PLANNING COMMISSION REVIEWS PUNJAB'S PLAN
CHANDIGARH JULY 7, 2008
A team of the Planning Commission of India led by Prof. VL Chopra,
Member undertook the annual review of the performance of Punjab's
State Plan for the year 2007-08 here today.
The Punjab Government team comprising Chief Secretary Ramesh
Inder Singh and senior officials of the State Government apprised
the Planning Commission officials of the plan performance of the
state in 2007-08. As per the data collected by the Punjab State
Planning Board, the State incurred a Plan expenditure of Rs. 5184
crore against an original Plan allocation of Rs. 5111 crore which
was subsequently revised to Rs. 5050 crore.
Expressing satisfaction on the State's overall plan performance
in 2007-08, Prof. VL Chopra stated that it was necessary for Punjab
to further consolidate its performance in the remaining years
of the 11th Five Year Plan in order to regain its position as
a premier State in the country. He urged the Chief Secretary to
accord utmost priority to ensuring timely release of funds to
the Administrative Departments by the State Government for the
Departments to access their due share of funds under Centrally
Sponsored Schemes. The Member impressed upon the Punjab Government
the need to not only achieve quantitative targets but also pay
equal attention towards qualitative achievements. He reflected
on the mismatch between the State's economic and social indicators
and urged the State Government to devote greater attention to
improving their health and educational indicators.
Chief Secretary RI Singh assured the delegation that the State
Government was fully conscious of the problem areas and had taken
steps to streamline the working of important national flagship
programmes such as Sarva Shikhsa Abhiyan (SSA), National Rural
Health Mission (NRHM) and Rashtriya Krishi Vikas Yojana (RKVY)
among others. The State Government would ensure timely release
of State share of Centrally Sponsored Schemes in order to optimally
access the due central share, he stated. He also highlighted before
the visiting delegation some of the unfavourable criteria in various
Centrally-sponsored schemes which Punjab had taken up with various
line Ministries in the Government of India. Prof. Chopra asked
the State Government to send a detailed note on the subject so
that the Planning Commission could help facilitate early clearances
from Government of India.
Earlier, Prof. Chopra called on Punjab Chief Minister Mr. Parkash
Singh Badal and briefly discussed some of the significant issues
related to Punjab's economy.
Among those who attended the day-long meeting were Alka Sirohi,
Principal Adviser, Planning Commission, DS Kalha, Principal Secretary
Finance, Satish Chandra, Secretary Planning, Director Planning
Tejveer Singh and all concerned Administrative Secretaries as
well as officers of the Planning Commission and Punjab State Planning
BADAL CALLS FOR REVOLUTIONARY INITIATIVES
FOR FARM RESURGENCE
CHANDIGARH JULY 7, 2008
Making a strong plea for revolutionary initiatives for agricultural
resurgence in Punjab, The Chief Minister Mr. Parkash Singh Badal
today announced a series of measures to revamp farm economy through
adoption of modern and scientific techniques.
Presiding over a day long interactive session with a cross section
of progressive entrepreneurs from agriculture and allied fields.
Mr. Badal have detailed discussions with the representatives from
these fields to have first hand information about their problems
and act on their suggestions.
Taking part in the deliberations, Mr. Badal asked the Financial
Commissioner Development to undergo zoning of agriculture in the
state in view of better prospects of certain crops in a particular
areas depending upon the texture of the soil and the climatic
conditions. He also emphasized the need to enact the Seed Act
and Nursery Act to ensure the quality of the seeds and saplings
to be provided to the farmers as per the stipulated high quality
norms prescribed by the Punjab Agricultural University. He lamented
the gross exploitation of the farmers by the seed firms which
were supplying spurious quality seeds in the guise of hybrid ones.
The Chief Minister also directed the Vice Chancellor of PAU Ludhiana
to strengthen its extension wing to bridge the knowledge gap between
the experts and the farmers. Likewise, Mr. Badal also asked the
directorate of state agriculture to depute its field staff to
ensure close liaison with the farmers and update their knowledge
on the quality of breeder seeds, pesticides, insecticides and
fertilizers. Mr. Badal also underscored the need to bring awareness
amongst the farming community about the pricing of their commodities
which they produced. He however said that the time was not very
far off when the Punjabi farmer would have to work out the economics
of its produce after taking in to account the cost of agricultural
inputs. He advocated the concept of direct selling of agricultural
produce thereby eliminating the middlemen which was the need of
the hour. He said that our farmers should be duly compensated
for their toil and efforts put in by him for their produce.
Appreciating the conventional wisdom of the Punjabi farmer, Mr.
Badal said that he (farmer) was ever ready to do any experiment
or try innovation provided he was ensured remunerative return
for that. "His innovative approach and adaptability to new
farm practices resulted in first green revolution in the mid sixties
and now Punjab needed a second push for second green revolution
as Punjabi farmer had enormous capacity and capability to achieve
it", said Mr. Badal.
The Chief Minister pointed out that a network of soil and water
testing laboratories was being set up in the state to facilitate
the farmers to get their quality of soil and water tested before
sowing. He said that the government was contemplating to issue
soil health card to the farmers to regularly monitor the level
of micro nutrients and recommend suitable fertilizers in case
of any deficiency. He also asked the agricultural department to
encourage the allied farming activities amongst the farmers to
achieve the targeted agriculture growth rate of 4%.
The Chief Minister also asked the Financial Commissioner Development
to send a joint delegation of progressive farmers and the scientists
of PAU and Guru Angad Dev University of Animal & Veterinary
Sciences abroad to study the farm and dairy practices there and
replicate here to improve the yield both qualitatively and quantitatively.
