Thursday, January 23, 2003, Chandigarh, India

National Capital Region--Delhi


R E G I O N A L   B R I E F S

  • Board colony begs attention
  • How to utilise “congress grass”
  • In the service  of poor

DOOR-TO-DOOR CHECK UP: A team of specialised veterinary doctors from Punjab Agriculture University, Ludhiana, and Cattle Health Organisation, Jalandhar, made a door-to-door check-up of foot and mouth disease at Tibbi village near here on Tuesday. They have taken blood and saliva samples of some cattle for analysis. Among others, the Deputy Director, Mr Ramesh Chand Punj, senior veterinary officer Ramesh Chand Jaluria, veterinary officers Ranbir Sharma, Amrik Singh and Mr Jatinder Kumar and veterinary pharmacists accompanied the teams.

ELECTIONS: The election of chairman and vice-chairman of Amloh block samiti will be held on January 28 at 11 am in the office of the Block Development and Panchayat Officer (BDPO), said Mr Amarjeet Singh Shahi, SDM-cum-Returning Officer, while talking to the media persons here on Wednesday. Each member elected from 15 zones of the block and MLA of the constituency, who has also right to vote, will elect the chairman and the vice-chairman through ballot paper if there is no unanimity. The elected members of the samiti had already been administered oath in a function at Patiala. The SDM further said that the seats of chairman and vice-chairman were reserved for the Scheduled Caste and woman candidates, respectively.

ARMY RECRUITMENT: A recruitment rally of the Army will be held here on January 27 and 28. An official press note issued here said the recruitment of Ramdasia and Mazhabi Sikhs would be considered. The recruitment rally at Mansa would be held on January 30 and 31, at Sangrur on February 3 and 4 and at Malout on February 5.

PSEB STAFF RALLY: Employees of Punjab State Electricity Board on Tuesday staged a rally near the office of Zonal Engineer (Western) in the city to show resentment against the formation of corporations in place of the PSEB. The members of the GND Thermal Plant Employees Federation, PSEB Labourers Sangh and the PSEB Employees Front participated.

TRIBUTES: Tributes were paid to Sukhdev Kaushal, a former president, Bar Association Kharar, in a ‘shradhanjli samagam’ organised at Shri Ram Bhavan, here on Tuesday. A large number of prominent persons, including lawyers from Kharar, Ropar and Chandigarh, were present.

GRANT: Mr G.S. Tohra, MP, Rajya Sabha, has given Rs 50,000 for the construction of Shri Ram Bhavan, a community centre, here. This was announced by Mr Rajbir Singh Padiala, vice-president, SHSAD, on Tuesday.

CHEATED: Two Sikh youths took away many utensils from Gurdwara Sahib Singh Sabha, Mundi Kharar, on January 18 by giving fake address. The police has been informed.

AWARDED: Prominent Sikh writer, Dr Sarup Singh Alag, Chairman, Alag Shabad Yug Trust, Ludhiana, has been awarded a D.Litt degree by an American university for his outstanding achievement in literature. Dr Alag is the author of 42 books in Punjabi, English and Hindi. Three years ago, he was awarded a Ph.D. by a Washington-based university on his thesis on Guru Granth Sahib. 

QUIZ CONTEST: The Vth Punjab state-level maths quiz was organised by Castle Education Centre in November. About 900 students from Ludhiana appeared for the written quiz. The result of declared recently and Sameer Jain of Kundan Vidya Mandir was adjudged Expert-2002. “This is another outstanding achievement in the field of maths,” said the Principal, Ms Neena Khanna. Along with Sameer Jain, 13 other students of the school will be awarded merit certification on February 1, 2003, by the Castle organisation at the Ludhiana Club.

FUNCTION: A student of Shanti Tara College, Gurvinder Singh, of B.A. (III) won the first prize in folk singing at the contest organised by the Cultural section of the Punjab Government. The function was held at Government Ranvir College, Sangrur, out of 60 participants Gurvinder Singh was declared the winner. He received a gold medal and a cash of Rs 5100.

