Saturday, November 30, 2002, Chandigarh, India


P U N J A B    S T O R I E S



Cops tortured Gurdev, alleges Badal
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, November 29
The SAD chief and former Punjab Chief Minister, Mr Parkash Singh Badal, today said the next course of action after the ‘successful’ jail bharo stir would be decided at the PAC meeting to be held soon. He also said the Congress had started a wrong trend by empowering the state Vigilance Bureau to target senior party leaders and not referring the cases to a commission headed by a sitting High Court judge.

He was in the city this noon to call on former Agriculture Minister and MLA Gurdev Singh Badal arrested by the Vigilance Bureau for amassing property beyond his known sources of income. He was remanded to judicial custody by a local court till December 2.

Talking to TNS, Mr Badal said Capt Amarinder Singh had turned the issue of graft into a personal vendetta against the Akalis and was “orchestrating” the whole operation himself. “Leaders are being arrested on cooked-up charges with the aim of creating a sense of anxiety among the rank and file of the party”, he alleged.

He said the senior leader was tortured in police custody. He showed me from where his beard was pulled. This is the treatment meted out to an old man: He was not even allowed to take medicine by a government that denies indulging in a witch-hunt, he pointed out.

While the Opposition MLAs were expected to declare their assets, the Congress had conveniently declared that their legislators would do the same before a committee chaired by Mr Manmohan Singh, he pointed out with sarcasm.

Terming the recent statements of the Chief Minister were in “bad taste”, he said: “If he claims that he will muzzle the Akalis, he forgets that we too know how to make him dance like a puppet.” He alleged that the people were fed up with the Congress rule since no development had taken place so far.


Amarinder failed to keep word, says Badal
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 29
SAD President Parkash Singh Badal said in a statement today that Chief Minister Amarinder Singh’s mock heroics on honesty and transparency in public life had been given an unceremonious burial by his statement on non-declaration of assets by the Congress ministers and legislators.

“We always knew that the so-called anti-corruption drive was nothing more than vendetta against his political rivals and a camouflage for corruption within his own government and party. Now a confirmation of that has come straight from the Chief Minister’s mouth. This should serve as an eye-opener to those who criticised the SAD for its massive agitation on Wednesday, calling it an attempt to divert attention from the issue of corruption. Go and ask the Chief Minister, who is running from truth now? says Mr Badal in the statement.

The SAD leader said that the Chief Minister’s statement was conclusive proof that two laws operated in Punjab — one for the privileged ruling elite and other for the SAD and its allies. It was a new system of making mockery of the Indian Constitution by openly declaring that different yardsticks would apply to the accused depending on which political party they belonged to.

Mr Badal said a pledge had been made before the Assembly elections by Capt Amarinder Singh that Congress MLAs, MPs, ministers and other holding government positions would declare their assets. “He backed out of the promise for free power and irrigation water to farmers. He gave up his commitment to continue the shagun scheme and, in fact, to double its amount and triple the old age pension. He backed out of his commitment to the Dalits on enhancing free power to them and, in fact, went a step ahead and withdrew it altogether. The same applied to octroi.The employees in the state felt cheated on the 4-9-14 promotion scheme promised by the Congress in its manifesto.” It would be a surprise if the Chief Minister could name even one item on his party’s manifesto on which he had not gone back, Mr Badal added.


Badal’s OSD joins probe
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 29
Adding a twist to the controversy, former Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal’s Officer-on-Special-Duty Hardeep Singh on Friday asserted that he had joined investigations in a case registered against him, contrary to the state’s claim.

In an affidavit, Hardeep Singh stated that he appeared before the Superintendent of Police concerned on November 23 from 10.30 am to 4.30 pm in compliance with the Court directions. Another affidavit of Hardeep Singh’s counsel was also submitted, along with a letter countersigned by the SP regarding the joining of investigations by the former OSD.

Hardeep Singh’s assertion assumes significance as the state had earlier claimed that the former OSD had failed to join the investigations in the case. The matter will now be taken up by Ms Justice Kiran Anand Lall on December 12.

It may be recalled that Hardeep Singh had earlier accused the Congress government of adopting a revengeful attitude towards political opponents. He had asserted that the Chief Minister had openly declared that Badal and his men would be taught a lesson and as such he was being targeted. His counsel had added that a false and a baseless case had been registered against the petitioner by the Punjab Vigilance Bureau and his house was raided even though nothing incriminating was recovered.


MP urges SAD to give up confrontation
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, November 29
Mr Ashwani Kumar, Congress MP from Punjab, has appealed the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) to give up the path of confrontation with the Congress government and join hands on the issues concerning the state.

