Thursday, May 18, 2000,
Chandigarh, India





punjab
P U N J A B

Overhaul recruitment system
CHANDIGARH: Call it babudom or officialdom, the burgeoning number of government workers, countrywide, is now a cause of major concern for the policy and decision-makers.

Congress ‘not interested’ in toppling game
KAPURTHALA, May 17 — Capt Amarinder Singh, president of the Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee, has stated that the SAD-BJP government in the state will not complete the remaining one-and-a-half years of its term and will collapse within the next few months.

Draft to be prepared for devolution of powers
CHANDIGARH, May 17—The Punjab Cabinet has directed the Panchayati Raj and the Local Bodies Department to prepare a draft for the devolution of powers to panchayats and municipal bodies.

2 to die for murder
FATEHGARH SAHIB, May 17 — Mr A.N. Jindal, Additional District and Sessions Judge, has imposed death sentence on two accused and life imprisonment on the third woman accused on one of the most sensational murder cases of Sirhind town in which four persons were killed.

COMMUNITY

Panel on ’84 riots hailed
CHANDIGARH , May 17 — The Punjab Sikh Danga Peerat Society has welcomed the setting up of a Commission by the NDA government to probe anti-Sikh riots of 1984.


Some of the tullu pumps seized by the Patiala Municipal Corporation. photo by Subhash Patialvi
Raids reveal nearly every fourth house is using tullu pump in Patiala

Building centres to be set up in dists
CHANDIGARH, May 17 — Punjab will have a rural building centre in every district. The centre would be set up in collaboration with HUDCO. At a later date such centres will come up even at block level.



YOUR TOWN
Bathinda
Chandigarh
Fatehgarh Sahib
Jalandhar
Kapurthala
Ludhiana
Patiala


EARLIER STORIES
  SHOs asked not to use red lights on vehicles
LUDHIANA, May 17 — The traffic police has asked all police officers below the rank of DSP to remove hooters, red lights and black films from their vehicles — personal or official.

Order on murder case set aside
CHANDIGARH, May 17 — Setting aside the orders passed by the trial court in a triple murder case, a Division Bench of the Punjab and Haryana High Court here has acquitted a Muktsar resident of charges framed against him.

Fortune teller fails to read own future
BATHINDA, May 17 — When Pandit Ram Kumar Sharma, a Bhrigu shastri of Hoshiarpur, promised Mr Inder Jit Sahni, a local resident, to predict the fate of his wife, Kanchan, little did he know about his own future.

PCMSA delegation calls on Chawla
PATIALA, May 17 — A delegation of PCMS Association, led by its General Secretary, Dr D.C. Sharma, and Dr B.S. Sohal and Dr Anoop Modi, met the Punjab Health Minister, Dr Baldev Raj Chawla, here last evening and conveyed to him the anguish and discontent amongst the PCMS doctors over the delay in implementation of the recommendations of the Punjab Pay Commission and redressal of other grievances of PCMS doctors.

No to statue irks Bishnois
DUTARANWALI (Abohar), May 17 — The decision of the authorities not to allow the installation of a statue of the Late Sant Kumar, founder of the All-India Jeev Raksha Bishnoi Sabha, here has irked the Bishnoi community.

CRIME

Man stabbed in fight over pigeons
JALANDHAR, May 17 — Chance swapping of ‘homes’ by pigeons led to a big fight among their masters in the Kabir Nagar locality here yesterday, resulting in serious injuries to one of them.

EDUCATION

Stir by teachers suspended
LUDHIANA, May 17 — The Joint Action Committee of four teachers’ organisations representing more than 50,000 primary teachers has decided to suspend its agitation in response to the positive attitude adopted by the state government towards their demands.

BUSINESS

Meeting on RBI guidelines today
LUDHIANA, May 17 — The Punjab Government has convened tomorrow at Chandigarh a meeting of representatives of 14 nationalised banks and leaders of the Northern India Federation of Industrial and Commercial Undertakings to discuss implementation of the RBI guidelines with regard to compromise settlements for sick small industrial units.
Top




 

Downsizing govt-I
A Tribune survey
Overhaul recruitment system
By PPS Gill
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH: Call it babudom or officialdom, the burgeoning number of government workers, countrywide, is now a cause of major concern for the policy and decision-makers.

