P U N J A B    S T O R I E S



Parties trade charges at Jor Mela
Kiran Deep
Tribune News Service

Mr Samsher Singh Dullo, president of the PPCC, and other Congress leaders at the conference on the second day of the Shaheedi Jor Mela at Chamkaur Sahib
Mr Samsher Singh Dullo, president of the PPCC, and other Congress leaders at the conference on the second day of the Shaheedi Jor Mela at Chamkaur Sahib on Tuesday. — Tribune photo by Pradeep Tewari

Chamkaur Sahib, December 20
The political conferences of parties held here on the second day of Shaheedi Jor Mela today witnessed allegations and counter-allegations.

While the Congress camp challenged the jurisdiction of the Akal Takht Jathedar to summon the Chief Minister, Capt Amarinder Singh, and a former president of Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee, Mr Paramjit Singh Sarna, in connection with the DSGMC elections held yesterday, the Shiromani Akali Dal justified it.

“The Akal Takht Jathedar has no right to summon Capt Amarinder Singh or Mr Sarna in connection with the DSGMC elections. Akal Takht is a religious body, but the SAD has been misusing it for political gains,” said the Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee chief, Mr Shamsher Singh Dullo, during the political conference. He alleged that the SAD was responsible for terrorism witnessed by the state.

Regarding the subdivision status to Chamkaur Sahib as announced by the Chief Minister last year here, he said all formalities had been completed, but since the delimitation work was under progress, people would have to wait for a few months.

Mr Dullo announced that a memorial would be built in the town in memory of martyrs who sacrificed their lives while fighting Mughals and a gate would be dedicated to Sant Sangat Singh.

He blamed the BSP for instigating hatred among different communities by playing caste-based politics. He alleged that the BSP supremo had kept Mr Kanshi Ram in an isolated place to emerge as a front runner in the party.

A former Finance Minister and senior Akali leader, Capt Kanwaljit Singh, accused the Congress of interfering in the working of religious bodies and said Capt Amarinder Singh and Mr Sarna had violated the directives of Akal Takht while addressing a gathering at Diwan Hall in Gurdwara Qatalgarh Sahib.

Akal Takht had issued directions to Mr Sarna to hold the DGSMC elections next month, which he violated, he alleged.

Criticising the Congress, he said the Chief Minister had been making false promises to the people.

Interestingly, the SGPC President, Mr Avtar Singh, remained silent on summoning the Chief Minister and Mr Sarna during his speech.

The Ravi Inder group, in a separate political conference held at Khalsa College, backed the Congress stand that Akal Takht had no right to summon the two.

In another conference, an Akali Dal (Mann) senior leader, Mr Charan Singh Lohara, blamed the Congress and the SAD for working against Sikhism for their own benefits. He said there was no difference between the two parties as corruption had prevailed on a large scale during the former Akali government and the present Congress government regimes.


50,000 pay obeisance at Jor Mela
Kiran Deep
Tribune News Service

Chamkaur Sahib, December 20
A heavy flow of devotees was witnessed on the second day of Shaheedi Jor Mela here today. As many as 50,000 devotees paid obeisance in five historical gurdwaras. While the political conferences of the different political parties failed to attract a respectable crowd.

Long rows of devotees were seen outside the historical gurdwara Katalgarh Sahib since morning. PPCC President Shamsher Singh Dullo and the state Minister for Tourism and Animal husbandry Jagmohan Singh Kang received VIP treatment. The police escorted them directly into the gurdwara to pay obeisance while the devotees from distance places were waiting in long rows since the afternoon.

Although town is small, but all roads leading to town were full of the activities. Just about 8 km from the town, many people of nearby villagers were seen proceeding in groups towards the historical gurdwaras bare foot, while the villagers from distance places reached here on tractor-trolleys, buses, trucks, bicycles etc.

The locals have also set-up community kitchens to facilitate the devotees on all roads to the town.

Despite the din of loudspeakers of various political parties, these failed attract the villagers in a large numbers.

The Akali Dal(Badal) camp witnessed a low turnout even of its leaders. Tension surfaced when local MLA Satwant Kaur Sandhu raised objection about neglect of a senior Akali leader by other leaders on the stage. Capt Kanwaljit Singh resolved the matter. Besides senior Akali leader Capt Kanwaljit Singh, those who addressed the conference included SGPC President Avtar Singh, former state minister Gurdev Singh Badal, a local Akali MLA Satwant Kaur Sandhu, SGPC member Gurinder Singh Gogi.

