|Thursday, March 23, 2000,
Cabinet assails carnage
crisis over: Badal
for second green revolution
Budget, says CPI
offices to be linked with CMO
Sahni told to reply on March 24
of Sikhs condemned
cautions govt on Karmapa issue
by RTP worker continues
Mubarak, Sheesh Mahal losing glory
of BKU activist sought
of spurious drugs to be checked
vows to remove water logging
orders soon, says Badal
upkeep of Punjab Bhavan irks MLAs
Hola Mohalla pilgrims injured
cleared for cricket academy
plea against illegal trade
Singh Dhillon dead
notices to 16 officials
paramour held for mans murder
hired to finish sisters kin
injured in firing incident
bandh on March 29
schedule of GND University
Punjab Cabinet assails carnage
CHANDIGARH, March 22 The Punjab Council of Ministers today passed a unanimous resolution, condemning the brutal killing of innocent civilians in Anantnag district of J&K on March 20.
The council expressed its deep shock and grief over the gruesome incident and asked for fullest security, relief and rehabilitation of the affected victims.
The ministers unanimously endorsed the announcement of the Chief Minister at Chatti Singhpura, yesterday to the effect that the next of kin of the deceased be provided relief by the Punjab Government at the rate of Rs 2.5 lakh each and those seriously injured Rs 50,000 each.
The council also cleared the proposal from the Excise and Taxation department for an amendment in Section 20 of the Punjab General Sales Tax Act, 1948, for making a provision of deposit of surety amount 25 per cent in appeal cases filed in tribunal courts of law.
It was felt that the existing provision under section 20 (5) of the Punjab General Sales Tax Act, 1948, rendered the remedy of appeal illusory, if the dealer was made to pay 100 per cent of this amount and allowed vastly disproportionate discretion to the authorities concerned. Therefore, it was felt imperative to eliminate discretion and also to make right to appeal effective and curb the existing tendency to file superfluous appeals through suitable legislation.
Further, the council cleared the proposal from the Excise and Taxation department for an amendment in sections 13, 24, 24-A and 26 of the Punjab General Sales Tax Act, 1948, through suitable legislation for ensuring the issue of a cash memorandum or bill serially numbered from duly bound cash memorandum or bill, except in case of computerised cash memo or bill.
Earlier, the council had decided that some very harsh provisions of Section 24 and Section 24-A of the Act, particularly, regarding prosecution be done away with. It was simultaneously felt that penalties prescribed for various offences may have to be increased instead. However, it has now been deliberated in detail that instead of new retrograde coercive and punitive steps, the enforcement of the presently prescribed penalties in right earnest in case of pronounced delinquency in the form of evasion would bring about positive results in totality.
The Punjab Council also
approved the proposal of the Excise and Taxation
department to give relaxation in the existing provisions
of Section 26 of Punjab General Sales Tax Act, 1948, to
enable information centres run contractually through
private parties to have operational access to information
regarding the import and exports of goods from Punjab.
Panthic crisis over: Badal
BHAINI SAHIB (Ludhiana), March 22 The president of the Shiromani Akali Dal and Chief Minister, Mr Parkash Singh Badal, has claimed that the crisis in the Panth, arising out of the excommunication of the SGPC chief, Bibi Jagir Kaur, Jathedar of Takht Kesgarh Sahib, Prof Manjit Singh, Jathedar of Takht Damdama Sahib, Giani Kewal Singh and Head Granthi of Akal Takht, Giani Bhagwan Singh, was almost over.
Mr Badal was talking to mediapersons after participating in the Hola Mohalla celebrations organised by the Namdhari sect here, around 25 km from Ludhiana, today.
The SAD President expressed the hope that things would soon return to normal and said parleys with both Giani Puran Singh and Bibi Jagir Kaur, were on to tide away the remaining problems.
In an oblique reference to his good handling of the issue by keeping Bibi Jagir Kaur and the other three Sikh high priests away from the Hola Mohalla celebrations and Anandpur Sahib recently, Mr Badal said. Our efforts have already begun showing signs of improvement.
Answering queries about his view of the security arrangements for Sikhs in Jammu and Kashmir, following the massacre of 35 Sikh there, Mr Badal expressed his satisfaction after a visit to Chatisinghpora yesterday.
