Wednesday, October 10, 2001,Chandigarh, India





THE TRIBUNE SPECIALS
50 YEARS OF INDEPENDENCE

TERCENTENARY CELEBRATIONS
H I M A C H A L   P R A D E S H

Tuitions, corporal punishment banned
Shimla, October 9
Private tuitions by government teachers and corporal punishment to students have been banned completely in the education code for Himachal Pradesh which was released here today.

Cabinet Meeting
Cattle insemination to cost more

Shimla, October 9
The Himachal Pradesh Cabinet, at its meeting here today, decided to enhance the artificial insemination fee of cows and buffaloes from Rs 10 to Rs 15 per animal. The hike will not be applicable to the families identified as below poverty line.

‘Govt not serious on women’s Bill’
Dharamsala, October 9
Accusing the Vajpayee government of being non-serious on the issue of giving 33 per cent reservation to women, the All-India Mahila Congress President and Rajya Sabha member, Mrs Chandresh Kumari, today said the issue was simply being kept alive to allure women, who constitute a major chunk of the electorate.

Court summons HP BJP chief
Chamba, October 9
The Senior Sub-Judge, Chamba, has summoned three defendants, including the BJP state President, Mr Jai Kishan Sharma, to appear in person in the court on November 28 in connection with a suit filed by the district president of the BJP, Mr Kewal Krishan Gupta, challenging the validity of a decision of the party high command to announce his resignation.



YOUR TOWN
Chamba
Hamirpur
Dharamsala
Mandi
Shimla
Una


EARLIER STORIES
 

HVC against cement plant in Chopal
Shimla, October 9
The Himachal Vikas Congress (HVC) has opposed the decision of the government to set up a cement plant in Chopal in the interior of Shimla district. Talking to mediapersons, Col D.R. Shandil, MP, vice-president of the Congress, said promoting cement plants and mining in the ecologically fragile hills was not in the interest of the state.

Forum’s plea to minister for probe
Mandi, October 9
The newly constituted Rural Telephone Consumers Forum has urged the Union Communications Minister to hold a high-level inquiry to find out why rural subscribers were not given benefit under the “Gramin Package”, which came into force in 1996. Under this scheme rural subscribers were to be given rent concession and larger number of free calls.

Plan to market apple in summers
Shimla, October 9
To compete with imported apple of Australia and New Zealand during the off season, the HPMC has prepared a strategy to store the Himachal apple at various places to market it during summers.Mr Narendera Bragta, Minister of State for Horticulture, told TNS here today that the local apple would be stored at Oddi and Patlikuhl by applying modern post-harvest technology and precooling.

Minister inspects cleanliness drive
Shimla, October 9
The State Horticulture Minister, Mr Narender Bragta said, here today that a pedestrian way would be constructed between Sanjauli Chowk and Dhalli tunnel for the convenience of the public. He has given a direction to the Municipal Corporation authorities in the connection.

Markanday sees Sukh Ram as next CM
Kangra, October 9
Dr Ram Lal Markanday, Minister of State for PWD and Animal Husbandry, said today Mr Sukh Ram, HVC supremo, would be the next Chief Minister of Himachal Pradesh as the HVC, under pressure from party cadres, had decided to contest all 68 seats during the coming Assembly poll in the state.

Bid to defraud bank, two arrested
Parwanoo, October 9
The police has arrested two youths after they attempted to commit a fraud by encashing a self cheque for Rs 65,000 of a factory in the local branch of the State Bank of India. The youths, who belong to Delhi, were employees of the DTDC Courier Services and produced in a court at Solan yesterday. They were remanded in police custody for five days.

Ministers told to observe austerity 
Shimla, October 9
The Chief Minister, Mr P.K. Dhumal, today asked his ministers to observe economy in view of the bad financial position of the statim Dhumal, who was reviewing the performance of various departments with his ministers here today, said utmost economy should be observed in government spendings by the ministers and the departments under their charge. The instructions of the government in this regard be strictly observed.

Training camp on revenue laws 
Hamirpur, October 9
A two-day training camp for the revenue officials and members of the mahila mandals, yuvak mandals, Panchayati Raj functionaries and mediapersons commenced here today. The aim of the camp is to educate about the new revenue laws and their implementation. Nearly 1,000 persons took part in the camp.

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Tuitions, corporal punishment banned
Tribune News Service

Shimla, October 9
Private tuitions by government teachers and corporal punishment to students have been banned completely in the education code for Himachal Pradesh which was released here today.