NSS CAMP ENDS: A 10-day NSS camp organised by the Institute of Management Studies (IMS) concluded on Tuesday. Mr H.S. Gill, SE (retd), Border Roads Organisation, was the chief guest. The chief guest in his address emphasised the importance of conservation of water. He said that people of Punjab were fortunate to have an abundant supply of potable water and informed the audience about the plight of the people in the NW borders where the water was scarce. Col H.S. Singha, Director, IMS, in his concluding address congratulated the participants for the good work done by them.

LAND POSSESSION: In the campaign launched by the Forest Department, the department officials of Samrala range who had come to nearby Mand Jodhwal village to take possession of the land from Nachhattar Singh, a poor labourer, did an act of inhumanity by killing his goat apart from demolishing his hut. The Range Officer, Samrala, Mr Swarn Chand, who was assigned the duty of deserting the poor farmer, was accompanied by a large number of forest guards and cops. Alongwith Nachhattar’s hut, his shed for animals was also destroyed.

GANG BUSTED: The Bareta police has busted a gang of robbers by arresting six persons — Gurpreet Singh, alias Guru, and Buta Singh of Bahadurpur village, Geeta Singh and Jasbir Singh of Mal Singh Wala village, Sukhpal Singh of Daryapur village and Pargat Singh of Khadal Kalan village in the district. They had looted a vend of country-made liquor at Sirsiwla village in the district a few days ago. One member of the gang, Gora Singh of Khadal Kalan village, managed to escape.

POPPY HUSK SEIZED: The Jhunir police has seized 275 kg of poppy husk from an inter-state gang of smugglers. The police has arrested Jang Singh, alias Janga, Kuldeep Singh, alias Bhinder, and Mukhtiar Singh Mehra, all residents of Harian Patti Rori in Sirsa district. A case under Section 15/61/85 of the NDPS Act has been registered.

NEW ADC: Mr Kulwant Singh, a PCS officer of the 1981 batch joined here as the Additional Deputy Commissioner on Wednesday in place of Mr Mohinder Singh Kainth, who relinquished charge on Monday.

WOMAN KILLED: An unidentified woman died near the railway station after she fell off the running Bathinda-Delhi Express train. The body of the deceased was sent to the Civil Hospital for a post-mortem examination. In another incident, Makhan Lal (35) of Budhlada in the district allegedly committed suicide by consuming poison.

ELECTED: Mr Naresh Gupta of Esgi Tools and Mr Vikram Goel of H-Tech Tools Industries have been elected president and general secretary, respectively, of the Patiala Industries Association. Mr Ashwani Garg has been elected vice-president; Mr Rakesh Goel — finance secretary; and Mr Paramjit Singh — joint secretary.

BLOOD DONATION: As many as 50 volunteers of the Army Institute of Law donated blood at the Inter-College Blood Donation Camp organised by the NSS Department of Punjabi University, Patiala, at the Health Care Centre on Tuesday, according to the college Principal, Dr G.I.S. Sandhu.

OFFICE-BEARERS: Mr Jyoti Parshad Goyal has been elected president of the Dhillon Colony Welfare Association. The other office-bearers are: Dr R.K. Garg — patron; Mr Harinder Pal Singh — chairman; Mr Chhotu Ram Gehlot — senior vice-president; and Mr Pawan Goyal — secretary.

‘RELEASE SALARIES’: The regular government school teachers, who are working under the Operation Black Board Scheme, are not paid their salaries for the past seven months. Teachers working under this scheme have requested the Punjab education authorities to end this scheme which never worked and turn their costs to regular teachers. They have requested the authorities to release their salaries as early as possible.

LEKHAK MANCH: The local Panjabi Lekhak Manch will honour famous Panjabi Novelist Om Parkash Gasso and will hold Ru-bu-ru with him on February 6 at 10 a.m. on the local Government Senior Secondary School premises, according to Professor Hamdardvir Nausheharvi. A Kavi darbar will also be held, he added.



