P U N J A B    S T O R I E S


Ban on non-basmati export
Levy raj may return
Sanjay Bumbroo
Tribune News Service

Amritsar, October 20
The Central government is contemplating taking harsh measures, including imposition of levy, to meet the high procurement needs of the country.

Senior functionaries of the Food Corporation of India (FCI) have moved this suggestion after a meeting with various rice milling exporters’ associations as this could be the only way to resolve the crisis in view of the ban on the export of the non-basmati rice by the government.

Chairman of the FCI Alok Sinha had moved this proposal after detailed discussions with the All-India Rice Exporters Association and pointed out that there was need to build up buffer food stocks for the PDS and for various welfare schemes undertaken by the government.

President of AIRMA Vijay Setia said that the reported decision regarding levy was fraught with dangerous consequences as the sharbarti crop had already been sold while PUSA 1121 crop had already started entering the market followed by the basmati crop He said at this juncture the levying of rice could be economically disastrous for the industry.

The Punjab Rice Millers and Exporters Association today resented the move to bring back the levy regime. Senior functionary of the association K.R.S. Sobti described the reported move as a retrograde step which would stifle the rice trade and would hamper exports.

Meanwhile, the millers and exporters continued to boycott the lifting of sharbati and PUSA 1121 variety which had resulted in fall of the prices all over the state. 


Badal orders bridge on Kali Bein
Enjoys performances by Shubha Mudgal, Manjari

Kapurthala, October 20
Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal has announced immediate construction of a bridge on Kali Bein by the irrigation department to save Kanjli wetland and its flora and fauna.

He was addressing the gathering at the 6th Jassa Singh Kapurthala Heritage Festival here late this evening. He said the government would ensure that Kanjli wetland remained intact.

The Chief Minister enjoyed the performance by Shubha Mudgal and Manjari Chaturvedi. He released a souvenir on the festival.

Badal said Kapurthala had a rich heritage and a legacy in classical music. The Punjab tourism department had been already implementing “Destination Kapurthala” project at a cost of Rs 3.61 crore to promote tourism in the Kapurthala-Sultanpur Lodhi tourist circuit.

Early in the morning, the Chief Minister visited heritage sites, including Darbar Hall and Baghi Khana. — UNI

Hazipur to have NAC

Bipin Bhardwaj reports from Mukerian: Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal has assured residents of Hazipur, near here, of setting up a notified area committee in the region.

The Chief Minister was addressing a gathering at Dashmesh Public School here today on the second death anniversary of Kuldeep Singh Chak, an SGPC member who was shot dead by certain persons of the locality.

Badal expressed sympathy with the family of Chak. He appreciated his efforts for imparting quality education to children of his area.

He assured the gathering that a subdivisional-level court would be set up at Mukerian shortly and the construction of the Mukerian tehsil building would be completed soon.

Earlier, he laid the foundation stone of the Kuldeep Singh Chak Memorial Senior Secondary School, being constructed by the local Guru Gobind Singh Educational Trust. He announced a grant of Rs 5 lakh for the school.

Badal, however, kept mum on the demand for a thermal plant in Mukerian, raised by local MLA Urmesh Shakar.

Besides former SGPC chief Bibi Jagir Kaur, Hoshiarpur MP Avinash Rai Khanna and chief parliamentary secretary Desh Raj Dhugga, senior leaders of the SAD and the BJP paid homage to Kuldip.


Laws alone cannot stop female foeticide: CJ
Tribune News Service

Amritsar, October 20
Chief Justice of Punjab and Haryana High Court Vijender Jain here today called for change in the mindset to curb female foeticide in Punjab.

He said laws alone could not check foeticide and the problem could be rooted out if people gave up age-old belief that only a male child could bring them joy.

Mr Justice Jain said so far there had been only one conviction for foeticide in Haryana and the number was merely four in Punjab.

The Chief Justice was in the city today to attend a seminar on “Eradication of Female Foeticide and Drug de-Addiction” at S.R. Government College for Women here organised by the Punjab Legal Services Authority, in collaboration with the district administration and the Bar Association. He also inaugurated a special Lok Adalat in the Judicial Courts complex.

