the campaign strategy, was attended, among
others, by over 60 youth workers whose names have been
appended to the press statement.
Jacob: optimum use of info-tech
LUDHIANA, Jan 20 The Governor of Punjab, Mr J.F.R. Jacob, today stressed the need for a qualitative change in economic and social policies and for developing industry on modern lines with the optimum use of the computer and information technology to put Punjab on the development track to meet the challenges posed by globalisation.
The Governor was addressing the inaugural function of a four-day seminar on "Punjab beyond 2000" organised by the Punjabi Sahit Akadami and the Institute of Punjabi Culture here.
The Governor said Punjab had made significant achievements in the agriculture sector. Now attention was required on more agro-based export-oriented processing units. He emphasised the need to strengthen the marketing network in older to sell, more produce in the international market.
Mr Jacob said in order to ensure people's participation in the process of modernisation, pachayats must be given more powers and procedural hurdles removed.
In his keynote address, Mr Sukhbir Singh Badal, presented a five-point programme for a "new, prosperous Punjab". He said economic growth could only be made by inducting modern technology in industry and diverting focus from agriculture to industry. He said for the promotion of modern industry, a strong infrastructural base would have to be provided. Punjabi youth should be imparted training in computer science.
Addressing the seminar, Mr Tota Singh, Education Minister, said to meet the challenges of this century, quality education was of utmost importance.
Mr Jagdish Singh Garcha, Technical Education Minister, said the Punjab Government would strengthen technical education.
Mr G.S. Kalkat, Vice-Chancellor, Punjab Agriculture University, stressed on the need to implement the latest technology available at the international level to divert farmers from main crops to vegetables and fruit.
Mr Amrik Singh Pooni,
President, Punjabi Sahit Akademi, and Mr J.S. Grewal,
former Director, Indian Institute of Advanced Studies,
Shimla, also addressed the function.
Govt pledges to lepers hollow
HOSHIARPUR: All tall claims of the government to rehabilitate lepers and to eradicate leprosy have proved hollow and there is no other alternative for lepers except to take to begging to remain alive.
These views are expressed by Mr Net Ram, an old leprosy patient, who is in charge of the lepers colony, while talking to this correspondent.
There are 61 lepers including 33 women and 27 men and one child in the lepers colony located on the old Dhobi Ghat-Adamwal Road across the Bhangi choe in this town. This colony, which has 36 houses along with a temple of Lord Shiva and a dharamshala, was constructed by noted film distributor and producer, Gulshan Rai in 1980 to house lepers of the area.
Mr Net Ram pointed out that lepers had compromised with the prevailing conditions and nature. Lepers generally go to the town and sit in front of various temples and gurdwaras from 5.30 a.m. to 9.30 a.m. daily for alms. Some philanthropists occasionally visit the colony and provide aid in kind to residents.
Mr Net Ram said the recent hike in the power tariff had adversely hit lepers. The monthly power bill of the colony had now doubled from Rs 3,000 to Rs 6,000, which caused great hardship to them. He said though a monthly pension had been sanctioned by the government to all lepers of the colony but payment had not been made for the past seven months.
He had met all local political leaders a number of times to get a job for his son, who was physically and mentally fit but his pleas fell on deaf ears. He said even medicines and bandages were not given to them by the Health Department or the district Leprosy Society. However, some of the donors were kind enough to meet their requirements.
Mr Net Ram strongly criticised the municipal authorities for ignoring the sanitation of their colony. The septic tank of the colony had developed cracks for which he had approached the municipal authorities many times for repair but nothing had materialised so far. Owing to their physical conditions they could not work to earn their livelihood and begging was the only source of income for them.
To eradicate leprosy, the central government had started the National Leprosy Eradication Programme (NLEP) in 1980. Since then the Centre was providing all funds to the NLEP. The strategy to eradicate this problem is early detection and regular treatment of leprosy cases, multi-drug treatment to all patients, educating patients, their families and the community about leprosy and its curability, and rehabilitation of cured patients to make them economically self-reliant and socially acceptable.
