P U N J A B    S T O R I E S



SMO, other doctors found absent
Additional charge withdrawn from officer
Tribune News Service

Amritsar, November 8
The Civil Surgeon, Dr Yashpal Singla, has prepared a report about the habit of absenteeism among doctors and para-medical staff posted in the border belt. The report would be sent to the higher authorities recommending action against the erring health officials.

The report would be based on the surprise checking of community health centre (CMC), Khemkarn and other dispensaries where more than 90 per cent staff, including Senior Medical Officer (SMO) and other doctors were found absent yesterday morning. Dr Singla claimed that the raids were conducted following directions from his seniors on a specific complaint. He alleged that he had received a number of complaints that doctors and par-medical staff remained absent from duty most of the time in border belt which was confirmed during the surprise checking.

However, Dr Harjap Singh Mahl, SMO, who has been stripped of the additional charge of CHC Gharyala following the surprise raid, alleged that he and his staff had reached the CHC, Khemkarn by 9.20 am (only 20 minutes late). He alleged that Dr Singla had conducted raid with a specific motive to take ‘punitive action’. He, however, admitted that most of the staff come to Khemkarn from Amritsar and its adjoining areas covering about 70 km daily.

Dr Singla said that he would write to Ms Anjli Bhawra, Managing Director, Punjab Health System Corporation, recommending strict action against the officials found absent during the raid.

Earlier too, many doctors and para-medical staff in the border belt were found absent during the raids conducted by the Vigilance Bureau and predecessor of Mr Singla.

Meanwhile, Dr Singla has issued instructions to all SMOs, doctors and para-medical staff to provide better health facilities to the residents of border belt. Any dereliction of duty would be viewed seriously.


14 more SPs transferred

Chandigarh, November 8
The Punjab Government tonight transferred 14 police officers of the rank of Superintendent of Police, an official release said here tonight.

So far 177 officers of the Senior Superintendent of Police, Superintendent of Police and Deputy Superintendent of Police ranks had been transferred in five lists issued by the state government.

The officers transferred tonight have been directed to join at there new places of posting by tomorrow noon even though the day happens to be a Sunday.

The order said that the officers have been posted in different wings, including Headquarters, Traffic, Punjab Armed Police, Detective and Vigilance of the Police Department.

The name of the officers transferred with the new places of posting are:

Gurmail Singh PPS, SP Security, Raj Bhavan, Punjab Chandigarh. Gurdial Singh PPS, SP Traffic, Ludhiana.

Surjit Singh PPS, SP (Operations), Ferozepore. Shammi Kumar PPS, SP (Headquarter), Kapurthala.

L K Yadav IPS, SP (Headquarter) Patiala. Baljit Singh Randhawa PPS, SP (Detective), Tarn Taran.

Pritpal Singh Virk PPS, SP (Detective), Sangrur. Amarjit Singh PPS, SP (Detective), Batala.

Amit Parshad IPS, Vigilance Bureau, Chandigarh. Gautam Cheema IPS, Vigilance Bureau, Chandigarh.

Iqbal Singh PPS, SP Crime, Punjab Chandigarh. Baljinder Singh Grewal PPS, Commandent 6th IRB Ladda Kothi.

Harcharan Singh Bhullar PPS, SP (Detective) Fatehgarh Sahib. Ashok Bath PPS, AC 27th Battalion PAP Jalandhar. — PTI


Probe into ‘fake encounter’ case begins

Moga, November 8
Ten years after a militant was killed at the hands of security forces in Punjab, the state police has started a probe into the incident under directions from the Punjab and Haryana High Court.

A Head Constable of the state police alleged in a writ petition in 1998 that Nachhatar Singh was killed by the police in a fake encounter in Moga district in April, 1993.

Superintendent of Police (crime branch), Surinder Pal Parmar recorded the statements of four police officials, including two Assistant Sub-Inspectors and two Head Constables, besides visiting the site of the alleged fake encounter near Takhanvadh village.

Mr Parmar also recorded the statement of Mr Dalip Kaur, mother of the slain militant.

