R E G I O N A L   B R I E F S


: Ramesh Bishnoi, a leading transporter, progressive farmer and secretary of the Homoeopathic Medical College, died of brain hemorrhage here on Sunday. Hundreds attended the cremation at his native village Seetogunno here. 

Accident: One Virender Kumar, a resident of Gidderanwali village, was seriously injured as his motorcycle was hit by a truck while on way to Jandwala Hanwanta village on the Abohar–Sriganganagar road on Monday. His pillion-riding wife Kavita had a narrow escape. Virender had been admitted to the civil hospital here. The truck fled from the scene after the mishap, sources said. 

Fake currency
: The local police arrested two persons, Sikander Singh and Bakhsheesh Singh of Mehraj, for possessing fake currency worth Rs 30,200. Giving the information, CIA in-charge Sanjeev Goyal said that the police had set up a barrier near Tapa where during checking, two persons were arrested with fake currency. A case under various sections of the IPC has been registered against them. Both were produced in a local court on Monday. The court has sent them to two days of police remand. 

Arrested: During a drive against anti-social elements to check the smuggling of narcotics, the local police arrested a person for possessing 2 kg of opium here on Friday. SSP Parmjeet Singh Garewal informed that a police team guided by Rajesh Kumar, SHO, Dhanaula, set up a barrier near Kot Duna village. A motor-cycle rider, Raja Singh of Gurtahri, Bhikhi in Mansa district, was asked to stop for checking. On search, two kilograms of opium was recovered from his possession. He was arrested immediately. A case under the NDPS Act has been registered. Meanwhile, in three separate cases during the past few days, the local police claimed to have arrested three proclaimed offenders, Gurjant Singh, Baldev Singh and Jagdish Singh. 

Awareness camp
: The Youth Akali Dal, under the leadership of Gurwinder Singh Bhatti, organised a youth awareness camp on Monday. Hundreds of youths from the area participated in the camp. Prof R.S. Uppal, prof Gurpal Singh from Baba Banda Singh Bahadur Engineering College and other professionals answered the participants’ queries and guided them about various job avenues. 

Celebrated: Hundreds of party workers recently celebrated the elevation of Sukhbir Singh Badal as the party president. The SAD (B) workers held a meeting and distributed sweets. They congratulated Sukhbir Badal as well as Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal. Jagdeep Singh Cheema, general secretary of the Youth Akali Dal, congratulated the Badal family. 

Stir postponed
: The Punjab and Chandigarh Teachers Union has postponed its plan of courting arrest by executive committee members and mass casual leave on February 5, in view of the assurances given by the finance minister of Punjab that their problems would be resolved within a week. 

Regular status: The Punjab Field and Workshop Workers Union Branch, Sangat branch, Bathinda, has demanded regularisation of the job of workers on daily wages, who have been rendering services for nearly two decades. Though some workers got permanent jobs in 2001 during the previous Akali regime, but still, a large number of employees have been left out. In a press statement, the union rued that some employes were about to retire, but were still getting only Rs 2,400 and Rs 4,645 per month without any allowances. 

Ban cellphones: The Bathinda Vikas Manch has demanded strict implementation of the ban on the use of mobile phones in educational institutions and government departments. It would create an atmosphere of learning and improve the standards of education, it said. The Manch praised the Himachal Pradesh government for successfully implementing the ban in schools and colleges. In a press statement, it claimed that the radio waves could prove harmful for children and pregnant women. 

Scholarships for Dalits: The Bathinda Vikas Manch has complained that the scholarships for SC students have not been given for the year 2003, 2004 and 2005. In a press statement, the Manch said that scholarships for students from lower sections of society must be encouraged. But the scholarships were given at the end of the year, which defeated its very purpose, it said. 

