P U N J A B    S T O R I E S


School Board declares Class x results
Pass percentage up by 10
Chitleen K. Sethi
Tribune News Service

Mohali, June 14
The Punjab School Education Board has recorded 10 per cent increase in pass percentage of Class X examinations this year. The results of matriculation were declared by the board here today.

As many as 71.59 per cent of the students who appeared in the examination in March this year have passed. Almost 3.6 lakh students appeared in the examination.

At a press conference here board chairman Dr D.S. Dhillon said 75 per cent of the regular candidates had passed and 61 per cent of the private candidates. Compared to this last year only 65 per cent of the regular candidates and 50 per cent of the private candidates had passed. In 2006, pass percentage of regular students was 60 and only 50 per cent of the private candidates had passed.

A majority of the top positions in the merit list of 110 have been won by girls. Girls have also done better than boys in the examination. While 96.8 per cent of regular girl candidates have passed, 73.4 per cent of the boys have passed. However, the number of girls who appeared in the examination is almost 28,000 lower than the number of boys.

This year’s topper is Neeraj Saini of Maharana Pratap Sr Sec School, Pathankot, securing 93.69 per cent marks. Deepshi of Navyug Shishu Mandir High School, Moga, is second and Jandeep Kaur of Baba Biram Das DAV Public School, Chanarthal Khurd, Fatehgarh Sahib, is third in the state.

The next slots in the state are held by Kirandeep Kaur (Amritsar), Jaspreet Kaur (Hoshiarpur), Shruti (Moga), Aaina Goyal (Mansa), Anureet Kaur (Amritsar), Amritpal Kaur (Amritsar), Abhinash Brotia (Hoshiarpur), Amandeep Kaur (Amritsar), Diksha Gupta (Patiala), Anshu Malini (Pathankot), Anchal Chaudhary (Nawan Shahar), Priya Sharma (Amritsar), Renu Jindal (Mansa), Shivanki (Mansa), Jaspreet (Hoshiarpur), Priya Jindal (Mansa), Bhavna (Nawan Shahar), Vikas Bakshi (Amritsar) and Rozy Rani (Sangrur).

Many students of Navyug Shishu Mandir High School Moga, S. Chetan Sarvhitkari Sr Sec School, Mansa, Guru Nanak Public Sr Sec School, Channke Adda Di Khuhi Amritsar, Prabhakar Sr Sec School, Bhalla Colony Cheheratta, Shri Tara Chand Mandir, Bhikhi Mansa, and SD Sarvhitkari Vidya Mandir, Talwara, Hoshiarpur, have made it to the merit list.

Detailed results will be available from midnight tonight on websites www.indiaresult.com, www.iflsets.com and also through SMS services of various mobile telephone service operators.

For the first time in many years the board made the result gazettes available on the day of the declaration of the result. The gazettes had reached the board’s district depots by 2 pm today.


Ravi-Beas project-II ill-conceived: Dept
Chander Parkash
Tribune News Service

Madhopur (Pathankot), June 14
Dubbing the second Ravi-Beas link project, cleared by the Centre on the concept report of the Haryana government without taking consent of the Punjab government early this year, as ill-conceived and anti-Punjab action, the state Irrigation Department is likely to prepare a report opposing the same.

During a visit to areas alongside the Ravi by principal secretary (irrigation and power) Suresh Kumar and other officials of the department yesterday, it was found that the project, one of the 14 such national projects, would affect the Uppar Bari Doab Canal system apart from causing waterlogging in a vast area.

A senior official of the department, while taking to The Tribune, said the Haryana government’s action in submitting the concept report without carrying out a proper survey was an “anti-Punjab” stance.

According to the concept report, under the second Ravi-Beas link project, about 10,000 cusecs water was to be diverted to Hari-Ke headworks from the Ravi by linking both through a 80-km canal. This would save water flowing to Pakistan.

The water was supposed to be used by the Punjab government for irrigation and in return it was supposed to give 10,000 cusecs water to Haryana for irrigation through the Bhakra Main Line (BML) canal system.

