Monday, March 10, 2003, Chandigarh, India


C H A N D I G A R H   S T O R I E S


Violence, cane charge mark civic poll
Bipin Bhardwaj

Dera Bassi, March 9
Violence marked the Dera Bassi Municipal Council poll in which four persons were injured, one of them seriously, here today.
Tension brewed in different wards during the polling process following allegations and counter allegations levelled by candidates and their supporters. The police had to resort to mild cane charge to disperse the mob.

At Ward No. 13, some Congress supporters attacked a voter, Babu Ram, alleging him to be a fake voter. They attacked him with lathis, which resulted in serious injuries to his head and left hand. In the attack, three others — Ms Kiran Bala, Mr Sat Pal, and Prince — also sustained injuries. Babu Ram was later taken to the Dera Bassi Civil Hospital.

The police had to resort to mild cane charge after tension mounted between the supporters of candidates belonging to the Congress and the SAD at booth no. 11, which had been declared super sensitive.

Heated arguments were exchanged among Mr Amrit Pal Singh, a Congress candidate and president of the Block Congress Committee, and Mr Jagjit Singh Dalli, an SAD candidate and president of the civic body.

Supporters of both the parties alleged fake polling on large scale at these polling booths.

Heavy police deployment was seen at booth nos. 11 and 13 where senior police officials along with senior political leaders camped throughout the day. Sources in the police said the government had directed senior police officials to keep a close watch at these booths.

Supporters of both the candidates also raised slogans against each other but no untoward incident was reported.

Various fake voters were detained by the police. They were later let off after questioning. Heated arguments were exchanged among two groups supporting contesting candidates over bogus voting.

The Returning Officer, Mr Amarjit Singh Dhindsa, SDM, Dera Bassi, and election supervisory staff also visited various polling booths to check rigging.

When asked about the violence and cane charge, Mr Dhindsa said no such case was reported to him. Meanwhile, Mr Balwinder Singh, DSP, clarified that irate mob had to be dispersed by the police to bring the situation under control. He however, denied cane charge by the police.

As per official reports 82 per cent votes were polled during the election.

KHARAR: Confusion while announcing the result of Ward No. 1 resulted in a traffic blockade on the national Highway 21 (the Kharar-Chandigarh road) from 6 pm till the filing of this report. Members of the bangala community sat on a dharna demanding that their supported candidate Satya Devi should be declared winner or re-polling ordered.

The police said protesters pelted stones on police vehicles. However, protesters alleged that the police lathi charged them and fired in the air.

Tarlochan Singh Rana, a CPM leader, said Duda was wounded and rushed to the civil hospital.



5 booked in illicit relations case
Tribune News Service

SAS Nagar, March 9
The police has booked five persons on the charge of having illicit relations with a girl, claiming to be a minor, who delivered a child in the PGI on March 1.
The case was referred to the SAS Nagar police by the PGI police post through Naya Gaon, after the latter were informed of the age of the girl by the hospital authorities. The local police has now registered a case under Sections 376 and 34 of the IPC, based on the statement given by the girl at the PGI police post.

According to the FIR, the girl told the UT police that she had physical relationship with at least five persons and the father of the child could be a resident of Naya Gaon. The girl also named four other persons in her statement, two of which are residents of Karoran village.

Police sources said although the case registered against the five was of rape, the relations they had with the girl were most likely a result of mutual consent. Her statement also mentions that she had undergone an abortion.

The Superintendent of Police, Mr Harcharan Singh Bhullar, said the FIR had been lodged on the statement the girl had given to the UT police but it would carry out its own investigations. “We went looking for the girl at her residence but she was not found. We will also ascertain if the girl is a minor or not.” he said.

The FIR also states that the girl just appeared for her Class VIII examinations from a government middle school in Chandigarh and lives with her mother and brother at Khuda Alisher. The girl came to the PGI for her delivery when she realised that she was carrying a child. Interestingly, according to her statement, she realised that she was going to have a child only a day before delivery. The police informed that her child had been handed over to the Missionaries of Charity.