With a major chunk of government income going through salaries and pensions both at the Centre and in the states, not much money is left for development. This also adds to the non-Plan expenditure. No amount of revenue resource mobilisation seems to help.

Despite the ever-increasing size of babus and bureaucracy, across the board, the level of services is decreasing. Any government, elected or under President’s rule, is unable to check this growth of this workforce, which is more of a liability than an asset.

The crushing weight of all this does not show any corresponding efficiency in performance by any government anywhere. In fact the government is often perceived to exist more for its employees than for the common man, who only pays for the maintenance of the government and its institutions.

Only the other day (April 27), the Minister of External Affairs, Mr Jaswant Singh, while speaking on the Prime Minister’s behalf in Parliament in reply to the motion of vote of thanks to the President’s Address, called for “downsizing” of the government, both at the Centre and states.

Referring to fiscal profligacy, he said while the Centre spent over Rs 40,000 crore on its four million plus employees, in the states more than 70 per cent of the income went for salaries and pensions. No wonder, the combined deficit of the states was Rs 75,000 crore. Despite this, several states, Punjab is no exception, had elephantine cabinets.

There are ways and means to compress unproductive expenditure and spare more money for development — imposing a blanket ban on fresh recruitment, retrenchment, voluntary retirement, golden handshake, redeployment (after training and imparting required skills), leaving posts vacant once an incumbent retires, quits or dies or even abolishing posts are some of the suggestions in the offing to “downsize” governments. The idea being to make optimum use of manpower and shed excess flab, improve efficiency and reduce the time for files moving in the government labyrinth.

It is against this backdrop one has to view how the Punjab Government proposed to get rid of excess baggage of babus, bureaucrats and workers deployed at various projects and sites, crowding loss-making boards, corporations and other institutions.

For quite some time, the word “downsizing” is being heard in the corridors of power. One has not heard or seen its actual implementation or of any effective steps to trim the government. In fact, like privatisation, downsizing, is used more out of fashion.

This process has many implications: social, economic, political and administrative. The Principal Secretary, (Finance), Mr K.R. Lakhanpal, says “downsize” is a misnomer. The correct word is “right -size”. He is a strong votary of a total ban on recruitment in the government and its agencies for the next five years or so. “A government should not be treated as an employment agency”. Its function should be that of a catalyst and to frame policies which generate more job opportunities, provide the right type of education, training and infrastructural facilities so that those who leave the portals of these institutions become eminently employable”.

There has to be, a complete overhaul of the “recruitment system” if “total ban” is not possible to make it “scandal-free”. When it comes to

government jobs or even transfers, allegations of corrupt practices are to be shared equally by politicians and bureaucrats.

If Punjab is to improve its fiscal situation, generate revenue, invest on development and prune profligacy let it make a beginning and take a lead in “right-sizing” The government workforce. (To be concluded)Top

 

Cong ‘not interested’ in toppling game
From Our Correspondent and PTI

KAPURTHALA, May 17 — Capt Amarinder Singh, president of the Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee, has stated that the SAD-BJP government in the state will not complete the remaining one-and-a-half years of its term and will collapse within the next few months.

Addressing a press conference at the local rest house along with Mr Jagjit Singh, leader of the Congress Legislature Party, he said the Congress was not interested in toppling the Akali government because it was likely to fall on its own soon. He said even the Akali legislators owing allegiance to the Shiromani Akali Dal were doubtful of winning the next election on SAD ticket and thus were looking for some other platform.

When asked about extending support to Mr Ravi Inder Singh in order to topple or form the government, Capt Amarinder Singh said the Congress would not support Mr Ravi Inder Singh in any case and added that the Congress would prefer to go to the people and seek mandate to form a new government.

He, however, refused to answer questions regarding the RSS-Akali feud, Namdhari issue and change of jathedars of Akal Takht.

He said Namdharis were a respectable community which had made tremendous sacrifices during the nation’s freedom struggle. He said responsible persons should not raise such issues which could disturb harmony in the state.

On Union Home Minister L.K. Advani’s announcement on releasing the Punjab terrorists, he said it was “unfortunate that the youths are still languishing in jails”.

