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Capt misses Youth Cong rally
Moga, March 12
Contrary to expectations, neither the Chief Minister nor his Cabinet colleagues turned up at the Youth Congress rally even though the newly appointed Punjab Youth Congress president Ravinder Awla had put up a modest show of strength.
Randeep Singh Surjewala, President , All-India Youth Congress, at a youth chetna rally in Moga Randeep Singh Surjewala (second from left), President, All-India Youth Congress, at a youth chetna rally in Moga on Friday.
— Photo by Pradeep Tewari

Punjab Ministry okays Governor’s Address
Chandigarh, March 12
The Punjab Council of Ministers today approved the Governor’s Address for the Vidhan Sabha Budget session beginning on March 15. Besides, six ordinances to be presented as Bills were also approved.

24 terrorists yet to be extradited: DGP
Bathinda, March 12
The Director General of Punjab Police, Mr A.A. Siddiqui, said efforts were on to get 24 hardcore terrorists, living in foreign countries, extradited and added that 140 companies of paramilitary forces had been demanded from the Centre for holding the forthcoming Lok Sabha poll in free and fair manner.

Ponty Chadha group rules the roost
Ludhiana, March 12
A careful study of the post-auction scenario in liquor trade reveals that the two groups that managed to secure most licences in this largest revenue-earning district of Punjab have entered into partnership with smaller contractors already in the business.

Fatehgarh Sahib



‘Spokesman’ Editor to challenge excommunication
Chandigarh, March 12
Challenging the authority of Sikh clergy to excommunicate him from Sikhism, Chief Editor of the ‘Spokesman’ Joginder Singh today claimed that he would file two petition against the action. One would be filed in the “court of Gurmat-knowing Sikhs”. The other in the court of law.

Deputy Speaker demands cancellation of exams
District Magistrate orders magisterial probe
Bathinda, March 12
Even as Mr K.A.P. Sinha, District Magistrate, has ordered a magisterial probe into the facilitation of copying to the wards of VVIPs in the annual examination in a local school allegedly by invigilators, Mr Bir Devinder Singh, Deputy Speaker, Punjab Vidhan Sabha, demanded that all exams held so far in that particular centre should be cancelled.

Board to probe copying
Editorial: Criminals as teachers

This spidergirl is for real
Kapurthala, March 12
Renu Kumari, a 10-year-old school student of this city, has successfully developed a rare talent of climbing a straight wall up to a height of 35 feet without any help or fear just like the comic book hero — Spiderman. Daughter of Gurbachan Singh, who is himself a renowned mountaineer of Punjab and an employee of the Punjab Police, Renu, stuns spectators by climbing any straight “pucca” wall effortlessly and can go up to 35 feet within a few seconds.

Renu Kumari climbs a wall with her father, Gurbachan Singh, at the Kapurthala Police Lines on Friday. — Photo by S.S. Chopra

Renu Kumari climbs a wall with her father, Gurbachan Singh, at the Kapurthala Police Lines


Face to Face
Patiala Lok Sabha seat

I have earned nomination
Patiala, March 12
Preneet Kaur For Ms Preneet Kaur, who is better known as the “Maharani” in Patiala city and constituency, the forthcoming election is one in which she feels she has earned her nomination by right due to her hard work. Daughter of an ICS officer and educated at Chelsea and St. Bedes in Shimla, the 59-year-old incumbent, who won the Patiala seat on her entry into politics, wants to be more known as a people’s ‘princess’ due to the effort she takes to strike a chord with the common man.

I want to be people’s voice
Patiala, March 12
Capt Kanwaljit Singh A student of Yadavindra Public School which was established by the father-in-law of Congress candidate Preneet Kaur whom he opposes from the Patiala parliamentary seat, Shiromani Akali Dal candidate Capt Kanwaljit Singh has always been projected as being “different” from traditional Akali leaders. Sauve and sophisticated, Capt Kanwaljit Singh is the son of former Pepsu State minister Dara Singh.

Cong, SAD start poll campaign
Fatehgarh Sahib, March 12
As the Congress and SAD had announced their candidates for the Ropar (reserved) constituency, both the candidates today started their election campaign with much fanfare after paying obeisance at Gurdwara Fatehgarh Sahib.

Mann announces Sangrur candidate
Patiala, March 12
Akali Dal (Amritsar) president Simranjit Singh Mann today announced the candidature of Gurnam Singh Aulakh, a person who he claimed to be a victim of “police repression” after Operation Bluestar, for the Sangrur parliamentary seat.

Cancel auctions, BJP urges EC
Chandigarh, March 12
The Punjab BJP has urged the Election Commission of India to cancel the auction of liquor vends in the state. In a detailed representation made to the commission today the BJP alleged the ruling Congress had collected a huge amount by favouring particular liquor contractors during the auction.


MLA threatening me, says DTO
Nawanshahr, March 12
The local District Transport Officer, Mr Manmohan Luthra, in a complaint lodged with the SSP, has accused the local MLA, Mr Prakash Singh, and the president of the municipal council, Mr Lalit Mohan Pathak, of threatening to kill him.

Badal blames Cong for Operation Bluestar
Amarkot (Amritsar), March 12
Mr Parkash Singh Badal, President, SAD, today held the Congress responsible for Operation Bluestar. Addressing an election rally at Amarkot in Amritsar district, he blamed the Congress for the Partition which resulted in massacre of Hindus and Sikhs.

