Thursday, June 5, 2003, Chandigarh, India


P U N J A B    S T O R I E S



All set for new Akali party
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 4
Senior leaders of the Panthic Morcha are all set to launch a new Akali party that they claimed to be the real traditional Shiromani Akali Dal.

Accompanied by Mr Ravi Inder Singh, Mr Mal Singh Ghuman, Bhai Jasbir Singh Rode and other leaders, Mr Jagdev Singh Talwandi said at a press conference here today that the six member committee that was constituted to frame the guidelines to set up the party had given its report. The task to launch the party would be completed within 45 days, he added.

Mr Talwandi said that the new SAD would be having an 11-member apex committee. There would be one convener with a tenure of only one year and he or she would not be eligible to be the convener again. The principle of one member, one post would be strictly applicable to all in the party, he added.

The 11-member committee would be further divided into two groups — one to look after the religious affairs and other the political issues. A sub-committee would be set up to prepare the constitution of the party. Mr Talwandi said that he had met recently former SGPC chief, Mr Gurcharan Singh Tohra and requested him to stay away from Mr Parkash Singh Badal. “I reminded Mr Tohra the offensive statements made by Mr Badal against him”, he said. When asked what was the response of Mr Tohra, Mr Talwandi said that the former SGPC chief had kept mum.

Mr Kuldeep Singh Wadala and Baba Sarabjot Singh Bedi were not present at the meeting which was held in a hotel before the press conference by these Akali leaders.


Former Registrar’s charge against VC
Tribune News Service

Patiala, June 4
Former Punjabi University Registrar and at present head of the Defence Studies department - Dr K S Sidhu - has accused Vice-chancellor, Punjabi University Swarn Singh Boparai of stalling his academic development by not allowing him to go abroad for attending an international conference.

The former Registrar, in a communication to Pro Vice-chancellor Dr R.N. Pal yesterday, also claimed that he would file a defamation suit against the VC for certain “defamatory” remarks made in an official file. He said till the VC gave the “right orders” in his case he would not perform duties as head of the department and his resignation should be accepted from yesterday.

Dr K.S. Sidhu apparently was replying to a “confidential” letter written to him by varsity Pro VC Dr R.N. Pal. In the letter the Pro VC while addressing the former Registrar as “Pyare Sidhu Sahab” had informed him on the status of his application for going to Salzburg in Austria in December on a UGC-sponsored seminar on “Changing trends in Asian Security”. The letter informed Dr Sidhu that the VC had asked the writer to explain whether names of teachers who had been punished for misconduct should be recommended for attending such seminars. The Syndicate had stopped two increments of Dr Sidhu in a case involving checking of girl students by a flying squad team of which he was a member in the early eighties.

The Pro VC in his letter to the former Registrar also informed him that two letters had been written in this connection to the varsity Registrar but no answer received from him. It asked Dr Sidhu to explain his case so that an appropriate reply could be sent to the VC.

Meanwhile Dr Sidhu in his reply to the PVC said the comment on whether teachers punished by the University could go abroad or not could be meant for him alone. He said he serving as a Professor in the University besides having remained its Registrar. He also claimed that the present VC had appointed him head of the Defence Studies Department for the third successive time. The former Registrar said on the other hand very senior persons who had got anticipatory bail in criminal cases were holding important jobs. The letter also tells the PVC that he must know of the cases in which teachers who had been punished by the varsity had not only been recommended for foreign seminars but had also given financial aid by the University.

The letter goes on to claim that on the one hand V C S.S. Boparai was asking the senior teachers to attend important meetings and on the other standing in the way of his academic development. Dr Sidhu goes on to claim in the letter that the VC was acting like this because he had appealed to the varsity Chancellor against his removal besides objecting to the appointment of a person who was a relative of the VC in his place as Registrar.

The former Registrar also claims that the VC earlier used unpleasant words against him on an official file. He said he was consulting his lawyer in this regard and would be filing a suit against the VC. The Registrar also urged the PVC that as far as his case for going abroad to attend a seminar was concerned, it should be referred to the UGC for a decision. He said the delay in referring the case to the UGC should also be condoned. 


Dal Khalsa to observe Sant’s death anniversary
Tribune News Service

Amritsar, June 4
To set at rest the controversy over the death of Sant Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale, said to be killed in Operation Bluestar, Giani Joginder Singh Vedanti, Jathedar Akal Takht has invited Bhai Isher Singh, son of late Sant on June 6 at a function being organised at Manji Sahib by the Dal Khalsa.

After 19 years after the reported death of Sant Bhindranwale, his son would be given ‘dastar’ (turban) by Jathedar Akal Takht. It is for the first time in Sikh history that the controversy over the death of a Sikh leader persisted for two decades. The Damdami Taksal, once headed by Sant Bhindranwale, believed that he (Bhindranwale) was still alive and would emerge at an appropriate time, however, maintained studied silence on the issue. Though the Damdami Taksal would organise a parallel function at Chowk Mehta, but Jathedar Akal Takht has sent an invitation to it to join the death anniversary function of the Sant.

According to sources, Jathedar Akal Takht has also invited Bibi Pritam Kaur, widow of Sant Bhindarnwale, widow of General Shabeg Singh who had fortified Akal Takht before Operation Bluestar, family members of Bhai Amrik Singh, the then president of the All-India Sikh Students Federation (AISSF), Bhai Manjit Singh, senior leader of the Sarb Hind Shiromani Akali Dal (brother of late Bhai Amrik Singh), Capt Harcharn Singh Rode, brother of Sant Bhindranwale who had recognised his (Bhindranwale’s) body after Operation Bluestar and the family members of Baba Joginder Singh etc.

Meanwhile, Akhand Path, in the memory of those killed in Operation Bluestar started at Akal Takht. The bhog would be performed on June 6.

It is for the first time that speeches would be made by leaders of various factions of the Sikh Panth on the occasion of the death anniversary of Sant Bhindranwale. Mr Kanwarpal Singh, spokesman of the Dal Khalsa disclosed radical Sikh leaders, including Wassan Singh Zaffarwal, Dr Jagjit Singh Chouhan, Mr Simranjit Singh Mann, president, Shiromani Akali Dal (Amritsar), Mr Manjit Singh Calcutta, a former SGPC secretary, and leaders of Human Rights Organisations and SGPC would participate in the function.

How the Damdami Taksal would react after the formal death anniversary of the Sant is to be seen.


Water in toxic-lined tankers
Lalit Mohan

Ropar, June 4
The people of Himachal facing shortage of water these days are being supplied water contaminated with chemicals. Tankers of the Nangal Truck Union that ferry toxic chemicals including hydrochloric acid (HCL), liquid caustic, methanol and sulphuric acid from the National Fertilizer Ltd and Punjab Alkalies and Chemicals Ltd now are being used by the Public Health authorities of Himachal to carry water to areas facing shortage of it.