Talking to TNS here, Mr Ashwani Kumar said now that the SAD had lodged its protest against the perceived wrong policies of the state government, the party should extend cooperation on common critical issues which do not admit of partisan approach.

Mr Kumar said there were compelling needs of the state which could no longer be postponed and demanded immediate attention. He said ensuring quality education, combating drug addiction and a long-term industrial policy that would encourage investment in infrastructure were among the issues of common concern.

An all-round economic development is possible in an atmosphere free of strife and bitterness, he said, pointing out that the recent meeting of the Punjab Chief Minister, Capt Amarinder Singh, with the MPs of the state on the pending issues with the Centre was a Congress initiative to ensure collaborative politics. The MPs of SAD did not attend the meeting.

Referring to BJP’s criticism of the Congress president, Ms Sonia Gandhi’s, visit to Oxford University for a lecture, Mr Kumar said it had brought the level of discourse to a new low which was damaging traditions of democratic politics. The BJP’s remarks, he said, were a reflection of its frustration with the increasing acceptability of Ms Gandhi’s political leadership.


Tohra lashes out at Central Government
Our Correspondent

Fatehgarh Sahib, November 29
Jathedar G.S.Tohra, president, SHSAD, while talking to Ludhiana Tribune here today alleged that Central Governments had always gaven a step-motherly treatment with the state and fleeced the people in one or the other manner. Mr. Atal Behari Vajpayee is playing a very dangerous game and sowing the seeds of poison by raising the issue of interlinking the rivers of the nation to tackle the problem of drought and inter-state disputes over water.

He ridiculed the stand taken by the state government as well as by SAD president Parkash Singh Badal on this issue and said both the Congress and now the BJP Central Government had never done justice with the state.

He said every state has its own natural resources and Punjab has water as natural resources and it is unjustified to compel the state to share its resources with other states and, moreover, agriculture, and water are state subjects.

He appreciated the move of Capt Amarinder Singh for calling the meeting of all the MPs of the state and giving them the right information about the case presented by the state before the Union Government. He said it was for the first time that any Chief Minister has called all the MPs irrespective of their party affiliation for the cause of the state.

Reacting to the Jail Bharo Andolan of the SAD, he termed it as a two-hour drama enacted by Badal and Capt Amarinder Singh jointly. He said one was claiming it as a great success and the other as a big flop. He said neither it was an andolan nor the farmers came forward for protest, it was mere a formal gathering of few workers.

Later, Jathedar Tohra presided over the annual prize distribution function of the local BZSFS Senior Secondary School. In his address, he urged the students, teachers as well as parents to jointly make all efforts to provide moral values, spiritual as well as advanced studies to the students as they were the builders of the nation.

He cautioned the students from the growing drug abuse in society. Mr Kirpal Singh Libra, manager of the school, also addressed, the gathering. Jathedar Tohra also presided over the seminar being organised by Baba Banda Singh Bahadur Engineering College.


Right to motherhood’ seeker’s husband already on parole
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, November 29
In the case of Ms Kalpana Daniel, who had moved the Punjab State Human Rights Commission, seeking cohabitation with her imprisoned husband as her Constitutional ‘right to motherhood’, it has been revealed that the person, Dr Sunil Daniel was already on parole two times each of 28 days and lived with his wife.

He was on first parole with his wife, just six months ago. At present also he is on parole second time, with his wife till December 4. The Punjab State Human Rights Commission has been deliberating her ‘rare’ case called a debate on the issue, while the couple is living together.

Ms Daniel married the man a year ago while he (Sunil) was in jail for the murder of his first wife, thus in full knowledge that she will face problem of cohabitation. Dr Sunil Daniel was working with the Christian Medical College and Hospital (CMCH), when he had murdered his first wife and was convicted a few years ago.

Ms Kalpana Daniel, who works in the clinic of her sister in Yamunanager. Hers is the first case of its kind and has thrown up constitutional questions.

The PHRC called her plea as “quite interesting and having relevance on basic human rights”. The Commission directed the Additional Director General of Police (Prisons) Punjab to study the matter from all possible angles, vis-a-vis the Jail Manual.

It also observed that the Manual provides for permission to prisoners to go on parole for harvesting or sowing purposes or for some domestic work for urban prisoners. It will see if a prisoner can be allowed parole for cohabitation.

Sources in the central jail there, where Dr Sunil Daniel is undergoing jail term informed that they had nothing against the prisoner but the basis of the plea was wrong as the inmate already was living with his wife. If allowed, this can cause chaos and set a wrong precedent.

All prisoners, male or female will seek parole on this plea and then the children would seek right of living with parents.

Jail Superintendent G.S. Sidhu confirmed the man in question was on parole for 28 days, six months ago and was again on parole. He had mentioned domestic work for parole. He is living with his wife, he said.


