P U N J A B    S T O R I E S


Cabinet approves land-pooling scheme
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 21
The state cabinet today approved a land-pooling scheme under which landowners will be eligible to get developed land in addition to compensation at market rates in case their land is acquired by the state.

Disclosing this here today, Chief Minister’s media adviser Harcharan Bains said the Cabinet also gave approval for summoning of the fifth session of the Vidhan Sabha from September 4 to 10.

The Cabinet also reviewed the flood-relief measures and appreciated the role of Army.

Approval was given for the construction of a world-class cricket stadium at Bathinda through competitive private participation over 25 acres.

The Cabinet also gave green light to the revival and filling up of 100 posts of medical officers (general) and 147 posts of specialists through direct recruitment to be conducted by the Punjab Public Service Commission. It was approved to fill 21 vacant posts of chemical examiner, public analyst and assistant chemical examiner by direct recruitment in the food drugs and excise laboratories in the state. Apart from this, the Cabinet also approved to re-employ the willing medical/dental/ Ayurveda teachers who had retired since 2003 in view of a grim situation in the state health sciences institutions in which about 107 posts have been lying vacant for past the several years.

The Cabinet approved the transfer of nine out of 13 properties of the Punjab Tourism Development Corporation (PTDC) to be taken over on disinvestment to the Department of Tourism on lease through the Punjab Infrastructure Development Board in a transparent manner. The proceeds accrued on account of lease of these properties would go to the Punjab Heritage and Tourism Promotion Board.

In order to improve the VAT collection, the Cabinet approved to engage the services of a consultant, Price Water House Coopers.


Loan waiver for flood-hit farmers
Tribune News Service

It’s cool at Bhakra, Pong

The BBMB has said the situation at both Bhakra and Pong dams was completely under control since inflow into both dams has decreased considerably.

Chandigarh, August 21
Punjab has incurred an infrastructure-cum-crop loss of Rs 530 crore due to incessant rain and flooding in the state, besides losing 22 lives, according to a preliminary survey.

According to the survey by the Revenue Department, as many as 75,000 to 80,000 acres of crop have been destroyed. While a major portion of this is paddy crop, there was loss to maize and cotton also in some parts of the state.

At present 64 villages still remain marooned in Ferozepur district where 138 villages were inundated with floodwaters. As many as 183 villages in Jalandhar, 128 in Kapurthala, 85 in Ropar, 40 in Moga and 30 in Taran Tarn were affected by flood waters.

At least 2,400 houses were affected due to torrential rain with 1,800 houses being completely damaged. According to the Revenue Department preliminary estimates indicated there had been a loss of Rs 210 crore in Jalandhar, Rs 125 crore in Ferozepur, Rs 102 crore in Kapurthala, Rs 50 crore in Taran Tarn, Rs 25 crore in Moga, Rs 9 crore in Hoshiarpur and Rs 7.5 crore in Gurdaspur. It said figures for losses suffered in Ropar district were still to be collected.

Meanwhile, Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal while addressing mediapersons here today, said Cooperative Societies would waive the loan taken by farmers in the affected areas. He said it was also decided to let these farmers pay their domestic electricity bills at a later stage.

Badal said Rs 1,500 to Rs 2,000 relief per acre being offered at present was very less and the Centre should rather compensate the farmers for their loss.

He said he would demand a compensation of Rs 15,000 per acre. He said the state on its part would give Rs 3,000 per acre to the farmers, besides the relief given by the Centre.

When asked whether the state did not have a disaster management team in place and that the Irrigation Department did not take up flood protection works, he said farmers weakened the bandhs due to placement of pipes for irrigation purposes. When asked why money was not released for flood protection works, he chose to divert the question.


Stink fills affected areas
Kulwinder Sandhu
Tribune News Service

Akbarwala (Ferozepur), August 21
Stink in accumulated floodwaters has pervaded almost all affected areas. Thousands of people were complaining of infection and other complications.

