Land records will be just a click away soon
Vibhor Mohan
Tribune News Service

Amritsar, February 29
With the process of digitising land records going on in full swing, the certified copies of these records would be soon available in the city at a mouse click.

The majority of work is expected to be complete by June 30 and the entire project would be finished by the year-end.

Giving details, deputy commissioner K.S. Pannu said, “Most of the data has been computerised and corrections are being made in the data which includes mutation entry, “khasra” entry and “rapat roznamcha. Now patwaris in the district would become e-patwaris as they would have technology to assist them.”

Talking to The Tribune, assistant system manager Devi Sharan Jain said, “The data have been divided into four sections according to the tehsils in the district - Amritsar 1 and 2, Ajnala and Baba Bakala. “The work is being carried out at a war footing and two batches of 30 people each are working in two shifts regularly to complete work on time. Besides, care is being taken to make sure that there are no aberrations in the land records.” The process of training patwaris has already been initiated, he added.

Pannu said the digitising would be very useful for public and would help to remove their grievances. With the computerisation, the certified copies would be available instantly and only attesting them would be required.

He said, “We are already working ahead of the schedule set by the state government. E-copies of land records would not only be helpful to farmers, landowners and others but would also help NRIs for getting information about land and land records”.

Apart from this, special “fard kendras” would be set up to provide copies of revenue records on special legally valid stationery. Sites for construction of ultra modern sub-tehsil complexes in Majitha, Attari, Lopoke, Ramdas and Tarsika have been identified and work at Majitha would begin shortly.

The complex would house fard kendra, suwidha centre, joint sub-registrar office, conference room and waiting area for the general public and would become operational by March 31.



 Illegal stock of capsules, syrups seized in raids
Sanjay Bumbroo
Tribune News Service

Amritsar, February 29
In order to curb the drug menace among the youth of the holy city, a team of the health department officials raided the premises of various chemists shops and seized a huge quantity of illegal loose capsules, syrups and injunctions.

Revealing this to the media here today, civil surgeon Lehmber Singh said that on specific information a team of drug inspectors, including Sanjeev Garg accompanied with Gurwinder Singh from Gurdaspur, Amit Duggal from Patiala and Rajesh Suri from Ludhiana, raided chemists shops in Katra Sher Singh in the walled city and seized huge quantities of capsules, tablets and syrups.

Singh said 46,000 capsules of proxivon spazmproxivon, parvenzpas, dexavon, 6,800 tablets of mycrolit, nitozepam, alprazolam and syrups fencydyl and pentajocin and injections oxitocin and pentaxocin had been illegally stocked by Garg Pharma, Deepak Pharmaceuticals and Santosh Medical Centre.

He said the accused were selling the tablets and capsules in a loose form which could be deadly for the users as it did not mention the manufacturing and expiry dates.

Civil surgeon said the team also raided Unmol Chemists at Harsha Chinna village. He said an unlicensed chemists shop was also selling the drugs.



Guns’ Sales Drop
 Getting arms licence is no longer easy
Vibhor Mohan
Tribune News Service

Amritsar, February 29
Most young and reckless Punjabis have long identified themselves with the sentiment in a popular Punjabi song, “Mitran nu shouk hathiyaran da....” The only problem, however, is that keeping a weapon for sheer fun is no longer that easy.

Gun houses in the city have witnessed a drastic decline in sales ever since the police stopped being generous in issuing arms licences. “This has affected sales in a big way in recent past.

Otherwise, youth from the area had a strong liking for weapons both for defence and for style,” says the owner of a gun house near Bhandari Bridge.

While the double-barrel is priced between Rs 10,000 and Rs 20,000, the revolvers come at a price of Rs 60,000.

“The choice of the weapon also depends on the budget of the customer. But a valid arms licence is a necessity for buying weapons,” he adds.

SSP Kunwar Vijay Pratap Singh says there has been a conscious attempt to issue arms licences only in case of genuine cases, mostly where the applicant needs to carry a weapon for self-defence.

