R E G I O N A L   B R I E F S


: The Cane Sangharsh Committee of the SAD (Amritsar) staged a dharna in front of the main gate of Nahar Sugar Mills here on Thursday to protest against the non-payment of sugarcane at Rs 20 per quintal. The sugarcane was procured by the sugar mill last year at the rate of Rs 100 per quintal, whereas the farmers were paid Rs 80 per quintal and the balance of Rs 20 was promised to be paid later, which has not been paid as yet. They raised slogans against the Central and state governments and the mill management. Addressing the gathering, the chairman of the committee demanded payment of the balance amount with interest. Mr Satnam Singh Bheru, president, All-India Bharati Kisan Union, criticised the anti-farmer policies of the state government.

POLICE-PUBLIC MEETS: To review the law and order situation and the problems of the people, Mr B.S. Randhawa, SHO, who has taken over the charge recently, called a meeting of the councillors, shopkeepers, sarpanches and media persons on Thursday evening. Mr Jeevan Kumar, president, Arhtiyas Association, pointed out that a police party from Ludhiana picked up at lease 12 youths and made searches in their houses without informing the local police or the councillors of their respective wards. The SHO assured to take up the matter with the higher authorities.

Body building: The Amateur Body Building Association of Fatehgarh Sahib district is organising the second Mr Junior and the third Mr Senior Fatehgarh Body Building competitions in Mandi Gobindgarh on January 25. Mr Deepak Sapra, chairman of the club, said in a press release here on Friday that Mr Joginder Pal Singla and Mr Jagmeet Singh Sahota will be the chief guest and guest of honour, respectively.

WOMAN HELD: Mahbooba, wife of Abdul Rasheed, a resident of Bahila village under Shipora Saula tehsil in Srinagar, was arrested at Attari railway station while boarding Samjhauta Express with a fake passport on Thursday. This is the first such case since the resumption of the bi-weekly Samjhauta Express.

PLEA: Mr Tarlochan Singh, Chairman, National Commission for Minorities (NCM), has urged the SGPC to take up the matter regarding the banning of headgear in schools of France with the Secretary General of the UNO. The NCM has prepared a three-page note on this issue, which is likely to be submitted to the UNO, incorporating the Declaration of 1981.

: Flag hoisting and singing of patriotic songs marked the Republic Day eve celebrations at Pearls Nursery School, Gurdev Nagar, here on Friday. The kids came to the school wearing tricolour caps and badges as they carried the National Flag in their hands. Mr Rajnish Dhaliwal, chief guest, unfurled the flag as the tiny tots sang patriotic songs like Nanna munna rahi hun and Vande Mataram. Teachers told the kids about the importance of Republic Day. The programme concluded with the singing of the National Anthem.

Basant Panchmi: A three-day religious festival in connection with the Basant Panchmi celebrations opens at Dera Harisar at Kilaraipur village, about 25 km from here, tomorrow, according to dera sources. Swami Budh Puri, who heads the dera but spends most of his time at Malki village, is arriving to preside over the celebrations that are a great annual attraction for thousands of devotees from all over the country and abroad. On the occasion, Swami Budh Puri would demonstrate a new method of meditation with the help of sun rays. The swami, who once taught at Engineering College, Allahabad, as a lecturer, has invented the method after a long research.

PNB Cultural Meet: The 21st Punjab National Bank inter-region cultural meet will be organised here from January 24 to 25. A spokesman of the bank said here on Friday that Mr U.S. Bhargava, general manager, Punjab Zone, will be the chief guest and will inaugurate the cultural meet. About 130 participants from eight regions of the Punjab zone i.e. Amritsar, Bathinda, Chandigarh, Ferozepore, Hoshiarpur, Jalandhar, Kapurthala and Ludhiana will participate in the Meet. The participants will take part in mono acting, light vocal solo, classical vocal-solo, classical instrumental, western classical instrumental, rare and innovative music (instrumental) and group song, one-act play and group dance followed by a prize distribution function. A committee has been formed under the leadership of Mr V.K. Gupta, deputy general manager.

ANNOUNCED: The Punjab Social Welfare Minister, Mr Joginder Singh Mann, on Thursday declared that the ‘ashirwad scheme’ would start from January 26, Under the scheme Rs 6,100 would be given for the marriage of SC and Christian girls, he said at a function.

BODY FOUND: A student of a local college, Jaspal who had been missing since Sunday, was found murdered near Chohal on the Hoshiarpur-Chintpurni road in Hoshiarpur district it. The body was recovered from a roadside ditch, as learnt here on Thursday.

TWO DEAD: Two labourers, Bija of Chak Kalan and Nikku of Bihar, died in Shankar village due to suffocation caused by a poisonous gas in a plant. The bodies were sent to Nakodar Civil Hospital for the post-mortem examination.

Tarn Taran
GRANTS: The Amritsar district administration has distributed grants worth Rs 66.35 lakh to ex-servicemen under different welfare schemes in the district during the current financial year. This was stated by Mr Raminder Singh, Deputy Commissioner, Amritsar, while addressing a meeting of the ex-servicemen, family members of ex-servicemen at Chohla Sahib on Wednesday.



