BJP to go solo
Yoginder Gupta
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 3
Despite the humiliating defeat in the recent byelections in the state, the Haryana BJP still wants to go alone in the Lok Sabha elections.

Though the defeat has eroded the state leadership's authority considerably to oppose the high command's plans for an alliance with the INLD of Om Prakash Chautala, it is trying to convince the central leadership to go alone at least in the Lok Sabha elections.

According to sources in the Haryana BJP, the state leadership is of the view that the electorate of the state is quite discerning. It understands the difference between the issues at play during the Lok Sabha and Assembly elections.

It knows that regional parties have no role to play in the Lok Sabha, unless they align with a national party. In the context of Haryana, the BJP state leadership says, only two national parties matter — the Congress and the BJP. The BSP is yet to prove its mettle in Haryana. The INLD and the Haryana Janhit Congress (HJC) of Kuldeep Bishnoi are the only two regional outfits worth any reckoning in the state.

Haryana BJP leaders have argued before their central leaders that the INLD, though its leaders claim it to be a national party, still remains a regional party, which will have no role to play in the Lok Sabha elections. In support of their argument, these leaders point out whenever the INLD, or for that matter any regional party in Haryana, has contested the Lok Sabha elections alone, it has failed to put up an impressive performance.

During the 2004 Lok Sabha poll, though the INLD was ruling the state, it could not win even a single seat. So much so even the two sons of the then Chief Minister Chautala had to taste defeat.

The BJP on the other hand was able to win at least one seat, despite a strong anti-incumbency against the then union and state governments. The BJP leaders say the newly-formed HJC too would not be able to make any mark in the Lok Sabha elections.

The BJP, they say, will be able to win a considerable number of seats on its own in Haryana given the national perspective in which the Lok Sabha elections would be held. In that case, the BJP can bargain on the number of seats the party would like to contest in the Assembly elections, if it decides to go for an alliance in 2010, when the Assembly elections are due.

Giving another argument to oppose the party's alliance, these leaders say as Chief Minister Chautala had treated the BJP cadre badly, the latter would shift its votes to other parties in case of the INLD-BJP alliance. They say if the high command must go for an alliance, then it should go for the HJC, which would be too willing to leave the bulk of the Lok Sabha seats for the BJP to contest.

As a matter of strategy, the party may announce its candidates for a number of Lok Sabha seats in the state much before the poll is due. The party is likely to nominate former MP Rattan Lal Kataria from Ambala; former union minister of state for home affairs I.D. Swami from Karnal; sitting MP Kishan Singh Sangwan from Sonepat; Capt Abhimanyu from Rohtak; former MP Ram Chand Bainda from Faridabad and former MP Sudha Yadav from either Gurgaon or the newly-created constituency of Mahendragarh-Bhiwani.

In a way, it will be a clear message by the party that it would not settle for less than six of the 10 Lok Sabha seats in Haryana if it has to go for an alliance under pressure from its Punjab ally, the Akali Dal of Prakash Singh Badal.



Highway soil upturned

Rift in dept causes trouble for commuters
Sushil Manav

Fatehabad, July 3
Owing to a tug of war between the Public Works Department (national highways) and the Public Works Department (public health), people have been facing a lot of inconvenience for the past four months.

The PWD (public health) has been digging a section of the NH-10 passing through the town for laying sewer pipes for the past four months.

But after laying the pipes, the department has not been repairing the roadsides properly.

Rather, the department has been simply putting earth in the pits without proper compression of the soil.

Even the cuts on the highway at various places have been left un-repaired.

The PWD (public health) authorities maintain that the road cuts will be repaired by the PWD (NH) authorities as they have already deposited the required funds for it with them but the PWD (NH) authorities refute their claim and maintain that even their approval has not been sought before digging the road.

Sources in the PWD (NH) maintained on condition of anonymity that even the claim of the PWD (B&R) regarding payment for repairs of roads is only partially true as the money had been paid for a cut on the road made earlier, while the present work is being carried without the approval of the PWD (NH) and without payment of the requisite money.

