Wednesday, January 15, 2003, Chandigarh, India


P U N J A B    S T O R I E S



Rs 100 cr involved in kidney scam: PHRO
Health Minister recommended case of Dr Sareen: Dang
Varinder Walia and Ashok Sethi

Amritsar, January 14
Even as warrants have been issued against two senior doctors associated with Dr P.K. Sareen, the Punjab Health Minister, Mr R.C. Dogra, finds himself in a tight spot following the release of a recommendation letter of his acquaintance on his official letterhead to the main accused in the infamous kidney racket for providing “all possible help for a kidney problem” by the Punjab Human Rights Organisation (PHRO).

Earlier, Mr Dogra had refuted the charges that he had reprimanded the police officials for interfering with the kidney transplantation or issued directions to the members of the authorisation committee to clear the pending cases.

However, CPI leader Satya Pal Dang showed letter stating that during his visit to the city last year, Mr Dogra had declared at a press conference on November 1 that “no doctor or the chairman of the authorisation committee were involved in the illegal kidney trade.” Mr Dogra had also stated that he would ask the DGP to issue certain directions to the police in this regard. Mr Dang added that the minister had also said: “Fearing police action, transplant surgeon had also gone underground.” However, despite best efforts, Mr Dogra could not be contacted for comments.

Meanwhile, the kidney scam today took a new turn as Dr Prem Arora, a former member of the authorisation committee, gave a statement in the court that he had been opposing the “wrongdoings” involving the unrelated kidney cases, but in vain. Dr Arora, who recorded his statement under Section 164, said the indifferent attitude of the chairman and other members of the committee had proved that they were allegedly in league with the main accused and the middlemen.

Mr S.K. Sharma, IG (Jalandhar zone), told The Tribune that the police was trying to get warrants against Dr Bhupinder Singh Sandhu, Dr P.K. Jain — both juniors of Dr Sareen — and Mr Kulwinder Singh, a computer operator of the renal transplant clinic. He said if they did not surrender on their own they could be declared proclaimed offenders. Mr Sharma said the police was collecting evidence against certain mediapersons, including one belonging to a national English daily.

The PHRO has alleged that 99 per cent of the unrelated transplants had been done after taking money which amounted to Rs 100 crore. The report also named senior police officials and politicians who were involved in the nexus. The report said the scam could involve some staff members of the Prime Minister Office, Deputy Prime Minister L.K. Advani, Mr Farooq Abdullah, Mr Dogra, Congress leader Ghulam Nabi Azad and Jammu and Kashmir Deputy Chief Minister, Mr Mangat Ram Sharma, who had recommended and provided false identification of donors and recipients.

The PHRO report has also alleged that the investigating officers had failed to handle the kidney scam properly from the beginning. It stated that police had ignored affidavits submitted by a donor in June, 2000, who was lured to donate his kidney for Rs 5 lakh both got only Rs 45,000.

The report levelled serious charges against the then IG (Border Range), Mr Rajan Gupta, stating that he used his influence on some press correspondents to stop the news coverage of accused, brokers and doctors. The report adds that Mr Gupta had instructed the Amritsar SSP that investigation should be shifted to the crime branch. The reports point out that the authorisation committee and the Punjab Nephrology Society were “not feeling safe” for doctors in investigation by the crime branch that is why they got the inquiry shifted to the Vigilance Bureau by influencing the DGP through the Health Minister. The report further reads “Mr Dogra was protecting himself by shielding the doctors and members of the authorisation committee as he himself had recommended many patients for illegal kidney transplatation.

The annexure of the PHRO has also mentioned the names of senior police officers, including that of a district police chief of the Border Range too who got their kin operated on the private hospital here by the accused doctors.

Meanwhile, the SIT raided houses in certain elegant localities to collect evidence where donors were kept captive before removing kidneys. The record of Kakkar Hospital pertaining to kidney transplants was also seized by the SIT.

The Indian Medical Association (IMA) and the Punjab Medical and Dental Teachers Association today blocked traffic to protest against the arrest of two doctors. Health services were paralysed on the second day also due to an indefinite strike by doctors.


Kidney scam: PCMSA for strict action
Tribune Reporters

Hoshiarpur, January 14
The Punjab Civil Medical Services Association (PCMSA) considers it unfortunate, disgraceful and inhuman that a scientific procedure such as that of renal transplant has been brought into disrepute by greedy and materialistic elements.