To implement the
programme, district leprosy societies had been
constituted in all district. But the programme remained
on paper only.
Corporation told to furnish details
CHANDIGARH, Jan 20 While disposing of a Member of writ petitions filed by more than 200 allottees of industrial plots at Mohali, challenging the demand of enhanced price in respect of the plots, a Division Bench comprising Mr Justice G.S. Singhvi and Mr Justice Iqbal Singh today directed the Punjab State Small Industries and Export Corporation to furnish details for claiming enhanced price to each allottee within two months and after that decide each case by a speaking order after giving personal hearing, if so demanded.
The allottees of the plots had challenged the enhancement mainly on the ground that the corporation had furnished no details for claiming enhanced price. They had also submitted that they were entitled to receive rebate and subsidy also as per the letter of allotment. They sought that this amount should also be adjusted against the demand.
The Bench also directed
the corporation to consider this. The allottees have also
been given liberty to file objections against the
detailed demand which would also be considered by the
corporation while deciding individual cases.
Jeans, churidars upstage
PATIALA Jan 20 Picture Patiala, and you picture the all-time Patiala peg. Next comes the famous Patiala salwar. After all, can women be far behind once you start of with the Patiala peg? However, in the days of MTV and everchanging fashions, while the Patiala peg is still a roaring favourite, the Patiala salwar is slipping into oblivion.
There was a time when the Patiala salwar was the norm for sardarnis of this once princely state. They could be seen going shopping on tongas looking stately wrapped in metres of cloth forming several pleats. The pleats were shown to the maximum by short shirts with a silken nala also showing for effect. The salwar had a large opening at its lower end which was intricately embroidered.
Fashion and convenience have taken their toll on the Patiala salwar since then. While earlier its popularity waxed and waned according to the fashion of the day, later convenience has played a major role in its redundancy amongst the younger generation. The size of the shirt has also always dictated the importance of the Patiala salwar. While it was shown to maximum with short shirts, longer shirts did not require heavy salwars and even gave way to the entrance of churidars in the attire of girls.
While an original Patiala shahi salwar is a rare sight, its bastardised forms are still in vogue. These includes salwars which are slightly lesser pleated and do not use so much cloth as the originals. They even have a name for such salwars semi Patiala. These salwars have been exported outside the city with great success to all corners of the world and are even taken to be original Patiala salwars by many.
However, girls of Patiala dont seem to be preferring even semi Patiala salwars so much, what to talk of the original variety. Those at the government college for girls and Punjabi University would rather wear jeans and tops or churidars. The ordinary salwar kameej is still worn by a large number but many say it is due to the fact that orthodox views still prevail in this city to some extent.
Jasreena Sandhu epitomisis the mood of the younger generation saying she wouldnt go in for any salwar kameej. Speaking on the Patiala salwar she says only aunties wear them. Give me jeans and tops anyday. Bindiya Marwaha says she wears western outfits for the convenience they offer. Right now I am equipped for the winter with my top, whereas a cardigan over a salwar kameej would make me look so dowdy.
It is not as if the Patiala salwar does not appeal to youngsters any longer. Many find it beautiful but say it is just not convenient in present times besides being out of fashion. With shirt lengths touching the ankles, in many cases it make little sense to wear heavy salwars, say girls. They say it is okay to wear them at formal occasions but to wear them to college is difficult. It is so heavy its base keeps touching the ground and its gets dirty and bedraggled very soon, says a girl.
Though the salwar
touches emotional chords due to its association with the
city, it seems to have been done away with by the new
happening generation, which is more comfortable with
jeans and an occasional skirt with minis still to make an
appearance in Patiala.
Culture practices undergoing
PATIALA, Jan 20 Noted international scholar Dr Ajiaz Ahmed today said it should be ascertained how a whole range of culture practices were being transformed following the reforms instituted in the country.