"We have sent a proposal for approval of road cuts to the national highway authorities and our letter is pending for approval," admitted the executive engineer of the PWD (Public Health) Karam Chand.

He said the approval took a long time as it had to come from the ministry level.

"We have deposited the funds, which are around Rs 10.50 lakh, with the national highways authorities. The road will be repaired by the PWD (NH) now while the pits on the roadsides will be repaired by our department," Karam Chand added.

Claims of the XEN notwithstanding, the roads are not being repaired nor are the roadside pits being filled.

A light shower and the road become pools. A number of cars have slided into pits during rainy days when the soft earth is eroded by the rainwater.

Cranes had to be pressed into service to retrieve these cars.

On many occasions unsuspecting persons have fallen into deep pits.

The issue was raised at the monthly meeting of deputy commissioner recently and despite specific orders of the DC O. P. Sheoran, things have not improved.

The highway continues to be a nightmare for drivers as it has been blocked from one side at Bighar crossing point since long.

One-upmanship between the two departments of the government is resulting in avoidable inconvenience to the local people.



Mango mela opens tomorrow
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 3
The eagerly awaited Mango mela will open at Yadavindra Gardens, Pinjore, on July 5.

The two-day annual event was started 17 years ago with twin objectives to promote tourism and to encourage growers to adopt the latest technology to increase the productivity and quality of their produce. It also provides an opportunity to the mango growers to exchange notes about cultivation and marketing of mangoes.

It is organised jointly by the tourism and horticulture departments of the state. Over the years, new features have been added to make the mela an eagerly-looked event for residents of tricity of Chandigarh , Panchkula and Mohali.

According to secretary of Haryana tourism Keshni Anand Arora, the mela will be inaugurated by agriculture minister H.S. Chatha at 5-30 pm on July 5. Minister of state for tourism Kiran Choudhry will preside over the inaugural function. Governor A.R. Kidwai will give away prizes to winners of various competitions organised early in the day on July 6.

On both evenings, cultural programmes will be presented by artistes of the North Zone Cultural Centre (NZCC).

On the opening day of the mela, entries of mangoes and mango products will be received at 7 a.m. Rangoli competition will be held at 12 noon, followed by face painting at 2 p.m., photography competition at 3 p.m., tambola at 4 p.m. and cultural programme at 6.30 p.m.

The highlights of the second day will be painting competition (10 a.m.), fancy dress competition (10.30 a.m.), mango cut-outs competition (11 a.m ), essay writing competition (12 noon), mango eating competition (1 p.m.), chef competition (2 p.m.), tambola (4 p.m.),  prize distribution function (6 p.m.) and cultural programme (6.30 pm).

Cash prizes and certificates will be given for mango varieties and mango products to institutions and individuals separately.



Faith no bar for jail inmates
Geetanjali Gayatri
Tribune News Service

Sirsa, July 3
Secularism behind bars — that’s what the district’s jail stands for and the personal involvement of inmates only lends more credence to this description. Powered by faith, the inmates, over the last few years, have pooled in their resources enough to lay a strong foundation for secularism to prosper on the jail’s premises.

Despite their varied backgrounds, they have managed to pump in nearly Rs 18 lakh for the construction of a temple, a gurdwara and a mazar in the heart of the jail. While the work of the temple was completed in December last year, the gurdwara and the mazar are near-completion. Clearly the pride of this jail and its inmates, these places of worship are their labour of love, where each one has contributed in his own way. Not only have they arranged for funds from their families to ensure that the work goes on, the inmates have built up these places with the sweat of their brow. Literally. After “designing” the building plans, the inmates have worked as labourers and as masons to give a personal touch to everything as the building came up brick by brick. This was done under the guidance of and in consultation with experts from the PWD (B & R) department.

While the mornings and evenings resound with the sound of the aarti at the temple, the gurdwara’s building is getting the final touches while work is in progress to construct a building around the mazar.

Explains Harinder Singh, DSP (jails), “We had a mazar on the jail premises when it was located in the city. Every Thursday, the gates would be thrown open to the public to offer prayers because everybody had a lot of faith in the place. When we shifted to this new place, the inmates brought some bricks from that mazar and laid these here. Since then, they had been wanting their place of worship and the result is for all to see.”