Ravidas Jayanti: The Shri Guru Ravidas Bhalai Sangathan held a meeting under the presidentship of Sohan Lal Khicchi to draw out plan for the celebrations of Ravidas Jayanti. The members of organisation are also leaving for Bararas, birthplace of Guru Ravidas on February 17 and would come back by February 23. At the meeting, members were assigned different responsibilities. 

Yoga session: As a sequel to arranging yoga sessions in schools, the Ek Noor Welfare Society and Patanjali Yog Peeth today held a yoga training camp at the Khalsa Senior Secondary School in Bathinda. Harpal Singh, district employment officer, inaugurated the camp and said that in this fast-paced life, yoga could prove useful for maintaining fitness. 

Personality development: The personality development week organised by the DAV College, Bathinda, for the overall personality of its final-year students concluded with a discourse by D.S. Grewal, Director- Principal of Bhai Maha Singh College of  Engineering, Muktsar.  Grewal stressed upon the need for positive thinking  to have a radiant personality.  

Roadways staffers’ rally tomorrow: Punjab Roadways Employees Action Committee will hold a state-level rally at the local bus stand on February 6 to protest against the non-implementation of the promises made by transport minister Mohan Lal at a meeting of its representatives. In a press note issued here on Monday, committee chairman Amrik Singh Gill stated the transport minister had accepted some long-pending demands of the employees at the January 15 meeting.

Privatisation protest: The Industrial Training Employees Union plans to organise dharnas at tehsil kendras tomorrow in protest against move to privatise the ITIs in Punjab. The union will also submit a demand charter to the administration. Union president Sunil Dutt Sharma said in a press statement here that Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal had assured them that no ITI would be privatised. 

Man booked for raping minor: The police has booked a person for raping a minor girl after abducting her. An FIR under sections 366 and 376 of the IPC has been registered against accused Amrik who has absconded, according to police station division No 8 additional SHO Om Parkash. 

Mobile hospital gets operational
: The Bhai Kanhaiya Charitable Society today launched a mobile hospital-cum-ambulance van. Punjab agriculture minister Sucha Singh Langah inaugurated the mobile hospital in a function held here today. Set up at a cost of Rs 15 lakh, the mobile hospital will be used for holding free medical check-up camps in remote areas of the district. Langah said a similar mobile hospital would be started in his constituency. 

NDPS undertrial dead
: An undertrial under the NDPS Act died at PGI, Chandigarh, after allegedly suffering a heart attack in the Central Jail here on Friday afternoon. Baldev Singh, aged about 45, was shifted to PGI from the Civil Hospital here that evening only. 

NRI alumni to develop Sikh College
: An NRI alumni of Sikh National College, Banga, has decided to convert the college into a model educational institution. The decision was taken at a meeting held here. Under the project, the infrastructure of the college would be developed to promote academic, sports and cultural activities in the institution enabling the rural youth to face the global challenges. Giving details, Tejinder Singh Dosanjh said for the construction of the infrastructure the organisation had contributed Rs 1.25 crore. 

Death of baratis:Bhattal  visits bereaved families
: To express sympathy and grief with families of seven members of a marriage party from Moonak, who were killed in a road accident near Sirsa on Sunday, residents of the village kept shutters of their business establishments down. Even rehriwalas and owners of tea and pan  stalls kept their business closed. Meanwhile, MLA from Lehragaga Rajinder Kaur Bhattal visited the houses of families  of the deceased baratis and expressed sympathy with them.



Health survey: Health officials, during a random survey of registered medical practitioners (RMPs) and other medical practitioners in villages, not only found them using unauthorised allopathic medicines, but also caught one of them with instruments used for medical termination of pregnancy (MTP), here recently. A team of doctors carried out the survey in Bhainsa Tibba village and warned the erring doctors against such practices. 

Released: Following the release of the cultural calendar of 2008 which has given a special impetus to the ongoing literary activities in the state, the Haryana Sahitya Akademy has geared up to accomplish more by reaching out to the deep rural areas of Haryana. Commissioner for higher education Shivraman Gaud stated this at Panchkula recently. The volume of Akdemy's official magazine Harigandha had been doubled while a new magazine 'Mhara Haryana' had been launched. 