PU Syndicate to take up Randhawa, Rathore cases
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 9
The reply of Dr Surjit Singh Randhawa, Principal of the SGGS Khalsa College, Mahilpur, to the show-cause notice served on him regarding an alleged fraud committed by him in changing his date of birth, the report on irregularities in the accounts of the Panjab University’s Department of Sports, the case concerning the issuance of a show-cause notice to Mr J.S. Rathore, lecturer in commerce in the Department of Correspondence Studies and initiation of disciplinary action against him are among the major issues to be debated upon during the university’s syndicate meeting, scheduled to be held on March 15.

The recent faculty appointments made in the University Institute of Engineering and Technology and the Department of Bio-technology will also come up for consideration, in addition to the conformation of promotions recommended by the Vice-Chancellor.

The minutes of the university’s Board of Finance, which had approved the university’s budget for the 2003-04 financial year, will also be placed before the Syndicate for consideration.

A resolution has also been mooted that various chairs of excellence instituted in the university be merged in their respective departments for the purpose of economic and efficient use of human resources and other budgetary provisions attached to the chairs.

A recommendation of the Board of Control in Law that the result of certain students who migrated from Kurukshetra University and admitted to the third semester in the Department of Laws here, be declared by proportionately increasing their marks has also been put up for discussion.

Constitution of independent discipline-wise postgraduate boards of studies in applied art, painting, sculpture and graphics for the Government College of Art as well as a recommendation for instituting a special diploma course in fine arts exclusively for the hearing and speech impaired students will also figure among the deliberations.

The Syndicate will also debate upon the academic calendar of the teaching departments of the university as well as that of the colleges affiliated to it. The feasibility report on a proposal to start an additional optional subject on Introduction to Computer Science in colleges affiliated to the university will also be discussed, in addition to college inspection reports.



Sec 46 phones go on the blink
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 9
If one’s phone goes out of order on Sunday, one can simply curse one’s luck, as Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) has no provision to repair the lines on a holiday.

Though it claims to have improved its customer care services, nothing has changed in the field. Residents of Sector 46 today claimed that around 1,000 phones in the sector and surrounding areas went out of order in the morning. Despite repeated complaints, they said, no official or employee came forward to rectify the fault. Interestingly, since it was a Sunday, no official was aware of the fault, let alone rectifying the fault.

When contacted, Mr S.R. Aggarwal, GM, BSNL, said he was not aware of the incident. Due to a weekly holiday, he said, nothing could be done in this regard and repairs would be undertaken on Monday. He apprehended that the problem might have occurred due to damage to the underground cable. However, he assured that repair work would be undertaken tomorrow.



Sarpanch suspended 
Our Correspondent

Mullanpur Garibdass, March 9
The Department of Rural Development and Panchyat, Punjab has suspended the Sarpanch of Mullanpur-Garibdass village, Deewan Singh, for allegedly embezzling Rs 1.19 lakh and issuing fake no-objection certificates, which led to encroachments at the village.

The fraud was detected during an audit at which on objection was raised by the department concerned.

Meanwhile, a large number of villagers today raised slogans against the Sarpanch and distributed sweets to express happiness over the order. Villagers had been up in arms against the Sarpanch for past couple of years. They had been accusing him of not carrying out development work during his tenure.

The suspension order was issued under Section 2 C (4) of the Punjab Panchyat Raj Act, 1994. The action was taken after the villagers brought the matter to the notice of the Punjab Chief Minister in January.

Earlier, an enquiry was marked following complaints against the Sarpanch by the Punjab Minister for Animal Husbandry, Fishery and Dairy Mr Jagmohan Singh Kang, in April, last year.

A resident of the village, Mr Karnail Singh, accused the sarpanch of facilitating encroachments on village land. Karnail Singh said, “The sarpanch had issued fake NOC’s to several persons which had led to encroachments here.”