Sources in the Nangal Truck Union said at present over 100 tankers detailed to ferry the chemicals are being used on part-time basis to supply drinking water to Mandi, Bilaspur and Una districts of Himachal. The Public Health authorities of Himachal hire these tankers for carrying water to remote areas.

The sources added that two types of tankers were used to ferry chemicals from Nangal-based chemical plants. The tankers that ferry methanol are made of mild steel. The tankers that ferry HCL, sulphuric acid or liquid caustic are lined with rubber to protect these from being damaged by corrosive action of the chemicals.

Though the tankers having simple mild steel bodies can be washed to some extent, it was very difficult to wash the rubber-lined bodies of tankers. A tanker owner said that the chemical carried in the vehicles is so toxic that if anybody entered the tanker body to clean it he would faint.

The tanker owners just rinse the tankers before using these for carrying water to areas of Himachal. Just passing of water through the tanker body does not free it from chemicals.

The DGM (quality control) in the PACL, Mr SS Dass told that the Nangal-based tankers were hired by the company to ferry acid with around 35 per cent concentration, sulphuric acid and liquid caustic with 47.3 per cent concentration. The chemicals are toxic in nature. When asked if the tankers used for ferrying chemicals could be used for supplying drinking water he said only if these were washed properly from inside.

The technical authorities of the NFL on the condition of anonymity said the company hired tankers from the Nangal Truck Union for ferrying methanol. Methanol is toxic in nature and it was not advisable to carry drinking water in the vehicles used for carrying the chemical.

The sources added the rubber-lined tankers should never be used for transporting drinking water. The chemicals generally ferried by these tankers remain in the rubber lining. Simple cleaning by water cannot make these vehicles suitable for supplying drinking water. The chances would always be there that water supplied by the rubber-lined tankers contained traces of toxic chemicals. They added that the water being supplied in areas facing shortage in summer should be checked for toxicity to avoid hazards to the health of people.


Now Punjab wheat to woo Rajasthani voters
Our Correspondent

Bathinda, June 4
While much hue and cry is being raised about the “empty coffers” of the state, not only did the government float tenders for the procurement of wheat husk for gifting it to drought-affected Rajasthan, but also Chief Minister Amarinder Singh has decided to send 20,000 quintal of wheat that would be flagged off from here tomorrow.

The Chief Minister will flag off 50 truckload of wheat from here while state Cabinet ministers will flag off 150 trucks each from Muktsar and Ferozepore.

Political analysts said to ensure a second term for his counterpart in Rajasthan, Capt Amarinder Singh would also be using official machinery. Wheat husk, wheat and release of water were part of the strategy.

Earlier the Congress had helped Rajasthan by bearing the expenses itself but this time the expenses are being borne by the Punjab Government.

A section of farmers said if the wheat husk was to be sent to Rajasthan, the tenders in this connection should have been floated before the harvest. The farmers said this would have enabled them to earn some money instead of burning wheat straw. They said it could lead to a shortage of wheat husk in Punjab.

Sources said from this district 3,000 quintal wheat would be sent to Churu district and 1,000 quintal to Udaipur and Dungarpur districts of Rajasthan. From Muktsar district, the Punjab Warehousing Corporation would send 5,000 quintal and PUNSUP 2,000 quintal. From Ferozepore PUNSUP would send 3,000 quintal and Punjab Agro Corporation 5,000 quintal to various districts of Rajasthan. The Deputy Commissioners of the respective districts had been directed to coordinate the flagging off of the wheat.


Informers pocket reward money, turn hostile
Tribune News Service

Bathinda, June 4
A section of the complainants, who have pocketed the reward money for getting gazetted and non-gazetted government officials caught red-handed by the Vigilance Bureau, have been turning hostile to save the accused in corruption cases by retracting their statements in the court.

In the past few years, a number of people, who got thousands of rupees as reward money for getting government officials caught redhanded under a scheme launched by the previous SAD-BJP government, have turned hostile and made statements in the court which were suited for the acquittal of the accused allegedly in lieu of some consideration.

Sources said the Vigilance Bureau, Ferozepore and Bathinda had been facing such problems frequently and had witnessed more than 10 complainants turning hostile in the court facilitating the acquittal of the accused.

To check this menace, the bureau has started registering criminal cases against the complainants for committing a fraud with the department under Section 420 of the IPC.

In one such case registered against Sanjeev Kumar of Bareta town of Mansa district yesterday, the accused had taken Rs 25,000 as reward money for getting a corruption case registered against Santosh Kumar, a clerk in the office of the Drug Inspector, in 1997. Sanjeev Kumar alleged that he had given a bribe of Rs 10,000 to Santosh Kumar for getting a licence to run wholesale and retail business of medicines.

However, when the trial in the corruption case against Santosh Kumar was going on, the accused, Sanjeev Kumar, retracted his statement in the court and facilitated the acquittal of Santosh Kumar. For this, a case under Section 420 of the IPC was registered against Sanjeev Kumar for committing a fraud on the Punjab Government. The accused has been arrested, said Mr Baljinder Singh Grewal, SSP (Vigilance), Bathinda zone, in a press note issued here today.

In another case, Gurbachan Singh, sarpanch of Veerawala Kalan village of Faridkot district, had been arrested for his alleged involvement in the misuse of funds given to the village for its development by the Punjab Government. The accused committed irregularities in the use of the funds allocated for various development projects by using substandard material and that, too, in a lesser quantity than was required.

The total amount misused by the accused was about Rs 1,41,314. A case under Section 13 (2) 88 of the Prevention of Corruption Act and Section 409 and 120-B of the IPC had been registered against the accused, Mr Grewal added.


Villagers without power for 1 month
Our Correspondent

Gurdaspur, June 4
Resentment prevails among residents of border Rahimabad village against the failure of power supply for the past one month. Mr Parminder Singh Saabi, member, Zila Parishad, said PSEB employees concerned removed the transformer more than two weeks ago on the promise to replace it the next day. But nothing has been done so far.

Rahimabad village has a population of about 4,000 and its residents are without power supply in the intense heat wave hitting the area these days.

Repeated requests of the villagers to restore the power supply have fallen on deaf ears.


Fate of Indian POWs unknown
Anirudh Gupta

FEROZEPORE: The recent confidence-building measures undertaken by both Indian and Pakistani governments have raised fresh hopes for the kith and kin of 54 Indian PoW’s languishing in Pakistani jails for more than 31 years now. Though the Indian authorities have decided to release hundreds of Pakistani prisoners as part of the CBM yet there is no word about their fate from the Pakistani side.