Later, at a press conference, Mr Justice Jain said there was definitely need for the induction of more judges for speedy disposal of cases.

Advocate-general, Punjab, H.S.Mattewal announced grant of Rs 20 lakh on behalf of the Chief Minister to the Amritsar Bar Association.

Minister for health and family welfare Laxmi Kanta Chawla was also present. Justice Mehtab Singh Gill, executive chairman, Legal Services Authority, Chandigarh, was the guest of honour. B.S. Sialka, president, Amritsar Bar Association also expressed views.


Dussehra venue: Cong, BJP on collision course
Ashok Sethi

Amritsar, October 20
The failure of the administration to resolve issue of Dussehra celebrations venue in the Chheharta constituency of the city has brought the Congress and the Bharatiya Janata Party onto a collision course.

Spearheading the campaign for organising the Dussehra celebrations at grain market in Chheharta Congress MLA O.P. Soni said come what may he would not budge on the issue as he along with the Narayangarh Panch Rattan Krishna Temple Committee (NPRKT) had been celebrating this festival at the same venue for many years. He said the SAD-BJP alliance had been trying to sabotage their plans by trying to usurp the venue by organising ‘bhoomi pujan’ led by BJP MP Navjot Singh Sidhu. He said he would support the NPRKT whatever decision it took in this regard.

Keeping their cards close to the chest members of the committee had an emergency meeting in the evening they would reveal their plan about the celebration tomorrow and their attempt would be defuse tension which had gripped the once industrial township.

Deputy commissioner Kahn Singh Pannu said the BJP had taken prior permission for celebrating the Dussehra festival and would make elaborate security arrangement to thwart any untoward incident.

According to sources the Congress thousands of party workers would participate in the tomorrow’s protest rally to be organised from Putlighar to Chheharta against the police for registering cases against its workers. They said they would not allow the BJP-SAD combine to hold the Dussehra celebrations at their designated venue.

Rajinder Mohan Singh Chhinna, who is spearheading the campaign on behalf of the BJP said the party would hold the Dussehra celebrations at the venue and had decided to invite people from all walks of life in a spirit of festivity and added the party was against any ill-will towards their rivals. He said Sidhu would be chief guest and health mMinister Laxmi Kanta Chawla would grace the celebrations.


Dhindsa distributes funds
Our Correspondent

Barnala, October 20
Member of Parliament Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa, while toeing the line of Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal, has reiterated that though there is a difference of opinion between the SAD and the BJP over certain issues, if there is any particular issue that is a bone of contention, it would be resolved soon.

Dhindsa was here to preside over a function to distribute aid at the local Bansal Palace. He distributed cheques worth Rs 10 lakh from his MPLAD fund among representatives of 16 panchayats of the Barnala Assembly segment.

Earlier, he addressed a meeting of party workers where the latter raised the issue of non-cooperation by bureaucrats. They said their voices went unheard in the administration. Dhindsa assured them that he would speak to officers concerned about their grievances. He said joint district-level committees comprising SAD and BJP workers would be constituted soon to coordinate with the officials concerned, he added.


Minister-MLA tussle reaches flashpoint
Varinder Walia
Tribune News Service

Amritsar, October 20
Conflict between BJP’s health and family welfare minister Laxmi Kanta Chawla and Akali MLA Virsa Singh Valtoha over non-registration of a criminal case against Khehra Nursing Home, Valtoha, has reached flashpoint. It has been alleged that during a raid at the nursing home three months ago it was “detected” that the hospital was involved in illegal abortions of female foetuses. But, no case was registered against the owner of the nursing home following intervention of the Akali leader.

Valtoha, at a public conference at Bhura Kona village yesterday, held the minister responsible for the dismal health services in the border area. Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal was also present there.

On the other hand, the Laxmi Kanta Chawla today briefed visiting Chief Justice of the Punjab and Haryana High Court Vijendra Jain on the case. Talking to The Tribune, she said she had sought intervention of the Chief Justice for taking action against the nursing home.

Civil surgeon Amrit Kaur had raided nursing homes in Patti Maur and Valtoha. She had allegedly found ultrasound machines there whereas the nursing homes were neither registered for medical termination of pregnancy nor for an ultrasound examination.

