P U N J A B    S T O R I E S


Finally, Punjab gets its first veterinary university
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 2
The Punjab Chief Minister, Capt Amarinder Singh, today inaugurated the Guru Angad Dev Veterinary and Animal Sciences University (GADVASU), the first veterinary university in Punjab.

The university has been carved out of Punjab Agricultural University amidst opposition from teachers and employees of the PAU.

The formal inauguration of the veterinary university was cancelled twice earlier as the functioning of the university had been stayed by the Punjab and Haryana High Court in response to a writ petition filed by the PAU Teachers Union. The writ was dismissed by the High Court last month after which the date for its inauguration was finalised for today.

The Chief Minister said the new university would usher in a “white revolution” in the state like the PAU ushered in the Green Revolution. He said this would help diversification in agriculture. He said this was important as the state's agrarian economy had already reached a point of saturation with returns to the farming community declining.

Capt Amarinder Singh said that 22 per cent of the peasantry constituted of small and marginal farmers with less than two acres of land holdings for which traditional agriculture was totally unsustainable and non-remunerative. “We will have to shift to allied farming to ensure better returns to our farmers and make them self-reliant,” he said.

The Chief Minister expressed grave concern over the falling water table and warned that in case the situation continued like this, Punjab would turn barren within the next 25 years. He appealed to the farmers to make judicious use of water for irrigation by making use of novel techniques of drip irrigation and micro irrigation systems. He pointed out that 70 per cent of the area had been declared black due to the overuse and no recharging.

To tackle the problem of unemployment among the youth, the Chief Minister said he was seized of the situation that frustration was brewing among them as 8 per cent of the total population was either unemployed or underemployed. He said the fact of the matter was that the agricultural sector was not in a position to provide employment to them.

The Chief Minister announced a grant of Rs 10 crore for the university against the budgetary provision of Rs 4 crore for the infrastructure upgradation and Rs 20 lakh for research and reference. He also announced to set up a regional centre of the university at Patti in Tarn Taran district to give a fillip to the production of milk and improve the quality of livestock in the Majha belt.

Animal Husbandry Minister Jagmohan Singh Kang, Vice-Chancellor D.S. Bains, Education Minister Harnam Dass Johar, Local Bodies Minister Chaudhary Jagjit Singh and Parliamentary Secretary Surinder Dawer were also present.


Pharmacists chased out of CM’s rally
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 2
Unemployed veterinary pharmacists today raised slogans against the Punjab Government for its failure to provide jobs to them.

The moment the Chief Minister, Capt Amarinder Singh, rose to speak at the inaugural function of the Guru Angad Dev Veterinary and Animal Sciences University here today, about 50-odd unemployed veterinary pharmacists rose and started shouting slogans. They were chased out of the rally by the police.

The police personnel were taken aback by the protest. The Chief Minister also stopped for a while. However, after he resumed the speech, he said the frustration of the youth was understandable. But by that time all of them had been pushed out of the venue.

The protesting pharmacists threw pamphlets listing their demands. They said the government had consistently been indifferent to their plight for all these years and they had no option but to stage a protest in front of the Chief Minister. They had announced to stage a protest a couple of days ago.

The Chief Minister said he was quite concerned about the plight of the unemployed youth in the state, but the government had limited resources at its disposal. He said: “agro industrialisation would be the best answer to the growing problem of unemployment.”

He said the rapid industrialisation and the coming over of so many mega projects to the state would generate about 16 lakh jobs.


Principals’ foreign trip raises controversy
Varinder Singh
Tribune News Service

Jalandhar, June 2
The working of Guru Nanak Dev (GND) University has once again come under a cloud as a 16-member team of principals and university administrators, which had been sent on a 10-day visit to African countries after being “hand-picked” by higher officials, has allegedly failed to submit details pertaining to the expenditure and about advance money of Rs 14 lakh taken from the university.

Earlier, the foreign trip of the principals, led by Registrar R.S. Bawa, had dashed into a controversy when Mr Verinder Pal, Finance and Development Officer (FDO) of the university, raised a number of objections over the trip and sent a letter to Chancellor Gen S.F. Rodrigues in that regard.