SHO booked in bribery case
Tribune News Service

Ferozepore, November 29
The Vigilance Bureau has booked SHO, Dharamkot, under the Prevention of Corruption Act and seized among other things, Rs 1.34 lakh from his house. The bureau has also asked the local police to register three separate cases against the SHO under the NDPS Act, the Excise Act and Section 342, IPC, following seizures from his house. The SHO is missing.

Mrs Anita Punj, SP, Vigilance Bureau, Ferozepore Range, told TNS here this evening that Mr Mangat Singh, SHO, Dharamkot, illegally confined two persons namely Jagtar Singh and Pargat Singh of Kot Sadar Khan village in the lock-up for the past few days and was demanding Rs 15,000 for their release.

He was paid Rs 5,000 and it was promised that the remaining amount would be paid in two day’s time. However, he did not release the two persons even after the assurance of the local panchayat. The Sarpanch of the Kot Sadar Khan village, Mr Nishan Singh, and his friend, Mr Vijay Kumar, of Fatehgarh Panchtoor village approached Mrs Punj and narrated the whole story.

A team of the Vigilance Bureau, led by Mr Surjit Singh Khosa, DSP, Vigilance Bureau, went along with the complainants. The SHO called the Sarpanch and his friend to his house and took Rs 10,000 from them. However, he grew suspicious and immediately handed over the money to his servant Satpal and fled. The bureau arrested Satpal on the spot and recovered the money from him.

Meanwhile, the Vigilance team searched the SHO’s house and seized Rs 1,34,010, 6 kg of poppy husk and a crate of whiskey. Jagtar Singh and Pargat Singh were also found to be illegally confined in the lock-up by the SHO.

The SP said a case under Section 13 (2) of the Prevention of Corruption Act had been registered against the SHO and Satpal at Ferozepore police station of the Vigilance Bureau.


2 held in question paper leakage case
Tribune Reporters

SAS Nagar, November 29
The Vigilance Bureau, Punjab, arrested Sukhdev Singh Patwari, owner of Media Printers, Industrial Area, SAS Nagar, and one of his employees, Rajwinder Singh, last night from their residences on charges of involvement in the leaking of question papers of the Punjab Nurses Registration Council. Both have been sent to police custody till Monday by a Kharar court.

Sukhdev Singh, who is also a Municipal Councillor here, has been arrested following information gathered by the Vigilance officials that the question paper was allegedly leaked after it was extracted from the recycle bin of the computer at Media Printers. The computer typing of the question paper and its printing at Media Printers was supervised by the Council’s Registrar, Ms Aruna Chabra, who has stated that she had deleted the question paper from the computer after it was sent for printing. Sources state that the arrests were based on the statements given by Ms Chabra. While Sukhdev Singh also works as a free lance journalist for certain vernacular newspapers, Rajwinder Singh is a computer operator with Media Printers.

Meanwhile, the two main accused in the case, Gurpal Singh Kang, Examination Superintendent, Punjab Nurses Registration Council and Charanjit Singh, Junior Assistant at the Council, are at large. A case against the two was registered on November 15 by the Vigilance Bureau. The Vigilance Bureau had conducted raids on the residences of these two a few days back.

According to information provided by the Vigilance officials, the papers were sold for Rs 20,000 each a day before the examination was scheduled to be held on October 24. A vernacular daily had published the question paper the day the examination was to be held. Following this the examination was cancelled and so were the examinations due to be held on October 25 and 26. More than 2600 students were to appear in the first year examination of the staff nursing course at 11 centres across North India.

Meanwhile, Mr Roshan Lal Chouhan, Judicial Magistrate, Kharar, today remanded Sukhdev Singh Patwari, and Rajinder Singh, in police remand till December 2 and ordered that they should be produced at 2 p.m. on that day. Mr Jatinderjit Singh Punn, Public Prosecutor, pleaded for five day’s police remand of the accused.

The defence counsel and Patwari himself refuted the charges of the prosecution. They alleged that Mrs Chabra in fact was the main accused who leaked the papers. They alleged that in fact she wanted to save one former minister of the previous Punjab Government and that was why she has named these persons.

Earlier yesterday, a petition seeking the grant of anticipatory bail filed by Charanjit Singh was rejected by Ms Justice Kiran Anand Lal of the Punjab and Haryana High Court.

In his petition, Charanjit Singh had sought directions to the arresting officer for releasing him on bail in the event of his arrest in a first information report registered by the Punjab Vigilance Bureau under Section 420, 166, 167 and 182 of the Indian Penal Code, besides under the provisions of the Prevention of Corruption Act.