In the writ petition, Head Constable Kasturi Lal alleged that in 1993, he was a police commando here and Ms Dalip Kaur had approached him to try to persuade her son to give up militant activities and join the mainstream.

The petitioner said he handed over Nachhatar Singh to the Mehna police here on April 29, 1993.

He said in the petition, he was called after two days by then SSP of Faridkot and the SP (Operation) at Mehna police station and in Kasturi Lal’s presence, Nachhatar Singh was allegedly tortured and he later died in police custody. — PTI


DYFI convention
Youth urged to resist globalisation
Our Correspondent

Amritsar, November 8
On the third day of the national convention of Democratic Youth Federation of India (DYFI) called upon the youth to be in the forefront to resist the imperialist globalisation.

A former vice-president of DYFI, Mr Sunit Chopra, in his key note address at the international seminar on ‘globalisation and its impact on youth’ said that the slogans declaring the benefit of globalisation, free market, outsourcing were nothing but a cover up for the impeliarist design to indulge in looting the third world countries. he demanded lifting of visa and travel restriction by the rich countries.

Referring to the disastrous impact of privatisation and globalisation, Mr Chopra said while the wheat was being exported at the rate of Rs 4.30 kg but it was being supplied to the poor families at the rate of Rs 6.30.

The delegates from Vietnam Sri Lanka and Korea expressed solidarity against the imperialist forces.

Earlier, the seventh national convention of the DYFI yesterday passed 22 political, economical and social resolutions on the second day of the three-day meeting here to mark the anniversary of the October Revolution.

It pointed out that poverty, unemployment, insecurity and tension were intrinsic evils that characterised capitalism. Clarifying the concept of socialism the resolution added that it was the quest for a new social form which set free development from profiteering.

On the right to strike, another resolution of the DYFI stated that with economic liberalisation there were efforts by vested interests to curtail the rights of people, especially the working class.

In another resolution, it came down heavily on the “anti-people” policies of the NDA government, which, in the name of globalisation and privatisation, had ignored the principle of self reliance, it said.

Disinvestment, growing industrial sickness and slowing down of economy had led to an increase in those living below the poverty line. Another resolution said the government was “gifting away” the profit-making units that were national assets and rendering thousands of workers jobless.


Surjeet predicts BJP debacle in poll
Our Correspondent

Amritsar, November 8
The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) will suffer a serious setback in the Assembly elections in five states next month, claimed CPM General Secretary Harkishan Singh Surjeet, here today.

Talking to mediapersons at the venue of the national convention of the Democratic Youth Federation of India, Mr Surjeet pointed out that the Congress was likely to retain power in all five states and the BJP would suffer a debacle. He said the stage had not yet come to form the third front.

Addressing a gathering at the Wagah joint checkpost, CPM leader and MP Sitaram Yechury said the youth in India and Pakistan did not favour hostility and they would like to improve relations. Mr Surjeet, Capt Lakshami Sehgal and Mr Yechury laid wreaths at the memorial built at the Wagah border in memory of hundreds of Indians and Pakistanis killed during Partition.


SAD to field Tohra for SGPC presidentship
Our Correspondent

Jalandhar, November 8
SAD Secretary General and Union Minister Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa today said Mr Gurcharan Singh Tohra would be the party’s official candidate for the presidentship of the SGPC during the elections to be held on November 20. He said in case the Vigilance Bureau decided to arrest SAD chief Parkash Singh Badal in a case pertaining to possessing assets disproportionate to his known source of income, it would be for the party chief alone to either appoint an acting president or to constitute a presidium to run the daily affairs of the party.

Addressing a press conference here, Mr Dhindsa said all the issues pertaining to the SGPC executive poll would be discussed during the meeting of the political affairs committee on November 16. The list of proposed candidates for the SGPC poll, would only be issued by Mr Badal, he added.

He denied reports that there were differences in the party on the leadership issue. Since the recruitment process was over, office-bearers would be appointed soon, he said.


Death penalty for rapists sought
Sushil Goyal
Tribune News Service

Vairoke (Moga), November 8
The Lok Bhalai Party, at its women’s conference here today, demanded the enactment of a law for awarding the death sentence to rapists, equal status to women in society, stoppage of female foeticide, free education for girls, strict action against NRI bridegrooms for abandoning local girls and dowry-seekers.