‘‘He never used to tell us about the grants sanctioned for the village development’’, alleged former Sarpanch of the village Gurmukh Singh.




“Politician” husbands are now realising their political aspirations through their Councillor wives. The otherwise “happy at home” wives are also only too glad to swap places and be the centre of all attention. With certain wards having been reserved exclusively for women, they have been forced to join politics only because these seats were reserved for women and not men.

The fact became more evident during the oath-taking ceremony of the Councillors held in the Municipal Council office on Friday, when the husbands, and in some cases, their fathers-in-law rushed in and were more than eager to express their views about anything and everything. When this fact was pointed out, the Executive Officer of the Council, Mr O.P. Sihag, had little option but to ask the husbands and fathers-in-law to accompany the women Councillors as their “chauffeurs”, rather than express their own opinions in the House.

It may be noted that of the 31 Councillors elected to the first civic body of Panchkula, 12 women have been elected. Leaving aside a few exceptions, most women have jumped into the political arena because the area of influence of their husbands had been declared a women ward.

Last salute

Dr Ajit Awasthi of the Department of Psychiatry of the PGI was pleasantly surprised when instead of a woman patient her husband turned up at his OPD. He was carrying a letter written by his late wife which she had desired that he himself should hand over to the doctor. The woman patient, who had been suffering from depression, had died some days earlier, because of a cardio-vascular disorder.

In her letter, the woman had conveyed her “gratitude” to the doctor for looking after her so well. Realising that she would not survive the heart attack she suffered early this year, she wrote a personal note and wanted that this should be handed over to the doctor on her next “scheduled appointment with him”.


A local lad studying in a leading Australian university has done the city proud by topping in a course.

The University of Ballarat, Sydney, in a communication has congratulated Ankur Dawar for his excellent result in database systems.

“Your performance stood out clearly above other candidates and demonstrated considerable knowledge and expertise in this subject”, the official communication reads.

Ankur is son of Dr Raj Dawar, lecturer in economics, at Government College, Sector 11. Ankur is a former student of Government Model Senior Secondary School, Sector 10, where he captained the school cricket team.

Tu tu, main main!

Land acquisition of 52 acres in Darshani Bagh in Mani Majra area of the city has sparked off allegations between the BJP and the Congress.

The BJP through its national executive member Satyapal Jain has alleged that the people were getting displaced under the Congress MP Pawan Bansal and the party ruled Municipal Corporation.

The Congress has hit back saying the acquisition of land to be transferred to the Municipal Corporation was done under the Central government headed by the BJP which controls the Chandigarh Administration.

The Leader of the Opposition in Municipal Corporation, Ms Kamla Sharma, even accused Congress Mayor Subhash Chawla of having written a letter to the Chandigarh Administration asking for the acquisition of land under Section 9 of the Land Acquisition Act. Mr Chawla, enraged at the allegation, dared Ms Sharma to produce the letter and urged the BJP to avoid rumour mongering.

No water feature

The photograph on top of the page seems to be depicting a piece of traditional art reflecting a check-dam in a typical rural area that has adopted the idea of watershed management. But if you happen to pass by this site, it would definitely nauseate you.

It is a scene from the city beautiful, captured by our photo journalist Parvesh Chauhan, just opposite CII building near the roundabout of Sector 29.

The overflowing water stinks to high heavens and is a monument of negligence of the sanitation wing of Municipal Corporation.

Real empowerment

For once, there was a sure purpose behind the International Women’s Day function organised by the Child and Woman Support Unit of UT police department on Panjab University. A strong element of sensitivity ran through the three-hour-long function which served to raise questions and provide concrete answers to them. In attendance was an NRI girl from Punjab, who was subjected to unlimited trauma by her NRI husband and in-laws who even went to the extent of hiding her passport to prevent her from coming back to India.

