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Dissidents causing setback to government, says Amarinder
Malout, December 11
The Punjab Chief Minister, Capt Amarinder Singh, today categorically stated that the party high command would decide the fate of Mrs Rajinder Kaur Bhattal, Agriculture, Minister, against whom charges would be framed on December 18 by the UT Special Court Judge, Chandigarh, Mr R.S. Baswana, in a case pertaining to corruption and criminal breach of trust registered against her.

The Punjab Chief Minister, Capt Amarinder Singh, the PPCC president, Mr H.S. Hanspal, and the Malout MLA, Mr Nathu Ram, at a Congress rally at Malout The Punjab Chief Minister, Capt Amarinder Singh (centre), the PPCC president, Mr H.S. Hanspal (left), and the Malout MLA, Mr Nathu Ram, at a Congress rally at Malout on Thursday.
— Photo by Kulbir Beera

Cong crisis to dominate SAD meeting today
Chandigarh, December 11
The political crisis in the ruling Congress in Punjab will dominate the meeting of the Political Affairs Committee of the Shiromani Akali Dal tomorrow. The meeting, first after the release of SAD president, Parkash Singh Badal from jail, will be held as Kalgidhar Niwas here around noon.

News Analysis
Governance a casualty in Punjab
Chandigarh, December 11
Punjab is caught in a whirlpool of political instability and administrative inconsistency. There is total absence of politico-administrative cohesiveness and decision-making. Over 300 files are piled up in the Chief Minister’s Office, some pending since March.

Fatehgarh Sahib


  20,000 posts of teacher lying vacant in Punjab
Chandigarh, December 11
Nearly 20,000 posts of teacher have been lying vacant in government schools across the state for a long time and the government has shown no inclination towards filling them. Making matters worse the government has put a ban on new recruitments and there is no likelihood of the same being lifted in the near future.

Panel returns tariff hike proposal to PSEB
Patiala, December 11
Tariff hike recommended by the Punjab State Electricity Board for 2004-05 has run into rough weather with the Punjab State Electricity Regulatory Commission sending it back to the Board directing it to furnish data justifying expenditures being incurred by it.

UK makes grant of asylum more difficult
Jalandhar, December 11
To curb illegal migration and discourage political asylum seekers, the British government has amended the Immigration and Asylum Act, under which any illegal entrant without valid passport or other travel document has to undergo imprisonment for six months and would face deportation from that country.


220 peaceniks leave for Pakistan
Wagah (Amritsar), December 11
The Chairman of the Pak-India People Forum for Peace and Democracy, Mr Ashok Mitra, said people from both the countries had started seeking a definite end to the 55- year-old hostility which had bogged down the two neighbours. Talking to newsmen before leading the largest ever group of 220 peaceniks to strengthen the people-to-people contact, the former West Bengal Finance Minister, Mr Mitra, pointed out that there were a large number of issues which bound the two nations.

Three-year-old Ritik, a tiny member of the peace delegation of the India-Pakistan People Forum for Peace and Democracy, at the Indo-Pak joint border checkpost in Wagah before departure for Pakistan on Thursday. — PTI photo

Three-year-old Ritik, a tiny member of the peace delegation of the India-Pakistan People Forum for Peace and Democracy, at the Indo-Pak joint border checkpost in Wagah

School, hotelier lay claim to land
Pathankot, December 11
A piece of prime land measuring about 13 marlas has become again a bone of contention between the management of the local Government Girls Senior Secondary School and the Punjab State Tubewell Corporation Chairman, Mr Sukhdev Wadera, who owns a palatial hotel adjoining the land.

Mulazam sangharsh panel stages dharna
Sangrur, December 11
Hundreds of employees of various government departments under the leadership of Mr Sukhdev Singh Barri, state convener of the Punjab Mulazam Sangharsh Committee today staged dharna in front of the district administrative complex, near the main bus stand, against the alleged “anti-people” and “anti-employees” policies of the state government.

SSP interacts with residents
Fatehgarh Sahib, December 11
Mr Shiv Kumar, SSP, yesterday held an interactive session with the prominent residents of the district at PWD Rest House, Sirhind to get the first hand information regarding problems concerning the Police Department as well as to seek their suggestions for the improvement in the policing and in maintaining law and order in the district.

Doctors ‘neglect’ rape victim
Amritsar, December 11
The five-year-old rape victim who was allegedly criminally assaulted by Narinder Singh has allegedly not been given proper treatment at the Government Civil Hospital where she was admitted after the incident.

Akhand path not to be organised in tents, says Tohra
Amritsar, December 11
The SGPC president, Mr Gurcharan Singh Tohra, said today that the akhand path of Guru Granth Sahib would not be held in tents during martyrdom day of Baba Zorawar Singh and Baba Fateh Singh (both sons of Guru Gobind Singh) on the occasion of Zor mela at Fatehgarh Sahib due to security reasons.

