P U N J A B    S T O R I E S



Centre tells state to share paddy loss
Sarbjit Dhaliwal
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 10
Though the Union Government gave relaxation in the specifications for the procurement of paddy in Punjab in October last year, it is now telling the state government to share at least 50 per cent of the financial loss to be suffered on this count.

Sources said the authorities concerned in the Union Government had urged the Punjab Food and Supplies Department to share the financial loss on a 50:50 basis with regard to the relaxation given in the outturn of rice from paddy.

The Union Government had given a relaxation of 1 per cent in the outturn of rice. In the normal course Punjab was supposed to contribute 67 kg of rice to the central pool from every 100 kg of paddy procured by its agencies in the state. However, under the relaxed specifications, this contribution was reduced to 66 kg of rice for every 100 kg of paddy by the Union Government.

The relaxation in the specifications was given due to damage and blackening of paddy grains because of inclement weather and other related factors in September.

The procurement agencies had refused to procure paddy as discolouration and damage to grains was above the fixed specifications.

As there will be 1 kg less outturn of rice for every 100 kg of paddy, the Union Government has told the state government that it should pay 50 per cent of the total loss of Rs 100 crore to be suffered in this regard.

The procurement agencies of the Punjab Government are to give 77 lakh tonnes of rice to the national pool from the 116 lakh tonnes of paddy procured by them. In all, 87 lakh tonnes of rice is to be contributed by Punjab to the national pool from the state. Already, 43 lakh tonnes of rice has been prepared by rice mills from the paddy. The entire paddy milling operations are expected to be completed by May.

The sources said that earlier the matter regarding the sharing of financial loss was taken up by the Punjab Government with the Ministry for Agriculture, Food and Public Distribution. However, that failed to resolve the issue. Now state the government would take up the issue with the Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh.


15 villages to be heritage sites
Our Correspondent

Attari, February 10
Chief Minister Capt Amarinder Singh here today announced that the state government would develop 15 villages related to martyrs, religious leaders and poets as heritage sites.

He was here to attend the 160th martyrdom anniversary of the hero of last Anglo-Sikh war General Sardar Sham Singh Attariwala. This nondescript border village hosted the Chief Minister after 27 years. Earlier, Giani Zail Singh had attended the function in his capacity as the Chief Minister of the state.

Capt Amarinder Singh said that a grant of Rs 1 crore for each village would be issued to initiate the project comprising a memorial, a museum and the landscaping of the site. He said the paucity of funds would not be allowed to hinder the progress of these projects. He said the step was aimed at inspiring the youths of their responsibilities towards the country.

These villages include Attari (General Sardar Sham Singh Attariwala), Wadala Viram (Shah Mohammad), Pahuwind (Baba Deep Singh), Shiana Bangar (Akali Phoola Singh), Chulat (Harchand Singh Jaijee), Pheruman (Jathedar Darshan Singh Pheruman), Bhattal (Baba Hira Singh Bhattal), Kairon (Partap Singh Kairon), Sarabha (Shaheed Kartar Singh Sarabha), Khatkarkalan (Shaheed Bhagat Singh), Dudhike (Punjab Kesari Lala Lajpat Rai) and Thikriwala (Praja Mandal activist Sewa Singh Thikriwala).

He directed Mr Partap Singh Bajwa, Cultural and Tourism Minister, to take up the issue of developing the village of famous general of Maharaja Ranjit Singh, Hari Singh Nalwa, in Gujranwala district as a model village during his forthcoming visit to Pakistan on February 12.

Apart from this, Kupkalan and Khanuwan villages, which witnessed Wada Ghallughara (holocaust) and Chotta Ghallughara in the Sikh history, would also be so developed.

The Chief Minister announced a grant of Rs 10 lakh for the aesthetic development of the village to the General Sardar Sham Singh Attariwala Trust and directed to erect a lifesize bust of General Attariwala at the Cherhata bypass.

He also announced a grant of Rs 50 lakh for the completion of the Gateway of India at Cherhata that was hanging fire for the past 20 years. He expressed a desire to dedicate the same on Dasehra.