He said that he had been assured of the security arrangements by the Jammu and Kashmir Government and informed that he would again go to the site of carnage on March 31 to participate in the bhog ceremony of the deceased.
addressing the gathering, the Chief Minister said Rs 10
crore project for the Bhaini Sahib-Rayian Development
Board submitted to him earlier, had already been
forwarded to the district administration. He said he
would also prevail upon the administration for the quick
expedition of the development projects in the two
Kanwaljit for second green
CHANDIGARH, March 22 The Punjab Finance Minister, Capt Kanwaljit Singh, today presented a special case for ushering in the second green revolution in the state, while presenting the Budget for 2000-01 in the Vidhan Sabha.
Unveiling the major initiative with a total plan of Rs 200 crore to break stagnation in the farm sector, he stressed the need for a second push to agriculture.
The proposed mission is to give an second impetus to the farm sector in the new millennium, Capt Kanwaljit Singh said and was aimed to make farmers market leaders on a global level. The need for such a measured was because of the plight of farmers due to an imbalance of trade in agriculture.
Among the proposals there is one to introduce technology in farm and allied sectors, besides providing incentives to those who opt for diversification and take to dairying, beekeeping, etc. Incentives will be on a par with the industry.
A major extension education, programme is one the anvil, the idea being to encourage and explore potential for exports to create stability of demand and prices.
Punjab Agricultural University, Ludhiana, will get all necessary financial assistance to conduct research in new fields, particularly biotechnology and genetic engineering,post-harvest technology and handling of produce. With this in view the existing plan allocation of all departments concerned has been raised and an additional outlay of Rs 19.83 crore has been provided for the agriculture sector.
A dedicated fund of Rs 30.67 crore has also been created for the allied sector with the allocation for dairy and animal husbandry.
Another area which worries the government is that the contribution of agriculture, which is the mainstay of the people has declined faster than the population which depended on agriculture in terms of state domestic product. The proposals make a reference to the World Trade Organisations implications and said the same can be overlooked only at our own peril.
Capt Kanwaljit Singh criticised the successive Congress governments for the lack of a coherent agricultural policy, which added to woes of farmers. On several occasions the government has failed to provide minimum support price despite the cost of cultivation of major crops having gone up several times.
He further said the
thrust of the mission was diversification of
crops by promoting cultivation of maize, pulses (summer
moong) and green manure, mushrooms, beekeeping, etc.
Another major thrust includes the establishment of
feed processing industries. Special emphasis
was on agro-processing projects like dehydrated and
frozen vegetables in the joint sector.
Anti-poor Budget, says CPI
CHANDIGARH, March 22 The CPI has described the Punjab Budget, which was presented in the Vidhan Sabha today by the Finance Minister, Capt Kanwaljit Singh, as disappointing and anti-people, especially poor.
Commenting on the Budget proposals immediately soon after presentation in the House, Mr Hardev Arshi, a CPI MLA said that there was only Rs 20 crore increase in the Annual Plan outlay for the next financial year against the current financial years figure of Rs 2680 crore.
In fact, in real terms there is no increase in the Annual Plan outlay if the inflation rate is calculated, he added. Saying that the Punjab Government has also fell in the liberalisation trap, it has started slashing subsidies from the core services sector. People of the state would feel the heat of the Budget in three or four months from now when the state government withdraw all sorts of subsidies and jacked up the rates of facilities provided under the services sector. People should be prepared for a big jolt which they would face in the form of increased charges for the sewer system, drinking water and health services.
He said the Punjab Government was running away from providing basic amenities to the people and saying goodbye to the social welfare state. Already a lot of facilities provided to the people like free bus travel to women had been withdrawn and the government was set to withdraw schemes meant for Dalits like the Shangun scheme, he added.
The government has not
come out with a proposal to bail out the farming
community from a heavy burden of debt and it has also not
made any provision for ex-gratia payment to families of
farmers who committed suicides in past months.
Staff call it
CHANDIGARH, March 22 The Joint Action Committee of Punjab and UT Employees has in a statement dubbed the Budget presented in the Punjab Vidhan Sabha as anti-employees and anti-people.
As a protest against this back-breaking Budget, the employees will hold a rally and a march to the Vidhan Sabha on March 28.
Mr Sajjan Singh, chairman of the committee, in a signed statement, said the Budget proposals on downsizing of the government and in respect of public sector undertakings was an anti-employee act. Even the Sikhia karmi scheme was criticised.
Similar sentiments have been expressed by the Punjab Mulazam Sangarsh Committee, Punjab, convenor, Mr Ranbir Dhillon, who said besides over Rs 100 crore tax burden, the Budget was the worst for government staff. The Budget was silent on government employees various demands.