Mr Balwant Singh Ramoowalia, national President of the party said the party wanted to bring transparency in Punjab politics by exposing real issues like dowry, harassment of women and locking up of Punjabi youths in foreign jails. He said the transfer of Chandigarh to Punjab or implementation of the Anandpur Sahib resolution were not real issues.

Mr Ramoowalia demanded 50 per cent share from the property of husbands for married women seven days after marriage. He said an FIR should be lodged against foreign-based Punjabi bridegrooms if any of them failed to invite his wife in 180 days to the country in which he was residing.


Chair set up at Canadian varsity
Our Correspondent

Amritsar, November 8
An Indo-Canadian research Chair has been established at the University College of Fraser Valley, Canada, to undertake research, promote cooperation between communities and advance international trade and development. This was stated by Dr H.A. Bassford, who visited Guru Nanak Dev University here today to discuss the higher education systems in Canada and India.

He is leading a three-member delegation of the university. Other members of the delegation are Mr Yvon Dandurand, and Mr Parm Balns. Dr S.P. Singh, Vice-Chancellor of Guru Nanak Dev University, said the university could enter into an agreement in the areas of languages, economics, management and cultural, religious and historical studies with the University College of Fraser Valley.

Another delegation from Canada, led by Dr Leslie Triplett of Kwantlen University College, Surrey, British Columbia, visited the university today.

Dr Arvind Bubber, a member of the delegation, said Kwantlen University intended to enter into a general agreement with Guru Nanak Dev University on exchange programmes for faculty and students.


Lakhs take part in Gurpurb celebrations
Tribune Reporters

Amritsar, November 8
The SGPC, the Guru Nanak Gurpurb Committee and the sangat took part in ‘parkash utsav’ celebrations of Guru Nanak Dev here today. Lakhs took a holy dip in the holy sarovar. The display of artifacts and jewellery was held at Darbar Sahib. President Dr A.P.J. Abdul Kalam, US President George. W.Bush and Ms Hillary Rodham Clinton, US Senator, sent their greetings on the occasion. Mr Manjit Singh Calcutta, honorary secretary of the SGPC, welcomed the gesture.

PHAGWARA: Gurpurb was celebrated with fervour here on Saturday. A function was held at the Model Town gurdwara. A sant sammelan was held at Guru Ravi Das Gurdwara. All gurdwaras were illuminated.

ABOHAR: Gurdwaras were decorated since yesterday to celebrate Gurpurb here. Ragi jathas and female devotees led the gathering in kirtan darbars.

FARIDKOT: Gurpurb was celebrated with enthusiasm and fervour here on Saturday. Akhand path bhog was organised in all Sikh shrines and langar was served. A nagar kirtan procession was taken out.

MOGA: Thousands took a holy dip on Gurpurb in sacred sarovars of historic gurdwaras on Saturday morning. Devotees thronged gurdwaras and attended kirtans and akhand path bhog ceremonies. Langars were also arranged.

SHIMLA: Gurpurb was celebrated in Himachal Pradesh with religious fervour and gaiety on Saturday. Special congregations were held at gurdwaras.


Mann apologises to party men, crisis over
Tribune News Service

Jalandhar, November 8
The organisational crisis in the Shiromani Akali Dal (Amritsar) following resignations by a number of senior party office-bearers is finally over with the intervention of the party president, Mr Simranjit Singh Mann, who also offered an apology to SAD (A) workers for his “rude” behaviour.

Mr Mann said the resignations of party office-bearers, including Mr Paramjit Singh Johal, Mr Jagir Singh Wadala and Mr Kashmir Singh, had been rejected.

He said all grouses and doubts of party leaders had been removed during a meeting convened at party general secretary Charan Singh Lohara’s residence last night. “I also apologised for what was considered to be my rude behaviour with them,” said Mr Mann.


Four booked in widow suicide case
Our Correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh, November 8
The local police has booked four persons of Railan village in Ropar district under Section 306 of the IPC for allegedly forcing a widow to commit suicide. The action has been taken on the complaint of Mr Balwant Singh Ramoowalia, President, Lok Bhalai Party, who had brought this to the notice of the Senior Superintendent of Police, Sangrur, after going through the columns of Ludhiana Tribune.

