Pending projects: NC chief pins blame on officials
‘Officials adopting delaying tactics to please BJP minister-cum-local MLA’
Our Correspondent

Phagwara, November 27
Charging serious allegations against some of the Phagwara nagar council officials, NC president Malkiat Singh Ragbotra alleged that due to their dirty politics and biased attitude, the council could not be able to complete its pending projects.

Ragbotra was speaking at a general body meeting of the Congress-led council, which was attended by 24 out of total 27 councillors, here today. Absent councillors were Hardip Anand, Inderjit Sonker and Surinder Singh Chhinda.

“Though the council purchased 75 hand-ridden reherris for door-to-door garbage collection by spending Rs 6.5 lakh in first week of November but due to the officials’ neglectful attitude, who are waiting for the expiry of the term of the council (due on December 4), residents of several parts of the town were deprived off the facility,” he alleged.

According to him, the officials were adopting delaying tactics in order to please BJP minister-cum-local MLA. He said, because of this reason, ‘Traffic Training Park’ could not be set up and Ambedker Library building in local Palahai Gate was still waiting for its completion.

Ragbotra further alleged three tubewells have not been repaired, the roads of main bazaar Bansanwala also lie in bad shape.

He said he had repeatedly instructed the officials to hear the grievances of the people but the officials wanted to defame the Congress-led council due to their appeasement policies.

He disclosed the council has a balance of more than Rs 70 lakh and officials have told him that local bodies secretary has banned to spend the money.

Congress councillors Sanjeev Bugga and Pawan Sharma Pappi alleged the council could not purchase even 30 chairs for the meeting hall of the council due to allegedly corrupt practices of the officials.

In the presence of executive officer Paramjit Singh and XEN Sukhdev Singh, both councillors alleged these officials wanted to purchase the chairs at Rs 6,500 per chair which were available at Rs 2,800 in the open market.

When Congress councillors smelt the issue, the officials got quotations of Rs 1,450 per chair from their own man to purchase substandard chairs, without approval of any tender, they further alleged. The allegations were denied by the officials.

Ragbotra alleged that the work of computerisation has also suffered delay. “If delaying tactics were not being adopted, NC Phagwara could have become the first nagar council of the state to introduce computerised system.”

BJP councillors Rakesh Duggal and Arun Khosla asked the Congress councillors why they did not raise their voice against officials earlier.

No control over bureaucracy’

Former minister Joginder Singh Maan has alleged the SAD-BJP government could not command bureaucracy, which was playing a partial role, as proved in Phagwara nagar council episode.

It has planned several projects and some of them were even ready to introduce, but the NC officials were creating hindrances and adopting delay tactics. “Satnampura railway over bridge, new bus stand and Mehtan by pass fly over were delayed due to careless monitoring of the projects.”

Maan warned the officials to mend their behaviour otherwise the Congress party would be forced to launch an agitation. Commenting upon ongoing unannounced long power cuts, Maan alleged during the Congress regime in the state, Phagwara town was put in A-category, but after the formation of the SAD-BJP government, it was put in C-category. Local MLA could not do much to safeguard the interests of the people, he added. 



Major Fillip
Passport office changes address, boosts area devp
Deepkamal Kaur
Tribune News Service

Jalandhar, November 27
Ever since the regional passport office has been shifted to Ambika Towers on Police Lines Road, the sleepy market is abuzz with activity.

Within a short span of time, scores of travel agents, immigration consultants and airline ticket dealers have set up their offices in the market complexes right across the new passport office. While all such shops were once seen near the old passport office at Skylark Chowk, it seems that they have changed their address to remain close to their clientele.

Even the land prices and shop rents in the area have shot up in the past few months. Earlier there were hardly any takers for the shops in the interiors of the road and now only few shops were available that too with rent tripled and touching Rs 21,000 per month.

Scores of agents too have set up their temporary vends around the office and remain busy trapping new clients entering the office every now and then. Vendors selling eatables too have arrived here and so have the tea stalls.

In fact, Sagar Ratna, a vegetarian restaurant in the same complex, too has started getting more customers. Keeping sales in mind, the outlet has opened a new entrance on the passport office side and has even set up its counters outside in the open.

The scene inside the office is a bit different too. Though long queues of applicants at the windows persist, but the office does not seem to be congested any more. It is rather quite spacious and even cleaner with boards carrying warning (in Punjabi) “Even animals don’t like dirt. Anyone found littering or spitting will be fined Rs 50” hanging here and there.

However, the crowd is the same, somewhat rustic, mostly including men squatting in queues, tired waiting for their turn. There are some newly wed girls too showing off their bridal bangles. Also there are women carrying infants for whom they need to get passports.

The introduction of scheme of online submission of application forms too does not seem to have reduced the rush at the office.

Regional passport officer Amarjeet Singh agrees. “Most of the applicants are hailing from rural background and do not have access to computers and internet. And above all there are no cyber cafes in villages. So they prefer to come directly to the office rather than going to a cyber café”, he cites the reason adding that he had circulated the scheme of online submission through various media.