On the other hand, Mr
Mahesh Inder Singh Grewal, MLA, and a former minister,
described the Budget as one which has betrayed the
commitments made earlier to the people by the SAD. The
Budget was also anti-Punjabis and anti-poor,
particularly, the farmers. This was least expected from
the ruling party, which forgot its own promises to the
people who gave them a massive mandate.
DCs offices to be
linked with CMO
FATEHGARH SAHIB, March 22 All offices of deputy commissioners in the state will be connected with the Chief Ministers Office (CMO) through fibre optic wire under the wide area network scheme. Similarly, a management-information system is being developed at the Chief Ministers Office where all information of the state will be available to the Chief Minister at the click of a mouse button, said Mr Ramesh Inder Singh, Principal Secretary to the Chief Minister, while addressing a gathering after inaugurating the computerisation of the registration work at Khamano subdivision in the district today.
He said Mr Parkash Singh Badal had directed all deputy commissioners to fully computerise the registration work by the next financial year. He said it would bring more transparency, efficiency in the working of the government and moreover, it will curb the menace of corruption and eliminate delays in the registration work.
He further said the government had decided to introduce computer as a subject in schools and colleges and engage private companies to impart computer education at minimum rates.
Addressing the gathering, Mr V.K. Janjua, Deputy Commissioner, Fatehgarh Sahib, highlighted the achievements of the district in the field of information technology. He said the district was leading in the state in this field as the revenue record of 375 villages of the 450 had been fed into a computer, whereas Ludhiana district had yet to start the work on the project.
He further said the work on digitisation of cadastral maps would be started soon. He requested that the government should amend the stamp and the Registration Acts to provide a legal frame work to computerisation of registration. He said a comprehensive survey would be conducted of all immovable properties in the district and minimum floor prices of these properties would be fixed and fed into a computer.
Gosain, Sahni told to reply on
PHILLAUR, March 22 The Five-member Disciplinary Committee of the Punjab BJP has asked two dissident party MLAs, Mr Satpaul Gosain and Mr Jagdish Sahni, to give their reply and clarification about alleged violation of party discipline on March 24.
This was announced by the Punjab BJP chief, Mr Daya Singh Sodhi, while talking to newsmen here today. Mr Sodhi clarified that these two MLAs will remain suspended from the primary membership of the BJP till the disciplinary committee is satisfied about their conduct.
He condemned the massacre of Sikhs in South Kashmir and said a high-level BJP committee headed by him would soon visit Kashmir to assess the situation.
elections, Mr Sodhi said that the returning officer, Prof
Brijlal Rinwa, presided over a meeting in this regard
today. Mr Sodhi said that he would soon meet the chief
minister to discuss the appointment of chairpersons of
Massacre of Sikhs condemned
JALANDHAR: Shops, business and bank establishments rolled down shutters temporarily at several places in the city today as hundreds of activists of various factions of the Akalis marched through the city shouting anti-Pakistan slogans and burnt effigies of the Pakistan military ruler at two places in protest against massacre of Sikhs.
A stray incident of stone-pelting in Sanjay Gandhi Market created a scare among shopkeepers who rolled down shutters as a precaution when a group of protestors who had split earlier, passed through the market and held dharna at busy island of traffic on the GT Road at BMC Chowk.
Later, Tohra loyalists led by Mr Jagjit Singh Gauba and Mr Sarbjit Singh Wariana, presidents of the partys district urban and rural wings, submitted a memorandum to Additional Deputy Commissioner Parveen Kumar, protesting against the Pakistans ISI alleged hand in the massacre.
Meanwhile, the Punjab Youth Congress (PYC) has demanded that the Jammu and Kashmir Government should be sacked for its failure to protect minorities in the valley.
Describing the massacre of 35 Sikhs by armed miscreants near Anantnag as an act of cowardice, Mr Davinder Singh Babbu and Mr Ramesh Bunty, PYC chief and President of its district unit, respectively, said the J and K Government had utterly failed to protect the minorities in the state for which it had no right to stay in power.
The PYC chief said a jatha would visit the village to express sympathies with the bereaved families.
LUDHIANA: Mr Atikur Rehman, president, Indian Muslim Council, condemned the killings.
Members of the council staged a dharna at the Jama Masjid and blamed Pakistan for this act. The council will observe March 24 as black day in Punjab.
KAPURTHALA: Members of the District Bar Association here condemned the killings in Kashmir. The lawyers observed two minutes silence to pray for the departed souls.