He termed the present situation as the greatest crisis the country had faced since 1947 at a two-day national seminar on interrogating the post-condition, theory, tests and contests organised by the Department of English at Punjabi University here.
Dr Ahmed said we must ask ourselves whether or not the Indian cultural patterns had remained the same, and if not then we should ascertain how a whole range of cultural practices, from modes of religious observance to the performing arts, had been transformed by those epochal changes.
In his presidential address, Dr Jasbir Singh Ahluwalia, Vice-Chancellor, Punjabi University, while presenting a philosophical overview of post-modernism and 21st century said that post-modernism was not a chronological concept, but a new mode of legitimised, reorganised and strengthened capitalism. Dr Ahluwalia stated that the cumulative result of the various philosophies and ideologies since the 16th century was that mans life and his realm of reality, derived its sense and significance not from any outside but from within the this worldly reality.
Dr Ahluwalia said at the beginning of the modern civilisation the philosophy of rationalism took reason as the only way of knowing reality. Reason reigned supreme in nature, history and society during the first half of the 20th century when it was knocked off from it sovereign pedestal by its own self-contradictions, its own self-confidence. The quest for a new mode of thinking and methology does not mean a regress from reason, not "going back" from reason to the irrational, but going to the supra-rational spirit in which the rational would endure as the past endures in the present.
Introducing the theme of the seminar and listing the thrust areas, Dr Manjit Inder Singh, coordinator of the seminar, pointed out that it is impossible to evaluate or to discuss any work of literature without taking note of the prefixes such as post, neo, meta and hyper in todays critical practices. This was added and inaugurated a phase of post-history in which the relevance of the present is the most significant. Partially the post-situation, he pointed out, is aligned to a host of other developments in technology, capitalist marketing, liberal democracy and globalisation.
Welcoming the delegates
Dr Ranjit Kaur Kapoor, chairperson, Department of
English, stated that post-modernism was one of the major
focal points in the emergence of inter-disciplinary and
cultural studies. Those who presented their paper in the
two business sessions today included Dr Jasbir Jain, Dr
Rupinder Kaur, Dr B.L. Chakoo, Dr S.L. Paul and Dr Manju
Jaidka. The business sessions were presided over by Dr
Gurbhagat Singh and Dr M.L. Raina.
Patialas vanishing playgrounds
PATIALA, Jan 20 Development comes with a heavy price tag. This city with a rich sports tradition, talented sportspersons and sports aficionados, has been reduced to helplessly watching, with each passing day, playground after playground disappearing into oblivion, all in the name of development.
Concrete structures have taken the place of numerous sportsfields here. The first major ground to face the axe was the City High School Ground, spread over an area of more than four football fields and where many competitive cricket, hockey and football matches were played. Test cricketers like Mohinder Amarnath, Surinder Amarnath and Duleep Trophy cricketers like M.P. Pandove (a former national selector), Umesh Kumar, a former captain of Punjab Ranji Trophy squad, Surinder Sharma, who played against the visiting Australian team in 1968 and many other cricketers who have made a name for themselves used to practise at the ground, located in the heart of city.
Old-timers recall that even legendary Lala Amarnath used to come here and gave valuable tips to cricketers. Even several international hockey players used to play competitive matches here. Unfortunately, crass commercialisation has played a big role in destroying the ground and now what has come up is a multi-storeyed building, which houses the State Languages Department, the tallest water tank in the city, a couple of tubewells and other concrete structures, putting a full stop to all sports activities which were previously held on this ground.