“Another reason is that there are already too many arms licences issued in the district and people seeking licence only to buy weapons for fun are being discouraged,” he says.

Sources in the police department say about 70 per cent of the fresh applications for arms licences are being turned down these days, especially in view of the incidents of firing. There were stray incidents of firing during the recently conducted elections of the Amritsar municipal corporation.

The idea is to clamp down widespread carrying of arms and ammunition in the city.

“There has been no change in the procedure. Only the scrutiny process has been made a bit more stringent to ensure if there is actually a necessity for the applicant to carry an arms licence,” says the SSP.

Most city youths, however, feel there is no harm in keeping a weapon as long
as it is legal.

“In a city like Chandigarh where carrying of arms is completely banned, such strictness is understandable.

But where there is no such restriction, the authorities should be fair in judging the threat perception of the applicants,” they say.



 Bank asked to pay Rs 10,000 compensation
Tribune News Service

Amritsar, February 29
The state consumer disputes redressal commission, Punjab, has found a private bank deficient in providing services and slapped a compensation of Rs 10,000 for mental agony and harassment to a customer.

In his complaint filed against ICICI Bank, Kirpal Singh of Rattan Plastic Industries, Hussainpura, Amritsar, alleged that he had an account with the bank and had been doing regular transactions.

However, when he went to deposit an amount of Rs 95,000 in his account at the Sangli branch, he was told that the account had been closed.

He said he had issued cheques for the like amount and had to inform the persons not to present the cheques.

On reaching Amritsar, the complainant found that cheques issued by him had been returned by the bank with the remark “Account closed.” The applicant said he had never sought closure of the account but the bank never bothered to inform him that the account had been closed.

He demanded that the account be made operational again and compensation to the tune of Rs 4 lakh be given to him.

The commission directed the bank to send the balance amount of the appellant (Rs 20,838), along with 9 per cent interest per annum from the date of the closure of the account within one month from the date of issue of the order.

The bank has also been asked to pay Rs 10,000 as compensation, including
litigation charges.



Pay Rs 100 and watch 5 latest films at home
Tribune News Service

Amritsar, February 29
Watching “now showing” films has never been so affordable in the past. Shell out Rs 100 for a pirated DVD and watch as many as five latest releases, that too in the comfort of your living room.

Despite the tall claims by the district police about the crackdown on illegal CDs and DVDs in the city, they continue to sell like hot cakes, especially in the walled city area. Days after a film is released, its available on the DVD, with at least four other latest films released during the fortnight.

In a raid conducted on January 6, the district police seized thousands of pirated CDs, VCDs and DVDs of newly released movies like “Welcome” and “Saawariya” and arrested one person in this regard.

A case has been registered at the local Civil Lines police station on a complaint of the Indian Music Industry, a consortium of over 75 music companies.

“Till the time DVDs with only one film were available, customers preferred to buy CDS as they were easy to play on any player. But the combo packs of DVDs, which come with as many as five latest movies, have become an instant hit, especially with youngsters,” a shopkeeper in Hall Bazar said.

“Except for certain movies, like “Life in a Metro,” most recent films are available on DVDs. The latest to hit the market is the DVD which has ‘Jodhaa Akbar,’ ‘Sunday,’ ‘Halla Boll,’ ‘Welcome’ and ‘Taare Zameen Par.’ The customers cannot ask for a better deal than this,” he adds.

Besides Hindi and English movies, MP CDs also have a fixed clientele in the city and songs of the latest films and pop albums can be had at Rs 50.

“Things have changed in recent years. People now have CD players in their cars and DVD players at home. Unless one is a true film buff, who wants to enjoy a film in the theatre, there is nothing like watching the latest films on a DVD, especially in cities where the local cable operators do not show latest films,” says another shopkeeper. SSP Kunwar Vijay Pratap Singh was not available for comments.