Referring to the information received from Ms Manpreet Kaur, a resident of local ward No. 2, Mr Ramoowalia had informed the police that a widow, Surinder Kaur, mother of the girl, had committed suicide on July 26 after being allegedly compelled into doing so by Gurvinder Singh, Surmukh Singh, Sukhwant Kaur and Gurinder Singh, husband, father-in-law, mother-in-law and brother-in-law of Manpreet Kaur, respectively.

The Superintendent of Police, Sangrur, Mr Amandeep Rai, had deputed Mr Rachhpal Singh, Deputy Superintendent of Police, Malerkotla, to investigate the case, which led to the registration of the case.

Investigations by Mr Rachhpal Singh revealed that Ms Manpreet Kaur was married to Gurbinder Singh of Railan village on February 6. Ms Surinder Kaur had given Rs 3.5 lakh in dowry. Though she had to dispose of a major portion of her property for the marriage, the suspects were not satisfied and started harassing Manpreet Kaur.

Temple inaugurated amid tight security
Our Correspondent

Ram Tirath (Amritsar), November 8
Mr Joginder Singh Mann, Minister for Social Welfare, Punjab, today said all Mazhabi and Dalit Sikhs were descendants of Bhagwan Balmiki even though they supported “Sikh outlook”.

He was here to attend the inaugural function of the new Balmiki Temple to be built in the historical sarovar of the ancient Sri Ram Tirath Temple during the week-long “Ram Tirath Mela” here today.

A dancing girl, songs and loud music marked the inauguration of the Balmiki Temple amidst tight security here today.

The religious function turned out to be a political rally for Mr Mann and Mr Sardool Singh, Punjab Minister for Excise and Taxation and chairman of Ram Tirath Development Board.

On the other hand, some mahants, claiming to be descendants of caretakers of the temple for the past 500 years, opposed the inauguration.

Mahant Baldev Giri, Mahant Bhan Dass, Mahant Ram Lubhiya, Sant Suraj Parkash and others said they would file a case in this regard. Both opposing parties charged each other with illegal encroachment on temple premises. The court had favoured the mahants against the Dhuna Sahib Balmiki Trust headed by Deputy Mayor Om Parkash Gabbar in a case of disputed territory.

Nearly 300 police personnel were on duty as lakhs of devotees visited the holy premises on the occasion of the Ram Tirath Mela. Mr Sardool Singh announced that an inquiry would be initiated into the embezzlement of Rs 35 lakh given to the Ram Tirath Trust by two former Congress Chief Ministers, Mr Harcharan Singh Brar and Ms Rajinder Kaur Bhattal.


No gambling, live dances at Jor Mela this year
Our Correspondent

Fatehgarh Sahib, November 8
The district administration will not allow gambling and live dances during the annual Shaheedi Jor Mela at Fatehgarh Sahib, this year.

The mela is held in the memory of younger Sahibjadas of Guru Gobind Singh, who were bricked alive here. Lakhs of devotees throng the gurdwara from all over the world to pay obeisance to the Sahibjadas.

The event would be observed in a religious spirit, as per sentiments of the devotees, said Mr S.K.Ahluwalia, Deputy Commissioner, while presiding over a meeting of district officials, convened here on Thursday, to finalise the arrangements for the event.

The Deputy Commissioner said the district administration would not permit circus, swings, live dances, gambling and other entertainment stalls to operate within the surroundings of the gurdwara. He said the devotees came from far-flung areas of the country and such stalls gave a poor impression and hurt their sentiments.

He said all wine shops would remain closed during the mela and it would be ensured that no intoxicant was sold in the mela. He said for the convenience of the devotees, special parking sites had been earmarked. To control the flow of traffic, service roads would be utilised and repair work on all roads was in progress.

He said an exhibition depicting achievements of the state government in different fields and public oriented schemes initiated by various departments would be organised. He said the Public Relation Department would organise a special light and sound programme, “Sirhind ki Dastan”.