The Police Lines Ground in Raghomajra was the next in line, as apart from a police station, a residential colony has also mushroomed on the ground. Even national hockey camps were held here, notable among these being the national hockey camp, held in preparation for the 1956 Melbourne Olympics, 1960 Rome Olympics and the 1958 Tokyo Asian Games. That was the time when Indias domination in the world of hockey was complete. Internationally renowned hockey players like Balbir Singh (Sr.), former President of the IHF and now a member of the International Olympic Committee (IOC), Mr Ashwani Kumar, Charanjit Singh, Dharam Singh, Maj Dhyan Chand and the grand old man of the Indian hockey Udham Singh, all Olympians, practised on this ground. Whatever space remains is being utilised by vegetable vendors as a vegetable market is just in front of the ground.
Then came the turn of Master Tara Singh Park, which used to cater to the sports needs of Sewak Jatha High School and Government Girls School (No. 32). Annual sports meets of these schools and other competitions used to be held here. Now what has come up is a huge water tank, a PSEB sub-station-cum-complaint centre and two tubewells, leaving absolutely no space for children to play.
Another example is of B.N. Khalsa School (Sirhind Road) ground. While commercial structures have come up on one side, a residential colony has come up on the other. Moreover, as the school building is getting bigger, the ground is getting smaller.
The Arya Samaj Ground was used by children of SDSE School to play hockey and cricket but now filth and squalor, coupled with the construction of a water tank, have dashed hopes of young players.
There are numerous other examples of grounds which were meant exclusively for sports but space constraints do not allow for these to be detailed.
Sports psychologists are of the view that when a child grows, his urge is to play at the nearest available ground, and even parents are wary of sending children to grounds which are far away from their residence. This is one reason why there is little or no space available in urban areas.
To top it, if there is any space left for sports activities, that is used by jamborees such as melas, functions, and even circus-owners deem it fit to pitch their tents on school grounds. For example, the Arsk School ground is leased out to a circus and the Polo Ground, which comes under the Punjab Sports Department, but sometimes is used to hold melas like the Red Cross Mela, which concluded at the Polo Grounds on Monday only. Sports activity at the Polo Grounds where training is imparted in as many as 15 sports disciplines, comes to a halt for several days when such melas are in progress.
Former VC of Punjabi
University and Senior Vice-President of the IHF, Prof.
Gursewak Singh say that even though nothing can be done
now to save those grounds where concrete structures have
come up, the Administration can mark out a particular
venue for holding melas, circuses and other functions,
like the Chandigarh Administration has earmarked the
Sector 17 Parade Ground.
Governor to unfurl flag at
CHANDIGARH, Jan 20 The Punjab Governor, Lieut-Gen JFR Jacob (retd.), will unfurl the National Flag on January 26 at Jalandhar while, Mr Parkash Singh Badal, Chief Minister, will do so at Amritsar.
A spokesman of the Punjab government said today the following schedule had been chalked out for the ministers: Mr Balramji Dass Tandon, will unfurl the flag at Hoshiarpur, Mr Ranjit Singh Brahmpura at Gurdaspur, Mr Gurdev Singh Badal at Mansa, Mr Madan Mohan Mittal at Ropar, Capt. Kanwaljit Singh at Patiala, Dr Upinderjit Kaur at Nawanshahr, Mr Nirmal Singh Kahlon at Sangrur, Mr Manoranjan Kalia at Moga, Master Mohan Lal at Faridkot, Raja Narinder Singh at Bathinda, Mr Raghbir Singh at Kapurthala, Dr Rattan Singh at Fatehgarh Sahib, Mr Sarwan Singh Phillaur at Muktsar, Mr Tota Singh at Ferozepore, Mr Sewa Singh Sekhwan at Tarn Taran, Mr Sucha Singh Langah at Jagraon, Dr Baldev Raj Chawla at Ajnala, Mr Adesh Partap Singh Kairon at Mohali, Mr Natha Singh Dalam at Batala, Mr Gobind Singh Kanjla at Malerkotla, Mr Janmeja Singh Sekhon at Anandpur Sahib, Mr Sikandar Singh Maluka at Sultanpur Lodhi, Mr Ajit Singh Kohar at Shahkot, Mrs Kaur Sandhu at Khanna, Mr Chiranji Lal Garg at Phagwara, Ch. Swarna Ram at Nakodar, Mr Surjit Kumar Jyani at Jaito, Mr Nusrat Ali Khan at Rajpura, and Mr Jagdish Singh Garcha at Samrala.