 Vidya Mandir Forum adopts deserted boy
Sanjay Bumbroo
Tribune News Service

RamanAmritsar, February 29
The Citizens Vidya Mandir Forum recently adopted four-year-old Raman who had been deserted by his mother after the death of his father and is providing him food and clothes.

The condition of Raman, who was living with his old grandfather, was very poor as he did not get food for days together.

His grandfather earned a meagre amount by pulling a rickshaw and was not able to earn sufficient funds to feed himself and the child.

Raman’s father had died while driving a rickshaw a few months ago and his mother deserted the child and the old man by marrying another person. The hapless child was also forced to do odd jobs to help his grandfather.

Forum chairman Brij Bedi, talking to Amritsar Plus, said that when they came to know about the boy they decided to visit the house of the hapless child.

He said they were shocked to see the plight of the two-member family and decided to adopt the child and provide him two meals a day, besides some clothes. He said the child could have died as he had been without meals for many days.

He said after coming to the forum Raman was taking keen interest in his studies after joining the school run by the CVMF for the children of Maqboolpura, one of the biggest slums of the state and popularly known as “locality of widows”. More than 400 children of the locality are getting free education in the school.



 Khalsa College students visit Bhabha centre
Tribune News Service

Amritsar, February 29
A group of 10 students of department of physics of the local Khalsa College returned after attending a week-long training course in radiochemistry division of Bhabha Atomic Research Centre (BARC), Mumbai.

Informing this, college principal Daljit Singh said the students performed advanced experiment on solid state nuclear track detectors (SSNTD) during their stay.

He said the students had the chance to visit and understand the working of India’s first nuclear reactor Apsara and the country’s first indigenously developed nuclear reactor Dhruva, besides visiting the vande graft, tandem accelerator and ISOMED facilities at the research centre. The group was led by Dr Taminder Singh of physics department.



Campus Buzz
Jashan-2008 kicks off at GNDU
Our Correspondent

Amritsar, February 29
Youth festivals help to develop personality and inculcate sense of discipline and national integration among students.

This was stated by GNDU vice-chancellor Dr Jai Rup Singh while inaugurating “Jashan-2008,” an inter-departmental cultural competition, here today.

Among others present on the occasion were Academic Affairs dean Prof Raghbir Singh, Students’ Welfare dean Prof A K Thukral and chief hostel warden Prof R S Sandhu.

Speaking on the occasion, Dr Jai Rup Singh said the students who would bring laurels to the university during inter-varsity national youth festivals would get special incentives and cash prizes.

Giving details about the youth fest, Thukral said more than 1,200 students from various departments were participating in it.

The students would compete in 25 cultural competitions, including dance, music, fine arts, literary and theatre.

Besides, 450 prizes would be awarded to the winners. Various competitions held on the opening day included shabad/bhajan, geet/gazal, folk song, western vocal and group song Indian.

Farewell party

The Officer's Association of GNDU bade a warm farewell to assistant registrar (general) Joga Singh and assistant registrar (registration) Amarjit Singh Happy on their superannuation here today.

The function which was held at the university guest house was presided over by registrar Dr R S Bawa. Joga Singh and Amarjit Singh joined GNDU in 1970.



 Workshop on ‘Planning education at crossroads’
Our Correspondent

Amritsar, February 29
Education on disaster management and environmental hazards should be kept in mind while framing policies and making strategies for urban planning.

This was stated by Prof A.K. Thukral, dean, Students Welfare, GNDU, during the inaugural session of a workshop on “Planning education at crossroads” here. The event was organised by the Guru Ram Das School of Planning of the university.

In his address, Surjit Singh, former chief town planner, Haryana, spoke on “Urban planning education - a learning art”. He said the spatial planning was an endeavour which involved political will, public participation and academic discipline.

He said it depended on understanding humans, their needs, activities and the environment they lived in.

Besides, the whole process of urban planning was intricate and complex as it was hard to attain consensus in a democratic planning process.

