Monday, December 24, 2001, Chandigarh, India

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Cong rallies ‘danger signals’ for SAD
Dirba (Sangrur), December 23
Pointing towards the gathering of thousands at the Congress rally here today, Mrs Rajinder Kaur Bhattal, former Punjab Chief Minister and MLA from Lehragaga, said such type of massive Congress rallies had forced the Akali leaders, including Punjab Ministers, to spend sleepless nights as these rallies were a “danger signal” for them in the ensuing Punjab Assembly elections.

Will Patiala oblige Amarinder?
Patiala, December 23
After Gurcharan Singh Tohra and Capt Kanwaljit Singh, Patiala district seems to be going “Captain” Amarinder Singh way. Patiala has been the nucleus of power after the Muktsar and Faridkot area represented by the Badal family during the past nearly five years of Akali rule.

BSF, Army strive to reassure border villagers
Abohar, December 23
A cheerful-looking BSF Commandant S.S. Chahar, coming back after attending the monthly flag meeting with the Wing Commander and other officers of the Pakistan Rangers on the Pakistan side near Sadiqi post yesterday, did not give the impression that there was any tension on the international border. 

Reforms led to officer’s transfer
Ropar, December 23
Try to reform and get transferred. This seems to be true at least in the case of the local district administration, from the way the Additional Deputy Commissioner General, Mr Krishan Kumar, was transferred just four months after he was posted here.

Fatehgarh Sahib



Akalis seek another term for Badal
Sunam, December 23
The Political Affairs Committee of the Shiromani Akali Dal has not yet finalised the names of candidates for the ensuing Punjab Assembly elections, but Mr Parminder Singh Dhindsa, MLA from Sunam, and son of Mr Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa, Union Minister for Chemicals and Fertilisers, was yesterday projected as the SAD candidate from this Assembly constituency at an election rally organised by the party at the local new grain market.

Cong leaders slam govt for corruption
Samrai (Jalandhar), December 23
The Punjab Congress today alleged that the state was lagging behind in the field of development due to the “wrong” policies being pursued by the ruling SAD-BJP combine government.

MCPI to contest seven seats
Ludhiana, December 23
The Marxist Communist Party of India, a constituent of the Punjab Lok Morcha, will contest seven Assembly seats in the ensuing elections while it would strongly oppose both Congress and SAD-BJP candidates on other seats and work for the victory of the Left democratic and other deserving candidates, including those fielded by the morcha.

Intense lobbying for Sangrur Cong ticket
Chandigarh, December 23
Intense lobbying has started among various Congress candidates to secure the party ticket for the Sangrur assembly constituency which is otherwise known as an Akali stronghold.

CLP leader lashes out at Kanshi Ram
Ludhiana, December 23
The leader of the Congress Legislative Party in the Punjab Assembly Chaudhary Jagjit Singh, today lashed out at the Bahujan Samaj Party supremo, Mr Kanshi Ram, claiming that he was “behaving like a dictator and treated his party workers as nothing more than bonded labourers”.

Cong ‘ignored’ border belt development
Chandigarh, December 23
The Chief Minister, Mr Parkash Singh Badal today addressed a gathering of SAD-BJP workers from Amritsar district at his residence under the ‘‘sangat darshan programme’’.

BJP plan to meet Badal ends in fiasco
Amritsar, December 23
The plans for show of strength and solidarity by the ruling Akali-BJP combine today ended in a “fiasco” when a part of the jatha scheduled to reach Chandigarh was left here. 

Political activity picks up in Mansa
Mansa, December 23
In view of the forthcoming elections to the Punjab Vidhan Sabha, political activities have been gaining momentum and aspirants for the party ticket are leaving nothing to chance to get nominated.

Doshi made Cong SC/ST cell gen secy
Bathinda, December 23
Mr Parkash Doshi, a resident of Gidderbaha in Muktsar district has been appointed the general secretary of the SC/ST cell of the Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee.


Malta tragedy: panel may approach Lokpal
Phagwara, December 23
The Malta Boat Tragedy Probe Mission may approach Punjab Lokpal in case the Chief Minister, Mr Parkash Singh Badal, the SGPC President, Mr Kirpal Singh Badungar, and the Akal Takht Jathedar, Giani Joginder Singh Vedanti continued to keep a studied silence over the “pigeons episode” in which two ruling Akali Dal Ministers, Mr Sohan Singh Thandal and Mr Sujan Singh and an SGPC member, Mr Tarlochan Singh Dopalpuri, had allegedly left behind some persons in Canada on the occasion of Baisakhi.

Lack of enthusiasm mars Jor Mela
Fatehgarh Sahib, December 23
Though just a day is left for the commencement of the Shaheedi Jor Mela, a major annual event of the state, yet a lack of enthusiasm prevails among the stall owners, and organisers of amusement games due to commercialisation of the mela and the exorbitant rates being charged by the private contractor, who has taken the land from the SGPC at very high rates.