Mr Sujan Singh will
unfurl the tricolour at Malout, Master Tara Singh at
Kharar, Mr Ranjit Singh Ballian at Sunam, Mr Gobind Singh
Longowal at Barnala, Mr Ajaib Singh Mukhmailpur at Nabha,
Mr Tikshan Sood at Pathankot, Mr Balbir Singh Chowdhry at
Dasuya, Mr Gulzar Singh Ranike at Baba Bakala, Mr Sohan
Singh Thandal at Balachaur and Mrs Mohinder Kaur at
Decision on new city
CHANDIGARH, Jan 20 The Punjab Minister for Urban Housing and Development, Dr Upinder Jit Kaur, today emphasised the need to establish a new city, Anandgarh, approved by the Cabinet, due to the demand for housing and other services on Chandigarh and on the satellite towns of Panchkula and Mohali.
The combined population of the three towns is above 11 lakh, an increase of 40 per cent in the past eight years.
An independent study, undertaken by the Punjab Urban Development Authority (PUDA), estimates the population to exceed 20 lakh by 2020. Chandigarh and its peripheral towns have the potential to absorb an additional inflow of seven to eight lakhs, which leaves around six to seven lakhs of population with unfulfilled housing needs. Thus, it is imperative to set up a new city around Chandigarh on 10,000 acres.
The minister appealed to the public, especially farmers and landowners in the proposed Anandgarh area, not to be misled by false propaganda by certain vested interests. She urged the people not to sell or transfer their land or property till the government announced the official and complete compensation package.
She also stated that the
plan to construct a six-lane express highway, linking
Chandigarh and Anandpur
Salaries not paid
PATIALA, Jan 20 The Punjab Government Ayurvedic Teachers Association today said that the staff of the Government Ayurvedic College here has still not received salary for the month of December.
In a presentation sent to Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal the association said even though the government had announced that the salary would be paid on December 24, now almost a month had passed but no salary has been released.
Dr V.K. Rehni, General
Secretary, said the Ayurvedic staff had always been given
a step-motherly treatment. Even the UGC scales for them
approved by a high-powered committee in 1998 have not
been released so far, while other government staff have
Project for science fair
PATIALA, Jan 20 A project on environmental sciences titled Greenhouse effect and global warming by Jaswinder Singh and Baljinder Singh, students of Senior Secondary Model School, Punjabi University, has been selected by the Punjab State Education authorities for participation in the northern zonal science fair, 2000 which is being organised by the National Council of Science Museums from January 20 to 22 in New Delhi.
Giving this information,
Dr Baghel Singh Sohi, supervisor of the project, said
seven states are taking part in the fair.
Power engineers start work to
PATIALA, Jan 20 Junior engineers and assistant engineers working in the Punjab State Electricity Board today started work to rule in support of the struggling UPSEB employees and engineers.
Disclosing this here, Mr P.K. Alipuria general secretary of the Council of Junior Engineers said if splitting of the UPSEB was not withdrawn, the agitation started by the UP power board employees would spread in other parts of the country. Mr Sukhdev Singh, president of the council, condemned the trifurcation of UPSEB on the direction of the World Bank and said this was the first step towards privatisation of the UPSEB. He pointed out that the UP Government was not making people aware of the increase in tariff structure after privatisation.
Mr Rajinder Saini, a spokesman of the council, said here that about 5000 junior engineers had started work to rule in the state. They would only perform normal duties and would not attend emergency duties at odd hours.
Mr Charanjit Singh, secretary of the Ropar Thermal Plant PSEB Engineers Association, said here this evening that they would walk out from the plant for two hours tomorrow from 12 noon.