The Pakistan Government has never admitted that any Indian defence officer is in its custody and has not included any such PoW in the list of Indian prisoners held in Pakistan but there are reports which substantiate the claim of relatives of the Indian defence officers detained in Pakistani jails since 1971.

A former Indian spy to Pakistan, Mr. Mohan Lal Bhaskar who remained for several years in Pakistani jails asserted that 50 to 60 PoWs were still languishing in Pakistani jails. He said in 1974, Major Ayaz Sipra, an instructor in Defence College , Aptabad, and Col. Asif Shaffi, CO, 2 Punjab Regiment of Pakistan, who were jailed in Attack fort in connection with the Bhutto conspiracy, told Bhaskar, who was also jailed with them that they had met one Gill (Wg Cdr. Gill) of the Indian Air Force and Capt. Giriraj Singh of the Indian Army.

In 1975, Major Ashok Suri managed to send a letter from Karachi jail to his father in which he wrote that about 20 other Indian officers were in Pakistani jails. In 1988, a book written by a British woman, Victoria Schoffield , titled “ Bhutto Trial and Execution” carried a reference to Indian PoWs being lodged at Kot Lakhpat jail in Pakistan close to where Mr Zulfikar Ali Bhutto was kept in solitary confinement.

All these years, relatives of these 54 missing Indian defence personnel have been moving from pillar to post to secure the release of their loved ones but the Government of Pakistan has always denied holding any such Indian PoWs. In 1983, a delegation of relatives of six missing PoWs was sent to Pakistan to identify them among the Indian detainees but the Pakistani authorities refused to show all the detainees in their custody.

A Pakistani newspaper, “The Sunday Observer”, dated December 5, 1971, wrote that five Indian pilots had been captured alive, one of them being Flt-Lt Tombay or “Tambay”. The “ Time” magazine issue of December 27, 1971, carried a picture of Indian soldiers behind bars in Pakistan, including one identified as Major A.K.Ghosh. Pakistan Radio announced the names of several Indian pilots captured alive, including Wg. Cdr. Gill, Flt-Lt. Harvinder Singh, Flying Officer Tyagi and Flt-Lt. Goswami but the Pakistani Government has never admitted to having these officers in its custody.

Salim Mohammed, who was sent back to India on May 18, 2003, after spending two years in Pakistani jail said that there were hundreds of Indian prisoners still detained in Pakistani. The released Indian prisoners said that many have lost their sanity after years of torture and confinement. Salim said that there were at least 15 to 20 prisoners in Kot Lakhpat jail, Lahore, and about 10 to 15 in Quetta jail, Baluchistan, who have lost their mental balance after several years of captivity and stress.

Many of the family members of these Indian PoW’s who reached Wagah with a hope that their ward may be one of the chosen ones released by Pakistan, went back disillusioned. Some of them were showing the photographs of their relatives to the released prisoners to ascertain whether they had seen them in Pakistani jails?

Repeated requests have been made to the United Nations and the International Red Cross but in vain. The relatives of these Indian missing defence personnel who all these years have been hoping against hope to see their loved ones back have again appealed to the Pakistani authorities to release these Indian PoW’s and honour the Vienna convention.


BSP not to contest panchayat poll
Tribune News Service

Bathinda, June 4
The state unit of the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) has decided not to field its candidates in the forthcoming panchayat elections as the party leadership has been busy for the past several weeks in strengthening the party at the grass root level.

However, the BSP leadership has allowed its workers to contest the panchayat elections on their own without using the party symbol. No BSP leader will be available for the election campaign of such contestants.

Sources close to the BSP leadership pointed out that the party had taken this decision after analysing its past experience. Most of the BSP workers, who were elected sarpanches and panchayat members in the last panchayat elections, had shifted their loyalties to the then ruling SAD-BJP alliance after being lured with various grants for the development of their respective villages. The party leadership was of the opinion that the grassroot level workers usually succumbed to the pressure and subsequently changed their loyalties in favour of the ruling alliance. This was the main reason due to which the party leadership had decided not to contest the panchayat elections this time.

However, Mr Sham Singh Jaura, General Secretary, BSP (Punjab), while talking to TNS pointed out that the party had decided not to contest any election other than the Assembly and Lok Sabha elections. He added that the BSP had not fielded its candidates in the municipal council elections held a few months ago and in the last panchayat elections, BSP workers did not contest the same on party symbol.

He added that the decision of not contesting the coming panchayat elections had been taken, as the entire party rank and file was busy in setting up its unit from the state-level to booth-level. This exercise would take about three months. This exercise had been undertaken with the motive of strengthening the party and to make it a significant force in the forthcoming Lok Sabha elections. The BSP would go alone in the Lok Sabha elections. He, however, added that the BSP could contest the municipal corporation elections of this town whenever these would be held.

Mr Jaura pointed out that the party had been strengthening its organisational set up by making the people aware of the issues like expensive education, electricity and transportation, withdrawal of facilities extended to the Scheduled Castes by the previous SAD-BJP combine government by the ruling Congress Government and an increase in the number of incidents pertaining to the social boycott of persons belonging to the Scheduled Castes in rural areas.


Fund constraints delay spinal injury centre
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 4
The overzealous approach of the Punjab Government to extend and broadbase its ambitious Regional Spinal Injury Centre coming up at Sector 70, SAS Nager, has now created the problem of resource crunch. The centre, which is presently functioning from the Sector 32 Government Medical College and Hospital, will move to its new location only after the additional funds required to make it operational are sanctioned by the state government.

The state-of-the-art spinal injury centre in Punjab, happens to be one of the five such centres, to be started in various parts of the country under a Central Government - sponsored scheme, including one in Delhi. As part of the scheme, the state which was given this project was to provide the land, and the Central Government was to give funds worth Rs 1.68 crore for its construction.

According to official sources, when the project started two years ago, the state government contributed its share by providing 5 acres of PUDA land in Sector 70 and the work began with the Central government grant allocated for each of these projects.

Sources further add that the state government, which saw it as a prestigious project wanted to expand it same by making certain amendments in the plan approved earlier. This required extra funds, which the cash-strapped government did not have to spare. Hence, the work on the project came to a stand still few months ago.

The Principal Secretary In Charge, Ms Asha Attri, when contacted said she would be taking up the case pertaining to the requirement of additional funds for the project with the Chief Minister, Capt Amarinder Singh shortly, since the Central government at a meeting held in Delhi had declined to provide funds more than what was allocated under the scheme. The estimates required to make it operational, in terms of completion of building and provision of equipment, would be put before him for consideration.

The Director, Social Security and Development of Women and Children, Mr Som Parkash, said the estimated cost of the project now is Rs 3.22 crore and the government needs to sanction at least Rs 1.8 crore under the first phase to make it operational. He admitted that fund constraints were delaying the project.