While a case had been registered against a nursing home based at Patti Maur, no action had been taken against the nursing home at Valtoha. A number of reminders to the district police chief, Tarn Taran, in this regard have fallen on deaf ears.

Earlier, Valtoha had told the Chief Minister that the health services in border area were affected.

The health minister had met the DGP for registration of a case against the private nursing home. However, no case was registered because the doctor, running the nursing home, was said to be a confidant of the Akali MLA.

Valtoha had admitted that he had spoken to the Chief Minister for directing the police not to register any case against the nursing home since the doctor was “innocent.” 


Our wishes will have to be respected, BJP tells SAD
Ajay Banerjee
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, October 20
The BJP today made it clear to its alliance partner in Punjab, the SAD, that its wishes will have to be respected on all issues.

It also made it clear that there was no climbing down from its stance on opposing the recently introduced power tariff hike.

The party’s Punjab in charge Balbir Punj held a three-hour one-to-one meeting with Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal here tonight. The entire gamut of BJP-SAD relations were discussed, said Punj while admitting that the meeting remained inconclusive and another round of “discussion” will be have to be held in the near future.

Punj was deputed by L.K. Advani and BJP chief Rajnath Singh to speak on their behalf to sort out the irritants that had cropped up between the two alliance partners. The Chief Minister reportedly reminded the BJP that the Punjab State Electricity Board was running in losses.

He also reminded Punj that giving free power to the farm sector was a pre-poll promise made by the SAD and also the BJP.

The Punjab unit of the BJP has already clarified that it was not opposed to free power in the rural sector. It only wanted that the urban people should not be asked to foot more for their power bills. The BJP has already made it clear that subsidy should be paid to the PSEB to tide over this hike. This amounts to Rs 290 crore, while the subsidy to the farm sector was about Rs 2,000 crore, the BJP has pointed out.

Punj said “ all issues were discussed”. When asked if the matter of Sukhbir Badal becoming CM was discussed, he said, “I will not be specific and make it public but all issues were discussed.”

Sources within the party said the BJP had made it known that the post of CM was not hereditary in nature that it should be passed on to Sukhbir Badal.

Let the SAD decide its candidate if they want to change the present CM and then the BJP will let its stand known.

Sources said on the issue of Sukhbir becoming CM, Punj was reticent in even briefing the party’s Punjab leaders - Balramji Dass Tandon, Navjot Sidhu, Manoranjan Kalia and Rajinder Bhandari. All these leaders had waited at the residence of Tandon for the Punajb-Badal meeting.

On the issue of CM, he may be briefing Advani and Rajnath, as the Punjab leadership will not have much say in this matter.

Among the other issues to be discussed were appointing chairman of various boards and corporations.

The BJP also wanted that major policy decisions be taken after due consultation between the two parties. In the past, the BJP had taken umbrage that the power tariff was hiked and the transport policy was announced.


Laws alone cannot stop female foeticide: CJ 
Tribune News Service

Amritsar, October 20
Chief Justice of Punjab and Haryana High Court Vijender Jain here today called for change in the mindset to curb female foeticide in Punjab.

He said laws alone could not check foeticide and the problem could be rooted out if people gave up age-old belief that only a male child could bring them joy.

Mr Justice Jain said so far there had been only one conviction for foeticide in Haryana and the number was merely four in Punjab.

The Chief Justice was in the city today to attend a seminar on “Eradication of Female Foeticide and Drug de-Addiction” at S.R. Government College for Women here organised by the Punjab Legal Services Authority, in collaboration with the district administration and the Bar Association. He also inaugurated a special Lok Adalat in the Judicial Courts complex.

Later, at a press conference, Mr Justice Jain said there was definitely need for the induction of more judges for speedy disposal of cases.

Advocate-general, Punjab, H.S.Mattewal announced grant of Rs 20 lakh on behalf of the Chief Minister to the Amritsar Bar Association.

Minister for health and family welfare Laxmi Kanta Chawla was also present. Justice Mehtab Singh Gill, executive chairman, Legal Services Authority, Chandigarh, was the guest of honour. B.S. Sialka, president, Amritsar Bar Association also expressed views.