The number of party workers was also low at the Congress conference, but it witnessed a strength of senior Congress leaders from different factions in the party, besides PPCC President Shamsher Singh Dullo, the prominent leaders who addressed the conference included Jagmohan Kang, Minister of Co-operative, Jasjit Singh Randhawa, Chief Parliamentary Secretary Harbansh Lal, Parliamentary Secretary, Rana K.P Singh, Gurkirat Singh, and MLA, Anandpur Sahib Ramesh Dutt Sharma.


News Analysis
Big blow to Badal in Delhi poll
Sarbjit Dhaliwal
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 20
By registering a victory in the election of the office-bearers of the Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee, the Delhi Shiromani Akali Dal, headed by Mr Paramjit Singh Sarna, has dealt a big political blow to the President of the Shiromani Akali Dal( SAD), Mr Parkash Singh Badal, and his son, Mr Sukhbir Singh.

Both father and son were overconfident with regard to their faction’s victory and had been even taunting Mr Sarna, who wanted to postpone the poll to January.

In the elections held yesterday, the Sarna faction completely defeated the Badal faction, which was left with no alternative except to resort to a boycott because of the lack of support from the required number of members to win the elections. The Sarna faction had the support of 35 members while there were only 15 with the Badal faction.

Mr Sarna has got elected his brother, Mr Harvinder Singh, president of the Delhi committee. In fact, Mr Harvinder Singh has replaced Mr Sarna as president.

Though Mr Harvinder Singh has been elected president, sources said that there was a lot of heartburning among certain members of the Sarna faction in this regard. Many of them have voted for Mr Harvinder Singh, but they are not happy with regard to the absolute control of Mr Sarna of Delhi Sikh politics. There are reports that certain members, who voted for Mr Harvinder Singh, have already started hobnobbing with Mr Badal’s party.

Both Mr Badal and his son remained active in Delhi for several days to win over pro-Sarna members. They visited the homes of most of the members to seek their support. However, the father and son duo failed to out manoeuvre Mr Sarna, who had the backing of the Punjab Chief Minister, Capt Amarinder Singh. It is an open secret that both Mr Sarna and Capt Amarinder Singh work in unison to weaken the influence of Mr Badal in Sikh politics.

The sources said that the entire strategy with regard to the Delhi committee elections was devised and executed by Capt Amarinder Singh. Capt Amarinder Singh had also met a number of Delhi committee members personally.

A senior leader of the SAD said that Mr Badal’s understanding of Delhi Sikh politics was almost nil. “ He should not have burnt his fingers there”, said the leader, requesting not be quoted by name. It was the late Gurcharan Singh Tohra who knew Delhi Sikh politics well. Mr Sarna is a protege of Tohra.

Mr Badal and his son fought almost a lonely battle as far as the Delhi committee elections were concerned. Other senior leaders of Mr Badal’s party were not involved in the poll and they quietly watched the show. It is a clear indication that as Mr Sukhbir Singh has almost taken control of the SAD, other senior leaders of the party have started staying away from party affairs which directly or indirectly promoted the leadership of Mr Sukhbir Singh.

Mr Badal seems to be losing his political influence on Sikhs in Haryana, Delhi and other states because he has not involved them fully in Sikh political affairs in Punjab.

“Mr Badal preferred Mr Om Parkash Chautala in Haryana and the BJP leadership in Delhi to Sikh political leaders of these states while deciding on extending the support in the elections to the Lok Sabha and the Assembly in the past”, a senior Akali leader said. “How can Mr Badal now expect support from Sikh leaders of these states?” he added.


1,000 Indians still in Iraq work as sweepers, say rescued youths
Jupinderjit Singh
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, December 20
Iraq, witness to much bloodshed in the past over a decade, has also been silently witnessing the worst form of human trafficking involving mainly Indians.

Youths, after being fooled by agents in India and Kuwait for jobs of truck drivers in Kuwait were being illegally pushed into the war-ravaged country where they were made to work as construction workers for the USA army apart from being employed as sweepers to work and live in inhuman conditions.

Twelve of the 24 such youths who got freedom after living, what they termed as a hostage kind of life under the US-Army for seven months, claimed at the office of the Lok Bhalai Party today that nearly 1000 more Indians were still in Baghdad and made to work as sweepers, where they were being made to clean toilets and pick cigarette buds of the US Army.