A section of senior officials of the department claimed that the project would ruin Punjab. It was not feasible because the construction of a new reservoir alongside the existing Madhopur reservoir was not possible as the right bank of the Ravi at that particular point fell into Pakistan territory, they added.

The project would lead to lakhs of hectares of area in Punjab being inundated like what happened in Muktsar, Faridkot and Ferozepur districts after the construction of the Rajasthan feeder canal.

“We will submit a report opposing this ill-conceived project within a week to the Punjab government,” said one of the top-ranking officials of the department.

He said even the Central Water Commission, which convened a meeting of the officials of Punjab, Haryana and Rajasthan in 2007, had categorically expressed that the project was not feasible and advised the Haryana government to rethink over the same.

Meanwhile, the officials also examined various sites near Madhopur headworks for selecting a suitable site for the installation of a statue of the founder president of the Jan Sangh.


Dharna against withdrawal of tube well scheme
Harbinder Singh
Tribune News Service

Bathinda, June 14
On the last day of the three-day protest against the withdrawal of the OYT (own your tube well) scheme and for the grant of new tube well connection (general category), farmers under the banner of the Bharatiya Kisan Union (Ekta) Ugrahan staged a dharna against the state government in front of the deputy commissioner’s office here today. District president of the BKU Shingara Singh Mann led the protest.

On May 29, the Punjab State Electricity Board (PSEB) had withdrawn the OYT scheme that aimed at providing early tube well connections to the farmers after some marginal and poor farmers complained of being fleeced by the private firms.

The farmers said the private companies had been charging high price for the material required for the connections, including transformers, conductors, discs and cables.

“Distressed over the suspension of the scheme, Iqbal Singh, a farmer from Khiyali Wala village in Bathinda district, allegedly resorted to committing suicide,” said Mann.

Another farmer at the dharna said there were several applicants, who had mortgaged land and other belongings to purchase the required material for the installation of a tube well. On the one hand, they were fleeced by the private firms while on the other they had to wait for the connections.

Farmers lamented they had sown paddy in place of cotton this time. But with the suspension of the OYT scheme they were finding themselves on the receiving end. Moreover, they were not in a position to sow any other crop.

The leaders addressing the gathering demanded the tube well connections (general category) pending since 1991 should be allotted and the OYT scheme should be resumed. They wanted a probe into fleecing by private firms that sold the material at high prices. The excess money charged should be refunded and those found guilty should be prosecuted .


Forged Documents Case
CBI court awards 6-year jail to five
Attar Singh
Tribune News Service

Patiala, June 14
The CBI court here has awarded six years in jail to five persons in a case relating to forged documents.

Special magistrate Rakesh Kumar Gupta today sentenced Sardara Singh, Puran Singh, Gurnam Singh, Rajinder Pal Singh and Anoop Sood finding them guilty of forging the documents of the Supreme Court (SC) allegedly to help three of them get bail.

In 1980, Sardara Singh, Puran Singh and Gurnam Singh were given various terms by the Bathinda Sessions Court. While Sardara and Puran were given life imprisonments, Gurnam was handed out seven-year jail.

The three appealed against their sentence in the Punjab and Haryana High Court and subsequently in the SC which rejected their appeals. In between, Anoop Sood and Rajinder Pal came into contact with the three accused. Both Anoop and Rajinder forged bail documents of the SC in an attempt to get bail for the accused.

Subsequently, they furnished the bail papers before the SC. The court, on its part, sent release orders to the Bathinda jail authorities after which the three were freed. The release orders were later sent to the SC.

However, what went against the accused was the fact that the SC denied having sent such orders to the Bathinda jail authorities. The SC then asked the CBI to investigate the entire case.

The CBI later registered a case in 1991 under Sections 420, 466, 467 and 120, IPC. All five accused were sent to the Patiala Central jail.



MC Polls
No SAD-BJP pact on Bhawanigarh
Sushil Goyal
Tribune News Service

Sangrur, June 14
The SAD-BJP alliance today “failed” to reach a consensus on the distribution of wards of the Bhawanigarh municipal council.