Dengue in Ropar, but MC doesn’t even have fogging machine
Megha Mann

Ropar, October 20
While dengue has come knocking in the town with two cases reported so far, the municipal council is ill-equipped to take measures for ensuring cleanliness. Deputy general manager of the BSNL Ropar circle Anil Kumar Gupta was rushed to the PGI following dengue symptoms.

District health officer Ashok Sharma said Anil had been to Rajasthan for a few days. “He might have contracted dengue there. He visited a private practitioner here who referred him to the PGI,” he said. Meanwhile, the health department conducted a health survey in the area. Dr Sharma claims to have written to the deputy commissioner for ordering the staff concerned to carry out fogging in the area. Interestingly, the municipal council does not own a fogging machine. It has to hire one from Nangal, when needed. MC president Ashok Wahi said he had received orders for carrying out fogging in the area, but in absence of equipment the same could not be done. “A fogging machine costs around Rs 5 or Rs 7 lakh and the council did not have enough funds to buy one. But, now we have placed an order for it and are expecting the machine by Monday,” he said.


Woman threatens self-immolation
Rajay Deep
Tribune News Service

Joga (Mansa), October 20
The alleged rape of a 39-year-old woman a fortnight back in this village in Mansa district has now taken a serious turn with the victim threatening to immolate herself. Superintendent of Police (D), Mansa, has been marked the inquiry.

The victim today threatened to take the step as none of the two accused, Rajinder and Harinder, also of the same village, had been arrested. She alleged that despite lodging the FIR and the medical report, the police had not arrested anyone.

The incident allegedly took place on October 6. The victim lodged the complaint against Rajinder and Harinder at the Joga police station on the same day. After recording her statement she was sent to the Mansa civil hospital for medical examination.

According to the investigation officer, Saroop Singh, “The statement of the victim has already been recorded by the illaqa magistrate. The medical examination report has confirmed rape. But I cannot find any one who could substantiate the charge.”

The victim said, “I have met all police officials, even the Chief Minister in Chandigarh. I am poor, so no one seems to be ready to help me. Harinder, one of the accused, teased me even today. Both accused are moving freely in the village. Their families are influential. They tried to shut my mouth by offering money. Having failed in their attempt, they have now started threatening me of dire consequences”, she alleged.

Meanwhile, some villagers made allegations against her character in a meeting with Superintendent of Police (D) Sukhpal Singh at the village today. Boota Singh, a neighbour of the victim said, “She has lied to the police. All of us know about her activities.”


Bringing kathak back to spirituality
Anuradha Shukla
Tribune News Service

Kapurthala, October 20
Sufi kathak is the passion that has made Manjari Chaturvedi not only break many rules of kathak, but bring it back to its spiritual simplicity. Here for the 6th Baba Jassa Singh Kapurthala Heritage Festival, Manjari says her 13 years revelling in the masti and madness of Sufi mysticism has given birth to a whole new dance form of Sufi kathak. She danced to Rajasthani musicians singing Punjabi Sufi renditions at the festival.

“I dance to Sufi poetry and songs in the grammar of kathak,” says the dancer from the Lucknow gharana. Her experimentation with dance forms has raised many an eyebrow, but her passion to dance to the glory of the Almighty, expressed through Sufi music, never let her down. Today, she stands as the only artiste of this new art form in its own right.

“I began with kathak on qawwali, but then imbibed all kinds of rich Sufi poetry into my dance.” Criticism failed to deter her because of her zeal to discover mysticism through her dance. “Kathak, which originated from temples, was performed on bhajans. It used to be a very folk form of music, but became dance of the courts because the aim was to represent the beauty of a woman. But, my aim is once again to let audience experience the devotion and surrender to God,” she says.

“For this I do not wear what a courtesan or a ‘tawaif’ used to wear to please the nawab and do not go for showy colourful costumes to give visual delight to the audiences,” says the dancer who wears black or white with swirling dervaish lehanga. “My kathak is not restricted to particular movements perfected over the centuries because the dance form in its originality is prayer to the Almighty and a hand which is lifted in His prayer cannot be wrong,” she believes.