According to the prosecution, the case was registered by the Station House Officer of the Vigilance Bureau on the basis of a report forwarded by Deputy Superintendent of Police Jaspal Singh. The DSP, as per the prosecution version, had received information from reliable sources that Charanjit Singh and another accused were leaking out question papers after accepting money from either the students or their parents.


Break ties with NDA, Badal told
Our Correspondent

Bathinda, November 29
Reacting to the comments of former Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal regarding the project to interlink all major rivers of the country where he had stated that it was not in the interest of Punjab, Mr Jagroop Singh Gill, member, Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee, said today that Mr Badal was shedding crocodile tears.

Mr Gill said here today that if the former Chief Minister was working for the interests of the state then he should break all ties with the Union Government over the issue and Union Minister Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa should resign. He said even though SAD was a partner in the Union Government, anti-Punjab policies have been thrust upon the people.

Mr Gill said Mr Badal should launch a morcha against the policy of the NDA government.


PPCC list resented
Our Correspondent

Fatehgarh Sahib, November 29
Resentment prevails among the local Congress leaders as well as among the workers for ignoring the district completely while forming a new PPCC as not even a single name from the district has figured in the released list.

While talking to Ludhiana Tribune here today, a large number of Congressmen said with their tireless efforts they had converted the district from so called Akali’s stronghold to Congress stronghold as both the seats have been won by the Congress. They said every Congress worker had added to the victory of the Congress candidates.

It is unfortunate that in the new set up, the Congressmen of the district have not been adjusted and district has been completely ignored. They also appealed to the Chief Minister to give due representation to the Congressmen in all the government-sponsored committees to be formed for the redressal of grievances and development projects.


Singla Congress observer for Shimla
Tribune News Service

Patiala, November 29
Senior Congress leader and former MP Sant Ram Singla has been appointed observer for Shimla district for the forthcoming Assembly elections in Himachal Pradesh.

The appointment of Mr Singla assumes significance because Shimla is the home district of both Congress Legislature Party leader Virbhadra Singh and present Pradesh Congress President Vidya Stokes.

Mr Singla will preside over a meeting of both Urban and Rural District Congress Committees in Shimla tomorrow at which all legislators, former legislators and senior leaders of the party have been invited.


Keep off temples, Sena warns LeT
Tribune News Service

Ropar, November 29
The Punjab unit of the Shiv Sena (Bal Thackeray) today warned the Lashkar-e-Toiba that if it continued its attacks in Hindu temples throughout the country, the Shiv Sena would not remain a mute spectator and give a befitting reply to the Pakistan-based militant outfit.

This was stated by Mr Pawan Kumar Gupta, state president of the Shiv Sena, while talking to mediapersons here today after his return from Raghunath Temple in Jammu which was recently attacked by militants.

Mr Gupta said the Shiv Sena would not make innocent people its target while taking action against the militants and their supporters. He said a befitting reply would be given, to the “Lashkar-i-Toiba” at an appropriate time.

He termed the ruling PDP in Jammu and Kashmir as a “pro-terrorist” party. He also criticised Mrs Sonia Gandhi, President of the Congress, for her statement that the PDP government had released militants after getting clearance from the Union Home Ministry. The Home Ministry had, on the contrary, contradicted the claim of Mrs Gandhi, he added.

He said by releasing militants, the PDP was promoting terrorism in the state. By doing this, the PDP was also paving the way to oust Hindu from Jammu after Kashmir, he added.

Mr Gupta said the Shiv Sena was working to strengthen its base in the villages. The Sena had formed Kisan Sena to strengthen its base, he added.

Mr Gupta also stated that if the Punjab Government did not fulfil its promises, made during the last Assembly elections, within a year, the Sena would launch a campaign against the government to compel it to fulfil the promises.

He said the Sena would associate itself with the issues, related to the general public, in the near future to make the organisation a broad-based party.


Parents blame girl’s ‘polio’ on hospital
Our Correspondent

Maur Mandi, November 29
Even as the parents of a local girl have been alleging that their daughter has been crippled for life due to polio because of negligence on part of the district health authorities, the Civil Surgeon’s office denied the same.

Sources said while Pajinder Kumar, a local resident, had alleged that his daughter, Jivika (2), had been crippled for life due to the negligence of the hospital authorities at Bathinda and Maur Mandi. An inquiry in this connection had been done by the then ADC, Mr G.K. Singh. The report indicted the Senior Medical Officer of the Maur Mandi Civil Hospital and the District Immunisation Officer (DIO), Bathinda, for negligence. The report was forwarded to higher authorities by the District Magistrate, Mr Anurag Verma, for necessary action.

The Civil Surgeon, Dr S.K. Goyal, said the reports received from Kasauli and Bombay reported that the girl was not suffering from polio. He said the limbs and legs of the body could stop functioning in case of number of diseases, including polio. However, not all such cases were that of polio. He added that the child had been responding to treatment.

