L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S



AGRICULTURE

PAU budgetary deficit mounting
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 9
The budgetary deficit of Punjab Agricultural University (PAU)continues to accumulate, with the university not even getting enough grants to pay the salaries of its employees. The cumulative deficit on account of salaries to its employees has gone up to Rs 25.54 crores till 2005-2006.

According to the Punjab Agricultural University Teachers Association (PAUTA), the deficit under the salary head last year was Rs 10.55 crores despite the fact that the university has reduced the staff strength by 22 per cent.

The PAUTA disclosed that the university has not been given any contingent grant and money meeting travelling allowance. It said, the university requires Rs 8 crores for carrying out research activities commensurate to the needs of the state.

Another matter of concern, the PAUTA underlined was that the university has not credited Rs 6 crores to the GPF account of the employees due to the recurring deficit in the grant received from the government. Even the pension fund of the PAU is depleting fast.

The PAUTA said, “fast depletion of the pension fund for the past three years has made our plight even more pathetic”.

The PAU employees have not been extended any leave travel concession because of the deficit in the grant in aid for the past so many years. The PAU needs about Rs 2 crores to restore this facility.

The experts estimate that the PAU needs an additional amount of Rs 64.21 crores to meet the deficit that has occurred during the period between 2002 to 2006. From 2006 onwards, the block grant to PAU needs to be raised to about Rs 100 crores to enable the institute to meet its expenditure.

Apart from that, the PAUTA suggests, it is important to make budgetary provision for the pension in the PAU budget for the future.

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  Farmers told about water-saving techniques
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 9
The Department of Farm Power and Machinery, Punjab Agricultural University, Ludhiana, organised a training programme on laser leveller for farmers, secretaries and tractor operators of cooperative societies. The training was imparted in two batches.

K.S. Sekhon, former member of the board of management (PAU) and a progressive farmer of Nawanshahr, emphasised the need of water saving due to falling water-table at an alarming rate in the central zone of Punjab. He mentioned that use of various technologies like drip, sprinkler, cultivation on ridges and beds will go a long way to address the problem of water shortage in the state.

Dr Sewak Singh Ahuja, head of the Department of Farm Power and Machinery, who presided over the function, delved upon the technologies needed to conserve water for sustaining Punjab agriculture. This was the only resource through which production and productivity in the state could be improved further to meet the emerging challenges of the raising productivity from the limited land available with the farmers, he added.

The department had developed happy seeder technology wherein pollution could be avoided and through mulching, the soil health could also be improved, said Dr Ahuja.

Santokh Singh, who was the chief guest, distributed the certificates to the participating members at the occasion.

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EDUCATION

SIFT annual function today
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 9
The Sportking Institute of Fashion Technology will organise its first annual function ‘Avant Garde’ at Guru Nanak Dev Bhawan, tomorrow.

Manoranjan Kalia, minister of the Industries and Local Bodies Punjab, will be the chief guest of the function.

The parents, eminent personalities of the industry, principals of schools and colleges and new students of the SIFT will be present at the occasion.

The students are likely to exhibit their multiple talents in the categories like the salsa dance, fusion dance, fashion show, solo dance items, song sequences, rock band, comedy plays, bhangra etc. Prizes and awards will be given by the chief guest to the outstanding students in the academics and other co-curricular activities.

Apart from this, the excellent achievements made by the students of SIFT in the field of the garment and textile design will also be displayed on the occasion.

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PCTE students bring laurels
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 9
Guneet Kalra, BBA- first year student of the Punjab College of Technical Education (PCTE), topped in first semester university exams conducted by Punjab Technical University, Jalandhar, in December 2006.

Guneet topped the university with 87 per cent marks scoring 523 out of 600 marks.

The PCTE also bagged ninth position out of the top 10 positions in the BBA examinations. Gurpreet Kaur Aulakh of the Appejay Institute of Management bagged the second position with 85 per cent marks. Whereas Pawanjot of the DIMT, Doraha scored 508 out of 600 and stood third in the PTU examinations. 

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