A meeting of leaders of the SAD and the BJP was held at the local residence of secretary-general of the SAD Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa recently. It was attended among others by area in charge of the SAD for the Sangrur Assembly constituency Parkash Chand Garg and Rajinder Singh Kanjhla and Jatinder Kalra, district presidents of the SAD and the BJP, respectively.

It was decided that the SAD would contest 10 seats and the BJP three in Bhawanigarh. The BJP demanded seats of ward numbers 1, 7 and 11.The SAD agreed to give ward numbers 7 and 11 to the BJP but declined to spare ward number 1.

Talking to The Tribune today, Kalra said both parties could not reach a consensus over seat-sharing in Bhawanigarh. The SAD’s refusal to spare ward number one led to the BJP deciding to contest all 13 wards, he added.

Kalra said, however, the alliance would contest elections jointly in Sangrur, Sunam, Ahmedgarh, Dhuri and Lehragaga while talks were still on regarding distribution of seats of the Malerkotla MC.

Meanwhile, former municipal councillor Sat Pal Khurana (1992 to 1997) joined the BJP last night, He has been given party ticket from ward number 4. On Thursday, former president of Sangrur MC Mahesh Kumar Singla joined the Congress, quitting the SAD. The Congress has given party ticket to his wife Kamlesh Singla from ward number 17 of the Sangrur MC.



Police wing to guide, help tourists
Sanjeev Singh Bariana
Tribune News Service

Phillaur, June 14
The police in Punjab is to have a wing to promote tourism and help in tourism related affairs in the state. A pilot project training junior officers from Amritsar, Kapurthala, Patiala and Ropar districts ended at the Punjab Police Academy (PPA) here today.

The academy is in the process of deciding a logo to be worn on the arms by specially trained cops. The trained cops, in the current batch, will go back to their headquarters and prepare a separate team in each district. The programme provides enough academic material to brush up knowledge about important places, particularly from the point of view of historical and tourist interest. The pilot project was conducted by Walter Schuller, from the United Nations World Tourism Organisation.

Schuller said congeniality was the first expectation of a tourist, while seeking information in a foreign land. "For example, a tourist in Amritsar would like to know details about hotels, modes of travel, places of tourist interest and the best way he could plan his itinerary. The course lays stress on orienting cops towards guiding tourists," he said.

An ASI, attending the workshop, said, "The general public’s perception about the Punjab Police is not very good. The public dealing receives a lot of criticism. One of the major reasons was that during cops training period, very little stress was laid on developing their public dealing aspect. Moreover, coarse language seemed to be the hallmark of the police."

D.J.Singh, senior deputy director and dean of the academy, said, "In the pilot project, a core team of six trainers has been formed. After their session at the academy, they will go back to their headquarters in the districts and carry forward the lessons. The academy will be monitoring the success of the programme and also design follow-up programmes".

A senior officer said, "Such programmes will mean little unless planned in an overall perspective. I think the effort to pick up selected officers from districts and train them specially for tourist dealing should be spread to the overall police activity, instead of mere tourism. Tourists would definitely get benefit if the police first won the trust of the general public regarding its functioning".


Security Breach at Attari Post
Customs officer transferred
Our Correspondent

Amritsar, June 14
The fallout of the security breach by Bangladeshi national Abu Tahir, who sneaked into the Pakistan territory hiding himself in an onion-laden truck, resulted today in the shifting of a senior Customs officer to the headquarters with immediate effect.

Abu, attired in the uniform of a porter, had hoodwinked the Customs authorities and other security agencies posted at the Attari joint check-post.

He was detected by the Pakistani authorities while unloading the truck at their Customs barrier.

The Pakistani authorities immediately got in touch with the BSF and handed over the Bangladesh national who, during initial interrogation, revealed that he had managed to hoodwink the securitymen to land in Pakistan, seeking greener pastures in that country.


Use of Fly Ash
Highway officials flout norms
Sarbjit Dhaliwal
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, June 14
The Ropar thermal plant authorities have taken a serious note of the violation of the notification issued by the Union government with regard to the use of fly ash generated by the thermal plant for a national road project.