The Chief Minister, Mr Prem Kumar Dhumal, released the code in a meeting of the Council of Ministers. The earlier code of education was made in 1985.

The Education Minister, Mr Ishwar Dass Dhiman, Mr Sudripto Roy, Commissioner-cum-Secretary (Education) and Mr O.P. Sharma, Director (Education), were also present on the occasion among others.

The Chief Minister stressed upon the implementation of this new code in letter and spirit to bring qualitative improvement in education.

The new education code provides elaborate guidelines for Principals and headmasters for management of educational institutions. To bring uniformity in the working of all schools in the state, teaching norms have been specified in this code. This includes minimum workload for teachers, subject wise distribution of periods per week, ideal number of students per section, vacation schedule, etc.

Corporal punishment and private tuitions by government teachers have also been banned. Promotion of moral education has also been incorporated in the new education code.

To ensure participation of people in allround development of schools the new education code envisages setting up of parents-teachers associations.

To popularise scholarship scheme, a complete detail of scholarships being given by the government has been given in the code along with application form.

The Chief Minister expressed confidence that this would go a long way in achieving the goal of providing quality education in the state.

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Cabinet Meeting
Cattle insemination to cost more
Tribune News Service

Shimla, October 9
The Himachal Pradesh Cabinet, at its meeting here today, decided to enhance the artificial insemination fee of cows and buffaloes from Rs 10 to Rs 15 per animal. The hike will not be applicable to the families identified as below poverty line.

The Chief Minister, Mr Prem Kumar Dhumal, presided over the meeting.

The Cabinet gave approval for filling up 269 posts which are lying vacant in the Social and Women Welfare Department in the pay scale of Rs 5000-8100 from the scheme for selection of Balsevikas and anganwari workers by 90 per cent direct recruitment and also gave one-time relaxation for appointment to such anganwari workers who are above 45 years and below 50 years and fulfil the eligibility criteria i.e. the educational and service criteria.

The Cabinet approved the setting up an institution of higher learning of the level of the university by the World Institution Building Programme. Such an institution will be set up after signing an agreement between the WIBP and the state government, which also contemplates passing of suitable legislation in this regard. The institution will be the first of its kind in northern India and it is proposed to run graduate, postgraduate and doctoral courses on non-formal subjects such as sustainable development, human rights, disaster mitigation and ecology and environment, etc, hitherto not covered under regular studies but are relevant and typical as an emerging area of study in the national and global scenario.

The Cabinet approved that the old Vivekanand Medical Care Education Research Trust, Holta, Palampur, be dissolved and it was further approved that the money received by the old trust by way of public donations and interest accrued thereupon be transferred to the new Vivekanand Trust.

The Cabinet approved the availing of external assistance through the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) for the upgradation of the first phase and the preparation of the second phase project reports in respect of the Kashang and Kerang projects to be executed by the Himachal Pradesh State Electricity Board (175 MW). The proposal has been received from the Canadian High Commission regarding this, which was approved by the Cabinet today.

The Union Power Minister signed agreement with Canadian agencies recently enabling the Export Development Corporation (EDC) of Canada to open letter of credit of US $ 75 million with the Power Finance Corporation (PFC) of India for power development in India using the latest Canadian technology, goods and services. As per the communication of July 10, 2000, from the Canadian High Commission to the Chairman, HPSEB, this letter of credit can be accessed to develop suitable hydroelectric projects in Himachal Pradesh, such as the Kashang project subject to the approval of the PFC and the EDC.

One of the prerequisites for accessing this loan is that a Canadian company should undertake the study of the project and submit an application to the Canadian International Development Agency for availing the assistance for carrying out this study.

The Cabinet also decided to amend, Section 74 of the Indian Forest Act to grant indemnity to the forest staff from prosecution for performing bona fide duties on the pattern of the police staff.

The Cabinet gave approval for the pay scale of Rs 26,000 (fixed per month) for the post of Chairman of the Himachal Pradesh Electricity Commission.

The Cabinet gave approval for relaxation of parking floor in case of Nalagarh Tehsil Cooperative Marketing Consumers Union Ltd.

The Cabinet also gave approval for renaming government educational institutions after Kargil martyrs.

These institutions are Government High School, Chachian, Kangra district, named as Shaheed Rakesh Kumar Government High School, Chachian, Government Primary School, Dhian, Solan district, named as Shaheed Amar Pal Government Primary School, Dhian, and Government Senior Secondary School, Urni, Kinnaur district, named as Shaheed Surender Pal Government Senior Secondary School, Urni.