In a press note issued here yesterday, Dr Hardeep Singh, president, and Dr Ajay Bagga, publicity secretary of the PCMSA, said vested interests had made human organs a purchaseable commodity. They stressed the need for upholding the ideals contained in the Hippocratic oath. While severely criticising the ongoing trade in human organs, Dr Hardeep Singh and Dr Bagga stressed the need for encouraging voluntary organ donation.

They demanded a probe by a sitting High Court judge into the kidney scam to punish the real culprits.

They urged the Punjab Government to take strict action against all those involved in the scam.

GURDASPUR: An emergency meeting of the Gurdaspur Branch of the Indian Medical Association here today condemned the arrest of Dr O.P. Mahajan and Dr P.K. Sareen in the kidney sale racket at Amritsar. It demanded a high-level probe into all aspects of the episode.

Dr Ashok Ohemi president of the association said that an indefinite strike would be resorted to by the doctors in case the government did not held the requests of the Indian Medical Association.


Mann, Ramoowalia blame Cong for ills
Our Correspondent

Muktsar, January 14
Mr Simranjit Singh Mann, president, Shiromani Akali Dal (Amritsar), today said the Union Government was pursuing anti-farmer policies and the debt-ridden farmers were being forced to commit suicide.

Addressing the rally, Mr Mann said the party would press for the demands of farmers in Parliament. He said the Congress, after assuming power in the state, had forgotten all its poll promises.

He alleged that the old age and social security pensions had been stopped by the state government.

He said the power shortage in the state could not be fulfilled till a nuclear power plant was set up and he added that a site for the same had already been selected by Union Government agencies. He alleged that the Congress government did not let the work start for the plant near Patran due to vested interests.

Mr Mann demanded that the Wagah border with Pakistan should be opened immediately for business and trade. Trade through these routes must be started and the produce of farmers sent to Islamic countries in lieu of gas, petrol and other such products.

Addressing a separate rally, Mr Balwant Singh Ramoowalia president, Lok Bhalai Party, accused the state government of overlooking the interests of the people. He alleged that the Congress government was shedding crocodile tears on certain critical issues and the Haryana Congress had been negating the statements of the Punjab Congress on some of these issues.

Mr Ramoowalia said the state and union governments had failed to stop human trafficking and thousands of Punjabis were languishing in jails of various countries. He said that due to the lack of employment opportunities and fraud travel agents, these youths had been facing numerous problems.


SHSAD targets Congress, SAD
Tohra absent due to illness

Our Correspondent

Muktsar, January 14
The Sarb Hind Shiromani Akali Dal (SHSAD) today alleged that the Amarinder Singh-led Congress government had adopted an anti-people stand and every section of society, including employees, students, farmers, traders and industrialists, were feeling the pinch of such a policy.

The SHSAD conference failed to attract the expected number of activists at the Maghi Mela here. Leaders attributed this to the fact that Mr Gurcharan Singh Tohra, President of the party, was absent due to health reasons. Some leaders also alleged that their workers had been “taken away” by another political party. The leaders, who braved cold winds, said that the sacking of employees en bloc was unjust. Only those employees who were guilty of getting their jobs through corruption should be sacked.

Mr Prem Singh Chandumajra, general secretary, said the party was committed to fighting for the rights of every section of Punjabis, including employees. He said the government was not paying heed to the problems faced by people even though certain sections of the media had been highlighting these.

Condemning the lathi charges every other day on protesting unemployed teachers and sacked panchayat secretaries, he said the party supported their demands.

He said the party was concerned over the river water issue and the “cheating” of the people by successive governments on the issues of the SYL, Chandigarh and Punjabi-speaking areas. He said the power tariff needed to be reduced by curbing power theft. He accused Mr Badal of “cheating” the Punjabis during his rule by bartering away the interest of Punjab to Haryana.

Mr Jasbir Singh Rode, who focused on Sikhism, said the party would launch a statewide campaign to create awareness about drug abuse and declining values. It would also lay stress on the baptising of Sikhs to preserve their unique identity.

Mr Ravi Inder Singh, former Speaker, Punjab Assembly, also addressed the conference along with leaders of the SHSAD.

Those who attended the conference included Baba Sarabjit Singh Bedi, Mr Jagdev Singh Talwandi, Capt Harcharan Singh Rode and Mr Ishatpal Singh Khialawala, district president, Bathinda. 