Daughter of a scientist father and graduate in science, Manjari says: “Scientific temper means to question and question is what I did.” One who stays away from limelight of the tinsel town says she does not want to be reduced to a Sufi kathak item number as one does not know what can happen at the editing table. She did dance to poetry of Gulzar in music video ‘Tere Ishq Mein’ on music by Vishal Bharadwaj, but on her own terms.

“My need is to discover the dance through Sufi poetry and I do not need to delve into the politics of the art circuits because the one who is making me experience the beauty of mysticism is the one who will lead me through all,” she says.


Punjabi films go big budget
Pradeep Sharma

Chandigarh, October 20
Punjabi films have gone big budget. For the first time in the history of the Punjabi cinema, Bollywood big stars like Om Puri, Gulshan Grover, Bhumika Chawla, Asrani and Farida Jalal have come together on one platform with singer-actor Gurdas Maan for “Yaariyan” releasing on November 23.

“The entertaining social comedy is an attempt to take the Punjab cinema to the next level and having top Bollywood star cast for it is a conscious decision,” writer-director Deepak Grewal said here today.

While for thespian Om Puri it is virtually a “homecoming”, it is first movie for the Bollywood’s favourite “badman” Gulshan Grover. In fact, Grover, whose parents hail from the undivided Punjab, was waiting for the right “break” in the Punjabi cinema and it was a “dream come true” for him to work with Gurdas Maan and Om Puri.

Interestingly, for a change, Grover has been cast as Gurdas Maan’s buddy and the not-so-successful lawyer, who ends at the wrong side of the law. Bhumika is also making her debut in the Punjabi film industry.

Revolving around Jagpal Bir Singh (Om Puri), who is the protagonist, and set in Canada, “Yaariyan” has underlying theme that there is no shortcuts to success. “In order to fulfil your dreams and desires, there is no alternative to honesty and hard work,” producer Pinki Basrao added.

Gurdas Maan said a lot of passion had gone into the making of the film and its USP was underlying social message weaved into comedy. Om Puri echoed his sentiments, saying that besides entertainment, the films must have a message for society. The film would go a long way in reviving the golden era of the Punjabi films, said the acclaimed actor, who has blockbusters “Laung da Lashkara” and “Chan Pardesi” 
to his credit.

Music director Jaidev Kumar said the music by four music directors had captured the varying moods of the film. Leading Bollywood singers, including Sonu Nigam, Alka Yagnik, Sadhna Sargam and Gurdas Maan, have rendered their voices 
to the songs.


SGPC team finds container with Birs
Tribune News Service

Amritsar, October 20
A two-member team of the SGPC, sent to Mumbai by committee president Avtar Singh to conduct an on-the-spot inquiry into the Bir consignment, today found a container with Birs at the Mumbai port.

The SGPC chief said 100 Birs were stacked in the container, which had been booked for shipment to Canada on August 17.

The SGPC team would remain with the container wherever it is sent, he said, adding that the persons found responsible for the denigration of Guru Granth Sahib through this act would not be spared.

Meanwhile, president of the DSGMC Parmjit Singh Sarna said he had told the person concerned to bring back the container to New Delhi.


Car hits train; sugar mill GM among 3 dead
Tribune News Service

Sangrur, October 20
Three persons were killed on the spot at 7.30 pm today when their car hit a train on an unmanned Railway crossing near Gurdaspura village 4 km from here. The train was on its way to Jakhal from Dhuri while the occupants of the car were returning to Phagwara after visiting a sugar mill in Haryana.

Local DSP Pritpal Singh Thind said one of the three killed persons had been identified as J. K. Goyal, general manager of sugar mill, Phagwara while the remaining two deceased had been identified as Rajesh Kumar, an employee in the sugar mill, and Bhupinder Singh, driver of the car, resident of Daduwal village, near Nakodar.


BBMB gives cash prizes
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, October 20
U.C. Misra, chairman of the BBMB, today gave away cash prizes to officers and employees for doing maximum use of Hindi in official work during 2006-07 along with prizes for Hindi competitions organised during the “Hindi pakhwara” at the board secretariat function here.

