|Tuesday, June 27, 2000,
Cong set to expose HP govt
refutes ministers charges
Fish production up by 26 pc
Poor phone service irks residents
Karmapas 15th birthday celebrated
DHARAMSALA, June 26 Even as the decision on the status of the 17th Karmapa, Ogyen Trinley Dorjee, hangs in uncertainty, hundreds of Tibetans converged upon the Gyuto monastery, despite the heavy rain, to felicitate the head of the Kagyu sect on his 15th birthday today.
Hundreds of Tibetans, holding umbrellas, waited anxiously outside the monastery, the abode of the Karmapa since his arrival here on January 5, to catch a glimpse of the boy, who shot to international fame when he fled from Tibet to escape religious repression by the Chinese authorities.
The ceremony began with the Karmapa prostrating before the portrait of the Tibetan spiritual and temporal leader, Dalai Lama, to seek his blessings. Thereafter, a senior regent of the Karma Kagyu sect, Tai Situ Rinpoche, prayed for the well-being and long life of the Karmapa. This was followed by other religious gurus and monks praying for the long life and safety of the Karmapa. They also offered idols and other gifts of Tibetan gods and goddesses.
The Chief Justice of the Tibetan government, the Deputy Chairman of the Tibetan parliament the Chairman of the Kashag (Tibetan cabinet) and senior ministers of the government-in exile offered traditional Tibetan scarves and other gifts to the Karmapa.
To complete the ceremony, the Karmapa cut a cake which was distributed amongst all those present on the occasion. His elder sister, Ngodup Palzom, who had fled with him from Tibet, also wished her brother on his birthday by offering him a silken scarf.
Tenzin Namgyal, a representative of the Karma Kagyu sect, which is headed by the Karmapa, informed that during his stay here the Karmapa was receiving empowerment, transmission and instructions as per the Kagyu tradition from Tai Situ Rinpoche, mind training from his tutor, Trangu Rinpoche, and lessons in dialectics, literature and poetry from Khenpo Tashi Gyaltsen. He prayed that the Karmapa should excel in the study of Buddha dharma in general and Jagyu in particular.
Legal literacy camp held
PALAMPUR, June 26 A one-day legal literacy camp was organised at Baijnath today by the District Legal Aid Authority, Kangra. Over 400 panchayat pardhans, members of mahila mandals and other elected representatives from different parts of the region attended the camp. The object of the camp was to educate people living in the rural and far-flung areas about the free legal aid scheme launched by the government.
Addressing the camp, Mr V.K. Ahuja, District and Sessions Judge-cum-Chairman of the District Legal Aid Authority, said under the free legal aid programme, the government was committed to provide free legal aid to those who were unable to contest their cases because of poverty. He said in all sub divisions and at district headquarters legal aid authority had set up a panel of lawyers who would provide free legal aid to all covered under this scheme. He said the litigants were at liberty to choose a lawyer of their choice from the panel. A person having income less than Rs 25,000 per annum could get benefit of this scheme. Besides, all women are also covered under free legal aid scheme. The government would bear all legal expenses included the money to be paid to the witnesses.
He said though there
were adequate funds available for the scheme with the
legal aid authority the response from the public was
poor. He told panchayat pardhans that persons entitled to
free legal aid should come forward without hesitation and
must get benefit of the scheme. Mr Ahuja said panchayat
representatives could play a significant role to educate
the poor and downtrodden about the free legal aid
Cong set to expose HP govt
SHIMLA, June 26 The Congress which maintained a low profile over the past two years is all set to launch an offensive on the BJP-HVC coalition by coming out with a charge sheet to expose the acts of commission and omission of the government.
The charge sheet, the party sources assure, will not be merely a political document but one supported with solid evidence on the irregularities and acts of corruption committed by those at the helm of affairs.
The party has planned a multi-pronged attack by taking the charge sheet only to the public but also the Lokayukta and the High Court. It will print about 50,000 copies of the charge sheet and simultaneously file affidavits with the Lokayukta in support of the charges. Besides, it also plans to move the High Court to get criminal cases registered against the political functionaries and officers responsible for irregularities or involved in corruption.
A senior party leader said a five-member committee, set up to frame the charge sheet, had already toured the state and collected bulk of evidence which was being scrutinised. The finalisation of the charge sheet was being delayed as the charges ran into hundreds whereas the party wanted to take up only serious and important ones. The committee was going through the charges and the available evidence. The charges of serious nature particularly those involving ministers, would be pursued vigorously at all levels.