Dr Goyal said according to WHO expert on polio, Dr Vohra, the girl was not suffering from polio. He claimed that no case of polio had been found positive in the region over the past few years.

He further said the SMO of Maur Mandi had helped the patient by sending a pharmacist with her in government ambulance to Bathinda. He denied that patients were not being attended to.

Pajinder Kumar admitted that his daughter had been responding to treatment from a Delhi hospital. However, he said despite improvement, the girl could not walk on her own. He alleged that the left leg of the girl had weakened due to negligence of the doctors.


Plan to end jams near Golden Temple soon
Our Correspondent

Amritsar, November 29
The elevated road project for decongesting roads leading to the Golden Temple is in its final stages of planning.

The plans have been narrowed down to four at a high-level meeting here today between a team of the Rail India Technical and Economic Services (RITES), a Central Government undertaking for urban transport planning and designing access routes, and Chief Engineer, Inderjit Chawla, Chief Town Planner, M.S. Aujla, Local Self Government, besides corporation Commissioner Jasbir Singh Bir and Mayor Mr Sunil Datti, etc. Talking to the Press, the MC Commissioner said proposals ranging from Rs 32 crore to Rs 16 crore to build 1.25-1.65 km of road length were being considered.

Mr Y.C. Rishi and Mr Ahluwalia, adviser to RITES explained in detail about the problems regarding acquisition of buildings and objections raised by the Indian National Trust for Art and Cultural Heritage (INTACH), which had clearly held the view that the visibility and panorama of the Golden Temple should not be decimated owing to higher level of the road near the temple. Hence plans are being projected to keep the vista of the temple intact. Similar is the case for Jallianwala Bagh where similar problems could arise.

“The project would be time-bound”, said Mr Chawla and a minimum of one year would be required for its completion. However, he expressed fear that litigations in case of acquisitions was a prime concern, which the project may face in its two phases of completion.

Outlining the project Mr Rishi of RITES said it would be a dual lane road of 8.5 m breadth on either side with pillars at a distance of 25 to 30 m from each other.


Butchers scuttle MC move
Tribune News Service

Patiala, November 29
City butchers today partly scuttled a move by the Municipal Corporation to not allow them to operate from within city limits from December 1 by collecting in force at the corporation office and requesting the authorities to give them a further 10-day grace period.

Around 25 butchers collected at the office of Commissioner G.S. Grewal and asked him to give a 10-day grace period. When the move was discussed with Mayor Vishnu Sharma, it was decided that this grace period should be allowed. However, when the butchers were asked to commit themselves to the 10-day period in writing, only four representatives signed the undertaking, with the others preferring to leave the corporation premises without signing the undertaking.

The city butchers, particularly those who run small businesses, have been trying unsuccessfully till now to convice the corporation authorities to allow them to run their business from within city limits. Their plea is that they have very small businesses which do not cause inconvenience to the public and that it will not be possible for them to hire space outside the city limits. They have also submitted that their small businesses do not allow them to go in for deep freezers to keep the slaughtered meat as directed by the corporation.

Today, butchers who had large businesses expressed their willingness to give an undertakings to the corporation to shift their activities outside the city. Talking to Chandigarh Tribune, Gurmeet Singh said the other butchers would also abide by the undertaking. However, he could not tell why other butchers had not signed the undertaking.

He said the city butchers were ready to slaughter chicken at the slaughterhouse near Lakkar Mandi. The slaughterhouse is presently being used to slaughter goats. He said fish could also be cut and prepared there before being brought to the shops inside the city. Small butchers, however, feel that the facility will not be able to take so much load and that some other additional facility should be created.

Corporation Health Officer Dr H.S. Mann said the butchers could use the facility by fixing times for different persons according to convenience or take up some small facility outside the city limits for the purpose. He said as regard the extension of the slaughter timings, he would take up the matter with the Corporation Commissioner as to whether any action should be taken against the butchers not keeping frozen meat in the shops after December 1. He said this had been neccessitated as majority of the butchers had refused to give an undertaking in this regard and the corporation did not want to keep postponing action against them.

Earlier, the Corporation General House had passed a resolution to shift all slaughter activities outside the city limits as there had been large-scale complaints of butchers dumping feather and other waste after slaughter into nearby drains, which clogged them and emitted foul smell. Butchers had been given separate notices in this regard nearly two months back.


Hike pension, say milk plant workers
Our Correspondent

Bathinda, November 29
The Milk Plant Workers Union has urged the authorities concerned that the pension given to the plant workers should be on the pattern of the employees of the Central and state governments.

