|Monday, May 1, 2000,
cant topple my govt: Badal
not interested in talks: Mishra
supporters object to probe
20 cr needed for mental hospital:
leaders boycott Amarinders visit
infighting harmful: Barnala
damaging Sikh traditions
room for lawyers soon: Kanwaljit
Force training causes fire
of wheat burnt
destroys wheat crop
kill girls lover
kidnaps 2 persons
sheet against Addl. Director
overshadow boys in the race for gold medals at university
degree-holders a disillusioned lot
III paper out of syllabus?
Sodhi elected PCCTU chief
Dissidents cant topple my
AMRITSAR, April 30 Mr Parkash Singh Badal, the Chief Minister, today claimed that the dissident Akali MLAs were not in a position to topple his government. My government will complete full five-year term. Not only, this, we will win the next Assembly election with a thumping majority, he said while talking to the press here today.
Mr Badal described the claims of dissident Akali MLA from Morinda, Mr Ravi Inder Singh, as bundle of white lies that he (Mr Ravi Inder Singh) would topple his government with the support of the BJP. The alliance of the SAD and the BJP is permanent which will continue even during the next Assembly elections, he said. He said no BJP leader had ever shared views with Mr Ravi Inder Singh.
Mr Ravi Inder Singh is a small fry and hence there is no threat to my government, he said. Mr Badal alleged that Mr Ravi Inder Singh and the leadership of the Sarb Hind Shiromani Akali Dal had been misleading the voters and MLAs that they would topple the government. The Chief Minister claimed that he enjoyed the support of his party men and MLAs.
To a question, Mr Badal said the SAD and the BJP would form the next government as both the parties still enjoy confidence of voters which was clear from the byelections of Nawanshahr. The security of the SHSAD candidate was deposited as he could got less than 500 votes.
Security personnel today broke the lock of local Kanchan Physiotheraphy Centre to reach atop the building. Overlooking Guru Nanak Bhavan where Mr Parkash Singh Badal went to participate in a religious function.
The owner of the Centre, Mr R.P. Gupta and his son, Mr Anupam Gupta, told the press that their neighbour told them about the incident on the telephone. They went to the nearby police station to lodge a complaint against the commandos for trespassing, but in vain.
Presiding over a function held in memory of pradhancharya Shri Sohan Lal Ji Maharaj at Guru Nanak Bhavan here today. Mr Badal said the samadhi of Acharya Sohan Lal built by the Jain Samaj at local Mall Mandi on the GT Road, would be rebuilt and asked the senior officials, including the Deputy Commissioner, Commissioner Municipal Corporation and Chairman of Improvement Trust, to prepare a blue print for the samadhi by taking care of the legal aspects. He assured all financial help on behalf of the state government for this purpose.
The Punjab Minister for
Food and Supplies, Mr Madan Mohan Mittal, the Health and
Family Welfare Minister, Dr Baldev Raj Chawla, Mr Om
Parkash Soni, MLA, and The former mayor, Mr Ajaypal Singh
Mirankot, MLA and Mr Pardeep Singh Walia, district
president SAD (B) Urban were present on the dais.
Pak not interested in talks:
PATIALA, April 30 The Principal Secretary to the Prime Minister, Mr Brajesh Mishra, today said that Pakistan was not interested in holding meaningful talks with India adding the country would only participate in a dialogue with Pakistan if it stopped cross-border terrorism.
Talking to newsmen here after attending the 27th convocation of the Punjabi University here, Mr Brajesh Mishra said even though Pakistan had recently stated that it favoured a meaningful dialogue with India, its Chief Executive Gen Parvez Musharraf had in a recent interview stated that his country did not recognise the Simla and Lahore Agreements. He said this was not a good indicator for holding talks between the two countries. He said a mere offer of talks without taking the ground realities into consideration did not mean anything.
He said there was now need for Pakistan to show sincerity with regard to a peaceful solution to differences between the two countries to make this a reality. Pakistan must stop cross-border terrorism, he added. He said India on its part had not shied from talks.