Employment scheme
: The Rozgar Guarantee Yojna will be introduced in the district from April 1. Under the scheme, the poor will be given 100 days of guaranteed employment. This was stated by S.S. Surjewala, president of the All-India Kisan Khet Mazdoor Congress and local MLA. 

Havildar looted: Two persons reportedly looted Rs 1,200 and a mobile phone from a BSF havildar, Harphool Singh, after hitting him in the head at a deserted spot some distance away from the railway station here on Sunday. Harphool Singh, currently posted at Ferozepur cantonment, was going towards Jhajjar Chowk to catch a vehicle for Pahadi village near Pataudi. 

Body found: The police recovered the body of an unidentified person from a room near Gokalgarh village, 3 km from here, on Sunday. It also seized a phial containing some tablets of celphos. It is suspected that the man may have committed suicide by consuming the tablets. 



Meeting: A meeting of the scientific advisory committee of the Himachal Pradesh Agriculture University Krishi Vigyan Kendra, Dhaulan Kuan, will be held on February 6 at the Kendra. It will be presided over by director (extension) K.K. Katoch. Scientist in charge of the kendra A.R. Khan said the work on agriculture extension undertaken during 2006-2007 would be reviewed in the meeting and an action plan for 2008 would be finalized. All heads of district, line department and zonal coordinator, ICAR, would attend the meeting, he added. 

Registration sought
: The state unit of the Indian Trade Union Congress has urged Chief Minister Prem Kumar Dhumal to direct the state Industry Department to ensure registration of labourers working in the industries being set up in the state in private sector and to issue identity cards to them. Rajnesh Sharma, general secretary INTUC and delegate of national INTUC, in a statement issued here on Sunday underlined the need to keep a strict vigil of the Industry Department on the industries which were not even adhering to the MoU condition of according 70 per cent employment to the people of the hill state. 

Training programme
: A five-day national-level special training programme on “Human empowerment and rural uplift of India” commenced here on Monday. Thirty participants representing north-eastern states are participating in the programme. The programme is being organised by the regional directorate of the Central Board for Worker Education for activists of trade unions. The deputy director, employment, appreciated efforts of the board in conducting such programmes. State president of the Bharatiya Mazdoor Sangh S.K. Thakur urged the participants to adopt the “nation first” approach while waging struggle for their rights. The participants will be educated on various issues like human empowerment, right to information, HIV and AIDS, leadership qualities, changing economic scenario, special provisions for the North-East, need to eradicate social evils and social security. 

Burglary cases solved
: With the arrest of four persons, the police has claimed to have solved at least five cases of burglary. The incidents had taken place during December-January. Superintendent of police S.P.S. Verma said Vinod Dheer (32) and Gurcharan (34) were arrested making use of the information provided by Mintoo and Ashish Kumar, who were arrested on January 29. They all are local residents. 



Justice Kirmani bereaved: Nahida Kirmani, wife of Justice Bashir Ahmad Kirmani of the Jammu and Kashmir High Court died here, family sources said on Monday. Nahida was working as a lecturer in a government college here. She breathed her last at her Nishat residence. Meanwhile, many social and political organisations and leaders have expressed grief over her demise. The Peoples Democratic Party (PDP) has also condoled the sad demise of Nahida. 

Raise retirement age: The labour cell of the People's Democratic Party (PDP) on Monday asked the state government to enhance the retirement age of civil servants in the state to 60 years from the existing 58 years. President, state labour cell of the PDP, Ishtiyaq Qadri, called for enhancing the retirement age by two years to remove the discrimination between state and central services' employees. Qadri, who met Deputy Chief Minister Muzaffar Hussain Baig in this regard, appealed to other Cabinet ministers to support the demand. 


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