PHILLAUR: The general secretary of the Anjuman Ehtadul Islamia, Committee, Sayeed Nazir Ahmed, while condemning the massacre has appealed the people to maintain communal harmony.
The Lok Bhalai Party central executive committee member, Mr Nand Kishore Chopra, and the Punjab Food and Supplies Minister, Mr Madan Mohan Mittal, have condemned the killings in Kashmir.
BATHINDA: Mr Chiranji Lal Garg, chief patron, Punjab Pardesh Aggarwal Sabha, Mr Harminder Singh Jassi, general secretary, PPCC, Mr Gurdas Girdhar, executive member, PPCC, and Mr Kewal Krishan Aggarwal, general secretary, DCC (I), today condemned the massacre.
Mr Girdhar, has appealed the Prime Minister to urge the US President, Mr Bill Clinton, to cancel his proposed visit to Pakistan as it had been established that Pakistan was sponsoring the militancy in India.
FEROZEPORE: The Faridkot District Congress Committee (DCC) president, Mr S.K. Gupta strongly condemned the killing of 36 Sikhs at Chatti Singhpura village in Anantnag district, has said that Pakistan wanted to create a rift between Sikhs and Muslims at it had made an unsuccessful attempt to divide Hindus and Sikhs in Punjab in the past.
Talking here today, Mr
Gupta added, that incident had proved that the Vajpayee
Government had failed to check terrorism in Jammu and
Kashmir. He urged the US President Bill Clinton to
declare Pakistan a terrorist country. The recent
incident is a sufficient proof for Clinton that Pakistan
has been indulging in terrorist activities in
India, he said.
Tohra to visit carnage scene
CHANDIGARH, March 22 Senior Akali leaders led by former SGPC chief and a member of the Rajya Sabha, Mr Gurcharan Singh Tohra, will visit Chatti Singhpora village in Anantnag district of J and K where Sikhs were killed on March 20 by militants.
Mr Tohra will be
accompanied by another Akali member of the Rajya Sabha,
Mr Sukhdev Singh Libra, Dr Jaspal Singh from Delhi, Mr
Harvinder Singh Sarna and Mr Manjit Singh. They will also
meet the J and K Chief Minister, Dr Farooq Abdullah, and
the police chief, Mr Gurbachan Jagat.
Bhatia cautions govt on Karmapa
AMRITSAR, March 22 The former External Affairs Minister, Mr R.L. Bhatia, today sought a clear-cut policy statement from the Centre on the Karmapa issue which might sour the relations between India and China.
Talking to the TNS here today, Mr Bhatia who took a personal initiative in the 80s to bring about rapprochement between the two neighbours felt that the present government was creating hurdles in the way of smooth relations.
Mr Bhatia claimed that the government must tackle the mysterious arrival of the Tibetan monk and his stay here with utmost care leaving no chance for complication. He said India must ask Karmapa to and return to China as it would help clear misunderstanding about our intentions.
Fast by RTP worker continues
ROPAR, March 22 The fast unto death by Mr Kashmira Singh of the Ropar Thermal Project Contractor Worker Union today entered its seventh day. The fast is to press for the acceptance, of workers demands, including the implementation of Punjab Governments November 27, 1998, notification regarding the abolition of contract labour system in the plant, absorption of the workers into the PSEB, and the issuance of EPF pass books to them.
The fast unto death by another two workers Mr Kashi Nath and Mr Uma Shankar Singh today entered its second day. Anil Kumar and Kashmira Singh had jointly began fast unto death on March 16. But Anil Kumar was forcibly shifted to the local civil hospital on health grounds by the authorities on March 20.
Mr Kashi Nath who is also deputy general secretary of the union, alleged today Anil Kumars health was good when he had been forcibly admitted to the hospital by the administrative authorities. He alleged that the thermal authorities with the help of district administration wanted to weaken the morale of the workers. But the workers would not hesitate to give any sacrifice as they had already proved by not accepting their wages for January and February through the Labour Contractors who were involved in the EPF embezzlement case, he added.
Mr Kashi Nath also said that no doctor would be allowed to examine the workers observing fast unto death at the plant. He said their fast would continue till the acceptance of their demands.
He also alleged that the thermal authorities had not lodged an FIR against the labour contractors involved in the EPF embezzlement case as some of the officers seemed to be hand in glove with the contractors.