In letters to the Union Labour Minister, the Punjab Chief Minister and the Central EPF Director, the employees have stated that the pension of the plant employees is meagre, adding that they were entitled senior posts.

Mr Mohan Verma, general secretary of the local unit of the workers union, said even those employees, whose salaries were more than Rs 10,000 per month were given pension of Rs 500 or 600 which was unjustified.

The employees have urged the authorities that their pension should be half of the basic pay plus dearness allowance, as in the case of the Central and state government employees.

Mr Verma said they were semi-government employees of the Punjab Government. Therefore, they were entitled to pension on the pattern of other employees of their category.


Repair of streetlights: forum issues notices
Our Correspondent

Muktsar, November 29
The District Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum has issued notices to the Secretary, Local Bodies, Punjab, President and Executive Officer of the local municipal council and others to appear before the forum on December 23 as they failed to follow the directions of the forum. The forum had directed the municipal council on June 5 to repair all street lights in the city within a month of issuance of the order.

Mr Sham Lal Goyal, district president of the National Consumer Awareness Group, had lodged a complaint with the forum on which the forum had passed the order in June.

Mr Goyal said in a written statement here today that the orders of the forum were not executed even after a gap of more than four months. He said although the municipal council had on July 25 secured a stay from the state commission on the order, the stay was vacated on October 24 by Mr Justice H.S. Brar, President of the State Commission.

He said the forum had asked the municipal council to put serial numbers on all street lights and maintain records about the material used.


Move to implement amendment flayed
Our Correspondent

Bathinda, November 29
The General Category Welfare Federation of thermal plant at Lehra Mohabbat has condemned the government move to implement the 85th Constitutional Amendment, which will give some special benefits to the members of the reserved categories in promotions in government jobs.

Mr Baljeet Singh, general secretary of the federation, in a press note issued here today, said the implementation of the Amendment would serve no purpose. He said the present pettern of reservation gave benefit to only those members of the reserved categories who had availed the facility on many occasions earlier also.

He said the employees belonging to the reserved categories were already getting promotions under Article 16(4A) and were adequately represented at all levels. After the implementation of the Amendment, promotions of the general category employees would dry up, he added.

Mr Baljeet Singh said the government move would create differences among employees on caste lines and vitiate the working environment in various departments. He demanded a review of promotion policy itself.


Rs 11 cr to desilt 21 km of Tangri
Our Correspondent

Patiala, November 29
Punjab Finance Minister Lal Singh said today that 21-km-long bed of Tangri river would be dug up to remove silt and Rs 11 crore would be spent on it to save the Bhunerheri and Dakala areas of the district from floods.

Speaking at a function organised at Bhunerheri for the inauguration of a 66 KV grid sub station, the minister said besides this Rs 1.27 crore would also be spent to deepen the Miranpur choe in the district ahead of the Monsoon season. He said this would give immense relief to farmers of the region from floods. The minister also announced that new taxes would not be imposed in the current year, but collection of taxes would be streamlined and corruption reduced.

Mr Lal Singh, who holds charge of the Food and Supply portfolio, said the government had earned Rs 60 crore extra this year in Sales Tax and Market though there was little increase in production from last year’s figures of 114 lakh tonnes. He said rice shellers had also earned more than Rs 100 crore extra due to better paddy procurement.


IMA’s plea to curb quackery
Our Correspondent

Phagwara, November 29
The Indian Medical Association, Punjab unit, today asked the government to curb quackery and implement the October 24 judgement of a Division Bench of the Punjab and Haryana High Court comprising Mr Justice G.S. Singhvi and Mr Justice Kiran Anand Lal.

The bench held that a person who was not enrolled on the Punjab Medical Register within the meaning of the 1956 Act could not practise the modern system of medicine.

In a letter to the Principal Secretary Punjab Government, Health and Family Welfare, Dr Raman Aggarwal, Vice-President of the state IMA, said since those who had done BAMS or GAMS were not enrolled on the Punjab Medical Register, maintained by the Punjab Medical Council under the Indian Medical Council Act of 1956, they were eligible to practise only the ayurvedic and Unani systems of medicine and not allopathy.



Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, November 29
A Division Bench of the Punjab and Haryana High Court has directed the state of Punjab to give in future 50 per cent of the post meant for constables to special police officers recruited during the period of militancy.

Pronouncing the orders on a bunch of petitions, the Bench, comprising Mr Justice Swatanter Kumar and Mr Justice Viney Mittal also directed the state government to frame a policy in this regard. Earlier during the proceedings, the petitioners had contended that while recruiting them, they were promised to be absorbed later in the police force as constables, but the same had not been done.


Police post at Durgiana temple to go
Our Correspondent

Amritsar, November 29
The Chief Minister, Capt Amarinder Singh, gave clearance for the removal of a police chowki in the Durgiana temple complex here today.

