|Friday, February 11, 2000,
Arrest warrants for ex-minister
BJP opposes English as
Follow ideals of Sir Chhotu Ram:
College teachers to stage dharna
Vajpayee's visit today
HISAR, Feb 10 As preparations are in full swing for Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee's visit scheduled for tomorrow, the local BJP leaders have great expectations. Against the support the party got during the Lok Sabha elections, BJP's campaign is yet to pick up this time.
The Vajpayee magic does not appear to have worked till now, as Assembly elections are being fought entirely on different issues. Evaluation of the candidates also is an important. That is why the Independent candidates like Mr Hari Singh Saini and Mr Om Prakash Mahajan are as important as Dr Kamal Gupta of the BJP and Mr Om Prakash Jindal of the Congress.
Mr Vajpayee's tomorrow's visit is expected to consolidate the Indian National Lok Dal and the BJP alliance in the state. Since Chief Minister Om Prakash Chautala will also address the meeting along with Mr Vajpayee, all confusion will get cleared.
Although Mr Chautala has been campaigning for the BJP candidates also, certain misunderstanding had appeared due to Mr Om Prakash Mahajan's statement that he enjoyed Mr Chautala's blessings. As the Chief Minister seeks votes for Dr Kamal Gupta tomorrow all doubts will disappear, Mr Shriniwas Goel, state vice-president of the BJP said.
Chief Minister Om Prakash Chautala was here today to supervise arrangements for Mr Vajpayee's visit. During his campaign tour, Mr Chautala yesterday night ensure that all arrangements were made properly. Besides, it was also a hint to INLD workers that they should participate in the arrangements with zeal.
The town has been decorated with green and saffron flags, everywhere. However, Congress flags are visible in no less number. In fact, supporters of Congress candidate O.P. Jindal have already flooded the city with party flags. While the BJP and INLD workers were doing it today, the Congress workers finished the job yesterday.
Preparations are marked by unprecedented security in the city in general and at the rally venue in particular. The rally is being held in the Old Government College grounds. The venue has been sealed since yesterday and security cordon laid. The Prime Minister's helicopter will land in the HAU campus, one kilometre from the venue of the meeting.
have been so strict that the journalists supposed to
cover the tomorrow's rally have been asked to submit two
copies of their photographs. While one copy will be
pasted to the security pass, another would be retained by
the police. This unusual procedure led to resentment
among the scribes.
EC decision may hit voting
KARNAL, Feb 10 The latest announcement by the Chief Election Commissioner of India, Mr M.S. Gill, that voting would be allowed to identity card holders in Haryana is likely to affect percentage of polling in the state. The announcement has sent jitters amongst the candidates who used to indulge in bogus voting. The candidates also have been taken by surprise as this would affect the percentage of voting in the villages.
In the past elections voting used to be maximum in the countrywide only while the cities recorded less polling. But the latest instructions would deprive a large number of villagers of their right to vote.
Even the Chief Election Commissioner has admitted that photo identity cards are available only with 65 per cent voters in the state.
The rest 35 per cent has been allowed to use ration cards, passport driving licence, property documents, bank pass books, post office saving accounts pass book etc. But this leaves a big lacuna for a large number of illiterate voters. The women in the villages may be the bigger losers.
For every one family in the village does not possess ration cards. Even if these are there very few have joint family photographs attached to it. In a number of cases women have drawn up veils on their faces and identification for the polling staff in such cases might be difficult. It is a custom that women in southern Haryana cover their faces with a veil and are averse to keeping faces uncovered before their elders. Very few women and families have passports in their names. In joint families, the property documents are often in the name of one elder and ordinarily women do not figure in it. Very few women in the villages have bank account or post office account. The decision of the Election Commission without taking ground realities into consideration would affect the voting percentage.
According to enquiries made in the last parliamentary poll Haryana recorded a polling percentage of 65 to 68 per cent. In the Assembly elections in 1996, the average polling percentage was near 70 per cent in the state. Observers feel that if the guidelines of the Election Commission were strictly followed, the state may experience polling percentage of less than 60 per cent.
Less polling is likely
to affect the chances and fate of many candidates
especially parties with the rural background. The only
main advantage of the Election Commissions decision
would be that it would lead to the checking of bogus
voting to some extent.
Electioneering at low key
ROHTAK, Feb 10 Although nine candidates are in the fray from the Rohtak Assembly constituency, it will be a triangular contest between the Congress candidate, Mr Shadi Lal Batra, the BJP nominee, Mr Munish Grover, and a rebel Congress candidate, Mr Subhash Batra, a former minister.