He said the Punjab Government was under a heavy debt of Rs 32,000 crore which would rise to Rs 35,000 crore within the next six months. He said annual expenditure of Punjab on salaries and pensions was Rs 5,600 crore whereas its revenue receipts were only Rs 5,300 crore.

Commenting on the stand of the PPCC on the issue of the inclusion of Udham Singh Nagar in Uttaranchal, he said the sentiments of the people of the district should be respected.

Lashing out at the probe being conducted by special investigation team (SIT) into the mysterious death of SGPC chief’s daughter Harpreet Kaur, Mr Amarinder Singh said it was an “eyewash” and asked if IG K.K. Attri, heading the SIT, could question Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal and Bibi Jagir Kaur for allegedly destroying the evidence in the case.

He demanded a probe by the CBI to bring the culprits to book, a large number of workers of Bholath Assembly constituency of Bibi Jagir Kaur reached the Circuit House carrying the banners demanding CBI probe and arrest of “culprits”.

Addressing the party workers at the dharna in the district courts he and other Congress leaders demanded a CBI probe into the death of Harpreet Kaur and resignation of Punjab Transport Minister Raghbir Singh for his failure in maintaining Punjab Roadways’ fleet of buses.

Prominent among those who sat on dharna and addressed the rally were CLP leader Jagjit Singh, Mr Gulzar Singh, Mr Charan Singh, Mr Swaran Singh Cheema, Mr Gurmail Singh Cheema, Mr Devinder Babbu and Mr Sukhpal Singh Khaira.Top

 

Draft to be prepared for devolution of powers
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, May 17—The Punjab Cabinet has directed the Panchayati Raj and the Local Bodies Department to prepare a draft for the devolution of powers to panchayats and municipal bodies.

Vast powers were given to these grassroots institutions with 73rd and 74th Constitutional amendments. In the light of those amendments, almost all state Governments amended their respective panchayati raj and municipal Acts. In reality only a few states gave powers to these institutions.

Punjab figures among those states which have dilly dallied on this issue since 1994, when it framed the new Punjab Panchayati Raj Act, on devolution of powers to panchayats and zila parishads. Even the SAD-led Government , which has launched several struggles in the past decades seeking almost full autonomy for states, has dithered as far as giving powers to panchayats and zila parishads is concerned. Some meagre financial powers were given to panchayats and matter ended there.

However, the Punjab Panchayati Raj Minister, Mr Nirmal Singh Kahlon told TNS today that the Punjab Government was serious for the devolution of powers. Process had been initiated and was expected to be completed by August this year. ‘‘Already a committee of senior officers headed by Mr J.S. Kesar, Secretary, Panchayati Raj Department, has started preparing the draft in consultation with the other departments concerned’’, said Mr Kahlon.

‘‘Along with Director Panchayati Raj, Mr Bidhi Chand, I am going to Kerala on May 24 to participate in a national seminar on the devolution of powers to panchayats’’, Mr Kahlon said .

Several important segments of services sector are among the institutions to be entrusted to panchayats and zila parishads under the Punjab Panchayati Raj Act.

Moreover, District Development and planning committees will be headed by the elected chairpersons of the zila parishads. In fact, Chairpersons of the zila parishads would become more powerful than ministers and Deputy Commissioners if all powers provided in the Act were devolved to the zila parishads, said a senior functionary of the Punjab Government.

A senior bureaucrat says that when there is a mind set among bureaucrats and ministers to be themselves ‘‘power centres’’ by centralising all sort of powers , no department would like to hand over their powers to institutions like panchayats and zila parishads. Recently when the Punjab Chief Minister, Mr Parkash Singh Badal, had directed the panchayats to supervise the functioning and attendance of doctors in rural hospitals, there was a lot of hue and cry and opposition by doctors. Associations of doctors had attacked the Government as well as panchayats. The Government withdrew its orders under pressure.Top

 

2 to die for murder
From Our Correspondent

FATEHGARH SAHIB, May 17 — Mr A.N. Jindal, Additional District and Sessions Judge, has imposed death sentence on two accused and life imprisonment on the third woman accused on one of the most sensational murder cases of Sirhind town in which four persons were killed.