Mr Ahluwalia said all basic civic amenities like toilets, drinking water and cleanliness would be ensured and five enquiry centers and dispensaries would work round the clock.

Addressing the meeting, Mr Shiv Kumar, SSP, said that police would make elaborate security arrangements so that the devotees could pay obeisance without any fear.

He said nakas, check-barriers and police posts would be erected and policemen in plain clothes deputed to nab criminals. He said the traffic would be regulated through link roads and two special buses would ply till the gurdwara for the elderly

Mr Mohinder Pal Arora, ADC, Mr B.S.Shergill, ADC(D), Mr. Navjot Pal Singh Randhawa and SDMs also addressed the meeting.


Minister, Bhardwaj lock horns over disputed land
Bipin Bhardwaj

Zirakpur, November 8
Controversy over a piece of prime land in Nabha village along the Chandigarh-Patiala highway took a new turn after the Punjab Minister for Public Grievances and the Deputy Chairman of the Punjab State Planing Board exchanged heated arguments.

The incident occurred in the wee hours on Thursday when Dr Ramesh Dutt Sharma, Punjab Minister for Public Grievances, who reportedly accompanied Ms Manveen Ghai, director of Titan Motors (P) Limited, her mother and Col. J. S Bal (retd.), President of Rashtriya Raksha Dal, Punjab, to the disputed site. After some time, Mr R.R. Bhardwaj, Deputy Chairman of the Punjab State Planing Board, along with his security guards and ASI Jai Kishan reached there.

While talking to Chandigarh Tribune, Dr Sharma said Ms Manveen Ghai and her mother approached him regarding high-handedness on part of an alleged “politician-police land mafia”.

The minister claimed that he along with the women went to the site at around 12.30 am on Thursday and noticed that around 50 men had tresspassed the disputed site and were busy loading goods in a truck. Some of the men were using a welding instrument to cut heavy iron sheets.

‘‘ I rang up the Punjab Police control room and got the telephone number of Dera Bassi police station. Subsequently, the in charge of Zirakpur police post was informed, following which ASI Jai Kishan reached the spot and the matter was brought to his notice’’ he added.

Around 4.15 am, Mr R. R. Bhardwaj who was accompanied by Zirakpur police post in charge, reached the spot and used abusive language with me,” the minister claimed.

On the other hand, Mr R.R. Bhardwaj, while denying the allegations, said he had high regards for Dr Sharma.

‘‘ Dr Sharma is my close friend and I would always respect him,” added Mr Bhardwaj.

He, however, alleged that Ms B.S. Guraya had been misleading the minister and the police. Mr Bhardwaj also made it clear that his son Puneet Bhardwaj had purchased the land from Ms Jaswinder Kaur, a Chandigarh resident, after completing all legal formalities.

Meanwhile, Ms Manveen Ghai, while addressing a press conference in Chandigarh, alleged that Mr Bhardwaj had been staking his claim to the undivided piece of land under police protection.

She alleged that four representation had been made to top police officials, including the DGP, SSP, Patiala, DSP of Dera Bassi and SHO of Zirakpur, to register an FIR in this regard but to no avail. Instead of registering a case against them, the police registered an FIR against Col G. S Guraya (retd), Mr B.S. Bedi, chairman and managing director of Titan Motors (P) Limited and two others.

She also alleged that Mr Gurjit Singh, in charge Zirakpur police post, let off six persons nabbed by her security guards while stealing goods from the store of the company.

‘‘Mr Gurjit Singh also released vehicles — a Maruti car (HYX-8270), two motor cycles (PB-70-2628) and (PB-70-1490), a truck (PB-12B-9866), a tractor trailer (PB-39-1572) — and some stolen goods that were recovered from the thieves,’’ Ms Ghai alleged.

Mr Manmohan Kumar Sharma, DSP Dera Bassi, said he was studying the case. Mr Tajinder Singh, SHO Dera Bassi, expressed ignorance about the case and Mr Gurjit Singh was not available for comments.


