Thursday, July 26, 2001,
Chandigarh, India


R E G I O N A L   B R I E F S


  • Who will win “Himachal Cup”?

  • A ghazal singer of promise

  • MC turns blind eye to encroachers


ELECTED: Mr Ramesh Kumar Gupta 'Meshi' was elected Vice-President of the Municipal Council on Tuesday. Ten out of 12 councillors voted for Mr Gupta and the remaining two abstained from voting.

OFFICE-BEARERS: The following have been elected office-bearers of the Youth Services Club; president — Mr Makhan Singh; vice-president — Mr Mewa Singh; general secretary — Mr Harmel Singh and finance secretary — Mr Nirbhai Singh.

AGITATION SUPPORTED: The Punjab State General Category Welfare Federation in a meeting held at the local Government Senior Secondary School on Sunday passed a resolution to support the ETT teachers’ agitation and urged the Chief Minister, Mr Parkash Singh Badal and Mr Tota Singh, Education Minister, to appoint the ETT unemployed teachers on preferential basis. Mr Rajesh Kumar, vice-president, Mr Jaswinder Singh, district general secretary, addressed the meeting. Mr Zora Singh Grewal presided over the meeting.

OFFICE-BEARERS: The following have been elected office-bearers of the new branch of the Emergency Blood Club: president — Mr Sanjeev Chauhan; general secretary — Mr Rajesh Negi; vice-president — Mr Jai Kishan; assistant secretary — Mr Rakesh Kumar and treasurer — Mr Kaka.

PATWARI KILLED: Gurdip Singh (32) of Dhani Shaffi, working as patwari at Chack Pakhi village, died on the spot while Balraj Singh (30) of Abohar, also a patwari of Mummu Khera village, was seriously injured when their scooter collided with a tractor-trailer near Khui Khera village, 13 km from here. The injured was rushed to the local Civil Hospital.

FREQUENT POWER CUTS: Frequent power cuts for the past one week have paralysed normal life in the district. The condition of power supply to Pathankot, Dina Nagar, Dhariwal and Batala towns is equally bad. The residents of rural areas of the district hardly get three hours’ power supply during the day. People frequently complain about the damage to electrical gadgets because of fluctuating voltage.

MUTATION ENTRIES: The district administration has launched a special drive to enter all pending mutations up to August 15. The Deputy Commissioner has directed all patwaris to make a proclamation (mustri munadi) in their respective jurisdictions in this regard. The land owners have been requested to bring sale deeds, wills, death certificates of land owners and mortgage deeds to get the mutations entered. In case of any problem of harassment by any official, the matter may immediately be reported to the respective SDMs, he said.

12 INJURED: Twelve passengers were injured when the driver of a Punjab Roadways bus of Nawanshahr depot lost control over the bus and it dashed into a tree near Chagran, 5 km from here, on the Hoshiarpur-Chandigarh road on Tuesday.

CHOWKIDAR ASSAULTED: Jagat Ram, a chowkidar of the Motla protection bandh of Dasuya drainage subdivision, was seriously injured when Balwinder Singh and Surinder Singh of Motla village assaulted him with sharp-edged weapons on Monday. He was admitted to Civil Hospital, Mukerian. It was reported that a dispute arose when Balwinder Singh and Surinder Singh were stopped by the chowkidar from grazing their animals in the protection bandh area. The police has registered a case.

BOATS PRESENTED: Dr Upinderjit Kaur, Urban Development Minister, Punjab, on Tuesday handed over two big boats to residents of island villages in the Beas in Sultanpur Lodhi subdivision. Addressing at a function at Pasaan Kadim village, she said Mr Parkash Singh Badal, Chief Minister, had promised to provide these two big boats on residents’ demand. The boats have been constructed at a cost of Rs 3 lakh.

TREE PLANTATION: The Rail Coach Factory (RCF) on Wednesday launched sapling plantation drive to make the factory premises environment-friendly. The RCF General Manager, Mr K.R. Govindarajan, inaugurated the drive by planting a sapling in the factory school. He disclosed that already there were more than two lakh trees in the factory and the factory had been awarded the prestigious international award of ISO-14001 for eco-friendliness.