Meanwhile, the condition of Mr Kashmira Singh is deteriorating as his fast today entered seventh day. He has reportedly lost weight while his blood pressure is rising.
Mr Satish Mittal, Chief Engineer, said that he had not taken up the issue of implementation of November 27, 1998, notification with the PSEB as the matter was in the high court. He said the authorities were waiting the decision of the court in this regard.
Mr Mittal said the PSEB
was ready to pay the wages to the workers for January and
February but they were not accepting the same. However,
he clarified that the EPF of workers could not be
deposited in the PSEBs EPF account number as they
were the employees of the contractors.
Quila Mubarak, Sheesh Mahal
PATIALA, March 22 The State Archaeology and Conservation Department cries hoarse over lack of funds to restore the glory of Quila Mubarak, Sheesh Mahal, painted chambers and artefacts rusting in stores in the city, but a huge quantity of material and chemicals required for conservation, lying unused for many years, tell a different story altogether.
The material, including bitumen sheets, wood, crushed stones and cement, bought for protecting the crumbling edifice of the over 300-year-old Quila Mubarak and costing the public exchequer a few crores is dumped in dark dingy store rooms of the old fort. While the quality of bitumen sheets and wood is on the wane, the walls of the storerooms stuffed with it have also developed cracks, becoming a major threat to the monuments safety.
Apart from this a number of special machines and chemicals bought by the department for protecting painted chambers in Quila Mubarak, Sheesh Mahal, Kali Devi Temple and a number of other historical artefacts like weapons, ivory items and sculptures are also lying unused and forgotten in the store rooms.
These equipments include a vacuum hot table machine for oil paintings bought in 1990. A vacuum clang in 1980 for strengthening the fragile artefacts. A thermohydrograph to check humidity of painted chambers and to control it has been rarely used. Besides, these several chemicals have lost their power for want of non-use over the years. An inquiry report done a few years ago even claimed that layers of fungus have grown over the chemicals.
The departments failure to make optimum use of these materials has not only resulted in loss of money spent on them but has also amounted to loss of scores of art abjects that could have been saved.
A Tribune investigation reveals that a tourist visiting this erstwhile princely state goes home marvelling at the artefacts shown in the Sheesh Mahal and weapons in Quila Mubarak museum, hardly realising that he has been shown only 20 per cent of the rich treasure while the remaining lies rusted in store rooms for want of care and conservation.
Interestingly, a few internal inquiries have also been conducted about the unused material and chemicals but no one has been punished. Reports point to the inept handling of the matter by the local staff. Unfortunately, it was also revealed that the staff, instead of working as a team to preserve the historical things and attract more tourists, was indulging in infighting. Officials contacted for verification traded charges at each other.
interestingly, remains the same old lack of funds. Mr
Sucha Singh Chauhan, State Archaeological Engineer, in
charge of conservation, acknowledged the less use of the
material. He said the bitumen felt sheets bought for
protecting roofs of Quila Mubarak has not been used
because there was no money for buying tarlok bitumen
solution to mix with the sheets. He said there were no
funds for the last three years.
Release of BKU activist sought
RAMPURAPHUL (Bathinda), March 22 Mr Lachman Singh Sewawala, Secretary of the Punjab Khet Majdoor Union and Mr Sukhdev Singh Kokrikalan, Vice-President, BKU (EKTA), has alleged that the police has implicated an activist of the BKU (EKTA) Mr Balwinder Singh Fauji, in a false criminal case.
In a joint press note issued here, they alleged that a police party entered into the house of Balwinder Singh after jumping over the wall in Jethuke village on March 20. The police party had beaten up Balwinder Singh and his wife Jasmel Kaur.
They alleged that both Balwinder Singh and his wife suffered injuries. Residents of three villages surrounding Jethuke village got orders for the medical examination of Jasmel Kaur from the Judicial Magistrate and medical examination report had revealed five injuries on her body.
They demanded that Balwinder Singh and other activists of BKU (EKTA) should be released immediately without any condition and a case against guilty police officials should be registered.
Mr Amrit Pal Sharma, SHO, Rampuraphul, however denied that Balwinder Singh was implicated in a false case. He said he was wanted in three criminal cases and a police party raided his house to arrest him.
Mr Sharma said Balwinder
Singh suffered injuries when he jumped from stairs to
evade arrest. Jasmel Kaur suffered injuries when she hit
herself against a door. Balwinder Singh had been sent to
jail by the Judicial Magistrate, he added.