Punjab Governor opens cancer hospital
Tribune News Service

Muktsar, November 8
The Governor of Punjab, Justice O.P. Verma (retd), today inaugurated Adesh Charitable Cancer Hospital here. The hospital has been set up at a cost of Rs 5.50 crore by the local Adesh Group of Institutions.

Addressing the gathering, Justice Verma said since the treatment of the cancer was costly, the social and voluntary organisations should come forward to open more cancer hospitals in the state. He said every year in Punjab, about 20,000 persons suffered from this dreaded disease.

The Governor also called upon the non-government and voluntary organisations to work jointly with government institutions to curb cancer.

Mr Jagmeet Singh Brar, MP, lauded the role of the Adesh group for playing a vital role in serving the people. Mr Usha R. Sharma, Deputy Commissioner, also spoke on the occasion.

Dr H.S. Gill, Chairman of the Adesh group, said this hospital would prove a premier cancer treatment centre in the region.


Press must be allowed to work freely: Amarinder

Chandigarh, November 8
The Punjab Chief Minister, Capt Amarinder Singh, today expressed concern over the events in Chennai wherein the top Editors and journalists of ‘The Hindu’ have been targeted.

Terming the action against the Editors of The Hindu as undemocratic and an unprecedented violation of the freedom of Press, the Chief Minister said the Press must at all times be allowed to work and express itself freely and fearlessly. — TNS


Saini  Chairman of Coop bank

Dera Bassi, November 8
Mr Sukhbir Singh Saini, a general secretary of the District Congress Committee, Patiala, was elected the Chairman of the Dera Bassi Cooperative Agriculture Development Bank, here yesterday.

Mr Saini was elected as the Director for the local zone of the bank at an election held on October 9. He has also been a Director of the bank from 1990 to 1995.

The subdivision was divided into six zones that include Dera Bassi, Amlala, Samgoli, Lalru, Tiwana and Handesra. Out of the six posts of directors, Mr Sukhbir Singh Saini, Mr Chetan Singh, Mr Prem Chand and Mr Basant Singh, all belonging to the Congress were elected unopposed for Dera Bassi, Amlala, Samgoli and Handesra zones respectively.

The Shiromani Akali Dal had claimed only the Tiwana zone with the victory of Mr Jarnail Singh, a SAD candidate. Mr Balbir Singh, another Akali candidate contesting from the Lalru zone, withdrew his nomination paper alleging rigging by Congress workers.

While talking to the Chandigarh Tribune, Mr Saini said he would leave no stone unturned in solving the problems of farmers besides giving them the best possible facilities in bank-related works.


Two killed in mishap

Ropar, November 8
Two occupants of a Maruti-800 car (CH-03K-9478) Roshal Lal of Kalka and Hari Singh of Sundernagar, were killed when the vehicle in which they were traveling strayed from the road near Rangilpur village on the Ropar-Chandigarh road and hit a tree. The third inmate of the car, Raj Kumar, was injured critically. OC


Jawan's body brought home
Our Correspondent

Amritsar, November 8
The body of Jawan Satinderpal Singh today reached Malukey, his native village, with full military honours. Satinderpal was killed by militants by an improvised explosive device fitted in a jeep that blew up, killing two jawans and injuring three others of 37 Assam Rifles in Imphal.


Interim stay plea dismissed
Our Correspondent

Kharar, November 8
Mr Ranjan Kumar Khullar, Civil Judge Kharar, has dismissed an interim stay application filed by Mr Karnail Singh of Ratwara Sahib regarding the dispute pertaining to two trusts of Ratwara Sahib village here.

Mr Karnail Singh of Ratwara Sahib village had filed the suit for a permanent injunction restraining the defendants from illegally interfering in the affairs of Vishav Gurmati Roohani Mishan Charitable Trust and Atarn Marge Spiritual Scientific Educational Charitable Trust.

The defendants include Bibi Ranjit Kaur, Manjit Singh, and Nirapjit Singh, Bibi Baldev Gill and Bhai Mann Singh Granthi of Ratwara Sahib.

The plaintiff had pleaded that he was the vice-chairman of the two trusts and was appointed so by the trust members on November 14, 2002. The two trusts were formed by Late Baba Waryam Singh. In his last wish, Baba Waryam Singh wanted Baba Lakhbir Singh to be appointed chairman of the trusts.