Shameful Act
Man rapes foster daughter
Our Correspondent

Phagwara, November 27
Phagwara Police have arrested a villager Karam Chand and his accomplice on charges of the rape of Karam Chand’s minor foster daughter at Sahni village in Phagwara today.

DSP Harkamalpreet Singh Khakh told this correspondent here this evening that one Sagli Ram and his wife Parkasho, who were issueless, adopted an infant baby from the orphanage. But both husband and wife died few years after her adoption. The villagers then consulted and handed over the six year old girl to another villager Karam Chand and his wife Neelam.

Life was going on normally but when the girl grew up to ten years old, Karam Chand, her second foster father started raping his own adopted daughter Manjit. She then narrated her story to her foster mother, but even she threatened her to keep mum. The series of rapes continued for some years as Karam Chand threatened to kill her if she tried to tell the truth to anybody.

The situation took a more ugly turn when Karam Chand forced Manjit to have sexual relations with a migrant labourer Dinesh Kumar and was beaten up by Karam Chand if she did otherwise.

DSP Khakh said the victim tried to tell the truth to her foster mother Neelam, who expressed her helplessness and even asked her to remain silent and do whatever her father wanted.

Khakh said the medical examination of Manjit Kaur has confirmed repeated rapes and the police have nabbed both Karam Chand and his accomplice Dinesh.

Meanwhile, the DSP said the victim has now been handed over to Faquir Chand of Ajaram village in district Hoshiarpur, who was a younger brother of deceased Sagli Ram, the first foster father of the victim. 



Eve-teasers run for cover
Dharmendra Joshi
Tribune News Service

Jalandhar, November 27
Set up by SSP Arpit Shukla about 10 days back, the mobile anti eve-teasing and traffic violation cell has proved to be deterrent against eve-teasers and 
traffic violators, especially around educational institutions.

The special cell headed by traffic inspector Sita Rani has been working under the supervision of SP (HQ) Satinder Singh since November 16.

Talking to The Tribune, Sita Rani said at least 20 eve-teasers have been nabbed during the special nakas put up outside the educational institutions. Besides, over 100 traffic violators, especially youths roaming around girls’ colleges, were challaned during last ten days. While adolescent eve-teasers were discharged after issuing strict warning, the traffic violators had to pay for violations in the court, she added.

The traffic inspector said, “The problem was found outside almost every girl’s college, but it was more at SD College. With the arrest of several eve-teasers and challans of traffic violators, there has been considerable decline in such cases, she claimed.

Joyous over the impact, the special cell held a meeting at Police Lines on Tuesday with the representatives of several educational institutions.

SP (HQ) Satinder Singh advised the representatives of colleges and schools to install close circuit television (CCTVs) outside their institutions to minimise 
such incidents.

Meanwhile, the representatives of educational institutions present in the meeting included those from HMV College, KMV College, Doaba College, DAV College, SD College, Lyallpur Khalsa College, Tagore Day Borading School, MGN School, SD School for girls, Nehru Garden School, Doaba Khalsa School and Govt Girls school, Ladowali Road. 



Young World
DAVIET lifts PTU youth fest trophy
Tribune News Service

Playful Moments
The three-day PTU youth fest came to a gala end in Jalandhar on Tuesday
The three-day PTU youth fest came to a gala end in Jalandhar on Tuesday. —Photo by S.S. Chopra

Jalandhar, November 27
The hosts, DAV Institute of Engineering and Technology, lifted the overall trophy of the PTU Inter-Zonal Youth Festival, which concluded here today.

The winners scored 155 points where as Baba Banda Singh Bahadur College of Engineering Fatehgarh Sahib came second with 42 points. Lovely Institute of Management stood third with just 34 points. Contests for Punjabi folk song, vaar singing, group song Indian, Punjabi folk dance for girls, rangoli and on-the-spot painting were held today. PTU vice-chancellor Dr S.K. Salwan gave prizes to the winners.

Result of the contests: Punjabi folk song: DAVIET (1) and Giani Zail Singh Engineering and Technology Institute Bathinda (2). Vaar singing: Ramgarhia Institute of Engineering and Technology (RIET) Phagwara (1) and Lala Lajpat Rai Institute of Engineering and Technology Moga (2).

Indian group song: DAVIET (1) and Gyan Jyoti Institute of Management and Technology Mohali (2).

Punjabi folk dance: DAVIET (1) and LIM (2). Rangoli: DAVIET (1) and LIM (2)

On-the-spot painting: DAVIET (1) and RIET Phagwara (2).

Annual function

Cambridge International School for Girls had its annual function on Saturday. Students performed Kucchipudi, Assamese, Rajasthani and western dances. The play, ‘Deaf King’, left the audience awestruck. Students of classes VII and IX staged play ‘Magical Lamp’. Bhangra was performed by the girls of classes VII and IX. The tiny tots of KG I enacted a ballet which stole away the hearts of the audience.