The copies of charge sheet will be distributed among the people to expose the "misdeeds" of the government. The party will also launch a mass campaign to generate wide debate on the charges.
The move of the Congress has enlivened the political scene and the leaders of the ruling and the opposition have already started trading charges. Mr Mohinder Singh, PWD Minister, who was being targeted by the Congress, had launched a counter-offensive by levelling serious allegations of corruption against some senior Congress leaders who were assigned the task of framing the charge sheet.
Interestingly, instead of HVC supremo Sukh Ram, the PWD Minister was targeting former Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh now. He had demanded immediate action on a charge sheet submitted by the HVC against the Congress leader more than two years ago.
The action of the
Congress may provoke the coalition to pursue the charges
against Mr Virbhadra Singh vigorously and this will set
the stage for an intense political battle between the
ruling combine and the Congress.
Congress refutes ministers
SHIMLA, June 26 The district unit of the Congress (Rural) Committee has dismissed the allegations of corruption levelled by Mr Mohinder Singh, Public Works Minister, against certain senior party leaders as "not worthy of a response" and challenged the minister to file a complaint with the Lok Ayukta.
In a joint statement here today, Mr Pratap Chauhan, Mr Darshan Thakur and Mr Vidya Sagar, president, vice-president and general secretary of the committee, respectively, said the charge sheet being prepared by the Congress had unnerved Mr Mohinder Singh, who had started making wild allegations against the members of the committee set up for framing the charge sheet. They alleged that the Public Works Minister, who had become a symbol of corruption, was trying to malign others.
They pointed out that there was no vested interest in construction of the Wazir Bawari-Jhakri Road which was, in fact, part of The Nathpa-Jhakri project. It would provide a bypass to Rampur town and benefit people of remote areas in Kulu district. Only recently, Mr P.K. Dhumal, Chief Minister, had sought funds from the Union Energy Minister for completing the road.
They also denied that
there was irregularity in awarding work for the
construction of a hospital at Rampur. Instead of making
wild allegations the minister should inform people about
the outcome of investigations into the bitumen emulsion
scam, they advised.
Video album shooting begins
PARWANOO, June 26 The shooting of video album Mahi Mahi started here today in the lawns of a park situated on the Parwanoo barrier. The shooting was done on an Army tank which has kept been in the park as a monument.
The album is being made by Catrack Cassette Industry of Mumbai. The company is also having its office at Chandigarh. The songs in the cassette are by a group known as Punjabi Munde, the Jagtar and Satnam group. Some of the songs will also be filmised near Nada Sahib in Panchkula.
This is the first music group of Punjab and is a blend of Bhangra and Sufi style of songs and dance. The video story is based on love story of Sohni-Mahiwal.
The company also completed the shooting of another album Aja-Aja Parosin at Nalagarh yesterday.
Panchayat panel chief threatens
SHIMLA, June 26 The Himachal Panchayat Parishad has critised the campaign of the state administration to prevent zila parishad chief from using red light and flag rods on their vehicles.
Mr B.S. Thakur, President of the parishad, said the state government was adopting double standards on the issue. While vehicles of heads of zila parishads were being challaned, no action was being taken against chairpersons of various boards and corporations for violating the flag code as they belonged to the ruling party.
He also alleged the government was not following the directions of Centre regarding the Employment Assurance Scheme as per which 70 per cent of the funds were to be given to panchayat samiti and 30 per cent to zila parishad. But in Himachal no funds had been given to these institutions so far. He also charged the government with changing the parameters for constitution of panchayat without the approval of Vidhan Sabha. The minimum population required for setting up a panchayat had been increased from 1000 to 1200.
Past and present of Gosains
KANGRA: Enterprising and sagacious members of the Gosain caste live in Himachal Pradesh. They live in the neighbourhood Nadun, Jawalamukhi, Suraj Kund, Caker Kund in Kangra town, Charri, Banala, Shahpur, Sameerpur, Palampur, Bandla, Bijrri and Sual (Hamirpur), Trangdoo, Joginder Nagar, Mandi, Kotla and Jadrangal near Chamunda.
The Gosains are distinguished by the general name of Dasnami or Sanisasi and are divided into 10 sects. The patronymics used by Gosains are Giri, Puri, Bharti, Sagar, Swarsati, Parwat, Arani, Teerath, Van and Akshaim.
The founder of the Goasain caste was Shanker Acharaj, whose 10 pupils became partriarchs of the 10 sects.