Earlier, he paid respects at the “smadh” of Attariwala and was honoured with “siropa” by Col Harinder Singh (retd), secretary-general of the trust. Later, he partook a langar.

The chairman of the trust, Col Kuldeep Singh, urged the Chief Minister to declare the commemoration of the martyrdom day of Attariwala as a state-level function.

Replying to a question, he said the road from Amritsar to Wagah would be four-laned and would be named after General Attariwala. He said the road from Jalandhar to Delhi would be six-laned. He said that his government had approved three SEZs for Amritsar.

To another question, he said the Prime Minister would flag off the direct bus service from Amritsar to Nankana Sahib on February 24.


Stage set for heritage fest
Tribune News Service

Patiala, February 10
The stage is set for the much-awaited fourth Patiala Heritage Festival to unfold here from tomorrow. The curtain for the cultural extravaganza would be raised by the Haryana Chief Minster, Mr Bhupinder Singh Hooda, from the precincts of Qila Mubarak, during the inauguration ceremony at 6 p.m. tomorrow.

The festival will provide a rich fare of Indian classical and semi-classical music and dance fare besides workshops for children painting sessions, seminars and a week-long crafts mela.

The programme

11 February: Gurnam Singh-shabad, Gurinder Harnam Singh-bhajan, Ghulam sabir Nizami-qawwali (11 am). Inaugural ceremony: Swan Lake Ballet in Mohiniattam-Bharati Shivaji and Party (6 pm).

12 February: Crafts Mela inaguration (12am), Launga da Lishkara by Harpal Tiwana group (6.30 pm).

13 February: Seminar: Art of the Punjab (10am), Shubha Mudgal-classical vocal music, Navtej Johar-Bharatnatyam (6.30pm).

14 February: Seminar: Arts of the Punjab, International tent pegging competiton-opening ceremony (10am), Aditi Mangaldas (Kathak), Chhannu Lal Misra (6.30 pm).

15 February: Children’s declamtion contest & mask making workshop (10 am) , Workshop on crafts and textiles of Punjab (11 am), Reza Ali Khan.


Marriage certificates for a song
Bipin Bhardwaj
Tribune News Service

Hoshiarpur, February 10
Marriage certificates are reportedly easily available at the office of the Marriage Registrar here. A certificate can be obtained even if the groom and the bride concerned are not physically present in the office. These certificates are allegedly available at “throwaway prices”.

In a unique case, an NRI groom from Nangal Shaheedan village near here, got his marriage registered at the office of the Marriage Registrar-cum-Tehsildar here over six months before the actual marriage took place.

The groom, Palwinder Singh, was in Italy when his marriage with Rashika Saini of Hoshiarpur was registered here. The registration under the Hindu Marriage Act, 1955, allegedly took place in connivance with the panchayat members of the groom’s village.

The fraud came to light when Mr Mohan Singh, a resident of Salempur village, made a written complaint to the SSP, Hoshiarpur, alleging that the groom and the bride, in connivance with members of the village panchayat, produced fake documents and superimposed fake photographs to get the marriage registered on June 27, 2005.

The complainant alleged the NRI groom was in Italy at that time. His fake photographs were produced before the Registrar and the marriage was got registered. The actual marriage was solemnised in a marriage palace situated along the Old Hariana road on January 30 this year, he claimed.

He has sought intervention and directions restraining the groom from fleeing the country. The complainant has also written to the Italian Embassy for necessary action. A writ has also been filed in the Punjab and Haryana High Court.

Mr Mohan Singh said though the police had recorded statements of various witnesses, it had hardly taken any action against the guilty for the breach of trust besides cheating the government by misrepresenting facts in the office of the Marriage Registrar. Residents said many NRI grooms and brides indulged in this practice. Officials in the office of the Marriage Registrar and members of village panchayats had been actively involved in the scam, they alleged.

Efforts to contact Mr Harminder Singh, Marriage Registrar-cum-Tehsildar, Hoshiarpur, proved futile till late in the evening.


Tension in Kharar over removal of skeleton
Labourers of private land developer blamed 
Our Correspondent

Kharar, February 10
Tension prevailed in the Kharar area today when skeletal remains of a person were found lying in a choe near the cremation ground.