Shatabdi to halt at Sirhind
Ludhiana, December 23
Shatabdi running between Delhi and Amritsar will stop at Sirhind from December 25. This was disclosed here today by the senior Akali leader and Rajya Sabha member Gurcharan Singh Tohra. 

Astrologers rule out war
Jalandhar, December 23
Heightened tension between India and Pakistan in the wake of the December 13 attack on parliament House is not likely to result in a full-scale war, even as the two countries will never have friendly ties.

Army harassing farmers: Mann
Jalandhar, December 23
Opposing war between India and Pakistan, the Shiromani Akali Dal (Amritsar), today alleged that Sikh farmers were being forced to dig up bunkers in the border areas by the Army personnel.

Centre earmarks 54,000 cr for roads
Jalandhar, December 23
The Central Government has earmarked Rs 54,000 crore in the 10th Plan for the construction and maintenance of the national and state highways and rural link roads.

Scholars: make Akal Takht autonomous
Amritsar, December 23
Sikh scholars today opined that Akal Takht should be made an autonomous body and it should not work under the direct control of the SGPC. In a seminar organised here today, the Sikh scholars opined that Akal Takht should not be used by any party for political ends.

Beating up of SGPC men to be probed
Kapurthala, December 23
The Punjab Government has deputed Mr Vivek Aggarwal, Deputy Commissioner, to conduct an inquiry into the beating up of six employees of the SGPC, including the Manager of Gurdwara Ber Sahib, allegedly by the police on Friday over the possession of a piece of land by the PUDA authorities for the construction in front of a chowk of the gurdwara.

Drive on AIDS awareness
Bathinda, December 23
The District AIDS Control Organisation has launched a campaign to create awareness among youths about the AIDS. The campaign will focus on AIDS and the threat of Hepatitis-B. 

Amanjit elected Bar chief
Dhuri, December 23
Mr Amanjit Singh was elected president of the Dhuri Bar Association here last evening by defeating Mr Ram Saran Dass Jindal by a margin of five votes.

Rs 12 lakh sanctioned for judicial complex
Bathinda, December 23
Ms Gurcharan Kaur, MP, has announced a grant of Rs 5 lakh for the improvement of a Bar room and its surroundings while Mr Mohan Lal Garg, Chairman, Improvement Trust, Bathinda, agreed to sanction Rs 7 lakh for the construction of a parking area for the cars in the local judicial complex.


BKU alleges supply of substandard fertiliser
Moga, December 23
The general secretary and the press secretary of the state unit of the Bharatiya Kisan Union, Mr Manjit Singh Kadian and Mr Bhupinder Singh Mavesari respectively yesterday urged the state government to conduct an inquiry into the substandard DAP fertiliser and underweight bags supplied through cooperative societies to farmers in the state.


DC orders scrutiny of Bholath voters
Kapurthala, December 23
Mr Vivek Aggarwal, Deputy Commissioner-cum-District Electoral Officer, has ordered the scrutiny of 6,900 new voters of the Bholath Assembly constituency in this district. The General Assistant to the Deputy Commissioner has been deputed for the task.

Committee to examine staff demands
Chandigarh, December 23
A deputation of the Punjab State Services Federation, a representative body of Punjab Government employees, led by Mr Charanjit Singh Walia, former MP, called on Mr Parkash Singh Badal, Chief Minister, and discussed the demands of the employees.


Student dies in police custody
Tarn Taran, December 23
Pardeep Singh, a Class X student and resident of Gandiwind Dhattal village, died allegedly in police custody last night. A case under Section 302 of the IPC has been registered against the in-charge of the Jamarai police post, ASI Harbhajan Singh, in this regard.

Man kills 3 of family, self
Ludhiana, December 23
A man hacked to death three members of his family before committing suicide in Partap Singh Wallah village near Haibowal here today. It’s suspected that acute poverty faced by the family could have led him to take this step.


Mohali college wins youth fest trophy
Ropar, December 23
Government College SAS Nagar with 96 points, has won the overall trophy in the three-day Zonal Youth Festival of Punjabi University, Patiala, held at Government College, Ropar.

Golden jubilee of school celebrated
Hoshiarpur, December 23
The local Vidya Mandir Model School celebrated its golden jubilee today. It is perhaps the first school to celebrate its golden jubilee in the lifetime of its founder-Principal, Ms Jagtawali Sood, who had started the school in 1951 with an objective to impart education to girls.

End deadlock, teachers urge CM
Chandigarh, December 23
On the fourth day of the chain fast by the Punjab and Chandigarh College Teachers Union, the President of the Federation of Principals, Mr S.S. Sodhi, joined the protesters outside the office of DPI (Punjab), here today.

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