Friday, February 14, 2003, Chandigarh, India

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Transparency Act on anvil
Chandigarh, February 13
In pursuance to the Congress’ poll commitment of ‘’transparency’’ in all government business, a ‘’Punjab Transparency in Public Procurement Act, 2003’’ is on the anvil. The Act was reviewed today by the Chief Secretary, Mr Y. S. Ratra. It is being fine-tuned in the light of suggestions made at the meeting, it is reliably learnt.

Class XII exams from March 5
SAS Nagar, February 13
The Class XII examination of the Punjab School Education Board will start on March 5 with the Maths examination for all groups scheduled for the first day. Students from the humanities group will appear in the Business Organisation and Management examination on March 6. On March 7, students of all groups will appear in General English.

Calendar: consensus eludes Sikh scholars
Amritsar, February 13
The 11-member sub-committee on Nanakshahi calendar, which met at the Akal Takht secretariat here today, said the Panth would continue to celebrate Divali and other common festivals of the Hindus and the Sikhs on previous dates till a consensus was reached.

SGPC Directorate of Education to be set up
Chandigarh, February 13
With a view to streamlining education in the Sikh educational institutes and also with the aim of giving autonomous character to SGPC-run schools and colleges, the SGPC has decided to set up a Directorate of Education at Chandigarh.




Badungar seeks CM’s intervention
Phagwara, February 13
The SGPC President, Prof Kirpal Singh Badungar, has sought the intervention of the Chief Minister, Capt Amarinder Singh, for rescinding the anti-Punjabi language decisions taken recently by the Syndicate of Punjabi University, Patiala. Talking to newsmen here today, he said he had also spoken to the Education Minister, Mr Khushhal Behal, about the issue.

CM’s nod to ganda nullah project
Amritsar, February 13
After PUDA and the local Municipal Corporation had locked horns for nearly a year over the financing of the ganda nullah-project worth crores, the Chief Minister, Capt Amarinder Singh, in a significant move, intervened and overruled objections by PUDA.

Ganda Nallah scheme to cover one of the largest drains to restart in Amritsar. — Photo Rajiv Sharma
Ganda Nallah scheme to cover one of the largest drains to restart

Stocks, dues sour sugar situation
Chandigarh, February 13
Uncleared stocks and unpaid dues have together precipitated the sugar crisis in Punjab. By the end of the current cane-crushing season, the state would have 50 lakh quintals of sugar. The quantum of levy sugar will be 7 lakh quintals. The sugar mills owe to the farmers over Rs 130 crore, as on January 31. The share of 14 cooperative sugar mills is Rs 56 crore.


SHSAD not to contest civic poll on party symbol
Phagwara, February 13
The SHSAD may have an electoral understanding with the Bhujan Samaj Party for the March municipal poll and will also have local-level adjustments.


Police remand for Thandal’s 2 ‘touts’
Kharar, February 13
Mrs Preeti Sahni, Judicial Magistrate, Kharar, today remanded two alleged touts of a former Akali minister, Mr Sohan Singh Thandal, who is already in judicial custody, in police custody till tomorrow. The touts, Charan Dass, a resident of Bharowal, village and Karnail Singh, a resident of Garshankar, were arrested by the Punjab. Vigilance Bureau on corruption charges.

Punjabi ambience for Crafts Mela
Patiala, February13
With preparations in full swing for the Patiala Heritage Festival, the district administration is leaving no stone unturned to ascertain that the venues where different items of the festival are scheduled to be held, also contribute to the aesthetic whole of the festival.

A view of the preparations for the Crafts Mela to be put up in the Sheesh Mahal complex in Patiala. — Photo by Subhash Patialavi.
A view of the preparations for the Crafts Mela

Tent city coming up
Patiala, February 13
Rajasthani men saying "hukum" at every wish and command of a guest is likely to become a reality with the setting up of Swiss Cottage tents of the Maharaja of Jodhpur on two islands of the dried-up lake at the back of the Old Moti Bagh Palace.

Sale of spirit for drinking not new
Patiala, February 13
Deaths of 12 persons brought the use of spirit as an intoxicant into focus today. Use of methylated spirit for drinking by under-privileged is not new in the city. It has been going for a long time and tragedy of lower scale occurred in 1997 when four persons died after the consumption of the killer drink. Twelve persons in three different localities of the city last night are the latest victims of “Bhakra da Pani”.

President to visit Punjab on March 23
Chandigarh, February 13
The Punjab Government has started making preparations for the visit of the President, Mr A.P.J. Abdul Kalam. Informed official sources told The Tribune today that the President’s office has confirmed the visit of Mr Kalam to the state on March 23, the martyrdom day of Shaheed Bhagat Singh. The President is scheduled to visit the Golden Temple and Khatkar Kalan, the native village of Shaheed Bhagat Singh, it is learnt.

With the growing popularity of Punjabi music, children too attach themselves to it in a wholehearted way.
In video (28k, 56k)

HC withdraws work from judge
Kapurthala, February 13
The Punjab and Haryana High Court has withdrawn judicial work from Mr A.L. Khichi, Civil Judge (Senior Division). The decision was conveyed to members of the District Bar Association in an order issued today by Mr Gurdev Singh, District and Sessions Judge, entrusting the judicial work of the court of Mr A.L. Khichi to the court of Mr S.S. Dhaliwal, Additional Civil Judge, (Senior Division).

Kidney case: notice of motion issued
Chandigarh, February 13
In less than a month after the great kidney conspiracy was unearthed, the Punjab and Haryana High Court today issued notice of motion for March 12 on a petition filed by Dr Parveen Sareen seeking the quashing of a first information report under Section 302 of the Indian Penal Code.

