Nishan-e-Sikhi tower - A ray of hope for youth
Varinder Walia
Tribune News Service

Amritsar, January 27
Keeping in view the falling standards of education in Punjab and loss of life values elsewhere, the Nishan-e-Sikhi Charitable Trust under the patronage of the Baba Sewa Singh Kaar Sewa, Khadoor Sahib, thought out to provide attractive venues to students, teachers, preachers, professionals, sports people and the general public in the walk of life.

The tower under construction is in a four-acre land and is financially supported with donations by Thakral family and Sikh sangat. It will provide a bouquet of religious education, spiritual awareness, cultural understanding, historic information, vocational knowledge, national cohesion and entertainment options.

The exhibits and contents already prepared for museum and other directorates will be interesting and of great educative value in multiple fields to the competitors, researchers and other visitors.

In all, there will be eight directorates in the eight-story tower. A team of professionals is on the job to turn the projects into reality.

Encouraged with the successful adventure of building up the future of progeny, it was further planned to erect the multi-storey educational centre with the name “Nishan-e-Sikhi” to prepare and help the youth in the different fields to compete in the fast moving world.

Khadoor Sahib is sanctified town now in district Tarn Taran. It was visited by eight Sikh Gurus. Gurmukhi alphabet was modified here by Guru Angad Dev who opened the first school of Gurmukhi lipi and started a planned campaign against drugs at this place.

To enhance the educational vision, Guru Angad Dev Multimedia Sikh Museum, first of its kind in the world, was set up by Dr Raghbir Singh Bains, social activist, at Khadur Sahib during the fifth centennial celebrations of the parkash utsav of Guru Angad Dev in 2004. Robotic and touch screen technology was used to educate masses about the Sikh religion, history, culture, philosophy and the Sikh way of life.

The projects scheduled for the Nishan-e-Sikhi tower have been planned very carefully and are expected to provide resources for educationists, learners and professionals to help better plan for the future of education in enhancing the job orientation and life values.



Parking of trains on platform causes hardship to passengers
Neeraj Bagga
Tribune News Service

Amritsar, January 27
Prolonged parking of the Shatabdi Express and Swaran Shatabdi on platform No 1 was causing untold hardships to commuters in general and old, infirm and aged in particular.

According to daily passengers, the Swaran Shatabdi remained parked in platform No 1 after arrival from Delhi at 1.15 pm till 5 pm when it again departs for Delhi.

While Shatabdi reaches at 10.15 pm from Delhi and leaves for the same destination at 5 am. However, for nearly seven hours it is parked there.

The daily passengers  preferring anonymity said earlier trains used to be taken to yard and other trains were allowed to alight passengers.

However, currently those trains were halting at platform Nos 3, 4 and 5, they added. They said novel practice might have offered ease and convenience to railway officials but it was full of great difficulty and hardship for passengers.

Helpless passengers, especially old, handicapped and women, carrying their luggage have to walk to other platforms to catch a train.

Located in front of the entrance, platform No 1 is easily accessible for any passenger.

For this reason the Shan-e-Punjab, Hirakund and several other trains could not reach platform No 1.

Meanwhile, all major facilities and offices of the Railways are also located on the platform.

Waiting halls, toilet for handicapped, bathrooms, ticket widows, inquiry and platform ticket window are housed on the same platform.

Meanwhile, a group of daily passengers here today protested for being fined for travelling in sleeper class coaches. They said they were forced to travel in the sleeper classes following overcrowding in the general coaches.

They said a majority of them were short-distance travellers. Besides, a number of them were students as well. They also alleged that the railway staff  treated them shabbily though they travel daily on valid passes.

Divisional traffic manager Manjit Singh Bhullar said due to technical reasons and cleaning purpose the trains were being allowed to park at platform No 1.

According to him, an operational problem in yard coupled with high volume of trains, the trains were not taken to yard as it was used to be done earlier.

Besides, apparatus for cleaning the trains was available at the same platform where they arrive.