In a complaint submitted to the Panchkula-based project director, National Highways Authority of India, the thermal plant authorities have stated that the fly ash is not being used in the national highway that is being widened and re-laid from Kurali to Kiratpur Sahib.

Under the notification issued by the Union government on September 14, 1999, the use of fly ash, if it is available, is mandatory for all projects being constructed in the 100 km radius of any thermal plant.

The authorities concerned in the thermal plant told The Tribune that the copy of the notification had also been sent to the project director to bring to his notice the violation.

The authorities said that about 2 crore metric tonnes of fly ash was available at the Ropar thermal plant and it could be used in the road project to build its embankments and also to fill the low-lying areas to be used for the road construction.

The matter has also been brought to the notice of the environmental engineer of the Punjab Pollution Control Board ( PPCB), asking him to get the notification implemented in case of the national highway road project.

The PPCB authorities have the power to get the notification implemented. The location of the project, in fact, is just only a few miles away from the Ropar thermal plant, where ash is available in huge quantity.

A senior officer of the Ropar thermal plant said it was easier for the national highway authorities to use the ash for the project. A copy of the complaint has also been forwarded to additional director, ministry of forests.

“We are serious to get the notification implemented come what may. We are even contemplating to take legal recourse in this regard,” said a senior official of the thermal plant.

He said it was the duty of the national highways authorities to ask its contractors engaged to construct the road to lift the fly ash from the thermal plant for use in the road project. 


Tehsildar in soup again
P.K. Jaiswar

Amritsar, June 14
Tehsildar Rajesh Sharma, who had been suspended for allegedly registering a fake power of attorney of Prime Minister’s property in New Delhi, has now been indicted for conniving with two persons in a land scam. A probe into the case was carried out by deputy commissioner Kahan Singh Pannu.

Yashdev Inder Singh and his brothers Jagdev Inder Singh and Jaidev Inder Singh had alleged that Brig G.S. Khehra (retd) of Green Avenue and Sudesh Khanna of Panchkula (Haryana), in connivance with Rajesh Sharma, had transferred their 10.76 acres in the name of their relatives (Khehra and Sudesh) on a price much lesser than the deal price.

In his inquiry report, Pannu pointed out that Rajesh failed to pre-audit the registries of controversial land transfer which was done showing lesser amount. Pannu has concluded that the power of attorney, on the basis of which the land was transferred, was also forged.

Meanwhile, Khehra said the power of attorney was legal. He said since the land prices had risen, the owners were making false claims about the cancellation of the attorney. He said he had taken a stay from lower court.


Vedanti for avoiding code row
Varinder Walia
Tribune News Service

Amritsar, June 14
Even as Giani Joginder Singh Vedanti has admitted that there is disparity of “maryada” (Sikh code) being pursued by managements of certain gurdwaras in the country, he has urged the Sikh Sangat not to kick off any controversy till the tercentenary celebrations of the “Gurta Gaddi” of Guru Granth Sahib, which falls this year.

It is pertinent to mention here that the “maryada” of Takht Hazoor Sahib, Nanded (Maharashtra), where the tercentenary celebrations are being held in a big way, is quite different from the Sikh Code, approved by Akal Takht and the Sikh shrines under the direct management of the SGPC. Akal Takht has categorically stated that no holy book could be equated with Guru Granth Sahib.

Despite appeal made by Jathedar of Akal Takht for maintaining truce over the “maryada” issue, Giani Iqbal Singh and Giani Kulwant Singh, jathedars of Patna Sahib and Hazoor Sahib, respectively, are unlikely to oblige him. They have already taken a serious note of the stand of the Sikh clergy of Punjab by reversing the edict of Patna Sahib with regard to Dasam Granth.


Ex-minister Khiala dead
Our Correspondent

Mansa, June 14
Former Punjab minister and leader of the Shiromani Akali Dal (1920) Baldev Singh Khiala (72) died in a private hospital here today.

Khiala was elected MLA four times from Joga constituency (1977, 1980, 1985 and 1997). He was rural development and panchayat minister in the Surjeet Singh Barnala’s government.