Delivering the judgement in open court late this evening, Mr Jindal said that one Bhinder Kaur, wife of Sewa Singh, a ragi and municipal councillor of Sirhind, had illicit relations with one Kanwaljit Singh, alias Baba, and Manjit Singh, which was noticed by her husband Sewa Singh and son Rachpal Singh. They used to beat her for this. Therefore, it was planned to kill Sewa Singh and Rachpal Singh. On the night of June 26, 1994, the accused armed with lethal weapons entered the house of Sewa Singh, which is in side the gurudwara. Bhinder Kaur, who knew about the plan, remained inside the house. Two sewadars of the gurudwara, Kuldeep Singh and Inder Singh, along with Rachpal Singh, son of Sewa Singh, were asleep. The accused first attacked Sewa Singh, then Rachpal Singh and the two other sewadars and killed all the four on the spot.

In his judgement Mr Jindal said that the crime clearly shows that it was a pre-meditated one and not on account of sudden provocation. The accused Kanwaljit Singh and Manjit Singh indulged in committing a gruesome and cold-blooded crime which justify the imposition of death sentence on two accused and life imprisonment on Bhinder Kaur, the third accused.Top

 

Panel on ’84 riots hailed
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH , May 17 — The Punjab Sikh Danga Peerat Society has welcomed the setting up of a Commission by the NDA government to probe anti-Sikh riots of 1984.

At the same time it has drawn the attention of the government to the neglect of those riot-affected families which got uprooted and continue to struggle for economic rehabilitation.

Even after 16 years, says a Society spokesperson, the migrants’ struggle has not ended. Giving an example, he pointed out that the Reserve Bank of India on the directive of the Supreme Court had framed a scheme to provide financial succour to such riot victims. Called the Central Interest Subsidy Scheme for riot affected borrowers it aimed at their rehabilitation.

Taking cognisance of the hardships faced by such families, the Punjab Chief Minister , Mr Parkash Singh Badal took up the matter with the Prime Minister in February last, requesting that their grievances should be redressed.

Even the Union Minister of Urban Employment and Poverty Alleviation Mr Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa, wrote to the Union Finance Minister, Mr Yashwant Sinha, seeking his intervention in the matter. He was told that the “wrong implementation” of the scheme had resulted in a large number of court cases.

Since the victims had already suffered much and deserved compassion from the Government, Mr Dhindsa, therefore, requested that the scheme be extended till March 31, 2000 from March 31, 1992 and one-time settlement be offered to willing borrowers. “Such a step will assuage the feelings of the riot victims”, he added while forwarding the memorandum of the society.

Those migrants who have settled in Punjab after 1984 continue to nurse their wounds, both physical and psychological.Their tale of woes began when they took loans from the banks and financial institutions. Most of them wanted to set up small-scale industries. This was primarily between 1984 and 1992. Soon those who had ventured into industry and commercial activities were caught up in the whirlpool of losses. What to speak of interest repayment even payment of principal amount became difficult. Moreover there were inbuilt system intricacies for obtaining loan. It was then the Supreme Court had intervened on a petition filed before it and directed the RBI to start a special scheme for the riot-affected.

The scheme envisaged reduction of rate of interest to just 1 per cent (simple interest), waiver on penal interest and principal amount, liberal rehabilitation and rescheduling of the payment of interest etc. In respect of all identifiable and deserving cases the scheme was to be implemented by banks etc. In lieu of that the Government was to reimburse the amount to the banks.

In the process, the society alleges the banks got benefited while borrowers were left high and dry. None of the provisions of the scheme were implemented the way the Supreme Court had desired.

The society has made certain suggestions and even offered cooperation. The detailed memorandum to the Prime Minister and the Finance Minister contains even solution in the form of a proforma which the society has suggested be sent to banks to collect information and proceed accordingly to give succour to the victims who had secured loans.

The society now wants that the new Commission also take into cognisance the case of “rootless and starved of money” migrants who are caught in the vortex of financial institutions and courts, says the Society President, Mr Surinder Pal Singh.Top

 

Raids reveal nearly every fourth house is using tullu pump in Patiala
From Jangveer Singh
Tribune News Service

PATIALA, May 17 — An ongoing drive against tullu pumps by the Patiala Municipal Corporation is revealing astonishing details. Nearly every fourth house is using a tullu pump to draw out water from the main water pipe. Fourteen tullu pumps have been seized within two days of the start of the drive which concentrated on two separate streets of the city only.

