Wednesday, December 25, 2002, Chandigarh, India

National Capital Region--Delhi




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Shaheedi Jor Mela — last political battle of 2002
Chandigarh, December 24
Though the postponement of municipal elections in Punjab may deprive political conferences, to be held during Shaheedi Jor Mela at Fatehgarh Sahib from tomorrow, of some of their sheen still it would be the last opportunity for both the ruling Congress and its main rival Shiromani Akali Dal to showcase their strength before the close of the year.

Amritsar in limelight again
Amritsar, December 24
This holy city which was “forgotten” by the Shiromani Akali Dal during its regime in Punjab, again became hub of their political activities this year. Leaders and activists of the rival Akali factions started thronging Akal Takht to lodge complaints against each other.

Punjab MPs’ funds remain unutilised
Chandigarh, December 24
The Punjab Government and its official machinery, which often complaints about shortage of funds, has not been able to spend the funds provided by the Union Government to each member of Parliament under the Local Area Development Scheme.

Children dress as Santa Claus during a gathering on Christmas eve in Amritsar on Tuesday
Children dress as Santa Claus during a gathering on Christmas eve in Amritsar on Tuesday. — Reuters




‘Centre partially waived loan’
Chandigarh, December 24
The Chief Minister, Capt Amarinder Singh, said here today that the Centre had not waived the entire loan taken by Punjab to fight militancy during terrorism and accused former Prime Minister, I.K. Gujral and former Chief Minister, Parkash Singh Badal of giving false information.

Hawala racket unearthed
Jalandhar, December 24
The Enforcement Department today unearthed a hawala racket involving a sum of about Rs 1 crore and seized Rs 7 lakh from the residence of a hawala money distributor at the Niwan Saraj Ganj locality here.

Daylight robbery in cooperative bank
Surewal (Ropar), December 24
In a daylight robbery, three persons travelling in a Maruti car looted a roadside branch of the Ropar Central Cooperative Bank Surewal, about 60 km from Ropar. As per the information collected, the robbers came to bank located on the main road of the Surewal village at about 2 pm in a red Maruti car and took away Rs 94,390.

KERPL: engineers write to Orissa CM
Ropar, December 24
In a new twist to the KERPL controversy dogging the PSEB, the Northern India Power Engineers’ Federation, has written an open latter to the Orissa Chief Minister, alleging bungling in the sale of Gridco power to the PSEB through the KERPL.


Poll deferment flayed
Hoshiarpur, December 24
Mr Des Raj Dhugga, SAD MLA from Garhdiwala, gave his reaction on the decision of the Punjab Government to postpone the municipal council elections scheduled to be held on January 23, 2003 in the state while talking to this correspondent on the telephone today.


Battle for dera: 5 hurt, 76 held
Amritsar, December 24
Five persons were injured in an exchange of fire between two groups over the possession of a property at Gharinda village in the district, the police said. The police has arrested 76 persons in this connection.

52,000 enlisted for Fazilka MC poll
Fazilka, December 24
Over 52,000 persons have been enlisted as voters for elections to the 21 wards of the Fazilka Municipal Council.
According to details furnished by officials of the Council, an increase of more than 10,000 voters has been recorded during the past 5 years after the civil poll of 1998.

Dogra to withdraw remarks: IMA
Phagwara, December 24
A deputation of the Indian Medical Association, Punjab, comprising Dr Kuldip Singh, Dr Raman Aggarwal, Dr Rajinder Sharma and Dr Ahuja met Mr Romesh Dogra, Minister of Health and Family Welfare, to apprise him of the association’s reaction to his statement given to a private TV channel that ayurvedic doctors should be allowed to prescribed allopathic medicines.

PRTC workers stage dharna
Bathinda, December 24
Workers of the PRTC today staged a dharna near the local bus stand in protest against the alleged victimisation of their leaders.
The members of the PRTC Workers Union raised slogans against the authorities concerned.

