Thursday, January 17, 2002, Chandigarh, India

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Badal, Mann ready to shed blood, not water
Chandigarh, January 16
The Supreme Court directive to Punjab on Tuesday to complete and commission the Sutlej-Yamuna Link canal (SYL) within one year has opened floodgates of statements further sentimentalising the issue. Water is the lifeline of farmers, may they be of Punjab or Haryana or any other state. Both political and ‘’expert’’ reactions today have been along the predicted lines. So much so even media persons, accredited to the two states, have reacted on the respective government-lines.

Mr Parkash Singh Badal
Mr Simranjeet Singh Mann

Not a drop will be given, asserts Badal
Kurali (Ropar), January 16
Reacting to yesterday’s Supreme Court order asking for a time-bound completion of the SYL canal, the Punjab Chief Minister, Mr Parkash Singh Badal, today said, “We will not implement the court order at any cost. Not a drop of water from Punjab will be given to anyone even if we have to go to jail.”

A handful of families have been ruling Punjab
Chandigarh, January 16
How a few families, which can be counted on the fingertips, control Punjab’s electoral politics and rule the state is an interesting story. The few families, who call the shots in the state’s politics, are closely related to one another though such families have affiliations with different political parties. These can be categorised as big players and small players.

Fatehgarh Sahib



Independents may give tough fight
Mansa, January 16
This 10-year-old district, carved out of Bathinda, has always been politically active, having given rise to many movements in the past. It was not only the cradle and hotbed of the Praja Mandal Movement, but also a stronghold of the Naxalites in the 70s.

Malwa shapes political contours
Bathinda, January 16
All five Assembly segments, including the two reserve ones falling in this district, known as the heartland of the Malwa region, have been witnessing the repeat of the February 1997 poll, with some changes.

NHRC rejects ex-SHO’s plea
Abohar, January 16
The National Human Rights Commission has rejected the plea of a former SHO of the local police Babu Ram Sharma to reconsider orders passed on June 20, 2000, directing him to pay Rs 30,000 as immediate interim relief to Mr Shanti Lal Bajaj a retired JCO, for allegedly “forcing” his wife Saroj Bajaj to commit suicide.

Illegal colonisers, beware!
Jalandhar, January 16
Perturbed over the mushrooming of illegal colonies in six districts, falling in its Jalandhar zone, the Punjab Urban Development Authority has started tightening its noose around the infamous land mafia and illegal colonisers, who have been violating the Punjab Apartment and Property Regulation Act, 1995, and the Property Regulation Act with impunity allegedly with the help of the musclepower.


Candidates step up their campaign
Fatehgarh Sahib, January 16
Mr Didar Singh Bhatti, the SAD (B) candidate from Sirhind Assembly constituency, was weighed against coins in all 11 villages, which he toured today. All candidates of the constituency have intensified their election campaign.

Two BJP leaders quit party
Amritsar, January 16
Disillusioned with the party high command, two senior leaders and municipal councillors, Mr Avinash Jolly and Ms Premwati, today resigned from the primary membership of the BJP and joined hands with Mr Om Parkash Jolly, an Independent MLA and a former Mayor.

Ex-minister quits SAD
Fatehgarh Sahib, January 16
Protesting against the decision of SAD (B) president to allot the party ticket to Mr Didar Singh Bhatti from Sirhind Assembly constituency, Mr R.S. Cheema, a former minister and strong contender for the ticket, resigned from the working committee of the SAD (B) as well as from the primary membership of the party and announced to contest the Assembly election.

Morcha ready to field SAD rebels
Ludhiana, January 16
The Panthic Morcha today extended open invitation to SAD (Badal) rebels, saying that it was prepared to alter the list if better candidates were found from amongst the rebels. The morcha claimed that a number of such candidates had approached the party and were in touch with them.

CPI demands probe into MLAs’ funds
Amritsar, January 16
The CPI has demanded that MLAs’ funds, meant for the development of Assembly constituencies on behalf of the state government, should be accounted for. Mr Amarjit Singh Asal, secretary, district council of the CPI, has raised the issue in a communication with the Chief Election Commissioner, Mr L.M. Lyngdoh, copies of which were released to the press here today.

Congress no threat to SAD: Sukhbir
Kharar, January 16
Mr Sukhbir Singh Badal has claimed that although Mr Amarinder Singh, president PPCC, Mr Ravi Inder Singh, Speaker of former Punjab Vidhan Sabha and Mr Gurcharan Singh Tohra, leader of the Panthic Morcha, have reached a compromise with a view to defeat the Shiromani Akali Dal in the coming Assembly elections, but they will not be able to do so. Not even a single candidate of the Panthic Morcha would be able to win election, he claimed.

NCP list for Punjab on January 20
New Delhi, January 16
The Nationalist Congress Party, which is attempting to strike roots in Punjab, would announce its candidates for the forthcoming elections on January 20.

Seven file nominations on day one
Chandigarh, January 16
Seven candidates filed their nomination papers as the filing of papers for the coming Punjab Vidhan Sabha elections started today, a spokesmen of the Chief Electoral Officer, Punjab, said this evening.

Cong candidate weighed against coins
Dera Bassi, January 16
The Congress candidate from the Banur constituency for the ensuing assembly elections, Ms Seelam Sohi, today opened party election offices at Lalru and Dera Bassi.


