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August, 2008




Sham Sharma

Dr Kharak Singh, a Sikh scholar, passed away at Mohali today after a prolonged illness. He was 86. He will be cremated tomorrow at Mohali. Author of many books, Dr Kharak Singh, was a founder member of the Institute of Sikh Studies. He also worked as adviser in the FAO at Rome.

Dr Kharak Singh did doctorate in agriculture economics from Ohio University in the USA. Dr Kharak Singh was known as an authority on Sikhism. He was also convener of the International Sikh Confederation. He is survived by his wife, two sons and two daughters.

According to press report of Badal's office, Punjab Chief Minister Mr. Parkash Singh Badal today expressed profound grief and sorrow over the sad demise of the celeberated Sikh scholar Dr Kharak Singh.

In a condolence message, Mr. Badal said that Dr Kharak Singh was an Institution in himself and would be remembered by one and all for his outstanding services towards Sikh scholary works and research studies. In his death a void has been created in the Sikh intellectual and literary circles which was difficult to be filled.

Mr. Badal also shared his heartfelt sympathies with the members of the bereaved family and prayed to the Almighty to grant peace to the departed soul and give strength and courage to them to bear this irreparable loss.

Meanwhile, President Shiromani Akali Dal Mr. Sukhbir Singh Badal also mourned the death of Sikh scholar Dr. Kharak Singh and described him as 'an authority on Sikhism'.

In Nov. 2006, according to Tribune report, "Don’t politicise Akal Takht" he wrote"

He traced the history of Akal Takht. He said with constitution of the SGPC in 1925, Akal Takht and its jathedar became subservient to the SGPC administration. “This downward slide in the image and role of Akal Takht and near absence of its underlying all inclusive philosophy of Guru Granth Sahib and Guru Panth or “piri and miri” has reached its nadir today with the Akal Takht jathedar being a puppet in the hands of ruling political party governing the SGPC and Akal Takht merely a paper tiger whose edicts are being followed more in their breach than in compliance,” he said. Giani Gurbachan Singh, Head Granthi, Sri Harmandar Sahib, who inaugurated the seminar recommended that the spiritually and intellectually strongest person among the Sikhs should occupy the seat of the Jathedar of Akal Takht in the tradition of Guru Hargobind who appointed Bhai Gurdas as the first jathedar of Akal Takht.



Chandigarh Aug 7, 2008

State institute of Science Education (SCERT) Punjab, would conduct the State Level Talent Search Examination for the Year 2008-09 on 16-11-08 to select 95 students from class 8th in the state.

Disclosing this here today a spokesman of the education department said that National level Examination would be conducted by NCERT New Delhi in May 2009. Students studying in 8th Class in State Govt, Kendriya Vidyalyas, Navodaya Vidalyas or any other type of recognized, affiliated schools situated in Punjab, securing minimum 70% marks for general category and 55 % marks for SC/ST/Physically challenged students in 7th class annual examination, annual examination would be eligible. The medium of examination would be Punjabi/English.

He added that there would be two question papers Mental Ability Test (MAT) and Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) for 90 marks each. Time would be 90 minutes for each paper. Under SAT there are seven subjects namely Physics, Chemistry, Biology, Maths, History, Geography, Civics.

All these seven subjects are compulsory. He further added that admission forms could be down loaded from the website The Admission forms duly filled in and complete in all respects should reach the Principal of the school (center) as given in the admission form by 30.8.08. Where examination center in the concerned District is situated. No forms/ request would be entertained at the State Institute of Science Education, Punjab, and Chandigarh. It is necessary for the candidate belonging to Scheduled Caste/Scheduled tribe Category to attach the attested copy of the certificate regarding reserved caste issued by SDM/Tehsildar with the admission form. There would be 3% reservation for Physically challenged candidates i.e 1% for each namely hearing, physically, impaired and visually challenged irrespective of caste category (General, SC, ST) Candidates belonging to physically challenged category must attach one attested copy of certificate issued by the competent authority stating that the child suffer from 40% or more as per the PWD Act, 1995 disability and that the disability is of permanent/temporary nature. The candidate would be considered in general category if the above permanent/temporary nature. The candidate would be considered in general category if the above-mentioned certificate does not reach up till 30-8-08 attached with the admission form. No admission fee is charged for this examination.



Chandigarh august 7, 2008

Keeping in view to take advantage of rich cultural heritage and natural resources, as well as the opening up of international air gateways through Amritsar and (shortly) Chandigarh and its relatively close proximity to the Greater Delhi Conurbation, Punjab needs to design and communicate a destination brand image on which it would build its future product development and marketing strategies and actions.

Disclosing this here today an official spokesman said that the Punjab Tourism Department invites applications from well established and professional and brand development agencies to assist in the preparations of a Destination Punjab Brand Image. For further details to know minimum technical requirements and other clarifications, contact Archives Bhawan Plot No-3 Sector 38-A Chandigarh, Email



Chandigarh August 7, 2008
Shikha Nehra

In order to provide better health care facilities in rural areas, the Punjab government has launched a special scheme under National Rural Health Mission Programme in which one fully equipped mobile van would be provided to each district.

Disclosing this here today, Prof.Lakshmi Kanta Chawla Health and Family Welfare Minister Punjab said that to initiate this scheme one such van has been sent to District Mansa while remaining districts would be covered under this scheme by 15th of August 2008. She further said that each mobile van costing Rs.37 Lakh would be fully equipped with medicines, labs facilities etc. and other required material along with medical and Para medical staff. The patients would be examined there and then and provided with the medicines on the spot besides this malaria and other routine blood tests would also be conducted in mobile vans. Patients suffering from serious ailments would be referred to nearby hospitals.