The remains were allegedly dug up by labourers of a private land developer from a common cremation ground located near the Basanwali Chungi in a bid to include the land in a housing project. These remains were later thrown in the choe along with the earth removed from the area.

Tempers of members of the Bangala community, who buried their dead, ran high after seeing the remains of their elder thrown in the choe. Parts of other skeletons were also found lying at various places near the cremation ground. They said disrespect had been shown to the dead by the labourers of the coloniser.

The Kharar MLA, Mr Bir Devinder Singh, the SDM, Mr Darshan Singh Sandhu, the DSP, Mr Raj Bachan Singh Sandhu, the President of the local Municipal Council, Mr Charanjit Singh, reached the scene and tried to pacify the persons who wanted to block traffic on the national highway in protest against the activities of the coloniser.

The DSP said a private coloniser, Mr V.P. Bassi, was setting up a colony near the cremation ground. The labourers employed by him were working on a part of the cremation ground presuming that the area belonged to the coloniser. A JCB machine was also used in the area and it appeared that some graves got dug up during the work. The skeletal remains of a 70-year-old, Hukma, that had surfaced during digging work were thrown in a choe near the area which were spotted by a member of the Bangala community. The body of Hukma was buried about one-and-a-half-year ago.

Mr Sandhu further said the skeletal remains were identified from the clothes by Darshan, a son of the deceased. The remains were buried once again today. The police has registered a case against the coloniser under Sections 297 and 201 of the IPC in this regard.

Mr Bir Devinder Singh said the SDM had been asked to check the revenue records to find out the exact position. Samples of the earth removed from the area were also collected.

Mr Charanjit Singh said according to revenue records the land dug up by the coloniser was part of the cremation ground. The civic body had even constructed a shed in the area for cremation purposes. He said he had asked the police to register a case against the coloniser for encroaching upon the land of the civic body and also for illegally removing earth from the area.


No poll pact with Cong in state: CPM
Tribune News Service

Jalandhar, February 10
The CPM has asserted that it will have no alliance with the Congress for the forthcoming Assembly elections in Punjab. The party, however, has clarified that it is ready for alliance with secular forces such as the Akali Dal 1920, the Lok Bhalai Party and others.

Addressing a press conference here today, Mr Balwant Singh, state secretary of the CPM, and senior leaders Mr Lehmbar Singh Taggar and Mr H.S. Minhas, said the party would not have the poll alliance with either the Congress or the SAD. “We will not join hands with any political force, which, opposes the Leftists. We will also not shake hands with the Naxals. What we will do is that we will try to curb division of secular votes,” said Mr Balwant Singh and the two leaders.

Terming Punjab as a state, which, is heading for poverty and illiteracy, the CPM has sought the extension of the tax holiday facility for Punjab on Himachal pattern.

“Punjab’s economy is at the brink of disaster. When the SAD-BJP-led government had left in 2002, Punjab’s loan was Rs 32,496 crore, but, it has increased to Rs 50,000 crore during four year rule of the Congress. Punjab has become a state of criminals, illeterate, drug abusers and peddlers and some figures suggest that drugs worth Rs 8500 crore, which, come from Afghanistan, are peddled through the state every year. Only 14 per cent of studens opt for government schools and there are no doctors or medicines in the government hospitals, which, fairly depict the pitiable situation of Punjab state,” said the CPM leaders.

Attacking the Punjab Chief Minister, Captain Amarinder Singh, Mr Balwant Singh said the CM’s statement that those, who, would commit suicides would be dealt with sternly, had anguished his party.

The CPM leaders said since industry was being shifting its base to Baddi and Nalagarh in Himachal Pradesh, the Central Government should do something to encourage people to set up industry in Punjab.


Package for farmers SAD’s poll plank
Tribune News Service

Mansa, February 10
Improving the economic lot of farmers will be the SAD’s main poll plank and on retaining power, a special package for the farm sector will be announced, stated SAD president Parkash Singh Badal, while addressing a well-attended rally at the grain market here today.