The “urgency” to send principals to African countries, including, Ethopia and Kenya, was seemingly so much that all objections raised by the FDO were ignored by the university top brass and, subsequently, as many as 16 principals undertook the trip.

The trip aimed at “seeking spot admissions” of African students from April 7 to 16. However, it was yet to be seen whether they were successful in their venture or not.

The non-submission of bills for expenditure made out of the advance amount of Rs 14 even after around one and half months has raised many eyebrows.

When contacted over phone, Mr Verinder Pal (FDO) said, “No bills and other details have come to us so far. These details should have been with us immediately after the conclusion of the trip.”

Raising a number of objections on the trip, Mr Verinder Pal, FDO, had reportedly shot of a letter to the Chancellor of the university in the first week of April.

The first objection was that all admissions to university courses were made on the basis of a common entrance test and the university statute did not had any clause for reservation for foreign students.

Moreover, admission of any foreign student to any university of India was regulated by the Government of India through its varied ministries.

Mr Verinder Pal had also drawn the attention of the Chancellor to the fact that the university had no jurisdiction beyond five districts of Gurdaspur, Amritsar, Jalandhar, Kapurthala and Nawanshahr, and that it could not even solicit admissions from other states.

Mr R.S. Bawa, Registrar, however, said the trip was a successful venture as the university had got about “150 students enrolled”. “We are in the process of checking documents of African students,” he said.


Capt Kalia’s statue to be installed on June 9
Tribune News Service

Nangal, June 2
After four years the statue of the young martyr of Kargil, Capt Amol Kalia, will be installed in Nangal on June 9 by Chief Minister Amarinder Singh. The statue of Captain Kalia has been in the store room of the Municipal Council for proper place.

Its installation went on delaying for the past four years. Some view it due to a tussle between the Congress and the BJP for a mileage over the installation of the statue.

First former BJP Food and Supplies Minister in the Akali government, Madan Mohan Mittal, laid the foundation stone of the park to be developed on the Nangal-Chandigarh road and statue of Captain Kalia to be installed there 1999-2000.

When the Congress come to power, the place was shifted saying the old place was coming in the construction of the new road here. When another place was selected it was not cleared by the parents of Capt Kalia. Thereafter the place was shifted to Shivalik Avenue Park on NFL land. Then General Manager of the NFL objected to the installation of statue there.

Now as the present General Manager of the NFL has agreed that they had no objection if the statue of the Captain Kalia was installed in the Shivalik Avenue Park and the father of Captain Kalia also agreed to it. It has been decided to install the statue there as the place near the road from Nangal to Mehatpur in Una (HP). People of Punjab and Himachal could pay homage to the martyr here said local MLA and Parliamentary Secretary Industry and Commerce, K.P.S. Rana.

“There is no question of politics here, installation of statue is delayed as we are in search of better place for the martyr who sacrificed his life for the country”, he added.


DSP convicted in custodial death case
Tribune News Service

Sangrur, June 2
Mr D.S. Malwai, Additional Sessions Judge, Sangrur, today convicted the then Sherpur DSP Gurjit Singh, the then Sherpur SHO Kulwinder Singh, Sub-Inspector Yudhistar Singh, Head Constable Chamkaur Singh, C II Sohan Singh and Constable Mukhtiar Singh in a case of custodial death of Ravinder Singh (25) of Kala Bula village, near Sherpur. Ravinder Singh had died in the custody of the Sherpur police on January 18, 2004, due to torture.

All accused were convicted under Sections 143, 364, 342, 302 and 149 of the IPC. However, the quantum of sentence will be announced by the court tomorrow.

In this case, an FIR was registered on January 19, 2004, by the Sherpur police on the complaint of Mr Pal Singh, father of the deceased, Ravinder Singh. The police had registered the case against Kulwinder Singh, then SHO of Sherpur police station, and other members of the police party under Sections 302, 323 and 34 of the IPC. However, on the statements of Mr Pal Singh and other witnesses, the then Sherpur DSP Gurjit Singh was also named as one of the accused in this custodial death case.