The electioneering is yet at a low key. The hustle and bustle normally associated with the elections is missing. The main contenders appear to be concentrating on the door-to-door canvassing so as to establish a direct rapport with the voter.
The election scenario in this urban constituency is still confusing as the trends are yet to be set. The Congress and the BJP, the two major contenders for the seat, are plagued with dissensions. Group rivalries and infighting among the ranks of the two parties has made going touch for the party candidates.
Mr Sri Kishan Dass, who represented this constituency in the dissolved Vidhan Sabha as a nominee of the Haryana Vikas Party, is not contesting the elections this time due to ill-health. The party has, therefore, nominated Mr Satish Kumar, a distant relative of Mr Sri Kishan Das, but he is considered to be a lightweight.
In the 1996 Assembly elections, the BJP had aligned with the HVP and this helped Mr Sri Kishan Das to corner 5,6863 votes, which came out to be 64.85 per cent of the total votes polled.
The then Congress candidate and now contesting as a rebel, Mr Subhash Batra, had polled approximately 27.42 per cent (24045) votes.
However, there is no wave this time in favour or against any political party. The infighting within the ranks of the major political parties has created an uncertain situation in which even the rebels see a chance.
Interestingly, both the Congress and the BJP have fielded new faces. The Congress candidate, Mr Shadi Lal Batra, is the president of the DCC (Urban) and enjoys the support and patronage of the Pradesh Congress chief, Mr Bhupinder Singh Hooda. An advocate by profession, he is also known in the constituency.
The BJP nominee, Mr Munish Grover and Mr Shadi Lal Batra are contesting elections for the first time and both are facing dissensions within their respective parties.
An influential section of the BJP, led by former Municipal President and senior leader, Mr Sunder Lal Sethi, has not so far reconciled to the nomination of Mr Grover. This faction has in the past one week held at least two meetings and decided to 'abstain' from campaigning for Mr Grover.
The efforts of the Pradesh BJP leaders and RSS volunteers to persuade them to actively participate in the electioneering, have failed. The former Education Minister and veteran BJP leader, Mr Ram Bilas Sharma, today parried questions on the 'revolt' in the local party unit. He, however, was optimistic and hoped that the matter would be sorted out soon.
The rebel Congress
leader, Mr Subhash Batra, had resigned from the party
when denied ticket by the Congress Working Committee. He
convened a meeting of his supporters on February 6, a day
before the withdrawal of nomination papers, to seek their
advice on his future course of action. The gathering,
which had taken the shape of a public meeting, asked him
to contest as an independent.
HPCC promises free power to
ROHTAK, Feb 10 The Haryana state Congress has promised to provided 50-units of electricity free of cost per month to the families living below the poverty line in the state.
In an election broadcast from the Rohtak station of All India Radio last evening, Haryana Pradesh Congress Committee (HPCC) president Bhupinder Singh Hooda said electricity free of cost would be given for one fan and one bulb in the houses of poor people. For this purpose, a survey would be done for issuing "yellow cards" to the people living below the poverty line in the state. Hooda said adding that the survey would be done without any discrimination.
Mr Hooda declared that all "false" cases related to power would be withdrawn and disconnected power connections restored. Various grievances of power consumers, including those concerning inflated power bills, would be redressed within three months by setting up district-level standing committees, if the Congress came to power in the state Assembly elections slated for February 22 next. The HPCC chief assured that round-the-clock power supply at cheaper rates would be ensured by making the Yamunanagar and other thermal power plant operational.
Mr Hooda promised
constitution of an education commission to avoid
government interference in educational institutions,
construction of a separate capital and high court for
Haryana, improvement in law and order, rationalisation of
tax structure, constitution of a minority commission,
filling of backlog of reserved posts in government
departments, establishment of womens cooperative
banks, removal of anomalies in pay scales of government
employees, strengthening of panchayati raj institutions,
reservation of 80 per cent jobs for Haryana youth in
industries set up in the state and construction of the
SYL, canal besides other promises.
Congress harps on stability
HISAR, Feb 10 Mr O.P. Jindal, the Congress candidate from Hisar today claimed that only his party could provide a stable and viable government which could last for full five years.
Talking to TNS here, Mr Jindal claimed that the history of the past two decades proved that no non-Congress government completed its full term, whether it was led by Mr Devi Lal, Mr Chautala or Mr Bansi Lal.