He regretted that they had to organise such competitions even after six decades of independence. 

Anil Arora, member, irrigation, and other officers were present on the occasion. Those finishing first, second and third were awarded prizes of Rs 1500, Rs 1250 and Rs 1000, respectively, out of which useful Hindi books of half the prize money were distributed to the winners.


HC rejects plea of Beant killer’s ‘wife’ 
Saurabh Malik
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, October 20
Nearly 18 months after Amanpreet Kaur of Kapurthala district was booked for sedition and other offences following allegations of marriage with alleged co-conspirator in Beant Singh assassination case Paramjit Singh Behora, the Punjab and Haryana High Court has turned down her plea for permission to attend final year nursing course classes.

In her petition against the state of Punjab, the registrar of Punjab Nurses Registration and Hoshiarpur-based Guru Ram Dass Institution of Nursing Education, Amanpreet Kaur had contended that she was implicated in the FIR registered on April 3, 2006, under Sections 212, 216, 124-A and 120-B of the IPC while she was in the final year nursing course.

Arguing on her behalf, counsel for the petitioner, Navkiran Singh, had contended that as Amandeep Kaur remained in custody for three months she could not attend classes and fell short of lectures. As such, she should be permitted to attend the course.

In reply to her allegations, it was stated that the petitioner “was not fit to be accommodated with innocent girls as she was an accomplice of a terrorist”. It was added that the petitioner got married to Behora during the 15-day vacation after the second year examinations.

She never disclosed her links with hardcore terrorist and her application for leave contained a false ground of urgent work at home.

After hearing the rival contentions, a division Bench comprising Justice Adarsh Kumar Goel and Justice Ajai Lamba ruled: “It remains undisputed that the course to which the petitioner was admitted to has ended in September 2006. There is no rule or instructions which entitle the petitioner to the right to continue studies with the institute. In these circumstances, we do not find any ground to give directions sought in the petition.”

Dismissing the petition, the judges in their detailed order further ruled: “Though we do not express any opinion about the allegations in the reply or in the criminal case, the apprehension expressed by the college cannot be held to be totally unfounded.” 


BKU condemns Centre for ban
Tribune News Service

Moga, October 20
The Bhartiya Kisan Union (BKU) flayed the Congress-led UPA government at the Centre for banning the export of non-basmati rice in its meeting held here today.

Bhupinder Singh Maheshri, leader of the BKU, said the policy of the Central government was a blow to the sagging morale of the farming community.

He said the BKU would be forced to initiate agitation if the government did not shift its policy. He blamed the government for pursuing anti-farmer policies.


Two scribes held on extortion charges
Our Correspondent

Nabha, October 20
The city police arrested two scribes of different news channels on the charges of extortion and blackmailing here today.

Narinder Johar, reporter of the Standard World, and Ravinder Khippal, cameraman of Time TV, were arrested under Sections 384, 385, 420, 506 and 120-B, IPC.

The police is also conducting raids to nab their accomplice Jarnail Singh, reporter of Time TV, and Harbhajan Singh Bindra, cameraman of the Standard World.

The case has been registered on a complaint of Puneet Aggarwal and Anil Sharma.

SHO Gurinder Bal told mediapersons that the accused had extorted Rs 1.25 lakh and demanded Rs 1 lakh more, promising them (Puneet and Anil) not to telecast their act of playing cards captured on their cameras near the PWD rest house. 


Labourer’s Death
Two power officials booked for negligence
Tribune News Service

Kharar, October 20
The Kharar police has booked a junior engineer (JE), a sub-divisional officer (SDO) and a private contractor for causing the death of a migrant labour due to negligence while working on a sewer project.

Acting on the complaint of one of the victims of the accident, Vinod Kumar, a native of Purnia, Bihar, police booked the three accused this morning. Those booked include JE Mohan Singh from Kharar municipal council, SDO, sewerage board, Jaswant Singh and private contractor Shiv Kumar under Section 304 A of the IPC.

Vinod Kumar told police that all labourers were working on the project when suddenly the earth caved in and he, along with Mahesh Ram and Raju, got buried alive. While Vinod and Raju were rescued, Mahesh died on his way to the hospital.