The Deputy Commissioner, Ropar, Ms Seema Jain, said the centre with state-of-the-art facilities would be one of its kind in the country. It will cater to the needs of serious spinal injury cases from of Punjab, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir and Chandigarh.

The architectural design of the three-storeyed building is such that it would have all facilities required for dealing with spinal injury cases.

She said there would be provision for residences of faculty members within the premises, to provide round-the-clock services to patients, besides campus lighting and landscaping. There is also a provision of a gymnasium, physiotherapy centre, vocational centre for rehabilitation, besides the administrative offices.

Dr Raj Bahadur, who is the Director of this project and an expert in spinal injuries, said the centre would lay stress on providing special care of spinal injury victims in exclusive environment. It would be a composite complex where everything from receiving a patient, to early resuscitation, surgery, followed by physiotherapy and vocational rehabilitation will be provided under the same roof.


Minister’s kin taste power breakdown
Our Correspondent

Gurdaspur, June 4
Some family members of Mr Gurchet Singh Bhullar, Irrigation Minister, were trapped in a lift while they were on their way to spillway of the Ranjit Sagar Dam on Monday, according to the reports received here today. The power system at the dam broke down completely at that time.

On June 1 Mr Bhullar, accompanied by his wife, son, daughter-in-law and grand child, reached Shahpur Kandi on a visit to the Ranjit Sagar Dam. It was on June 2 that the minister accompanied by his son and Mr P.L. Saini, SE, Ranjit Sagar Dam, reached the spillway through a lift. When the other members of the family were getting down to the spillway of the dam through lift, it stopped suddenly in between and the power breakdown caused panic among in the lift. The gunman of the minister, who was also there in the informed the officials about the failure of power system and development of some snag in the lift.

According to official sources the lift carrying the family of the minister was brought down through another mechanical system.

Mr Natha Singh, president of the Thein Dam Workers Union, said lifts of power houses developed snags as these were not ISI marked. He alleged tat the lifts were sub-standard and had been supplied to the dam by some ordinary firm. He said normally important officials of the dam and dignitaries visiting the dam were not taken in these lifts. As many as five lifts without the ISI mark are operating on the dam at present, he added.

Mr Natha Singh said besides the lifts, even the material used at the dam was substandard and could lead to accidents. He demanded a probe into the matter.


Encroachments galore in Amritsar
Rashmi Talwar

Amritsar, June 4
Even as authorities are quick to move against ordinary persons, the same authorities completely shirk their responsibilities when it comes to the rich and the powerful.

It is learnt that several influential persons have encroached on land belonging to the Municipal Corporation, the Improvement Trust and PUDA in several colonies in the city. Cases of land grab and encroachments have been reported from the Kabir Park, Basant Avenue, Guru Teg Bahadur Nagar, Ram Bagh, the railway road, near the Golden Temple area, Putlighar etc.

In several cases persons purchased a plot but occupied adjoining plots. A site meant for the Fire Brigade station was encroached upon in an area near the university. While a restaurant and school were functioning in the same area on the encroached land, a school has been opened in the middle of an area meant for a road. Even as land worth crores gets encroached on by the powerful, the authorities take little notice of this whole illegal activity. Even the roads between two houses were known to have been occupied by some influential persons in some areas. Public parks too have not been spared. Encroaching on land for making toilets for guards, servants or drivers of some powerful in posh colonies is common. Apart from this, temporary encroachments by “rehriwalas” and others can be seen everywhere.

Mr Brij Bedi, president of the Citizens Forum, has demanded immediate and urgent action against those who have encroached upon government lands.


Custodial torture: cop held guilty
Our Correspondent

Mansa, June 4
The Chief Judicial Magistrate (CJM) of Mansa, Mr Harsh Mehta, today convicted Sub-Inspector (SI) Rupinder Bhardwaj and sentenced him to rigorous imprisonment (RI) for six months and a fine of Rs 200 under Section 342 of the IPC. In default of payment of fine, he will have to further undergo RI for 15 days.

The SI when posted as SHO in Mansa, took an advocate, Devinder Singh Sidhu, in police custody under Section, 353 of the IPC and tortured the advocate. When some members of the District Bar Association, Mansa, offered bail for Sidhu, the SHO did not oblige.

The Bar took the matter to the Punjab and Haryana High Court for the registration of a criminal case against the SHO. Subsequently an FIR was registered against the SHO and led to his conviction today.

The CJM also convicted the advocate, Devinder Singh Sidhu, under Section 353 of the IPC and sentenced him to RI for two months and a fine of Rs 200 and in default of payment of fine to further undergo RI for 10 days while his father Gurcharan Singh Sidhu, who was also accused in the case, was acquitted by the court. The advocate had caused obstruction in the performance of duty of a police constable under the influence of liquor.

Meanwhile Ms Baljinder Kaur Bhatia, Judicial Magistrate first Class, Mansa, convicted Amarjit Kaur, a constable of Barnala police district under Sections 420, 467, 468 and 471 of the IPC and sentenced her to undergo RI for two years and pay a fine of Rs 5,000 and in default of payment of fine to further undergo RI for one month.


Mayor promises to improve civic amenities

Amritsar, June 4
Mayor Sunil Datti announced that 20 new tube-wells would be installed this year. He said that 27 more tubewells would be installed in the district with the help of the District Planning Board.

The Tribune had highlighted in its May 29 issue that 35 per cent of the population did not have potable water supply. The sewerage was poor and the city was devoid of storm water disposal system. Besides this, the condition of roads was poor due to the lack of funds.

While inaugurating the road project near the Golden Temple here today, Mr Datti said Rs 5 crore would be spent for the maintenance of roads. The Mayor inaugurated several other road projects, including at Chheharta and the Race Course road. He said main roads of the city had been neglected by the Akali-BJP government and these roads would be repaired soon, following which the work on the inter-linking of roads would begin.

He said the corporation had proposed to buy more machinery for sanitation.

Mr Datti announced that Rs 5 crore would be spent on the beautification of the surroundings of the Golden Temple, including repair of roads and fountains.


He is all set to become ‘she’
Gurvinder Kaur

Patiala, June 4
Mr Amrik Singh of Urban Estate here has been taking guidance from a plastic surgeon, Dr Harish Sood, for a sex change operation. The 23-year-old Sikh has been visiting Gurdwara Dukhniwaran for the past 40 days to pray for the success of the operation.

He says he is a girl trapped in a man’s body and likes to dress up like a girl. He is comfortable in the company of women, due to which his marriage has failed. “I had told my parents that I did not wish to marry, but they thought I would be cured of my desire of becoming a girl after marriage. They proved wrong and my marriage lasted for only two months,” he says.