The Health Department has divided the flood-hit areas of Ferozepur district into 18 zones. It is working round-the-clock to provide medical relief doorstep with the help of the Army. Each zone has one medical team comprising a doctor, pharmacist, nurse, lab technician and a health worker, besides sanitary inspectors and malaria workers.

The chief medical officer, Dr Balbir Singh, said the stationed and mobile medical teams on August 20 had provided medicines to 1,222 people in the Makhu, 212 in Mamdot, 61 in Fazilka, 420 in Zira and 151 in Jalalabad areas. The check-up programme started from August 16 and since then more than 7,500 people had been provided free medicines, he said.

Dr G.S. Dhillon, senior doctor supervising the whole operation in the Makhu area, said the worst affected villages were Akbarwala, Kussuwala and its adjoining settlements. “More than 80 per cent of the population living in this area have reported skin infections, fungal infections and contact dermatitis”, he said.

More than 700 people had taken shelter in tarpaulin huts. The Army had deputed one doctor along with other staff and provided a motor boat to reach to the people stuck on the rooftops of their houses.

Senior medical officer of Kassoana Madan Mohan said people should avoid coming in contact with floodwater.


Border fence damaged, agencies alert
Naveen S. Garewal
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 21
Security agencies in the sate have sounded an alert to check possible intrusion after the recent floods damaged barbed wire fencing at several places along the border. Sources said at least 12 BSF observation posts had been submerged, forcing the BSF to move border observation posts (BoPs) several meters back. The BSF has pressed motorboat service to patrol the area.

Most of the damaged caused to the fencing has been in Ferozepur district. Reports reaching the state headquarters said the situation in the district was serious, but under control.

Talking to mediapersons, DIG, BSF, M.L. Wasan said 56 villages of Ferozepur district had been flooded by the Sutlej.

Meanwhile, state government sources said special girdawri’s would be conducted as soon as the water receded. According to estimates, the floods have damaged over 70,000 acres of paddy, maize and vegetables. Meanwhile, officials said inflow into dams in the state has reduced.

Meanwhile, the Cabinet reviewed the flood-relief measures and appreciated the role of the Army in this hour of crisis.


Army, admn work round-the-clock to save Fazilka
Praful Chander Nagpal

Fazilka, August 21
It is only with round-the-clock efforts of the Army and civil administration during the past 48 hours that the embankment of the Kawanwali bandh has been strengthened and this town has been saved from ravaging floodwaters, observed Brig K.K. Sinha, who is monitoring flood-control measures at the border village of Kanwanwali Pattan, about 10 km from here.

According to sources, the Hussainiwala headworks, near Ferozepur, released 70,000 cusec feet of water per second yesterday. A part of the embankment got eroded due to the heavy release into the Sutlej. Brigadier Sinha said an engineering company from Sriganganar, comprising 500 jawans, worked continuously for more than 48 hours.

Tehsildar Subhash Khattak said Teja Rohela village, which was situated along zero line, had been inundated from all sides. Residents of nearby villages of Chack Rohela, Nejewali and Mahatam Nagar have been alerted.

The jawans are raising a parallel bundh behind the existing Kanwanwali Pattan bundh.


Amarnath Land Row
Thousands court arrest
Tribune Reporters

Amritsar, August 21
Some unruly elements in the Hindu organisations, including BJP cadre, tried to damage historic Muslim shrines near the town Hall in the walled city today even as the BJP leaders and their supporters, including the saffron parities were moving in a procession to court arrest in support of the agitation by the Amarnath Sangharsh Samiti in Jammu.

However, senior police officials and BJP leaders immediately intervened and controlled the situation from going out of hand. The police had stepped up the vigil outside all Muslim shrines.

Before courting arrest some mischievous elements in the party stoned the iron grill of masjid and damaged the gate.

Among those who courted arrest included MLA Anil Joshi, mayor Shwet Malik, former health minister Dr Baldev Raj Chawla, Rajinder Mohan Singh Chhinna, Dinesh Sharma, BJP councillors and members of the VHP Bajrang Dal, Shiv Sena, Dharam Jagran Samanvya Vibhag and Divya Jyoti Jagran Sansthan.