The former minister was cremated at his Khiala Kalan village. MLA Ajit Inder Singh Moffar, CPI national council member Hardev Singh Arshi, MLA Ajaib Singh Bhatti, MLA Mangat Rai Bansal, MLA Sher Singh Gagowal, leaders of the SAD (1920), former MLA Sukhwinder Singh Aulakh, deputy commissioner Surjeet Singh Dhillon and other officials were present at the cremation. 


Paddy Cultivation
Drip irrigation saves 70 pc water
Sanjeev Singh Bariana
Tribune News Service

Rurka Kalan (Jalandhar), June 14
More than 200 farmers from across the state on Thursday visited this village to see the results of a pilot project on paddy cultivation.

Under the new technique, the seed is planted directly and drip irrigation saves more than 70 per cent water.

Farmers came from villages in Bathinda, Amritsar, Ferozepur, Ropar, Ludhiana and Jalandhar districts. Chief agricultural officer (Jalandhar) Swatanter Kumar Airy, Dr Jagmohan Singh, former professor of Punjab Agricultural University, and Gurinder Singh Pandher, who has developed the dibbler (a machine) for paddy plantation were present.

Also present was Kashmir Singh from Nawan Pind, who used the dibbler technique to plant paddy on approximately five acres.

Angrez Singh, a farmer from Jalandhar, said: “One of the biggest reasons why paddy plantation, using this technique, was not very popular was rampant weed growth which meant a lot of expenditure on manpower and finances in maintaining the crop. The conference today featured two products which have shown excellent results in controlling the growth of weed”.

Kulwant Singh Sandhu said: “I have been employing the drip-irrigation technique for the past nearly six years. The yield is no lesser than that from normal paddy cultivation. Using lesser water for paddy is the need of the hour as falling underground water level can spell a disaster for human civilisation in the near future”.

Showing the results of innovative cultivation at his field, Kulwant said: “The crop is planted using a dibbler, an instrument developed by Gurinder Singh of Kulahad village, near Ahmedgarh. The technique involves planting the seeds straightaway”.

Dr P.N. Singh, a senior officer with a bio-fertiliser unit in Bathinda, said: “The results look very impressive. One of the biggest problems involved in the technique under discussion was how to put a check on weeds. In case, weed-controlling chemicals show positive results, we can think of using this technique at a lager scale to save water”.

Dilbagh Singh from Pasla village said: “I heard about the technique last year. The fast-depleting underground water table is one of the major reasons why farmers will be drawn toward the innovative technique.”

“Opposite to the misnomer, paddy is not a pure water plant. Water helps in controlling the weeds, which is why farmers use excessive water during paddy cultivation. In case, we could control weeds, lesser water supply perfectly suits paddy.”


Cop held with drugs, luxury cars
Our Correspondent

Amritsar, June 14
Directorate of Revenue Intelligence officials nabbed Rachan Singh, head constable posted in Sangrur, from the Delhi-Jaipur highway today and seized 60 kg of amphetamine and 150 kg of catamine chemical worth Rs 1.5 crore from him.

Dheeraj Rastogi, joint director, DRI, said Rachan had been a kingpin in the drug trade and had a Canadian permanent residency green card. He said the cop was caught with his brand new Skoda Octivia car while Ford Endeavor, without registration, was also recovered from him.

During the raid at his house in Sangrur, the DRI seized more than Rs 12 lakh in cash and two more cars parked there. 


2 Pak nationals held
Tribune News Service

Amritsar, June 14
The BSF has arrested two Pakistani nationals while they were trying to sneak into Indian territory.

Company commander, battalion 3, Jai Raj Yadav has said Munir Hussain and Muhammad Asif of Narowal district (Pakistan) entered into Indian territory near the Shahpur border post.

A case has been registered under Sections 3, 34 and 20 of the Indian Passport Act and 14 of the Foreign Act.


HOME PAGE | Punjab | Haryana | Jammu & Kashmir | Himachal Pradesh | Regional Briefs | Nation | Opinions |
| Business | Sports | World | Letters | Chandigarh | Ludhiana | Delhi |
| Calendar | Weather | Archive | Subscribe | Suggestion | E-mail |