The jail authorities, not wanting to be involved with funds and finances, formed a committee of the inmates to coordinate and spend the money on the construction work. Recalls the DSP, “There was a cop-turned-convict by the name of Rajpal who came to the jail and first floated the idea of pooling in funds for the construction of a temple. He motivated other convicts also and before we knew it, the process got rolling. Some outsiders also chipped in by making contributions as the word spread.”

While some “gifted” idols for the temple, others have given stone for the gurdwara flooring or contributed by way of funds for construction work. The work on the two projects is underway and progressing fast with religious zeal.

The jail authorities, on their part too, are trying to “influence” the minds of the convicts by organising special yoga sessions, meditation camps, sessions with Brahm Kumaris. “We want them to go out as better human beings. A religious bent of mind will help them be calmer and take problems in their stride. Our jail sets us apart because we are the only ones to give representation to all religions within our own premises unlike other jails which usually have one temple tucked away in a corner. All this has come about due to the efforts of the inmates alone. We are proud of this sense of achievement and the camaraderie existing among the inmates,” says deputy superintendent, jail, JS Sethi.

Faith, the inmates believe, will move the mountains out of their way.



Sahitya Akademi chief under fire
Sushil Manav

Desh Nirmohi
Desh Nirmohi

Udai Bhanu Hans
Udai Bhanu Hans

Fatehabad, July 3
The Haryana Sahitya Akademi, a body set up for promoting literature and encouraging writers in Haryana, has been in the thick of a controversy after Udai Bhanu Hans, the state poet of Haryana and a member of the advisory committee of the Akademi, voiced his opinion against its director Desh Nirmohi. He was accused of ignoring traditional Hindi literature.

In his reply, Nirmohi had ridiculed the literary contribution of Hans.

Without specifically naming Hans, Nirmohi, in his editorial published in the edition of the Haryana Sahitya Akademi official journal 'Hari Gandha', had accused Hans of using unethical means for acquiring the tag of the state poet.

The Haryana Sahitya Akademi is chaired by Haryana Chief Minister and has the education minister and the education secretary as its senior functionaries.

Among the members of its advisory board are some literary figures and some bureaucrats.

The present controversy cropped up after the Haryana Sahitya Akademi announced its awards and grant-in-aids for the published books for the year 2007-08.

Udai Bhanu Hans, who is also a recipient of the 'Sur Puruskar' of the Haryana Sahitya Akademi in 2006, had taken exception to the manner in which the recipients of the awards and grant-in-aids had been selected by Nirmohi.

Hans met the Haryana education minister, Mange Ram Gupta, who is the senior vice chairman of the Akademi, and also shot a letter to Rajan Gupta, financial commissioner and secretary of the education department, who is the vice chairman of the Akademi.

"The Akademi has deviated from its role of honouring and promoting the writers of traditional literature and the exponent of so called ‘progressive literature’ with leftist tilt in their writings are being unduly favoured," Hans has alleged.

Retaliating to the outburst of Hans, Nirmohi had ridiculed him in his editorial published in the latest issue of 'Hari Gandha', the official magazine of the Haryana Sahitya Akademi.

"Those who have been using unethically-acquired tags, are now criticising our endeavours,” the editorial said.

Without naming Hans, the editorial went on to scorn him for instituting awards in his name in his lifetime.

"I am deeply pained by the editorial of Desh Nirmohi, who has chosen to launch personal attack on me. I am 82 now and I was bestowed with the honour of state poet in 1966, when Haryana was carved out of the joint Punjab. I instituted 'Hans awards' after my name because the Akademi had become non-functional after 1980 before Dr Chander Trikha revived it in 2000.

What I said was nothing personal against Nirmohi," Hans said while talking to The Tribune. Nirmohi, on the other hand, vehemently denied the allegations of Hans.

"Of the seven writers awarded and nine books selected by the Akademi, not more that than two can be branded as subscribing to the leftist thoughts, if there is any such distinction. If they are objecting to the names like Dr Sansar Chand, Sham Sakha Sham and Raj Krishan Nain, I can only pity them.

