|Sunday, July 9, 2000,
ignored by Railways: MP
BJP factionalism comes to fore
BJP leader booked for illicit
Get lions at Renuka sterilised:
152 hamlets to remain powerless
HP ignored by Railways: MP
UNA, July 8 Mr Suresh Chandel, Lok Sabha member from the Hamirpur parliamentary constituency, said today that during the past 50 years nothing much had been done by the Railways for Himachal Pradesh and except the 16- km Nangal-Una railway line no new rail line had been provided to the state.
Addressing mediapersons here, he said the Railway Minister had agreed to extend the Nangal-Saharanpur train from Una to Hardwar but some railway officials were creating problems in this regard. He said he along with other MPs from the state would put pressure on the authorities and if need be launch an agitation in this regard.
Mr Chandel said during the past two-and-a-half years the BJP-HVC government had managed four new national highways for Himachal and said he was trying to get a fifth one.
He lashed out at Congress leaders stating that they wished to remain in news by criticising the BJP-HVC government.
He said the Parvati power project was signed by five states during the reign of then Chief Minister, Mr Shanta Kumar, but when Mr Virbhadra Singh took over as Chief Minister he cancelled the agreement and failed to get funds for the development of state.
He said yesterday he had
launched a programme to meet the people at their
doorsteps. He said on the first day he covered six
panchayats in the Gagret Vidhan Sabha constituency and
provided funds for village by roads.
BJP factionalism comes to
DHARMSALA, July 8 Absence of the local BJP, legislator and Parliamentary Secretary, Mrs Shraveen Chaudhary, at a function held in her constituency, Shahpur today, to honour the district BJP, President and MLA, Mr Dulo Ram, in the presence of Mr Shanta Kumar, has once again brought to the fore the infighting and factionalism within the state BJP.
The function was organised by Mr Kamal Padha, General Secretary of the district unit of the BJP and the Shahpur body of the party. Despite, an invitation being sent to Mrs Chaudhary, she was not present on the occasion. She was learnt to have left for Shimla, today morning.
Todays function has once indicated that all is not well in the party as it is clearly divided into the Shanta and Dhumal factions. It is only a few days back that both the Shanta and the Dhumal factions had held separate shows at Indora in Ganggath and at Nagni Mata in Nurpur. It is interesting, the ministers and MLAs belonging to one camp did not attend the function, organised by the rival groups.
At todays function, the Union Minister for Consumer Affairs, Mr Shanta Kumar, was the chief guest. The occasion was to honour the district BJP chief and MLA from Baijnath, Mr Dulo Ram, who is known to be a staunch Shanta loyalist.
Not only was the absence of Mrs Shraveen Chaudhary very conspicuous, but even her supporters preferred to stay away, from the function. Mrs Chaudhary, who was once very close to Mr Shanta Kumar, is known to have drifted away from him and openly supported the Dhumal camp.
Political observers point out that the holding of the function at Shahpur, constituency of Mrs Chaudhary, is part of a bigger plan by the Shanta camp to hit out at those who have deserted the Union Minister to join hands with the Chief Minister, Mr P.K. Dhumal. They say that such functions are likely to be held even in the future, in district Kangra, which till now has been the citadel of Mr Shanta Kumar.
It is learnt that the Dhumal faction in Kangra district is also annoyed over the raw deal given to its supporters in the constitution of the district body by Mr Dulo Ram. At the time of the election of the district president, the Dhumal camp had claimed that they had agreed to the election of Mr Dulo Ram, only after getting an assurance that their man would get plum positions like that of the General Secretary, in the district body.
It appears that the
Shanta camp is in a mood to build up pressure on the
Dhumal faction by holding them own functions. The issue
of corruption being raised by Mr Shanta Kumar and his
staunch men in the recent past has already caused much
embarrassment to the state government.
BJP leader booked for
NAHAN, July 8 A case of illicit felling against Ex-District President of the BJP Sirmaur District who is also member of state executive committee has been registered at Shillai police station.
Superintendent of Police, Sirmaur S.P. Singh said here today that Shillai Range Officer on July 7 lodged a report at Shillai Police Station alleging that illicit felling was noticed in reserved forest Shri Kayari (C-6) adjoining private land.