Mr Badal said fragmentation of landholdings had hit the state’s farmers hard and their earnings had declined drastically. Terming the UPA government’s decision to import wheat as “anti-farmer”, he said if the farmers were given remunerative prices of their agricultural produce, there would be no need to import wheat.

He took the Congress government to task for “burdening the farmers with power and water charges, depriving them of irrigation water, increasing fuel and fertiliser prices, pathetic power scenario and denying them debt waiver”. He alleged that the Congress regime had not generated a single job for jobless youths in the past over four years. On the other hand, ETT teachers demanding jobs were brutally beaten up many times, he charged.

He said while the education scenario was pathetic, the government schools didn’t have proper classrooms, furniture and drinking water. He also flayed the government on shortage of power and water in the state.

Highlighting religious issues, the former Chief Minister said some people were trying to weaken the Akal Takht, but they wouldn’t succeed in their evil designs. He said he would not participate in Virsa Samhal Sikh Sammelan to be held in Sirhind on February 26, as it was merely a “poll stunt” of his rivals.

Party general secretary Balwinder Singh Bhundar alleged that the Congress had caused the maximum damage to Punjab. SAD MP Sukhbir Badal alleged that Captain Amarinder Singh had implicated them in “false cases” and he had failed miserably in proving his charges.

SGPC chief Avtar Singh, senior party leaders, including Mr Sikander Singh Maluka, Mr Manpreet Badal and Mrs Paramjeet Kaur Gulshan, were also present.


SAD (A) protest against Prophet’s cartoons

Sangrur, February 10
Members of the Shiromani Akali Dal (Amritsar), led by their president Simranjit Singh Mann, held a rally at the district administrative complex here today. The rally was against the silence of the Central Government on the issue of the publication of cartoons of Prophet Mohammad in the newspapers of Denmark, France and the USA.

A delegation of the party submitted a memorandum to the Assistant Commissioner (General) in his office here to forward it to the President. The party has asked the President to convene an all-party meeting to seek cooperation from the UPA government and political parties to condemn the issue. — TNS


CPM workers stage protest
Tribune News Service

Ropar, February 10
The members of CPM yesterday staged a protest in front of the Mini Secretariat against privatisation and neglect of farmers in the state here yesterday. The protesters raised slogans against the state and Central governments and maintained that the government had failed to redress the grievance of the employees, farmers and the poor.

Senior CPM leader Balwant Singh said ‘‘besides other demands we seek the regular supply of power to farmers in the state. 


Health Dept distributing expired chlorine
Our Correspondent

Amritsar, February 10
The Health Department is allegedly distributing expired water-purifying chlorine tablets. The matter came to light when employees of the department distributed these tablets on Majitha road recently following complaints of diarrhoea and other water-borne diseases .

However, Dr SPS Dhillon, District Health Officer, when contacted feigned ignorance about it. He said: "The department is not distributing any chlorine tablets at present and did not have stock of chlorine." He said he was on leave for the past few days and had joined office only yesterday.

The boxes bearing the date April 2005, specified that the pellets were for use within six months from the date of manufacture.

The All-India Youth Association led by Mr Ravinder Kumar Sultanwind has demanded an enquiry in this regard besides action against the officers responsible for the negligence.


Tarlochan Singh bereaved

Chandigarh, February 10
Mrs Mohinder Kaur, sister of Mr Tarlochan Singh, outgoing Chairman of the National Commission for Minorities, died in Patiala yesterday. She was 67.

Her husband, Mr M.S. Sabharwal, is a retired PCS (Executive Branch) officer.

Her cremation was largely attended. TNS


Trust to spend Rs 24 cr on fort restoration
Our Correspondent

Nabha, February 10
“The Nabha Foundation Trust will spend Rs 24 crore on the restoration and renovation of Nabha Fort.” This is stated by Mr Randip Singh, MLA, Nabha, while talking to this correspondent at his residence.

The trust is run by the Khemka family of the princely state of Nabha. Mr Randip Singh added that the trust would make an agreement with the Punjab government that it would spend Rs 2 crore per year for seven years for the restoration of the lost glory of the fort.