Undoubtedly, she was the real heroine of the day. Right from beginning till the end all eyes remained focused on her and all ears on her inspiring tale of salvation, as she called it. Young, educated and vibrant, she kept talking to the girls present on the function about how important it is to be on the guard all the time. Many GCG-11 students present in the function were seen drawing inspiration from the girl’s tale of endurance.

For once, she became their symbol of women’s empowerment!

Guests en route

Political parties of the Union Territory are relieved after the completion of the Assembly election process in Himachal.

With major leaders of different parties not being employed in elections in a major way, they were left arranging for welcome of their party leaders en-route public meetings in Himachal.

With the campaigning of elections in Himachal generating an unprecedented heat, the Congress and the BJP carpet- bombed the hill state by sending a large number of campaigners.

The local unit of the parties were strained to attend to these leaders either at the railway station or at the airport as most of leaders chose to reach Chandigarh on the way to Shimla.

Patient Ms India

Hats off to Miss India Universe 2003 Nikita Anand, who kept smiling throughout the very long convocation function of the National Institute of Fashion Design at Tagore Theatre on March 4. Expected as it was, the show stretched out a bit too much, with diplomas waiting to be awarded to over hundred students.

But not even once during the two-hour-long schedule did Miss Anand lose her cool. She stood on the stage (even as her escorts took turns) for long and kept flashing that smile of hers every time she awarded a certificate to the NIFD pass-out. Many students from among the crowd were happy to see the patience of Nikita Anand, who was later surrounded for a longer time by fans demanding autographs. After the show was finally over, everyone had one thing to say, “Her endurance will pay off in the Miss Universe pageant.”

Women credit

When most of the institutes in the country organised seminars and workshops to mark the celebration of International Women’s Day, the National Bank for Agricultural and Rural Development (Nabard) committed itself to empowering the rural women economically and socially. Its programme of micro-financing through self help groups (SHGs) has turned out to be the largest micro finance programme of the world, under which more than six lakh SHGs have been given credit worth over Rs 1600 crore.

The bank is working to sensitise other banks to provide adequate credit to women entrepreneurs. For this, it has come up with the innovative schemes, which have been appreciated at the international forums. It has launched programmes like Rural Entrepreneurship Development Programme (REDF), Assistance to Rural Women in Non-Farm Development (ARWIND) aiming at capacity building of rural women.

Fish conservation research

The US Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) of the Department of Interior has commended the conservation research conducted by the Department of Zoology, Panjab University, Chandigarh, on “Ecology of hillstreams of Himachal Pradesh and Garhwal region with special reference to fish communities”.

In a letter written to the Vice-Chancellor, Panjab University, the Chief of the Division of International Conservation, Mr David A. Ferguson, lauded the research conducted by Prof M.S. Johal of the Department of Zoology and his team. It says: “The information gathered will greatly contribute to the scientific knowledge of many fish species and their habitats. There is an urgent need to conduct further research on the restoration of fish habitat, especially in the Himalayan region, which is one of the globally recognised biodiversity hot spots, to conserve the biodiversity”.

Even the Himachal Fishery Department has asked Professor Johal to prepare guidelines for undertaking the restoration of streams to enhance the population of trout, which is an inhabitant of cold regions of Europe.

The Japanese Government has invited two students of the department, Dr Harcharn Singh and Dr Anil Tyor, to discuss further possibilities of implementing the restoration programme of streams and rivers.

Threat to PR agencies

The decision of a national daily to publish promotional stories in the paper ‘‘after taking due payment like the advertising stuff,’’ from clients, has caused much stir among public relations agencies and some “journalists” as well. They are now worried about their business, as they feel that they would become redundant if other papers start following the trend.

The newspaper executive director in a signed article has made it clear that these stories would be given different credit line, so that readers could recognise that they are promotional and paid stories. At a press conference recently, an official of a leading public relation agency, wondered: ‘‘Who would like to hold conferences for product launching and other programmes, if the material could be directly published by making payment.’’ But he hoped that pressmen would also oppose the decision as they would also miss lunches and gifts.