Municipal Corporation employees supported by police personnel seized eight tullu pumps from Nungar street near the B-tank yesterday. Today’s raids yielded seven motors from a street in Chappar Banda area of the city. The raids witnessed resistance from the houseowners at some places with yesterday’s raid also witnessing residents of two houses fleeing from their premises after locking them before the municipal staff could get to them.

The corporation authorities are determined to continue with their drive and will regularly raid any one locality of the city everyday. Those whose motors have been seized following the two raids have been issued notices under section 185 of the Corporation Act.

Corporation Commissioner K. S. Kang when questioned said the corporation was still to finalise the amount of penalty to be levied on persons caught in the act of using tullu pumps. He said few of the people had already apologised for using motors and had requested that their motors be returned to them but the Corporation was yet to take a decision in the matter.

Mr Kang said the drive against usage of tullu pumps to draw water from the main water line had been started after an intense educational campaign and repeated warnings . He said the raids, however, revealed that this apparently had not had the required effect. He said he was himself surprised at the number of motors seized despite the fact that the raiding teams had confined themselves to one or two streets only.

He said it was surprising to find that motors were being used to draw water from Nungar street which was adjoining the B tank and was being served by it. He said another surprising fact which was revealed during the raids was that all the motors were mounted on stands. He said due to this it was easy for those using them to remove them quickly in case of a raid.

However, people of Nungar street where yesterday’s raid took place said they had used motors to draw water as there was low pressure in the area and water did not reach the first storey itself. Justifying use of motors another resident Lovelesh Singla said tullu pumps were being used in the city as the corporation had failed in its responsibility to provide proper service, specially maintenance of adequate pressure . He said water did not reach the first and second floors in many areas of the city forcing people to use tullu pumps. He said the pumps were also used to fill overhead tanks where water did not reach itself.

The corporation Commissioner claimed that Patiala was getting water much above the national average. As regarding water not reaching the first floor at many places, he said a water tank could be constructed at the ground floor and a motor used thereafter to take the water to the water tank on the upper floor. He said an estimate had revealed that around 10,000 tullu pumps were being used in the city which had 39,000 water connections, adding if they could be done away with water would even reach the upper floors. He said tullu pumps were playing havoc with the city water distribution system and were the main cause of constant low pressure in many areas. He said only eradication of the use of tullu pumps would ensure regular pressure at all places, and said the corporation would intensify its drive against them in the coming days.Top

 

Building centres to be set up in dists
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, May 17 — Punjab will have a rural building centre in every district. The centre would be set up in collaboration with HUDCO. At a later date such centres will come up even at block level.

This decision was taken at a meeting chaired by the Chief Minister, Mr Parkash Singh Badal, and attended by the regional chief of HUDCO, Mr P.S. Khurana.

This scheme is part of the national programme launched to propagate “low cost” technology in construction sector for the benefit of the common man.

In the first phase, this rural employment oriented scheme would be introduced in 13 districts. The Chief Minister said that he will soon take up the issue of opening a full-fledged training institute by HUDCO in Punjab to produce trainers for building centres. Initially, HUDCO will arrange training in Delhi for resource persons from Punjab for managing these Rural Building Centres.

The nodal agencies will be PUDA and PWD (Building wing). These will depute Sub Divisional Officer in charge of the Building Centres to organise and manage various activities.

Mr Khurana said each centre would cost about Rs 22.50 lakh, including cost of building, machinery, training-aids and other infrastructure. Such a scheme has been implemented in Kerala, Tamilnadu, Maharashtra, Orissa and Rajasthan.Top

 

SHOs asked not to use red lights on vehicles
Tribune News Service

LUDHIANA, May 17 — The traffic police has asked all police officers below the rank of DSP to remove hooters, red lights and black films from their vehicles — personal or official.

According to sources the district traffic police office had sent letters to all Station House Officers (SHO’s) of the rank of Inspector and Sub-Inspector, on May 15 to comply with the notification of the Department of Transport, Government of Punjab (dated September 13, 1999) which prohibits the use of red lights and coloured films, failing which they would be challaned.

There had been instances of several Inspectors, Sub-Inspectors and Assistant Sub-Inspectors using these even on their personal vehicles in violation of the directions of the Punjab and Haryana High Court.