He said that now both had reached at a pact that the agreement would be renewed after watching the progress of the restoration work after seven years. He said the remaining amount of Rs 10 crore would be spent after the renewal of the agreement.


Cong leaders seek death for depraved teachers
Tribune News Service

Jalandhar, February 10
Anguished over the shameful incident of the rape of innocent girl students by their teachers in Durjanpur in Haryana, senior Congress leaders Mr Parminder Singh and Ms Harsimrat Kaur have demanded that those who have committed the heinous crime of breaking faith of parents and have shattered the age-old and holy teacher-student bond deserved no punishment less than death penalty.

“Such elements should be shot dead. Look what they have done to the psyche parents, who, think that teachers of their wards are nothing less than Gods. They have also shattered piety attached with the relationship of a teacher and a student,” said Mr Parminder Singh, general secretary of the Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee (PPCC).

“Do such unscrupulous and devilish characters deserve any leniency? No, they should be shot at first sight,” said Ms. Harsimrat Kaur, a senior Congress leader and a member of the Punjab State Commission for Women. “We, and for that matter, all parents send their children to teachers with a belief that they would be imparted some good and valuable lessons. But, see, what lesson has been taught by the Durjanpur teachers? Is it not shameful for our society? Should we keep tolerating such incidents in a casual manner any more?” questioned Ms Harsimrat Kaur.


Action against 13 PSEB employees recommended
Tribune News Service

Patiala, February 10
The Punjab State Electricity Board vigilance authorities have indicted 13 board employees and recommended major penalty against them, according to information received here today.

Amongst the indicted persons are two SDOs and 11 junior-level employees, including junior engineers, linemen and consumer clerks.

In a case of the Lohia substation, the team has even recommended registration of an FIR against the SDO as a consumer case file was found missing.

Sarwan Singh of Naya Pind village, Shahkot, in Jalandhar district had complained that his tubewell connection had been wrongfully given to Mahinder Singh, who had paid a bribe of Rs 25,000 for it.

During inquiry, the Vigilance authorities established connivance of two linemen, a JE and an SDO in the matter. Mr Mahinder Singh had also admitted paying them for the connection.

In cases pertaining to the Samana subdivision, departmental action has been recommended against junior draftsman Hardev Singh on the complaint of Harbans Singh of Duggal Kalan village, near Patran.

In another case, major penalty has been recommended against three JEs, one consumer clerk and a linesman on the complaint of Bacchan Singh of Chalouli village for wrongly getting a tubewell connection.

In Jhoke Harihar subdivision, Ferozepore district, a JE had complained against an Additional Assistant Engineer for demanding bribe from him. The complaint was registered in January, 2002.

The investigations were conducted by SP Gurpreet Gill.


Move to name airport after Ram Singh Pathania
Tribune News Service

Gurdaspur February 10
The Punjab Government has mooted a proposal of naming the newly constructed Pathankot civil airport after regional war hero of the Rajputs Ram Singh Pathania.

Mr Pratap Singh Bajwa, PWD Culture and Archives Minister, Punjab, gave this information while talking to The Tribune. He said the proposal had already been submitted before the Union Civil Aviation Minister.

Ram Singh Pathania, who was at a tender age, decided to launch a struggle against the British. He started gathering force in the hills of Jammu. In 1848, he suddenly attacked the fort of Shahpur Kandi on the banks of the Ravi and captured it.

Jaswant Singh was named as the new king of Nurpur with Ram Singh Pathania as Wazir. Hundreds of Minhas Rajputs from Jasrota and Harchands of Parmanand rushed to join the ranks of Ram Singh Pathania.

The British under the command of Major Fisher sent columns of the 15th irregular cavalry and the 29th native infantry. A fierce battle raged between both armies. After the British used light artillery, the troops of Ram Singh Pathania moved towards the hills and waged a guerilla war.

Ram Singh Pathania died in prison at Rangoon at the age of just about 24 years. The locals sing folk songs in his praise.

The main aim of the Congressmen behind naming the airport after Ram Singh Pathania is to appease the powerful Rajput community.