He also said the labourers were working under the aforesaid JE, SDO and contractor, but none of them was present at the time of the mishap.

The sewer was a part of the project undertaken in the areas around Gurudwara Saheb on Kharar-Landran road. The entire sewer line on the Randhawa road had been laid and this was the last phase of the project.

Meanwhile, MLA Balbir Singh Sidhu visited civil hospital, Kharar, to meet the injured. No arrest has been made so far. 


4 booked for beating up nephew

Kharar, October 20
A family dispute turned violent when four members of a family, including three women, allegedly beat up their nephew yesterday.

The victim, Amandeep, sustained injuries on his arms. His brother Sukhdeep Singh, who allegedly intervened to save him, was also injured in the clash.

According to information, Sukhdeep Singh, a resident of Daun village, in his complaint, alleged that four people beat up his brother last evening at his home. The attackers include his uncle Naib Singh and aunts Charnajit Kaur, Harpreet Kaur and Jagir Kaur, who have been booked.

Both factions live in a joint family and had a domestic dispute. Both Sukhdeep and Amandeep are presently in the civil hospital. — TNS


CM for job-oriented education
Our Correspondent

Hoshiarpur, October 20
To overcome the problem of unemployment, the Punjab government will set up training centres to impart technical and professional education to the youth. This was stated by Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal while inaugurating the Gursewa Institute of Nursing at Garhshankar, about 40 km from here, at Panam village today.

The Chief Minister said there was a great demand for skilled and semi-skilled workers in multi-national companies setting up units in Punjab. To meet this demand, the government had formulated a programme to impart training to the jobless youth in various technical and professional trades.

Arrangements were being made to provide training to the youth in security sector on an experimental basis at Jahan Khelan, 8 km from Hoshiarpur. Later, more training centres would be opened in other parts of the state.

Badal emphasised on imparting job-oriented education to help the youth earn their livelihood in a respectful way.

Despite a debt of Rs 25,000 crore, which was left by the previous Congress regime, the SAD-BJP government had made a comprehensive plan for providing quality education to the youth. The government had already on the job of opening Adarsh Schools where brilliant students from weaker sections would get education free of cost.

Effective steps were being taken to strengthen road network in the state, said Badal.

Later, talking to mediapersons, the Chief Minister said the government would provide requisite funds to make payments to the beneficiaries of the Shagun scheme. Cases of remaining beneficiaries would be reconsidered.

Replying to a question, Badal said no agricultural land would be acquired by the government for setting up industry.

The Chief Minister said there was no misunderstanding between the SAD and the BJP.


PTU admission process to go online
Tribune News Service

Kharar, October 20
The Punjab Technical University (PTU) has decided to introduce the concept of e-governance.

The varsity will soon switch over from the current manual process to on-line system for its centralised admissions. This is being done to enable the students from far-flung areas to participate in the counseling process and get admissions as per their choice.

Dean, examinations, Dr N.P. Singh, said this while addressing the students on the occasion of the third inter-college techno hunt held at Chandigarh Engineering College (CEC), Landran.

Dr Singh said making admission process online would not only save the students’ time but also make it economically viable for both, the university and the students. The process to make admissions for year 2008-09 online has already been initiated by the university.

He also added that now there would be no need for the students to visit the university campus to get their work done as the varsity has proposed to introduce an online student welfare project, which would make its working more transparent and convenient.

Techno Hunt-2007 was organised by Cybex, a club of cyberspace explorers of the department of computer applications at CEC, Landran. As many as 15 colleges of this region participated in daylong event.

Satnam Singh Sandhu, chairman, Rashpal Singh Dhaliwal, president, CGC, and Dr G.D. Bansal, director-principal, were also present on the occasion.


Brick industry to pay lump sum VAT 
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, October 20
The Punjab Government today decided to allow brick industry in the state to pay lump sum VAT on Haryana pattern. 

A decision to this effect was taken at a high-level meeting held under the chairmanship of Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal with a 20-member delegation of the Punjab brick-kiln owners association led by its president Kuldip Singh Makkar. 

The brick industry in Punjab was paying lump sum sales tax for many years. 


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