And if somebody says we are promoting leftist writers or progressive writers or 'janwadi writer’, there is nothing wrong in it. After all they have been sidelined for years by those criticising our working," said Nirmohi, when contacted by The Tribune.

"I have never written anything against Hans. Mine is a general editorial against those, who are criticising my working. The awardees are not selected by me but by a selection committee comprising a number of experts," he adds.



Varsity accused of hiding facts
Raman Mohan
Tribune News Service

Hisar, July 3
Is Kurukshetra University hiding something by claiming that it has no documentary evidence of the appointment of the principal of the local Dayanand College?

The answer is yes, going by the claim it has made in reply to a query by a local resident Anil Bhatia under the Right to Information Act. The KU public information officer has, in his reply to Bhatia, stated that the information regarding appointment of the principal concerned is not available with it “in a documentary form”.

This is despite the fact that the appointment is made by a selection committee that includes the representatives of the university and the Higher Education Commissioner (HEC), Haryana. The selection is conveyed to the vice-chancellor of the university in writing. The VC then approves the selection and the approval is conveyed to the college concerned in writing.

The university has also stated that it had no information “in a documentary form” regarding confirmation of the principal concerned in his post by the college managing committee and whether the nominees of the university and the HEC were present in the meeting in which the confirmation was approved.

Here, again, it is pertinent to mention that the managing body of the college sends information regarding the confirmation to the university in writing. Besides, a nominee of the university has to attend all meetings of the governing body. Likewise, the HEC nominee's presence in these meetings is also mandatory. The proceedings are recorded in writing and the university and HEC nominees are signatory to the minutes of such meetings.

The story does not end here. The university claims that it does not have any information "in a documentary form" on whether there is any common cadre and joint seniority list of staff of various DAV Colleges affiliated to it. The query was also raised by Anil Bhatia under the RTI Act.

Actually, the university is supposed to have a common seniority list of staff of DAV Colleges if it approves an appointment made by way of transfer from one DAV College to another. It has approved such appointments in the past, despite the fact there is no common seniority list of teachers of DAV Colleges in Haryana. Obviously, it is covering up for its lapse by claiming it has no documentary evidence of the existence of such a list.

Appointments made by way of transfer are not allowed under the Haryana Affiliated Colleges (Security of Service Act, 1979). In the past, the HEC has been approving such appointments in violation of the Act and the KU has been approving these appointments in violation of the provisions of its own calendar.

The violation of Haryana government and university rules by the DAV College managing committee, New Delhi, has been a bone of contention between the government, the university, and the teachers of DAV Colleges in Haryana for years. As per the Act, every DAV College in Haryana is supposed to have a separate governing body, which will have a term of three years, and nominees of the university and the HEC must be a part of this body. Yet, the DAV College managing committee, New Delhi is maintaining control over all DAV Colleges in the state.

The university has been caught on the wrong foot by the queries made by Anil Bhatia under the RTI Act.



Inside Babudom
Reshuffle put on hold
Yoginder Gupta
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, July 3
The much-expected and much-talked about administrative reshuffle in the state will be on hold, at least for the next two months. Reason? In view of the revision of electoral rolls, all those associated with the revision work cannot be transferred till the completion of the job, which is likely to take more than two months.

The electoral rolls are revised every year with January 1 as the reference date. All those who attain the age of 18 years on this day, become eligible to be a voter.

Hence, their names are to be included in the electoral rolls. This year was no exception. But in view of the delimitation of the Lok Sabha and Assembly constituencies this year, the electoral rolls have to be reconstructed as per the delimited constituencies.

Moreover, this year the Election Commission of India has decided to have photo-electoral rolls for all the constituencies. Therefore, it has ordered a special revision with January 1 as the qualifying date.

The administrative reshuffle in the districts is necessary in view of the Lok Sabha elections that are likely to be held by the end of the year or at best early next year.