As per the statement of Mr Pal Singh, a police party, headed by SHO Kulwinder Singh,on January 18, 2004, took Ravinder Singh to Sherpur police station and tortured him at the police station due to which his son died in police custody. 


Sanjivni a boon for ruralites
Sarbjit Dhaliwal
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 2
Banta Singh got his knees replaced at the DMC Hospital, Ludhiana. His hospital bill was nearly Rs 2 lakh. Nasib Kaur was suffering from a breast ailment. She was operated upon in a Ludhiana hospital. Her bill was for Rs 1.09 lakh. Mr Kulwinder Singh of Amritsar went through a heart surgery. His medical bill was of Rs 1.75 lakh. Their bills were paid off by Sanjivni, a health care scheme launched for members of Cooperative Societies in rural areas in Punjab, of which they are members.

And there are so many like Banta, Nasib and Kulwinder who got major surgical treatment done without paying from their pockets. What was common among all these patients is that they belong to rural areas.

Sanjivni has started paying dividends for those who adopted the scheme by paying premium of Rs 330.60 (service tax included) of the health insurance scheme designed, executed and implemented for them by the Punjab Cooperative Department. The principal member of the family has to pay Rs 330.60 as premium while other family members can become part of the scheme by just paying Rs 33.06 per head.

Mr Viswajit Khanna, Registrar, Cooperative Societies, Punjab, who pushed this scheme through in spite of some impediments, said he was very happy with scheme. “For me nothing can be more pleasing than to see a small farmer, who otherwise cannot spare even a few hundred rupees for treatment, being operated upon for heart ailments without paying a single penny,” said Mr Khanna.

The scheme was launched only nine weeks ago. Already 1,083 patients, many of them suffering from serious diseases of heart, kidney etc, have got the treatment by just showing the membership card of the scheme. The insurance company has cleared the bills worth Rs 1.63 crore of various hospitals where members of Sanjivni got the treatment.

There are 203 private and 164 government civil hospitals on the panel of the scheme. And all the major private hospitals and medical colleges-cum-hospitals are on the panel. And same is true in case of government hospitals. The PGI is also on the panel. However, money has to be paid in cash in the PGI but it is reimbursed by Sanjivni. There are 5.73 lakh members of the scheme across the state.

“We want to expand the scheme to urban areas,” said Mr Khanna. He said in Ludhiana as many as 200 patients had been treated under this scheme. “The scheme would change the health profile of the state,” he asserted. Under the scheme, a third party administrator has been hired to prepare bills and get it cleared from the insurance company concerned. The patients, who get treatment under the scheme has to do nothing.

He has been issued a card by the Cooperative Society with regard to the adoption of Sanjivni by him or her. By showing the card, one can get admitted to any hospital on the panel of the scheme.

Mr Khanna said negotiations were going on with the TATA Foundation for helping those who could not pay the premium of the scheme. 


Takht letter threatens SAD-BJP pact
Ajay Banerjee
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 2
A letter written by Jathedars of the Akal Takht and three other Sikh high priests against the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) has driven a wedge between the BJP and the Parkash Singh Badal-led Shiromani Akali Dal.

The smouldering row is now even threatening the ten-year old alliance between the electoral allies in the state.

Taking offence at the letter, the RSS which is the “mentor organisation” of the BJP has asked the top brass of the party to “dis-associate” itself from the Akalis in view of the letter. Serious back door efforts are on to bring about a rapprochement. Akali Dal supremo Parkash Singh Badal has been approached by the BJP leaders recently to sort out the matter at the earliest to avoid any adverse political fall out. Mr Badal has been asked to talk to the high priests.

The RSS is upset at the hurt caused to its pride and has sought a withdrawal of the letter and also a statement or letter from the high priests clarifying their stance, senior leaders of the BJP confirmed these developments to The Tribune.

Mr Badal has reportedly assured the BJP that he will resolve the issue. Both parties need each other to put up a joint front against the Congress in the forthcoming Assembly elections, however, the sentiments of the RSS have to be kept in mind, said a senior BJP leader.