After the death of Baba Waryam Singh Bibi Ranjit Kaur who was the chairperson of the two trusts, relinquished the post and made Baba Lakhbir Singh the chairman and plaintiff vice-chairman of the trusts.

However, Bibi Ranjit Kaur again declared herself as the chairman of the two trusts and removed the plaintiff from his post of vice-chairman.

The court has dismissed the application under Section 39 rules 1 and 2 Cr PC and fixed February 14, 2004 for the production of evidence by the plaintiff.



Bar association’s plea
Our Correspondent

Dera Bassi, November 8
Members of the Dera Bassi Bar Association yesterday demanded a camp court within the tehsil complex for the convenience of litigants and general public.

In a press conference, members of the association claimed that people from areas bordering Haryana have to travel about 150 km (up and down) to Rajpura to appear before the court for their cases.

For this they have to change buses to reach Rajpura and sometimes their visit to the court yields no result even after wasting their time, said Mr Anmol Singh, president of the association.

He said after awarding a status of Subdivision to the township, the office of Subdivisional Magistrate had been created but a court had not come up so far.


Govt procures 4,56,336 MT paddy

Fatehgarh Sahib, November 8
The district has not only surpassed the target of procurement of paddy but has purchased 65207 MT of more paddy as compared to last year. The procurement of paddy has been completed in the district and 4,56,336 MT of paddy has been purchased by various government. agencies in the district, whereas last year 3,91,129 MT paddy was purchased, said Mr S.K.Ahluwalia, Deputy Commissioner, in a press note issued here today.

Mr Ahluwalia said the procurement was made in a very smooth manner for the first time and no incident of any harassment of farmers, commission agents and rice millers was reported in the district. He said various farmers organisations had appreciated the administration and government. for making excellent arrangements. He said timely payment and MSP to farmers was ensured. Mr Ahluwalia said besides this, other basic civic facilities were also made available. He said that special monitoring of the procurement staff was done and no case of corrupt practices was reported.

He said the District Food and Civil Supplies Department purchased 52078 MT, Markfed 89824 MT,Punsup 88784 MT, Warehousing Corporation. 90,956 MT, Punjab Agro 72393 MT and the FCI 9,096 MT. He said the procured paddy had been lifted from the mandis and stored in rice mills for milling.


Six booked for duping people

Amritsar, November 8
Six persons were today booked for allegedly duping many persons of thousands of rupees.

Those arrested have been identified as Karam Singh of Jagdev Kalan village, Charanjit Singh of Pandori Singla village, Tarsem Singh of Kapurthala, Kuldip Singh of Mohkampura, Satpal Singh and Tarsem Singh of Pandori Waraich village. A case under Sections 420, 388, 389, 148, 149 of the IPC has been registered in this regard. — TNS


Govt College wins youth fest trophy
Our Correspondent

Amritsar, November 8
The Government College of Education, Jalandhar, bagged the overall trophy in the Guru Nanak Dev University youth festival for “education” colleges. The DAV College of Education for Women and Khalsa College of Education, both of Amritsar, stood second. The MGN College of Education, Jalandhar, stood third.

The Government College of Education, Jalandhar, bagged first position in painting and landscape, sketching, poster making, quiz and rangoli contests. Students competed in 21 disciplines in the festival.

The chief guest, Dr Amarjit Singh Dua, Dean College Development Council, Guru Nanak Dev University, awarded trophies to winners.


Reprieve for B.Tech student
Monica Ahluwalia

Patiala, November 8
Vikas, a student of B.Tech Department of Punjabi University, has alleged that the university authorities had spoiled his professional career due to its long procedure in declaring the revised results of fourth semester conducted in May, 2002.

Vikas had been declared failed in his fourth semester. Following this, he was able to get a “reappear” award after a revision of the result of the fourth semester. The process took one year as a result of which he had to take the fourth semester examination twice.

The student has now decided to approach the National Human Rights Commission claiming the manner in which the university authorities had gone about assessing his examination had resulted in the loss of one academic session besides mental agony to him.

