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THE TRIBUNE SPECIALS
50 YEARS OF INDEPENDENCE

TERCENTENARY CELEBRATIONS

finance & contract committee meeting
Panel approves 10 agendas, rest pending
Bathinda, September 27
The finance and contract committee of the Municipal Corporation Bathinda (MCB) today debated the issue of estimates prepared for development work being accepted at much lesser rates than that quoted in the tenders.
Mayor Baljit Singh Birbehman presides over a meeting of the finance and contract committe of the Municipal Corporation Bathinda (MCB) on Thursday. The commitee said quality check of works should be conducted before making payment. Mayor Baljit Singh Birbehman presides over a meeting of the finance and contract committe of the Municipal Corporation Bathinda (MCB) on Thursday. The commitee said quality check of works should be conducted before making payment. Photo: Bhupinder Dhillon 

Water tank to come up on two acres at DAV pond site
Bathinda, September 27
Municipal Corporation Bathinda (MCB) today directed the Improvement Trust to construct a water collection tank on two acres of land, instead of the one acre proposed earlier, to hold rainwater.


EARLIER STORIES



Focus on water conservation, diversification at Kisan Mela
Bathinda, September 27
The progressive farmers, who came from various villages of Bathinda district and neighbouring areas, shared their success stories at the Kisan Mela organised by the Punjab Agriculture University's (PAU) Regional Research Centre, here today.

Holed up
Nearly a year after it was first reported, the rodent menace continues to plague the area near the railway station in the city.
Nearly a year after it was first reported, the rodent menace continues to plague the area near the railway station in the city. The rodents have dug holes not only under the railway tracks but also near the ticket counters. People sleeping on the floor at the railway station at night have complained of rat bites, raising concern over health as well as the safety of the basic infrastructure in the area. Text & photo: Archit watts

HD 2967 wheat seeds see huge demand
Bathinda, September 27
Seeds of an improved and recently-introduced wheat sold like hotcakes during the Kisan Mela held at Dabwali road here today.

J&K school students visit Chetak Corps
Bathinda, September 27
A group of 23 school students from Ramban district of Jammu and Kashmir accompanied by two teachers visited the Chetak Corps at the Bathinda Military Station here today.

Now, registration for photography contest till Oct 10
Bathinda, September 27
The date of registration for a photography contest to be organised by the district administration has been extended from September 27 to October 10.

Hindi fortnight to conclude today
Bathinda, September 27
A fortnight being observed for promotion of Hindi language will conclude at the Central University of Punjab, Bathinda, on September 28.

Anganwari workers stage a protest at Nehru Park near the Mini-secretariat in the city on Thursday.
Anganwari workers stage a protest at Nehru Park near the Mini-secretariat in the city on Thursday. Photo: Bhupinder Dhillon

Brahma Kumaris lay stress on stress-free life
Bathinda, September 27
A seminar for nature, environment and disaster management was organised by the Brahma Kumaris Prajapati University, Mount Abu, at the Adesh University here today.

Snatcher faces public anger after abortive bid
Bathinda, September 27
People severely thrashed a miscreant when he tried to snatch gold earrings from a woman on the Bhatti Road here.

Students sensitised to tuberculosis
Bathinda, September 27
A TB awareness workshop was organised on the campus of Shri Guru Gobind Singh Model School, Partap Nagar, today.

50 donate blood at camp
Bathinda, September 27
Fifty units of blood were collected at a blood donation camp held by the NSS units of the department of electronics engineering and the department of electrical engineering of the Punjab Technical University Giani Zail Singh Campus, Bathinda.





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finance & contract committee meeting
Panel approves 10 agendas, rest pending
Estimates prepared for development works debated at MCB meeting
Megha Mann
Tribune News Service

Bathinda, September 27
The finance and contract committee of the Municipal Corporation Bathinda (MCB) today debated the issue of estimates prepared for development work being accepted at much lesser rates than that quoted in the tenders.

In most development work kept for the consideration of the committee today, the contractors had proposed to do work at less than 30 per cent of the quoted rates (see box).

"Either the estimates prepared are inflated or the quality of work done will be compromised," pointed out Mayor Baljit Singh Birbehman and Senior Deputy Mayor Tarsem Goyal.

Goyal said besides paying for the work, a contractor also has to bear the charges like two per cent income tax, one per cent cess, 5.5 per cent VAT, 3 per cent employees provident fund (EPF) and the department's commission. "I wonder if so much expense leaves any margin of profit for the contractors? We are living in times when no one works for charity," he said.

Municipal Commissioner Uma Shankar Gupta and XEN Tirath Ram replied that all estimates are prepared in the frame of the Common Schedule of Rates (CSR) that the government has provided. "We do not prepare estimates on our own," they reiterated.