Mr Mishra said there were no plans at present to counter cross-border terrorism by attacking training camps on the other side. He said the country would take action only on its side of the Line of Control.
The Principal Secretary also made it clear the country would not sign the Comprehensive Test Ban Treaty (CTBT) unless a consensus was achieved in the country in this regard. At present, he said, there was no consensus on signing the CTBT in the country. He said this had also been conveyed to the USA even though it (the USA) felt signing of the CTBT would not endanger Indias security.
He said in the past six to eight weeks the security forces had done a commendable job in countering insurgency in Jammu and Kashmir. The number of terrorists being killed was was going up and the casualties among the security personnel had come down. He said there was a lot of sensationalism about suicide attacks on security compounds but none of these had been successful. We should keep this in mind, he said adding the suicide missions were signs of desperation on the part of the militants.
When asked about
yesterdays fire at the Bharatpur army depot, he
said no evidence of sabotage had so far been found. It
was understood that some negligence on part of the civil
labour was responsible for the fire, he said.
Bibis supporters object
JALANDHAR, April 30 A number of supporters of the SGPC chief, Bibi Jagir Kaur, have objected to any inquiry into the mysterious death of Harpreet Kaur.
here today, Mr Swaran Singh Josh, Political Secretary of
Bibi Jagir Kaur, Mr Mehar Singh, Chairman, Market
Committee, Dhilwan, and Mr Avtaar Singh Nadala said they
were averse to any inquiry by the Punjab police or the
CBI as it would hurt the sentiments of the Sikhs in
general and of the Lobana community in particular.
It is a delicate matter as it involved death of a
daughter. They said there was no need of any such
inquiry as such deaths occur every second day. The
hue and cry is being raised by certain vested interests
as she was the daughter of the SGPC chief and no body
would have bothered if she had been a daughter of an
ordinary person, said Mr Josh. The Akali activists,
who handed out a written press note to mediapersons and
who were not ready to respond to queries about the death
of Harpreet, however, said they expected full justice
from the Punjab and Haryana High Court.
20 cr needed for mental
BATHINDA, April 30 The Punjab Government should make arrangements of a one-time grant of Rs 20 crore to meet the urgent requirement of drugs, equipments, chemicals, dieticians and construction of a kitchen for the mental hospital, Amritsar. In the long run, a budgetary provision of Rs 1 lakh per bed per year should be made for it.
These recommendations were made by a high-powered committee constituted by Punjab Government to suggest ways and means to improve the functioning of Dr Vidya Sagar Government Hospital, Amritsar.
The committee, comprising Dr N.N. Wig, Dr (Mrs) Sudesh Khanna, Dr S.S. Sidhu (all members), Dr G.S. Preet, convener and Dr B.K. Sharma, chairperson, while observing that the hospital is in a bad shape and keeping in mind that its patients are beaten up by the workers, suggested that the Punjab Government could consider selling 22 acres of vacant and surplus land of the hospital to generate income for it.
The committee recommended that two posts of medical superintendent and deputy medical superintendent must be exclusively reserved for psychiatrists only. Out of the 14 sanctioned jobs for medical officers, 10 should be occupied by psychiatrists and the rest should be given to general medical officers.
It said the vacant post of psychiatric social workers, nurses and clinical psychologists needed to be filled immediately. The staff members of the hospital should be made aware of human rights of the patients as stressed by the Supreme Court and the Human Rights Commissions of India and Punjab.
The committee further recommended that cots were unfit for use which needed to be disposed of and replaced by new ones so that a total of 500 cots became available at an early date.
The committee, while observing that this institution largely serves as a custodial home and dumping ground for the mentally ill due to fact that there are no community efforts for the social rehabilitation of reasonably cured mental patients, recommended that involvement of NGOs was essential in the rehabilitation programme. The NGOs could organise the half-way home, help in job placement of patients and in general be a link between the families and the professionals.
Meanwhile, Mr Hardev Arshi, Leader, of the CPI group in the Punjab Vidhan Sabha, in a press note issued here today alleged that the Punjab Government had put the recommendations of the committee into cold storage and was trying to sell off 86 acres of land of the mental hospital along with the building in haste.