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‘Govt not serious on women’s Bill’
Tribune News Service

Dharamsala, October 9
Accusing the Vajpayee government of being non-serious on the issue of giving 33 per cent reservation to women, the All-India Mahila Congress President and Rajya Sabha member, Mrs Chandresh Kumari, today said the issue was simply being kept alive to allure women, who constitute a major chunk of the electorate.

Addressing a press conference here she said she failed to understand that a Bill, which had the support of the four major political parties , including the Congress, the BJP, the Telgu Desham and the CPM, could not be passed, “The very fact that the government intends to introduce the Bill in the House on the closing days of the Parliament, shows lack of commitment in providing reservation to the women,” she stated.

Mrs Chandresh Kumari, said she did not see any problem in the Bill being passed as it had the support of parties, which constitute two-thirds strength of the Parliament. “Instead of the Bill being sent directly to the select committee, there should have been a debate on the matter so that the amendments could have been made after getting the opinion of various political parties,” she observed. She added that seeing all this she had doubts about the sincerity of the government on providing reservation to women.

She further revealed that the Mahila Congress on its part had launched a five point programme in 14 states of the country to create awareness among the women about their rights.

Regarding the controversy over her staking claim for the Assembly ticket from Dharamsala she clarified that every party worker had the right to stake claim, as the final decision of ticket allotment lay with the party high command. “I made up mind to contest from the Dharamsala Assembly segment and being a party member for the last 30 years, it is my right to put up my claim,” she clarified.

She went on to add that the power to allot ticket for the elections was with high command and it was futile exercise to create a different impression. “It is the CLP leader and the PCC chief, who on the basis of the recommendations sent to the AICC by the state and the district bodies, will decide on the party candidates,” she observed.

While admitting that there could be difference of opinion within the party, she stated that she did not belong to any faction, and support both the CLP leader, Mr Virbhadra Singh and the HPCC chief, Mrs Vidya Stokes, in the larger interest of the party. She denied that she was not attending the public meetings of Mrs Stokes adding that she could ensure her presence there only if she was informed about it, beforehand.

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Court summons HP BJP chief
Our Correspondent

Chamba, October 9
The Senior Sub-Judge, Chamba, has summoned three defendants, including the BJP state President, Mr Jai Kishan Sharma, to appear in person in the court on November 28 in connection with a suit filed by the district president of the BJP, Mr Kewal Krishan Gupta, challenging the validity of a decision of the party high command to announce his resignation.

The two other respondents are the state organising secretary of the party, Mr Ram Swarup Sharma, and the newly appointed district president, Mr Tulsi Ram.

Mr Gupta in his suit has appealed to the court to issue orders for his continuing on the post of district president of the party and urged to defer the ban on the appointment imposed by the respondents.

Mr Gupta also urged the court to impose restriction on the functioning of Mr Tulsi Ram as district BJP president.

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HVC against cement plant in Chopal
Tribune News Service

Shimla, October 9
The Himachal Vikas Congress (HVC) has opposed the decision of the government to set up a cement plant in Chopal in the interior of Shimla district.

Talking to mediapersons, Col D.R. Shandil, MP, vice-president of the Congress, said promoting cement plants and mining in the ecologically fragile hills was not in the interest of the state. It triggered off soil erosion and also caused environment pollution. The government should instead concentrate on the development of tourism and take concrete steps to open interior areas.

There was a vast scope for promoting cultural-religious tourism in the state dotted with historic temples, forts and other monuments. The tourism industry generated maximum employment, he said.

There was no need to set up five star hotels or big tourism complexes. The effort should be to provide decent boarding and lodging facilities to tourists at reasonable rates, he said.

He said he had urged the Union Agriculture Ministry to sanction an integrated watershed development project for the state to solve the problem of soil erosion and promote agriculture and allied activities. He had also taken up the case of Kala Amb to Saketi road via Vikram Bag, Khajurna, Rakhni and Uttam for inclusion in the Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadan Yozna.

He said the schemes under the MP’s local area development fund were not being properly and speedily executed due to lack of coordination among different departments and the district administration.

The HVC was preparing to contest all seats in the next Assembly election though it had left the option for alliance with any party open, he said.