While expressing resentment over the attempted attack on the Muslim shrines BJP MP Navjot Singh Sidhu asserted that he condemns all types of violence and added that there are peaceful means to resolve all issues. He added that he believed in universal brotherhood and the whole world was his country and entire mankind his brothers and to do good was his religion. He said the matter should be solved through talks within the constitutional framework of the country, which provide enough leverage for all parties to share their views and come up with amicable solution.

Earlier, the procession started from Durgiana temple and marched towards town hall via Hall Bazaar where they burnt the Pakistani flag. According to the police spokesman, many leaders and workers were taken into the police custody and were later released.

Sangrur: Hundreds of activists of the BJP, the RSS, the Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP), the Bajrang Dal, and the Amarnath Yatra Sangharsh Samiti today presented themselves for court arrest at the district administrative complex here. After about three hours they were let off.

BJP district president Jatinder Kalra, who was among the protesters, said their struggle would continue till the return of land to the Amarnath Shrine Board by the Jammu and Kashmir government.

Gurdaspur: Thousands of activists of the BJP and various other Hindu organisations today got themselves arrested in this town to lodge their protest here.

The activists of the BJP and other sister organisations assembled at the Hanuman Chowk here and marched towards the SDM court under the leadership of party MLAs of Gurdaspur district.

The activist entered into heated exchange with the police when they broke barricade erected around the SDM court. They were arrested by the police and bundled into buses, parked near the court by the police authorities.

They were freed after they were taken to the grain market area of this town.

Tarn Taran: As many as 60 activists of different Hindu organisations protesting against the Amarnath land row in support of the Amarnath Sangharsh Samiti today presented themselves for court arrest.

Santokh Singh of the RSS led the Hindu activists.

Before presenting themselves for the court arrest the Hindu activists gathered at local Madan Mohan temple from where they marched to the DC office where the police made them sit in a bus and took them to Chabal where they were released after some time.


Land Scandal
Probe report this Assembly session
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 21
Punjab Vidhan Sabha’s special committee, headed by the Parliamentary Secretary Harish Rai Dhanda, that was asked to probe certain issues related to the multi-crore Amritsar Improvement Trust land scandal, will submit its report in the House during the coming session of the state Assembly expected to start on September 4.

The committee was asked to seek information from the former Chief Minister Capt Amarinder Singh and former local bodies minister Chowdhary Jagjit Singh with regard to the improvement trust land. Capt Amarinder Singh had appeared before the committee in the beginning of its hearings but later on he did not turn up before the committee. He had asked for time to go through certain documents related to the case.

Dhanda said that committee was preparing the final draft of the report and it would present all “facts” related to the case before the House through the report. However, he refused to disclose the contents of the report. He said that the committee would submit the report and further action would be taken by the House on it. “The Committee’s job is to present facts before the House”, he added.

He said Amarinder Singh was provided an opportunity to go through the relevant record. It appears that the report of the committee will generate a lot of heat in the House. There are several young Congress MLAs who are staunch supporters of Amarinder Singh.



Separate SGPC
Sonia trying to divide Sikhs: Sukhbir
Kulwinder Sandhu
Tribune News Service

Makhu (Ferozepur), August 21
The SAD today warned the Congress against interference in the religious matters of the Sikh community while alleging that Congress chief Sonia Gandhi was trying to divide the Sikh community in the country.

SAD president Sukhbir Singh Badal said he and his father Chief Minister Prakash Singh Badal would meet Prime Minister Manmohan Singh tomorrow to request him to stop his party from interfering in the internal matters of the Sikhs. He was here to address a workers’ meeting of the SAD to mobilise aid for the flood victims.

The Congress-led government of Haryana proposes to constitute a separate gurdwara parbandhak committee.

Sukhbir alleged that the Haryana government was making the separate committee under the instructions of Sonia Gandhi. His party would hold a Sikh rally at Karnal on August 30, which would not only be a warning but also a wake-up call for the Congress to stop interfering in the religious matters of the minorities.

