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5 elected to RS from Punjab
Chandigarh, March 19
PPCC President H.S. Hanspal today bowing to the wishes of the party high command, withdrew from the contest for the Rajya Sabha. The withdrawal by Mr Hanspal paved the way for the unopposed election of Mr Gill to the Rajya Sabha as a Congress candidate from Punjab.

New Rajya Sabha members reveal their mind

Contractors delay power supply plan
Patiala, March 19
The landmark 24-hour rural domestic power supply scheme, which envisages extending this facility to all villages in the state by June this year and is a major poll plank of the Congress, has run into rough weather with contractors supplying poles adopting go-slow tactics to hike the pole rates.

SGPC to do kar seva despite objection

Amritsar, March 19
The Shiromani Gurdwara Prabandhak Committee has decided to go ahead with the proposed kar seva of the Golden Temple’s sarovar for supplying filtered water, despite opposition by Head Granthi, Darbar Sahib and experts.

Kids take a dip near the "safety wall", which is now visible after water has been released from the Holy Tank of the Golden Temple
Kids take a dip near the "safety wall", which is now visible after water has been released from the Holy Tank of the Golden Temple. Kar Sewa for supplying filtered water would be taken up from March 23. — Photo by Rajiv Sharma




Board suspends three for paper leakage; orders probe
Mohali, March 19
Even as the Punjab School Education Board today constituted a fact-finding committee to inquire into the cause of the widespread leakage of its Class X and XII question papers, three board employees were suspended for negligence of duty that led to the leakage of the question papers in Gurdaspur and Ludhiana.

Badal accused of encouraging graft
Faridkot, March 19
Mr Simranjit Singh Maan, President, Akali Dal (Amritsar), has ruled out the possibility of making alliance with any faction of the Akali Dal in the elections in Punjab. He accused Mr Parkash Singh Badal, SAD chief, of encouraging corruption in the nomination of party candidates.

A man sells Indian cricket jerseys to fans going to Pakistan
A man sells Indian cricket jerseys to fans going to Pakistan, in Amritsar on Friday. — PTI

PSGPC offer to cricket fans
Amritsar, March 19
Even as hotels in Lahore are reportedly full to capacity these days, the Pakistan Sikh Gurdwara Prabandhak Committee (PSGPC) has decided in principle to accommodate cricket fans in Gurdwara Dera Sahib, Lahore, on the recommendation of the Shiromani Akali Dal, New Delhi or the SGPC during two ODIs scheduled to be played in Lahore on March 21 and March 24.


Barnala men to campaign for Dhindsa
Sangrur, March 19
Succumbing to the pressure, mounted by the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) President Parkash Singh Badal on the Barnala faction to extend support to Mr Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa, SAD candidate from Sangrur Parliamentary constituency in the Lok Sabha elections, some of the top leaders, including Mr Baldev Singh Mann, of the Barnala faction would now start campaigning for Mr Dhindsa from March 23 in the Dirba Assembly constituency.

Christians to support Congress
Pathankot, March 19
The Punjab United Christian Front has decided to support the Congress in the Lok Sabha elections.


Plea for AIDS testing centre at Nabha
Nabha, March 19
Months after private laboratories in the town reported a high incidence of AIDS in the region, the district health authorities have now requested the State AIDS Control Society to establish a voluntary counselling and testing centre (VCTC) at the Civil Hospital here to enable quality testing as well as provide counselling to the HIV-positive patients.

A view of private laboratories in Nabha
A view of private laboratories in Nabha

Contractors allege foul play in tender process

Bathinda, March 19
Mr Harwinder Pal Singla, partner M/s Singla Construction Company, Bathinda and Mr Surinder Singh, partner M/s Surinder Singh and Company, Dabwali, today alleged that they were not issued the tender forms by a senior official of the Punjab Mandi Board, Bathinda, for the works pertaining to the construction and repair of link roads.

Contractors wait for opening of tenders at Punjab Mandi Board, Bathinda, on Friday.
— Tribune photo by Kulbir Beera 

Contractors wait for opening of tenders at Punjab Mandi Board, Bathinda, on Friday.

Pesticides behind cancer deaths in Bathinda: study
Amritsar, March 19
India, especially Punjab and Haryana, which gained prosperity in the post-Green Revolution with the use of high-yielding seeds, fertilisers, pesticides and irrigation, is now paying a heavy cost for excessive use of agricultural inputs.

Daler faces hiccups before flight to Pak
Patiala, March 19
Popstar Daler Mehndi faced some hiccups at the Indira Gandhi International Airport in Delhi before being allowed to board a flight to Lahore.