Another resource person, Dharam Singh, chief town planner (retd), Punjab and chairman, Chandigarh regional chapter, Punjab, stressed on the need of utilising services of experts and alumni as they would give an insight into the practical aspects of planning education.

He said there was a need to educate students on real estates marketing, land records, surveying techniques, etc, as it would help them to know about the local administration.



 Income Tax Appellate Tribunal member retires
Our Correspondent

Amritsar, February 29
After serving the department of income tax for 38 years, Income Tax Appellate Tribunal member Joginder Pall described his stint as satisfying and rewarding.

Talking to the Tribune, Pall said his four-decade long tenure had been a learning experience. He said he tried his best to uphold the rule of law during his service.

Born on March 1, 1946, Pall graduated from Government College in Tanda Urmur and completed his post-graduation from Government College, Hoshiarpur.

He joined the Indian Revenue Services in November 1970 and remained posted in Gujarat till 1978. He also worked as under secretary in the department of personnel and administrative reforms and was promoted to deputy secretary till 1982.

Describing his career, he said he acted diligently to maintain the sanctity of the Appellate Tribunal which aimed at providing easy and quick justice to the people. He said he considered the court room as a temple of justice.



Railway budget disappointing, says AVM
Our Correspondent

Amritsar, February 29
In spite of some reservation, the railway budget presented by railway minister Lalu Prasad Yadav on the whole was disappointing.

Stating this, the Amritsar Vikas Manch (AVM), headed by manch patron Mohan Singh said the railway minister showed less interest in providing the much-publicised rail link between Patti and Ferozepore as also in expeditious completion of ongoing link between Ludhiana and Chandigarh at Morinda.

Singh said due to enhanced religious tourism in the holy city, the Jammu Tawi-Thiruvanathapuram Express should be diverted via Amritsar to fulfil the long-standing demand of the city, emerging as a preferred destination among pilgrims and businessmen, to get a direct train from South India.

Surprisingly, there is no direct train between Gujarat capital Ahmedabad and Amritsar, he said.



 Public perception of police performance
Tribune News Service

Amritsar, Febuary 29
The makers of the Indian Constitution have beautifully made three wings of the government - Legislature, Executive and Judiciary - and the country will run very well if all these wings perform their functions within their own respective fields without grabbing functions of any other wing.

The Legislature, which comprises the members elected by the people, makes law after that it should leave it to the administration and executives. The political interference in the working of the administrative machinery of the government at any level and to any extent is most undesirable.

— Legal luminary Sudarshan Kapoor

After the new police head took charge in April, 2007, of Amritsar, the city has witnessed unprecedented changes and improvements in the police administration. “File your own FIR scheme” is a unique and novel idea introduced for the first time in India and is being sought to be replicated in other states as well. It is learnt that hundreds of new FIR’s have been registered under this scheme, in addition to the regular FIR’s registered at various police stations. Registering complaints by e-mail has also been introduced. In fact the whole working of the police administration has been upgraded by using modern technology and computerisation.

— Vikram S. Uppal, Rotary Club Civil Lines chief

Women police officers, who were previously confined to the headquarters only for being deployed on VIP duty, have now been posted as PROs at all police stations which has tremendously improved the working of the police force. It has changed the environment at the police stations and now any woman can go alone fearlessly to any police station to lodge a complaint.

— Amandeep Sekhon, Principal, Indian Public School

The traffic in Amritsar is multi-lane and multi-planer in which animal-drawn carts and expensive cars vie with each other for the same space. Strict measures are still desired to keep the ever increasing traffic under control and to check the violators of traffic rules and to protect the lives of innocent, law-abiding public.

The traffic problem of the city can be managed, only if the traffic police, the municipal corporation, social organisations and public at large cooperate and coordinate with one another at all levels.

— Dr Ravijit Singh, ophthalmological surgeon

Encroachments need to be removed to ease traffic congestion. The drive undertaken by the police to remove encroachments gets nullified when local politicians with vested interests put pressure to get them back.