NIGHT PATROLLING: In view of the increase in violent incidents in Fatehgarh Sahib district, Dr R.N. Dhoke, SSP, met senior police officers and asked them to intensify night patrolling. He urged people to inform the police immediately on spotting dubious elements.

UNIFORMS DISTRIBUTED: Mr Gurkirat Singh Kotli, secretary of Punjab Pardesh Congress Committee, distributed uniforms to needy students of Government High School at Chamo (Maloud) village, 24 km from here. Speaking on the occasion, he said the SAD-BJP government, instead of paying attention to the old and dilapidated buildings of various schools, was more interested in laying foundation stones in order to remain in news. Those present on the occasion included Mr Amardeep Matkhan and Mr Surinder Dhingra, municipal councillor.

EXCLUSION OF VILLAGES: In a joint statement, Mr Onkar Rai Mehta, president, Municipal Council; Mr Ashok Kumar, president, City Congress Committee; Mr Paramjit Singh, CPI councillor; and Mr Lakhvir Singh, district president of the Sarab Hind Shiromani Akali Dal; have alleged that the SAD-BJP government was all set to exclude Alour and other villages from Khanna tehsil and make them a part of Amloh tehsil. While these villages were just 2 km from the former, they were 15 km from the latter. The Municipal Council would lose Rs 5 crore annually with the exclusion of the villages, the leaders said adding that it would hamper the implementation of water and sewerage schemes, for which the MC had contributed Rs 2.13 crore. They said if the proposal was implemented, the development of the town would take a beating.

FUND ALLOCATED: Mr Shamsher Singh Dullo, senior Congress leader, told mediapersons that he had toured 745 villagers of Ropar constituency and allocated Rs 2.25 crore for various projects in its villages. He criticised the Badal government for starting sangat darshan programmes, and alleged that it had failed in maintaining law and order situation in the state. Mr Dullo said the number of violent incidents was increasing in the state and innocent people had been murdered and looted at Sirhind and Mandi Gobindgarh recently in two separate incidents. He added that those belonging to a rural party were indulging in encroachments. Mr Dullo alleged that money meant for the Punjab Schedule Caste Corporation was being diverted to the Punjab State Electricity Board, and that the poor were not getting ration on yellow cards. He expressed his confidence that the Congress would come to power after the next Assembly election, and assured that it would look for the welfare of the downtrodden.

MEETING: A meeting of the Multipurpose Supervisors of the district was held here on Wednesday at the Civil Surgeon’s office under the presidentship of the District Health Officer, Dr R.C. Garg. Dr Ajit Singh Chawla, district epidimologist, discussed the causes and remedies of various water-borne diseases, like jaundice, typhoid and diarrhoea, gastroenteritis and cholera. He said contaminated food and water, rotten fruits, eatables exposed to flies, were the main causes of diseases. Dr Chawla stressed on the consumption of chlorinated boiled water, proper covering of eatables, intake of hot and fresh food and the maintenance of hygienic conditions around. He suggested that home-made Oral Rehydration Solution (ORS) was one of the best precautionary measures. In case of emergency, people must call for a doctor or contact Health Department officials in their control room at phone number 444193, he added.

PRIZE DISTRIBUTION FUNCTION: The local unit of the Akhil Bharatiya Vidyarthi Parishad would organise a prize distribution function on Thursday for the students of local colleges, who had secured first three positions in BA, BSc. and BCom examination conducted by the Panjab University, at Bhartiya Vidya Mandir, Shaheed Udham Singh Nagar. Giving this information, Mr Sandeep Kapoor, president, said the programme would encourage the toppers to achieve better results next year. Dr K.S. Aulakh, Vice Chancellor, Punjab Agricultural University, would be the chief guest on the occasion, he said.