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Forum’s plea to minister for probe
Our Correspondent

Mandi, October 9
The newly constituted Rural Telephone Consumers Forum has urged the Union Communications Minister to hold a high-level inquiry to find out why rural subscribers were not given benefit under the “Gramin Package”, which came into force in 1996. Under this scheme rural subscribers were to be given rent concession and larger number of free calls.

In a message faxed to the minister, convener of the forum, Mr D.D. Thakur, has alleged that the rural subscribers were being charged on a par with the urban subscribers where the exchanges were located in urban areas while the subscribers were living in rural areas.

It has also been alleged that Department of Telecommunications had kept it as a secret that the probe could avail of the concession by filling a prescribed form attested by the revenue authority or the respective panchayat. Such forms are available at the office of the General Manager, BSNL, but the people have not been informed about it.

The Chief General Manager, BSNL, Mr N.S. Gill, speaking to this correspondent on the telephone said he believed that the concessions under the Gramin Package were being given to the subscribers. He said he would, however, find out the facts and issue necessary directions to the General Manager, Mandi. Asked about the payment of the arrears due to the subscribers for the past six years since the package had come into force, he said he could not say anything before examining all aspects. “Many matters are resolved at the Telephone Adalats also”, he said. The General Manager, BSNL local circle, Mr Pradip Kumar, said he was going into the matter thoroughly and would disclose all facts to newspersons at a press conference.

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Plan to market apple in summers
Tribune News Service

Shimla, October 9
To compete with imported apple of Australia and New Zealand during the off season, the HPMC has prepared a strategy to store the Himachal apple at various places to market it during summers.

Mr Narendera Bragta, Minister of State for Horticulture, told TNS here today that the local apple would be stored at Oddi and Patlikuhl by applying modern post-harvest technology and precooling.

He said at lease 3,190 cases of apple had been stored so far and these would be marketed next year in March and April during off season so that better quality apple were available to the consumers. Australia and other countries have started sending their apple to India during these months when the local fruit goes off the shelf.

Mr Bragta said the HPMC had earned a profit of Rs 1.66 crore after registering the highest ever turnover of Rs 51 crore this year and has also been selected for the prestigious “Europe Award for Quality” for its apple and other fruit products.

The HPMC will be presented the award in Paris on October 22. The HPMC has been selected for the award after a close competition between 115 participants from various countries.

He said the award had been conferred for the export of apple juice concentrate and other products to different countries.

Mr Bragta said during the past two years the corporation was also awarded the “Udyog Rattan Award” and “Excellence Award” by the Institute of Economic Studies during 2000-01.

At least 780 tonnes of apple juice concentrate was exported to Germany, the USA and Ghana. Besides 2 tonnes of cider vinegar was exported to Ghana for the first time.

He said the apple juice of the HPMC was now being served in the flights of Indian Airlines.

The wine being manufactured by the HPMC has found a good market in Kerala, he claimed.

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Minister inspects cleanliness drive
Our Correspondent

Shimla, October 9
The State Horticulture Minister, Mr Narender Bragta said, here today that a pedestrian way would be constructed between Sanjauli Chowk and Dhalli tunnel for the convenience of the public. He has given a direction to the Municipal Corporation authorities in the connection.

Mr Bragta was inspecting the “Shimla cleanliness campaign” and other roads metalling works in Sanjauli. He was accompanied by workers of the BJP Yuva Morcha, officials of the Nagar Nigam and local people.

He said the cleanliness campaign had started the process to restore grandeur of the historical Shimla town. During this week-long campaign, Mr Bragta inspected cleanliness in streets of the town. He directed the Municipal Corporation and IPH officials to remove the debris of landslides on roads.

He also inspected the campaign between Scandal Point and Rivoli to Ruldu Bhatta and at Jakhu ward. He appealed to the local people to gather the wastes in or around their houses in a bag and place it in dumpers of the Municipal Corporation. He sought cooperation of every residents to keep the town clean.

Mr Bragta hoped that the campaign would make the people aware about cleanliness. 

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Markanday sees Sukh Ram as next CM
Our Correspondent

Kangra, October 9
Dr Ram Lal Markanday, Minister of State for PWD and Animal Husbandry, said today Mr Sukh Ram, HVC supremo, would be the next Chief Minister of Himachal Pradesh as the HVC, under pressure from party cadres, had decided to contest all 68 seats during the coming Assembly poll in the state.

Dr Markanday was addressing mediapersons at the Bajreshwari temple here today on his first visit to the temple after his marriage.