Livestock chief visits semen bank
Tribune News Service

Ropar, February 10
The newly appointed Chairman of the Punjab Livestock Development Board, Mr Brij Mohan Goyal, today visited the semen bank here and enquired from officials of the Animal Husbandry Department about their working.

“I believe in work culture. All employees have to justify their work. I had visited semen banks in Nabha and Patiala to study the need for further improvement and how to get work from the officials,” he told The Tribune.

“The semen bank here is supplying 5 lakh doses to other district. We have the facility to preserve the semen doses for about 200 years,” said the Deputy Director Animal Husbandry, Mr Ram Singh.


high court
Govt told to keep Pak woman, 3 children in same jail
High Court Correspondent

Chandigarh, February 10
The Punjab and Haryana High Court today directed the Punjab Government to keep Pakistani citizen Mumtaz and her three minor children together at Central Jail, Amritsar.

This direction was issued by a Division Bench comprising Chief Justice Mr Justice D.K. Jain and Mr Justice Surya Kant during the hearing of a PIL filed by the World Human Rights Protection Council (WHRPC) through its Chairman, advocate Ranjan Lakhanpal.

In his petition, Mr Lakhanpal had sought directions to the government to shift Mumtaz and her three children, all of whom are lodged in different jails and juvenile homes in Punjab, to one place. He had also sought directions to the government to initiate steps to send the woman and her children to Pakistan at the earliest.

Mumtaz, originally hailing from Pakistan, married one Ibrahim some years ago. Three children were born out of the wedlock. About one-and-a-half years ago, Ibrahim, who hailed from Bangladesh, took Mumtaz and his children to his native place in Bangladesh, only to desert them for another woman, with whom he left for Saudi Arabia. He also took along their passport and other documents.

The petition stated that left with no option, Mumtaz and her minor children managed to somehow reach Amritsar, where they were staying, waiting for an opportunity to cross over to Pakistan. However, the police caught them on January 26 and booked them under the Foreigners' Act for staying in India with any permission.

While Mumtaz is presently lodged in Central Jail, Amritsar, her son Sohail (8) was sent to Juvenile Home, Faridkot. The other two children, 10-year-old Asha and a six-year-old son are at Nari Niketan, Jalandhar. Saying that it was inhuman to keep minor children away from their mother, the petitioner has prayed that they be kept together at one place.

Today, during hearing, Mr Lakhanpal told the court that whatever the offence of the woman, her children could not be persecuted for her alleged crimes.

Bail plea withdrawn

Hardeep Singh, the absconding former Officer on Special Duty to former Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal, on Friday withdrew his plea for grant of anticipatory bail.

Hardeep had been booked by the Punjab Vigilance Bureau on August 28, 2002, for having assets disproportionate to his known sources of income. However, Hardeep managed to escape the Vigilance Bureau dragnet and was later declared proclaimed offender.


Lawyers strike work
Tribune News Service

Bathinda, February 10
Lawyers under the banner of the local Bar Association today proceeded on an indefinite strike in protest against the alleged illegal detainment of two advocates by the police after it registered a case in connection with an objectionable SMS on a religious personality.

Mr Rakesh Kumar, a follower of Dera Sacha Sauda, had reportedly lodged a complaint with the police in this connection yesterday.

Sources said though the FIR didn’t name any of the advocates, the police rounded up advocate Inderjit Singh Mann and advocate Ramandeep Singh Sidhu last night.


Promotion of two officers cleared
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, February 10
The Central Administrative Tribunal (CAT) today vacated its interim stay on the process to appoint two IAS officers in Punjab, who were promoted against the state quota for 2004 and 2005.

Following this order, the uncertainty over the promotion of Mr Satwant Singh Johal, Commissioner of the Jalandhar Municipal Corporation, and Mr NK Wadhawan, Additional Secretary, Industries Department, has been set to rest. They had been promoted to the IAS from the state Civil Services (PCS) by the UPSC in December 2005.

On January 27, 2006, the tribunal had granted the stay after two PCS officers, Mr Suresh Kumar Sharma, Commissioner of the Ludhiana Municipal Corporation, and Mr Dipinder Singh, Additional Secretary, Department of Agriculture, challenged the promotions on the ground that the vacancy determined by the Government of India (GOI) was not as per the law.