He demanded that the
Punjab Government should withdraw its decision of selling
86 acres of land along with the building of mental
hospital immediately and takes necessary steps for
implementing the recommendation of the committee.
Girls overshadow boys in the
race for gold medals at university convocation
PATIALA, April 30 Girls have been routinely outnumbering boys while vying for top honours in Punjabi University here for the last seven to eight years. However now they have overwhelmingly overshadowed boys in the race for gold medals with only a lucky boy managing to get first place in the list of honours for the last two academic sessions.
The 27th convocation held in Punjabi University here today saw gold medals being conferred on students standing first in various courses in the last two academic sessions. This was so because the 1998 - 99 convocation could not be held. The convocation saw only 16 boys getting gold medals in the 1998-99 session and 18 boys coming first in the 1999-2000 session. There was a similar trend in award of Ph.D and M.Phil degrees also with girls getting a majority of the degrees conferred on the occasion.
Boys were able to come out tops in defence studies, zoology, statistic, MBA, LL.B, B Pharmacy, Master of Computer Application, economics, applied physics and M.Sc, sports . In all to rest , mainly art subjects the girls led in the march . This year even the Chancellors medal for excellence was awarded to a girl Bhawna Hora who secured a record percentage in M.Sc (biotechnology).
Talking to a cross-section of the faculty and the students it was revealed that more girls took admission in the university as there were more art subjects . Girls were even ahead in taking admission in science subjects like zoology and chemistry and were only less in basic subjects like maths and physics.
The girls themselves say they are ahead because they work more and are willing to be more responsible in their studies. Hargunjit Kaur, who secured the first position in M.A. English said girls were able to do better in studies as they were devoting more time to studies. Boys, she felt, were more concerned about professional courses and jobs and sometimes even treated the university degree as part-time course done while preparing for other things.
University Professor N.S. Kapoor said hostel facilities and necessity to do advance degrees in arts stream to get jobs was the reason for girls striving harder in this field. He said girls also had less avenues as compared to boys, and a university degree also helped in improving the marriage chances of the candidate . This was a two-pronged strategy as girls were also in some cases finding it difficult to get suitable matches in consonance with their degrees.
However, faculty members said the overpowering presence of girls on the medals list did not mean boys were lagging behind in studies. They said a large number of boys had simply stopped coming to the university. Those who came did excel where innovations were required and were doing well in computers and medicine while girls excelled in subjects in which intensive learning was required.
witnessed some goof-ups due to poor planning of how the
students were to be awarded degrees. There was a hold-up
mid-way due to a mix-up with a batch other than whose
names were being announced waiting to get their degrees
on the stage. While University Chancellor, Lt-Gen J.F.R.
Jacob, awarded degrees to the Ph.D holders and gold
medallists, the Vice-Chancellor conferred degrees to some
batches. The large batches were given degrees below the
stage itself by various teachers which dampened the
spirits of the candidates who had made it a point to
attend the convocation. There were also serious
objections from among the faculty towards one teacher who
conferred degrees to a batch wearing the prescribed robe
despite the fact that he himself is not a Ph.D holder.
Party infighting harmful: Barnala
KHANNA, April 30 (PTI) Former Punjab Chief Minister and senior Akali Dal leader Surjeet Singh Barnala today said the infighting in the party was proving harmful for it as its image had shown a downward trend.
Addressing a public meeting here,he said that the party had taken a beating after several senior leaders left it as was evident from the results of the last parliamentary polls.
No local Akali leader or office bearer of the party was present at the meeting.
He said the internal fighting and desertion by certain senior party leaders would adversely affect the partys position in the coming Assembly polls.
addressing a public rally here, Punjab Chief Minister
Parkash Singh Badal had claimed that Sarv Hind Shiromani
Akali Dal (SHSAD) chief G.S. Tohra and his supporters
were a spent force and the Akali Dal had no
fear from them.