A large number of
employees of the RTP held a gate rally at the plant in
support of the UPSEB employees.
Sanstha organises cultural nite
AMRITSAR, Jan 20 To mark the birth anniversary of Guru Gobind Singh and the advent of the new century, the local Kes Sambhal Parchar Sanstha organised a "Dharmik te sabhyacharik geetan di shaam" at Guru Nanak Bhavan recently.
Prominent singers like K.S. Mundry, Madhu, Sohal and Jagmohan Kaur rendered religious songs. Mundry sang, "Sikhi di shaan kesan naal", the opening song of his new cassette released by Mr Narinderjit Singh, Deputy Commissioner.
The fifth issue of the sansthas souvenir was released by Dr Harbhajan Singh Soch, Vice- Chancellor, Guru Nanak Dev University. The programme presented by the children of Khalsa College Public School here was enjoyed by all. The other items included gidda by students of Khalsa College for Women and two songs on the new century.
Prominent among those who attended the function were Mr Surinder Jit Singh Pall, Commissioner of Income Tax, Amritsar and Jammu and Kashmir.
Six prominent Sikh women
of Amritsar were honoured for their achievements in
specific fields. They were Dr Jasjit Chhachhi (medical
science), Ms Phoolan Rani (Arts), Ms Madanjit Kaur
(Education), Ms Sharan Makkar (Literature), Ms Gurmeet
Bawa (sabhyachar singing) and Ms Manjeet Kaur (social
Pay hike for PNFC staff
NANGAL, Jan 20 Employees of Punjab National Fertilizers and Chemicals Ltd (PNFC) have been given a hike in salaries. As per an agreement, the salaries of workers have been raised by 78 per cent and those of the administrative staff by 60 per cent.
However, this hike in the salaries has come only on parer. The employees, who have not been getting paid since September, 1999, have been told that their salaries have been revised.
Various employee unions of the PNFC, including the PNFC Workers Union and the SC/BC PNFC Employees Welfare Association, have now written to the Secretary, Labour and Employment, and the Labour Commissioner, Punjab, to intervene and help them get their salaries. They have alleged that their salaries have been withheld by the management without any notice in gross violation of the Wages Act 1936.
The PNFC General Manager when asked admitted that the workers had not been getting salaries since September. Since the PNFC had stopped production for last one year now there was no money to pay the salaries. About the revision in the salaries he said this would strengthen the claims of the employees legally.
The case of PNFC will
come up for hearing before the BIFR, on January 24.
According to sources in the PNFC management, the Punjab
Government has recommended winding up of the project.
Army honours war heroes, kin
AMRITSAR, Jan 20 An impressive investiture ceremony was held at the Panther Auditorium in the cantonment today to honour war heroes and the kin of soldiers killed in action.
Lt-Gen Vijay Oberoi, PVSM, AVSM, VSM, General Officer, Commanding-in-Chief, Western Command, presented 71 awards, out of which 65 were Sena Medals, three Vishist Seva Medals and two Jeevan Raksha Padaks.
Nineteen awards were given posthumously.
Lt-Gen Oberoi, while commending the valour of the Indian jawans, congratulated the award winners and conveyed his heartfelt sympathies to the kin of the martyrs. He called for constant vigil to thwart the clandestine designs of the ISI.
The ceremony evoked
mixed feelings among the recipients. Deserving special
mention is L/Nk Faguva Oraon, SM of 9 Para Commando
Forces, who was the sole recipient of Bar to Sena Medal
for his conspicuous and consistent acts of bravery in
combating terrorism in Jammu and Kashmir. Bar to Sena
Medal is a Sena Medal given for two consecutive years.
This brave soldier fought in the Poonch sector near the
LoC commanding an attack against an ISI picket in which
he sustained an AK-47 injury but continued to fight.