The Election Commission norms require that no officer connected with the conduct of elections should have been posted in a particular place for more than three years. There are many DCs, who are the “returning officers” in the Lok Sabha elections, who have either already completed or will complete their three-year term by the time the elections would be held.

Sources close to Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda say it was never the intention of the Chief Minister to shake the administrative setup in a big way after the three Assembly byelections.

They say they do not know who started such rumours. Changes in the administration, they say, will be need-based. These will be made as and when felt required by the powers that be.

However, officers returning to their parent state after deputation with the Union government, have to wait for long before they are given postings.

The reasons for this unwanted delay are best known to the state government alone. Many of these officers are known for their brilliance, which the state should put to good use.



Tarsem Garg: Pai of Haryana
Yoginder Gupta
Tribune News Service

A view of MM University at night
A view of MM University at night

Chandigarh, July 3
What T.M.A. Pai is to Karnataka, Tarsem Garg is to Haryana, though on a smaller scale. The difference is understandable. Pai's mission was started 55 years ago, Garg embarked on the path to make professional education available at the doorstep of the people of the region 13 years ago.

If Pai established his first medical college in the rocky hinterland of the Malabar Coast in the early fifties, Garg first established an engineering college in one of the most politically backward districts of Hayana, Ambala. Pai's college was the beginning of the transformation of the sleepy village of Manipal into a university city.

Garg's college has turned the small town of Mullana into an educational hub.

Garg got the idea of setting up the engineering college after he visited a town in Maharashtra for admission of a friend's son in an engineering college there.

He felt children of Haryana had to go to other states because the private sector had not come forward to set up institutes of higher professional education. He decided to take up the challenge.

Garg, who was earlier in the construction business, set up a trust named after Maharshi Markandeshwar, a local saint, in 1993.

But, thanks to red-tapism, he could set up the engineering college only two years later in a rented building in Ambala city before the college was moved to the present site.

There was no looking back after that. In the next 12 years, several institutions imparting education in the field of management to medicine, computers to hotel management, were added. Last year, the University Grants Commission (UGC) accorded the status of deemed university to Garg's MM Education Trust. Now he is the chancellor of Maharishi Markandeshwar University, Mullana–Ambala, the first self-financing deemed university in the region.

The campus is spread over 170 acres, with many more acres to be added in the near future. All the institutes of the university have combined faculty strength of 850.

The university runs over 50 courses in various fields and has a strength of over 11,000 students, much more than Kurukshetra University has on its campus. The latest addition is an international school.

The university is planning to set up a three-star hotel "with five-star facilities" so that students of hotel management can be provided in-house practical training. Interestingly, Kurukshetra University, which also runs a course in hotel management, does not have even a kitchen to train students of this course.

The 500-bed hospital having modern facilities available on no-loss, no-profit basis, is a big gain for the pre-dominantly rural area. An MRI examination here costs Rs 1,200 against the average market rate of Rs 3,000.

As Garg says, keeping in line with the philosophy of his trust, buses fetch patients and their families to the hospital from the areas within a radius of 60 km free of cost.

Financial assistance is given to students who need it and are meritorious.



Rural employment scheme
Ambitious plans under job Act

Work on rainwater harvesting to begin soon
Vishal Joshi
Tribune News Service

Karnal, July 3
The ambitious National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (NREGA) is all set to give a new lease of life to the water bodies of this district.

Sources revealed that under the recently launched scheme, various gram panchayats of the district had shown keen interest in digging new ponds and maintaining the existing ones.

Works on the rainwater harvesting, plantation and rural connectivity, have been listed among the most preferred works by the respective panchayats.

NREGA was launched in Karnal by the Centre on April 1, 2008. Under this ambitious project, the gram panchayats have a right to offer work to the villagers from certain categories approved by the Centre.There are 380 panchayats for over 400 villages in the district.

Additional deputy commissioner (ADC), Lajvir Singh, said job cards to as many as 7,000 villagers had already been issued after registering them at their respective panchayats.

He said the allotment of work is expected to be made by the mid of July after the applicants get relieved from the paddy plantation in this paddy-rich district.