Other than these police officers, several local politicians, municipal councillors and some other influential persons in the city have also been using red lights and coloured films.

Sources in the district traffic police said 60 challans had been issued in the current month in this regard, including to the CMO, Ludhiana, for unauthorised use of red lights.

The SP (Traffic) confirmed that all police officers had been asked to remove red lights from their vehicles.

He informed that only those persons who had taken the permission from the ADGP (Security) could use red lights and coloured films.Top

 

Order on murder case set aside
Tribune News Service

CHANDIGARH, May 17 — Setting aside the orders passed by the trial court in a triple murder case, a Division Bench of the Punjab and Haryana High Court here has acquitted a Muktsar resident of charges framed against him.

Kulwant Singh was earlier booked by the Punjab police after the owner of a marriage palace, Mr Parminder Singh, had alleged that the accused, he suspected, had murdered three brothers working as servants due to some grudge.

The complainant had added that he had seen the bodies of Ashok Tiwari and Sham Sunder burning in a marriage palace room on August 27, 1996, while the accused was lying on scattered pieces of glass in front of the adjoining room.

Pronouncing the orders in the open court, the Bench, comprising Mr Justice Jawahar Lal Gupta and Mr Mehtab Singh Gill, observed: “The prosecution has miserably failed in explaining as to how the injuries were inflicted on the person of the accused....”.

The Bench added that the shattered glass picked up from the lobby “showed that some sort of scuffle or fight had taken place between some persons in which soda water bottles were used as weapon of offence. There is no explanation coming forward from the prosecution as to how these glass pieces were there and how the injuries were inflicted on the person of the accused”.

The Bench concluded: “The appeal of the accused is accepted. The judgement dated March 11, 1998, of the trial court is set aside and the accused is accordingly acquitted of the charges framed against him”.

Notice issued

Issuing notice of motion to Punjab Financial Commissioner, Mr K.S. Janjua, the Punjab and Haryana High Court on Wednesday asked him to show cause as to why proceedings for contempt should not be started for the alleged violation of an order regarding retirement benefits.

Pronouncing the orders on the petition filed by Mr Iqbal Singh and four other retired officials in the Co-operation department, Mr Justice V.S. Aggarwal of the High Court, however, granted exemption from personal appearance to the respondent.

In their petition, Iqbal Singh and others had earlier alleged that retirement benefits had been denied even though, in view of the High Court order, they were entitled for the same, besides being entitled for the refixation of the salary on the post of Assistant Registrars.

Giving details, their counsel had added that the High Court had directed the respondents to refix their seniority “viz-a-viz the non-official respondents keeping in view the fact that they had been appointed as regular inspectors prior to the non-official respondents”.Top

 

Fortune teller fails to read own future
From Chander Parkash
Tribune News Service

BATHINDA, May 17 — When Pandit Ram Kumar Sharma, a Bhrigu shastri of Hoshiarpur, promised Mr Inder Jit Sahni, a local resident, to predict the fate of his wife, Kanchan, little did he know about his own future.

Pandit Sharma was directed to pay Rs 3000 to Mr Sahni by the District Consumer Forum, Hoshiarpur, by way of damages when he did not fulfil his promise of reading out the patra (past and future) of Kanchan.

Pandit Sharma appealed against the judgement of the forum, but his appeal was dismissed with costs of Rs 500 by the Consumer Dispute Redressal Commission, Punjab.

Mr Sabhi received Rs 3,500 from Pandit Sharma by executing the decree of the commission about a week ago.

Mr Sahni told TNS that it all started in 1997 when he approached Pandit Sharma with a request to trace out the ‘patra’ of his wife. Pandit Sharma told him that the ‘patra’ of his wife had been traced and could be read out to him after he paid Rs 500 as fee.

Mr Sahni said Pandit Sharma did not read out the ‘patra’ despite a number of visits to Hoshiarpur along with members of his family. Pandit Sharma he alleged, refused to give him an appointment.

He said he approached the consumer forum here to seek redressal, but his complaint was dismissed on the ground that a Pandit did not come under the purview of the Consumer Protection Act (CPA). An appeal against the forum’s order to the State Consumer Commission went into his favour and he was directed to approach the District Consumer Forum, Hoshiarpur.