It may be mentioned that the high priests had collectively written a letter to the Akalis warning them that the RSS was showing false concern for the Sikhs and it was actually an “anti-panth” body. About two weeks ago, Mr Jaitley, while addressing a press conference at Chandigarh, had told mediapersons: “We have been hurt as the RSS was very patriotic organisation and we are sorting out the matter”. He, however, had said the party will contest the elections in alliance with the SAD.

Now its turns out that things are far more serious than perceived earlier. BJP leaders have admitted that the RSS leadership was “very unhappy” at the turn of events in Punjab in the past few weeks. 


‘De-list kandi land from PLP Act’
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 2
Taking up the contentious issue of lands that are otherwise listed under the Punjab Land Preservation Act (PLPA), 1900, but are being treated as forest land for all practical purposes, the Punjab unit of the BJP today announced its decision to launch a signature campaign demanding to delist these lands from rules and regulations that govern forest areas.

The National General Secretary of the party, Mr Harjit Singh Grewal, today announced BJP's plan saying that more than 66,166 hectares of land in the Kandi (sub-mountainous) region of the state was listed under PLPA. People of the area were fed up as their land were being wrongly governed by rules that apply to forest areas.

About 470 villages in districts of Gurdaspur, Hoshiarpur, Nawanshahr, Ropar and Mohali are listed under the PLPA. There was no need to club these lands with forest lands. The state government has all the powers to denotify the said land from the PLPA, he said. A substantial number of these 470 villages fall in the Lok Sabha segments of Mr Vinod Khanna (Gurdaspur) and Avinash Rai Khanna (Hoshiarpur) of the BJP.

Meanwhile, BJP's youth leader Vineet Joshi, who along with Mr Vijay Sampla, State General Secretary of the BJP, had accompanied Mr Grewal told newsmen that ground realities have changed in these areas. He said the DCs concerned had not even bothered to invite objections from members of the public. They have just been extending the notification to keep these areas under PLPA. Mr Joshi demanded a fresh survey.

Meanwhile, it may be mentioned that in March this year, the Government of India had agreed in-principle to grant exemption for these lands but had imposed conditions.


Villages ‘not getting’ potable water
Our correspondent

Hoshiarpur, June 2
Despite tall claims of the Punjab Government regarding the supply of potable water in almost all the villages of state, inhabitants of Kot and Patial villages located on the border of Himachal Pradesh in the Kandi sub-mountainous area of Hoshiarpur district are not getting water supply in the blazing heat these days.

Mr Sukhraj Sharma, Sarpanch of Patial village, criticised officers of the Public Health Department for not completing the proposed water supply scheme on account of which the villages were facing acute water shortage.

On account of incomplete water supply scheme, people of both villages have to get water either from wells or from khads (rivulets). But due to continuous dry spell in the area, wells and khads have also dried up causing great inconvenience to the inhabitants.

Mr Sukhraj Sharma said that the state government had sanctioned Re 2.44 crore for the water supply scheme after a great struggle by the people of the area for six villages viz. Kot, Patial, Behra, Barikhad, Tappa and Barum about two-and-a-half years ago. A tubewell had been installed at Behra village and an overhead reservoir for the water supply had been constructed at Kot.

He alleged that incomplete pipeline for the water supply in these villages had been laid haphazardly by the contractor due to which water leakage had started as a result of which water was not reaching to the tail-end villages.

He said that he had raised the issue in khula darbar of Deputy Commissioner on January 17 at Garhdiwala in which the officers concerned had assured them to complete the work by the end of March 31, but they failed in fulfilling their promise.

He also brought the matter to the notice of Mr Avtar Henry, Minister of Rural Water Supply, during his visit to Dholbaha village on April 21, but the matter was still hanging fire.

Mr R. L. Dhanda, Executive Engineer, Public Health Department, Hoshiarpur, said that the proposed water supply scheme had already been completed and the inhabitants of the aforesaid villages were getting potable water.

He said that Mr Sukhraj Sharma was insisting on laying pipeline in all the mohallas of his village which was not possible. He alleged that the said the Sarpanch was in a habit of making complaints against government officers.