FAKE DEGREE CASE: Dr R.P. Singh, Principal, Guru Nanak Dev Engineering College (GNDE), has claimed that his college had no involvement in the fake degree case registered a fortnight ago. Stating this in a press note, Dr R.P. Singh said investigations made by him revealed that the blank certificates, which had been stolen during the racket, bore the name of Science and Technology Entrepreneur Park (STEP), an independent institution offering short duration courses and located close to the college campus. The principal said the person found guilty for supplying the certificates was also an employee of the same organisation. He said all degrees distributed to students in his college were issued by the Punjab Technical University and did not bear signature of the university. Therefore, he said blank certificates could not be stolen from the college.

VISIT: Mr V. K. Kashyap, Deputy General Manager of the Oriental Bank of Commerce, Ludhiana region, paid a special visit to the local branch of the bank on Tuesday. Mr Paramjit Singh Grover, branch manager, briefed him about the bank’s working. Mr Kashyap listened to the problems and suggestions of the customers, and apprised them of various loan facilities being provided by the bank, including housing loan, study loan, vehicle loan, consumer loan, etc.

OFFICE-BEARERS: The following have been elected office-bearers of All-India Anti-Terrorist Front, Fatehgarh Sahib district: president — Mr Vishwa Nath Bishi; vice-president — Mr Vijay Kumar Babbli; Mr Sanjiv Kumar, Mr Kuldeep Happy, Mr Balwant Sodhi, Mr Tarlochan Singh and Mr Tilak Raj; general secretaries — Mr Gurmeet Singh Rattu and Mr Vijay Kumar; joint secretaries — Mr Mohan Lal Sharma, Mr Sudhir Kumar, Mr Pardeep Kumar Gogga and Mr Habjulan Pear Khan; and secretary — Mr Hadveen. The following office-bearers have been elected for Mandi Gobindgarh block of Anti-Terrorist Front: president — Mr Sushil Sharma; general secretary — Mr Sudhir Jain; and secretaries — Mr Surinder Subedar, Mr Gobind Ram and Mr Dharam Singh.

YOGA CAMP: A yoga camp was held at Central State Library here on Wednesday under the guidance of Mr Munni Lal Kumra. A demonstration was given by Mr Kumra on ways and means to get rid of mental tension, high blood pressure, bulkiness and on how to control sugar in elderly persons. Mr R.S Gill, Director, State Transport, who is also the president of the Punjab Yoga Association, distributed prizes. The Virk memorial yoga competition was also held.

SABHA’S PLEA: With the poor and downtrodden are being ignored, those making good living are preferred to draw ration in Sunder Nagar. Stating this here on Wednesday, the Sunder Nagar Sudhar Sabha said the senior citizens, widows and poor persons who have no source of income were deprived of drawing rations. Dr Veerbhav Mehta, its president, requested the officials concerned to give justice to the genuine people so that they could get their share of ration in addition to the other class people.

INAUGURATED: Mr Kharak Singh Cheema, District Education Officer, inaugurated the first aid education camp held at Bhadson here on Wednesday. Mr Cheema urged the teaching faculty to encourage the children to participate in such activities. Nearly 224 students and teachers from Bhadson, Malewal, Agol, Badhi, Bnacha, Kora and Mangewal areas are participating in this four-day camp held in Green Fields High School.

IDENTIFICATION CARDS: The Punjab State Electricity Board, in a press note issued here on Wednesday, ordered its employees to make their identification cards so that they can show the same when they go for checking purposes or other purpose to the consumers.

OFFICE-BEARERS: Mr Harjit Singh has been elected as president of the Punjab PWD Employees Union. The other office-bearers are: chairman — Mr Harjeet Singh; general secretary — Mr Sanjeev Kumar; vice-presidents — Mr Beant Singh and Mr Gulshan Kumar; and cashier — Mr Avtar Kumar.

ELECTED: Mr Roop Lal Bagga has been elected as president of the Punjab Medical Laboratory Attendant Association. The other office-bearers are: senior vice-president — Mrs Rani Devi; general secretary — Mr Kishan Chand; joint secretary — Mr Gurbaksh Singh; cashier — Mr Hardev Singh; and assistant cashier — Mr Kesar Singh.