“And in the name of wages, they all were promised salary of Rs 33,000 per month for employment as a truck driver in Kuwait but were being given Rs 2500 only for the job of a sweeper or labourer fed on rice only and that too once or twice a day” the youths said.

The youths also showed fake international driving licences and other documents which the agents had arranged for them. The agents after pushing them into Iraq said their passports were lost and they had to work till new passports were arranged. The visa and other documents clearly said the youths could not enter Iraq yet they worked under the US army with what seems as the full knowledge of US Army authorities, the youths claimed.

Recounting almost daily harrowing experience of being a slave, the youths claimed the US Army employed them for the construction of a US Embassy near Baghdad and for the upkeep of a US military base.

The youths to returned after the Lok Bhalai Party led by Mr Balwant Singh Ramoowalia and Mr Avtar Singh Mulanpuri had taken up their cases with the Indian Embassy in Kuwait.

The embassy staff rescued the youths out of which 11 youths returned today and went to their respective homes. They had come to the Lok Bhalai Party office here in the city to thank the party leaders for taking up their cause.

The youths who reached here were are: Baljinder Singh, Karampal Singh of Amritsar, Dharampal , Gurmant Singh and Mann Singh of Sihala village in Ludhiana, Chandu Suja of Batala, Jagpal Singh of Nawan pind, Batala,Hardeep Singh of Batala, Nirmal Singh of Godhpur Poohla and Jagat Ram Barnodh in Una district, Karamjit Singh of Sihala Ludhiana, Vijay Kumar of Ropar district.

Mr Ramoowalia and Mr Mullanpuri have urged the Union Government and Punjab government to conduct a census of such victim youths in Punjab. They also demanded that all such agents who were defrauding the youths in the name of providing them attractive jobs in Kuwait be proceeded against.

Mr Ramoowalia said it was pity that 10 agents who had duped these youths were still free with the Indian government failing to take any action against them.


Bailey bridge at Tibri collapses
Tribune News Service

Tibri (Gurdaspur), December 20
Traffic has been disrupted once again on the Mukerian-Gurdaspur road. The bailey bridge constructed by the Army has wilted under pressure of over-loaded trucks carrying load up to 25 to 30 tonnes.

Two iron gilders supporting the bridge have been damaged due to which traffic on the bridge has been stopped, much to the resentment of commuters who would have to travel at least 10 to 20 km more to reach Gurdaspur.

Residents of Tibri blamed the overloaded trucks for the collapse of the bridge. This had rendered the bridge that was designed for 9 tonne load useless.

Traffic on the Mukerian-Gurdaspur road has been disrupted for the last six months. The arch-bridge over the UBDC canal in Tibri got damaged. These bridges over the canal are over 100 years old and have now become part of national and state highways but are not designed to take load over 25 to 30 tonnes.

After the intervention of the PWD Minister, Punjab, Mr Pratap Singh Bajwa, the Army built a bailey bride as a temporary replacement for the bridge. Traffic was normalised for about a month but the overloaded vehicles again damaged the bridge.

The Army is yet to start the repairs. The residents are demanding that the plying of heavy vehicles on the bridge should be stopped altogether.

The PIDB has earmarked a budget of Rs 4 crore for the construction of a pucca bridge over the canal passing through Tibri. Sources said it would take at least a year for the construction of the bridge.

The farmers of the area are also facing a problem in taking their produce to sugar mills in Mukerian.


Doc shifted to 2 places on same day!
Perneet Singh
Tribune News Service

Bathinda, December 20
Can a government employee be transferred to two places through two orders issued from the same office on the same date? The state’s Health Department committed such a blunder while posting a Senior Medical Officer in the district.

The SMO, Dr Ajitpal Singh, who was first posted at Primary Health Centre, Nathana, was transferred to Women and Children Hospital, Bathinda, against a vacant post through an order dated September 9. The post of SMO at Women and Children Hospital got vacated following the retirement of Dr B.R. Gupta on September 30. However, instead of appointing Dr Ajitpal to the post, he was allegedly posted as surplus staff.

His woes did not end here. Prior to the inauguration of a primary health centre at the Chief Minister, Capt Amarinder Singh’s ancestral village Mehraj, he was transferred there as the SMO through an order dated November 30.