CAMP: As many as 208 volunteers donated blood at a camp organised by DAV College, Sector 10, in collaboration with the Lions Club Chandigarh Central on the college premises here on Wednesday. The camp was inaugurated by a noted social worker, Ms Bonny Sodhi. About 50 students from Manav Mangal School, Sector 21, also came to witness the camp. Mementoes were also given to every participant.



POLICY: The Youth Affairs and Sports Ministry will soon announce a new youth policy in order to strengthen the NSS, Nehru Yuva Kendra, NCC and other adventurous organisations. It was stated by Mr L.M. Mehta, Secretary, Youth Affairs and Sports, Government of India, here on Wednesday. He was presiding over a convocation function of Dev Samaj Girls College, Ambala City. He said the Union Government had decided to establish a National Sports Development Fund to encourage the games. He said the Centre had also decided to establish Regional Sports Training Centre at Sonepat at the cost of Rs 21 crore in 100 acres of land.

OPPOSED: The Nagar Sudhar Sabha of Mahesh Nagar, West and Main, have decided to oppose the hike in cable connection charges. Mr N.D. Arora, secretary-general of the Federation of Welfare Societies, said at a meeting held on Wednesday residents had not only decided to surrender their cable connections if there is any further hike, they would not allow the cable wires to pass over their rooftops. The sabhas have demanded action against cable operators through the Income Tax Department. Among others, Mr I.J. Dhawan, Ms Neelam Sharma, Mr Jasbir Singh Jassi and Mr S.D. Gupta were present, among others.

MEETING: A meeting of the Ambala unit of the All-India Anti-Terrorist Front was held under the presidentship of Mr Varinder Kapoor on Tuesday. While addressing the meeting, Mr Kapoor said each member of the front should be prepared to make sacrifices in order to ensure that terrorism is wiped out. He said the front activists would extend full cooperation to the district administration in times of need.

POLICE REMAND: The Sub-Divisional Magistrate, Mr Mewa Singh, sent the organiser of a lottery scheme to one day’s police remand on Tuesday. The police had registered a case against Umesh Singh of Dhanger village under Sections 406, 420 and 34 of the IPC. Mr Tara Chand of Bighar village had lodged a complaint with the police in this regard.

WOMAN KILLED: A woman was killed and her daughter seriously injured in a road accident at the Mall Road here on Tuesday. The injured was admitted to a private hospital here. Rajendera Devi and her daughter Bindu were passing through the Mall Road on a moped when a truck allegedly hit their vehicle from behind. Rajendra Devi died on the spot. The truck driver fled the spot. A case has been registered.

BODY FOUND: The body of Dinesh (18) was found near the railway junction area. Dinesh had taken Rs 1.63 lakh from his house on Monday. The money was missing. The police has registered a case under Section 302 of the IPC on the complaint of the father of the deceased.

2 SMUGGLERS HELD: The district police has arrested two smugglers and recovered from them 10 kg of opium worth lakh of rupees. Giving this information here on Monday, the district police chief, Mr A.S. Ahalawat, said the persons had been identified as Kishan Lal of Bhilwara, Rajasthan, and Puran Singh of Chitorgarh. A case under Section 17/18/61 and 85 of the Narcotic Trafficking Act and 120-B of the IPC had been registered against them.



PENSIONERS’ PLEA: The Elder Citizens Association, here on Monday at the annual general house urged all retired employees of the state to get united and create circumstances for acceptance of their demand of incentive on pension after 65 and 75 years.

PLANTATION DRIVE: Saplings were planted in the complex of age-old historic Suhi Mata Temple in the town on Monday. Earlier, a plantation rally was held which was flagged off from the local Circuit House and passed through the main bazars to reach the Suhi Mata Temple complex. The rally was attended by school students, officers and members of the association. The campaign was carried out in coordination with the Forest Department and the local administration.

BURNT ALIVE: One person was burnt alive and six kiosks were reduced to ashes in a devastating fire at Sarkaghat, near here, on Tuesday. An office of the Agriculture Department was also damaged in fire. The deceased has been identified as Girja Ram (56). The police has handed over the body to relatives of the deceased after a postmortem examination.