The industrialist-turned-politician claimed that he was unfazed by the fact that a senior Congress leader, Mr Hari Singh Saini, was contesting as an Independent candidate. He alleged that Independents had no future and people would only vote for candidates of major parties. The Independents contesting from Hisar this time are Mr Hari Singh and Mr Om Prakash Mahajan, the sitting MLA.
The BJP candidate from this constituency, Dr Kamal Gupta, too alleged that Independent candidates did not have any policy or programme.
He was also critical of Mr Jindal, alleging that the latter had changed parties whenever he wanted, without any commitment to policy or programmes. He further alleged that Mr Jindal had not done anything for Hisar even when he was a member of the state legislature or Parliament. Dr Gupta is the only candidate among the four main contestants this time who has not been a member of the assembly or Parliament earlier.
On his part, Mr Hari Singh Saini, a former minister, claimed that Independents would have a decisive say in the formation of the next government.
He claimed that if the Congress high command had acted on the guidelines of the Anthony Committee report and the Pachmari Declaration, he would have got the party ticket.
Mr Mahajan, the other Independent in the fray, also claimed that the Independents would play a decisive role in this election as they did during 1996.
Final list of candidates
AMBALA, Feb 10 The final list of Third Front candidates who are in the electoral fray of the Haryana Assembly elections was released today.
The General Secretary of the All-India Shiromani Akali Dal, Mr Kartar Singh Takkar, said the pending seats would be cleared soon and we are going to reach a consensus on certain constituencies.
According to an AISAD
release, the final list of Third Front
candidates is as follows : Naraingarh Mr Man Singh
Gujjar, Sadhaura Mr Aman Kumar Nagra, Chachrauli,
Jagadhari, Yamuna Nagar pending, Shahbad Mr
Jagir Singh Jainpura, Pundri Mr Raghbir Singh,
Indri Mr Ved Pal, Karnal pending, Jundla
Mr Jaswant Singh, Assandh pending,
Gharounda Rajbir Singh, Panipat Mr Darshan
Singh, Samalkha Rishi Prakash, Noutha Mr
Ranjit Singh, Sonepat Lalit Kumar, Gohana
Kitab Singh Malik, Kalyana pending, Safidon
Kanwal Sharma, Nuh Mohd Assad, Ferozepur Jhirka
Yakub Khan, Sohana pending, Gurgaon
Naresh Chand Jain, Pataudi Mr Om Prakash Chahal,
Ateli Vinod Sharma, Bhiwani Ms Vidya Devi,
Hissar Dr Daya Nand Sharma, Uchana Kalan
pending, Rai Mr Kamal Singh Chouhan, Hassangarh
Ms Saroj Kaur Saini, Barwala Giani Ram
Sarpanch, Sirsa Mukhtiar Singh, Rori
Malkiat Singh, Ratia Mr Atma Singh Gill, Darba
Kalan pending, Ellenabad Sukhdev Singh
Namera, Dabwali Parkash Singh Paladar, Fatehabad
Mr Joginder Singh Virk, Kaithal Dharam Pal,
Thanesar and Nilokheri open, Mullana Vinay
Kumar, Pehowa and Naggal open, Radour Mr
Risal Singh Babain and Rohat Mr Behram Singh
Case of similar candidates
AMBALA, Feb 10 Two Independent candidates, one from Ambala city and one from Ambala Cantt, have similar symbols, similar flags and similar election slogans. Further, both candidates belong to the same caste and religion. Both candidates have also little difference in their ages.
Moreover, both of them were earlier recognised as senior leaders of the Ambala BJP unit and had resigned from the party membership in the election days to protest against the allotment of tickets. Despite being Independent candidates, both are wellknown in their constituencies.
One of them is Mr Anil Vij who is contesting from Ambala Cantt, while the other, Mr Nirmal Vij, is contesting from Ambala city. Both have got the coconut election symbol and the campaign vehicles of both bear yellow flags. Both had filed their nomination papers on the same day and almost at the same time.
Mr Anil Vij has chosen his election slogan Kaam Kiya Hai, Kaam Karenge. Mr Nirmal Vij has picked up almost the same slogan Vikas Kiya hai Vikas Karenge. Generally, both of them wear pyjama-kurta and bandi.