Where have historical gates gone?
Amritsar, December 24
Mystery shrouds the “disappearance” of two historical “darwazas” (gates) named after two Sikh warriors — Jassa Singh Ramgarhia and Jassa Singh Ahluwalia. Nobody is willing to tell when and why the rich heritage belonging to the period of the legendary Maharaja Ranjit Singh was demolished.

CM’s application dismissed
Chandigarh, December 24
A local court today dismissed an application moved by the Chief Minister of Punjab, Capt Amarinder Singh, through his counsel for quashing a defamation complaint filed against the Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee.

Sidhu’s plea rejected
Patiala, December 24
A local court today rejected the application filed by former PPSC Chairman Ravinderpal Singh Sidhu demanding a copy of the order sanctioning his removal from the post by the President.

Sikh women take out rally on helmet issue
Patiala, December 24
Sikh women today took out a protest rally in the city under the banner of the Shiromani Akali Dal (Amritsar) to protest against the Supreme Court ruling, making it mandatory for women two-wheeler drivers as well as pillion riders to wear helmets.

Centres set up to rehabilitate unemployed youth
Faridkot, December 24
The Punjab Government has set up a centre, Punjab Youth training and employment (C-Pyte), to impart educative, physical and other types of training particularly to the Punjabi youth in order to rehabilitate them.

Anti-pollution masks for cops
Phagwara, December 24
The traffic police personnel here have been provided with anti-pollution masks for protecting them from smoke, dust and other pollutants and improving their performance.

Municipal corporation status for Bathinda soon
Bathinda, December 24
The long-pending demand of the local residents regarding granting Municipal Corporation status to the local Municipal Council is going to be fulfilled soon.
Talking to TNS over phone this evening, Mr Surinder Singla, local MLA, stated that the Punjab Chief Minister had recently promised that Bathinda would soon have a Municipal Corporation in place of the municipal council.

PTU former VC gets police remand
Jalandhar, December 24
The Chief Judicial Magistrate, Mr A.S. Grewal, today remanded former Vice-Chancellor of Punjab Technical University H.S. Gurm, who was the prime accused in the multi-crore PTU scam, in police custody for two days.

Consumer Day observed
Amritsar, December 24
Consumers attended an open house session on the occasion of the National Consumer Day, organised under the chairmanship of Mr G.S. Daria, General Manager, Telecom, at Majitha House here today. Stating this in a press note, Mr Daria said consumers presented suggestions to improve telecom services.

Bandh against temple incident
Jalalabad, December 24
A bandh was observed here yesterday to press the police to take action against the accused, who allegedly attempted to take the forcible possession of the Shiv Mandir and Ek Jot Serve Vyapak temples’ premises located at local Gandhi Nagar. A protest march was also taken out in the town.


Farmers advised to market produce
Bathinda, December 24
Nearly 350 farmers, including women, were briefed about the latest developments by horticulture, agriculture and dairy farming experts at the local Krishi Vigyan Kendra a convention, commemorating the birth anniversary of former Prime Minister Chaudary Charan Singh, here yesterday.


Inquiry into voter list ordered
Kharar, December 24
The State Election Commissioner, Punjab, Mr C.L. Bains, has ordered an inquiry into the allegation of irregularities in the preparation of voter lists especially in ward no 15 and 8 and has asked the Deputy Commissioner, Ropar, to get the two complaints verified through the ADC and send the report to the commission within 10 days.


2 gangsters held
Amritsar, December 24
“Sonu Pistol” alias Sunil Kumar, a notorious gangster and Sanjeev Kumar, alias Babba head of the Cobra gang, were arrested following a tip-off by the police from the Loharka bypass late last night.

Smuggler held
Pathankot, December 24
The police authorities, sadar, here yesterday arrested a person allegedly belonging to a gang of smugglers.
He has been identified as Didar Singh, alias Dara of Lakhanpur, Jammu and Kashmir. He was arrested from near Madhopur Guest House, near here following a tip-off.


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