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BJP’s regime was black night without moon: CM
Kangu (Mandi), October 13
The “war of words” between Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh and leader of the opposition and former CM Prem Kumar Dhumal intensified when the CM today described the Dhumal regime as the “black night without moon” and sought answer from him as why state’s share was not staked in the 2051 MW Parbati project and 800 MW projects even as funds were not a problem when the projects were assigned to the NHPC and the NTPC respectively.

Power project: devta ‘summons Virbhadra for talks’
Reckong Peo, October 13
Maheshwar Devta, a local deity of Chagaon village of Kinnaur district, has summoned Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh in his temple to hold “divine” talks on granting permission to Karcham-Wangtoo Hydro Corporation Limited, a subsidiary of Jaiprakash Associates Limited (JAL) to begin the construction work on the main tunnel, the dam and other sites in the controversial Rs 7,760-crore 1000-MW power project to be set up on the Sutlej.

Sale of acquired land at higher rate denied
Shimla, October 13
The Himachal Pradesh Housing and Urban Development Authority (HIMUDA) has denied that it has been selling acquired land at four times the cost price.

Ten injured in bus accident
Nurpur, October 13
Ten passengers of a Chambyal bus were injured when it collided with a loaded tipper coming from opposite side, near here, today.

Heavy snow on Dhauladhars
Dharamsala, October 13
The Dhauladhar ranges, overlooking the Kangra valley in Himachal Pradesh, experienced a heavy spell of snowfall, while a heavy rain lashed other areas today, plummeting temperatures in the district.








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BJP’s regime was black night without moon: CM
Tribune News Service

Kangu (Mandi), October 13
The “war of words” between Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh and leader of the opposition and former CM Prem Kumar Dhumal intensified when the CM today described the Dhumal regime as the “black night without moon” and sought answer from him as why state’s share was not staked in the 2051 MW Parbati project and 800 MW projects even as funds were not a problem when the projects were assigned to the NHPC and the NTPC respectively.

Addressing a meetings here after laying foundation stones of the Rs 1.99 crore ITI building for the handicapped, Rs. 1.37 crore bus stand and 120-room boys’ hostel of polytechnic college at Sundernagar and Rs.83 lakh Kangu-Dehar water supply scheme at Kangu. Mr Virbhadra Singh reacted to Mr Prem Kumar Dhumal’s statement charging that the Congress 53-years rule had failed to safeguard interests of Himachal.

Mr Dhumal at a press conference at Mandi yesterday in reaction to Mr Virbhadra Singh’s charge that the BJP regime plunged the state into loss of Rs. 80,000 crore by not staking equity participation in the Parbati project and Kol dam projects and the then Jan Sangh now BJP had opposed formation of Himachal.

He had cited the example of 1500 MW Nathapa Jhakhri project which has 25 per cent equity participation and state is earning Rs.1000 crore and 12 per cent free power every year from the project.

Instead Mr Dhumal had charged that the Congress regimes failed to get its due share from the BBMB projects, Pong dam and take back the Shanan project from Punjab.

Reacting to it charge Mr Virbhadra Singh accused the BJP regime under Mr Dhumal of subverting the rule of law and merit and turned the Staff Selection Board, Hamirpur and HP Service Commission into instruments of furthering the BJP’s agenda and allegedly gave jobs to a “select category” which had been proved in the court in four cases.

Mr Virbhadra Singh asked Mr Dhumal why he did not stake state’s claims in these two projects.

Mr Virbhadra Singh said he had requested Prime Minister Manmohan Singh to re-think on the Parbati and Kol dam projects keeping the state’s share in the projects on the pattern of the Nathpa Jhakhri project. “The NTPC and NHPC will be reconstituted into new companies. But the companies cited signed agreements. Mr Dhumal a man in a hurry and sold state’s share for a song and companies are not bothered about state’s share”, he stated.

Mr Virbhadra Singh explained how then Prime Ministers, late Jawahar Lal Nehru, Lal Bahadur Shastri and late Indira Gandhi took pains and constituted Himachal a full-fledged state while the then Jan Sangh and the BJP had opposed its formation. “Even today they make statements among people and their “hearts are still in Punjab” and shed crocodile tears for Himachal”, he charged.

In reaction to Mr Dhumal’s charge that the Congress failed to execute projects Mr Vibrhadra said that time funds procurement from international agencies was a problem, but they executed the Nathpa Jhakhri project and now Rampur project . “The BJP government could have done the same in Parbati and Kol dam projects”, he reiterated and sought answer for this from Mr Dhumal.