CM leads state to remember freedom fighters, martyrs
Our Correspondent

Amritsar, January 27
Patriotic fervour and gaiety marked the Republic Day celebrations throughout the city where many functions were held to remember the freedom fighters, martyrs and leaders who had laid down their lives for the independence of the country.

All the institutions, political parties and several NGOs organised functions to solemnly pledge to fight against the anti-national forces.

Meanwhile, a cultural programme, including bhangra, giddha, group dance and PT show presented by students of various local schools and colleges regaled the audience at Guru Nanak Dev Stadium where Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal unfurled the National Flag. The performance of gatka by Akal Purkh Ki Fauj made the audience spellbound. As many as 14 tableaux from various departments depicted the on-going developmental activities of the state government.

Former Congress mayor Sunil Datti organised a special Republic Day function at Khandwala on the GT Road, near Chheharta, where thousands of people gathered to pay homage to the martyrs who brought freedom to the country. Addressing the rally he came down heavily on the present SAD-BJP government. He said no development projects had been initiated in the state and the power scenario was grim. Every common man had to face eight to 10 hours daily power cut.

The Republic Day celebrations had a special meaning for the students of the Institute of the Blind who sang several patriotic songs to enliven the morning celebrations. After unfurling the National Flag by senior Congress leader Ratna, students gave a performance on the flute and presented a group song to remember the great leaders. Later, the management committee distributed sweets among students and staff.

Guru Nanak Dev University vice-chancellor Dr Jai Rup Singh hoisted the National Flag on the university campus. He said the teachers and the scientists must unite to fight the social evils afflicting society, adding that the country needed their wholehearted support to tackle the present economic slowdown.

The management and staff of SL Bhavans celebrated the occasion by unfurling the flag by managing committee chairman Avinash Mahindru. He inspired the students to follow the great traditions of leaders like Mahatma Gandhi and first Prime Minister Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru.

Former Congress MLA Rajkumar Verka shared his views on the importance of Republic Day at Pandit Baij Nath (PBN) Senior Secondary School. Later, students presented a cultural programme and PT show. Earlier, the NCC air wing cadets gave the a salute to the flag.



Students paint social evils on canvass 

Tribune News Service
Amritsar, January 27 Panchrang, a group of creative artistes, held an exhibition and competition for school and college painters at Virsa Vihar on July 25.

Paintings by school and college students were on several burning issues concerning the contemporary society. Female foeticide, excesses on women, decaying environment and many more issues were portrayed on canvass by schoola and college going artists.

Health minister Lakshmi Kanta Chawla handed over prices to the winners. She said the health department would extend full cooperation to the NGOs working to eradicate evils like drug addiction and female foeticide from society.

Lavish Seth of Ajanta Senior Secondary School secured the first, Simarjit Kaur of Ajit Vidyalaya stood second and Surabhi of Madhav Vidya Niketan third in the painting contest for the students of classes IX and X.

In the competition for classes XI and XII, Mehak Tully of DAV Public School and Astha Joshi of Government Girls Senior Secondary School were jointly adjudged first 
while Sambhvi Sharma of DAV Public School secured second and Neha Bharti of Government Senior Secondary School stood third.

In the contest for college students, Simarjit Kaur of the BBK DAV College for Women, Simarjit Kaur of Sri Guru Tegh Bahadur College and Shailja of DAV College remained first, second and third, respectively.

Among the students of postgraduate classes, students of the BBK DAV College for women swept all the three positions. Preetpal Kaur, Sumedha and Ravneet secured the first, second and third positions, respectively.



Health dept holds medical camp

Amritsar, January 27
The health department held a medical camp for pregnant women and children in the 0-10 years age group at Government Senior Secondary School, Gol Bagh, here on January 25

Health minister Lakshmi Kanta Chawla, who was the chief guest, said camps were being organised across the state for medical care of the mother and the child.

Expressing her concern over the alarming death rate of infants, she said nearly 40 per cent of the infants died before reaching the age of one year in the country. She said in order to provide medical assistance to pregnant women and mothers of children from 0-10 years, the government had adopted various measures. She said for the purpose ASHA workers and doctors were being recruited.