He said on the basis of the work plans demanded by the various panchayats and duly agreed at the district level, the final nod from the Centre was awaited before finally allotting work to the villagers.

A sum of Rs 1.90 crore had already been disbursed in advance to all the panchayats to start the work soon.

Singh said bank accounts of the panchayats and the beneficiaries would be opened in the same banks for immediate payments.

Officials hoped that besides jobs, the scheme would certainly change the face of the rural belt.

"With jobs readily available for plantation, digging and maintenance of existing ponds, we expect a sea change in environ of the villages. Help of experts can be taken while executing water management projects to improve water table in Karnal," said a senior government official.



Over 10,000 job cards ready
Bijendra Ahlawat
Tribune News Service

Jind, July 3
The District Rural Development Agency (DRDA) has prepared over 10,000 job cards for the unemployed looking for employment in the unskilled category under the ‘National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (NREGA) launched in the district in April this year. The nationwide scheme funded by the Union government had already been launched in many other districts of the state in order to provide employment of at least 100 days in a year to the unskilled labour in the rural areas.

It is to be mentioned that anyone who has a job card is given a payment of Rs 135 as daily wage even when jobless for the designated period.

The other remarkable feature of the scheme is not to pay the wages in cash but deposit the money in the bank account of the beneficiary.

The account of each beneficiary would be opened by the authorities at zero- balance account.

The department concerned had organised a training programme for the elected representatives including the sarpanch, panches and the members of the zila parishad regarding the functioning of the scheme.

It was carried out by experts from the Haryana Institute of Rural Development, Karnal, claimed the additional deputy commissioner B.B.Kaushik. But what has been a cause of concern is the uncooperative attitude and reluctance shown by some of the bank branches in the district in opening the zero-balance account.

Admitting the occurrence of such a hurdle the ADC said he had warned the bank officials of a strict disciplinary action in case of such complaints.

While the administrative approval had been given for the scheme to be launched in 90 villages in the first phase, he said work had already started in almost 61 villages. The department has received an amount of Rs. 1.43 crore while funds amounting to Rs 29 lakh have been transferred from the balance left in the previous scheme of Sampooran Gramin Rojgar Yojana (SGRY), which came to an end in March this year.

Meanwhile, the DRDA had spent an amount Rs.13.46 crore on various development projects in the district in the past one year.

The overall success rate in usage of the funds for various centre and state government-sponsored schemes has been pegged at 69.34 per cent.

Out of the total amount of Rs.19.42 crore, the local authorities spent about 13.46 crore in the financial period of 2007-08.

The balance amount of Rs. 2.61 crore got transferred in the budget of 2008-09.



Youth invents solar bike
Sunit Dhawan
Tribune News Service

Jhajjar, July 3
Where there is a will, there is a way - this old adage has been reaffirmed by Attar Singh Ahlawat, a youth of Bhambhewa village in the district. Ahlawat, a small-time electrician, has made an electric bike, which runs on solar energy.

“When I saw an electric-powered bike for the first time, I was fascinated by it,” says Ahlawat, who went to Hisar to get its parts nearly two years ago.

However, the e-bike dealer refused to give him the spare parts. Ahlawat did not lose heart and kept on trying to get the requisite know-how and parts to make an e-bike himself.

His efforts finally bore fruit when a Rohtak-based dealer got an e-bike agency. This dealer arranged the bike parts required by Ahlawat.

Eventually, Ahlawat was successful in making his own battery-driven bike. But then, he was confronted by another problem: acute shortage of electricity in his village.

The e-powered bike ran on a battery, which needed to be charged. But thanks to the long and frequent power cuts, it was not possible for him to charge the battery.

The enterprising youth, however, took it as a challenge and started exploring ways and means to combat the crisis.

One fine day, he thought of taping the immense solar energy for the purpose. He bought some solar panels from a junk-dealer in Delhi and fitted these at his house to generate electricity.

Then, he started using solar power to charge the battery, on which his e-bike runs. And despite being a “jugaad” (crude model), Ahlawat’s e-bike runs quite smoothly.

This young innovator now plans to make a solar-powered car and has already started working on this new project.