Another chained mental patient gets freedom
Tribune News Service

Faridkot, June 2
The district administration today came to the rescue of Amar Singh, a mental patient from Marar village who had been chained for the past seven years, and admitted him to Guru Gobind Singh Medical College and Hospital.

The Deputy Commissioner, Ms Rakhi Gupta Bhandari, visited the village where Amar’s mother Jasvir Kaur told her that he had passed plus one and had been a good kabaddi player before he fell ill. He started looking for a job after the death of his father Deedar Singh. He also tried his luck for a job in the Army and the police, but lost his mental balance following failure in both attempts. He used to abuse villagers and attack them with stones.

He was treated at various hospitals in Faridkot, Kot Kapura, Bathinda, Ludhiana and Amritsar, but to no avail. His mother also approached some tantriks, but his condition kept on deteriorating. She rued that she also sold off her 2.5 acres for the treatment of her son. She said he used to flee from home and injure himself, which forced her to chain him.

The DC assured Jasvir Kaur that her son would be extended treatment free of cost by the Red Cross, society which would also bear the cost of meals for his attendant.

The DC told reporters that the district administration had already provided treatment to two mental patients — Kala Singh of Mani Singhwala and Malkit Singh Marak, both of whom were leading a normal life, while six others were under treatment.


PSEB to release more connections
Tribune News Service

Patiala, June 2
In a significant step, the Punjab State Electricity Board (PSEB) management has decided to give unlimited number of temporary power connections for tubewell motors to the farmers for the paddy transplantation season scheduled to start from June 10.

In its meeting held here late evening today, the PSEB management has decided that no applicant for the temporary power connection for tubewell motor for paddy cultivation should be refused and should be accommodated by following the principle of power connection on demand.

Mr Hardiyal Singh Kamboj, Administrative Member, PSEB, while talking to TNS said that farmers would be given temporary power connections for their tubewell motors for the coming paddy season from all the under load feeders of PSEB. He added that due to augmentation of power distribution system, almost all the feeders had turned under load and could be used for putting the load of temporary power connections on the same.


Traders allege cheating by govt
Chander Parkash
Tribune News Service

Patiala, June 2
Is the decision to give free electricity to all members of Scheduled Caste community political corruption on the part of the Congress government of Punjab?

This question is being hotly debated by traders, industrialists, unemployed youths and other sections of society after the Punjab Government announced the facility of free electricity upto 200 units to all members of Scheduled Caste community on Wednesday.

As per the information gathered by TNS, with the decision of giving free electricity upto 200 units to all members of Scheduled Caste category, the Punjab Government will have to pay Rs 1200 crore to the Punjab State Electricity Board (PSEB) from its own kitty per annum.

Mr Madan Lal Kapoor, president, Punjab Pradesh Beopar Mandal, while alleging that the Congress government had been befooling traders for the past four-and-half years by not abolishing octroi, said the Congress would have to pay a heavy price in the coming Assembly elections.

Mr Jaswinder Singh Sidhu, state president, Unemployed Elementary Teachers Union, Punjab, said the Punjab Government should explain how it would manage crores of rupees to give free power to Scheduled Castes when it had no money to create jobs.

A major section of employees of PSEB has demanded that they should be given the facility of free 200 units of electricity per month. A section of industrialists asked why they were being denied subsidy for the past one decade when the government could afford free power to SCs.


CM seeks details on relief for Ropar residents
Kiran Deep
Tribune News Service

Ropar, June 2
Keeping in view the resentment of the Zila Bachao Sangharsh Committee, the Chief Minister has sought details from local MLA K.P.S. Rana regarding the suitable compensation to be provided to residents of the district.

The committee has threatened to launch an agitation from June 15 if the government fails to fulfil its promise to compensate residents of Ropar for their losses after the carving out of Mohali district.

In a letter to Mr Rana, the Chief Minister has asked him to provide details about the promises he made to the committee when it ended its agitation.

Committee chairman Dr R.S. Parmar has submitted a memorandum to the Chief Minister, demanding that more subdivisions from other districts be added to Ropar district, divisional status be granted to Ropar and more industrial units be set up in Ropar.