— Sentinel



Plan for curbing carcass menace
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 9
The Municipal Corporation of Chandigarh plans to set up a carcass utilisation centre in the city to dispose of carcasses in a scientific manner, as recommended by a high-powered committee constituted by the Supreme Court on solid waste management.

Disclosing this to TNS here yesterday, Mayor Subash Chawla said the setting up of the centre would help in reducing the nuisance caused due to the lying of carcasses in the open. This would also help in averting air crashes due to bird-hits, he said.

This is a Centrally sponsored scheme of the Ministry of Agriculture with a 100 per cent grant-in-aid. The total cost of the project has been estimated at Rs 3.5 crore and 1.5 acres has been identified for the purpose.

He further said approximately Rs 22 lakh would be needed for the development of land, electrical installations and boundary wall and funds for this would have to be raised by the MC from its own resources. He said two vans would be provided by the Centre, apart from infrastructural cost.

An MC official said 16 additional posts would be required to start this centre during the 10th Five-Year Plan 2002-2007 at an expenditure of Rs 51.95 lakh, out of which Rs 8 lakh would be required during the financial year 2003-04. As per the proposal, the additional posts included two drivers, one plant operator-cum-electrician, eight helpers, one hide-flayer, three workers and one watchman.

Paid parking: Mayor Subash Chawla has declared that all paid parking sites falling within the limits of the MC will be made people-friendly. He held a meeting with the SP (Traffic) recently and discussed the problems arising at parking sites. It had been decided to mark lining at the parking sites with numbers to give an idea of availability of space to park vehicles. The Mayor also ordered members of the Finance and Contracts Committee to visit the paid parking sites at regular intervals to check whether the contractors were working as per MC guidelines.

Protest rally: The Horticulture Workers Union of the Municipal Corporation of Chandigarh will take out a protest rally in Sector 17 on March 18 to press for its demands of filling up all vacant posts, to bring daily-wage workers into work-charge cadre, to bring work-charge staff into regular cadre, 8/16 years’ increment with arrears, uniforms for supervisory staff, gum-boots and ‘barsatis’ for field staff, appointment on compassionate grounds for the work-charge and daily-wage staff.

BJP delegation: A delegation of the Chandigarh unit of the BJP, led by its president Yash Pal Mahajan, met Lt-Gen (retd) J.F.R. Jacob, UT Administrator, and demanded that alternative sites around Chandigarh be allotted to the dairy owners at Attawa, Butrela, Badheri, Burail and Mani Majra who had been served notices by the MC to wind up their business by March 15.



No funds, but malba in plenty 
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 9
The Sector-29 Central Government officers' houses have been facing apathy of the Chandigarh Administration and municipal corporation for the past more than eight years.

The area near the houses of the Director, Khadi Village and Industries Corporation, Assistant Commissioner of the Kendriya Vidyalaya Sangathan (KVS) and Collector, Central Excise, is being used to dump garbage and malba.

When Assistant Commissioner of the KVS D. K. Saini approached the Chandigarh Administration in this regard he was asked to approach the area councillor for getting some funds. Meanwhile, the administration has said it was short of funds for the development and upkeep of the area.

Dismayed at the response of the administration, senior officers of the Central Government took it upon themselves to get some sand from a nearby place to fill the pits and level the area to some extent. Residents here say there is no parking place in the area nor has any development taken place.

Even a link road approved in the development plan has not been made. 



Another Left forum coming up
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 9
A peoples democratic forum is taking shape at the national level. The forum will carry on the class struggle and evolve alternatives to globalisation. In the forefront of the yet another Left organisation is trade unionist V.B. Charian. He was expelled from the Communist Party of India (Marxist) in 1998.