After the tribunal passed the interim order, the affected officers through a miscellaneous application before the Bench, stated that they had already been appointed vide notification dated January 27, 2006.

While quoting some judgments, they stated that the tribunal while deciding the case of Mr Satwant Singh in September 18, 2005, had held that the vacancies determined by the Department of Personnel and Training for the remaining years, namely 2002 to 2005, would remain undisturbed as they were not under challenge. The respondents stated that they were already senior to the applicants.

After hearing the arguments, the Bench observed that the contention of the applicants could not be sustained. Since the selection process was already over, the interim order had become redundant.

The complainants in the original application have been given three weeks’ time to file their detailed reply.


J.S. Gill sworn in

Chandigarh, February 10
The Punjab Power and Irrigation Minister, Mr Lal Singh, today administered the oath of office and secrecy to Mr Jai Singh Gill as Chairman and to Mr S.S. Paul as member of the Punjab State Electricity Regulatory Commission here. — TNS


Man stabs pregnant sister
Our Correspondent

Abohar, February 10
In a bizarre incident, Nishan Singh Nihang of Amritsar yesterday stabbed his pregnant sister Narender Kaur alias Nindi (34) near Jalloki village in Sriganganagar, official sources said today.

According to information, Nindi, daughter of Mr Narain Singh, a granthi, was married to Mr Amarjit Singh of Raisinghnagar, a border township, in 1996. The couple had three daughters. For the past five years, Nindi had deserted her husband and started living with Mr Sohan Singh (27), a cousin brother, at a farmhouse near Jalloki village. All efforts made by the parents to restore her back to the husband proved futile, sources said.

Nishan Singh Nihang was called from Amritsar to convince Nindi to sever relations with Sohan Singh, she had become pregnant by now. Nishan gave a four-day ultimatum to his sister on Tuesday so she left the farmhouse along with her paramour next day. Nishan Singh found them going on a bicycle near the village and stopped them. Mr Sohan Singh fought with Nihang and ran away leaving behind Nindi. The brother stabbed her thrice with the kirpan.


Wanted criminal held
Our Correspondent

Abohar, February 10
Jagdish Bishnoi, wanted in connection with a robbery committed in Naya Bazaar, Delhi, on June 30, has been nabbed from his residence at Rawla, police control room at Sriganganagar, 40 km from here, said today.

According to information the robbery was allegedly masterminded by Nanu Ram, a former employee of Maheshwari Traders, Naya Bazaar, Delhi. Gangsters led by Ram Chander reportedly looted Rs 7.5 lakh from the shop at gunpoint on June 30, 2005, Nanu Ram had told them that the collection by the evening normally ranged between 50-60 lakh but the trader had already made heavy payments on that particular day.

Preliminary investigations indicated that the gang was based in the Sriganganagar. Nanu Ram, Navratan and Om Parkash of the same gang were nabbed a few days ago in connection with another robbery. They reportedly confessed having committed robberies. Ram Chander and another member of the gang were injured in an encounter with the police later and arrested. They told the police that Jagdish Bishnoi was expected to visit his Khanuwala residence in the Rawla area. He was yesterday arrested.


Threat to IT officials: police action awaited
Our Correspondent

Barnala, February 10
The police here has not started action who threatened and obstructed IncomeTax(IT) Department officials’ survey teams on February 1. The IT officials visited Barnala on February 1 to survey various business premises under Section 133A of Income Tax Act 1961.

When IT survey teams reached five business premises — Subhash Glass House, Dr Ashok Bansal’s clinic, Durga Plywood Industries, KB Solvex and Kanhaiya Solvex at Barnala on February 1 to conduct surveys they had to return when they were threatened and obstructed.