Earlier, Vice-Chancellor Sawarn Singh Boparai had overruled the decision of the Moderation Committee, which was constituted to award grace marks to the students who were made to answer questions carrying 23 marks out of syllabus.

The student had appeared in the fourth semester examination conducted by the university in May, 2002. Since the fourth semester examination was not declared till November, the students were given a provisional admission in the fifth semester.

When the result of the fourth semester examination was finally declared in November, Vikas was declared failed. Following which, the university authorities immediately cancelled his provisional admission in the fifth semester and did not allow him to appear in the external examination, which was to be held in the second week of December.

Again, he appeared in the fourth semester examination in May, 2003 and was a given provisional admission in the fifth the semester. On November 4, 2003 the university revised the result of the fourth semester of all candidates on the complaints filed by the students to the moderation committee. According to the revised result, Vikas, who was earlier declared failed, was now asked “re-appear” in the fourth semester .

The university authorities have revised the results of the fourth semester as the students alleged that out of seven subjects university failed to allot teachers for three subjects i.e. electronics, signal system and instrumental lab for nearly two and a half months.

The students added that only 17 days of teaching was held for electronics and instrumental lab and 30 per cent of the course was covered and later questions carrying 13.5 marks were outside syllabus in paper IV (signal system). Following this, the students complained and the issue was put before the Moderation Committee on November, 2002.

The committee rejected the recommendation of paper setter to give grace marks to the students in paper 3 and paper 4. Meanwhile, three students of the department filed a petition against the decision of the Moderation Committee.

However, the Vice-Chancellor intervened and over-ruled the decision of the committee and directed it to give grace marks to the students. Due to these grace marks, Vikas who was earlier declared failed by varsity has now been awarded a “reappear” result.

Khalsa College establishes Centre of Excellence
Our Correspondent

Patiala, November 8
The local Khalsa College has established a Centre of Excellence in the field of computer education. It is the only institution in the city and surrounding areas which is running three vocational subjects in the field of computer science and applications sponsored by the UGC.

This was stated by the Principal of the college, Dr Harbir Singh, here yesterday. Dr Harbir Singh said the college focused on short-term courses under this scheme. Earlier, a free workshop on computer application was also organised.

During the workshop, the students were told about four fields of computer hardware, including assembling, software installation, networking and trouble shooting.


‘Techfair 2003’ concludes
Our Correspondent

Fatehgarh Sahib, November 8
The two-day “Techfair 2003”, a national-level technical festival, at Baba Banda Singh Bahadur Engineering College, Fatehgarh Sahib concluded yesterday.

Addressing the students on the concluding day, the Principal of the college, Dr D.S. Hira said the all-around development of the individuals required conducting such seminars and functions where students could not only display their talents but also learn from others and enhance their knowledge of the dynamically evolving world of technology.

He said these opportunities must be created for the budding engineers where they get a chance to develop and display their talents. He informed the gathering that the college had already held two Techfairs. He thanked the students from 44 colleges from Madhya Pardesh, Rajasthan, Uttar Pardesh, Delhi, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Chandigarh and Punjab for cooperating in organising the Techfair.

Prof J.S. Oberoi, the coordinator of the Techfair and Prof Gurpal Singh, coordinator of the college cultural affairs, while expressing similar views, maintained that Techfair gave the students a chance to present their technical and heuristic abilities.


Privatisation of govt polytechnics opposed
Our Correspondent

Patiala, November 8
The Punjab Polytechnic Engineers Association yesterday condemned the proposal of the state government to hand over government polytechnics and ITIs to the private sector.

The convener of the Joint Action Committee, Mr Gurbakhshish Singh, said the lower strata of Society was already finding it difficult to admit their wards in government polytechnics and ITI’s. He said in case these institutions were privatised now, the fee structure would go up even more to the detriment of the poor.

All officials of the association unanimously resolved to oppose the privatisation of Khoonimjra, Lehragaga, Dina Nagar, Ananadpur Sahib and Bikhiwind government polytechnics and ITIs. Members of the association said they would fight against the “anti-poor and anti-education” policies of the state government.

The members further added that they would intensify their struggle if the state government failed to resolve the issue.

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