CLUB: Ms Ramesh Rajput has been elected as president of the Inner Wheel Club, Patiala. The other office-bearers are: secretary — Ms Neelam Khosla; vice-president — Ms Kuljeet Banga; and treasurer — Ms Dolly Sadana.

‘GOVT RUINING ECONOMY’: Addressing a huge gathering at Khattran village, near here, Mr Malkiat Singh Ghuman, a member of the Central Committee of the Lok Bhalai Party, said though Punjab was on the threshold of financial emergency as per a statement of the Minister of State for Finance in the Union Government, the Badal government was distributing grants to villages falling under the important constituencies of Punjab with an eye on the rural votes. He added that loans were being taken from banks and money was being taken out from the Mandi Board for this purpose. This was being done only to befool the public without bothering about the state economy, he added.



PROTEST: Members of the Haryana Roadways Workers Union (HRWU), Chandigarh depot, on Wednesday took part in the nationwide strike called by the Sarv Karmachari Sangh, Haryana, the Akhil Bharatiya Rajya Sarkari Karmachari Mahasangh and the Kendriya Sarkari Karmachari Parisangh against the economic policies of the BJP-led Union Government, an HRWU press note stated. The workers were addressed by various HRWU office-bearers including Mr Lalchand Pulewala, Mr Trilochan Singh Bawa, Mr Subhash Bhalla, Mr Jawahar Lal and others. Mr Trilochan Singh Bawa, vice-president of the HRWU, said the state government was planning to retrench one lakh employees in the name of right-sizing the government departments, the press note said.

DHARNA: On a call of the regional committee of the Finance Corporation of India Executive Staff Union, a large number of the employees of the Food Corporation of India staged a day-long dharna in front of their regional office, Punjab here on Wednesday. They were protesting against the issuance of charge-sheets and imposition of penalties on the employees on the pretext of storage losses, destination shortage and quality complaints. The union spokesman said the next phase of agitation would start in front of the FCI headquarter in New Delhi on July 30.

MEETING: The co-ordination committee of the Central Government Pensioners Associations will hold its 10th annual general body meeting on Sunday at Government Museum and Art Gallery auditorium, a statement issued here on Wednesday said. The statement added that issues slated to be discussed during the meeting include delay in opening a central government health services dispensary in the city, enhancement of medical allowance and reimbursement of medical claims and anomalies created by the recommendations of the Fifth Pay Commission.

STRIKE: On a call given by the National Federation of Central Government Employees and Workers Federation, members of the Punjab Civil Accounts Association observed a strike on Wednesday in protest against the policies of the Central Government. A statement issued here said that their demands include stopping the contract system in jobs, stopping abolition of vacant posts and putting a hold on downsizing and retrenchment of employees.

DHARNA: The Panjab University Non-Teaching Employees Federation will hold a two-hour symbolic dharna in front of the Vice-Chancellor’s office on Thursday against the ‘interference’ of the government in internal affairs of the university. The federation is also protesting against the ‘arbitrary’ cuts applied by the government in giving grants to the university.

FLAYED: In a joint statement issued by Mr Hans Raj Aggarwal, Mr Sanjeev Babbar, Mr B.M. Kumawat and Mr B.M. Khanna, all office-bearers of the Traders Welfare Association, Sector 37, they criticised the role of the Chandigarh Administration for “issuing notices” to shopkeepers of shop-cum-offices in the city in general and Sector 37 shopkeepers in particular. This was stated in a press note.

WORKSHOP: Jan Shikshan Sansthan, Chandigarh, organised a workshop on ‘Population and Development Education’ at Government High School, Dadu Majra, on Monday. Nealy 60 neo-literates participated in it in which discussions were held on HIV\AIDS\STD, importance of literacy in day-to-day activities, adoption of small family norms. Mr Arjun Kamboj, Director of the sansthan, asked the neo-literates to come regularly in the continuing education centres and update their knowledge by reading newspapers, magazines available in the centre. Ms Sudesh Kalra, Deputy Director, Adult Education of Chandigarh, Dr Dazy Zarabi, Regional Resource Centre of Panjab University and Dr Nareshan. Society for Social Health, addressed the participants.