Poets lament hypocrisy, alienation
Phagwara, February 13
Hypocrisy in relations, sense of isolation and alienation, communalism, the Delhi riots and Godhra killings need for religious tolerance, brotherhood, emergence of new feminine identity and urgency to fight forces of darkness and enlightenment were major themes that dominated “kavi darbar” held at local Guru Nanak College today.

BKU (E) activists gherao bank
Bathinda, February 13
Activists of the Bharatiya Kisan Union (Ekta) today gheraoed Primary Agriculture Development Bank here and alleged that even as the Chief Minister had promised that no farmer would be arrested for defaulting agriculture loans, the bank authorities were despatching a warrant orders against farmers.

Star Cool told to pay compensation
Ropar, February 13
The District Consumer Forum here has directed Star Cool, an Ambala firm to pay compensation to Mangat Ram of Chamkaur Sahib in Ropar district. Mangat Ram had alleged that he purchased a display counter from Star Cool for his shop for Rs 58240, but the counter stopped working just one day after the installation as its refrigeration system failed to work.

Cable TV owners rivalry intensifies
Amritsar, February 13
Two rival groups of cable TV owners in the city have filed several cases against each other in the last week. Siti cable group, a subsidiary of Zee Telefilms, has been under attack from rivals.

CRPF jawan cremated with honours
Moga, February 13
Constable Gurmeet Singh (31) of 22 Battalion of the CRPF, who laid down his life while fighting against militants in Jharkhand on February 10, was cremated with full honours at his native village, Kanwanka Pattan, today.

CPI protest against ‘police repression’
Jalandhar, February 13
Hundreds of activists of the CPI today staged a demonstration here in protest against increasing “police repression, custodial deaths and atrocities on Dalits in the state”.

IAS officers meet
Chandigarh, February 13
The executive of the Punjab IAS Officers Association met here today to discuss the issue of suspended Deputy Commissioner of Ferozepore, Mr D.K. Tiwari. The association has not come out with any official statement with regard to the meeting.


AOs hold meeting at Ludhiana
Chandigarh, February 13
A meeting of the Agriculture Officers Association, Punjab, was held at PAU Ludhiana today under the Presidentship of Dr B.S. Sohal, Chief Agricultural Officer, Patiala.


Probe into co-option of bank directors
Bathinda, February 13
The Registrar, Cooperative Societies, Punjab Government, has ordered an inquiry into the alleged irregularities committed by the authorities concerned while co-opting two directors of the Bathinda Primary Cooperative Agriculture Development Bank, here, under political influence during the previous SAD-BJP regime in the state.

Naib Tehsildar suspended
Mansa, February 13
Mr Dharam Vir, Commissioner, Faridkot division, has placed Mr Gurpreet Mohinder
Singh Chahal, Naib Tehsildar, Sardulgarh, under suspension with immediate effect through an order. The copy of the said orders reached here today. Mr Chahal will draw a subsistence allowance during the suspension period as admissible under Rule 7.2 of the Punjab Civil Services Rule Volume-I Part I. His headquarters during the period of suspension will be the office of the Deputy Commissioner, Mansa.

Jalandhar police chief shifted
Chandigarh, February 13
Besides ordering the transfer of three other IPS officers, the Punjab Government today also transferred the district police chief of Jalandhar and Gurdaspur, respectively.

Rs 5.47 crore for development
Sangrur, February 13
A sum of Rs 5.47 crore was released for development work and welfare schemes in the district at a meeting of the District Planning and Development Board held under the presidentship of Mr Avtar Henry, Punjab Industry Minister and chairman of the board, here today.


Two held for smuggling
Faridkot, February 15
The police nabbed two persons on the Faridkot-Talwandi road near the canal yesterday and recovered 115 gm smacks from them. They have been identified as Major Singh alias Pargat Singh son of Balwinder Singh alias Bahal Singh of Kler village in Tarn Taran police district and Sunil a resident of Meerut in Uttar Pradesh. A case under Section 21/61/85 of the NDPS Act has been registered against them.

1 more held in church land scam
Gurdaspur, February 13
Mr Varinder Kumar, SSP, said today that the police had arrested Sanjiv Kumar, alias Samual Masih, alias Semi, a resident of Amritsar, for his alleged involvement in the multi-crore church land scam at Madhopur in Pathankot subdivision in the district. A case under Sections 420, 467, 468, 471 and 120-B of the IPC was registered on January 11 in this regard.

700 kg poppy husk seized
Phagwara, February 13
The police has seized 700 kg of poppy husk, worth Rs 5 lakh, from Manga and his sister-in-law Tarsem, residents of Kirpal Pur colony. A press note issued by DSP Harmanbir Singh Gill today said the two were retailers of poppy husk and had brought a truck load from Rajasthan.

6 inmates injured in clash
Amritsar, February 13
Six inmates of the Central Jail were injured in a clash between two groups inside the prison complex here today.


Nod to degree courses in polytechnics
Bathinda, February 13
The Punjab Government today gave formal approval to run degree engineering courses in its seven polytechnic colleges in the state from the next academic session to make them financially viable and to generate an additional, 4,500 seats of diploma and degree courses in these institutions.

IT festivals at DAV College
Amritsar, February 13
To create awareness about various computer programmes amongst the youth, the local DAV College organised state-level IT festivals ‘netwest’, ‘skillfest’ and ‘e-fest’ here yesterday.


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