Manufacture of spurious drugs to be
PHILLAUR, March 22 The Punjab Health Department soon will organise operation clean administration, operation clean drugs and clean operation of foods.
This was announced by Punjab Health Minister Dr Baldev Chawla, while talking to reporters here today.
He said that manufacture and sale of spurious drugs would not be allowed in the state and stern action taken against the culprits and drug inspector concerned would be responsible if anybody found manufacturing and selling spurious drugs.
He asked all chemists to sell all drugs with proper bills. The minister said that the government would honour the persons who would provide information about the sale and manufacture of spurious drugs. Dr Chawla said that the Health Department would set up state-level control room at Chandigarh to solve peoples problems, complaints and grievances about the department. He said that anybody could fax his problem at fax no 0172-740266, which would be solved within 48 hours positively. This control room will start working from April 1, 2000.
He promised better medical facilities in government hospitals. He asked the doctors to remain present during duty hours and adopt good behaviour towards patients. He warned stern action against absentee doctors. The Health Minister claimed that all cheques of reimbursement of workers in ESI hospitals would be distributed within 15 days.
Govt vows to remove water
CHANDIGARH, March 22 The Punjab Irrigation Minister, Mr Janmeja Singh Sekhon, today assured the members concerned in the Assembly that the government would make all-out efforts to remove water logging in the remaining areas, including Mansa district.
Answering question put by Mr Ajit Inder Singh Mofar in the House, Mr Sekhon said that water logging had been removed from the Muktsar belt by spending Rs 43.89 crore. Several MLAs, including Mr Sher Singh Jalalabad and Mr Baldev Singh Khaiala laid stress on removing water logging in their areas as well.
Mr Parkash Singh Badal assured the House that the Vigilance Bureau would complete the enquiry against V.K. Mahajan, an Assistant Engineer in a government undertaking, would be completed within a year and a report regarding action taken would be sent to the Speaker, Mr Charanjit Singh Atwal, and to Mr Hardev Arshi, who asked a supplementary question in this connection.
Mr Satpal Gosain and Mr Jagdish Sahni tried their best to pin down the Local Bodies Minister, Mr Balramji Dass Tandon, regarding promotions of Executive Officers and secretaries as Assistant Commissioners and Deputy Directors from January 1, 1997 to date, but Mr Tandon said there was nothing wrong in the promotions. Asked whether departmental promotion committees meeting was held to promote such officers, he said members concerned should give him notice for asking the question and he would give his reply.
Both Mr Gosain and Mr
Sahni, who belong to the BJP, specifically asked whether
any violation of the high courts order had been
committed as regards the use of vehicles. Mr Tandon
replied that no violation of the courts order had
Appointment orders soon, says Badal
CHANDIGARH, March 22 Mr Parkash Singh Badal, Punjab Chief Minister, assured the House that all remaining selected candidates in allied services of the PCS would be given appointment orders within a month.
He said that no one would be ignored as for as issuance of appointment letters were concerned.
Poor upkeep of Punjab Bhavan
CHANDIGARH, March 22 Cutting across party lines, members of the Punjab Vidhan Sabha expressed concern over the deplorable condition of rooms and poor service in Punjab Bhavan in Delhi.
Raising the issue, Mr Rakesh Pande, a Congress MLA, said in the House that torn towels were provided to those who stayed in Punjab Bhavan. He urged Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal to visit the bhavan to know the reality. Other members also expressed similar sentiments.
Mr Badal, accepting the
plea of various members, proposed to constitute a
committee of the House to visit Punjab Bhavan for doing
the needful. He also said that the Chief Secretary would
accompany the committee. Mr Manjit Singh Calcutta asked
Mr Badal what action the Government had taken on the
report submitted by a committee to the House highlighting
very disturbing aspects of the functioning of Punjab
20 Hola Mohalla pilgrims
ROPAR, March 22 As many as 20 pilgrims were injured, seven of them seriously, when the tractor-trailer in which they were travelling overturned due to brake failure at Bharatgarh village, about 20 km from here, yesterday.
All injured pilgrims belonged to Takhanwadh Nawan village in Moga district. There were about 45 pilgrims, including 15 children, in the trailer who were returning from Anandpur Sahib after participating in the Hola Mohalla celebrations.
Decks cleared for cricket
PATIALA, March 22 Decks have been cleared for a new state-of-the-art cricket academy at Dhruv Pandov Stadium here which is to be opened on April 1. The academy will be run on a no-profit-no-loss basis.