The youth has been forsaken by his parents and now lives with Ms Mohinder Kaur, who has adopted him. She has agreed for the operation after his threat to commit suicide. She has now decided to stand by him.

Dr Sood says such patients suffer from gender dysphoria — incompatibility between mental and physical gender. He adds that such persons suffer from confusion, sense of incompletion, loss of interest in life, abnormal sex desires, depression and high suicidal tendency.

He says the results of male-to-female conversion are usually more satisfying surgically though society favours female-to-male conversion. The surgeon has tried to dissuade Amrik from going in for the operation, but the latter says he will rather die than be dissuaded.

Dr Sood says female hormones will be injected into Amrik over six to eight months. After this, hair on his face and other parts of the body will be removed through laser therapy. Replacement of male organs with female organs, rhinoplasty and breast augmentation will be done next. He says Amrik will have to go through extensive speech therapy and learn female mannerisms.


Probe ordered into ‘cheating’ by financier
Our Correspondent

Abohar, June 4
The SSP Ferozepore has ordered the anti-fraud squad of the police to probe allegations of ‘misconduct and cheating’ against a finance company. The squad has reportedly summoned four persons, including one based in New Delhi.

Mr Mangat Singh, proprietor, King Motors, Fazilka in his complaint had stated that three persons claiming to be partners of a finance company here had approached him to facilitate the delivery of a motor cycle to farmer Jatinder Singh of Ujhawali village. The customer paid Rs 14987 in cash and the vehicle was hypothecated for Rs 20,000 in 1999. The representatives of the financial company secured cheques for Rs 15000 and 20,000 respectively as surety against hypothecation from him.

According to the complaint the said cheques had neither date of issue nor the name of the beneficiary. The partners of the company, in order to harass and coerce him for cheating, forwarded the cheques to their contact man at Delhi last year putting fictitious dates and the name of the Delhi based relative. One of the cheques was cleared by the bank but other bounced as the account had been closed. Now the Delhi based relative of the financiers was allegedly threatening the complainant. The customer of the motorcycle had endorsed the position made clear by the complainant in an affidavit.

Mr Mangat Singh said the financier had reportedly joined hands to extract money. They had figured in the sale purchase of stolen vehicles from Maharashtra recently. The complainant demanded that all four be booked under Sections 418, 420, 467, 468, 471, 120B and 506 of the IPC.


Adjust surplus coop mill staff: CM
Our Correspondent

Abohar, June 4
Chief Minister Amarinder Singh has directed heads of corporations and apex bodies in the cooperative sector to speed up the process of adjusting surplus staff of cooperative Spinning mills and Spinfed as the state government has decided to wind up the units that were running in heavy losses.

A meeting had been held between the Chief Minister and Mr Harminder Singh, president of the Punjab State Cooperative Spinning Mills Workers Employees Coordination Committee, besides other senior functionaries.

Briefing newspersons here, Mr Harminder Singh said the Chief Minister had earlier assured the coordination committee that the demands of the employees would be looked into.

Mrs Raji P. Srivastva, Managing Director, Spinfed, has sent lists of surplus staff to the Managing Director of the Punjab Agro Industries Corporation and the State Warehousing Corporation, requesting them to adjust the employees against vacant posts.

She said the state government had decided to wind up Spinfed and spinning mills at Abohar, Bathinda, Goindwal. Cooperative spinning mills at Mansa, Malout, Kotkapura and Barnala had already been put under the liquidation process.


Residents give aid to fire victims
Our Correspondent

Ropar, June 4
Residents and non-government organisations (NGOs), in response to the appeal issued by the district administration, have contributed generously for victims of the fire tragedy at Ropar on Monday in which over hundred huts were gutted.

The Deputy Commissioner Ms Seema Jain, while talking to newsmen here yesterday said within 24 hours of the tragedy, the residents contributed clothes, utensils, kitchenware and cash for the victims.

After the assessment of loss, 42 families had been identified who had lost their entire belongings in the fire. These families would be provided aid on a priority basis, she said.

The District Red Cross Society had also decided to give a grant of Rs 500 to each family. Till alternative arrangements were made for housing, the affected families had been accommodated in sheds of the Birla farm in Ropar, she informed.

The District Red Cross also organised a thanksgiving programme for the individuals and societies that came to the aid of the fire victims at such a short notice.


2.8 lakh saplings to be planted in Punjab
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 4
With a view to replenish the depleting forest cover in the state and to reduce the pollution level in its vicinity, as many as 2.8 lakh saplings would be planted by the Departments of Animal Husbandry, Fisheries, Dairy Development, Sports and Youth Services, Punjab, in various government institutions in association with the Forest Department.

This information was given by Mr Jagmohan Singh Kang while presiding over a meeting of the department officials yesterday. The department of Youth Services has been entrusted with the task of coordinating with these departments.

Mr Kang said steps would be taken to ensure that the saplings survive the vagaries of weather. He appealed to the people to make their surroundings clean and pollution free. 


Residents of CM’s village feel neglected
Chander Parkash
Tribune News Service

Mehraj (Bathinda), June 4
The euphoria generated among a large section of residents of this native village of Capt Amarinder Singh after he was sworn in Chief Minister of Punjab more than a year ago, has started diminishing due to the repeated failure on his part to pay it a visit. This is his ancestral village where a “samadh” of his forefathers is present.

Residents were disappointed when Capt Amarinder Singh visited a “dera” located near Bhucho about a month ago and did not visit to this village that is located nearby. Again, he will not be visiting this village tomorrow when he will arrive in the town and Mehma Serja village in connection with the flagging-off ceremony of trucks carrying wheat to drought-affected Rajasthan and to listen to the grievances of rural people regarding inadequate supply of potable water.

“Our joy knew no bounds when Capt Amarinder Singh, who has roots in this village, became the Chief Minister of Punjab. We thought now Mehraj will be developed into a model village and will be better than Badal, the native village of the former Chief Minister, Mr Parkash Singh Badal. But nothing has been done in the past more than one year,” pointed out a resident while pleading anonymity.

However, Mr Jasbir Singh Mehraj, another resident of the village, claimed that Capt Amarinder Singh had sanctioned Rs 8 crore for various development projects of the village. He added that Capt Amarinder Singh had been taking due care about the development of the village and no one should mind that he had not visited here so far.

Capt Amarinder Singh paid a visit to this village when the Congress party took out a yatra on the eve of the tercentenary celebrations of the birth of the Khalsa. After that Mr Raninder Singh, son of Capt Amarinder Singh paid a visit about a few months ago and promised the people that the Chief Minister would visit it shortly.