Following the opening of the PHC at Mehraj on December 5, he received another order also dated November 30 asking him to join at his earlier place of posting — PHC, Nathana.

Dr Ajitpal said when he reached Nathana to join duty, he was again told that his transfer orders were cancelled and he had to resume work at Mehraj only. He said: “I have not received my salary for the past three months.” He rued that he had written to the authorities concerned in this regard many times, but to no avail.

Disillusioned with the turn of events, he has now shot off a missive to the CMO stating that he would be forced to move court if he did not receive his salary in the next 15 days.

The CMO, Mr H.S. Dhillon, said a post of SMO was abolished at Women and Children Hospital in September. Regarding his salary, he said it was not a big problem and he would be paid the same soon.


No let up in cold wave; sadhu dies in Bathinda

Chandigarh, December 20
The piercing cold wave sweeping most parts of the northern region today claimed life of a sadhu and intensified its grip with ice-cold winds keeping the minimum temperatures down much below normal.

A report from Bathinda in Punjab said that a sadhu died of cold. His body was found in a train which had come from Jind in Haryana and halted in Bathinda.

Another cold-related death was reported from Patiala where a beggar was found dead by shopkeepers in the Chhoti Baradari area yesterday. Yet another unidentified man fell prey to the piercing cold in Gurdaspur district of Punjab yesterday.

With this the cold wave has so far claimed eight lives — six in Punjab and two in Haryana — in the region.

Meanwhile, Chandigarh recorded a low of 4.6° celsius down two degrees while the maximum settled at 21.6°C, the Meteorological department said here.

Most Punjab towns were in the grip of intense cold and Amritsar continued to face the maximum onslaught of the current spell of cold wave as the mercury in the minimum there dropped to 1.2°C which was four degrees below the normal range. The maximum settled at 19°C.

Biting cold also swept Patiala, which recorded a low of 2.7°C, down four. The maximum was 20.5°C.

Ludhiana too had a cold night recording a low of 3.1°C, down three while the high there settled at 20.6°C. The low at Jalandhar was 2°C.

Srinagar in Kashmir Valley continued to be in the grip of bone chilling cold and the low was recorded at minus 4.6°C. The residents got little respite even during the day today as the maximum touched just 5.5°C. Jammu, however, saw the high touch 19.7°C while the low was recorded at 8.9°C.

In Haryana, minimum temperatures today witnessed slight increase. Ambala recorded a low of 5.7°C. Hisar also recorded a similar low at 5.7°C. Karnal had a low of 4.7°C, down three degrees.

Delhi residents braved intense chill as the mercury in the minimum dropped to 4.3°C, down four degrees while the maximum settled at 22.7°C.

Shimla had a cold day as the hill town recorded a maximum of 13.4°C while the low was well within the normal range at 4.6°C.

The low at Bhuntar plummetted to minus 0.4°C while at Sundernagar it was 0.4°C.

According to the meteorological, fog reduced visibility at Palam in Delhi (200 m), Amritsar (600 m), Ambala (800 m), Sirsawa (500 m), Sirsa (500 m) and Bathinda (500 m).

Mist was observed in Chandigarh and Suratgarh. — PTI


Check driving by children, says IG (Traffic)
Tribune News Service

Sangrur, December 20
Mr S.K. Sharma, Inspector General (IG) of Police (Traffic), Punjab, today stressed on traffic education to children to reduce accidents in the state. He desired a check on drivingby children.

Mr Sharma was addressing a state-level seminar on “Road safety awareness”, organised by the Lions Club and Traffic Police, at the War Heroes Stadium here today. Students of various schools teachers, panches and sarpanches participated.

Mr V.K. Bhawra, DIG, Patiala range; Mr Harinder Singh Chahal, SSP, Sangrur; Mr Surjit Singh Grewal, SP (D); Mr Dharam Singh, SP (H); Mr Madanjit Singh, Liaison Officer to the CM, Punjab; Mr Amandeep Bansal, DTO, Sangrur; Mr Sham Singh, Chairman, Zila Parishad, Sangrur; Mr Parvinder Bajaj, acting president of the local Municipal Council; and Ms Geeta Sharma, president of the Sunam Municipal Council were also present.

The IG sought cooperation of parents and teachers in controlling driving by children and imparting traffic education to children. He said they could play a role by educating children about traffic rules. He said self-discipline would reduce accidents.