Kho-kho tourney

Girls from Police DAV Public School bagged third position in the national championship of kho-kho held at Chandigarh recently. Jyotbir of the school was adjudged as the best chaser. The school team also participated in Punjab Yoga Championship held at Patiala.

Rangoli contest

A rangoli competition was held at St Soldier Divine Public School. Students of classes VI, VII, IX and X classes made beautiful patterns of rangoli. H.S. Gill, principal of the school, gave away the prizes. Students of classes IX and X shared the first prize. Class VII students were declared second.

Top honours

Gurpreet Kaur and Meghna Saxena, both from Lovely Institute of Technology, stood first and second, respectively, in B. Tech electronics and communication fourth semester result declared by Punjab Technical University. Gurpreet has secured 92.8 per cent marks and Meghna obtained 91.9 per cent.

Gurpurab celebrated

Students and staff of Lyallpur Khalsa College held Guru Nanak Dev’s birth anniversary on the campus on Tuesday. Kirtan was performed by jathas from Sri Harmandir Sahib. Langar was distributed after the bhog. The Centre for Guru Granth Sahib Studies in the college will hold World AIDS Day programme on the campus on December 1.

Science exhibition

A four-day state-level science exhibition being organised by SCERT began at Sain Dass A.S. Senior Secondary School, Patel Chowk today. Students, who have won the district-level exhibition under various categories, displayed their models. The exhibition will be formally inaugurated by chief parliamentary secretary Mahinder Kaur Josh on Wednesday.

Group discussion

A group discussion ‘Talk your way’ was organised by the commerce society of HMV College. Discussions were held on various social, economic and corporate issues. Nidhi and Deepika from B.Com-III got first and second prizes, respectively.



Adampur Air Force Station gets new commander
Tribune News Service

Jalandhar, November 27
Group Captain PW Ambedkar took over as the Station Commander of Air Force Station Adampur today from Air Commodore Arup Raha.

Ambekar was commissiond into the IAF on December 11, 1981. Before taking over the command of the Air Force Station, he was chief operational officer of the base.

The man has also held various prestigious appointments, including the command flight safety inspection officer at the headquarters, South Western Air Command.

He has undertaken many professional courses through his career spanning nearly 26 years. Apart from being a fighter pilot with vast experience on the MiG, he is a fighter combat leader and is an alumnus of Defence Services Staff College. 



UK’s House of Commons denies prayer request of Hindu chaplain Zed

Phagwara, November 27
Internationally acclaimed Hindu chaplain Rajan Zed, who read the historic first Hindu prayer in US Senate in July last year, was denied the permission of reading opening prayer in the House of Commons, UK.

In a reply to Zed's request, Angus Sinclair, secretary to the speaker of House of Commons, wrote, “Since 1660, and without exception, prayers have been conducted by the church of England, a protestant denomination with the Christian faith. The church of England is an established church of the UK and any change to the prayers could only occur after much parliamentary debate which would precede consultation with the Sovereign, Queen Elizabeth the second."

"Please understand that there is no compulsion for Members of Parliament to attend prayers," Sinclair added. In another communication on the issue, Pamela Carrington, Rector's secretary, St Margaret's Church, Westminster Abbey, said, "Canon Wright (Canon Robert Wright, the Speaker's Chaplain) asked me to say that, regrettably, this is not possible - prayers in the chamber are always said by the Anglican Chaplain."

Meanwhile, Rajan Zed has also recited the historic first Hindu prayers in California State Senate, Nevada State Senate and Nevada State Assembly this year. — OC



Punjab bags second prize at IITF

Phagwara, November 27
Punjab has won the second prize in the India International Trade Fair (IITF) 
2007 held by the India Trade Promotion Organisation (ITPO) at the Pargati 
Maidan, New Delhi.

This was disclosed by media advisor to the Chief Minister Harcharan Bains, here today. Bains said the jury constituted by ITPO has made the prize declaration.

The theme of IITF-2007 was agro industry and processed food which is close to the heart of Punjab which is known as the food bowl of the country. — OC



Day after murdering wife, son, man kills self
Tribune News Service

Jalandhar, November 27
A day after killing his wife and son at Guru Ram Dass Nagar, near Vikas Puri, here, Sukhwinder Singh today committed suicide by hanging himself from a tree.

Confirming this, SHO of police station number eight Balbir Singh told The Tribune that his body had been found hanging from a tree on Tuesday in a village falling under Mahilpur police station of the neighbouring Hoshiarpur district.

The Hoshiarpur police had taken a routine action under section 174 of the CrPC in this regard, he added.

Sukhwinder had murdered his wife Parminder Kaur, son Gurbaksh Singh (9) and seriously injured his daughter Paramjeet Kaur (10) by attacking them with a sword on the suspicion that his wife had illicit relations with a youth of the same locality. He wrote on the walls of the room that he killed his wife and son as Parminder had illicit relations with Bunty.



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