He said there was no proposal under consideration of the SGPC to change its president. There were rumours that the SAD may influence SGPC members to elect Raghujit Singh Virk from Karnal as their president in the coming elections.

You are late, SSP tells scribes

The district administration of Moga allowed only select mediapersons to cover the visit of Sukhbir Badal at Madaarpur in Moga district. A section of the journalists from print media and electronic media were not allowed by the police to go to the spot. Even as Sukhbir was yet to arrive at the spot, SSP Ashok Bath told mediapersons “you are late and cannot be allowed to go there”.


Don’t pass the buck, says Bir Devinder
Sarbjit Dhaliwal
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 21
Rather than passing on the buck for their failures to the Congress, the leadership of the SAD and SGPC should satisfy the Sikhs of Haryana’s demand for a separate gurdwara management committee for the state.

Stating this here today, the chief spokesman of the Punjab Congress, Bir Devinder Singh today said the Congress president Sonia Gandhi had always endeavoured for religious harmony. No one would believe the baseless and false allegations of interference in the Sikh religious affairs levelled against her. He said, “This is not a political issue. It has been raised by the members of Sikh community from Haryana with the government of Haryana. The Congress has nothing to do with it. The SAD and BJP, should know that the proper forum to address this issue was the SGPC. The SAD should be aware that just 10 days after the Tara Singh and Nehru pact, the general House of the SGPC, summoned at Amritsar on April 22, 1959, attended by 154 members of the SGPC had unanimously passed a resolution rejecting the Nehru-Tara Singh pact. Prem Singh Lalpura, the then President of the SGPC, presided over the meeting. Therefore it was irrelevant now to refer to it.”


Ravi Inder bats for gurdwara panel
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 21
While the Akali Dal (1920) has openly supported the demand for a separate gurdwara management committee for Haryana, the SAD (Amritsar) has stated that Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal and his son Sukhbir Singh Badal were raising objections to the proposed committee without presenting any logical argument on this sensitive issue.

President of SAD (Amritsar) Simranjit Singh Mann said the Badals were inciting a civil war among Sikhs on the issue. He alleged that the SGPC had failed to perform its duties.

He said it was wrong on the part of the Badals to oppose the separated gurdwara committee for Haryana. He alleged the SAD was misusing the money collected at gurdwaras and Sikhs would never like that a non-baptised Akali leader would distribute tickets to contest the elections of the SGPC.


Haryana Panel
Pro and anti groups set for showdown
Jangveer Singh
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 21
Pro and anti groups for a separate Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) in Haryana are set for a showdown with both deciding to hold public rallies at Karnal on August 30. Meanwhile, Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal aims to up the pressure on the Centre by leading a party delegation to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh tomorrow while the Haryana SGPC members demanding a separate committee for the state today claimed that the Haryana Chief Minister had assured them they would get their “right”.

Both, Badal as well as Didar Singh Nalvi of the self styled Haryana Ad-hoc SGPC Committee have claimed that they would hold their respective rallies peacefully and that there was no possibility of deterioration of law and order due to this showdown. While the SAD is holding its rally at the Urban Estate, the Ad-hoc Committee is holding its rally at Dera Sewa, Kalandari Gate. Both rallies are expected to attract large crowds. The Ad-hoc Committee today claimed that the rally organised by them would be the biggest gathering of Sikhs in history.

Badal said the creation of a separate committee was a deliberate attempt by the Congress to weaken the SGPC. He claimed that a party delegation would call upon the Prime Minister tomorrow and “advise him to not to allow this to happen as the country was already in dire straits”. He also claimed that the Prime Minister alone could not be responsible for the move, and alleged that UPA chairperson Sonia Gandhi must have given directions for the same.

Badal also claimed that there was no logic for a separate committee, saying “tomorrow you will ask for a separate committee for the ‘Majha” and other areas”. He also claimed democratic norms were not being followed with the Haryana government proposing to make an act to establish the committee even when the majority of the Sikhs of Haryana did not want it. He also asserted that former Prime Minister Jawahar Lal Nehru had assured Master Tara Singh that there would be no change in the SGPC unless three fourth of the members thought otherwise.