Mr V.K. Bhawra, DIG, Patiala range, appealed to drivers to obey traffic rules to save lives of people. He said that in 2004 up to November 147 persons died in accidents, while in current year up to November only 90 persons died in accidents in Sangrur district.

Dr Surinder Singla, a representative of the Lions Club and District TB Centre, Sangrur; Dr P.K. Jain, Assistant Professor, Sant Longowal Institute of Engineering and Technology, Longowal; Dr Jatinder Kaur, a member of Community Policing Resource Centre, Sangrur; Prof Charanjit Singh Udari and Mr Jupitor Sharma talked about accidents and deaths in accidents and road safety measures.

Two pamphlets were on traffic rules and road safety measures were released. An exhibition on traffic rules was also organised.


Child development scheme to cover all
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 20
The Government of India under the Integrated Child Development Services Scheme has modified the guidelines for the supply of supplementary nutrition to the beneficiaries.

Through a total of 14,730 anganwadi centres the Government of Punjab is providing dalia, kheer and panjiri, six days a week, to adolescent girls, pregnant and lactating mothers and children suffering from malnutrition in the 0-6 year age group.

The Minister of State for Social Security, Development of Women and Children, Mrs Gurkanwal Kaur, said that earlier the beneficiaries were from families below the poverty line. Now the government had issued instructions to provide supplementary nutrition to all adolescent girls, pregnant and lactating mothers and children belonging to all castes.


More IPS officers given charge of jails
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 20
The Punjab Government today handed over the management of more jails to police officials.

A decision was taken last month that all jails would be under the charge of Indian Police Service (IPS) officials.

Kunwar Vijay Partap Singh was the first to be appointed DIG, Jails-cum-Superintendent, Central Jail, Amritsar. This was last month. Today, he was given additional charge as Commandant, 3rd India Reserve Battalion (IRB), Ludhiana.

Mr R.N. Dhoke, Commandant, 36th Battalion of the Punjab Armed Police, Bahadurgarh, has been given additional charge as Senior Superintendent, Central Jail, Patiala. Mr Sharad Satya Chauhan, Deputy Director, Punjab Police Academy, Phillaur, has been given additional charge as Senior Superintendent, Central Jail, Ludhiana.

Mr Harpreet Singh Sidhu, AIG, Litigation, Chandigarh, has been given additional charge as DIG, Jails, Punjab, stationed in Chandigarh.


Boycott of Sikh Sangat “must continue’’
Our Correspondent

Amritsar December 20
Several Sikh organisations today took a strong stand against the appeal of the National Minorities Commission (NCM) to the Akal Takht Jathedar to retract its directions of boycott against the Rashtriya Sikh Sangat (RSS).

They alleged that these groups preach hatred and violence against minorities.

Global Sikh organisations like GURSIKH, Khalsa alliance and other Panthic groups blamed the RSS of trying to use the NCM to woo jathedars . They accused the NCM of taking a soft stand towards the organisation even as it was aware of the “misdoings”.

According to documents provided to The Tribune by GURSIKH, a letter was purportedly written by Mr Tirlochan Singh, NMC, Chairman to the secretary to the Jathedar, Akal Takht, where the former appealed that earlier directions against the RSS may be reviewed by providing them the opportunity to present their views. They pointed out that reviewing direction was against the traditions of the panth.

They stated that the RSS had allegedly attempted to insult Guru Granth Sahib by labelling it as a “Hindu granth”. It also tried to misinterpret Gurbani and Sikh ideals.


PSEB staff plan agitation
Our Correspondent

Hoshiarpur, December 20
The state executive of the Ministerial Services Union Punjab of the PSEB at its meeting held here today discussed the problems being faced by the clerical staff and decided to struggle for getting implemented their already accepted demands.

In a press release, Mr Om Parkash, general secretary of the union, stated that it was decided to show black flags to the members of the PSEB on their coming to the field on January 2, 2006, organise representatives convention at Desh Bhagat Hall, Jalandhar, on January 6 and participate in a two-day proposed strike in February.

He stated that the management of the board was backing out from implementing their already accepted demands before the Labour Commissioner. This had compelled the employees to adopt the path of struggle.

Their main demands included release of arrears for the time-bound scale to lower division clerk.