The forum, relying on the evidences produced by both parties, held that Pandit Sharma was guilty of providing “deficient services”.

When Pandit Sharma approached the state commission against the orders of the consumer forum, Hoshiarpur, he was directed that the compensation awarded by the consumer forum was not at all excessive to call for its interference. The commission dismissed the appeal with costs of Rs 500.Top

 

PCMSA delegation calls on Chawla
Tribune News Service

PATIALA, May 17 — A delegation of PCMS Association, led by its General Secretary, Dr D.C. Sharma, and Dr B.S. Sohal and Dr Anoop Modi, met the Punjab Health Minister, Dr Baldev Raj Chawla, here last evening and conveyed to him the anguish and discontent amongst the PCMS doctors over the delay in implementation of the recommendations of the Punjab Pay Commission and redressal of other grievances of PCMS doctors.

After meeting with the minister, the spokesman of the PCMSA, Dr D.S. Bhullar, condemned the attitude of leaders of a rival faction of the PCMSA for trying to meet the minister. The PCMSA conveyed its strong protest to the minister during the meeting with him and clarified that the PCMSA was a non-political body.

The PCMSA, during the meeting, demanded the restoration of parity of pay scales of Senior Medical Officers and Civil Surgeons with Assistant Professors and Professors of state medical colleges, respectively. Dr Bhullar, demanded that the criteria of adjudging service on the basis of annual confidential reports for the purpose of granting assured career progressions at 4, 9 and 14 years of service, imposed recently by the Government, should be withdrawn. The association said the Health Minister assured the delegation that its demands would be sympathetically considered by the Government.
Top

 

No to statue irks Bishnois
Tribune News Service

DUTARANWALI (Abohar), May 17 — The decision of the authorities not to allow the installation of a statue of the Late Sant Kumar, founder of the All-India Jeev Raksha Bishnoi Sabha, here has irked the Bishnoi community.

The statue was initially proposed to be raised at the Sito Guno-Abohar crossing on the national highway, but the authorities have refused to allow its installation as it would violate certain road rules.

While the SDM, Abohar, Mr Darshan Singh Grewal, says national highway rules does not allow erection of statues on GT roads, a foundation stone for the proposed statue was laid near the crossing in 1998 by the then Punjab Forest Minister, Master Mohan Lal.

Mr Grewal says it is now for the Central Government to decide the issue. “The state authorities have no jurisdiction on the matter”.

He says the Bishnois can at best get the crossing named after the late Sant Kumar, a recipient of the Indira Gandhi Environment Award.

However, the All-India Jeev Raksha Bishnoi Sabha rejects the offer, saying it has already paid for the statue that has been prepared by a Jaipur-based artist.

The office secretary of the sabha, Mr Rakesh Kumar, asks: “Once the foundation stone is laid, how can the site of the proposed statue be shifted.” He says the sabha will approach the Chief Minister.Top

 

Sena flays Centre on TADA detainees
From Our Correspondent

PHILLAUR, May 17 — The Punjab Hindu Shiv Sena has condemned the Union Home Minister’s statement regarding the release of Punjab TADA detainees and threatened to hold countrywide demonstrations if the Union Government did not withdraw its decision.

Talking to reporters here yesterday Sena leaders urged the people to oppose the decision.
Top

 

Clothes for Bal Niketan inmates
Tribune News Service

PATIALA, May 17 — Clothes and other articles of daily use were distributed among the needy girls staying in Bal Niketan by Mrs Ravinder Kaur Bir, chairperson of the hospital welfare wing of the District Red Cross Society. The clothes were distributed on the occasion of the birthday of 17 of the 27 girls of the niketan. On the occasion, Ms Kushal Garg, President of Bal Niketan, said that since its inception more than 100 girls had been married off and all were leading happy life.
Top

 

Fazilka Bar Assn gets recognition
From Our Correspondent

FAZILKA, May 17 — The row over the recognition of the Bar Association, Fazilka, and the Fazilka Bar Association has been put to rest with a recent decision of the Chairman, Trustee Committee, Punjab and Haryana Advocates Welfare Funds.

In its decision, which comes after a period of about two years, the committee has described the Bar Association, Fazilka, headed by Mr Anil Kumar Jain as the parent body and granted recognition to it. It has rejected the claims of Mr Sushil Kumar Goomber, president of the other faction, the Fazilka Bar Association.