Ad-hoc Committee leader Didar Singh Nalvi said Badal was quoting an assurance which did not have any legal sanctity. On the other hand Section 72 of the Punjab Reorganisation Act made a provision for a separate SGPC in the new state. “Badal sahib has sowed the seeds of a separate SGPC by insisting on a separate state for the Sikhs,” he added.

Nalvi also called for filing of the Chatha committee report on the response of Sikhs regarding formation of the proposed committee. He said lakhs of Sikhs had submitted affidavits demanding formation of a separate committee while no affidavits had been received opposing the move. “How can Badal claim a majority of the Sikhs in Haryana are with him,” he said adding that the coming rally by the Sikhs of Haryana would expose this myth also.


Cops fire rubber bullets at farm labourers
Rajay Deep
Tribune News Service

Lambi/Bathinda, August 21
Eighteen activists of the Punjab Khet Mazdoor Union, including women, sustained injuries when the police fired rubber bullets, tear gas shells and used water cannons to stop them from moving towards Badal, the native village of Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal.

The landless farmers were marching towards the village to protest the non-acceptance of their long-pending demands. They were demanding land for dumping waste in Aulakh village, financial help for families affected by militancy in Fatoohiwala village, plots for the landless and possession of the allotted plots.

The leaders alleged that Badal had promised them on April 14 to accept all their demands but nothing had been done in this regard. The protesters, who had started their march from Lambi, faced police barricades on the road leading to Badal village. They were intercepted at Kheowali village.

The police first resorted to lathi charge. When the protesters did not relent, it used water cannons and later fired rubber bullets, injured a number of agitators.

Eight of the injured were referred to the civil hospital, Bathinda, while 10 were admitted to the civil hospital, Lambi.

Lachman Singh Sevewala, general secretary of the union, said: “We had minor demands that would have cost the government around Rs 1,15,000 only. We had met senior officials of the district administration, but except for assurances, we got nothing”.

“We had already sent a memorandum regarding the two-day protest to the Chief Minister through the deputy commissioner, Muktsar. The SHO of Lambi, the DSP and the tehsildar had held a meeting with us on Wednesday. They sought the postponement of the agitation for one month, which we had turned down,” he added.

Muktsar DC Vikas Garg said: “The situation took an ugly turn when the protesters tried to break the cordon. We have been making efforts to fulfil their demands, but they do not cooperate with the administration.”

Meanwhile, the Bharati Kisan Union (Ekta Ugrahan), Lok Morcha Punjab Sudents Union (Shaheed Randhawa) and many other organisations condemned the incident.


Sangrur MC polls stayed
Tribune News Service

Sangrur, August 21
Punjab and Haryana High Court yesterday stayed fresh election for the posts of president and vice-president of the Sangrur Municipal Council (MC).

A former president of Sangrur MC Mahesh Kumar Meshi said yesterday a plea had been filed in the high court by Harbans Lal, who was elected president along with two vice- presidents of the Sangrur MC at a meeting of the council, held on July 23 last. He said this meeting had been attended by nine Congress municipal councillors, Congress MLA from Sangrur and one SAD MC Harbans Lal who on that day joined the Congress. The Sangrur MC had 21 elected councillors.

Following opinion of Punjab advocate-general, relating to election of president and two vice- presidents of the Sangrur MC, the Department of Local Government, Punjab, had declared the election of Harbans Lal as president and election of Jaswinder Singh and Ravi Chawla as vice-presidents of Sangrur MC as void.

The advocate-general had stated as per Section 27 of the Punjab Municipal Act, 1911, read along with Section 3 of the Punjab Municipal (President and Vice-Presidents) Election Rules 1994, at least one half of the total number of elected councillors could constitute the quorum necessary for first meeting of the MC. As any 10 elected councillors were present, therefore, the valid quorum was not fulfilled therefore, the meeting proceedings are invalid.