CM fails to visit gurdwara

Muktsar, January 14
The Punjab Chief Minister, Capt Amarinder Singh, today failed to pay obeisance at the historical gurdwara of Tutti Gandhi Sahib here today on the occasion of Maghi Mela. Capt Amarinder Singh, though announcing at the party conference today that the he would pay his obeisance at the historical gurdwara, went straight to the helipad to return to Chandigarh. TNS


Lakhs of devotees take holy dip

Muktsar, January 14
Lakhs of devotees took a dip in the tank of historic gurdwara on the occasion of Maghi today despite the biting cold.

Devotees attended the akhand path, bhog and kirtan to mark the occasion.

Devotees also took a dip in the tanks of historic gurdwaras of Nanaksar, Takhtupura and Faridkot, reports here said. PTI

Phillaur (OC): Thousands of devotees took a dip in the Sutlej besides different sarovars of temples and gurdwaras here on Tuesday.

Hundreds of devotees paid obeisance at Chintpurni Temple in Himachal Pradesh.


Liquor flows during Maghi Mela
Our Correspondent

Muktsar, January 14
While yesterday dance groups kept the crowd hooked to the Maghi Mela, today was the turn of liquor vends, which minted money throughout the day, despite a customary ban imposed by the district authorities.

As per norms, the district administration and the Excise authorities order the closure of liquor vends on the days of religious celebrations and melas, the police personnel on duty at the mela site were ignorant about any such orders.

Interestingly, a large number of government vehicles with red-lights on top and some of them having stickers reading “Duty Magistrate” were seen moving in the area, but none of these officers bothered to see that the liquor vend on the Muktsar-Bathinda main chowk was open and selling liquor.

Not only liquor but even ‘bhang’ kept the crowd at a high. These in ‘high spirits’ were seen raising slogans for various political parties at their respective rallies.


Punjab sits over 353-cr drought relief
Sarbjit Dhaliwal
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 14
With the lifting of the road blockade by farmers at Kharar yesterday, the Punjab Government has got only a temporary relief. There is a lot of resentment among farmers against the state government. And they are in a mood to launch another phase of agitation against the government.

The government is sitting over Rs 353 crore, which is to be distributed as drought relief among farmers. The State Revenue Department has several times reminded the authorities concerned to release the money for distribution among drought-affected farmers but its requests have gone unheeded so far.

Interestingly, the Union Government had released its share of drought relief from the Natural Calamity Fund long back. The money is now in the state Treasury. A senior officer of the Revenue Department said “We are ready with the lists of farmers to distribute the relief money. But it is not known when the money will come to us. The state government had sought about Rs 3,600 crore as drought relief from the Natural Calamity Contingency Relief Fund but the Union Government turned down Punjab’s request.

Under pressure from paddy-growing states, the Union Government had announced an additional relief of Rs 20 per quintal on paddy shortly before the start of its procurement. That was to be paid over and above the minimum support price (MSP) which was not revised by the Centre this year. However, this money has also not been distributed among paddy growers by state procurement agencies yet, according to Mr Manjit Singh Quadian, a senior leader of the BKU. He said the FCI had already paid Rs 20 per quintal on the paddy procured by it.

Before the Assembly elections, the Congress had promised to pay Rs 30 per quintal as bonus to farmers in Punjab on last year’s paddy. After the formation of the government, it was announced that Rs 30 would be paid in three equal instalments in one and a half years. The first instalment was to be paid during the just-ended paddy procurement season. Mr Quadian says it was not been paid. The issue was also raised at the recent all-party meeting on the SYL issue.

The attempts to get official version proved futile as no one from the Food and Supplies Department was available.

On the sugarcane front, the government has only cleared the dues of farmers who had supplied the cane to Morinda Cooperative Sugar Mill. About Rs 66 crore is still pending against the government. Sources said that six organisations of farmers will meet Chief Minister Amarinder Singh next week to seek the clearance of all dues, besides drought relief, bonus on paddy etc. Mr Quadian says his organisation would also urge the government to give farmers their due or face another agitation.

Farmer leaders say that only a few weeks ago, the state government had claimed that its financial position has improved, enabling it to release about Rs 100 crore for employees and pensioners to pay additional DA. However, when farmers seek their dues and relief provided by the Union Government, the Punjab Government, starts talking about the financial crisis.