Ahmadiyas object to delay in issuing of visas
Qadian, December 11
Ahmadiya Muslims have taken a serious view of a “dilly-dallying” attitude over the issuance of visas to pilgrims from various countries, including Pakistan, Germany, the United Kingdom, African countries, the USA, Canada and France, who wish to attend the three-day 112th international Ahmadiya conference being held at Qadian, international centre of Ahmadiya Muslims, here from December 26.

Tributes paid to BSF personnel
Ferozepore, December 11
Officials of the Border Security Force, at an impressive function organised today at the headquarters of 124 Battalion in Mamdot on the occasion of Raja Mohtam Day, paid tributes to those gallant officers and jawans of 31 Battalion of the BSF who made the supreme sacrifice while defending the country on this day during the 1971 Indo-Pakistan conflict.

AIDS patient dies in hospital
Bathinda, December 11
The efforts of doctors of the local Civil Hospital to save Harbans Kaur (name changed), a 30-year-old widow, who was found HIV positive, failed today when she died here this evening.


Badal’s wife seeks anticipatory bail
Ropar, December 11
Ms Surinder Kaur Badal, wife of the former Chief Minister, Mr Parkash Singh Badal, who is a co-accused in the disproportionate assets case registered against them, moved an application for anticipatory bail before the District and Sessions judge, Ropar today.

High Court
Parties to appear before SSP
Chandigarh, December 11
City-based retired army officer’s struggle against the state machinery for protecting him and his family trudged towards a solution with a Division Bench of the High Court directing the parties to appear before Patiala’s Senior Superintendent of Police at 11 am on Friday.

5 sentenced for culpable homicide
Moga, December 11
A local court has held guilty all five accused, including a father and his two sons, for culpable homicide and sentenced them to rigorous imprisonments ranging from five to six years.


Farmers ignore PAU counsel, get good yield of Bt cotton
Mansa, December 11
As a section of the farmers of the district who have grown BT cotton, thereby defying the disapproval of the state government and Punjab Agricultural University, Ludhiana, have got a better yield as compared to those who have sown traditional varieties, the district agriculture authorities have suggested to the Punjab Government to allow the cultivation of BT cotton in a big way from next year to malco growers prosperous.


Plan to launch housing scheme
Chandigarh, December 11
The Punjab Police Housing Corporation plans to launch a housing scheme for all serving and retired officials of the government of Punjab, other states, central government, the UT Administration and their boards and corporations.


4 killed in road accidents
Bathinda, December 11
Four persons, including a woman, died while three others were seriously injured in road accidents that took place here and in Mansa district. Meanwhile, the death toll in yesterday’s road accident, that took place near Gurthari village rose to five as one more occupant of the car died late last night.

Dalits, Zamindars clash: Sec 307 added to FIR against 18
Sangrur, December 11
The district police yesterday added Section 307 (attempt to murder) of the IPC to the FIR registered against 18 persons (belonging to the Zamindars’ group) after an alleged clash between Dalits and Zamindars of Hasanpur village, near Dhuri, over a disputed piece of “shamlat” (common land) in the village on November 11 last.

Two sentenced to life for murdering servant
Sangrur, December 11
A local court today sentenced a proprietor of a chemist shop and a co-accused to life on the charge of abducting and murdering his servant. He suspected that the servant had illicit relationship with his wife.

Eight booked for duping villager
Barnala, December 11
The local police has unearthed a racket of duping innocent villagers of the region on the pretext of sending them abroad. Disclosing this Dr Narinder Bhargav, SSP, said police was able to solve about 12 fake NRI marriage cases after a complaint was lodged by Mr Joginderpal Singh.


Students boycott house test
Sangrur, December 11
A few students of Akal Degree College, Mastuana Sahib, 5 km from here, under the leadership of the Punjab Radical Students Union boycotted the house test for the second day today.

NGO gives woollens to needy students
Patiala, December 11
The Patiala Social Welfare Society, an NGO, organised a function at the Government Senior Secondary School, Sauja, here today to distribute woollens to needy students of the school. The woollens were given away by social activist Ms Satinder Kaur.

Gurmat Sangeet introduced in Punjabi varsity
Patiala, December 11
To promote and preserve cultural traditions of Punjab, Punjabi University has started Gurmat Sangeet as a subject at the academic level. The university has planned the subject from the primary level to the research level. Besides this, with the establishment of Gurmat Sangeet Chair, the development in the field of music tradition has got a further boost.

Cultural workshop for special kids
Patiala, December 11
Navjivini School of Special Education, Sullar in collaboration with the North Zone Cultural Centre is organising a cultural workshop for mentally challenged children at Amar Ashram from December 15 to 17.


WLL service soon
Dera Bassi, December 11
Telephone exchanges at Rajpura, Zirakpur, Dera Bassi and Lalru will introduce Wireless-in-Local Loop service shortly. With this facility the telephone subscribers will be able to use their CDMA handsets introduced by the Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited.

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