This was said by Mr R.P. Pandove, Honorary Secretary of the Patiala Cricket Association. He also said a need was felt to open an academy to spot and groom talent, besides channelising it in a professional manner. Mr Pandove said the academy would be run by the Dhruv Pandove Cricket Trust. He said at the academy, coaching would be given to youngsters in the age group of 12 to 14 on scientific lines, for which, services of sport scientists of the NIS would be requisitioned.
The academy would provide young cricketers with balls, net practice facilities, a brand new bowling machine and a slip-catching craddle, apart from other coaching gear. Foreign coaches and players would also be invited to train these youngsters.
Mr Pandove said any
youngster who practised her would in a way, become a
property of the academy. If any youngster
played for his state in the under-16 Interstate Vijay
Merchant Trophy, he would be exempted from paying the
PFA plea against illegal
LUDHIANA, MARCH 22 The local chapter of the People for Animals (PFA) has asked the District Magistrate and the SSP Jagraon, to take action against the alleged illegal trade of cattle for slaughter.
In a Press note issued here yesterday, Mr Arun Jain, Office Secretary, urged that action under the Prevention of Cruelty to Animal Act, 1960 and the transport of Animals Rules Act, 1978, be taken against those involved in this trade.
Mr Jain informed that
they had received information from the Jind chapter of
the PFA that it had stalled the export of cattle from
Jind to West Bengal, allegedly because cattle sent to
West Bengal was being butchered and sold as beef.
Paul Singh Dhillon dead
CHANDIGARH, March 22 Mr Paul Singh Dhillon, a former Chief Engineer (Irrigation), Punjab, died at his residence in Sector 18 here today.
He was 80. Mr Dhillon is survived by three daughters.
After retirement in
1979, he contributed a great deal to public life in the
region. His two books-Tale of Two Rivers and Water
Management and Resources in NW India- are important
references on the subject.
Show-cause notices to 16 officials
FATEHGARH SAHIB, March 22 Though today was only one of two working days in the ten-day mega-holiday bonanza of the Punjab Government few officers were found present during a surprise checking today by the Deputy Commissioner.
LUDHIANA, March 22 Five sub-divisions of the sub-registrars office in Khanna, Jagraon, Samrala, Payal and Raikot were connected to the computer network by Jathedar Sewa Singh Sekhwan, Revenue Minister, Punjab, here today. He then, announced that Ludhiana district was the first fully computerised collectorate in India.
Later addressing a meeting of commissioners and deputy commissioners organised here to chalk out the detailed programme for computerisation in all districts, Mr Sekhwan urged the officers to bring about total transparency by plugging chances of corruption in the Revenue Department and civil administration. The Ludhiana model of fully computerised administration would be ensured in all the districts of the State during the current financial year. In the first phase, from next month, the offices of sub-registrars in all the sub-divisions of the State were being computerised to execute the land sale deeds, affidavits and wills on the spot using the locally-developed software.
The revenue minister further informed that under the second phase the village-level revenue records would be computerised and the farmers would be given pass-books containing the details of their property, so that the chances of corruption and harassment at the patwari-level could be eliminated. He claimed that by making amendment in the Land Sale Deed Registration Act to ban the execution of deeds in other cities of the country, the state would be benefited substantially by way of increased revenue.
Mrs Shyama Mann, Financial Commissioner, Revenue, Punjab, addressing the meeting asked the deputy commissioners to fully gear up the machinery to solve the problems of the people at the earliest and ensure the proper and timely utilisation of the funds.
Wife, paramour held for mans
JALANDHAR March 22A murder case has been solved by the police with the arrest of the wife of the deceased and her paramour.
Sewa Singh (40), a resident of Dhurkot locality in Shahkot township, had been attacked with a sword by two scooter-borne persons near Chak Khurd village while he was on going from Nakodar to Shahkot on his bicycle on March 18. He had died on the spot.
According to the SSP, Mr Gaurav Yadav, during investigation it was found that Karamjit Kaur, alias Kesar Kaur (30), wife of Sewa Singh, who had allegedly developed illicit relations with her maternal cousin, Charan Singh Sony, about two to three years ago, had disappeared after the murder of her husband. Charan Singh Sony, a resident of Gaarha Mohalla in Nakodar, confessed that he and Karamjit Kaur had decided to do away with Sewa Singh after the latter came to know about their alleged illicit relationship Charan Singh has asked one of his friends, Pamma, to execute the murder as planned by them.