Board colony begs attention

The Bindravan Housing Board Colony near Palampur set up about six years ago is in bad shape. It seems that after setting up this colony the H.P. Housing Board has forgotten to take care of it. Potholed roads and streets, poor sanitation, overflowing drains tell the tale of this locality.

Almost all internal roads of this colony are in bad shape. Fresh carpeting of roads has not been done despite an assurance by the Chief Executive Officer of the board to the welfare association of the colony. The drainage of the colony is defective. Due to the overflowing of drains in the rainy season, water collects at many places. The poor drainage is also damaging houses and sewerage of the colony. The drains provided behind the row of house No. 55 to No. 59 have not been repaired, resulting in cracks in some houses. Heaps of garbage can be seen at many places, emitting a foul smell. The garbage bins laid by the authorities are without covers which makes monkeys scatter the garbage here and there. The maintenance of parks leaves much to be desired. There is thick growth of wild grass in all parks. In the absence of shutters at the entry gates, animals have a field day in these parks.

There are no streetlights at the entrance to the colony. More than 50 per cent lights of the colony remain off as no one in the Housing Board has bothered to repair these, causing great inconvenience to the residents.

Major G.R. Kalotra, secretary of the Welfare Association, says even though the H.P. Housing Board is regularly charging maintenance charges from the members, nothing is spent on maintenance. He threatened to move the Consumer Protection Forum for claiming damages if immediate steps are not taken by the board to improve the situation.

How to utilise “congress grass”

Jatinder Tiwari and Neeraj Dhiman, both teachers of Hoshiarpur, have devoted themselves wholeheartedly to control the growth of “water hyacinth” and “congress grass” and find industrial utility for these harmful weeds. Water hyacinths grow over a variety of wetlands like lakes, streams, ponds, waterways, ditches and backwater areas. Water hyacinths attain their nutrients directly from water and mud. These grow on the surface of water making a dense mat. Their dense mat prevents sunlight from passing into water. In the absence of sunlight, other aquatic plants of that area die, causing deficiency of oxygen that makes aquatic animals die. Its thick mat causes navigational problems for ships, boats, steamers etc. It upsets the irrigation system and generation of hydel power.

Another most devastating weed is “congress grass” (parthenium). It has spread all over India. This weed, first sighted near Pune in 1956, has become the main cause of asthma and skin diseases. As per a report by a team of PGI doctors, 61 per cent of the skin allergy cases are due to this weed. “Root out congress grass” expeditions have been taken up many times in Chandigarh and Punjab but to no avail.

Both these teachers have invented a technique of manufacturing best-quality “card board” and “handmade paper” from these weeds. Their efforts would prove useful for the best utilisation of these weeds, besides safeguarding the health of the citizens.

In the service of poor

The Hans Khadi Gram Udyog Samiti has been awarded the Red and White bravery award for its efforts to raise the living standard of the weaker and deprived sections of society. It is one of the few voluntary organisations which run income-generating and awareness programmes for the downtrodden. The samiti was awarded a gold medal and Rs 15000 in cash by Mr Partap Singh Bajwa, PWD Minister, Punjab, at Hotel Mountview, Chandigarh, recently.

The Karnal-based samiti runs programmes on AIDS, family planning, environment cleanliness, crafts and handloom weaving, consumer awareness, construction of low-cost toilets etc for the rural poor.

The samiti claims to have trained about 3200 men and women in handloom weaving, computer education, tailoring and cutting etc with a view to making them self-dependent. It also runs non-formal education programmes in 54 villages of Gharaunda block of Karnal district. It has helped 2600 children to join schools.

The samiti has also built 100 ‘Sulabh’ toilets for the rural poor. The samiti is currently running a cutting and tailoring centre in Budha Khera, a handloom weaving centre in Kalweri village in which near about 100 women and girls are taking vocational training.

Contributed by Ravinder Sood, Narinder Mohan Sharma and K.G. Dutt


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