He expressed concern over the Chief Minister, Mr P.K. Dhumal, not addressing to their demand of holding a meeting of the leadership of both alliance partners before taking a policy matter decision. Asked about the setting up of a Rs 600 crore cement plant in Chamba district, Dr Markanday said the HVC was against the setting up of cement plants in the state.

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Bid to defraud bank, two arrested
Our Correspondent

Parwanoo, October 9
The police has arrested two youths after they attempted to commit a fraud by encashing a self cheque for Rs 65,000 of a factory in the local branch of the State Bank of India.

The youths, who belong to Delhi, were employees of the DTDC Courier Services and produced in a court at Solan yesterday. They were remanded in police custody for five days.

According to the police, an envelope containing a self cheque for Rs 65,000 along with other papers was handed over by the owner of HIM Techno Company to the DTDC Courier Services at Delhi, to be delivered at Parwanoo. Sushil Kumar and Sushant knew that there was a cheque in the envelope. They opened the envelope and took out the cheque. Both the youths then took a night bus from Delhi to Parwanoo and reached here in the morning.

Meanwhile, the envelope was also delivered to the factory manager on the same day and the manager found out that the cheque was missing from the envelope. He immediately informed his head office at Delhi and also to the State Bank of India at Parwanoo.

At about 10.00 a.m., both the youths went to the bank and presented the cheque. The bank manager asked them to wait for the payment and informed the factory manager. The factory manager immediately informed the local police. The police arrived at the bank and arrested both the youths while encashing the cheque and registered a case under Sections 420, 467, 468, 120.

Both the youths told the police during interrogation that they knew that there was a self cheque in the envelope because every month a self cheque was being sent by the owner of the factory to Parwanoo for the distribution of the salaries of the employees through their courier services.

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Ministers told to observe austerity 
Tribune News Service

Shimla, October 9
The Chief Minister, Mr P.K. Dhumal, today asked his ministers to observe economy in view of the bad financial position of the state.

Mr Dhumal, who was reviewing the performance of various departments with his ministers here today, said utmost economy should be observed in government spendings by the ministers and the departments under their charge. The instructions of the government in this regard be strictly observed.

It is being said the functioning of the ministers was being evaluated by Mr Dhumal.

The Chief Minister said, soon after taking over, the government adopted its poll manifesto as its policy document and also set up a committee under the chairmanship of a senior minister to look into the implementation and progress of the decisions taken by the government with regard to the promises made to people on the eve of last Vidhan Sabha election.

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Training camp on revenue laws 
Our Correspondent

Hamirpur, October 9
A two-day training camp for the revenue officials and members of the mahila mandals, yuvak mandals, Panchayati Raj functionaries and mediapersons commenced here today. The aim of the camp is to educate about the new revenue laws and their implementation. Nearly 1,000 persons took part in the camp.

While addressing the participants, Mr H.S. Atwal, one of the members of the high-powered committee that formulated the new revenue laws, said the new legislation would be helpful for the farming community which constituted 90 per cent of the total population of the state. The revenue process has been given transparency with the implementation of these laws he added.

Mr Atwal stated that all revenue records in the state were being computerised. He described kisan passbook as historical document and added that these would be beneficial for the farmers in dealing with their daily requirements.

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Married woman gangraped
Our Correspondent

Nurpur, October 9
A married woman of Sadwan village was allegedly gangraped on October 6 by three persons who took her to a deserted place on the pretext of getting her property dispute solved by the gram panchayat and committed the crime.

The case was registered yesterday. The accused has been identified as Sanju, Partap and Surjeet.

No arrest has so far been made.

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Three years’ RI for murder
Our Correspondent

Una, October 9
Jiya Lal, resident of Basdehra village of Una district, was convicted yesterday for causing the death of Shri Kishan Chand and sentenced to three years’ rigorous imprisonment and fined Rs 2000. In a land dispute, an altercation had taken place between Jiya Lal and Kishan Chand following which the accused had struck Kishan’s head against a wall. 

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Procession against sacrilege
 Tribune News Service

Paonta Sahib, October 9
A procession was jointly taken out by the Himachal State Akali Dal, Sikh Social Welfare Society and Sukhmani Sahib Society here today in protest against the various incidents of sacrilege in Punjab.

The procession, led by Mr Rattan Singh, MLA; started from Badri Nagar and terminated at the historic Gurdwara Paonta Sahib after passing through various localities and bazars of the town. The entire bazar remained closed today.

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