“Had he got sufficient resources, he would have made a solar energy-driven car by now,” says an elderly resident of Ahlawat’s village.



Nigam to reintroduce VDS
Raman Mohan
Tribune News Service

Hisar, July 3
The Dakshin Haryana Bijli Vitran Nigam (DHBVN) has decided to reintroduce the Voluntary Disclosure Scheme (VDS) for regularisation of unauthorised extension of load. The scheme will remain in force till July 31 next.

The VDS is meant for domestic, non-domestic, agriculture and industrial consumers in rural as well as urban areas to get unauthorised load regularised without paying any penalty.

Under the scheme, domestic and non-domestic consumers desirous of declaring their unauthorised load voluntarily can make application on "Application and Agreement" (A&A) form giving detail of load to be extended. They are not required to submit any fresh affidavits. The consumers may give an undertaking that they would abide by all terms and conditions for power supply.

For extending the load up to 20 kilowatt (KW), consumers of domestic and non-domestic categories need not submit any test report. They may give a certificate that the wiring for the extended load has been done by an authorised contractor and tested as per the rules. However, for extension of load beyond 20 KW, the consumers will have to submit the test report.

The domestic consumers will have to deposit the Advance Consumption Security (ACS) at new rates, while the non-domestic consumers are required to deposit fixed connection charges also for getting the load regularised. No penalty will be imposed on them. The extended load will be considered as regularised with immediate effect if all formalities are completed.

The farmers can declare the extended load of motors of their tubewell connections by submitting an A&A form. The consumer will submit a test report for the extended load.

The industrial consumers can declare their load by submitting the A&A form along with a revised test report. They would have to deposit the requisite service connection charges for the extended load. In case the extended load causes a change in category, the consumer will be required to declare his contract demand and to complete other formalities necessary for change 
in category.

The extension in load in the case of agriculture and industry categories will be regularised if the existing distribution system can take up the additional load.

However, if the existing system cannot take up the additional load declared by the consumers, then the existing equipment will be augmented by the Nigam after completing necessary formalities.



A pioneer farmer
D.R. Vij


Kurukshetra, July 3
Having a small piece of land for cultivation and increase in production cost of traditional crops has compelled some of the farmers of this district to adopt diversification of crops.

One such farmer, Amandeep, a resident of Jainpur village in Shahabad (Markanda) block, has brought a revolution in the field of agriculture by growing saplings from high quality vegetable seeds. By growing saplings of green chilly, capsicum, cauliflower, tomato, brinjal and cucumber, he has not only encouraged other farmers, but also inspired them to use high quality seeds.

The brain behind the innovative idea is Amandeep’s father, Dr Devender Singh, who retired as Haryana horticulture officer.

He claimed he had earned Rs 3 lakh last season by cultivating the high quality vegetable nursery, which was supplied to the farmers of adjoining villages including Shahabad (Markanda), Surajgarh, Dhadlu and Shahpur.

The input of hard work cannot be ruled out because the traditional crops of wheat and paddy can sustain seasonal heat and cold but to save the vegetable crops from the same, some additional precautionary measures have to be taken, adds Amandeep.

Moreover, in comparison to the demand of traditional crops of wheat and paddy, the demand for vegetable crops has been increasing day-by-day.

But due to a small piece of land for cultivation at the disposal of a small-time farmer and increasing production cost, a farmer cannot earn his livelihood without adopting diversification of crops.



Medicated curtain to curb malaria
Ravinder Saini

Jhajjar, July 3
State health authorities have come up with a novel plan to save the residents of malaria-prone areas from the disease. As per the plan, medicated curtains and bed-nets will be provided to the residents during the forthcoming transmission season.

These chemically-treated curtains and bed-nets would be given free of cost to the residents of those villages which have been declared highly sensitive in this regard. The demand proposals have been received from the district offices of the health department and the supplies are expected to reach the district headquarters by the first week of July.

According to the sources, these curtains would be treated with Delta Methylene chemical, which attracts the mosquitoes and instantly kills those coming close.