Cong leaders boycott
FARIDKOT, April 30 The factionalism in the Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee (PPCC) came to surface with much vigour again when senior local leaders, including the district president, Mr Surinder Gupta, a local MLA, Mr Avtar Brar, the Congress MP, Mr Jagmeet Singh Brar, and the state general secretary, Mr Opinder Sharma, boycotted the visit of the state President, Mr Amarinder Singh, when he visited Harunau village of this district to attend a function today.
Party sources said these leaders also did not accorded Mr Amarinder Singh a ceremonial welcome during his visit at Panjgrain yesterday.
Mr Surinder Gupta, president, DCC, told TNS that they boycotted the visit of the state President as they were not taken into confidence before his visit. He added that they came to know about his visit from the posters in the town. He added the names of certain local leaders were also missing from the posters.
The sources said these leaders, who were believed to be closer to the former Chief Minister, Mrs Rajinder Kaur Bhattal, were also agitated over the fact that Mr Amarinder Singhs visit was planned to counter the influence of Mrs Bhattal in the area. The function was organised by the senior vice-president, DCC, Mr L.S. Mahasha.
A senior Congress leader on condition of anonymity alleged that Congress workers were feeling suffocated as the state party leadership had been promoting some Akalis into the party.
Condition of gurdwaras
better under PGPC
FEROZEPORE, April 30 A former Punjab minister, Mr Inderjit Singh Zira, who has just returned from Pakistan, said no Sikh militant training camps were seen operating in any of the gurdwaras in that country.
Claiming that a delegation that visited Pakistan did not come across with any of the Sikh militant organisation either, he said, the purpose of their visit was confined to deliberations with the Pakistan Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (PGPC) aimed at improving the condition of Sikh shrines in Pakistan.
Mr Zira told TNS that the issue of the PGPC being headed by a former ISI chief did not surface during the visit. Contrary to the allegations made by the Indian agencies that the Sikh gurdwaras are being increasingly used by the ISI as training centres for Sikh militants, Mr Zira said that there were no signs to suggest this. He said the conditions of the Sikh shrines improved under the control of the PGPC. He added that the former ISI chief, Mr Javed Nisar, is wholeheartedly looking after the improvement of the Sikh shrines. Apparently, he is not working for any political objective now, he said.
Mr Zira denied that the PGPC had purposely invited the leaders, owing allegiance to the breakaway Akali Dal faction led by Mr Gurcharan Singh Tohra. Significantly, Mr Zira was accompanied by a former Lok Sabha member, Mr Prem Singh Chandumajra, and the Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee President, Mr Paramjit Singh Sarna, all of whom are considered close to Mr Tohra.
Mr Zira also criticised
the Punjab Chief Minister, Mr Parkash Singh Badal, for
seeking suspension of rail service between India and
Pakistan, saying this is not in the interest of the Sikh
community. He however, said Guru Granth Sahib was missing
in nearly 135 gurdwaras, but added that the PGPC had
assured to make necessary arrangements.
LUDHIANA, April 30 The RSS was trying to weed out the minorities like Sikhs by damaging the Sikh traditions in a very calculated manner.
These views were expressed in a resolution passed by the World Sikh Council at its meeting held at Gurdwara Damdama Sahib, Mansooran, about 15 km away from here yesterday.
The meeting was held
under the chairmanship of Justice Kuldip Singh (retd) and
was attended by the president of Sant Samaj, Baba Sarbjot
Singh Bedi, former head priest of Akal Takht, Bhai Ranjit
Singh, general secretary of Sarv Hind Akali Dal, Mr
Jasbir Singh Ghumman, Mr Heera Singh Gabhrhia, MLA, Mr
Baldev Singh Sindhia, former president of Shiromani
Gurdwara Prabandhak Committee.
Common room for lawyers soon:
KHARAR, April 30 Capt Kanwaljit Singh, Finance Minister of Punjab, has asked the lawyer community to make an issue of public debate of how to control the present situation of increasing poverty, corruption, inequality, casteism and violation of fundamental rights in the country.
He was addressing the members of the Bar Association in Judicial Complex here today. He said lawyers were opinion leaders of the community and they could play a vital role in solving these issues. He added that even now 50 per cent of our population was living below the poverty line. He stressed the need to rededicate ourselves to the need of the common man.