In his reply to the Chief Minister, Mr Rana wrote that more subdivisions from other districts be added to Ropar and Ropar be given divisional status.


Experts favour conditional quota
Tribune News Service

Patiala, June 2
A symposium on “Is Reservation in National Interest”, organised by the Global Punjab Foundation, Patiala, at Punjab Senior Secondary School, Chhoti Baradari, Patiala, today, evolved a consensus on granting “conditional reservation keeping in mind its larger social, psychological and economic implications and parameters”.

In his presidential address, former chairman of the Punjab School Education Board Dr Kehar Singh, urged for the creation of an experts committee by the Supreme Court to look into the broader parameters for a long-lasting solution to problem.

“All those who are dispossessed, suppressed or oppressed in manner, irrespective of any caste, class or creed, should be given social justice. While the creamy layer in reserve categories should be dispossessed of corollary benefits, those poor among the open categories should also not be punished,” he added.

Former president of the Indian Medical Association Dr O.P.S. Kande opined that reservation, particularly in medical profession, would prove fatal to the Indian societal fabric.

Referring to a letter written by former Prime Minister Pandit Jawahar Lal Nehru in 1960 to all state governments warning against hazards of reservation, he said sub-standard medical practitioners would do more damage than good. Political parties, to generate balanced power, had already created a vertical split in society.

Economist Dr R.S. Ghuman said the government should conduct surveys into false beneficiaries of reservation since independence. Human deprivation index should be taken into consideration, he added.

Dr Jatinder Pal Singh Bhopal said reservation was must for the uplift of downtrodden.

Foundation chairman Dr Harjinder Walia, secretary-general Dr Gurmeet Maan, general secretary Raminder Singh Wasu, were among those who took part in the discussion.


PSEB staff stage dharna

Patiala, June 2
The Punjab State Electricity Employees Joint Front staged a dharna in front of the circle (Patiala) office in protest against the proposed privatisation of the board.

The rallyists were also protesting against the implementation by the board of the Electricity Act-2003. TNS


Bail applications rejected
Our Correspondent

Abohar, June 2
The District and Sessions Judge, Sriganganagar, yesterday rejected the applications of certain residents of Ludhiana, Abohar, Jalandhar and Gurdaspur seeking anticipatory bail in a matrimonial cheating case.

According to information, Ms Jasveer Kaur, a resident of the Partap Colony, Sriganganagar, had on April 27 lodged an FIR against Baksheesh Singh Bawa, a resident of Ludhiana, and his relatives alleging fraud in a matrimonial alliance. Others named in the FIR include Bawa’s mother, Mrs Surjit Kaur, sisters Surinder Kaur Habbowal, Paramjit Kaur Guru Ram Dass Nagar, Jalandhar, Sonu Bala Selasaria, Gurdaspur, and Rajinder Singh Abohar.

The complainant said that the “accused” had projected Baksheesh Singh as proprietor of a shop where he worked as an ordinary employee.

After marrying her daughter to Baksheesh, the complainant Jasveer Kaur, realised that her family had been cheated.

Baksheesh Singh has been arrested by the police and has been remanded in judicial custody. The FIR was registered on instructions of the court.


Govt issued legal notice
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 2
A former member of the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee, Mr Amrinder Singh, has issued a legal notice to the Punjab Government through its Secretary, Revenue, in connection with the revenue estate of Beas, district Amritsar.

He has claimed that nine kanals of land in Wraich village was gifted in 1932 in the name of Guru Granth Sahib. It was a gift of land. From 1932 to September 28, 1985 the land stood in the name of Guru Granth Sahib. In September 1985 the name of Guru Granth Sahib was removed from the revenue records. This had created confusion, he claimed at a press conference here.

He demanded that the government should hold an inquiry into this embezzlement of the property of Guru Granth Sahib. He also demand that officials who were guilty of committing the act should be brought to book and revenue records are rectified and the status of Guru Granth Sahib as owner of the land be restored.