Govt sops for Punjabi NRIs
Tribune Reporters and Agencies

An NRI bursts into tears
An NRI bursts into tears during the annual NRI convention held at Jalandhar on Tuesday.

Jalandhar, January 14
The Punjab Government today announced sops for Punjabi NRIs, including assurance for establishing fast-track courts to deal with their property dispute cases, matching government grant for village development projects by NRIs, at the annual convention of the NRI Sabha, Punjab, at Lyallpur Khalsa College here.

“Considering the large-scale cases pending regarding the alleged Encroachment of NRIs, properties the state government has moved a recommendation to the Punjab and Haryana High Court to seek establishment of fast-track courts to deal with the cases on day-to-day basis” Mr D.S. Bains, Commissioner of NRI Department announced here today on behalf of the Chief Minister, who’s flight could not take off for the city due to bad weather.

The government has also decided to give matching grants to the projects for village development initiated by Punjabi NRIs and appointment of an NRI numberdar in a village where 20 or more than 20 NRIs reside, Mr Bains added.

While addressing the gathering, state Industry Minister Avtar Henry assured the NRIs that the provision of prompt and single-window clearance for NRI projects had been kept in the draft of the new industrial policy. A nodal government officer would be deputed in the Industry Department to protect NRIs from red tapism.

Prominent among others who attended the convention included Mr Ujjal Dosanjh, Mr H.S. Hanspal, state Congress chief, Choudhary Jagjit Singh, Local Bodies Minister, Mr Mohinder Singh Kaypee, Technical Education Minister, Mr R.C. Dogra, Health Minister, and Mr Amarjit Singh Samara, Revenue Minister.

On the occasion former British Columbia Premier Ujjal Dosanjh today categorically stated that NRIs would be ready to invest in Punjab or for that matter in India, provided there was a corruption-free system in the country.

However, the assurances by the ministers had no effect on Mr Dosanjh, who bluntly called for a change in Indian society and system and make it what freedom fighters had dreamt of.

He said education and employment must be provided to everybody here so that Punjabi youths did not have to go abroad in search of jobs.

Regarding the flight of a large number of scientists, technocrats and doctors from India, Mr Dosanjh said it was a matter of shame for the country. “I find the people of this country taking pride of the large number of software engineers in various countries instead of being concerned,” the former British Premier, who hails from nearby Dosanjh Kalan village said.

Mr Balbir Singh, MP and vice patron of the sabha, in his address said the state government had taken new initiatives to redress the grievances of NRIs.

He further said a special NRI bhavan was being constructed in Jalandhar, which would house most of the government offices. “Besides, it was decided to nominate an NRI as a member of the district grievances committees concerned for the speedy redress of their problems”, he added.

Meanwhile, the Punjab Chief Minister’s absence from the NRI Convention here today dispirited NRIs, who had braved the chill and fog to have a word with him on their problems. They kept waiting for the CM as the organisers has promised that the CM would be reaching the venue at 10.30 a.m.

PHAGWARA: Former Premier of British Columbia, Canada, Ujjal Dosanjh in an informal chat with newspersons at the residence of Dr R.S. Likhari here on Tuesday said the Parvasi Bharatiya Divas in New Delhi could attract NRI investments. Mr Dosanjh, who was among the 10 outstanding NRIs to be awarded the Parvasi Bharatiya Sanman, said capital hated red-tapism, inequality and injustice.

Even dual citizenship was good so far as Canada was concerned since it was a multi-cultural country, he said.

He said it was a myth that Chinese NRIs invested more there. Only multinational companies and very rich Chinese NRIs did so but not the ordinary Chinese, he added.

His son Aseem, who was accompanying him, lauded the Parvasi Bharatiya Divas.

Earlier, Mr Dosanjh visited his native village Dosanjh, 8 km from here. He spent two hours there and visited the school founded by his father Pritam Singh.


Bhai Ranjit Singh marries
Tribune News Service

Mansuran (Ludhiana), January 14
A former Akal Takht Jathedar, Bhai Ranjit Singh today got married to Ms Gurpreet Kaur Saluja at a simple function held at Gurdwara Damdama Sahib Asthan Baba Sahib Singh Bedi, the headquarters of the Sant Samaj here today. Nearly 400 persons, including political and religious leaders, attended the function which was organised by the Sant Samaj chief, Baba Sarabjot Singh Bedi, who was supervising the arrangements.