Currently, she said, that nearly 32 per cent women in the state were being provided facilities during delivery and post-delivery period.

The health department would provide allopathic, unani and ayurvedic treatment to patients under one roof, she said.

Yoga instructor Madhu Bala educated the participants with various yoga asanas. — TNS



Lecture on relevance of ‘gurbani’ 
Tribune News Service

Amritsar, January 27
The Punjabi Sahit Academy organised a Bhai Jodh Singh memorial lecture on “Relevance of Gurbani in Sikh way of life” here today.

Head of guru nanak studies department of Guru Nanak Dev University Dr Gursharanjit Singh said spreading of religion had become a vocation for minting money in the contemporary period.

The Sikh gurus preached benefits of the humanity at large and stressed on earning ones livelihood by putting in hardwork and donating a portion of it before consumption.

He lamented that materialism had relegated those high values resulting in corruption, social evils, like female foeticide, addiction, dowry and greed in society.

He said these evils had caused people to resort to lying and hollowness in society. “People want to brag about their wealth resulting in mad race for earning much more in which they do not feel hesitant while resorting to the illegal means,” he added.

Dr Inderjit Singh said Gurbani was a perpetual source of light to illuminate the path of darkness presently in which human beings were enmeshed.

Among others, Punjabi Sahitkar Academy general secretary Dr Sukhdev Singh Sirsa, Khalsa College principal Dr Daljit Singh addressed the gathering while stage was managed by the Punjabi writer Dr Sham Sunder Dipti.



CM urged to speed up management project 

Amritsar, January 27
The Pollution Control Committee (PCC) has urged Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal to personally intervene to expedite setting up of the solid waste management project in the holy city. The appeal was made at a meeting of the committee held under its president Parkash Singh Bhatty.

He said the Municipal Corporation had not taken a no-objection certificate (NOC) from the Punjab Pollution Control Board for the project till August last year. He rued that work on the project was going at a snail’s pace.

The PCC requested the authority to put a check on the stray dogs, adding that although the Animal Welfare Board had sanctioned Rs 1.20 crore, no visible effects were seen. It drew the attention towards a four-year-old girl of Chheharta who was severely bitten by a dog. Bhatty said despite court directions, advertisements, display boards, buntings and banners were being put on roads and highways. He said the MC had failed to take care of the electronic waste like TV, refrigerators and computers as per the established norms. — TNS



Area development committee set up
Tribune News Service

Amritsar, January 27
A 15-member area development committee has been constituted for the overall development of areas adjoining Guru Nanak Dev University, Dashmesh Avenue, Vikas Nagar and Shori Nagar. Prabhpal Singh has been elected president of the committee and Amarjit Singh Bai general secretary.

Bai said the main purpose of the committee was to work for the widening and strengthening of the roads, proper functioning of the sewerage and developing a green belt along the polytechnic road. Other members of the committee include Prof Joginder Singh, Prof Sukha Singh, Capt Balbir Singh, R.P. Sobti, Prabhdial Singh Randhawa, Surjit Singh, Kirpal Singh, Gurdarshan Singh, Kashmir Singh, Deepak Sharma, Balkar Singh Randhawa, Ramesh Sharma and Maninder Singh.



Badal lays foundation stone of old-age home

Amritsar, January 27
Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal laid the foundation stone of an old-age home to be constructed by Chief Khala Diwan (CKD), the oldest Sikh institution, at a cost of Rs 2 crore near its orphanage situated on Ram Tirath Road here. Badal said Punjabis had a rich cultural legacy to respect their parents and it was imperative on every one’s part to take care and nurture their parents. He said the spirit must be perpetuated from generation to generation to give due respect and honour to the senior citizens.