On the morning of March 18, both Charan Singh and Pamma chased Sewa Singh on a scooter.They had attacked and killed him at a secluded place later. Charan Singh was joined by Karamjit Kaur and the two had absconded
Charan Singh and Karamjit Kaur were arrested from Kapurthala pulli at Nakodar. A manhunt has been launched to nab Pamma.
Meanwhile, the district police claims to have busted a 10-member gang of robbers with the arrest of six of them along with arms and ammunition.
Killer hired to finish
BARNALA, March 22 Three brothers of Daraka Patti Mour village of this police district hired a contract killer and committed the murder of their sisters father-in-law Balbir Singh.
Police sources said that Mela Singh, Sadhu Singh and Babu Singh sons of Gurnam Singh allegedly hired Jarnail Singh alias Jail Singh resident of Sehna for committing the murder of Balbir Singh.
The three accused paid Rs 40,000 as advance money to Jarnail Singh for the killing while Rs 40,000 more was to be paid after the job was done.
Sources added that on March 1, when Balbir Singh was returning home at 7 p.m. in his Patti village, he was shot in the back by few persons who were in a jeep. The licensed 12 bore gun was used in the crime.
Balbir Singh, who was injured identified that Mela Singh, Sadhu Singh and Babu Singh were among those who fired at him. A case under Sections 307, 148, 149 and 120-B of the IPC was registered in this regard.
Mr Ishwar Singh, SSP, said that during investigation it was found that sister of these three accused was married to Mr Sarbjit Singh, son of victim, Balbir Singh. All these three accused connived with Satnam Singh, Kaka Singh, Babli and Janta Singh to murder Balbir Singh.
For executing their plan, Mela Singh one of the accused hired Jarnail Singh and promised to pay him Rs 80,000 for the job. The accused paid Rs 40,000 advance to the hired killer.
He added that investigation revealed that sister of Mela Singh, Sadhu Singh and Babu Singh, who was married to Sarbjit Singh four years ago, was not having cordial relations with her husband. About two years ago, a clash among the accused and members of their sisters in-laws family had also taken place in which Babu Singh one of the accused received injuries which result in the loss of eye sight. In this regard a case was registered which was pending in the court.
Mr Ishwar Singh said
that to avenge that the previous incident, the accused
hatched a conspiracy and hired the killer to murder
Balbir Singh. He added that Balbir Singh, who was injured
on March 1, succumbed to his injuries on March 12. On the
death of Balbir Singh, the accused were booked for murder
under Section 302 of the IPC.
Two injured in firing
PATIALA, March 22 Two persons received bullet injuries in a shootout between two rival groups of the city known for anti-social activities here this morning.
Sarfaraz Ashraf Khan of the Mussa Khan group and Manpreet Singh of Dimple group were admitted to Rajindra Hospital after they received bullet injuries in the shootout at Chandni Chowk at about 10.00 a.m. Their condition is stable, according to the doctors attending them.
The police has registered a case under Sections 307, 148, 149 IPC and 25, 54 under the Arms Act against five persons, no arrest has been made so far.
One dies in mishap
PATIALA, March 22
Rashpal Singh, a milk vendor, died of multiple injuries
at Rajindra Hospital here after being hit by a truck near
Bahadurgarh Fort on the Patiala-Chandigarh road today. A
case under Sections 279, 427-A and 304-A of the IPC has
Education bandh on
JALANDHAR, March 22 To protest against the callous attitude of the Punjab Government against the affiliated private colleges, the Joint Action Committee (JAC) of the four employees organisation have decided to hold an education bandh in Punjab and Chandigarh on March 29.
The JAC, in a press note
issued here yesterday alleged that the salary payments of
the staff of these colleges had not been made since the
past six months due to the non release of salary grants
by the government since September last.
Vacation schedule of GND
AMRITSAR, March 22 The Guru Nanak Dev University has announced its vacation schedule for the session 2000-2001 for its affiliated colleges, university teaching departments, its regional campus at Jalandhar and Gurdaspur.
According to the varsity Registrar, the summer vacation will be observed in the arts, science and social sciences colleges from May 8 to July 8; autumn break from October 2 to October 7; and winter break from December 25 to January 6, while in the education (B.Ed) colleges there will be summer vacation from June 19 to July 29; autumn break from October 9 to October 14; and winter break from December 25 to January 6.
In the university
teaching departments and regional campuses the summer
vacation will be observed from May 22 to June 30; autumn
break from September 25 to September 29; and winter break
from December 25 to December 29.
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