According to the decision of the committee of May 9, 2000, a copy of which was made available yesterday, the Bar Council, Punjab and Haryana, adopted the Punjab and Haryana Advocates Welfare Funds Rules, 1998, to promote law reforms, provide legal aid to the poor and conduct welfare schemes for the well-being of advocates
Top

 

Man stabbed in fight over pigeons
Tribune News Service

JALANDHAR, May 17 — Chance swapping of ‘homes’ by pigeons led to a big fight among their masters in the Kabir Nagar locality here yesterday, resulting in serious injuries to one of them.

Breaking away from their monotonous routine of coming back straight to their own “homes” after their day-long flight, some of the “naughty” pigeons of Lila Ram Punj accidentally landed in the holes of their counterparts in a neighbouring house belonging to one Ramesh Kumar, leading to a high drama in a locality.

Though the birds blissfully enjoyed the comforts of their neighbours, Lila Ram could not tolerate the “wrong” entry made by his birds and tried to barge into the house of Ramesh Kumar to fetch his birds back. This was objected to resulting in a verbal and a later a real duel between the two. As Lila Ram was provoked by Ramesh’s objection to let him in and take his birds, he picked up a fight with the letter and both pigeon lovers even exchanged blows.

A furious Lila Ram allegedly attacked Ramesh Kumar with a dagger and stabbed him in the chest. While an injured Ramesh was sent for medical treatment, Lila Ram has been booked under Sections 307/324 and 451 of the IPC.
Top

 

Stir by teachers suspended
From Our Correspondent

LUDHIANA, May 17 — The Joint Action Committee of four teachers’ organisations representing more than 50,000 primary teachers has decided to suspend its agitation in response to the positive attitude adopted by the state government towards their demands.

Announcing this here today, the general secretary of the Primary Teachers Association, Mr Baldev Singh Moudgil, said following district-level dharnas at Hoshiarpur and Jalandhar the JAC had held an emergent meeting at Phagwara on Saturday to take stock of the situation and to chalk out further strategy for the ongoing agitation.

The meeting observed that a memorandum submitted by the JAC to the Punjab Chief Minister, Mr Parkash Singh Badal, on May 3 had evoked positive response and it was felt that the suspension of the agitation would create a congenial atmosphere in which a settlement could be worked out.

A resolution adopted at the meeting urged the state government to retain primary directorate so that promotion channel of primary teachers remained intact. It also asked the government to appoint ETT teachers on priority basis to the 7,230 vacancies of JBT teachers and to grant higher scales to 8,500 head teachers on the basis of report of anomaly committee.Top

 

College granted recognition
Tribune News Service

LUDHIANA, May 17 — Guru Nanak Dev Homoeopathic Medical College here has been given permanent recognition by the Central Council of Homoeopathy.

The other colleges to have secured permanent recognition is Homoeopathic College, Abohar, according to official information. The recognition accorded to Homoeopathic Medical College, Chandigarh, and the Institute of Postgraduate Homoeopathic Medical Education, SAS Nagar, has been extended.
Top

 

Meeting on RBI guidelines today
Tribune News Service

LUDHIANA, May 17 — The Punjab Government has convened tomorrow at Chandigarh a meeting of representatives of 14 nationalised banks and leaders of the Northern India Federation of Industrial and Commercial Undertakings to discuss implementation of the RBI guidelines with regard to compromise settlements for sick small industrial units.

Mr Ramesh Inder Singh, Secretary, Industries, will preside.

Major points on which the banks and the units differed are: date of sickness of the unit; rate of interest to be charged which is being wrongly sought to be linked with value of the collateral security; charging of interest on the amount of the claims received from DICGC in the account of the party’ and no consideration shown where the borrower loses everything due to a natural calamity and the banks receive full claims from insurance companies.Top

Home | Punjab | Haryana | Jammu & Kashmir | Himachal Pradesh | Regional Briefs | Nation | Editorial |
|
Business | Sport | World | Mailbag | Chandigarh Tribune | In Spotlight |
50 years of Independence | Tercentenary Celebrations |
|
120 Years of Trust | Calendar | Weather | Archive | Subscribe | Suggestion | E-mail |