New twist to minor girl’s marriage case
Jalandhar, March 19
Family members of Sarbjit Kaur, a 16-year-old Dalit girl of Pandori Khas village, near Nakodar, who was allegedly abducted by Raju of the same village on February 8, and who was later “forced” to marry Raju by his family in the presence of girl’s father, today alleged that they were being “coerced” by the Nakodar police to enter a compromise with the boy’s family and withdraw their complaint against the boy.

Aero model crashes
Goraya (Jalandhar), March 19
Curiosity drove people out of their houses and offices this morning when they came to know that some unidentified object was seen in the sky. The suspense, ended in the afternoon when it crashed and got damaged on the outskirts of this township and turned out to be a remote-controlled aero model.
Army officials inspect a remote-controlled aero model, which crashed on the outskirts of Goraya in Jalandhar district, on Friday.
— Photo by Sukhwinder
Army officials inspect a remote-controlled aero model, which crashed on the outskirts of Goraya in Jalandhar district

Lawyers protest against police inaction
Kapurthala, March 19
Members of the District Bar Association today held a dharna in front of the SSP’s office.

Separate gurdwara panel for Haryana opposed
Amritsar, March 19
The Shiromani Gurdwara Prabandhak Committee today opposed the demand for separate Gurdwara Prabandhak Committee in Haryana.

Toll plaza staff beat up bus driver
Dera Bassi, March 19
The driver of a Haryana Roadways Chandigarh depot, bus was thrashed by at least six employees of a private company deployed at the toll plaza on the Dera Bassi railway overbridge here this morning.

FCI employees stage dharna
Bathinda, March 19
A large number of employees of the Food Corporation of India (FCI) today staged a dharna in front of its district office here to press its management to accept their demands and to remove anti-employees’ policies being followed by its administration.


On Judge’s word, ‘married’ girl agrees to go with parents
Chandigarh, March 19
Away from her ‘husband’ who is locked up in a jail on the allegations of abducting and kidnapping her, a Ludhiana resident has refused to trust her parents. She only agreed to go with them for 15 days on the court’s suggestion, but sought a written undertaking. Appearing before the Punjab and Haryana High Court, she asked Mr Justice S.K. Mittal, “Can’t you allow someone to stay with me?”


Cyber kiosks for online payment of bills
Amritsar, March 19
The holy city will soon have cyber kiosks for online payment of bills to the municipal corporation. The exact number of kiosks would be ascertained shortly and provisions made according to the concentration of population and number of building units in 273 blocks of the city.

Land retrieved amid feeble protest
Kharar, March 19
The Municipal Council took possession of over seven acres of land worth Rs 1.50 crore amid a feeble protest here today.

DC orders closure of medical store
Kharar, March 19
The Ropar Deputy Commissioner, Mrs Seema Jain, has ordered the closure of the medical store functioning on the premises of the Civil Hospital here.


Rs 10,000 looted at gunpoint
Dera Bassi, March 19
Robbers struck at a liquor vend and a petrol station in this subdivision in the last 24 hours and looted a case of whisky and Rs 10,000 at gunpoint in two incidents.

Murder mystery solved after 12 yrs
Patiala, March 19
Sixtytwo-year-old Piara Singh had given up all hope of finding the killer of his brother, who was killed on October 9, 1992. Now he knows that his brother was killed because he saw two robbers decamping with a few iron grills.


Engg college for rural students at Talwandi Sabo
Patiala, March 19
The Academic Council of Punjabi University today approved the establishment of Yadavindra College of Engineering at Talwandi Sabo here today.

Roll numbers for annual exams despatched
Amritsar, March 19
Guru Nanak Dev University’s annual undergraduate examinations will commence from March 31 and roll numbers for these examinations have been despatched to the eligible candidates.

BARC for pro-radiation projects
Amritsar, March 19
Dr V.C. Sahni, Director, Physics group at Bhaba Atomic Research Centre (BARC), Mumbai, yesterday said here that a proposal to set up projects on lines of Sludge Hygienisation Using Radiation and Isotopes (SHRI) at other states of the country was under consideration by the BARC.

GND varsity confers degrees
Amritsar, March 19
As many as 170 post graduates of Guru Nanak Dev University were today conferred degrees in commerce and economics (MBA, M.Com, MBE and M.Sc) at the university’s third economics and commerce faculty convocation held here. Dr G.K. Chadha, Vice-Chancellor of Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi was the chief guest.


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