The members of the committee were of the opinion that quality check of the work should be conducted before making any payment. It was decided that the report of the quality work should be attached with the bills.

Meanwhile, the committee today passed only ten agendas of the 34 presented in the first list and 23 presented as supplementary agendas. The rest have been kept pending for discussion later.

The major issues were giving contract for 22 unipoles in the city.

Tenders for the same had been floated thrice but could not mature due to one reason or the other, leading to the loss of revenue for the corporation for two months wherein the poles remained blank.

The contract has now been awarded to SSP Outdoor at the rate of Rs 19,000 per pole per month. Assistant municipal commissioner Kamal Kant said Rs 4 to Rs 5 lakh have been recovered from the security deposit of the defaulter Adcraft Advertisers who could not sustain the contract and later surrendered it.

The committee today approved the issue of giving gate entry on Barnala Road to Uday Advertisers for a period of three years. Similarly, the gate entry on Goniana Road has been given to SSP Outdoor for a period of four years on build-operate-transfer (BOT)-cum-revenue sharing basis.

The issue of giving contract for beat boxes, traffic umbrellas and gypsy shelters drew dissenting notes from Tarsem Goyal.

The agenda mentioned that the Expression of Interest (EoI) was invited for the construction of these structures and the work was awarded to Satish Kumar who had proposed to own these structures for a period of two years and 11 months.

The Senior Deputy Mayor said that as per the protocol, separate tenders should be invited for the same exercise, whereas the officials of the corporation claimed that the EoI and tenders were invited together. It was then decided to invite tenders and not to award the work on EoI basis.

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Water tank to come up on two acres at DAV pond site
Megha Mann
Tribune News Service

Bathinda, September 27
Municipal Corporation Bathinda (MCB) today directed the Improvement Trust to construct a water collection tank on two acres of land, instead of the one acre proposed earlier, to hold rainwater.

During a meeting of the DAV College pond sub-committee held today, the members of the committee and the officials of the corporation asked the Improvement Trust to construct a tank on two acres of land keeping in view the future requirements of the area.

In its earlier proposal, the Improvement Trust had claimed that a tank constructed on one acre of land would be enough to contain all the water that is presently there in the aforesaid pond. The municipal councillors were, however, apprehensive and a sub-committee was constituted to look into the issue.

Deposing before the sub-committee, Rakesh Gar, XEN, Improvement Trust, said a 20 feet deep pond spread over one acre was enough to contain water. He reasoned that though the scheme was spread over 11.78 acres, but the water had currently accumulated over only five acres of land, at a depth of 4.5 feet to 5 feet. "Our calculations show that a 20 feet deep pond spread over one acre would be enough," he said.

However, others present at the meeting objected to it and laid emphasis on increasing the area to two acres. Official of the Improvement Trust tried to negotiate saying that one acre would be left open and another one acre would be covered and used for parking purposes. The proposal was rejected and the members stuck to the demand of two acres of land, which the Improvement Trust officials agreed to.

A blueprint of the plan was also presented according to which 75 per cent of the area would be utilized for public services and the remaining 25 per cent would be utilized for commercial purposes. Members of the sub-committee insisted on the inclusion of a senior citizens' home, which has been agreed to. An area of 250 square yards has been earmarked for the purpose and it would be constructed on the lines of the senior citizens' home constructed in the BRS Nagar area of Ludhiana.

While the municipal corporation is giving its land free of cost, it has decided to share the revenue that the Improvement Trust will earn from the venture. The revenue sharing has been settled in the ratio of 60:40 wherein the corporation will keep 60 per cent share of the profit earned.

Though the Punjab Water Supply and Sewerage Board (PWSSB) officials had also been directed to appear for the meeting, they were not present.

Prominent among others present at the meeting included Mayor Baljit Singh Birbehman, Senior Deputy Mayor Tarsem Goyal, Deputy Mayor Gurinder Mangat, Commissioner Uma Shankar Gupta and the municipal councillors.

Blueprint for the area

  • A park in 4000 square yards.
  • Parking for stadium in 1.25 acres with margin for future expansion as multi-level parking.
  • Auditorium in 4000 square yards.
  • Community hall in 2000 square yards.
  • 7500 square yards for housing public buildings such as government offices and nationalised banks.
  • 3 acres to be developed for commercial purposes.

Ways to dispose of water as suggested by Trust

  • Harvesting rainwater with technical guidance from a government agency.
  • As soon as rain stops, water collected should be pumped into the trunk sewer.