CULTURAL PROGRAMME: Students of DPS, Chandigarh, on Friday presented a cultural programme and a musical play as part of the Republic Day celebrations. Justice N.C. Jain was the guest of honour. The students presented a Hindi musical play on unity in diversity. The Principal of the school, Ms Sunita Tanwar, spoke on the importance of the day.

Appointed: The following have been appointed office-bearers of the Chandigarh Beopar Mandal: chairman — Mr Mohinder Paul Kohli; senior vice-president — Mr Sat Paul Garg; vice-president — Mr Kamaljit Singh Panchhi, Mr Arun Talwar, Mr Charanjeev Singh and Mr Ramesh Khandewal; general secretaries — Mr L.C. Arora, Mr J.P.S. Kalra and Mr Baldev Goyal; and finance secretary — Mr Radhey Lal.

HEALTH CAMP: The Indian Council of Social Welfare organised a special camp for pregnant and lactating women at Dhanas village, Aman, Chaman, Ambedkar, Housing Board and Milk Colony on Friday. Over 40 women attended the camp. A check up was conducted and medicines were provided free of cost.

MC MEETING: The forthcoming meeting of the Municipal Corporation is scheduled for January 27, sources said here on Thursday. One of the major issues at the meeting will be the move to increase the financial powers of the councillors and the Mayor. The councillors are likely to send their inputs for the corporation meeting agendas at the earliest.

ELECTED: The Managing committee of Chandigarh chapter of the Northern India Regional Council of the Institute of Company Secretaries of India has elected the following office-bearers for 2004: chairman — Mr P.D. Sharma; vice-chairman — Jasbir Singh Dargan; secretary — Mr Atul V. Sood; treasurer — Mr K.V. Singhal; executive members — Mr R.K. Gupta, Mr Mukesh Sharma and Mr Mast Ram and ex officio executive member Mr Punit Abrol.



EXAMINED: As many as 200 patients were examined by a team of doctors headed by Dr Amar Singhal, Escort Heart Institute, New Delhi, at Maharaja Aggarsain Charitable Hospital, here on Wednesday. ECG and other tests were conducted free of cost at the camp. Dr Singhal advised patients to live a stress-free life, do regular exercises and have a balanced diet.

SUICIDE: A boy and a girl committed suicide by jumping before a train here on Thursday. The boy has been identified as Bajinder of the Subhash Nagar locality. The girl has not been identified. The cause of the suicide could not be ascertained.

SUSPENDED: Secretary of the Cooperative Bank has been placed under suspension for allegedly forging signatures of the depositors and withdrawing thousands of rupees from their account. According to information, the secretary of the Khizrabad Cooperative Agriculture Service Society, Mr Mohinder Kumar, was suspended on Wednesday.



ELECTED: The following have been elected office-bearers of the Pangi Tribal Welfare Association: president — Mr P.L. Thakur, vice-president — Mr Roshan Lal Thakur, general secretary — Mr B.R. Bhardwaj, joint secretary — Mr Kishan Chand Verma, press secretary — Mr Ajay Gupta and cashier — Mr Lekh Raj Thakur.

ELECTORAL LISTS: The Electoral Registration Officer and Subdivisional Magistrate in a press release here on Thursday said that the revised electoral lists of 56-Kulu and 57-Banjar Assembly constituencies had been published and available in his office. He further said that the photo identity cards of those who had got themselves photographed from November 3 to November 10, 2003, were also ready for distribution.

1 stabbed to death
: One person was stabbed to death at the Ner Chowk bus stand last evening the assailants numbering two or three, escaped. The deceased Sumana Kumar of Chogan village, near Bhangrotu, was rushed to Primary Health Centre, Ratti, where he was declared brought dead. Former Forest Minister, Thakur Rup Singh, has expressed concern over the deteriorating law and order situation in the district.

: The Himachal Vidhan Sabha Speaker, Mr G.R. Mussafir, inaugurated the Kulath drinking water scheme in Rajgarh on Wednesday. Mr Mussafir also laid the foundation stone of the Dudham Batol lift drinking water scheme which would benefit 10 villages.

RENAMED: The Himachal Government has renamed the Department of Social, Women and Scheduled Castes Welfare as the “Department of Social Justice and Empowerment”. A spokesman for the government said the department was not only involved in the welfare activities but was also striving to provide social justice and empower the weaker sections of the society as per the policies of the government.

CHARAS SEIZED: The Kulu police has seized 4.5 kg of charas from a foreigner during a special drive against drug trafficking. The seizure was made from a Maruti van during the checking of vehicles at Bajaura check post on Wednesday.

FLAYED: The BJP Legislature Party has flayed the Virbhadra Singh government for flouting established norms to deny the Opposition legislators the right to speak at public functions organised by the government. A resolution passed by the party at its meeting held in Samirpur on Wednesday, accused Mr Virbhadra Singh of ignoring the rights of the elected representatives and behaving like a feudal lord.


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