Revenue officials asked to hear grievances
Tribune News Service

Ropar, December 20
The Divisional Commissioner, Patiala, Ms Anjali Bhavana, yesterday directed all Revenue Department officials to hear the grievance of the people on priority basis at a special meeting convened here.

The administrative officials were also told to remain in their offices during office hours.

If an official had to attend any official work in field then they would inform the general public in advance about it, he said.

The meeting was attended by the Deputy Commissioner, Mr H.I.S Garewal, the ADC, Mr Surjit Singh, the SDMs of all the sub-divisions, Tehsildars.


Protest march held
Tribune News Service

Amritsar, December 20
Employees of the public and private sectors here today took part in the protest march, the call for which had been given by the All India Trade Union Congress, urging the government to raise the interest rate on provident fund from 8 to 9.5 per cent.

Mr Amarjit Singh Asal, general secretary, CPI, said though the UPA government had the support of Communist parties, it was ignoring the interests of the employees of the public and private sectors.


$ 1000 for PM’s Relief Fund
Our Correspondent

Amritsar, December 20
The American Sikhs from 3HO foundation, SikhNet and Miri Piri Academy founded by Bhai Sahib Harbhajan Singh Yogi, today handed over a cheque for $ 1000 to The Tribune for forwarding it to the Prime Minister’s Relief Fund for the earthquake victims.

Ms Preraim Kaur Khalsa, board member of Khalsa Dharma International, addressed the gathering on the occasion.


Vidhan Sabha prorogued
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 20
The Punjab Governor, Gen S.F. Rodrigues (retd), prorogued the 10th session of the Vidhan Sabha today, Mr Nachattar Singh Mavi, Secretray of the Sabha, said.

The session had been adjourned sine die at the conclusion of its sitting on October 18.

Now, a session of the Vidhan Sabha will require a 15-day notice. It will be in all probability held in February next year.


Kanshi Ram’s mother in PGI
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 20
Ms Krishan Kaur, mother of Bahujan Samaj Party leader, Kanshi Ram, has been admitted to the PGI here.

She had been initially admitted to the Civil Hospital, Ropar, where the Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee chief, Mr Shamsher Singh Dullo, visited her. Doctors there decided to refer her to the PGI.


Property dealer found murdered
Tribune News Service

Lalru, December 20
A 26-year-old property dealer of Lalru was allegedly done to death by certain unidentified persons on the Dosarka-Barara road in Ambala district on the intervening night of December 18 and 19.

The badly-bruised body of Sanjeev was found dumped in the sugarcane fields of Holi village yesterday evening. Though the motive behind the murder was yet to be ascertained, preliminary investigations by the Ambala police revealed that it could be a case of killing for money.

The police said snatching theory appeared credible. Sanjeev had withdrawn Rs 5 lakh from the local branch of the Punjab National Bank on December 18 after which he left for the house of his friend, Mr Jaswinder Singh, in Ambala on his motor cycle.

After parking his motor cycle at Ambala, Sanjeev reportedly left for his in-laws’ house in Thambad village in Jaswinder’s car. However, he never reached Thambad. His body was later found from the fields of Mr Dharam Singh. The car was found abandoned along with the badly-bruised body, which bore injury marks inflicted by sharp-edged weapons, sources said.

The sources added that it appeared that Sanjeev had entered or was about to enter into a deal involving a big amount. Rumours were that he had been looted of several lakhs of rupees. “Snatching could be the reason behind the murder,” said Mr Rajdeep Deswal, Ambala SP, adding that “the police was exploring all possibilities.”

The deceased,who worked as a clerk with a transport company, had recently switched to property dealing. He is survived by his wife Rekha, a daughter Sanjana (6) and a son Dushyant (3).

Meanwhile, the post-mortem examination of the body was conducted at Medical College, Mullana.


Shopkeeper hurt in attack
Our Correspondent

Kharar, December 20
The owner of a medical store got seriously injured after he was allegedly attacked by about six persons at his shop in Mundi Kharar here this morning.

According to information, the injured person, Mr Parminder Singh, was taken to the local Civil Hospital from where he was referred to the PGI, Chandigarh.

Some persons armed with wooden planks, etc, reached the shop of Mr Parminder Singh soon after he opened it. He was attacked with wooden planks. However, the reason behind the attack was not clear.

A complaint was made to the police in this regard and the matter is being investigated. The police has rounded up three persons for questioning.


