|Saturday, February 26, 2000,
Kangra divided into 4,300 blocks
Lawyers observe black day
Amend Excise Act : police
Hunt on to nab corpns
Swan project cleared
Brothers get life term for murder
girl dies in factory fire
Solan win makes Dhumal
SHIMLA, Feb 25 The Chief Minister, Mr Prem Kumar Dhumal, has become stronger in the BJP set up with his nominee, Mr Rajeev Bindal, winning the Solan Assembly seat today despite the alleged efforts of the other faction to pull him down.
The byelection for the seat had become a question of prestige for Mr Dhumal as the other faction led by the Union Minister, Mr Shanta Kumar,was opposed to the idea of giving the party ticket to Mr Bindal and wanted Mr Mohinder Nath Sofat to be fielded.
The Solan election has also made the BJP independent in the 68 member Vidhan Sabha where its strength has now increased to 35. Earlier, it had to bear the arm twisting by the HVC leader, Mr Sukh Ram, with whose support Mr Dhumal was surviving his government.
The jubilant supporters of Mr Dhumal reached his office in the secretariat as soon as the winning trend of Mr Bindal was set. They greeted each other with "ladoos".
Mr Dhumal was in touch with Solan on his mobile. He went to the Jakhoo temple for thanks giving as soon as the result was declared in favour of his nominee.
Mr Bindal had started on a weak wicket, but gained with Mr Dhumal coming to address a series of election rallies in the constituency. It had become virtually a single handed affair for Mr Dhumal and his team as none of the senior party leaders, including Mr Shanta Kumar or the alliance partner, Mr Sukh Ram came to Solan to campaign.
The detractors of Mr Dhumal as well as the Congress had pinned their hopes on the BJP rebel, Mr Netar Singh, whom they expected to play a spoilsport for Mr Bindal. However, instead of cutting the vote bank of the BJP, the rebel only harmed the Congress candidate, Ms Krishna Mohini, the most.
The Congress party has suffered in its strongholds of Kandaghat, Chail and various other rural areas of the Solan seat. The constituency has been a traditional stronghold of the Congress, but during the past two elections the party's vote bank was shaken. Ms Mohini won the last election with a thin margin of only 26 votes and the current byelection was held following her unseating by the Supreme Court.
Mr Sukh Ram had also queered the pitch right in the beginning by making his own nominee, Mr Haminder Thakur, file his nomination papers. Later, he made him to withdraw papers.
Mr Sofat, who was a hot contender for the BJP ticket as he had fought the case for unseating of Ms Mohini right up to the Supreme Court, also did not campaign for Mr Bindal. Mr Sofat has represented the constituency twice.
Although Mr Bindal has won the seat with a good margin of 3,537 votes, but the election has once again exposed the growing factionalism within the ruling BJP. Insiders point out that the groupism will again be reflected in the organisational elections which are scheduled to be held in May.
The election has also indicated that while the BJP has been on a gaining spree during the past two years, the Congress and the HVC were the losers. The strength of the Congress has been reduced to 28 from the 31 which it won in the Assembly elections in 1998 and the HVC was down to 3 as its 2 legislators had joined the BJP.
Beaming with joy, before leaving for Delhi, Mr Dhumal described the victory of Mr Bindal as a "positive vote" for the 23 month performance of his government and also endorsement of the policies and programmes.
Kangra divided into 4,300
DHARAMSALA, Feb 25 A total of 4,300 enumeration blocks have been created in Kangra district to carry out the work of undertaking census operations-2001.
In order to carry out the task in a time-bound manner, officers of Kangra district were imparted training by the Directorate of Census Operations. Over a 100 officers, including ADM, DRO, SDMs, Tehsildars, Naib Tehsildars and Executive officers of the municipal committees, attended the training programme. To carry out the census task in the 4,300 enumeration blocks, and a total of 2,600 enumerators and supervisors have been entrusted with the responsibility.
The Director, Census Operations, Mr R.L. Bisotra, while addressing the participants at the training programme, said that census-2001, shall be the foundation for all future macro and micro-level planning in the state. He stated that the census operations would be done in two phases. The first phase would begin from April 17 to May 6, 2000 in the general areas and from June 15, to July 4, 2000 in the snow-bound areas. The basic purpose of the house-listing operations was to determine as to where people were living.
During the second phase, the actual enumeration would be conducted from February 9 to February 28, with the revisional round from March 1, to March 5, 2001, with the reference date being March 1, for the general areas. The Multhan subtehsil, comprising the Bara Bhangal and Chhota Bhangal areas of the district, have been identified as snow-bound and synchronous areas, while the rest of Kangra would be treated as general area.
The previous census was
conducted in 1991. In Himachal Pradesh, the operations
were being conducted under the supervision of Director of
Census Operations. All Deputy Commissioners have been
appointed as Principal Census Officers and the ADMs as
the District Census Officers.
Amend Excise Act : police
DHARAMSALA, Feb 25 The Kangra police has suggested suitable amendments in the Excise Act, in older to avoid burden of crores of rupees on the state exchequer.
According to sources, the SSP Kangra, Mr K.C. Sadyal, has sent a letter to the government through the Deputy Commissioner, in this regard.
As per a survey conducted by the police in Kangra, more than 7,000 cases pertaining to violation of excise laws are pending before the various district courts. This number was 12,000, on December, 31, 1998. From the period between 1988 to September, 1999 conviction was given in only 1121 cases under the Excise Act. Only 116 persons convicted under the Act were sentenced. In 445 cases fines upto Rs 100 were imposed, in 521 cases fine of Rs 500 was imposed. So far there has been conviction in 11 cases, where the sentence was imprisonment up to one month and in 28 cases the imprisonment exceeded the period of one month.