E-stamping soon
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 21
In a significant move to revamp the system of collection of stamp duty and plug the leakage of revenue through modern procedures, the Punjab Government will soon introduce e-stamping in the state. A decision to this effect was taken here at a meeting chaired by Punjab Chief Minister M Parkash Singh Badal after a detailed presentation made by Arvinder Singh Bains, director land records settlement and consolidation and land acquisition. Badal said the e-stamping system would be applicable for all non-judicial stamp duty payments and was likely to be launched as a pilot project from the major cities of Punjab.

He hoped that e-stamping, an excellent example of how technology could be used for the benefit of common man, would be a frontrunner in the upcoming e-governance projects.

The government would soon ink an agreement with Stock Holding Corporation of India Limited (SHCIL) to launch and implement e-stamping across the state. Taking part in the deliberations, financial commissioner revenue Romilla Dubey pointed out that the e-stamping system implemented by SHCIL, was a web-based application, giving the public the convenience of paying stamp duty to the government without undergoing the hassles associated with stamp paper and without the risk of losing revenue.

A specified printer could print the certificate of stamp duty or the e-stamp once the software application receives the document details.


Speaker-Finance Dept Row
Kahlon for written explanation
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 21
The confrontation between the speaker of the Punjab Vidhan Sabha and the Punjab finance department does not seem to be over as speaker Nirmal Singh Kahlon refused to accept oral explanation from the department on the delay in approving his trip for a speakers’ conference in Malaysia from August 1 to 10.

Principal secretary, finance, Dilsher Singh Kalha, appeared before the speaker following a privilege notice to him, but Kahlon, after making Kalha wait for over half an hour, asked him to submit a reply in writing by August 26.

The speaker in July had asked the Finance Department to release money for his trip to Malaysia for attending speakers’ conference from August 1. But the department raised certain objections delaying the file. When the file was cleared, it was late for Kahlon to attend the conference. He in turn issued a privilege notice to Kalha.

Finance minister Manpreet Badal has already stated that the file was delayed in his office due to some technical reason. But Kahlon wants to know the reasons.

Meanwhile, there is resentment among officials over the way Kalha was summoned and “humiliated”. Officers say the matter of delay in clearing the file was an administrative matter and had no reason to issue a privilege notice to the officer concerned. The matter, they say, should have ended after the finance minister had stated that the delay had taken place in his office “due to technical reasons”.


No clearance of bills by treasuries
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 21
The Punjab government has suspended the clearance of bills by treasuries. Officials of the government said in Punjab Secretariat on Tuesday that the clearance of bills had been stopped following a verbal order of a senior state Treasury Department officer. The clearance of bills is suspended to avoid financial crisis.

However, Finance minister Manpreet Singh Badal said there was no instruction to any treasury in the state to suspend the payment of bills in any manner.


Private practice by govt docs opposed
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 21
Senior doctors of the Punjab Civil Medical Service Association (PCMS) have opposed the suggestion to allow private practice to government doctors in any form, saying this will affect the healthcare available in government hospitals.

The association categorically told health secretary, T.R.Sarangal, at a meeting recently that no doctor would be liable to come to attend any emergency case in hospital after duty hours if he did private practice, as he would be busy attending his own private patients to compensate for the loss of non-practising allowance (NPA). Instead, the organisation wanted the present system of the NPA to continue on the pattern of the Union government and the Armed Forces.

Association state general secretary D.C.Sharma said they had asked the secretary, health, to restore the NPA of 40 senior PCMS doctors of the ranks of deputy director, joint director and director health services, that had been arbitrarily withdrawn with effect from 2003 while framing new service rules of the integrated PCMS-I cadre.

Sharma said before 2006, all PCMS doctors, numbering about 4,000, were getting NPA, but it was then suddenly withdrawn in case of 40 PCMS officers of the ranks of deputy directors/civil surgeons/joint directors and directors of health on the plea that it had been omitted in the revised PCMS-I service rules of 2003.

The association leader said this omission had caused a loss of salary to the tune of Rs 12,000 per month, besides loss of retirement benefits. He said because of this senior medical officers had refused to accept the promotions to the ranks of civil surgeon/deputy director.