Gen Oberoi lauds Indian Army
AMRITSAR, Jan 20 The Indian Army is one of the best armies. This has been proved in Operation Vijay in Jammu and Kashmir. Lieut Gen Vijay Oberoi, General Officer Commanding, Western Command, said this to this correspondent here today.
Speaking at the Panther auditorium he said it was their training during peace times that had helped them to secure the territory back from the Pakistan army and repulse intruders in the Kargil sector during May last year.
Doubts over the combat readiness of the Army have been cleared by supreme sacrifices of jawans and officers.
Lieut General Oberoi felt that a large number of troops were being deployed to curb insurgency in Kashmir and the North-East. Counter-insurgency operations had helped to reorient the forces.
After the Kargil operation, the morale of the Army was very high.
The Army was trying to persuade various State Governments to provide cash compensation and grants to the next of kin of those killed in counter insurgency operations before Kargil and during the ongoing Operation Rakshak in the Kashmir valley and also in the North East.
He pointed out that the
Army was providing recruitment to the all eligible wards
of the those killed in the war.
Tota Singhs remarks
HOSHIARPUR, Jan 20 Mr Balwant Singh Khera, former President of the Punjab Janata Dal, today criticised the statement of Mr Tota Singh, Education Minister, that the Directorate of Primary Education in Punjab would be abolished in April and all primary schools upgraded to middle schools. In a press note Mr Khera said the formation of the Directorate of Primary Education was done in 1976 after discussions in the state Assembly and the consent of all political parties.
After its formation, 10000 head teachers, 1500 central head teachers and 228 block primary education officers were appointed.
He said before taking such a decision Mr Tota Singh should have consulted education experts.
Mr Khera alleged that Mr
Tota Singh was ordering postings and transfers of
teachers by holding his "own court." This had
adversely hit the working of Directorate of Primary
Education as well as the District Education Offices in
Akal Takht status
AMRITSAR, Jan 20 Giani Sulakhan Singh Tripat, President, Shiromani Gurmat Prachar Sanstha (SGPS), Amritsar, in a statement here yesterday said the 11-member committee formed by the SGPC to go into the Nanakshahi Calendar issue had undermined the supremacy of Akal Takht. He said Mr Pal Singh Purewal had unnecessarily created a rift among various Sikh factions to prove a point.
On the other hand, he
alleged that the Akal Takht Jathedar, Giani Puran Singh,
had not taken a strong stand.
Stir against DD officials
JALANDHAR, Jan 20 A number of social and political organisations staged a demonstration in front of the Doordarshan building here today in protest against the alleged corrupt practices of certain Doordarshan officials.
Addressing the gathering, Mr Arun Sharma Pappu, the president of a morcha, alleged that corruption was rampant in Doordarshan and its employees sought bribes from artistes for allowing them to take part in different programmes. He demanded a CBI inquiry into the matter as a number of artistes, including some reputed singers, had levelled serious corruption charges against Doordarshan officials.
Mr Inderjit Thakur, the district President of the Samata Party, alleged that the standard of Doordarshan programmes was declining with each passing day and the main reason behind it was that genuine artistes were not being encouraged.
Mr Ajay Puri, President
of the All-India Anti-Corruption Board, also spoke.
Defence exhibition a big draw
GURDASPUR, Jan 20 A two-day defence exhibition concluded at the local military complex today. The exhibition, which was inaugurated by Brig J.S. Rajal, Station Commander, displayed various equipment, including artillery guns, reconnaissance vehicles, anti-tank guided missile launchers and infantry support weapons. It also had a section depicting several war equipment captured during the Kargil operations.
A large number of
people, including students from local schools, thronged
the exhibition and evinced a keen interest in the
military hardware on display.
Israel experts visit village
PADHARI KALAN (Amritsar), Jan 20 An Israeli team of agro experts visited the Rural Demonstration and Training Centre here to get first-hand information on the self employment project set up by the Punjab Government.