Mr Surinder Arjun, spokesperson for Sri Durgiana Committee, while addressing a press conference here today, gave to mediapersons copies of the fax received from the office of Mr K.K. Sachdeva, OSD-cum-Deputy Secretary, Legislature Cell at the Chief Minister office. The fax copy stated that the Chief Minister had referred the matter of shifting of the police chowki situated in the temple complex to the Principal Secretary, Department of Home Affairs and Justice, for immediate action in this regard. The committee had also proposed to build a multi-storey Dharamsala on the land occupied by the police chowki.


1 hurt in attack in court complex
Tribune News Service

Ropar, November 29
Surjit Singh (29), who hails from Dehar village near Chamkaur Sahib, was injured today at the judicial complex here when he was attacked by certain persons with sharpedged weapon. The incident reportedly took place after an altercation between members of two parties over a land dispute.

Mr Surjit Singh alleged that his maternal uncle was also beaten up. Later, he was taken to the local Civil Hospital.

However, the local police station declined to give any information even after repeated requests by the correspondent on the incident. The munshi on duty said no case has been registered so far in this regard.


Probe into Shagun Scheme sought
Our Correspondent

Amritsar, November 29
Mr Subaj Puri, newly appointed General Secretary of the Punjab Pardesh Congress Committee, today demanded a vigilance inquiry into ‘misappropriation’ of the Shagun Scheme.

Addressing a press conference here, he alleged that huge grants issued by the government for the scheme meant for the poor were misappropriated by officials during the Akali-BJP regime.


Petrol stations closed for 2 hrs
Our Correspondent

Bathinda, November 29
Local petrol stations remained closed for two hours today to mourn the death of a petrol station owner of Goniana Mandi. Petrol station owners had put up signboards announcing that the stations would remain closed between 9 a.m. to 11 a.m. The local residents had to face inconvenience due to the closure.


Four wagons of goods train derail

Bathinda, November 29
Railway traffic was disrupted on the Bathinda-Dabwali section following derailment of four wagons of a goods train today near Dhaban railway station, 16 km from Dabwali, railway sources said.

The authorities declared that Ahmedabad-Jammu Express and Kalka-Jodhpur Express would run late for an indefinite period in the wake of the derailment.

No casualty was reported in the mishap. PTI


Farmers Club launched
Our Correspondent

Fatehgarh Sahib, November 29
The Farmers Club has been launched in the district at Baher village in Bassi Pathana block today. Mr B.S. Sidhu, Additional Deputy Commissioner (Development), inaugurated the club. In his address, he highlighted the importance and benefits of Farmers Clubs and termed it as the best medium for transfer of technology from lab to land, creation of awareness among rural people on various development programmes and social engineering.

Mr K.L. Jhamb, AGM, NABARD, in his address highlighted the aim of the club and said the club was a forum having an informal organisational structure formed for sustaining the enthusiasm of the villagers and helping them in taking part in the socio-economic development of the area. It would help in bringing together the banks and government departments, extension agencies and expose them to the Vikas Volunteer Vahini (VVV) programme and various schemes of government and banks for integrated development of rural areas.

On this occasion, a free medical check-up camp for rural women and children of the village was also organised by the SBOP, ADB, Bassi Pathana, in coordination with the Civil Hospital, Bassi Pathana, in which Senior Medical Officer and other doctors from the Civil Hospital examined the women/children and gave them the medicines.


Karam Singh is Punjab DPR

Chandigarh, November 29
Mr Karam Singh, Director, Hospitality, Punjab, has been given additional charge as Director, Information and Public Relations. Mr Chander Gaind has been given additional charge as Land Acquisition Officer, PWD Jalandhar, and also as Administrator of the Improvement Trust there.

Mr Prabhjot Singh Mand has been posted as Additional Secretary, Transport, with additional charge as Deputy Director, Colonisation, vice Mr S.S. Khara, who has been posted as Joint Secretary, Excise and Taxation. TNS


MC chief, EO held for embezzlement
Tribune News Service

Rampura, November 29
Mr Charanjit Singh Jatana, President, of the local Municipal Council and confidant of former Power Minister, Sikander Singh Malooka and Executive Officer (EO) Rakesh Kumar Garg were arrested today for embezzling council funds and demanding bribe from a person for making payment of his dues.

Police sources said that Mr Jatana and Mr Garg were arrested this afternoon after a case under Section 408 of the IPC and Sections 7 and 13 (2) of the Prevention of Corruption Act were registered against them.

According to information a resident of the town Mr Vijay Kumar participated in the auction of shops of the council. His bid was the highest. He deposited the initial amount of Rs 1.97 lakh with the council.