Addressing a press conference here today, Comrade Charian said the opposition of the eminent American war on Iraq had shown the capitalist and colonial world was going ahead with its hegemonistic designs. He said Left parties have not been able to lodge an impressive protest against the us imperialism.

Comrade Charian said independence of mass organisations’ cuts barriers of ideology, caste, creed, community, language and region. Mr Charian has found a supporter in Mangat Ram Pasla and Chander Shekhar both communist leaders of Punjab. These two Punjab leaders will go to Kerala to bring about unity in mass organisation and peoples democratic forum. Mr Pasla said the Communist party of India (Marxist) was trying to fit into power structure instead of carrying out class struggle. 



KKU protest today
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 9
The Punjab unit of the Kirti Kisan Union (KKU) has decided to hold an indefinite dharna at Matka Chowk here from tomorrow. Mr Hardev Singh Sandhu, president of the union, in a press note said the dharna would be held in protest against the increase in fertiliser and pesticide prices in the Budget, and Punjab Government’s decision to impose 4 per cent tax on fertiliser.

He said the government had failed to link the prices of the crops to the price index and the farmers had been burdened with increased electricity rates, irrigation charges and other costs. 



28 members of a gang rounded up 
Tribune News Service

Panchkula, March 9
The police today rounded up 28 members of a gang allegedly involved in land grabbing cases and operating in Pinjore, while they were trying to come to the district courts here. These men, along with 10 more persons, were coming to the district courts as one of their ‘lieutenants’, Ramandeep Singh, alias Shammi, was to be produced here today.

According to information, these men were apprehended by a police party near Suraj Theatre in Sector 1. Though 10 of the gang members escaped, the police arrested 28 of these men on charges of disrupting public peace.

Meanwhile, Shammi, Satish, Sukhjinder, Pradeep and Rajesh were produced in the court today. While Shammi was sent on a one-day police remand in another case of murder registered against him in Pinjore in 2001, the police remand of other four was extended for four more days.

The police had earlier decided to set up an investigating team from among the CIA staff to investigate the cases registered against this gang. This gang is involved in about 60 cases of assault, criminal intimidation and rioting, registered in Pinjore, Kalka and Parwanoo in Himachal Pradesh.

The police had earlier arrested Ramandeep, alias Shammi , a ‘lieutenant’ of this gang, in a case of criminal intimidation and assault from near the district courts. Ramandeep, along with five others, Sukhjinder, Satish, Pradeep, alias Deepu, Rajesh and Balram, had threatened a Pinjore businessman, Mr Ramesh Gupta and assaulted him when he had come to the district courts as a petitioner in one of the cases against them on March 3..

The police has been keeping a 24-hour watch on the main members of this gang and has promised to give a security cover to those who have lodged police complaints against them, especially to those complainants whose cases are under trial. 



One held for forgery, cheating
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 9
After waiting for over four months, the Chandigarh Police has finally come to the rescue of Tara Devi, a resident of Naya Gaon, who had been forced out of her house by her only son, Arjun. A police team from the Sector 11 police station today arrested the woman’s son and booked him for cheating and forgery.

The woman in her representation to the UT Administrator had alleged that her son had forged her signatures to usurp her property. The old woman who can hardly make both ends meet, had no help forthcoming, despite the fact that her husband Jagannath Sharma was the driver of Subhas Chandra Bose and was a freedom fighter himself.

In December last year, she forwarded a representation to UT Administrator Lieut Gen JFR Jacob who had marked it to the SSP. The case was handed over for investigation to the SHO of Sector 11 police station, but nothing happened since then. Her house in Sector 15 (which Tara Devi says belonged to her husband) was in possession of her son who had fallen out with his mother for some reason. On the eve of the Women’s Day, the plight of the woman had been highlighted in the Chandigarh Tribune.