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Focus on water conservation, diversification at Kisan Mela
Progressive farmers share tales of success, give tips on allied occupations at the fair
Gurdeep Singh Mann
Tribune News Service

New tools were on display at the Kisan Mela organised by the regional research station of the PAU in Bathinda on Thursday.
New tools were on display at the Kisan Mela organised by the regional research station of the PAU in Bathinda on Thursday. Photo: Bhupinder Dhillon 

Bathinda, September 27
The progressive farmers, who came from various villages of Bathinda district and neighbouring areas, shared their success stories at the Kisan Mela organised by the Punjab Agriculture University's (PAU) Regional Research Centre, here today.

Beekeepers, dairy farmers, vegetable sellers and others who had had opted for diversified farming, using modern techniques, held exhibitions at the Kisan Mela and answered the queries of the visiting farmers.

The progressive farmers made the visitors aware of the advantages of diversification and offered to help them in getting rid of problems related to agriculture.

Progressive farmers, Jagtar Brar from nearby Sivian village, and Gurcharan Singh Mann from Tungwali, said smart work and awareness is the need of the hour in the field of agriculture.

Gurcharan Singh Mann put honey brought from his village on display at the Kisan Mela. He said the visiting farmers had numerous queries over starting beekeeping and the sale of honey and its marketing.

Mann said lack of hard work and awareness among the farmers has plunged the marginal farmers in Punjab into a crisis. The government, with its limited resources, has failed to extend a helping hand to the farmers who are exploited by the middlemen, he added.

Apart from sharing facts and information related to the new varieties of wheat, the farmers discussed ways to tackle the new pests affecting their crops. Private manufacturers also sold and put on display the new agricultural tools. "We came to know about new methods, techniques and ways to get rid of the pests. Everybody laid stress on saving water and preserving natural resources," said Swaran Singh from Makha village in Mansa.

Another farmer, Nardev Singh, from the same village, said besides purchasing seeds, kisan melas also offer a platform to learn something new.

The progressive farmers stressed upon the need to conserve water and pleaded for using drip irrigation. The farmers visited the water engineering stalls, learnt technique related to drip irrigation and the advantages of seed sterilization.

The progressive farmers also put queries to the PAU officials about the problems in marketing of fruits and vegetables and demanded the introduction of new technologies to remove farm residues.

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HD 2967 wheat seeds see huge demand
Gurdeep Singh Mann
Tribune News Service

A shop selling seeds witnesses a huge rush of buyers at the Kisan Mela in Bathinda on Thursday

a farmer carries home a bag of seeds he purchased at the fair.
(Left) A shop selling seeds witnesses a huge rush of buyers at the Kisan Mela in Bathinda on Thursday; a farmer carries home a bag of seeds he purchased at the fair. Photos: Bhupinder Dhillon

Bathinda, September 27
Seeds of an improved and recently-introduced wheat sold like hotcakes during the Kisan Mela held at Dabwali road here today.

The mela was organised by the Regional Research Station of the Punjab Agricultural University (PAU). As much as 800 quintals of the HD 2967, a variety of wheat, was sold fetching Rs 15 lakh. The new variety of wheat was sold at the cost of Rs 900 for a 40 kg bag.

Besides, seeds of other crops, vegetable and fodder, fetched Rs 25.92 lakh at the fair.

Long queues of farmers were witnessed at the stall where seeds of the recently-introduced wheat variety were being sold.

Some progressive farmers and nursery owners were seen selling medicinal and ornamental plants and seeds along the Dabwali road. The entire stretch of the road outside the PAU's Regional Research Station was dotted with seeds and plants. Commuters had a tough time passing through the stretch till evening.

Agriculture experts said the HD 2967 variety was sold to the farmers for the first time and farmers from far-off places, including districts of Punjab, Haryana and Rajasthan, had come to purchase this variety.

The in-charge of a stall selling seeds, Dr Paramjit Singh, said during the previous Kisan Mela, only one to two kg of the HD 2967 variety was sold to the farmers. However, this time, minimum of one bag containing 40 kg of seeds of the improved variety was being offered. At the maximum, a farmer could buy five bags.

He informed that they had received complaints against the PBW 343, a variety of wheat which was quite popular for the past many years. Now, farmers are given an alternate seed in the form of HD 2967.

The agricultural experts said the PAU-recommended new variety of wheat would not be infected with rust and farmers were keen to buy it.

Apart from seeds of wheat, kits containing seeds of vegetables grown in winters were also sold at the Kisan Mila at Rs 100 each. The kits comprised seeds of carrot, radish, spinach, fenugreek and peas. These were introduced to encourage people to grow vegetables in their garden or pots at homes.

