Tuesday, April 22, 2003, Chandigarh, India

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Punjabi NRIs facing identity crisis: Harjit Atwal
Phagwara, April 21
Noted Punjabi NRI writer Harjit Singh Atwal said today that the present NRI Punjabi generation, particularly teenagers, was facing an identity crisis and there was a serious problem of preserving our culture before it becomes part of heritage and archaeology.

Little work, good salaries
Patiala, April 21
The Punjab government is giving Rs 35 crore in salaries annually to as many as 2,000 science and commerce teachers of senior secondary schools in the state who teach less than 20 students each. Some teachers are teaching only four to five students and some are teaching none, but continue to get salaries.

Gurmat Music Chair at Punjabi varsity
New Delhi, April 21
With the aim to revive the Gurmat music tradition, particularly the “kirtan chowkis” system at the Golden Temple, Amritsar, the World’s first Gurmat Sangeet Chair has been set up in Punjabi University, Patiala.

Badal’s challenge to Amarinder
Jalandhar, April 21
The Shiromani Akali Dal supremo, Mr Parkash Singh Badal, today challenged the Punjab Chief Minister, Capt Amarinder Singh, to initiate a probe by a high court judge into allegations of corruption pertaining to any 10 selected leaders of the Congress and the SAD after which the leader of the party with the largest number of indicted leaders should quit politics forever.



  Same power tariff likely for agriculture sector
Chandigarh, April 21
The Punjab Government, according to informed sources, has decided to convey to the Punjab State Electricity Regulatory Commission to retain the power tariff at the existing level for the agricultural sector and not to make any increase in it.

Striking truck operators stop a mini truck
Striking truck operators stop a mini truck in Jalandhar on Monday. — PTI

CM’s mantra for contract farming
Chandigarh, April 21
The Punjab Chief Minister, Capt. Amarinder Singh, today called for close coordination with the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry to develop agriculture and network with farmers to encourage contract farming under crop diversification.

Doc mints Rs 1 cr via fake bills
Muktsar, April 21
The local Civil Hospital authorities have unearthed a scam pertaining to the bungling of more than Rs 1 crore by a medical officer. The officer had been allegedly withdrawing money from the treasury through fake bills of salary, arrears and other expenditures since last year.

Amritsar airport has a long way to go
Bathinda, April 21
Is the upgradation of facilities at the Amritsar airport, which has been accorded the status of an international airport, a distant dream? The answer seems to be in the affirmative if the official figures of the Ministry of Civil Aviation are any indication.


Return of five natives from Pak
Wagah (Amritsar), April 21
Five persons Kotli Bajwa village in Narowali, Pakistan, returned to their native village in India after nearly 55 years since they fled the country in 1947. Together they returned to India via the Wagah joint checkpost here yesterday.

Dang for review of SIT working
Amritsar, April 21
The CPI leader, Mr Satya Pal Dang today urged the Chief Minister to ensure that all politicians, police officers, Magistrates and lawyers involved in the kidney scam should not be allowed to go scot-free.

Channi, others evade VB
Jalandhar, April 21
Even as the Vigilance Bureau has not been able to arrest the three remaining accused, including Chairman of C.T. Public School Charanjit Singh Channi in the multi-crore composition fee scam even after four days, the Duty Magistrate, Ms Harreet Kaur, today extended police remand of two civic body employees, who had been arrested on Friday, till April 23.

Human error ruled out in MiG-23 crash
Ludhiana, April 21
While the verdict of the court of inquiry instituted by the Indian Air Force into the MiG-23 crash at Mullanpur Dakha on April 4 is awaited, preliminary investigations conducted by the senior officers have almost ruled out the human error angle into the crash that claimed seven lives.

Gujral: Iraq war has weakened UN
Jalandhar, April 21
Former Prime Minister Inder Kumar Gujral yesterday said that the recent US-led aggression on Iraq had weakened United Nations Organisation, “US-British Aggression on Iraq has undermined the significance of “United Nations Organisation and it is not the first time, earlier also during Bosnia war UNO was sidelined” Mr Gujral told reporters suggesting the reforms in the UNO were needed to regain its significance.
In video: Former Prime Minister I. K. Gujral expresses his full support for Prime Minister Vajpayee's stand on resumption of dialogue with Pakistan. (28k, 56k)

‘They perished before my eyes’

Nawanshahr, April 21
Jairam Yadav, a rickshaw-puller who lost six members of his family in a lightning incident on Saturday night, is yet to come to terms with the catastrophe. The lightning resulted in a fire which engulfed two jhuggis belonging to Jairam and led to the death of his wife Anita, three daughters — Suraj Mani (10), Gunja (9) and Puja (7) — and two sons — Muna (5) and Budh Dass (4).

Ruling on insecticide case
Chandigarh, April 21
A criminal complaint or proceedings initiated against a dealer, accused of contravening the provisions of the Insecticide Act, cannot be quashed until the prosecution has led its evidence, the Punjab and Haryana High Court has ruled in a significant Judgement.