The Anand Karaj was performed by Bhai Mohan Singh, former Head Granthi of Harmandir Sahib and Prof Darshan Singh, a former Jathedar of the Akal Takht. Among those present were two former SGPC presidents, Mr Jagdev Singh Talwandi and Mr Prem Singh Lalpura, a senior Akali leader, Mr Ravi Inder Singh, the general secretary of the Sarb Hind Akali Dal, Mr Jasbir Singh Ghuman and around 25 members of the Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee (DSGPC).

Talking to reporters after the marriage, Bhai Ranjit Singh, 45, said he was feeling “very happy”. He said it was an arranged marriage. Ms Gurpreet Kaur is the daughter of late Mohinder Singh Saluja. She is said to be a graduate and 35 years of age. A number of relatives of the bride were also present on the occasion.

Bhai Ranjit Singh has served as Jathedar of the Akal Takht for over two years. He was removed from the post following tussle between former SGPC president Gurcharan Singh Tohra and former Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal. Since then he has sided with Mr Tohra. Mr Tohra could not attend today’s function since he is recuperating in Delhi after by pass surgery.

He is settled in Amritsar and spends most of his time there only. However, he said, he had resolved to serve the Panth even after his marriage.


Notice of motion issued
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 14
Taking up a petition filed with an “objective of knowing the entire story as to how about 20,000 illegal colonies came into existence urbanising about 1 lakh acres involving a scam of Rs 40,000 crore”, the Punjab and Haryana High Court has issued notice of motion.

In his petition against the states of Punjab and Haryana, besides four other respondents, Ropar district resident Dr B. Singh also sought directions for conducting a detailed investigation, in the interest of justice, to fix responsibility for such gross violations”.

He added that the “legal provisions did not permit even a single construction and the penal provisions attracted imprisonment upto three years, besides demolition of the illegal construction.

In his detailed petition, Dr Singh added that there was no provision for the regularisation of illegal colonies and the act was leading to promotion of corruption. Quoting a newspaper report, Dr Singh asserted that unscrupulous property dealers were setting up unauthorised colonies unhindered in the area despite the state government having promulgated Punjab Apartment and Property Regulation Act seven years ago.

Kohar’s hearing on Jan 24

Taking up a petition filed by Punjab MLA Ajit Singh Kohar, seeking the grant of bail in a cheating and corruption case, the Punjab and Haryana High Court fixed January 24 as the next date of hearing in the case.

He was earlier booked by the Vigilance Department in a case registered under Section 420 and 120-B of the Indian Penal Code, besides under the provisions of the Prevention of Corruption Act.

According to the prosecution, the petitioner, in 1999, had purchased land by way of benami transaction in Faridkot district and had also obtained five tubewell connections in the names of relatives on priority basis. Seeking the grant of bail, his counsel had contended that the petitioner had been implicated in a false case.


PPSC examiners get bail
Tribune News Service

Patiala, January 14
The District and Sessions Court today accepted the regular bail application filed by three teachers accused of committing irregularities in the marking of answersheets of candidates sitting for various examinations during the tenure of Mr Ravinderpal Singh Sidhu under the Punjab Public Service Commission.

District and Sessions Judge S.N. Aggarwal granted regular bail to Prof Amarjit Singh Kang, Dr Shamsher Singh and Prof Jaspal Singh in the case after they furnished a bond of Rs 50,000 each. He also directed another accused teacher in the case, Jagdish Kalra, who could not appear in the court today, to present himself before the court on January 30.


Signature drive against terrorism
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 14
The Punjab Bharatiya Yuva Janata Morcha (BYJM) today launched a signature campaign against terrorism. Led by Mr Manjit Singh Rai, President of the state unit of the morcha, BYJM activists of the morcha met Punjab Governor, Lieut-Gen J.F.R. Jacob ( retd), to apprise him of the campaign. They were accompanied by Mr Avinash Jaiswal, General Secretary of the state BJP.

The Governor told BYJM activists that their effort was in the right direction. There was need for building strong public opinion against terrorism in the country. All should collectively fight against terrorism, the Governor added.


R-Day function at Fatehgarh Sahib
Our Correspondent

Fatehgarh Sahib, January 14
The state-level Republic Day function will be celebrated in the district at which Lt-Gen J.F.R. Jacob (retd), Governor, will unfurl the national flag. This was stated by Mr Vikas Pratap, Deputy Commissioner, while addressing a meeting of district officials today.