Meanwhile, the Punjab Government has prepared projects pertaining to potable water and sewerage facilities to the entire village, which has nine panchayat bodies and a population of about 20,000, paved streets with street lights, a nursing institute, a sports academy and a technical institute. 


Medical representatives’ strike today
Tribune News Service

Sangrur, June 4
Medical representatives from all over Punjab will observe a complete strike from June 5 to June 7.

Giving this information here today, Mr Kaminder Walia, secretary of the local unit of Punjab and Chandigarh Medical and Sales Representatives Union (PCMSRU), said the medical representatives would observe a three-day strike in support of their demands and in protest against anti-worker policies of the government.

Mr Walia said the demands of the union included the abolition of contractual recruitments, delinking of sales performance from the condition of service of field worker, exclusion of managerial work from day-to-day work of field workers, minimum wages as Rs 4,000 with linkage to dearness allowance and bonus as per law, implementation of Provident Fund Act, gratuity for field workers, stringent action against spurious medicine traders and availability of medicines at affordable prices.

Mr Walia also stated that the union government should also hold an inquiry into the corrupt business practices by drug companies.


Badungar inaugurates gate
Our Correspondent

Kharar, June 4
Mr Kirpal Singh Badungar, President of the SGPC, today inaugurated a gate constructed by the managing committee of Gurdwara Sahib Akali Daftar, Kharar, here today.

He announced a grant of Rs 1 lakh for the langar bhavan and Rs 2 lakh for a parking lot and required books on Sikh literature for the library to be opened at the gurdwara.

Mr Pritam Singh Salomajra, Mr Mokha Singh and Mr Sadhu Singh Todermajra (all SGPC members), Ms Satwant Kaur Sandhu (MLA), Ms Satwinder Kaur Dhaliwal (ex MP), Mr Kiranbir Singh Kang, Mr Rajbir Singh Padiala and members and leaders of both groups of the Akali Dal were present on the occasion.

Mr Badungar criticised the Punjab Government for rejecting the Nanakshahi calendar. He said the Chief Minister had said that the government would follow the national calendar, although there was nothing like a national calendar in the country. He said the issue of unity among leaders of the Akali Dal had already been finalised and an announcement in that regard could be made at any moment.


Show dedicated to Prithvi Raj Kapoor
Tribune News Service

Patiala, June 4
Baradari Gardens Theatre Movement, launched by the National Theatre Arts Society (NTAS), Patiala, under the “Theatre on first Sunday of Every Month” campaign is gaining momentum and popularity.

Mr Shiv Dular Singh Dhillon, Additional Deputy Commissioner, Patiala, dedicating “Punjabi Haas Raag Rang,” a programme of Punjabi humour, music and drama, to Prithvi Raj Kapoor and Raj Kapoor, at their death anniversaries, lauded the efforts of Pran Sabharwal and Sunita Sabharwal for promoting Punjabi theatre and remembering art personalities. Rib-tickling skit‘Patang baz’, scenes from Punjabi musical play ‘Daaire,’ singing by baby Maina and NRI artist S.S. Bindra, dances by Shruti Saxena and Rahul and a caricature of a Russian delegate and his interpreter by Pran Sabharwal were very much appreciated.

The nest, first Sunday monthly “Punjabi Haas Raag Rang” programme will be held on July 6 at Baradari Gardens.


Ban on loudspeakers till July 26
Our Correspondent

Amritsar, June 4
District Magistrate Raminder Singh has banned the use of loudspeakers, especially at marriage palaces and religious places. The ban, ordered under Section 144, Cr PC will remain in force till July 26. In another order, the DM has banned the manufacture and use of polythene bags of thickness less than 20 microns for any kind of storing and packing of foodstuffs.

He has also banned the colouring of jeeps, motorcycles and other vehicles in military green colour. The DM has further banned the passing of vulgar posters on public or private buildings, especially by cinema owners.


Grants given to 45 families of martyrs
Our Correspondent

Hoshiarpur, June 4
As many as 72 Army men of the district have laid down their lives while protecting the borders since 1999. A grant of Rs 2 lakh each has been given to 45 of these families. This was stated by Mr Kirandeep Singh Bhullar, Deputy Commissioner-cum-president of the District Sainik Welfare Board, while addressing a quarterly meeting of the board here yesterday. Besides, cases of seven more families had been finalised for providing grants, he said. Meanwhile, eight cases had been sent to the state government and seven to the Director, Sainik Welfare Board, for approval in this regard. Five cases were still under consideration.

Regarding allotment of a plot or Rs 5 lakh in lieu of it, he said Rs 5 lakh each had been give to 30 families. Plots had been provided to two families. Besides, nine cases had been sent to the state government and six to the Director, Sainik Welfare Board, Punjab, for final approval for the allotment of plots. Five cases were still under consideration. He said two members of these families had been given Class-II posts, eight Class-III and 10 Class-IV posts.

Mr Bhullar said financial help of Rs 68,000 had been given to 13 ex-servicemen or their widows for marriages of their daughters from January 1 2003 to March 31, 2003. 


Photo journalist holds exhibition
Our Correspondent

Patiala, June 4
Rajesh Sachar, a photo journalist, exhibited his photographs here today on the premises of Theta Management Services. The main theme of his photographs was “True Life”.

The photographs cover various facets of life. These include a number of photographs clicked during the Heritage Festival organised at Patiala in February. There are two photographs of Birju Maharaj and Sonal Mansingh in this series.

The photographs mainly depict religious places, including the historic Kali Devi temple. There are also some photographs of nature in all its beauty, besides those of children. The exhibition was inaugurated by senior Congress leader K.K. Sharma


Allow Sikhs to visit Pak, SGPC to PM
Tribune News Service

Amritsar, June 4
In a letter to the Prime Minister, the SGPC chief yesterday urged him to grant permission to a jatha of Sikhs for visiting Pakistan to observe the martyrdom day of Guru Arjun Dev and the death anniversary of Maharaja Ranjit Singh on June 16 and June 29, respectively.

SGPC chief Kirpal Singh Badungar said jathas (comprising 500 to 1000 devotees) used to visit Pakistan on the above occasions every year. 


35 vehicles for Afghanistan flagged off

Wagah, June 4
A fleet of 35 utility commercial vehicles donated by the Indian Government to Afghanistan today crossed over to Pakistan en route to Afghanistan from the Indo-Pak joint checkpost at Wagah.

The fleet was flagged off by the MP, R.L. Bhatia.

The vehicle include 10 water tankers, and 15 garbage-collecting vehicles.

A 40-member Afghanistan team that was here to lead the fleet consisted of drivers and officials of the Afghanistan Government. Earlier the Indian Government had donated 304 heavy passenger buses to Afghanistan. PTI


Probe begins into sleaze scam
Tribune News Service

Amritsar, June 4
On the direction of the Punjab and Haryana High Court, Mr Karn Singh, DIG, CBI, (New Delhi), a Tamil Nadu cadre IPS officer, today started investigation in the infamous city cable sleaze scam, here today.

