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Dense fog hits rail, air traffic
Amritsar/Hoshiarpur, January 1
Thick blanket of fog continues to throw life out of gear, with rail and air traffic getting severly disrupted. Visibility in the holy city was very poor in the morning today and by evening it got reduced to around 10 meters.

Probe ordered into suicide attempt by naib-tehsildar
Patiala, January 1
Shock after shock in her already shattered life, no salary for over 15 years and alleged indifference of her superiors has forced 50-year-old 1984 anti-Sikh riot-hit widow Jaspal Kaur to attempt suicide. Moved by the plight of Jaspal, naib-tehsildar (agrarian) having charge of Ludhiana and Sangrur districts, Patiala Divisional Commissioner Jasbir Singh Bir has ordered a probe into the circumstances that forced her to attempt suicide.

CM mum on Kanwaljit’s remarks
Jalandhar, January 1
Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal has chosen to keep mum on the virtual political upheaval created by the statement of Cooperation Minister Kanwaljit Singh wherein he has said SAD chief Sukhbir Badal would have to prove his mettle during the parliamentary polls.



A farmer on the way back home in the backdrop of last sunset of 2008
A farmer on the way back home in the backdrop of last sunset of 2008. Tribune photo: Malkiat Singh

Dr Pramod to head reforms commission
Jalandhar, January 1
Dr Pramod Kumar will be the chairman of the Administrative Reforms Commission, Punjab. Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal, who was here today, gave his approval to the name of Dr Pramod Kumar for the post.

Delay in payment of subsidy
PSEB asks panel to approve interest expenses
Chandigarh, January 1
The Punjab State Electricity Board (PSEB) has now asked the Punjab State Electricity Regulatory Commission (PSERC) to approve the interest expenses incurred by it on raising loans for working capital requirements due to delayed payment of subsidy by the state government.

Punjab to have single emergency number
Chandigarh, January 1
The Punjab government signed an MoU with the Emergency Management and Research Institute (EMRI), Hyderabad, today to provide free response services to the state.

Punjab Health Minister Laxmi Kanta Chawla sits in the EMRI van after signing an MoU in Sector 34 in Chandigarh on Thursday. Tribune photo: Parvesh Chauhan
Punjab Health Minister Laxmi Kanta Chawla sits in the EMRI van after signing an MoU in Sector 34 in Chandigarh


Service panel members in race for Cong ticket
Jalandhar, January 1
At least two members of the Punjab Public Service Commission (PPSC) are keen on the Lok Sabha elections. They are Dr Ajaib Singh and Dr Satwant Singh Mohi. Congress insiders say Dr Ajaib Singh is interested to contest the elections from Sangrur as party candidate.


Unions want Rs 5,000 per month minimum wages
Sangrur, January 1
Activists of the Centre of Indian Trade Unions (CITU), led by district president of the CITU Ram Singh Sohian, today took out a march and staged a dharna at the district administrative complex here to put pressure on the state government to issue notification, regarding minimum wages of the labourers and workers as Rs 5,000 per month instead of Rs 3,200 per month.

‘Need for milk-chilling facility in villages’
Chandigarh, January 1
The Punjab Farmers Commission may not stand for increased organic farming of wheat and paddy but it has called for producing milk, meat and eggs without any pesticide or antibiotic residue in a report on “Organic farming, its necessity and how far it can go”, which is due for submission to the state government.

Amritsar Vision Paper-2009
World-class varsity, check post at Wagah top projects
Amritsar, January 1
The setting up of a Rs 1,250-crore world-class university, Rs 130-crore Integrated Check Post (ICP) at the Attari-Wagah border and the expansion of the Amritsar airport, figure prominently in the Vision Paper for 2009, prepared by the district administration.

Furnace that saves wood in cremation
Amritsar, January 1
Shyam Sharma, a retired mechanical engineer of the Public Works Department (PWD), has taken upon himself the task to minimise the use of fuel wood in cremations. A resident of Yol Camp in Kangra district, he was a member of the team, comprising Indian and German experts, which designed and developed an improved furnace to cremate bodies.

Shyam Sharma, former mechanical engineer of the Public Works Department. Photo: Vishal Kumar
Shyam Sharma, former mechanical engineer of the Public Works Department

Tributes paid to Mumbai terror victims
Patiala, January 1
Rising above parties, many political leaders from the SAD, BJP, Congress and city residents gathered yesterday at Baradari Garden, Patiala, to offer prayers to the victims of the Mumbai terror attacks and the police, Army and commandos who sacrificed their lives in the line of duty.

People pay tributes to victims of Mumbai terror attacks at Baradari Garden in Patiala on Wednesday. Tribune photo: Gagan Aulakh

People pay tributes to victims of Mumbai terror attacks at Baradari Garden in Patiala

New Year celebrations turn sour
Fatehgarh Sahib, January 1
New Year celebrations turned gloomy when three people got killed in three separate accidents and eight others received serious injuries in the wee hours today. All the three accidents took place near village Naulakha on Sirhind-Patiala road.

909 panchayat secys to be regularised
Chandigarh, January 1
The Punjab cabinet today approved the regularisation of 909 panchayat secretaries whose selection was terminated on December 10, 2002. The cabinet also gave its ex-post facto approval for the recruitment of 54 medical officers (specialist) for the Department of Health and Family Welfare and taking out of the purview of the Punjab Public Service Commission.

Mission disputes farm panel’s claim
Bathinda, January 1
Reacting sharply to the claim of the Punjab State Farmers Commission that organic farming could be counter productive; the Punjab Kheti Virasat Mission (KVM) today described it as a “blatant attack” on all initiatives working for ecological sustainability of the state and has announced that a debate at the national level would be organised on the issue.


Another doctor couple booked
Sangrur, January 1
In connection with performing an ‘illegal’ medical termination of pregnancy (MTP) on a pregnant woman, one more case has been registered by the police during the past three days in the district. The case was registered two days ago against a Khanauri-based GAMS doctor couple.

Indian trying to enter Pak arrested
Amritsar, January 1
The BSF held an Indian on the zero line as he was trying to cross over to Pakistan yesterday. The person managed to cross the Customs gate. Sources in the BSF said the person had disclosed his identity as Tari of Mandala village in Patiala.



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