Accepting the demand
raised by lawyers, he ordered that the common room for
the lawyers would be constructed at the earliest. He
asked the SDM Kharar to get all formalities completed
within two to three months for the release of funds. He
announced a grant of Rs 2 lakh for the purchase of
furniture for the common room. Mr Anil Kaushal,
President, Bar Association, Mr Amrik Singh, Mr Tara Chand
Gupta, Mr Mohan Lal, Mr Natrajan Kaushal, Mr Avtar Singh
Dhanoa and Mr Harbant Singh, all advocates, also spoke on
Air Force training causes
LUDHIANA, April 30 The ammunition training at the firing training centre at air force station, Halwara, has cost dear to farmers whose fields are located in the 5 km area around the centre, when a bomb fell out of its range and hundreds of acres of wheat fields caught fire on April 28.
According to the information available, a training programme for aerial firing was on at the centre when a bomb shell fell out of its range into the fields and within no time a large area of fields located between villages of Sodhewal and Raya Kala caught fire.
Bags of wheat burnt
BATHINDA, April 30 As many as 400 bags of wheat were destroyed when a fire broke out at a open plinth hired by the Food Corporation of India (FCI) on the Maur Mandi-Talwandi Sabo road today.
The fire brigade sources said that cause of the fire could not be ascertained so far. The fire was noticed in the morning and was controlled after a few hours. Fire engines from this city were sent to the spot.
Fire destroys wheat crop
PHAGWARA, April 30 Wheat crop on one acre of land was destroyed in a fire at Jagatpur Jattan and Ucha Pind villages today.
Reports of fire were also received from Pharala and Nangal Majha villages. Wheat chaff was also reduced to ashes at Ucha Pind where fire damaged fruit trees.
MALOUT (Muktsar), April 30 In a bizarre incident, Baljinder Singh, a local resident, and his wife allegedly killed the lover of their daughter with the help of two other family friends.
Police sources said Dony (name changed), the daughter of accused couple, was having an affair with one Charanjit Singh. Both were classmates in the local college. Charanjit Singh was allegedly killed by the accused with iron rods when he was going to meet Dony.
After killing Charanjit Singh, the accused threw his body into the Sirhind feeder canal. The accused also fled from this town after committing the crime.
Mr Kultar Singh, SSP, said on April 28, the girl came to the house of Charanjit Singh and requested his father, Mr Jagroop Singh to arrange their marriage immediately. However, when the girl found that her repeated pleas were failing to get any positive response from the father of her lover, she returned to her house.
After the sunset on the same day, Baljinder Singh, his wife and two other family friends waited for Charanjit Singh at a secluded place, anticipating that he would come to meet their daughter.
When Charanjit Singh reached the spot, the accused beat him up with iron rods, injuring him on his head. He died on the spot.
Mr Kultar Singh said that on the complaint of the father of deceased, a case of kidnapping was registered on April 28. The police also launched a massive operation to trace the body, which was recovered today. A case under Sections 302 and 34 of the IPC had been registered against the accused.
Police kidnaps 2
FEROZEPORE, April 30 Mr Gurdial Singh, a resident of Pilibhit in Uttar Pradesh, has charged the district police with kidnapping two of his relatives Swarn Singh and Sukhdev Singh from the Udham Singh Nagar area on April 26 and holding them in detention.
The police denies the charge and claims that the duo are members of a gang of cheats. The charge was denied by Mr Gurdial Singh.
Mr Gurdial Singh added that a police party in mufti had detained them on an assurance to set them free after questioning in connection with a case of cheating at a local police station in Nanakmata. However, they were taken to Punjab without taking into confidence the UP police.
A complaint to this effect has also been registered at the local police station. He suspects that they might have been detained on suspicion for their association with Paramjit Singh (now absconding), who had earlier committed a fraud in Ferozepore.
However, the police claims to have arrested Sukhdev Singh and two others for cheating in Makhu yesterday. While senior police officers claim that Swaran Singh was not with them, they said that he was also an accused and perhaps some underground. Denying the charge of kidnapping.