Reiterating Punjab government's resolve to provide excellent and affordable health care facilities to the people at their doorsteps, the Minister said that these mobile vans would be closely monitored by the senior officers of the department so that the public could not be inconvenienced.



Chandigarh August 7, 2008

Punjab would soon explore the IT potential of Tier II and III cities like Ludhiana, Amritsar, Jalandhar and Bathinda as a long term strategy after witnessing IT sector's impressive growth as a cluster in Mohali in recent years.

The Government of Punjab today reached this consensus after a high level meeting with top decision makers from the IT industry, who are in Chandigarh to participate in e-Revolution 2008. The breakfast meeting was hosted by the Government of Punjab and was attended by several key ministers and other senior officials from the Government. The meeting witnessed a very high level of participation from noted CEOs and regional heads of top IT companies, including organisations such as Dell, Infosys, QAI, Sopra, IDS, Annik Technology Services, and Mobera System, among others. Also present at the meeting was Mr. Ganesh Natarajan, Chairman, NASSCOM and Global Head, Zensar Technology.

To convey the Punjab leadership's strong commitment to the cause of the IT sector, the meeting was attended by Minister for Industries, Mr. Manoranjan Kalia, Minister for IT, Sardar Adaish Pratap Singh Kairon and Minister of Finance, Sardar Manpreet Singh Badal, alongwith the Chief Secretary, Mr. R.I. Singh besides the presence of Principal Secretary, Industries & Commerce, Secretary, Housing & Urban Development and Secretary, IT.

The industry leaders endorsed the State's holistic strategy to create a favourable ecosystem for IT, which focuses on the four pillars of infrastructure, human resources, policy framework and investor relations. The formation of a core IT Vision Group for the State of Punjab was also discussed at the forum. NASSCOM Chairman, Mr. Ganesh Natarajan came out in strong support of such an initiative and said that NASSCOM will provide all necessary facilitation for the setting up of such a group which would meet at regular intervals and drive the agenda for growth in the region

The 11 member delegation from industry then participated in an open house discussion over breakfast, sharing their views on how they see Punjab emerging as a significant player on the national scene, with Mohali's impressive growth as a cluster in recent years. They also supported the view that the Government of Punjab should explore the IT potential of Tier II and III cities like Ludhiana, Amritsar, Jalandhar and Bathinda as a long term strategy.

The industry participants strongly approved the State's pro-active initiatives to develop world class infrastructure and human resources in the State – the new IIT at Ropar, Knowledge City at Mohali and Convention Centre in Mohali, key among them. Recent policy initiatives which include the Super Mega Industrial Park Policy, Industrial Facilitation Act, deemed approval for projects and online submission of forms, were all believed to send out positive signals to the investor community.

The Industry Minister, Mr. Manoranjan Kalia, invited industry to come and explore various locations in Punjab, including Kapurthala which is being developed as a focal point, with an emphasis on IT. The IT Minister, Mr., Adaish Pratap Singh Kairon, also assured the industry leaders present in the room of extending whole hearted support from the State Government to ensure that the IT sector grows and prospers in Punjab. He requested leaders in the room to reach out regularly to the Government with their feedback and perspective. The meeting concluded with a strong message to industry from the Finance Minister, Sardar Manpreet Singh Badal. He said that "The Government of Punjab is keen to succeed in IT at any cost. We should also see that no child is left behind, and the benefit of IT industry trickles down to everybody in the State."

The purpose of the interaction was to initiate an informal discussion with leaders from the IT industry and obtain their perspective on the roadmap Punjab needs to chart out for the growth of the IT sector in the State. A key objective of the Government was also to set the course for a future dialogue with industry and co-opt them as a stakeholder in Punjab's IT success.

The one hour conclave, started with a brief welcome note from the Chief Secretary, Mr. RI Singh and a presentation on "Punjab's Strategic Roadmap for IT/ITeS Investment" by Ernst & Young's Partner and National Government Advisory Head, Mr. Utkarsh Palnitkar.


Chandigarh August 7, 2008

Punjab Government has decided to constitute District Planning Committees in all the 20 districts. These Committees have been constituted in pursuance of the 74th amendment of the Constitution of India.

Disclosing this here today a spokesman of Punjab Government said that the members of the District Planning Committees vary from 15 to 40 depending upon the population of the district. Fatehgarh Sahib, Faridkot, Nawan Shahar, Mansa, Kapurthala, Muktsar, Moga, Mohali, Ropar, Tarn Taran and Barnala will have 15 members each, Bathinda, Hoshiarpur, Ferozepur, Patiala, Jalandhar and Sangrur will have 24 members each and the remaining 3 districts Gurdaspur, Ludhiana and Amritsar will have 40 members each. 80% of these members would be elected from amongst the members of Zila Parishads and members of Municipal Bodies. Remaining 20% of the members would be nominated by the State Government from amongst the MLAs and other persons.

The spokesman further said that the chairman of the District Planning Committee will also be nominated by the Punjab Government from amongst the elected or nominated members of the District Planning Committee. The Deputy Commissioner would be the ex-officio Member Secretary of the Committee.

The District Planning Committee would prepare draft district development plan and prioritise the schemes and programmes to be implemented in the district. The Committee would also monitor and review the progress of projects. The Deputy Commissioners have been asked to hold elections for the District Planning Committees by 25/8/2008. Once these Committees are constituted, the existing District Planning & Development Boards would cease to function, the spokesman added.





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