He said that 11 precious Kail trees were felled illegally in this forest cost of which had been estimated at Rs one lakh. In this matter three persons including Laxman Kumar, Assistant Manager Forest Corporation Paonta, Basti Ram of Drabil and Heera Singh Thakur had been held responsible for alleged illicit felling.
The Superintendent of
Police said that Basti Ram son of Tulsi Ram had felled 62
Pine trees on this private land without permission from
Forest Department. Value of these trees is to be
assessed. The police has registered a case u/s 379, 34 of
the IPC. Investigations are on and no arrest has been
made so far. BJP leader was not available for comments.
Get lions at Renuka
SHIMLA, July 8 The Central Zoo Authority (CZA) has asked the Wildlife Department here to get the lions at the Renuka Safari sterilised because they are suffering from serious inbreeding problems due to which many cubs have died.
It is reliably learnt that the CZA has made the recommendation following a visit of its team to the Renuka Lions Safari in Sirmaur district. The team was invited here to study the genetic problem due to which the lions were suffering from symptoms of partial paralysis in the neck after a particular age. The mortality rate among lions was high in the safari and at least four cubs have died during the past few months.
To prevent further inbreeding, the CZA has also permitted the wildlife authorities to bring a lion from outside for cross-breeding in the safari. Some zoos in the south were being contacted for the purpose.
The wildlife authorities claim that the inborn error of staggering among the lions were being caused due to lack of cross-breeding. The lions in the safari and also at the Gopalpur Zoo in Kangra and Rewalsar belong to a single family. Inbreeding problems were also being faced in these zoos. One pair of lions each was sent to Gopalpur and Rewalsar from the safari sometime ago. A lion was recently transferred to the Gopalpur Zoo from the safari.
The authorities are seeking the help of experts from the Chhatbir Zoo, near Chandigarh, for sterilising the lions as there is hardly any people trained to do the job here. The experts in Palampur University are also being contacted for the purpose.
The safari has 18 lions in an area of less than 7 hectares which is much below the specifications as each animal is required to have about 2 hectares of area at its disposal.
The CZA has reportedly asked the authorities to construct proper shelter for the lions and also administer timely vaccinations to them.
Although the zoo at Renuka was converted into a safari in 1996, with a single pair of lions, no veterinary doctor has so far been posted there in spite of the guidelines of the CZA although the number of offsprings of the pair has increased to 18.
The animals are sent
about 350 km away to Palampur for treatment in case of
any health problem as the veterinary hospital at the
nearby Dadahu is not equipped for handling them.
Moreover, there is no tranquilising gun available at the
152 hamlets to remain
SHIMLA, July 8 About 152 hamlets in Himachal Pradesh will remain unelectrified as the state government was not availing loans for the purpose from the Rural Electrification Corporation (REC).
This was stated here yesterday by the general secretary of the Himachal Power Engineers Association while talking to newsmen about the reforms being undertaken by the government in the power sector. He said the government had stopped releasing matching grants for the REC loans and this would result in denying electric supply to the non-census hamlets.
Mr S.N. Kapoor, president of the association, said the government should take a realistic view of the move for reforms in the power sector.
The All-India Power Engineers Federation (AIPEF) has already decided to oppose the reforms proposed by the World Bank and has demanded that discussions should be held with employees and consumers to design a pro-people real reform package.
He said the Electricity Bill 2000 proposed by the Centre was a "hasty, unwarranted, unjustified and an ill-conceived idea with the ulterior objective of selling economic India. The bill was a clear favouritism to the multi-national companies that would take over the power sector for their vested interests and profit-making without any cap on profits.
They pointed out that AIPEF had warned that the electricity employees would resort to a one-day mass demonstration in front of Parliament on August 9 in case the government failed to take appropriate and corrective measures as suggested by the employee organisations.
Leaders of the
association said the state government seemed determined
to put the HPSEB on the path of privatisation. Money
raised through bonds worth Rs 725 crore by the HPSEB had
been adjusted in one go against all loans, interest and
amount relating to free power up to 2001. Against the
approved budgetary support of Rs 63 crore only Rs 3.5
crores were provided last year.
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