This problem can only be tackled when all segments of society rise above their self interests and work for the betterment of the city. He appeals to all the well-meaning citizens of Amritsar to raise their voice in protest and only then something meaningful will happen.

— Ranjit Singh Sandhu, a businessman

The public posturing of certain politicians is disappointing who instead of appreciating the positive steps taken by the police try their best to criticise and demoralise them. The results in solving blind murders and other crimes have shown tremendous improvement. Start of beat system by local constables will help in reducing the crime rate in the ever expanding city.

— G. S. Sekhon, CII member



 Amit Devgan adjudged ‘Mr University Campus’
Our Correspondent

Amritsar, February 29
Amit Devgan of Law Department was adjudged “Mr University Campus” in the Guru Nanak Dev University campus inter-department best physique competitions which concluded here on Thursday.

The following are the winners in the various categories of the competitions: Amandeep Singh of commerce and business management (CBM) won in the 60-kg category, while Hitesh Bhagat of department of computer science and engineering (CSE) bagged the first position in the 60-65-kg category.

Karanpal Singh of CSE and Amit Devgan of Law Department won in 65-70 kg and 70-kg categories, respectively. Prof A.K. Thukral, dean, Students Welfare, gave away trophies to the winners.



 ‘Sirjana’ - a play against female foeticide - staged
Our Correspondent

Amritsar, February 29
“Sirjana”, a play by the SSAI Creations theatre group, was staged at Punjab Naatshala to encourage people to fight female foeticide with all force and determination. It was an attempt to shake the hearts and conscience of the audience.

Written by Pali Bhupinder, the play was directed by Bollywood actor and theatre artiste Gurinder Makna. In the play a woman, who is the owner of 40-acre land, forces her daughter-in-law to abort her second girl child.

However, the daughter-in-law opposes this and refuses to comply with the orders of her mother-in-law. Her husband also joins her wife.

Gurinder Makna, Vinod Mehra, Dolly Saddal, Rajbir Kaur, Harmeet Sangi and Neha Arora performed on the stage.

Meanwhile, Pali Bhupinder and Pappu Rakesh, another film actor and producer, were given the late Yash Sharma award. SSP Kunwar Vijay Partap Singh was the chief guest on the occasion.



School founder remembered
Tribune News Service

Amritsar, February 29
A function was organised at Mahant Kaushal Das DAV Public School to remember the founder of the school on his seventh death anniversary.

Paramjit Kumar, school principal, said tributes were paid to Mahant Kaushal Das by the students and teachers of the school.

It was pointed out that his message was as relevant in today’s times and the emphasis on keeping the moral values intact advocated by him should be followed in true spirit.



 Kairon’s daughter-in-law passes away
Tribune News Service

Amritsar, February 29
Balbir Kaur Kairon, daughter-in-law of former Chief Minister of joint Punjab Partap Singh Kairon, passed away recently after a prolonged illness.

She had used her influence to further the cause of women education and had led the struggle against child infanticide and the dowry system. She was admitted to the PGI, Chandigarh, and died on February 25.

Born on August 5, 1934, at Sarhali village in Tarn Taran district, to Dalip Singh Sandhu who belonged to the famous “Shura” (which means dagger in Punjab) family, Balbir Kaur also took keen interest in social welfare and empowerment of women.

She was also a deeply religiously inclined person and encouraged people to donate liberally to various charitable institutions, including Pingalwara, to provide help for the needy. She was a widely travelled person.

Balbir Kaur had studied at the Kairon school for girls and went on to do her graduation at the Ludhiana Government College for Women, besides doing her home science diploma from Lady Irwin College in Delhi.

She married Gurinder Singh Kairon after Partap Singh Kairon won the first Constituent Assembly elections from this region against Baba Gurdit Singh Sandhu of Kama Gata Maru fame.

This was a political marriage as Kairon wanted to strengthen his base in this region. She took active part in the elections of her father-in-law and later other Kairon family elections. She is survived by her husband Gurinder Singh Kairon, a son and two daughters.



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