The police registered a case against 18 persons, including Mr Makhan Sharma, President, Municipal Council, Barnala, Mr Anil Bansal, alias Naana President of the Beopar Mandal, Barnala, Mr Dheeraj Kumar Dadhahoor a BJP leader, Mr Tarsem Lal Neeli Chhattriwala, Mr R.G. Singla, Mr Pukhraj Singla Mr Jugraj Singla, Mr Prem Chand Mr Lalit Bansal, Mr Surinder Kumar, Mr Bhushan Kumar, Mr Sanjeev Kumar, Mr Piara Lal, Dr Ashok Bansal, Mr Sat Paul and his son, Mr Diwan Chand, Mr Rajesh Kumar etc. under Sections 477, 353, 186, 506, 148, 149 and 120-B of the IPC.


Immolation bid by villager
Our Correspondent

Fatehgarh Sahib, February 10
Surinder Mehta of Chuni village in the district tried to immolate himself by sprinkling kerosene in his village this afternoon. When he was about to set himself afire, a constable, who was on duty, foiled his attempt. He was taken to the Badali Ala Singh police station and a case under Section 309, IPC, was registered against him.

Mr Varinder Kumar, SSP, said Surinder Mehta, who was running a sweetmeat shop, had failed in the business. He sold articles of his shop to Rajinder Singh of Ishan Sweets Chuni for Rs 1.25 lakh. Rajinder paid him Rs 95,000 and promised to pay the balance payment later.

Today Surinder again went to his shop and pleaded with him to pay the balance as he had to solemnise his daughter’s marriage. Sources said when Rajinder refused to give money he warned that he would commit suicide in front of his shop. But the debtor turned a deaf ear to him. The “desperate” creditor took the kerosene bottle from his shop and poured it over him. The people gathered on the spot and the constable stopped him from his act.

Appreciating the efforts of Mr Naresh Kumar, Head Constable, the SSP said a commendation certificate would be given to him and his case would be recommended for further reward.


Prime accused in robbery case arrested
Tribune News Service

Patiala, February 10
The Patiala police claims to have achieved a major breakthrough in the case pertaining to the bank robbery committed at the Punjab and Sind bank Polytechnic College branch recently with the arrest of the prime accused in the case.

Addressing a press conference, Mr Mandeep Singh Sidhu, SP (City), said the police had now arrested the main accused, Guddu, who had escaped from custody while in handcuffs on January 30.

The accused was taken into custody while trying to board a Chandigarh-bound bus from the local bus stand yesterday. Mr Sidhu said a .315 bore countrymade pistol, some cartridges and Rs 80,000 in cash was recovered from his possession.

Mr Sidhu said that acting on a tip off, a police party was constituted by Inspector Krishan Kumar Panthey under the overall charge of ASI Naseeb Singh.

The police, after nabbing Guddu, took him to the Ambala railway station from where he had taken help of a blacksmith to break free of his handcuffs. Mr Sidhu lauded the efforts of Naseeb Singh in helping the police to nab the accused.


Students asked to opt for automotive engg
Surinder Bhardwaj

Fatehgarh Sahib, February 10
According to a study, India is going to be a great market for sale of automobiles and every company is looking forward to set up unit in India. So there will be a dire need for automotive engineers.

Graduates and engineers in this stream could easily be absorbed and have the best chances of placement with attractive packages.

Similarly, in the 21st century, energy system and nuclear sciences is a new area which is in demand worldwide. Young undergraduates and graduates must adopt these fields for a bright future, said Ms Kiran Ashok, co-coordinator of International students and professor, Colleges of Ontario University, Canada, while addressing a seminar at the Regional Institute of Management and Technology, Mandi Gobindgarh, today.

She is on a tour of India to create awareness among students about career planning as well as to motivate them for study in various Canadian universities.

She said various universities in Canada, particularly Ontario, had initiated various degree programmes keeping in view requirement of the Indian market. She said the University Of Ontario Institute Of Technology (UOIT) was only the laptop university in Canada and was market-oriented, career-focused and committed to excellence.

Ms Kiran Ashok, who also heads Kaptan International Limited with headquarters in Canada, said the company had renowned educationists on its board from different universities in Canada and the USA.

Ms Kiran Ashok also had an interactive session with the students. The students made queries about foreign studies, new courses, expenses, placement packages as well as benefit to the Indian market and abroad.

Mr Hukam Chand Bansal, chairman of the institute and Mr Abhinav Ahluwalia, professor of the institute, also addressed the students.

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