SGPC files plea in Manjit Singh case
Amritsar, April 21
Mr M.S. Gill, counsel for the SGPC, today submitted a application before the Sikh Gurdwara Judicial Commission in a case related to the removal of Prof Manjit Singh, Jathedar, Takht Kesgarh Sahib, saying that it was not maintainable and hence should be dismissed.

Vigilance to seek cancellation of Hardeep’s bail
SAS Nagar, April 21
The Punjab Vigilance Bureau has decided to move the Punjab and Haryana high court for seeking the cancellation of the pre-arrest bail of Hardeep Singh, PA to the former Chief Minister, Mr Parkash Singh Badal. The action of the bureau follows failure of Hardeep Singh to appear before the SP Vigilance Office in Chandigarh today.

Badungar opposes move on casinos
Amritsar , April 21
Prof Kirpal Singh Badungar, SGPC chief, has condemned the proposal to open casinos in Punjab. In a press note today he said the proposal was aimed at destroying the social, economic, mental and religious fabric of the Punjabis by mooting such schemes.


District mandis receive 2.05 tonnes of wheat
Bathinda, April 21
Mr Surinder Singla, Chairman of the High Power Finance Committee, today claimed that wheat procurement was going on smoothly. Mr Singla today visited the local grain market along with Mr Anurag Verma, Deputy Commissioner, Mr Upjeet Singh Brar, SDM, and officials of the District Food and Supply Department and procurement agencies to listen to the problems being faced by farmers.


Truck union chief, ex-chief booked
Bathinda, April 21
The Rampura police has registered a case under Sections 406 and 408, IPC, against Satnam Singh Bhairupa, former president of the truck union, and Basant Singh Krarwala, president of the union, for allegedly misappropriating money of the union.

4 travel agents booked
Kapurthala, April 21
The police has registered a case of fraud against four travel agents for duping three persons about Rs 7 lakh on the pretext of sending them abroad. In a press note issued here today, SSP R.N. Dhoke identified the travel agents as — Bhupinder Singh, Avtar Singh, Major Singh and Jagir Singh.

Wife, 3 others held for man’s murder
Jalandhar, April 21
The district police arrested four persons on charges of murder, including the wife and sister-in-law of the victim, from Kotla village yesterday. According to police sources Gurdev Singh of Narangpur alleged in his complaint to the police that his brother-in-law was married to Ranjit Kaur of Sadiqpur and had two children out of the wedlock.

Man booked for daughter’s death
Bathinda, April 21
The police has booked Rajiv Bansal, his parents Aasha and Dharampal, residents of the city, for allegedly killing his (Rajiv’s) daughter and injuring his wife by pushing them into a canal last evening.

7 suspected robbers held
Muktsar, April 21
The police today claimed to have arrested seven youths who were allegedly planning to loot people of Punjab villages near the border with Rajasthan and Haryana. Mr Shiv Kumar Sharma, SSP, said in a press note issued today that the suspects were arrested from near Luhra village in the district while they were moving in a car under suspicious circumstances.

Armed men take away 15 youths
Tarn Taran, April 21
Resentment prevails among the Nath (Jogi) community over the taking away of 15 youths allegedly by the CIA staff, Amritsar, under mysterious circumstances today.


Rs 64 cr earmarked for 596 schools
Ferozepore, April 21
In order to provide basic amenities like drinking water, writing desks, toilets in 596 government schools of the district. Rs 64 crore has been earmarked for the purpose. This was stated by Mr Ravinder Singh Sandhu, Parliamentary Secretary for NRI cell, while addressing a gathering at the inauguration ceremony of the newly upgraded secondary schools at Ughoke, Machi Bugara and Tumbar Bhan villages.

Varsity bigwigs’ tussle to be legally examined
Chandigarh, April 21
As the the tussle between the Punjabi University’s Vice-Chancellor, Mr S.S. Boparai, and the Pro-Vice Chancellor, Dr R.N. Pal, continues over certain issues, the Punjab Government has decided to get the issue legally examined from the authorities concerned.

SC body writes to National Commission
Patiala, April 21
The Punjab Scheduled Caste and Backward Class Employees Coordination Committee today appealed to the National Commission of Scheduled Castes and Backward Classes to intervene and help revive the policy of reservation in promotions, abolished by the Punjabi University Syndicate in January this year.

Joshi apprised of paper leak
Amritsar, April 21
The Union Minister of Human Resource Development, Dr Murli Manohar Joshi, was today apprised by the Union Minister of State for Secondary and Higher Education, Dr Vallabhbhai Kathiria, about the arrest of Devinder Singh, alias Pappu, by the Amritsar Police on April 18 for allegedly making deals with aspirant candidates for the PMT entrance test by offering to provide them question papers.

Nabha students to get weapons training
Chandigarh, April 21
The Army will give weapons training to students of Punjab Public School, Nabha. This was decided at the meeting of the Board of Governors of the school held here today.

Protest against fee hike
Bathinda, April 21
A section of students of Government Rajindra College protested against the steep hike in fee by wearing black badges during their annual exams and raised slogans against Capt Amarinder Singh after their exam today.

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