PLEA: Members of the Haryana Exporters Association, Ambala Cantonment, have sent telegrams to the Union Minister, Mr Ram Vilas Paswan, pointing out that a large number of telephones have been out of order for the past 15 days. The association said, “The business of Ambala exporters is suffering which is a loss of foreign exchange to the country apart from loss to exportes. The exporters are not able to establish contact with their buyers”, according to a press note of the association.

PROTEST: The Ambala unit of the All-India Central Ground Water Board Employees Association held a demonstration in protest against the “anti-employee” policy of the government. It was held under the presidentship of Mr S.K. Meena. Among others, the demands of the association include ban on privatisation, end to contract system, the existing facilities should not be taken back and the labour and pension laws should not be amended.

TWO ARRESTED: Two persons were arrested from near the Sessions Court complex on Wednesday. Mantu, alias Harinder, and Nishan Singh, who were wanted in an attempt to murder case, were nabbed by a police team from the Mahesh Nagar police station. Two knives were also recovered from them.

SAINIK SCHOOL DAY: The Haryana Chief Secretary, Mr L.M. Goyal, on Tuesday presided over the Foundation Day of Sainik School, Kunjpura. Mr Goyal said the military training was necessary to cultivate discipline and it should be provided to all students. Commander Amitabh Bhattacharya, Principal, informed that the school had been awarded Defence Minister’s trophy for sending maximum number of students to the National Defence Academy.

BODY FOUND: The body of Jaipal (40) was found hanging in his house at Asawarpur village, about 15 km from here, on Tuesday. The police believe it to be a case of suicide.

SUICIDE BID: A youth named Radesh was reported to have taken cephos tablets in a bid to commit suicide in his house at Deepalpur village, about 13 km from here, on Tuesday. According to a report, he was rushed to the local Civil Hospital and was stated to be out of danger.

MAN KILLED: Joginder (25) was killed on the spot and two persons, including his father and a woman, were seriously injured when they were attacked by a group of persons with lathis and sharp-edged weapons at Khubru village, about 25 km from here, on Tuesday. According to a report, the injured namely Inder Singh and Sumitra, were immediately hospitalised. The Ganaur police has registered a case.

CLERK ARRESTED: The police arrested Rajesh, a clerk in the tehsil office here, on Tuesday in connection with a complaint of receiving a bribe of Rs 1,800 from a resident of Delhi. According to a report, a case under the Prevention of Corruption Act has been registered. The Deputy Commissioner has placed him under suspension.

ROAD ACCIDENT: Pardeep of Gopalpur village was killed when he was hit by a truck at Kharkhauda town, 19 km from here, on Tuesday. The police has registered a case against the driver of the truck.


ANIMALS RESCUED: The Divisional Forest Officer (DFO), Dalhousie, has rescued two bears and two monkeys from a charmer at Banikhet on Tuesday. The animals have been taken into custody under the Wildlife Protection Act and sent to the Gopalpur zoo in Kangra district. According to official sources, the charmer was carrying these wild animals on his way from Pathankot to Dalhousie.

INADEQUATE STAFF: Due to the lack of adequate staff at Udaipur Government Primary School in Chewa panchayat near here, teachers have to take two classes at the same time in one classroom. In every classroom, two blackboards of inferior quality are being kept and the students of two classes have to adjust themselves in the little space available in the room. The school has no electricity connection though the electric fittings have been installed.

OPERATED: Thirtynine patients of leprosy were operated upon under the reconstructive surgery in a modify leprosy elimination campaign of the World Bank project in a three days’ camp at the ESI Hospital under the second phase of the programme. The camp was concluded on Tuesday, according to Dr K. Nath, SMO, ESI Hospital, Parwanoo.



Who will win “Himachal Cup”?