According to police sources, the state government spends more than Rs 15,000 per case and if the figures for the entire state are computed, the amount will run into crores. On the other hand the quantum of fines recovered is negligible.
There is a general
feeling that the police force is so much involved in
these small cases that it is hardly left with any time to
handle more serious cases. The police has, as such
suggested that either these cases should be withdrawn or
the police should be given the power to compound these
Lawyers observe black day
SHIMLA, Feb 25 Functioning of judicial courts in the state remained paralysed for the second consecutive day today as lawyers observed a black day in protest against the unprovoked lathi charge on their agitating colleagues at New Delhi yesterday.
The protesters held a demonstration at the district courts here and demanded action against the officers responsible for the lathi charge. Similar demonstrations were held at various district and subdivisional headquarters. The call for observing "black day" was given by the Bar Council of India.
Mr Sunil Chauhan, Vice-President of the Shimla Bar Association, said that the lawyers would start an indefinite strike if the Law Commission failed to invite the Bar Council of India for talks to discuss the Amendments to the Code of Civil Procedure and the Indian Advocates Act.
Members of the Himachal Administrative Tribunal Bar Association also observed strike to protest against the police atrocities on their colleagues. They decided to boycott the proceedings of the tribunal tomorrow.
Mr Kaul Singh, General Secretary of the Pradesh Congress Committee, and a former Speaker of Himachal Pradesh Sabha, condemned the high handedness of the police and urged the government to withdraw the amendments carried out in the Code of Civil Procedure.
He said that the proposed amendments to the Indian Advocates Act to enable foreign lawyers to practice in India has exposed the capitalist face of the BJP-RSS combine as intrusion of foreign advocates would put further burden on the poor litigants.
Reports of lawyers
strike were also received from Fatehgarh Sahib, Hamirpur,
Jalandhar, Jagadhri, Kapurthala, Ludhiana, Pathankot and
Yamunanagar. The work in courts remained paralysed at
most of these places.
Hunt on to nab corpns
PALAMPUR, Feb 25 The local police is making all sort efforts to trace the promoters of a company, the H.P., R & A Development Corporation.
It had advertised for over 800 posts in different cadres like assistant managers, account assistant, computer operators, junior/senior assistants and drivers etc in a leading Hindi daily this week and had asked the applicants to submit a demand draft for Rs 250 with every application. The corporation had given its address with its head office at Palampur. The last date for receiving the applications is March 31.
Mr Virender Sharma, DSP, said neither such a company existed at Palampur nor it was registered with the Registrar of Companies. The aim behind the publication of this advertisement was only hoodwink unemployed youth. The police had not so far been able to locate the office of the company in the town. Inquiries made from the office of the Hindi daily revealed that the advertisement had been released at Kulu by one of the promoters of the company, but the agent concerned of the newspapers had not yet recognised the person concerned. It was learnt that a newspaper reporter from Joginder Nagar had sponsored this advertisement.
Meanwhile, the postal authorities have started receiving hundred of envelops carrying applications along with bank drafts. But there has been no claimant for this mail so far. The police has directed the postal authorities not to deliver this mail to anyone without their permission.
The DSP said the
possibility of involvement of postal employees could not
be ruled out since the company had given its address as
Head Post Office, Palampur. A police party had been sent
to Kulu to trace the persons who had issued the
Swan project cleared
SHIMLA, Feb 25 The Centre has finally approved the Swan river channelisation project which had been hanging fire for the past 15 years.
The Union Ministry of Environment and Forests, cleared the Rs 102.71 crore project which will protect 2260 hectares of agricultural lands from floods. Earlier, the technical advisory committee of the Ministry of Water Resources had given its nod to the project subject to clearance by the Ministry of Environment and Forests.
A government spokesman said that the project now had full technical clearance from the Government of India. The Swan river, which caused havoc in the Una region by eroding vast tracts of agricultural land, had come to be known as the "sorrow of Una". Under the project of flood protection works would be executed at critical points.
The project also help
reclaim 1,000 hectares of land. Multifarious activities
relating to fisheries, agriculture, horticulture, animal
husbandry and forestry etc would also be undertaken under
this project. The government of Himachal Pradesh had
already kept a provision of Rs 3 crore for the
implementation of this project during the Ninth Five-Year
Brothers get life term for murder
CHAMBA, Feb 25 Mr J.L. Gupta, Sessions Judge, Chamba, today convicted Kheti Ram and his brother Chet Ram, residents of Maghot village in Churah subdivision, in a murder case.
Chaman a resident of the same area was killed on January 13, 1999, by the two brothers. They were awarded life term and asked to pay a fine of Rs 5000 failing which they would have to undergo two months of imprisonment each.
The two were further
sentenced to imprisonment for three months for the
offence under Section 323 and asked to pay a fine of Rs
1,000 each or further undergo simple imprisonment for a
month . Both sentences run concurrently.
4-year girl dies in
PARWANOO, Feb 25 A fire broke out in a factory today at 3 p.m. in Sector-I here, leaving a four-year-old girl dead and an employee injured.
The Deputy Superintendent of Police and the SHO of the local police station reached the spot.
Insulation of poly puff foam, which is highly inflammable, is manufactured in the factory.
The family of the manager of the factory, Mr Chopra stays on the first floor of the factory. His four-year-old daughter was trapped in a room full of smoke. The room was broke open and the child girl brought out and taken to local ESI Hospital where doctor on duty declared her brought dead, said the DSP.
Another worker of the factory was also taken out from the first floor and admitted to the hospital. His condition is stable and out of danger.
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