Institute of law at Sidhwan Khurd
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 20
The foundation stone of Guru Hargobind Institute of Law for Women, Sidhwan Khurd, was laid by Dr Khem Singh Gill, former Vice-Chancellor, Punjab Agricultural University, and a member of the Sri Guru Hargobind Ujagar Hari Trust, at Sidhwan Khurd yesterday.

To be affiliated with Panjab University, the law institute will be functional from the coming session and admissions will be conducted both in the three-year and five-year courses. Both the courses will have 80 seats each.

Among those present on the occasion were Capt Dalbara Singh, president of the SGHUH Trust, the secretary, Mr Kirpal Singh Bhattal, Mr Tarlochan Singh, Mrs Shivinder Kaur Sidhu, Col C.S. Dhillon, and Mr Baljit Singh, trustees.

An education college and an arts college with post-graduate courses affiliated to Panjab University are already functioning in the village, whose pioneering role in women's education has often been lauded at home and abroad.

A school affiliated to CBSE is also being managed by the trust. The Sidhwan Khurd colleges are among the oldest women's institutes in the country whose alumni includes top politicians, sportswomen and intellectuals.


Teachers helping examinees face action
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 20
Disciplinary action will be initiated against teachers who are found helping students in copying during examinations. Any case of mass copying will mean that the centre superintendent and the controller will be held responsible for the lapse, said the Punjab Education Minister, Mr Harnam Dass Johar, at a high-level meeting here today.

A spokesperson of the state government said examination centres would be set up for every batch of 200 students. The answersheets of Classes VIII , X and XII would be collected by the Punjab School Education Board within a specified time from the centres.

Mr Johar also directed the DPI (Secondary) to provisionally admit students taking the board examinations to the next class. The practical examination would precede the written examination.


Students felicilated
Tribune News Service

Patiala, December 20
A warm welcome was accorded to the students of Sri Guru Harkrishan Public School on their return from the programme named `Khel Khel Main Badlo Duniya’ on DD-1.

The sweet fragrance of victory was experienced by students of Class IX —Shivani, Ashima, Deepaushu and Manmeet, who won the quiz contest by beating students of Alok Senior Secondary School, Rajasthan. Their performance with the message ‘Save Petroleum’ was also appreciated.


NRI donates money for scholarships
Tribune News Service

Patiala, December 20
Mr G.S. Gujral, president of the London-based International Punjabi Society, the UK, gave a cheque for 1360 pounds (Rs 1,08,800) for the Golden Heart Scholarships for rural students of the Yadavindra College of Engineering, Talwandi Sabo, to the Vice-Chancellor, Punjabi University, Mr Swarn Singh Boparai, here today.


Rs 9.17 crore subsidy for rural industry
Our correspondent

Fatehgarh Sahib, December 19
The Punjab Khadi and Village Industry Board will distribute Rs 9.17 crore as subsidy to approximately 700 borrowers, who would set up village industries units in the rural areas and generate sustainable employment for 13,520 rural unemployed of the state, said Mr Charanjit Singh Walia, Chairman of the board, while talking to mediapersons here today. He had come here to preside over a seminar organised by his department on bee keeping.

He said on the eve of Saheedi Jor Mela at Fatehgarh Sahib Chief Minister Amarinder Singh would distribute the cheques for the subsidy during a function while Union Minister for Sports and Youth Affairs Oscar Fernandes would preside over the function. He said the sanction of funds for the release of subsidy amounting to Rs 2 crore in pending margin money claims upto 2002-03 would be released by the Khadi Commission shortly.

He said his department was making all efforts to set up small village industrial units in the rural areas to generate employment for rural youths. Board would also provide assistance in marketing their products, he said, adding that the board was also giving loans on minimum rate of interest and in addition to subsidy.

Mr Walia said as the government could not provide jobs to all so the youths must get technical training and start their own business on small scale. He said dairy farming, bee keeping, fish farming, poultry and other allied business could be started with loans provided by the board.

The chairman said in order to encourage self employment the board would organise a state-level exhibition of the products made by the units of the board at the Jor Mela to popularise its schemes.

HOME PAGE | Punjab | Haryana | Jammu & Kashmir | Himachal Pradesh | Regional Briefs | Nation | Opinions |
| Business | Sports | World | Mailbag | Chandigarh | Ludhiana | Delhi |
| Calendar | Weather | Archive | Subscribe | Suggestion | E-mail |