He directed the officials to make all-out efforts for the success of the function. He said all government departments would present tableaux depicting their achievements. The Governor would take salute from the continents of the NCC, police and paramilitary forces. He would also distribute sewing machines and tricycles to widows and physically challenged persons and honour outstanding employees.

Mr B. Chandra Sekhar, SSP, also addressed the meeting.


Patch-up’ between DC, Dalit leader
Our Correspondent

Amritsar, January 14
Mr Inderjit Singh Basarke, president District Congress Committee (Rural) yesterday claimed to have resolved the dispute between Mr Amrik Singh Mardi, a Dalit Congress leader and the Deputy Commissioner Mr Iqbal Singh Sidhu. He described the incident as nothing but a misunderstanding between the two.

Addressing a press conference at the District Congress Office (Rural) here, Mr Basarke along with Mr Mardi said he had been directed by the Chief Minister, Capt Amarinder Singh and the Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee President Mr H.S. Hanspal, to look into the matter in which Mr Mardi had alleged that the DC had misbehaved with him.


LIC officers work in tent
Tribune News Service

Sangrur, January 14
About 12 development officers of the local branch of the Life Insurance Corporation of India (LIC) have been performing their duties in a tent pitched on the roadside outside the main LIC office on the Railway road here. They have been protesting since yesterday to draw the attention of top LIC authorities to less office space.

Sources said the existing building of the local LIC branch office had space for just six development officers and was insufficient to accommodate others. “When all development officers are present in the office some of them have to perform duties by standing in the cabin,” the sources added.

A spokesman for development officers said the protest would continue till their demand was accepted. When contacted, Mr Roshan Lal Jariyal, Manager of the local LIC branch, declined to comment on the protest by the development officers by stating that he was not authorised to comment on it. It is learnt that the local branch has just 2,400 ft covered area whereas it requires about 5,000 sq ft.


Rajindra hospital docs strike work
Our Correspondent

Patiala, January 14
The functioning of Government Rajindra Hospital here was thrown out of gear with doctors keeping away from the out-patient departments (OPDs) and not conducting routine operations in support of the striking Amritsar doctors.

Protesting against the arrest of Dr O.P. Mahajan, Principal, Government Medical College, Amritsar, in the alleged kidney scam, striking doctors, aligned with the Punjab State Medical and Dental Teachers Association, which is headed by Dr Kiranjeet Kaur, said Dr Mahajan was arrested without any “permission” from the Health Minister or the Director, Medical Education.

They demanded a CBI probe into the case. Hundreds of patients could be seen in the hospital complex waiting for medical facilities to resume. The doctors also held a rally in front of the Principal’s office and later went on a pen-down strike.


Schedule for revision of electoral rolls
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 14
Mr C.L. Bains, Election Commissioner, Punjab, today released the schedule for revision of electoral rolls of gram panchayats, block samitis and zila parishads.

In a letter written to all Deputy Commissioners, Mr Bains has stated that since the elections to gram panchayats will be held before June, the electoral rolls should be revised for this purpose.

These rolls will be prepared by house-to-house enumeration from February 3 to February 20. Draft electoral rolls will be prepared from February 21 to March 7. The Publication of draft rolls will be made on March 12 and the last date for filing claims and objections will be March 21. Final publication of rolls will be by April 10.


Punjab shifts four police officers
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 14
The Punjab Government today ordered the transfer of four police officers.

Mr V.K. Bhawra, who has been reverted to the state on completion of his deputation with the Centre, has been posted as DIG (intelligence).

Mr Harjit Singh Pannu has been posted as SP (Detective) at Moga and Mr Ashok Kumar has been sent to Jalandhar as Assistant Commandant, 75th PAP Battalion.

Mr Narinder Singh has been posted as Assistant Commander of the IRB at Ludhiana.


New Assistant Commissioner
Our Correspondent

Mansa, January 14
Mr Sukhmander Singh joined as Assistant Commissioner (Grievances) here today. The post fell vacant following the suspension of Mr Arvinder Paul Singh Sandhu, son-in-law of former Senior Superintendent of Police Ferozepore Gurcharan Singh Pherurai facing graft charges. Earlier Mr Sukhmander Singh was Sub-Divisional Magistrate at Jalalabad (West) in Ferozepore district wherefrom he was transferred to Mansa.