Mr Virbhadra Singh upgraded GHS Salvan and Dhawal to plus 2 level and three primary schools Badu, Alsu and Badaur to middle-level and upgraded primary health centre Dehar to community health centre.

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Power project: devta ‘summons Virbhadra for talks’
Tribune News Service

Reckong Peo, October 13
Maheshwar Devta, a local deity of Chagaon village of Kinnaur district, has summoned Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh in his temple to hold “divine” talks on granting permission to Karcham-Wangtoo Hydro Corporation Limited, a subsidiary of Jaiprakash Associates Limited (JAL) to begin the construction work on the main tunnel, the dam and other sites in the controversial Rs 7,760-crore 1000-MW power project to be set up on the Sutlej.

A communique in this regard by the deity has been sent to the CM through the District Magistrate of Kinnaur who went to the deity temple at Chagaon along with the district police chief last evening to hold talks with the deity on behalf of the state government seeking grant of permission to the company to start the construction work on this mega project.

Revealing this to The Tribune, Mr Vinay Negi, vice-president of the Karcham-Wangtoo Sangharsh Samiti, who was present in the temple when the DM held talks with the deity, said the deity had refused to hold talks with the “lower level” officials of the district administration.

A senior official of the district administration also confirmed this, saying that “there was no breakthrough in the deadlock over the construction work that had been continuing for the past over seven years”.

The samiti handed over a memorandum addressed to the Chief Secretary of the state to the District Magistrate demanding to look into the environmental hazards that were likely to be posed by the coming of this project in the region.

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Sale of acquired land at higher rate denied
Tribune News Service

Shimla, October 13
The Himachal Pradesh Housing and Urban Development Authority (HIMUDA) has denied that it has been selling acquired land at four times the cost price.

The Chief Executive Officer-cum-Secretary of the authority has clarified that notification under Section 4 of the Land Acquisition Act was issued on August 1 last year and under Sections 6 and 7 on May 6 this year. Negotiations of price by the constituted committee was held with land owners on March 3, 2006, following which agreements by land owners were signed by June 20.

The award under Section 11 was at the final stage and compensation to the land owners was being released during the current month after arranging loan from Hudco. After which the land would be mutated in the name of the authority.

The land was being acquired at the negotiated rate of Rs 7 lakh per bigha though the average cost of this land in Mandhala village was Rs 1.38 lakh per bigha and in Sansiwala Rs 8.80 lakh per bigha. However, with the consent of land owners the rate of Rs 7 lakh was negotiated and finalised.

He said due to sudden massive industrialization there was an acute shortage of residential plots in the Baddi-Barotiwala area for construction of houses.

Keeping this in view it was decided to float a plotted scheme on the land under self-financing scheme in which successful allottees would have to pay the cost of plots over a period of three years in six half-yearly instalments and 10 per cent of the earnest money.

Thus, possession of developed plots with all infrastructure facilities like designed roads, sewerage, water supply and electricity would be provided within three years. Development of infrastructure facilities, including cost of land, had to be borne by individual allottees and the tentative cost had been worked out keeping in view all such development expenses and taking into consideration that only 40 to 45 per cent of the total land would be saleable.

Further, the land had not found much favour with investors was not correct as already around 4,000 applications with earnest money against 675 plots had been received and the demand was much more than available.

Moreover, the final position would known when the scheme closed tomorrow.

The brochure of the scheme says that Mandhala and Baddi were bracketed to tell the exact location of the site, which was 3 km from Baddi and 6.5 km from Barotiwala.

It had been wrongly stated that no infrastructure facilities existed.

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Ten injured in bus accident
Our Correspondent

Nurpur, October 13
Ten passengers of a Chambyal bus were injured when it collided with a loaded tipper coming from opposite side, near here, today.

The bus was going to Jawali from Suliali in this subdivision. The driver of the bus failed to negotiate a sharp curve near Bodh.

The injured were hospitalised at the local Civil Hospital. The SDM gave Rs 5,000 as ex-gratia relief to the seriously injured victim, Sapna Devi, and free medicines for treatment of other injured passengers.

The police has registered an FIR against the bus driver, Jagir Singh.

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Heavy snow on Dhauladhars

Dharamsala, October 13
The Dhauladhar ranges, overlooking the Kangra valley in Himachal Pradesh, experienced a heavy spell of snowfall, while a heavy rain lashed other areas today, plummeting temperatures in the district.

The Dhauladhar ranges experienced a fresh spell of heavy snowfall early today and official sources said the temperatures in the entire district had registered a sharp decline.

The sky was overcast with dark clouds and by 10 a.m. it had started raining in the entire Valley followed by strong winds that uprooted trees and electricity poles at several places, disrupting power supply at several places. — UNI

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