Sharma claimed that the government had been giving a step-motherly treatment to its government doctors for several years. The government granted dearness pay and resultant benefits to all its employees, except doctors, on the pattern of the Union government with effect from April 2004. He said this was causing a loss of salary of up to Rs 5,000 per month to 4,000 PCMS doctors.


Godrej selects 37 engg students
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 21
All big companies continue to look towards Punjab and other states in this region to make recruitment of students for various jobs from engineering colleges. Godrej, one of the largest engineering and consumer products manufacturing company of the country, recruited 37 students during a joint campus placement drive held today at Chandigarh Engineering College, Landran.

Good number of students from 12 engineering colleges of Punjab, Haryana and Himachal Pradesh, pursuing BTech in mechanical, electronics, communication and civil engineering, participated in the drive.

Students securing 60 per cent throughout their academics were eligible for the drive.

Satnam Singh Sandhu, chairman, and Rashpal Singh Dhaliwal, president, Chandigarh Group of Colleges, expressed their satisfaction on the outcome of the drive and said the result of preparing the students through proper counselling and guidance for placement interview in addition to their curriculum have borne fruits.


State to get 4 lakh tonnes of DAP fertiliser
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 21
The Centre has assured the state government of the supply of 3.50 lakh tonnes of DAP fertiliser by October-end. Besides, the state will get about 50,000 tones of the DAP fertiliser from other sources.

This was disclosed by financial commissioner (development) R.S. Sandhu here yesterday. Sandhu had attended a high-level meeting in this connection in Delhi.

The sowing of the wheat would begin in the first week of November. Sandhu, Financial Commissioner( Development). Sandhu had attended a high level meeting in Delhi.

Sandhu said last year the state government had arranged 4.90 lakh tonnes of DAP fertiliser for state farmers. This year, the government has decided to make arrange 5.50 lakh tonnes of fertiliser with area under wheat crop expected to increase.


Farmers urged to take up commercial crops
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, August 20
Punjab Agriculture Minister Sucha Singh Langah today advised the farming community of the state to sow different crops recommended by the Punjab Agriculture University (PAU) and go for commercial crops other than wheat and paddy. Langah said there was a great scope for cultivation of edible oilseed crops as India was importing edible oils in large quantity. Urging farmers to grow vegetables as the neighbouring state Jammu and Kashmir and the military establishments would prove good marketing areas.

Langah said certain parts of the state was very conducive for fruits and flowers cultivation, which had great commercial value these days.


Rally against privatisation
Tribune News Service

Amritsar, August 21
The Joint Platform of Mass Organisation comprising various Communist parties and farmers organised a protest rally against the state and Central governments for its anti-people policies, besides gheraoing the residence of Cabinet minister Gulzar Singh Ranike here yesterday.

Addressing the gathering, Rattan Singh Randhawa, spokesman, Jamhoori Kisan Union, and other leaders lashed out at the governments for privatising public sector undertakings. They said the government had also failed to control inflation, thus putting the common man in financial constraints. The government had also failed to announce minimum support price of Rs 1,000 for paddy crop, thus forcing farmers to commit suicide.


SDM's reader held taking bribe
Tribune News Service

Ropar, August 21
Ropar SDM’s reader Nirmal Singh was caught taking bribe of Rs 10,000 from a farmer Harinder Singh, resident of village Doom Chheri today.

In his complaint to the vigilance burearu, Harinder Singh told the police that his 3.5 acres of land had been acquired by the government for the Ludhiana-Chandigarh railway line. For this, he had already been given compensation of Rs 54 lakh in the first installment, Rs 13.48 lakh in the second and today the reader Nirmal Singh was to give him third cheque of Rs 89,839.

Nirmal Singh asked for Rs 20,000 as bribe from Harinder Singh in lieu of the third cheque. The matter was settled at Rs 10,000 about which Harinder Singh informed the vigilance bureau. DSP, vigilance, Banarsi Dass caught Nirmal Singh red-handed while accepting Rs 10,000.

A case has been registered under the Prevention of Corruption Act.


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