"These curtains can be put on the walls of the house. The most important aspect of this mechanism is that it does not have any side-effects," said the district malaria officer, Dr Ishwar Anand Yadav, adding that 17 villages of the district had been declared malaria-sensitive areas.

Dr Yadav maintained that the district office had recently sent a demand proposal to the state health department for getting supply of curtains and nets. It may be pertinent to mention here that till recently, larvicidal fish were being used to keep the population of mosquitoes in check.



Vocational training to provide jobs
Tribune News Service

Yamunanagar, July 3
Ballarpur Industries Limited, in association with the Society for All Round Development (SARD) and CAP (Community and Progress) Foundation, Hyderabad, launched, 'Ek Mauka,' a vocational-training programme to increase employability among youth from underprivileged and disadvantaged sections of the society. The programme is likely to benefit 500 youths. The trained youths would be given assistance in finding placements.

Dr Ashok Kumar, associate vice-president, BILT Unit Shree Gopal, Yamunanagar, inaugurated the centre.

While speaking at a seminar organised by Corporate Social Responsibility, BILT, Dr Kumar stated that the three-month training programme include theoretical and practical session, which will be implemented by SARD.

The participants would be charged Rs 500 for the course. BILT and the CAP Foundation will jointly share the balance amount of Rs 4,000 through USAID (United State Agency for International Development) funding.

BILT, through its CSR programme, will assist the trained participants in seeking suitable placements.



Adult movies flood city cinemas
Manish Sirhindi
Tribune News Service

Panipat, July 3
In their struggle for survival, many cinema halls in the city have chosen to run adult movies on a regular basis. The trend is not difficult to explain and those in the trade reveal that it seems to be the only resort to stay in the business.

An adult film costs only a few thousands in terms of weekly rental, whereas the commercial Bollywood flicks sometimes cost several lakhs. Thus, the earning potential of the adult films is more, said one of the cinema owners.

With a large section of the society being that of labourers, cinema halls find it easy to make good money by running the C-grade movies.

Although the cinema halls have installed hoardings claiming that a ticket for an adult movie would not be issued to minors, the facts are the other way round. Not only college-goers but school children can also be seen evading the public eye after the show is over and look for alternative routes of exit.

A leading psychologist of the city, while commenting on the issue, said the trend was not healthy. "Lack of sex education coupled with hushing up of healthy questions, lead to alternate ways.”

With a boom in the business of adult movies, obscene and vulgar posters can also be seen pasted all over the walls across the city. Residents blame the district authorities for allowing cinema owners to stick obscene posters on public properties. “Obscene posters can be seen pasted on the walls of schools or colleges,” rued a concerned father. The suggestive titles of the films are also a disturbing factor. Kuldip Malik, another resident, said that these titles were not only vulgar but they also vitiated the atmosphere of the surroundings.

One of the cinema owners , on condition of anonymity, said these movies were crowd-pullers. Due to rising costs we have been forced to screen such movies as there is no other way, he claimed.



Spreading ‘gyan’
Satish Seth

Kaithal, July 3
“Gyanjyoti’, a magazine highlighting various features of Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan in Kaithal district, was released by Naveen Jindal, M.P., Kurukshetra, at a function held at the mini secretariat.

The magazine has been prepared by the district administration under the guidance of Vikas Gupta, deputy commissioner, Kaithal, and under the chairmanship of Ramesh Verma, additional deputy commissioner, Kaithal.

It highlights the norms of Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan and gives a comprehensive view of all schemes being implemented for the promotion of education in the age group 6-14 in the district.

ADC Verma said Kaithal was the first district to prepare a magazine for “community awareness” which would be circulated in all village panchayats and 599 government schools.



Citizens’ Grievances
Unfair MBBS entrance structure

Students from the rural and the semi-urban areas demand amendment of rules in the MBBS course entrance structure. They complain that the marks obtained by a student in plus two exams are totally ignored and selection is made only on the basis of rank obtained in the entrance test. They suggest that collective percentage of marks should be considered as a rank for the admission to the MBBS course. The present system only suits the urban students where private coaching facilities are available.

Surinder Singh, Shahabad Markanda

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