Spicmacay to promote ‘Gurbani kirtan’
Amritsar, January 16
To mark the silver jubilee year of Spicmacay, an all India society devoted to the promotion of culture and classical music in its “purest form” will launch its celebrations with ‘gurmat sangeet kirtan ‘darbar’ in the Golden Temple here in collaboration with the SGPC complex.

The scene of collision between a truck and a tractor-trailer near Neelon canal at Doraha. — Photo Paramjeet Singh Happy

Villagers allege doctor’s negligence
Residents stage dharna in front of hospital
Bathinda, January 16
Hundreds of residents of Mahinangal, Bhagi Bander, Jhajjal and Laleana villages staged a dharna in front of a hospital here against the alleged negligence of a doctor which led to the death of Harbhajan Singh of Mahinangal village on January 13.

Punjab’s assurance to envoys of South African countries
Chandigarh, January 16
The Punjab Chief Secretary, Mr N K Arora, today assured a six-member delegation of Ambassadors/ High Commissioners of South African Developing Countries that Punjab was keen to transfer technology in agriculture and industry besides encouraging entrepreneurs to make investments in their countries to resuscitate the economy.

Golden Forest case referred to CBI court
Patiala, January 16
The Golden Forest land scandal case has been referred to the court of the Special Magistrate, Central Bureau of Investigation, here. According to sources, there are three accused in the case — Romila Sinha, Pomilla Syal and Lehmbar Singh. Special Magistrate Jaspinder Singh Heyer adjourned the case to January 30.

Sibbia confirmed as WSC president
Chandigarh, January 16
The appointment of Mr Baldev Singh Sibbia as President of the World Sikh Council was confirmed at a meeting of the Executive Committee of the World Sikh Council held here today under the Presidentship of Mr Baldev Singh Sibbia.

SHSAD men meet Jacob
Chandigarh, January 16
A deputation of the local unit of the Sarb Hind Shiromani Akali Dal led by Mr Joginder Singh Sawhney and Mr M.S. Kohli, president and general secretary of the party, today met the Governor, and submitted a memorandum demanding among others things “due status” to Punjabi language in the UT.

Meat sold despite non-functional abattoir
Batala, January 16
The local Municipal Council’s slaughterhouse has not been functioning for the past 18 years. Earlier, the council used to charge Rs 5 for every animal slaughtered and an average earning used to be between Rs 400 and Rs 500 daily from this source.

Sadhu found dead
Bathinda, January 16
A 60-year-old blind sadhu was found dead in a cloakroom of the local railway station. Volunteers of a local NGO performed the last rites after a post-mortem examination. In another incident, two persons were injured seriously when their scooter hit a cow near Jodhpur Romana village in the district. The injured were identified as Malkit Singh and Basant Singh of Hanumangarh.

Passport office inaugurated
Muktsar, January 16
Mr Babu Lal, Deputy Commissioner, today inaugurated a passport office in the city.


Markfed staff flay govt inaction
Amritsar, January 16
Hundred of field employees, workers, plant workers and ministerial staff of Markfed from all over the state staged a protest rally in front of the district office of Markfed here yesterday.

33 booths ‘sensitive’
Phagwara, January 16
Thirtythree out of 170 polling booths in this Assembly segment have been identified as sensitive, for which additional security arrangements will be made. Returning officer-cum-SDM Amarjit Paul said here today that no candidate had filed nomination papers on the first day today.


SHO arrested for taking bribe
Muktsar, January 16
Gurcharan Singh, SHO city police here, has been put behind bars for taking bribe from Mr Sukhwinder Singh, organiser of a dance group. Mr Vinod Chaudhary, DSP (Vigilance), who headed the team which raided the house of Gurcharan Singh today, said Gurcharan Singh, was demanding a bribe of Rs 5500 from Mr Sukhwinder Singh, a resident of Sarai Naga village, to allow him to organise dance shows on the occasion of Maghi mela.

Arjuna awardee booked under NDPS Act
Bathinda, January 16
The police today registered a case under various Sections of the NDPS Act against an Arjuna awardee in wrestling, Jagdish Singh Bhola, who also won the title of Rustum-e-Hind, for his alleged involvement in the smuggling of narcotics.

Smack worth 40 lakh seized
Amritsar, January 16
The city police claimed to have busted a gang of narcotics smugglers here today. The Islamabad police apprehended two women and seized 400 gm of smack which cost Rs 40 lakh in international market from them. However their accomplices absconded.

Two held with pistols
Amritsar, January 16
The CIA staff of the police today arrested Balwinder Singh of the Islamabad area and Sukhdev Singh of Kot Khalsa and seized two countrymade pistols and several cartridges from them.

Man with fake visa arrested
Amritsar, January 16
The police apprehended Harwinder Singh, resident of Kapur village at Adampur for possessing a fake passport at Rajasansi Airport yesterday. According to a case registered at Rajasansi police station, the accused was to board a plane for the UK.


GND varsity to introduce IT courses
Amritsar, January 16
Keeping in view globalisation and the information technology revolution, Guru Nanak Dev University will introduce postgraduate, graduate and diploma-level courses at the university campus, Amritsar, Regional Campus, Jalandhar and Gurdaspur, and University College, Jalandhar, from the 2002-03 session.


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