PAU officials said seeds of various vegetables fetched Rs 2 lakh.

The other varieties of wheat that were sold at the mela were PBW-550, PBW-621, PBW-343 and PBW-17. These varieties realised Rs 1 to Rs 1.5 lakh.

As many as 120 stalls of various farm tools, agro-chemicals and other equipment were set up at the mela.

In-charge of the Farm Advisory Service Scheme (FASS) Dr Jatinder Brar said citrus seeds and plants like kinnow, guava and lemon were also sold. He said literature on Rabi crops was sold to create awareness among farmers. He said an exhibition put up by the FASS attracted farmers and farm women alike.

A function was held on the occasion where Member of Parliament Balwinder Singh Bhundar was the chief guest and PAU vice-chancellor Dr Baldev Singh Dhillon presided over. Director of the PAU Regional Research Station Dr Jaspal Singh Gill was also present.

Meanwhile, farmer organisations rued that the sale of unhygienic cut fruits, juices and other edibles by roadside vendors went unchecked during the mela and parking of vehicles remained unorganised.

Many vehicles were parked on the Dabwali road leading to chaos. Commuters faced inconvenience passing through the stretch.

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J&K school students visit Chetak Corps
Tribune News Service

The students with GOC Lt Gen Sanjeev Anand on Thursday.
The students with GOC Lt Gen Sanjeev Anand on Thursday.

Bathinda, September 27
A group of 23 school students from Ramban district of Jammu and Kashmir accompanied by two teachers visited the Chetak Corps at the Bathinda Military Station here today.

The group is on an educational tour to Delhi and Agra as part of Operation Sadbhavna of the Indian Army. During their stay at the Bathinda Military Station, the children from Jammu and Kashmir were given a brief exposure to the various aspects of the military way of life.

The programme included equipment display of artillery and air defence guns and a visit to the areas of interest in the military station.

The children had an informal interaction with Lieutenant General Sanjeev Anand, VSM, General Officer Commanding (GOC), Chetak Corps and various other officers.

The General Officer Commanding presented souvenirs to the visiting students and hoped that the tour would help in enriching their experience.

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Now, registration for photography contest till Oct 10
Tribune News Service

Bathinda, September 27
The date of registration for a photography contest to be organised by the district administration has been extended from September 27 to October 10.

In a press statement issued here today, Deputy Commissioner Kamal Kishore Yadav stated that those interested in participating in the contest could submit their applications at the MGSIPA office (second floor, room number 306 E) of the District Administrative Complex on any working day between 10 am and 5 pm.

The contest will be held for five categories - the district's historical places, cultural places and industrial projects; nature photography; portrait; off-beat photos; and action photography. Photographs should be related to people, happening, events and things in Bathinda district only.

Every participant will have to participate at least in three categories. Photojournalists working for any newspaper or agency are not eligible.

The winners of each category will get a cash prize of Rs 10,000.

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Hindi fortnight to conclude today
Tribune News Service

Bathinda, September 27
A fortnight being observed for promotion of Hindi language will conclude at the Central University of Punjab, Bathinda, on September 28.

Vice-chancellor Dr Jai Rup Singh had inaugurated the fortnight on the occasion of Hindi Divas on September 14.

Various activities such as calligraphy competition, poem recitation, declamation and quiz contests, essay writing, poem writing, short-story writing and debates were organised during the fortnight that saw participation from students and staff members.

The closing ceremony of the Hindi Pakhwara will be organised in the university's auditorium on September 28 and Dr Jai Rup Singh will preside over the function. On the occasion, the key speaker would be the Head of the Hindi Department, Panjab University, Chandigarh, Dr Baijnath Prasad.

Prizes will be distributed to the winners of different competitions and activities.

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Brahma Kumaris lay stress on stress-free life
Tribune News Service

Bathinda, September 27
A seminar for nature, environment and disaster management was organised by the Brahma Kumaris Prajapati University, Mount Abu, at the Adesh University here today.

Programme coordinator Dr Parmod Goyal welcomed the delegates and dignitaries. North Zone coordinator Science and Engineering, Research Wing (Brahma Kumaris University), BK Bharat Bhushan, joint commissioner SK Mittal, BK Shiram, BK Suman Behan along with others attended the seminar.

The keynote speaker, BK Bharat Bhushan, spoke at length about peaceful and stress-free living, drug de-addiction and medicine-free life. He emphasised on adopting Rajyoga and meditation as the way of life.

We should keep mind cool and calm for peaceful, healthy and stress free living. We should forget bad events of life and think of present status of living. We should be satisfied with minimum requirements of life, he said.