EVERYTHING is fair in love and war is an incomplete saying: the word politics should be added to it. “Net practice” for an interesting political cricket match this time in Himachal Pradesh for the Himachal Cup final, that comes after every five years (Assembly elections) is due to be held in March, 2003. But rather surprisingly, the net practice started early. There are roughly about 560 full days, and in terms of hours— roughly 13,450 — left for the crucial final which is bound to be very fascinating. Interestingly, the two major teams to be pitched in a straight battle are PK XI led by BJP’s professor- turned-politician, Chief Minister P.K.Dhumal and the Raja’s XI led by the Leader of the Opposition, Mr Virbhadra Singh

Similarly over the past two decades when you think of the Congress, the charismatic name of Virbhadra Singh, comes up. In H.P. today the Congress without the king is something like fish without water or a man without soul. But one common thing both these captains commonly enjoy is that both are popular and respected and are acknowledged as “gentlemen captains” of their respective teams.

The profile of PK XI team is that in 1990 when a hung assembly had emerged in Himachal Pradesh, the BJP and the Congress were locked with 30 “runs” each and all the rules of the game of cricket were ignored. Both these teams were seen running into each other’s dressing rooms to get four “runs” (4 MLAs). But the real hero of that spectacular innings was Pandit Sukh Ram who had these “runs” up his sleeve. He enabled the gentleman-professor to form the next government with the support of his HVC. Thus, the professor became captain of the team.

The choices in selecting and posting the right kind of players in right positions even at the district and block level teams was not at all given attention. The net result of this also was fatal because some of PK’s dream sixers turned out to be freaky shots. Well who sabotaged PK’s mighty dream progressive sixers ? The answer is simple because the persons behind the designing and fabricating these sixers had poor knowledge and were a failure. But the major face-saving of PK XI, apart from the above controversy was some mighty and electrifying runs scored in the power sector of Himachal Pradesh, which saw some big MoUs and commissioning of gigantic power projects in the last one year.

Let’s analyse Raja’s XI team. At the age of 65 , the king looks energetic and is in an aggressive mood to play the final. According to the insiders, he had sworn that this time he would not like to play the game of cricket with artificial gadgets like helmets, pads, etc. because he is in a very confident mood of playing well. He would like to chase a total of 68, because that in the number of MLAs in the assembly and he is dead sure and confident of scoring 55.

Some reliable sources say that PK XI can perform well with sufficient time left. The only ray of hope is if a thorough overhaul of the entire PK XI team is done right up to the district and block level teams, the performance is bound to be better.

A ghazal singer of promise

Paramjit, a talented ghazal singer from Shahzada Nand College for Girls, Maqbool Road, Amritsar, has been awarded the first prize for her performance in the TV programme Saa-Re-Gaa-Ma organised by Alfa Punjabi Channel.

Her performance was telecast on July 8, on that channel. Paramjit has already received the second prize in ghazal singing at the Youth Festival held by Guru Nanak Dev University, Amritsar. She had been adjudged as the best singer of the college for the 2000-2001 session. She has participated in many inter-college music contests and won many prizes.

MC turns blind eye to encroachers

Many shopkeepers in Shimla, particularly in the congested Lower and Middle Bazaars, have again resorted to encroachment of public streets by displaying their wares on it while the authorities prefer to look the other way.

These encroachments were removed several times during the past few years, but businessmen with political clout were openly flouting laws.

First it was “tehbazariwallas” and now it is the shopkeepers who have extended their shops up to the roads. The road in the Lower Bazaar is already narrow and these encroachments have added to the mess and made it difficult for people to pass through the bazaar. The photo by Anil Sayal shows encroachments creating congestion.

At least 300 shops had encroached upon roads running through the Lower Bazaar. There are a few shopkeepers who have extended their shops up to the road to get rid of vendors. They claim that these vendors create a lot of uncleanliness. Some of the shopkeepers had allowed these vendors to sit in front of their shops on the municipal street after allegedly charging them rent.

The shopkeepers have spread out their goods in front of their shops. “In spite of a big shop I too have encroached upon to the public land because when everybody is doing it why shouldn’t I do the same?”

There are around 600 tehbazariwallas who have not been registered throughout the city. Lower Bazaar, Ganj Bazaar are over-crowded owing to them.

Contributed by Ravi Bali, Rashmi Talwar and Ranjna Sharma.


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