By rules, they should live a life of celibacy, recruiting their ranks by adopting disciples from pure sects. But in these hills this prohibition is seldom observed, and most of the Gosains yield to the temptation of marriage. Sons, however, are not eligible to succeed their fathers. Those who marry are styled "gharbari" and live by agriculture. "Mattdari" Gosains remain in religious communities, and they do not marry.
The ceremony of admitting a disciple is simple. His choti the tuft at the crown of his head, is first severed by the Guru, or Master. The hair is then closely shaven, and the Guru Mantra or incantation is given to him.
The Gosains are sub-divided into small colleges (Akhara), each with a recognised head or mahant, who controls all the property. The other Akhara members are dependent upon his bounty. When a mahant feels that his end is near, he nominates one of his disciples to succeed him. His selection is seldom disputed. If a mahant dies without nominating his successor, the fraternity of Gosains elects one among them.
After the installation ceremony the new mahant distributes the deceased mahants assets. In this ceremony he is guided by no rule, but simply by his estimate of each disciple.
Gosains are devoted to Lord Shiva (Mahadeo) and build his temples near their houses. Gosains body is not burnt but buried, and Samadh raised at the spot which is invariably near their houses.
At Chamunda the houses of the Gosains are near the Nandkeshwar temple and their Samadhies are also within the same premises.
The President of H.P. Dasnami Gosain Kalayankari Saba, Captain Mehar Chand Gosain, has urged the government to declare the Gosain community as a backward class.
The population of the
Gosains has declined over the years. In 1911 Gosains were
1226 in Kangra district and the figure came to 1220 in
1921. Mr Barnes, a historian, claimed that the Gosains
used to be the wealthiest in the district. But the
Mahajans and the Soods have outshined them.
Fish production up by 26 pc
SHIMLA, June 26 The intensive stocking of seed and the provision of subsidised quality fishing nets to over 3000 fishermen of Pong reservoir has helped in raising fish production to 453 tonnes during 1999-2000 an increase of 26 per cent over the preceding year-and the highest in the past decade.
The value of the harvested fish was Rs 218 lakh and the state Fisheries Department realised a revenue of over Rs 35.00 lakh.
Major fish species found in abundance were singhara, mahseer, rohu, mirror carp and catla.
Singhara, the much sought after fish, contributed as high as 56 per cent of the total catch. Similarly the world known golden masheer contributed 20 per cent with the cumulative production of 90 tonnes during the year. Out of the 14 landing centres located in the different strategic areas, the maximum landings were recorded at Nagrota Surian, Dehra, Guglara, Khatiar and Haripur.
In view of the qualitative superiority of the reservoir, fishermen got the highest per unit price of their fish.
As many as 2934 licences were issued to 1943 fishermen belonging to 14 cooperative societies. The total number of fish caught was over three lakh.
Pong reservoir is the only water-bowl in the country where approximately 100 tonnes of mahseer (golden) is caught each year. The reservoir is probably the only hope for the anglers. Mahseer catch is showing consistent increase for the past one decade. As compared to 50 tonnes during 1993-94 the landing during 1999-2000 were 90 tonnes. About 200 angling licences were issued during the year.
The government plans to
increase the production level to 600 tonnes by 2002
through intensive stocking of commercially important
species, revision of mesh-size of nets being operated in
reservoirs production of mahseer fish, and the
construction of anglers lodge. Emphasis will be laid on
fishermens welfare schemes, their training,
initiation of collaboration programmes with national
institutes on refinement of nets and introduction of fast
moving boats, collaborative studies with the ICAR on fish
rearing in floating nets and the setting up fish
processing units in the private sector.
Poor phone service irks
KUMARHATTI, June 26 In spite of the efforts being made by the Department of Telecom to modernise the telecom infrastucture in the state, residents of the area, including Dagshai, Himmatpur Dawli, Bhoti, Barog and Anhech, are a harassed lot these days due to the non-functioning of telephones specially during the evening hours.
"We can make or receive even local calls and, the problem gets aggravated on Sundays when all efforts to dial a number virtually end in Lines are busy' message, laments a subscriber from Himmatpur Dawli.
In the beginning of this month, telephones at Barog remained out of order for more than 15 days due to the failure of Barog Telephone Exchange, Ajay, a STD-PCO booth owner at Barog said. A similar situation prevails at Dagshai Telephone Exchange where officials allegedly do not even bother to mail the telephone bills to subscribers.
However, sources in the Telecom Department maintain that the faults are due to a snag in the Dharampur exchange to which other small exchanges are connected. They claim that the snag has been rectified and now there is no problem with the telecom network.
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