Before starting the investigation, Mr Karn Singh met senior police officers to get briefing on the matter.


Tributes paid to social worker
Tribune News Service

Patiala, June 4
“Dr Khushdeva Singh Leprosy Patients Colony will shortly be equipped with proper water supply, sewerage system and other necessary amenities of community centre,” said Mr Vishnu Sharma, Mayor Patiala Municipal Corporation, while paying tributes at the 101st birth anniversary celebrations of Padmashri Dr Maj. Khushdeva Singh, a great chest specialist, philanthropist and a renowned social worker of the region. Speaking as chief guest, he announced to donate 25 bags of cement towards the construction of Shri Krishna Temple nearing completion at the leprosy patients colony and assured further help, besides making an appeal to general public for the cause.

NTAS Director Pran Sabharwal, the convener of 101st birthday commemorative function, said that the names of three karamyogis of Patiala — Dr Khushdeva Singh, Dasondhi Ram Birji and Dr Jagdish Singh had become synonymous with service for humanity.

Presiding over the function, Mr Ved Parkash Gupta, chairman, Punjab Writers Forum and president, Patiala DCC (urban), announced that the idol of Radha-Krishna will be installed at the colony temple. He described Dr Khushdeva Singh as great campaigner against tuberculosis and leprosy.


Save Grain Campaign
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 4
Fifty farmers of Mauran village in Sangrur district have been trained to deal with insects, rodents and micro-organisms as part of the Central Government’s Save Grain Campaign.

The farmers purchased 50 metal bins of five quintals each with the Rs 22,500 stipend, according to the Regional Save Grain Campaign Assistant Director, Dr S.R. Singla, here yesterday.

The farmers were given certificates by the ministry yesterday during a valedictory function.


MLAs, Mayor laud role of Amritsar MC chief
Our Correspondent

Amritsar, June 4
MLAs, councillors, and Mayor Sunil Dutti lauded the efforts of Mr Jasbir Singh Bir for achieving a 96 per cent record budget target for the first time in the history of the MC, at a special farewell held for Mr Bir, Commissioner, Municipal Corporation, here yesterday.

During the past five years the budget achievements of the corporation ranged from 60 per cent to 82 per cent. The target achievement this time assumed added significance in view of the fact that octroi worth Rs 2 crore was lost due to its abolition on petrol and diesel, besides Rs 1 crore loss incurred due to the closure of trade in Pakistan. Another big loss to the corporation was of Rs 2 crore on material imported by BSNL from outside the district.

The corporation benefited from computerisation which organised various tasks of billings on civic amenities, mail and receipt monitoring. In addition to that a website of the MC here was also launched during this period. Computerised birth and death certificates would be a reality soon.

Efforts were made for solving traffic congestion problems near the Golden Temple with the help of a study conducted by a RITES team from Delhi. The project report was ready for implementation.

Apart from that an action plan was prepared on the project of processing solid waste management with expertise from two Dutch experts who surveyed and advised on the project. Installation of automatic waiting signals, clearing encroachments, road markings and creating parking zones were some of the improvements incorporated in the past one year during the tenure of Mr Bir.

Prominent among those present at the farewell were MLAs, Dr Rajkumar, Mr Harjinder Singh Thekedar and Mr Jugal Kishore Sharma along with the Opposition councillor leader, Mr Shwet Mallik, and many past and present councillors.


Two arrested in fake currency racket
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 4
The police here has arrested two persons for supplying fake currency and recovered fake currency of Rs 1. 35 lakh from their possession. Surinder Singh alias Shinda of Jandiali a business partner of Man Singh Garcha, a brother of former Akali minister Jagdish Singh Garcha.

Mr Kanwarjit Singh, SSP Vigilance, said that on a tip-off from Mandi Gobindgarh’s Union Bank of India branch cashier Darshan Dass that a person had approached him for circulating fake currency from his bank for 20 per cent commission. They gave him currency worth Rs 9, 000 initially. The rest of the currency was to be delivered today.

A trap was laid and the accused were arrested when they arrived at Heeran village residence of Darshan Dass today. Counterfeit currency and a .12 bore gun with four live cartridges were recovered from their possession. The Tata mobile car they arrived was also impounded.

The SSP said during preliminary investigations the accused — Mullanpur resident Gursharan Singh alias Goga, Shinda and Gurinderjit Singh alias Ginna — were sub agents supplying fake currency in this region. Their modus operandi was that they used to approach the cashiers of banks and took them into confidence by offering them commissions. The going rate was 20 per cent, he added.

Although he did not disclose the place from where the currency was procured from but pointed out that the currency originated from Pakistan and that those arrested had ISI links. Their supplier sold them the currency at the rate of 50 per cent of the total amount bought, he added.

Commenting on the currency, he said it was hard to spot discrepancies with naked eye. The only weak point was the faint printing of the security seal. In all, 49 notes of Rs 1,000 denomination, 92 of Rs 500 denomination and 400 notes of Rs 100 were recovered from them.

Surinder Singh has admitted that a business partner of Man Singh Garcha, Shinda is a brother of the sarpanch of Jandiali village. Their accomplice Ginna is at large and efforts were on to nab him, he said. 


8 travel agents booked for duping people
Our Correspondent

Jalandhar, June 4
The district police has booked eight travel agents in as many separate cases on the allegations of duping people of lakhs of rupees on the pretext of sending them abroad.

Mr Varinder Kumar, SSP, in a press note issued here yesterday, said following receipt of formal complaints, they had booked eight travel agents under Sections 406 and 420, IPC, in separate cases. They were identified as Neeraj Kumar of Santokhpura mohalla, Manjit Singh of Tanda road, Sukhram Chohan of Mehatpur, Des Raj of Katarpur, Mushtaq Masih of Pholriwal village, Charanjit Singh of Bhogpur, Davinder Kaur of Phillaur and Pawan Kumar of Nakodar.

The Economic Offence Wing of the district police had already conducted a thorough probe in this regard and efforts were being made to arrest them, he added.


Melon seller duped

Phagwara, June 4
Two car-borne thugs tricked a musk melon seller of Rs 1,000 in the name of religion.

They came to the seller for purchasing two-and-a-half quintal of musk melons to be distributed at a “chhabeel”.

They asked the seller to give them Rs 1,000 for buying sugar and asked the driver of the car to get the huge quantity of melons weighed in the meanwhile. They promised to pay for the melons as well as return the borrowed amount to the seller after fetching sugar, the police said.