Later the auction was cancelled on technical ground. Mr Vijay Kumar made several visits to the council office to get his money back.

Fed up at the attitude of the authorities and demands of bribe allegedly by Mr Jatana and Mr Garg, he complained to the police, that bribe of Rs 30,000 was being demanded for the release of his payment.

Mr Balbir Singh Khaira, DSP, confirmed arrest of Mr Jatana and Mr Garg.

He pointed out that an audit of Municipal Council funds revealed there was only Rs 1400 and the accused had embezzled the money deposited by the complainant. The accused will be produced in the court tomorrow.


Schoolboy’s murder suspects held
Our Correspondent

Tarn Taran, November 29
The local district police claims to have resolved the murder of Ranjit Singh, alias Rana (12), a student of class V of Amandeep Memorial Public School, Chohla Sahib, who was found murdered on the midnight of October 28-29. Mr Narinder Bhargav, SSP, told the media here today, that Sewa Singh, Baldev Singh, alias Gurdev Singh, Jarnail Kaur, wife of Sewa Singh, Dalbir Kaur, wife of Baldev, Nachhattar Singh, son of Sewa Singh all residents of Sabhra village under Patti police station and Rasal Singh, a resident of Amarkot had been named as suspects in the FIR.

Mr Bhargav said Sewa Singh and Baldev Singh had surrendered before the police.

Ranjit Singh, alias Rana, was kidnapped from his school on October 28 by a cyclist who in connivance with other accused took him to a deserted place near Landeke village under the Moga Sadar police station. The body of the boy was found the next day.


Four held for smuggling liquor
Our Correspondent

Bathinda, November 29
The police has arrested four persons near here for smuggling country made liquor.

According to information, Mr Gurdev Singh Bhalla, SHO, Bhucho Mandi police chowki had laid a naka near the town when four persons in a car were stopped. The police seized 96 bottles of countrymade liquor from them. The accused have been identified as Subash Arora, Pappu, Charna, Bhola Singh, all resident of Bhucho Mandi. A case has been registered under Sections 61, 1 and 14, Excise Act.


Man gets 10-yr RI for wife’s murder

Sangrur, November 29
A local court today sentenced Sukhdev Singh of Hassanpur village under the Dhuri police station to rigorous imprisonment for 10 years on the charge of murdering his wife Rajpal Kaur for more dowry and to get transferred a handsome chunk of the agricultural land of his father-in-law in his name.

According to the prosecution case, the deceased was mother of two and her marriage was solemnised five years prior to the incident.

To satisfy Sukhdev Singh’s lust for more dowry, the father of the deceased paid him Rs 30,000 each on three occasions. Just before Rajpal Kaur was killed, her husband had demanded Rs 10,000.

Having failed to satisfy the greed of her husband, the wife was found dead at Sukhdev Singh’s house under suspicious circumstances on February 7, 2000, and a case of dowry death was registered at the Dhuri police station.

The order was handed down by Additional Session Judge Gurbir Singh. PTI


Booked for selling expired pesticides
Our Correspondent

Mansa, November 29
The city police has registered a case under Sections 420 and 427 of the IPC against Bhim Sain Goyal, a pesticide dealer and former president of the Mansa Fertilisers, Seeds and Pesticides Dealers Association for selling expired, substandard and spurious pesticides. The case has been registered on the complaint of Mr Darshan Singh, lambardar of Bhame Kalan village, in the district.

According to the FIR, the complainant purchased 20 kg of a pesticide manufactured by Godrej Agro Vet Limited, Mumbai, from Union Seed Agency on August 22, 2000. The dealer had changed the date of manufacturing, expiry and the price of pesticides. The pesticides had already expired on the date of sale to the farmer by the owner of Union Seed Agency. The farmer had to suffer losses on account of this.

Meanwhile, Goyal applied for anticipatory bail today in the court of the Additional District and Sessions Judge.


Cash, jewellery looted
Our Correspondent

Jalandhar, November 29
A group of thieves decamped with some cash and gold ornaments from the residence of an industrialist at Riazpura Mohalla here today. Mr Agya Ram Gulati, house owner, told the police that he went for a walk early in the morning after locking the main door of the house even as his family were asleep.

On his return he found that the lock was broken. Subsequently, he found some cash and gold ornaments missing, A case has been registered.

Home | Punjab | Haryana | Jammu & Kashmir | Himachal Pradesh | Regional Briefs | Nation | Editorial |
Business | Sport | World | Mailbag | In Spotlight | Chandigarh Tribune | Ludhiana Tribune
50 years of Independence | Tercentenary Celebrations |
122 Years of Trust | Calendar | Weather | Archive | Subscribe | Suggestion | E-mail |