2 labourers killed as wall gives way
Patiala, March 12
Two labourers were killed when the retaining wall of a basement in the State Bank of Patiala headquarters here collapsed this afternoon.
Keshav and Vinod were killed when the newly constructed retaining wall gave way.

A policeman surveys the wall that caved in and killed two labourers in the State Bank of Patiala headquarters in Patiala on Friday. — Photo by Rajesh Sachar

A policeman surveys the wall that caved in and killed two labourers

17 injured as bus tyre bursts
Ropar, March 12
Seventeen passengers were injured when a Himachal roadways bus (HP-20-2914) going from Una to Hardwar met with an accident near Ragilpur village on the Ropar-Chandigarh road today. The bus overturned when its front tyre burst and the driver lost control of the vehicle.

Freedom fighter Jagan Nath dead
Chandigarh, March 12
Lala Jagan Nath, a freedom fighter and advocate, died after a brief illness at his home town, Moga, today, he was 97. Described as a multi-facet personality, Lala Jagan Nath not only participated in the freedom struggle but also founded several centres of learning for women.

Keep close to Punjabi ethos, state’s Hindi writers told
Amritsar, March 12
Noted Hindi writers who gathered here to take part in one-day seminar on Contemporary Hindi Literature of Punjab held at the Conference Hall of Guru Nanak Dev University were of the view that Hindi writers of Punjab had lost their identity.

Sandhu asks CM to clarify stand on Ajit Singh Poohla
Amritsar, March 12
Col G.S. Sandhu, Chairperson, Poohla Eviction Committee, and uncle of Capt Bikramjit Singh, OSD to the Chief Minister, today asked Capt Amarinder Singh to clarify his position on having directed the authorities to release of Tarna Dal Chief Ajit Singh Poohla, involved in many serious cases of crime in the area.

SGPC to ‘liberate’ gurdwara from Poohla
Amritsar, March 12
The SGPC today threatened to liberate Shaheed Bhai Taroo Singh Gurdwara at Poohla village from the possession of the countroversial” Nihang chief, Baba Ajit Singh Poohla.


High Court
Court comes to rescue of kidney patient
Chandigarh, March 12
Coming to the rescue of a kidney patient, a Division Bench of the Punjab and Haryana High Court, headed by the Chief Justice, Mr Justice B.K. Roy, today asked the Authorisation Committee to expeditiously consider the matter.

  • Quashing of tender notice sought

  • Recovery stayed in teachers’ case


570 liquor shops fetch Rs 122.15 cr
Sangrur, March 12
As many as 570 liquor vends (478 vends of Punjab-made liquor and 92 vends of India made foreign liquor) of the district were today auctioned for Rs 122.15 crore for the financial year 2004-05.


SSP orders probe into cheating case
Phagwara, March 12
Five persons of two families, including an NRI woman have been charged with duping Surjit Singh of Domeli village of Rs 12 lakh’ on the plea of sending him to Canada but instead kept him shuttling between Thailand, Indonesia and Singapore before he returned to India.

Constable booked for NRI’s escape
Moga, March 12
The Punjab Police has alerted airports and police stations to prevent the escape of an NRI, based in Canada, who was recently arrested for allegedly committing fraud but two days back he escaped from the Civil Hospital here where he had been admitted.

2 brothers kidnapped, looted
Phagwara, March 12
Two brothers, Tejinder Singh and Karanbir Singh of local Fateh Singh Nagar, were kidnapped, thrashed and looted last nigh. They were hospitalised here. Both of them were going on their scooter towards Hoshiarpur when some jeep-borne persons wielding sharp-edged weapons and baseball bats forcibly took them away in their jeep near Khati village on Phagwara-Hoshiarpur road.

SDO sentenced
Ropar, March 12
The Special Judge, Ropar, Mr S.K. Goel, has sentenced Baldev Singh Gill, SDO Irrigation Department, Punjab, to two-year imprisonment and imposed a fine for Rs 5,000 in a corruption case.

District Health officer arrested for graft
Amritsar, March 12
The Vigilance Bureau yesterday arrested District Health Officer, Gurdaspur, Dr Satnam Singh Basra for being in possession of Rs 22,000 as bribe money. According to Senior Superintendent of Police (Vigilance) Dilbagh Singh Gill, Harpreet Singh, a resident of Ludhiana, had approached Dr Basra to issue a fake birth certificate for his uncle Lakhwinder Singh living in the USA.

9 kg of opium seized, 2 held
Faridkot, March 12
The district police yesterday seized over 9 kg of opium from two persons between Hari Nau village and Kasimbhatti under police station Kotkapura in this district. The two have been identified as Nihal Khan of Dhani Foldi village and Raj Kumar of Lohavat village Jodhpur district, Rajasthan.


Junior beaten up, 3 engg students suspended
Bathinda, March 12
Dr P.K. Bansal, Principal, Giani Zail Singh College of Engineering and Technology, Bathinda, has suspended three students of fourth year from college and hostel for their alleged involvement in brutally beating up a first-year student Gagandeep Singh on March 9 in the college campus.

GND varsity’s Jashan starts
Amritsar, March 12
As many as 22 teams of different departments of Guru Nanak Dev University participated in an inter-departmental cultural competition Jashan-2004, which opened at the university’s Dasmesh Auditorium here today.

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