The only difference
between the two is that Mr Anil Vij is the sitting MLA
and is contesting the election for the second time, while
Mr Nirmal Vij is a first timer. It will be interesting to
see whether the election results of both will be similar
Arrest warrants for ex-minister
CHANDIGARH, Feb 10 Cancelling bail and surety bonds of Om Parkash Jain, a former Haryana Minister, who also was a director of Shri Vardhman Overseas Limited, the UT Judicial Magistrate (First Class), Mr Mahander Singh, today issued warrants of arrest for Jain for March 28 in a bounced cheque case.
Pronouncing the orders in the open court, the magistrate observed: "The mere contention that he is an ex-minister of Haryana is no ground to exempt him from his personal appearance whereas the complainant is regularly appearing".
The magistrate observed further: "Keeping in view the act and the conduct of the accused, his bail and surety bonds are cancelled and forfeited to the state. Let warrants of arrest be issued for March 28, 2000, to secure his presence. Accused no. 4 (Sanjay Jain) be also summoned through non-bailable warrants for the date fixed".
Earlier in a complaint under Section 138 of the Negotiable Instruments Act, the complainant, the Small Industries Development Bank of India had alleged that a cheque issued by Shri Vardhman Overseas Ltd was "dishonoured by the banker and was received back with remarks not arranged for".
Counsel for the
complainant had claimed that Jain and other accused were
"liable to be summoned, tried and punished in
accordance with the law" as they, at the time of the
issuance of the cheque, were in charge of the
BJP opposes English as
CHANDIGARH, Feb 10 Notwithstanding the denial by the Punjab Chief Minister, Mr Parkash Singh Badal, the Haryana BJP chief, Mr Om Prakash Grover, today asserted that the Prime Minister, Mr Atal Behari Vajpayee, had assured a delegation of the party that he would convene a meeting of the Punjab and Haryana Chief Ministers to resolve the issue of construction of the SYL canal after the Haryana Assembly elections.
Releasing the manifesto of the Haryana BJP, Mr Grover said here that the long-pending SYL canal issue would be resolved on the pattern of the Cauvery accord. This assurance, he said, was given by Mr Vajpayee when a party delegation, which included all the five Haryana BJP MPs, met him recently.
The manifesto said the BJP withdrew support for the Bansi Lal Government because of the obstinate attitude of the then Chief Minister towards several of its demands like the issue of pending power bills of farmers, abolition of octroi, grant to the Agroha Medical College, auction of plots in mandis and victimisation of employees.
The BJP said it decided to support the Chautala Government when it found that the INLD supremo had a positive attitude towards the BJP manifesto. It highlighted various achievements of the Chautala Government but did not speak of any achievement of the BJP-HVP Government.
The BJP differed from
its electoral partner on the introduction of English from
class one. While the INLD promised in its manifesto that
English would be introduced in schools from class one,
the BJP said it would fight against making English a
Follow ideals of Sir Chhotu
ROHTAK, Feb 10 The Rajasthan Chief Minister, Mr Ashok Gehlot, has asked the youth to work for fulfilment of ideals shown by Late Sir Chhotu Ram.
Speaking at the birth anniversary celebrations of the kisan leader at Chhotu Ram Park here today, Mr Gehlot who was the chief guest, described Sir Chhotu Ram as an apostle of the welfare of farmers and labourers.
He said the silent campaign launched by the kisan leader must be carried on to achieve a casteless society. Sir Chhotu Ram was a leader of the masses and he always worked for the improvement of farmers and landless labourers.
The 'Arya Samaj and its teachings were still relevant and steps should be taken to use these to wipe out social evils. The real homage to Sir Chhotu Ram, would lie in following the principles he lived by.
Capt Inder Singh, the
Lok Sabha member from Rohtak, the Haryana Pradesh
Congress chief, Mr Bhupinder Singh Hooda, a former MP,
Swami Indervesh, and a large number of local residents
were among those who paid homage to Sir Chhotu Ram.
College teachers to stage dharna
YAMUNANAGAR, Feb 10 The Haryana College Teachers Union (HCTU) will stage a dharna in front of the office of the Director Higher Education, Haryana, at Chandigarh tomorrow in protest against the failure of the authorities to concede its demands.
Prof Harbhajan Singh, zonal secretary of the north zone of the All-India Federation of University and College Teachers Organisation (AIFUCTO) and former president of the Haryana College Teachers Union, said here yesterday that the teachers were not being paid for the past three months due to non-payment of grant-in-aid for November, December and January. He said the teachers were facing financial hardships.
workers join Cong
HVP leader joins
panel set up
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