Mr N.P.S. Sidhu, SP (Headquarders), said that three persons Darshan Singh, Karnail Singh and Sukhdev were arrested yesterday under Section 420 of the IPC, while three others, including Swaran Singh are still at large.
Mr Sidhu said that they had lured some residents of Makhu by offering them to double their investment and had taken Rs 2 lakh from them.
Charge sheet against Addl.
CHANDIGARH, April 30 The Punjab Minister of Information and Public Relations, Mr Natha Singh Dalim, has ordered that a charge sheet be served on the Additional Director, Mr Jagdeep Singh Chauhan, for award of major punishment under the Punishment and Appeal Rules 1970, it is reliably learnt.
This, source said, had been done in view of his alleged grave misconduct and serious breach of employees conduct rules. He is also alleged to have written derogatory letters against the superior officers.
Ph.D degree-holders a
PATIALA, April 30 With doctor of philosophy degree, the highest in the academic field, firmly stacked in their kitty. It is an uncertain and almost blank future that is staring at the faces of the majority of youngsters who received the degree in Punjabi University here today.
After putting in years of hard work for attaining the top-most qualification, even the most optimist of these 92 Ph.D awardees realise that the struggle has not ended.
It has only started, says Mrs Aradhana, holding a Ph.D degree in psychology in her hands. Koyi fayda nahin lag reha (I dont see any advantage), she laments.
She is upset as there is no assured job after attaining the cherished degree. I dont see any material advantage other than the so-called honour of prefixing the Dr title before your name, she laments, remarking that it may sound honourable but it will not earn bread and butter for her.
Mr Gurmeet Khokhar, who was awarded Ph.D in sociology, was equally bitter. The degree does not open any new avenue for us he says. Lamenting any certain future, Mr Khokhar was particularly upset at the state governments attitude towards such degree holders. The state government has not implemented a recommendation made by the UGC that a Ph.D holder should be exempted from possessing a net clearance certificate to avail a job in government and private colleges he said.
Demanding immediate notification in this regard he said he possessed highest qualification in a recent interview in a semi-government college but was not chosen as he had not cleared the UGC test.
Mr Pritpal Singh, Ph.D in human biology is also in a quandary. The joy of holding the most revered qualification was only temporary. For the question of converting the degree into some good assured income was writ large on his face. Where is the job for us he asks. I can only go in for further research and that too at a nominal fellowship he said helplessly.
While most of the degree holders had started as youngsters bubbling with energy. They were now on the verge of entering into the middle-age category. A few still young ones in marriageable age had other problems. My parents are old and they are in hurry for solemnising my marriage, but now can I take the plunge without a secure job, asked one such youth wishing anonymity.
Another girl wishing not
to be quoted said all her friends who had opted for a
job-oriented course or JBT and B.Ed degrees were
well-placed now and she had put her matrimonial prospects
in jeopardy running after this degree.
B.A. III paper out of
FEROZEPORE, April 30 In a representation to the Registrar, Examination Panjab University, Chandigarh, four college lecturers and a principal have stated that some question of 38 marks of BA-III Economics (B) paper held on April 28 were out of syllabus.In the representation, the copy of which was released to the press here today, they said question No. 1 B, and question No. III b were out of syllabus. Similarly question No. 1 H and V (a) belonging to mathematics portion, were again out of syllabus.
KBS Sodhi elected PCCTU
LUDHIANA, April 30 Prof KBS Sodhi of the local Khalsa College and Prof Charanjit Chawla of SGGS College, Chandigarh, have been unanimously elected president and general secretary, respectively, of the Punjab and Chandigarh College Teachers Union (PCCTU) for 2000-2001.
This was disclosed here yesterday by Prof S.S. Hundal, the outgoing president of the PCCTU. The new team will assume office on May 15.
The other office-bearers
are: Vice-President Prof J.S. Randhawa
Treasurer; Prof N.P. Manocha Secretary, PU area
Prof Sukhpal Singh; Secretary, Punjabi University area
Prof Aminder Singh, and Secretary, GNDU area
Prof Parkash Singh.
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