BKU (Ekta) men take out protest march
Our Correspondent

Abohar, June 2
A clash between a section of insecticide/pesticide dealers and workers of the Bharatiya Kisan Union (Ekta) was averted today as the latter agreed not to violate the prohibitory orders imposed under Section 151 of the CrPC against staging a dharna within a radius of 100 metre of a shop located in the old grain market here.

The police had virtually cordoned off the area in the morning near the main bazaar. It was even otherwise not feasible to sit on a dharna in the market due to ongoing reconstruction of floor there.

The authorities had taken all possible precautionary measures. The riot-control squad was kept ready. Upon persuasion by some policemen, BKU (Ekta) workers, who had assembled at Gurdwara Singh Sabha, resolved to sit on a dharna outside the old tehsil complex.

On the other hand, an association of pesticide dealers had asked the shopkeepers through a permanent public address system fitted in the main bazaar to come to help them if targeted by the union.

Workers of the BKU (Ekta) later took out a protest march. They first went to the office of the Deputy Superintendent of Police and then covered a 2-km distance to sit on dharna at the subdivisional complex before submitting a memorandum to the SDM.


Officiating DEO suspended
Tribune News Service

Sangrur, June 2
Mr Parmod Kumar, officiating District Education Officer (Elementary), Sangrur, has been suspended from May 13 for remaining more than 48 hours in police/judicial custody in a case registered against him and R.K. Enterprises, a firm, for bungling in the sale and purchase of computers.

The suspension order was issued on May 30 last but it was received by the District Education Office (Secondary) here on June 1. The DEO (Secondary) forwarded the order to the district education office (elementary), which received it today.

As per the order, sent to the DEO (Secondary) by the Punjab Education Department, an FIR had been registered against Mr Parmod Kumar, Deputy DEO (Elementary), Sangrur, having additional charge of DEO (Elementary), Sangrur, under Sections 13 (1) and 13 (2) of the PC Act and Sections 420,465, 467, 468, 409 and 120-B of the IPC at Sangrur police station and he was arrested on May 13 last. As Mr Parmod Kumar had spent more than 48 hours in police/judicial custody, so he has been suspended under Rule 4.2 A of the Punjab Civil Services (Punishment and Appeal) Rules 1970 from May 13 last.

During suspension, his headquarter will be the office of the Director, Education Department (Elementary), Punjab, at Chandigarh.

The officiating DEO was arrested on May 13 and he remained in police/judicial custody for several days. On May 22 he was granted bail by a court.

In the findings of an inquiry report regarding the supply of sub-standard computer systems to the Block Resource Centres (BRCs) under the Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA) and purchase of 11 computers for 11 BRCs under SSA in the Sangrur district, it was mentioned that the computers supplied by R.K. Enterprises were of poor quality while the DEO (Elementary) was required to purchase the HCL computers for Rs 23,480 each but actually an inferior model was supplied, which was available in the market for Rs 9,990.


Admn gears up for mid-day meal scheme
Our Correspondent

Fatehgarh Sahib, June 2
To implement the mid-day meal scheme in the primary
schools of the district effectively from July 1, Ms Jaspreet Talwar, Deputy Commissioner today held a meeting of the district officials concerned at Bachat Bhavan. As the state government has decided to launch the scheme in a new manner by involving community, particularly mothers of students by forming mother’s self-help groups through motivation, these groups would be given the money meant for cooking.

The Deputy Commi-ssioner, who has been made the nodal officer for the scheme, said she had started exercise in this regard, and officials of three departments had been entrusted the task.

Briefing the officials, she said a cluster of 15 schools would be constituted and these would submit the requirement of materials, which would be forwarded to the FCI, and PUNSUP, being nodal agency, would deliver these to schools. She said Village Education Committees would be given Rs 2,000 each from the Sarv Sikhya Abhiyan to purchase utensils. She said a standard designed kitchen and store would be constructed in schools and gas connections would be provided.

She directed the Revenue Department officials and BDPOs to complete the demarcation of berms of all roads by June 7. She urged the people not to encroach upon the berms, as this affects the construction of roads.