Cheating:A Deputy General Manager at the Sector 17 branch of the State Bank of India (SBI), Mr Subash Kapoor, lodged a complaint with the police that a person posing as a representative of the Spice Telecom took away his mobile and also of his son on the pretext of installing a mechanism on the SIM cards which would enable to track down the mobile set in case of theft. According to the information available, a person called up Mr Kapoor offering him the facility. Then on January 30, a youth came to the complainant’s house to collect the mobile sets. But he came back with the mobile sets stating that he would come back again. Then on March 6, the youth again came to collect the mobile sets and after that he never came back. Suspecting that something was wrong, Mr Kapoor called up the Spice office only to known that no such facility was being offered by it. The police has registered a case of cheating at the Sector 11 Police Station. 



Missing beldar’s body found
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 9
The body of a 52 year-old beldar of the Chandigarh Public Works Department (PWD) was found near a tubewell in the Leisure Valley, Sector 10, here late this evening. No external injury marks were found on the body. The trousers of the victim, Mehar Chand, was lying alongside the body.

The deceased had left his Sector 25 residence on last Tuesday evening along with two persons. A report had been lodged by the son of the victim at the Sector 24 police post on Wednesday last. A Kinetic Honda scooter on which the deceased had left home was missing, said a police official.

The eldest son of the victim, Simarpal (35), told TNS that on Tuesday his father had withdrawn Rs 15,000 from a bank and two persons had come to his home the same evening to collect the money. The other members of the family had gone to attend a marriage at Kalauli in Uttar Pradesh. On the day the deceased went missing, three persons came to his house and drank with him.

“My father left on the Kinetic Honda for Dadu Majra along with the two other persons. My neighbours can identify the two persons”, said Suresh, the other son of the victim. He suspected that the two persons had mixed something in the liquor which caused his father’s death. The police should interrogate the two persons said Suresh.

The victim is survived by his wife, four sons and three daughters. The victim worked at the PWD store in Sector 42.

The police has initiated an inquest under Section 174 of the CrPC.



‘Dairy industry at crossroads’
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, March 9
The Indian dairy industry has reached a crossroads, where neither the consumers nor the producers are able to get value for their money and efforts. It is ironical that though India is one of the highest milk producers in the world, the industry has no competitive edge in the global market. This was stated by Mr Jagmohan Singh Kang, Minister for Animal Husbandry, Punjab, at the concluding session of the 32nd dairy industry conference here today.

He lamented that the quality of Indian milk and milk products was not acceptable to many of the European countries. Sanitary and phyto-sanitary (SPS) restrictions were quite hard for domestic manufacturers to meet. He said the productivity level of Indian dairy animals was not comparable with that of advanced countries. The cost of production, processing and even marketing was higher than in other countries, he added.

The minister said to meet the challenge, the Punjab Government had introduced the world’s most modern animal recording system. Under the scheme, 100 per cent of animals would be vaccinated against contagious diseases, in addition to improving infrastructure. He called upon the dairy industry to take innovative steps to meet the global challenge.

Earlier, the Indian Dairy Association recommended to opt “Operation Excellence” for improving manufacturing performance. Dairy industry should follow six Sigma and total quality management systems.

Mr Kang later distributed awards in the product manufacturing and other categories. The first prize in the product manufacturing category was given to Milkfed Punjab and the second prize to Nestle India Ltd. In the category of dairy plant machine manufacturing, the first prize was given to Hassia Redatron Packaging, and the second to Goma Engg Pvt Ltd. In the category of testing instruments manufacturing, the first prize was given to Benny Impex Pvt Ltd, New Delhi, and the second to Rajasthan Electronics & Instruments Ltd, Jaipur.

In the poster session category, the first prize was given to Dr P. D. Khedkar and his colleagues from the College of Dairy Technology, Warund, Maharashtra, the second prize to A.M Natarajan, Vidya S. and Veena P, R7 D Centre, K.C. Das Pvt Ltd, Bangalore, and the third prize to J. P. S. Gill and J. S. Bedi of PAU, Ludhiana. 


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