The driver kept on getting the melons weighed and placing them in the vehicle but the two thugs never returned.

The two had hired the vehicle and had not paid for it as well, the police said. PTI


Man kills wife’s paramour
Our Correspondent

Amritsar, June 4
Husband and three members of the parental family of Ninder Kaur (24) killed her alleged lover Pargat Singh on June 2 night. The deceased was sleeping at his “chakki” when he was attacked and strangled.

According to police officials at first bricks were used to hit the victim. The face of the deceased was smashed before he was strangled.

Puran Singh, brother of the deceased, in a complaint to the Majitha police station under the Majitha police district late last evening alleged that Sukhdev Singh, Pargat Singh, both brothers, mother Swarn Kaur and husband Ranbir Sing Rana of Ninder Kaur killed his brother. He said his brother was allegedly having illicit relations with Ninder Kaur.

No arrest has been made. According to police officials the accused have absconded and raids were being made to nab them. A case has been registered under Section 302/34 of the IPC.


Bangladeshi national arrested
Our Correspondent

Amritsar, June 4
The BSF nabbed a Bangladeshi national late last evening when he was trying to sneak into the Indian territory from Pakistan.

According to a case registered at the Lopoke police station, about 25 km from here, the Company Commander, A-Company, 80 Battalion, Mr Buta Singh, said that he, along with other companions, had nabbed Allom, a resident of Sonababa, Jasror district in Bangladesh. He said the accused was trying to crossover in Rania village.

The Company Commander said the accused did not have passport or other documents. A watch and some Indian currency have been seized from the accused. The case has been registered under Sections 3/34/20 of the Indian Passport Act and the Foreign Act.


Peon booked for murder
Our Correspondent

Tarn Taran, June 4
Beant Singh of Bhucher Kalan village was murdered last night allegedly by a peon at Government Senior Secondary School, Shuchar Kalan. The police has registered a case under Section 302, IPC, against the accused who has reportedly absconded.

The police said both of them had been drinking together when they had an argument on some issue. The peon hit Beant Singh with an iron rod and he died on the spot.


Girl kills self after molestation bid
Our Correspondent

Fazilka, June 4
A 15-year-old girl of Ghattianwali Bodla village of the subdivision allegedly committed suicide following an attempt by two persons to molest her on Tuesday night.

According to an FIR lodged with the local Sadar police by Mr Bachan Singh, father of the girl, Jangir Singh and Kulwant Singh, both residents of same village, tried to molest his daughter following which she committed suicide.

It has been stated in the FIR that when the girl was asleep with her sister in the courtyard of her house, Jangir Singh jumped into the house and tried to molest her while his companion, Kulwant Singh stood guard outside. When the girl raised an alarm, both the miscreants fled.

The incident had a traumatising effect on the victim and she committed suicide by setting herself ablaze after dousing herself with kerosene. The Sadar police has registered a case against the suspects.


3 booked for beating up woman, son
Our Correspondent

Bathinda, June 4
The police today booked a man and his two sons for allegedly beating up a woman and her son last night.

As per information, a case under Sections 107, 151 of the CrPC has been registered against Heera Lal and his sons — Suresh and Rakesh — for allegedly beating up Kalawati and her son Gangaram (7). Later Heera Lal, Suresh and Rakesh were released on bail.

Ms Kalawati, who is undergoing treatment at the local Civil Hospital, has alleged that Heera Lal along with his two sons beat Gangaram. She said that one of their neighbours had given some audio-cassettes to Gangaram. However, Heera Lal alleged that Gangaram had stolen these cassettes from Heera Lal’s residence. He said Heera Lal had levelled false allegations against her son. She said Gangaram, somehow, managed to reach home, but Heera Lal and his sons came to their residence and started beating Gangaram in front of her. When she tried to save her child, she was also thrashed.


3 injured in clash
Our Correspondent

Tarn Taran, June 4
Two PSEB employees and a farmer were injured in a clash between farmers of Malmohri village and PSEB employees, posted at the 66 kv substation, Shakhchak. The Sadar police has registered a case in this regard. The injured have been admitted to hospital.

Sources said the farmers of the village, led by Mr Sukhwinder Singh, had gone to the substation to lodge a complaint where both parties had an argument, followed by the clash.


Furniture of trust office stolen
Our Correspondent

Barnala, June 4
Burglars have broken into the office of the local Dhanwantri Dharmarth Ayurvedic Trust and stolen furniture and some other items by breaking open the lock. The office is just at a stone’s throw from the Kotwali.

Mr Amrit Lal Sharma, secretary of the trust, has complained to the police about the theft.


Nakodar college girl tops B.Sc-II
Our Correspondent

Amritsar, June 4
Shasia YM of BD Arya Girls College Jalandhar cantonment and Manu Priya of KRM DAV College Nakodar (Jalandhar) topped the merit list (provisional) of BA–II and B.Sc –II examinations respectively. The examinations were conducted by Guru Nanak Dev University (GNDU) in April last.

Shasia obtained 1279 marks and Manu 1295 marks out of 1600 in their examinations. In BA-II Mithu Adhikari of HRM Jalandhar stood second and Kanu Priya of BDR Arya Girls College, Jalandhar cantonment got third position.

In B.Sc-II Neha Pachouri of HRM Jalandhar and Vandana SM DRSD College Pathankot stood second and third respectively.

As many as 15415 students appeared in BA –II out of which 12038 passed the examination. The pass percentage this year remained 78.09 per cent which is one per cent less than that last year. In B.Sc-II 1915 passed out of total 2369 appeared.


Protest against college fee hike
Our Correspondent

Bathinda, June 4
Members of the Pirthipal Randhawa Manch held a candle march in the city last evening in protest against an increase in the tuition fee of colleges.

The members said the hike by the state government was a step towards the privatisation of education, which meant that the poor would not be able to afford education for their children.

They said that instead of giving more facilities to girls and poor students, the government was trying to make education out of the reach of common people.

Mr Sukhmander Singh, a member of the manch, said while the government was spending lakhs of rupees on advertisements asking the people to send their daughters to schools and colleges, yet it had done away with free college education for the girls.


Students visit police station
Tribune News Service

Sangrur, June 4
As many as 54 students of the local General Gurnam Singh Public School, accompanied by their Vice-Principal Kulwinder Singh and some teachers, today visited a police station on the invitation of Mr A.S. Rai, SSP.

Addressing the students, Mr Rai said the idea was to make them aware of the functioning of a police station.

The students were taken to the SHO’s room, munshi’s room and “malkhana”. They were asked to provide information to the police about accidents.

The SSP also held an interactive session with the students in which they asked him questions related to crime, traffic and registration of an FIR.

Later the students were told about traffic rules. The SSP said students from other schools would also be invited.

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 |