NRI booked in fraudulent marriage case
Our correspondent

Hoshiarpur, June 2
A case of fraudulent marriage by an NRI with an innocent girl was reported at the Mahilpur police station on Wednesday.

According to the police sources, Seema Kumari, daughter of Mr Sat Pal a resident of local Ward No, 9, stated in her complaint that she was married, to NRI Sushil Parkash Chand, son of Roop Chand of the local Ward No. 5 on December 8, 2004. After 20 days of marriage, Sushil Parkash Chand left for the USA where he was working. She alleged that when she started pressing him to take her to America, Sushil Parkash Chand insisted her on divorce. When she refused to do so he threatened her for dire consequences. Later she came to know that her husband was already married. He solemnized his second marriage with her without divorcing his first wife.

The Mahilpur police has registered a case under Sections 420 and 406 of IPC against NRI Sushil Parkash Chand.


Boy killed in jhuggi fire
Our Correspondent

Hoshiarpur, June 2
Imran (6), a son of Samsul of Jamalpur of Aligarh district (UP) was burnt alive when a devastating fire broke out in the jhuggis of migrant labourers at Tuto Mazara village, about 30 km from here on the Hoshiarpur-Chandigarh road this afternoon.

According to Mr Harminder Singh, SDM, Garhshankar, all the migrant labourers, including women, were away to their routine work when the fire broke out. When their children raised a hue and cry, inhabitants of the adjoining area rushed to the spot, controlled the fire and saved 16 jhuggis. However, three jhuggis were reduced to ashes. The cause of fire was yet to be ascertained.

Mr D. K. Tiwari, Deputy Commissioner, Hoshiarpur, said that immediate relief of Rs 5,000/- had been given to the family of the deceased. Apart from this, an ex gratia grant of Rs 50,000 would also be given to the family.

He said new jhuggis were being provided to all the victim families. Besides, household articles and ration were being given to them by the District Red Cross Society.


Man killed
Our Correspondent

Amritsar, June 2
Kashmir Singh of Mehta village was allegedly killed by his nephew, Paramjit Singh, and his uncle, Sarup Singh, following a tiff over watering the fields.

A case under Section 302, IPC, has been registered at Mehta police station and the accused are at large. The incident took place on Wednesday evening. 


Education Dept employee in VB net
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 2
A team of the Vigilance Bureau, Punjab, tonight conducted a raid at the residence of a Superintendent of the Education Department in Chandigarh and recovered documents of property and expenses much beyond his known sources of income.

A case of disproportionate assets has been registered against Mr Sohan Singh, Grade-I Superintendent. Sources in the Bureau said the documents of property totaled Rs 70 lakh. 


BBA(I) results today
Tribune News Service

Amritsar, June 2
The results of the BBA (I) examination of Guru Nanak Dev University held in April, 2006, would be declared tomorrow and will be available on the university website www.gnduonline.org, after 5 p.m. the same day, Dr. R.S. Bawa, Registrar, said here today. 


Orientation course for teachers

Amritsar, June 2
Dr. Kanwarjit Singh, DPI (Colleges), Punjab, has highlighted the role of teachers as facilitators as well as catalysts who motivate students.

Dr Singh stated this while inaugurating a four-week general orientation course-68 (GOC) in Academic Staff College of the Guru Nanak Dev University here today. — TNS


Course introduced

Ropar, June 2
A professional and job-oriented course computer network certification (CCNA) has been introduced by IET Bhaddal. TNS


Bank reviews progress of schemes
Our Correspondent

Fatehgarh Sahib, June 2
The State Bank of Patiala Wednesday organised a meeting under the chairmanship of Mr Dharm Pal Gupta, ADC(G), to review the progress of various government-sponsored schemes.

He advised heads of various government departments and representatives to coordinate with banks for the disbursement of sanctioned loans within a week.

Mr Ashwani Mahajan, AGM, NABARD, said 885 self-help groups had been formed in the district and 704 had been provided loans by various banks.

Mr S.S. Kharaud urged the banks to sanction the cases sponsored under the PMRY schemes within 10 days to enable the beneficiaries to get the necessary training and to avail the loan.

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