Friday, May 30, 2003, Chandigarh, India


M A I N   N E W S

Punjab wheat husk to woo Rajasthan voters
Chander Parkash
Tribune News Service

Bathinda, May 29
If the Congress Chief Minister of Rajasthan, Mr Ashok Gehlot, has proposed 14 per cent reservation in government jobs for the upper-caste poor with an eye on the coming Assembly elections, the Congress government of Punjab has also decided to “help” its neighbouring Congress-ruled state. It has initiated steps to gift thousands of tonnes of wheat husk to Rajasthan, where elections are due after September.

The Punjab Congress Government, which gifted canal water for the drought-affected Rajasthan to win over people there last year, has decided to gift about 7000 tonnes of wheat husk to Rajasthan this year. For this task, the Department of Animal Husbandry has been pressed into service to purchase the required quantity of wheat husk from markets.

Official sources said the Department of Animal Husbandry, Punjab, had floated a tender in various newspapers to purchase wheat husk to be sent to Rajasthan. The tenders would be opened on June 4, 2003. The wheat husk purchased by the Animal Husbandry Department would be despatched to Rajasthan from Bathinda, Muktsar, Malout, Kotkapura, Khanna, Malerkotla, Moga and Mansa railway stations. Apart from this about 900 tonnes of wheat husk would be sent to Churu district of Rajasthan by road.

Sources said the Punjab Government had decided to gift wheat husk to Rajasthan when Mr Gehlot made a request to Chief Minister, Punjab, Capt Amarinder Singh, for the same. Capt Amarinder Singh instructed the Animal Husbandry Department to collect the wheat husk in large quantity. Earlier, the Punjab Congress Government had gifted wheat to Rajasthan.

Dr Harsurat Singh, Director, Animal Husbandry, Punjab, said the wheat husk would be sent to Rajasthan as gift. He added that the Punjab Government would pay for the same. Last year also, the Punjab Government had sent about five rakes of wheat husk to Rajasthan.

He added that wheat husk was being purchased at a short notice as the Railway Ministry had exempted the freight on the transportation of fodder and foodgrain for the people of the declared drought-affected states. This facility was available up to June 30, 2003, and by that time, the Animal Husbandry Department would be able to despatch the required quantity of wheat husk to Rajasthan, as the same was easily available in the markets.

Meanwhile, a section of small farmers, who have been supplementing their income by carrying out dairy farming, while talking to TNS, pointed out that the prices of wheat husk would touch a new high after the Punjab Government despatched 7000 tonnes of wheat husk to Rajasthan, and this would affect them financially. 

Home | Punjab | Haryana | Jammu & Kashmir | Himachal Pradesh | Regional Briefs | Nation | Editorial |
Business | Sport | World | Mailbag | Chandigarh Tribune | Ludhiana Tribune
50 years of Independence | Tercentenary Celebrations |
123 Years of Trust | Calendar | Weather | Archive | Subscribe | Suggestion | E-mail |