The team consisting of Mr Matanya Ben Oran and Mr Yehuda Spmechil, evinced a keen interest in dairy development and horticulture.
The Minister for Dairy
Development and Animal Husbandry, Dr Rattan Singh Ajnala
and the Deputy Commissioner, Mr Narinderjit Singh, and
officers of various departments accompanied the experts.
Proclaimed offender arrested
GURDASPUR, Jan 20 The police has arrested a proclaimed offender.
Mr Varinder Kumar, SSP, briefing newsmen here today identified the accused as Surjit Masih, a resident of Tung village in this district. The accused is reported to have been involved in theft cases in which 146 and 114 wheat bags, respectively, were stolen from a warehouse godown here in 1989 and 1990, respectively. The accused was also involved in the burgling of 317 LPG cylinders.
Mr Varinder Kumar said that the accused along with his accomplices Ajit Masih, Bashir Masih, Rawat Masih, Gurnam Masih, alias Gama and Yunas Masih, who are still at large, stole 166 bags of wheat from the warehouse. A case under Section 457/380 of the IPC was registered.
In another case the suspect with his associates Jit Masih, Bashir Masih, Rawat Masih, Gurnam Masih had stolen 114 bags of wheat from a truck bearing No. PBO-2486. A case under Sections 457 and 380 of the IPC was registered at police station here. The accused along with his accomplices was arrested. Later he gave a slip to the police and was declared a proclaimed offender.
Mr Varinder Kumar said the accused started driving a truck in Rajasthan in 1995. His truck (NLZ-7014) was intercepted by the Churu police. The truck was loaded with 317 stolen LPG cylinders which were recovered by the Rajasthan police. Ajit Masih and Jiwan Masih were accompanying the accused. All the three were sentenced to 10-year-imprisonment. They were undergoing imprisonment.
Mr Varinder Kumar said that on December 14, last year Surjit Masih was being brought by Bikaner police under escort to the court of Chief Judicial Magistrate for a hearing in the said two cases. The accused managed to give a slip to escorts constable Rajinder Kumar and constable Binder Singh. In this connection a case under Section 224 and 225 of the IPC was registered at the city police station on December 15.
Mr Varinder Kumar said
the accused was sighted around Kahnuwan Chowk. The naka
party arrested the accused. His interrogation was in
progress, the SSP said.
Three booked in MTP case
LUDHIANA, Jan 20 In an interesting case, the police has registered a first information report (FIR) against Sukhwinder Kaur almost five months after she got medical termination of pregnancy (MTP) done allegedly without the consent of her husband.
A case under Section 313 of the IPC (abortion without consent of spouse) has been registered against Mrs Sukhwinder Kaur and her parents, Mr Swaran Singh and Mrs Chinder Kaur, for aiding and abetting her in getting MTP done. The case has been registered on the complaint of her husband, Mr Hardev Singh.
The FIR states that Sukhwinder got pregnant soon after her marriage to Hardev, much to his and his familys jubilation. Sukhwinder was reportedly unhappy about her pregnancy and she broached the subject of abortion with Hardev, who brushed it aside.
When she went to her parents house in Sangrur, she got her MTP done at a local hospital there. When Hardev got to know of it, he approached the police and complained that the abortion was illegal and without his consent.
Almost five months after
the complaint the police registered a case on January 18
after seeking the opinion of legal experts and medical
practitioners. Sources in the police informed that a
police party is also likely to be dispatched to Sangrur
to arrest the three suspects.
Court remand for school clerk
LUDHIANA, Jan 20 A former clerk at Tagore Public School, Pardeep Sood, arrested by the police on charges of embezzlement, cheating, fraud and tampering with school records has been given judicial remand till February 2.
The accused was arrested following a complaint by a member of the Ludhiana Aggarwal Cooperative House Building Society against him, alleging embezzlement of school money. A case under Sections 406, 420, 467, 468, 471 and 120-B of the IPC was registered.
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