Medical superintendent of the Adesh Hospital Brig Dr Avtar Singh Bansal thanked proposed the vote of thanks.

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Snatcher faces public anger after abortive bid
Tribune News Service

Bathinda, September 27
People severely thrashed a miscreant when he tried to snatch gold earrings from a woman on the Bhatti Road here.

In a complaint to the police, one Sheela Rani, a resident of the Bhatti Road, stated that she along with her daughter-in-law were returning from market on a rickshaw when on reaching near her residence, two young boys tried to snatch her gold earrings.

The women raised an alarm and one of the accused was nabbed by the passersby. The snatcher was thrashed by the public and was later handed over to the police.

The police has registered a case against the accused, Kuljit Singh of Amarpura Basti and an unidentified person, under Sections 356, 382 and 511 of the IPC at the Civil Lines police station.

Motorbike stolen

A motorbike parked near the Bibi Wala Road was stolen by an unidentified person.

In a complaint to the police, Rahul Mittal of Vishal Nagar stated that his bike, which was worth nearly Rs 27,000, was stolen from the Bibi Wala Road. A case has been registered in this connection under Section 379 of the IPC at the Civil Lines police station.

Booked for rash driving

The police has registered a case against the driver of a Scorpio for inflicting injuries upon a resident of Hazura Kapura Colony.

In a complaint to the police, Kamal Sharma stated that he was riding a motorcycle near the Amrik Singh Road and was hit by a rashly-driven Scorpio. He said he sustained serious injuries in the accident and had to be hospitalised.

Later, the police recorded the statements of the injured and registered a case under Sections 279, 337 and 338 of the IPC at the Kotwali police station.

No arrest has been made in this regard so far.

Rajasthan resident arrested with 5 kg opium

The police has arrested a Rajasthan resident for carrying five kg of opium.

The accused, Radhe Shyam, was caught carrying the contraband near Jhumba village. He was brought to the Nandgarh police station where his statements were recorded.

A case under Sections 18, 21, 61, 85 of the NDPS Act has been registered against him.

The investigating officer in the case said the accused seemed to have been making quick buck by selling opium after purchasing it from Rajasthan.

Three booked for assault

The police has booked three persons, including a woman, for beating up a woman at Diyalpura Bhaika village.

In her complaint to the police, Mandeep Kaur stated that she resided with her husband at Ludhiana and had come to her ancestral house at Diyalpura Bhaika where she was attacked by the accused, Gurcharan Singh, Gurmel Singh and Beant Kaur.

The matter was brought into the notice of the police and one of the accused, Gurmel Singh, was arrested and brought to the police station. The police said a family dispute led to the incident.

A case under Sections 324 and 34 of the IPC has been registered against the accused at the Diyalpura police station.

Woman beaten up

The police has booked three persons for beating up a woman resident of Multania over an old dispute.

In a complaint lodged with the police, Beant Kaur stated that the accused entered her house and inflicted injuries upon her.

The police has registered a case against Jaswinder Kaur, Jagjit Singh and Jaggi under Sections 452, 341, 324, 323 and 34 of the IPC at the Talwandi Sabo police station.

No arrest has been made in this regard so far.

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Students sensitised to tuberculosis
Tribune News Service

Bathinda, September 27
A TB awareness workshop was organised on the campus of Shri Guru Gobind Singh Model School, Partap Nagar, today.

Gagan Goyal, communication facilitator from the District Health Society-Revised National TB Control Programme (RNTCP), Bathinda, made students and staff members aware about the disease.

On the occasion, Goyal urged people to get their sputum examined immediately in case they discover symptoms of TB like cough for more than two weeks, blood in sputum, loss of appetite, loss of weight, pain in chest etc. He said the sputum examination was done free of cost in government hospitals.

Goyal appealed to the people not to leave the treatment midway. The patient should complete the course of medicine, ranging from six to eight months.

Medicine is given free of cost in the government hospitals and by Dot providers.

School principal Prem Lata Sharma asked the students and the staff to spread awareness about the disease so that its occurrence could be prevented.

District TB Officer Dr Ashok Monga also spoke on the occasion.

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50 donate blood at camp
Tribune News Service

Bathinda, September 27
Fifty units of blood were collected at a blood donation camp held by the NSS units of the department of electronics engineering and the department of electrical engineering of the Punjab Technical University Giani Zail Singh Campus, Bathinda.

The camp was organised in collaboration with Samruddha Jeevan Foundation.

The campus director, Dr. Jasbir Singh Hundal, who also donated blood, motivated students to come forward for the noble cause.

Manager of Samruddha Jeevan Foundation Vikas Mishra also addressed and motivated the students. The blood donors were felicitated with wrist watches.

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