CKD president Charanjit Singh Chadha said the four-storey building would have all the facilities, including lifts, kitchen, park and small library. — TNS



SAD-BJP govt accused of charging hefty taxes
Tribune News Service

Amritsar, January 27
The Shiromani Akali Dal (Panch Pardhani) accused the state government of charging hefty taxes form every tractor-trailer carrying sand in Ajnala subdivision of the district.

Baldev Singh Sirsa, special secretary heneral, SAD (Panch Prashani), citing the instance of Ajnala tehsil, said a temporary office was opened at the Shakki nullah in the area where tractor-trailers of sand were allowed after realising Rs 1,000 each. He said the Akali-BJP government came into power on the slogan of “Raj nahi sewa” (service and not rule), yet they were charging hefty taxes from the common people.

He said that his party would knock the doors of court for justice after garnering data.



Cong wing to be recast soon: Ratna 
Tribune News Service

Amritsar, January 27
Ratna, the newly elected president of the Punjab Pradesh Mahila Congress Committee, stated that the Punjab Mahila Congress would recruit about 50,000 women workers before the ensuing Lok Sabha elections. She said the state mahila wing of the party would be reconstituted within a month. In a press statement issued here, Ratna, who would take charge on January 28 at Chandigarh, said the women Congress workers would play a major role in securing the victory of Congress candidates in all the constituencies.

She said the state would be in election  mode in the coming two months, she said. she said she would try to strengthen the party in all rural areas. She said a state-level Mahila  Congress convention would be held in Punjab by the end of February.



Mass Marriage
32 poor couples tie knots
Our Correspondent

Amritsar, January 27
The Rotary Club Midtown organised a mass marriage function where 32 couples from the poor and Scheduled Caste families tied knots in the presence of their family members.

Project coordinator of the 11th edition of the marriages Sunil Kapur said a lot of legwork was required to find a suitable match for the people from the rural belt according to their requirements.

He said the club had been organising the marriages as part of the social obligations to help the couples.

He said the club provided the basic utility items, including some gold ornaments like rings and household items.

He said on the arrival of the marriage party, breakfast was served and after performing the rituals, the marriage parties were provided lunch before the formal send-off by their relatives and the club members.

The club has been organising the mass marriage through contributions from members of the organisation and generous friends of the club as the total cost was around Rs 4 to 5 lakh, he added.



Film on life of Bhagat Puran Singh

Amritsar, January 27
A documentary film on the life and works of Bhagat Puran Singh would be released here on January 29.

Surjit Singh Barnala, Governor, Tamil Nadu, would release the documentary jointly produced by Canada-based NRIs Jasbir Singh Hanspal and Joginder Singh Kalsi.

Dr Inderjit Kaur, president, All-India Pingalwara Charitable Society (AIPCS), said the documentary would be available in Punjabi and English languages. She elaborated that various aspects of Bhagat Puran Singh’s life, like social service, his compassion and love for the neglected segment of society, protection of environment and spread of Pingalwara movement, had been widely covered.

The 45-minute documentary was devoted to the relatively unknown yet remarkably selfless life and work of Bhagat Puran Singh, moving spirit behind setting up of Pingalwara. Bhagat Puran Singh dedicated his entire life serving the sick, weak and destitute. — TNS



Five villagers injured in group clash

Tarn Taran, January 27
Five persons were injured in a group clash at Bharowal village, 15 km from here, yesterday over installing Guru Granth Sahib in Marrar Sahib Gurdwara.

The police has to take two persons in custody from both the sides after registering a case under sections 145, 153-A, 160, 148 and 149, IPC .

According to the information, a group led by Fateh Singh, had been managing the village dharamshala for years. After he adopted Christianity some time back, his rival group led by Charan Singh took over the management of the Sikh dharamshala.

The residents constructed a gurdwara on the premises of dharamshala and the villagers under the headship of Charan Singh were trying to install Guru Granth Sahib yesterday when the rival group prevented then to do so. The verbal dual turned into a clash in which stones were thrown on each other. Five persons were injured in the incident.

SP (HQ) Rashpal Singh said the situation was under control and the police had been deputed in the village to monitor the situation. — OC



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