Patwari suspended
Our Correspondent

Mansa, January 14
Mr S.K. Ahluwalia Deputy Commissioner, has placed Gurtej Singh, patwari, and Jagroop Singh, kanungo, under suspension.

Mr Ahluwalia has also ordered disciplinary action against Budhlada naib tehsildar Sandhura Singh. Giving this information here today, the Deputy Commissioner said he had ordered the registration of a criminal case against Ruse Singh Lamberdar, Surjit Kaur, Kaka Singh, Harmit Singh and Paramjit Singh, residents of Dalelwala village in the district. They had shown Partapo, alias Partap Kaur, wife of Gurbax Singh, to be dead. The mutation of her inheritance had been entered and sanctioned to grab her land while she was alive.

The action had been taken on the complaint of Mr Harchand Singh branch secretary of the CPI, the Deputy Commissioner added. The kanungo was in jail in connection with a case registered against him on October 13, 2002. 


1 killed, 39 hurt in road mishap
Our Correspondent

Gurdaspur, January 14
One person was killed and 39 were injured when a bus coming from Amritsar collided with a truck coming from the opposite direction near Japuwal on the G.T. Road, 5 km from here, today. The deceased has been identified as Surjeet Singh, the driver of the truck and resident of Deriwal in Pathankot.

After the accident, Mr J.P. Singh, SDM, Dr Ajaib Singh Sandhu, Civil Surgeon, Dr Gurcharan Singh, Deputy Medical Commissioner and Sub-Inspector Bachittar Singh, SHO, Sadar police station, reached the spot and with the help of local residents, shifted the injured to the Civil Hospital here.

Twentyseven injured were discharged after giving them first-aid whereas 12 injured were admitted to the Civil Hospital here.

The cause behind the accident is said to be dense fog. The driver of the bus has been arrested and both vehicles involved in the accident have been impounded by the police.


Robbers strike at two places
Our Correspondent

Patiala, January 14
Robbers struck at two places in the city since last night, looting a house and making a bid to rob a bank.

According to police, robbers decamped with more than Rs 1 lakh in gold and cash from the residence of Mr Naresh Kumar Sharma in Deshmesh Nagar area in the city. According to the FIR registered in Tripri chowki, the robbers struck at the house when the family had gone to work.

The police said when Mr Sharma returned home in the afternoon, he found the locks broken. He said the robbers had ransacked the house.

Meanwhile, sources said robbers made a bid to rob the Punjab National Bank branch in the Model Town area. According to sources, the robbers broke open the window grill and entered the bank, but a chowkidar raised alarm following which they fled.


1 held with fake passport
Our Correspondent

Amritsar, January 14
The district police today arrested Amarjit Singh of Kapurthala district for allegedly possessing a fake passport.

Mr Sunil Ranjan, Immigration Officer at Raja Sansi Airport, in a complaint lodged at Raja Sansi police station, alleged that the passport of Amarjit Singh was found fake. He was to board an Uzbekistan flight for Canada. A case has been registered under Sections 419, 420, 468, 471 and 120-B of the IPC.

Meanwhile, the police have booked two persons of New Delhi, Sanjay and his father Lok Nath, for allegedly defrauding a mill owner Mr Girish Bhatia of Rs 1 lakh.


UK delegation visits varsity

Amritsar, January 14
A four-member delegation of the British Parliament led by Mr Stephen Pound visited Guru Nanak Dev University here today and had an interaction on higher education and political systems in India and England with Dr Satinder Singh, Pro-Vice-Chancellor and senior faculty members.

Mr Pound, while discussing higher education in the UK said the British Government was always encouraging genuine immigrants for higher studies. He cautioned students not to be misled by agents or middlemen to get admissions to various educational institutions in the UK.

Earlier, Dr Satinder Singh, while welcoming the delegation, focused on the achievements of the university in the field of academics, sports and culture.

He told the delegation that the University had recently established a centre for immigration studies. It would undertake research on the life and social status of Indian immigrants in various countries. He said the university would organise an international seminar on “Immigrant writers, literature, writing and challenges” on January 18 and 19.

The Pro-Vice-Chancellor presented sets of university publications to each member of the delegation.

Earlier, Mr Clarke along with Mr Stephen Pound and Mr Tom Watson — all MPs visited the Golden Temple and Jallianwala Bagh. They also witnessed beating the retreat ceremony at Wagah joint check post. UNI

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 |