He also impressed upon the progressive farmers to go for value
addition as the cash crops like durum wheat and baby corn has
wider acceptability in the international market. He cited the
example of Pasta which was in great demand abroad and Punjab had
a tremendous potential to produce it here and the state government
was exploring the possibilities to have a joint venture of Pasta
with Italy- that had a world wide brand patronage in pasta products.
Conceding the demands of the progressive farmers, Mr. Badal asked
the agricultural department to devise ways and means to create
a corpus fund to finance the freight expanses borne by the vegetable
export growers which would be refunded by them within a period
of three months to the state government. Mr. Badal also agreed
to give certain amount of subsidies on the installation of cooling
chambers and heating plants in the fields of vegetable growers.
The first heating plant would be set up in Amritsar district as
a 'pilot project'. The Punjab Agro Corporation would also provide
reefer vans to the vegetable growers on the subsidized rates to
dispatch their consignments at the cargo for export. The Mandi
Board was also asked to provide steel structured green houses
to the vegetable growers at the subsidized rates to ensure better
quality of vegetables. Mr. Badal also agreed in principle to open
grading-cum-waxing units for citrus fruits especially 'kinnow'
to improve its prospects for export.
The representatives from the dairy and fishery sectors also highlighted
their problems in the meeting. The dairy farmers impressed upon
the Chief Minister for upward revision of milk rates in view of
the recent escalation in the prices in green fodder and cattle
feed. The Chief Minister asked Principal Secretary Animal Husbandry
to formulate a self contained policy of dairy and fishery to the
advantage of dairy and fish farmers.
Prominent amongst others who attended the meeting included Agricultural
Minister Sucha Singh Langha, Media Advisor to Chief Minister Harcharan
Bains, Chief Secretary RI Singh, Financial Commissioner Development
RS Sandhu, Principal Secretary Animal Husbandry SC Aggarwal, Managing
Director Punjab Agro SK Sandhu, Director Agriculture BS Sidhu,
Director Horticulture Dr. Baldev Singh and Director Fisheries
Darshan Singh Sayal.
The progressive farmers who attended the meeting included Jagjit
Singh Hara, Ajminder Singh Grewal, Pawanjot Singh, Sukhpal Singh
Bhullar, Jaspal Singh, Damajit Singh Thind, Kuldeep Singh, Sandeep
Singh Randhawa, Mehraban Singh, Davinder Siongh,. Bhagwant Singh
Ahluwalia, Anil Setia, Balwinder Singh Tikka, Sukhjit Singh Bhatti,
Jang Bahadur Singh Sangha, Avtar Singh Dhindsa, Harinder Pal Singh
Bajwa, Bhupinder Singh Randhawa, Karmvir Singh Sidhu, Gurinder
Singh Sarai, Daljeet Singh Gill, Parminder Singh, Tej Singh, Ajit
Inder Pal Singh Cheema, Manjit Singh Sandhu, Ranjit Singh Sidhu,
Mohinder Arora and Satwinder Singh.
PUNJAB TO FLOAT RS. 500 CRORE LOAN
Chandigarh, July 7, 2008
The Punjab Government in line with the Reserve Bank of India
has proposed to float a state loan of Rs. 500 crore to raise part
of the barrowings through auction system.
Disclosing this here today a spokesman of the government said
that the consent of the Central Government has already been obtained
to the floatation of this loan required under Article 293 (3)
of the constitution of India. The stocks would be of 10 years
tenure and the tenure of the stock would commence on July 11,
2008. The loan would be repaid at par on July 11, 2018, he added.
The interest however, would be paid every half yearly on January
11 and July 11.
IRRIGATION PROGRAMME FOR KHARIF SEASON ANNOUNCED
CHANDIGARH, July 7, 2008
The Irrigation Department, Punjab has announced the Rotational
irrigation Programme for the Kharif Season through Canal water
from 8 July to 15 July, 2008. The channels of Sirhind Canal System
would run on priority basis from Bist Doab Canal, Sidhwan Branch,
Bhatinda Branch, Abohar Branch and Patiala feeder respectively.
Disclosing this here today, a spokesman of the Irrigation department
said that direct distributaries of Bhakra Main Line, in Group
'A' being in the first preference would run to their indent. Balance
water supplies would be utilised in Ghaggar link and its off taking
channels i.e. Ghaggar Branch and Patiala Minor in Group 'B' respectively.
The spokesman further said that the Punjab channels off taking
from Harika and Ferozepur Head Works & Branches i.e. all the
direct distributaries of Sirhind Feeder in-group "A"
being in the first preference would run to their indent. Balance
water supplies would be utilised in Abohar Branch off taking from
Sirhind Feeder and its distributaries/minors in-group "B".
The spokesman also said that the channels off taking from upper
Bari Doab Canal i.e. Main Branch Lower with its distributaries
being in first Preference would run to their indent. Balance Surplus
water available would be utilised in Lahore Branch, Sabraon Branch,
Kasur Branch Lower and with its distributaries.
SCHEDULE FOR QUARTERLY LOK ADALATS ANNOUNCED
CHANDIGARH, JULY 7, 2008
Punjab Legal Services Authority has issued schedule of Quarterly
Lok Adalats and Special Lok Adalats to be held in all over Punjab
for the period from July to September, 2008.
Stating this here today, a spokesman of the Punjab Government
said that Lok Adalats would be held at Mansa, Sardulgarh, Budhlada
on 26.7.2008; Hoshiarpur, Garshankar, Dasuya, Amritsar, Patti,
Ajnala, Baba Bakala, Tarn-Taran on 02-08-2008; Labour Court, Bathinda
on 8-8-2008; Kapurthala, Sultanpur Lodhi, Phagwara, Faridkot,
Moga, Muktsar, Malout, Gidderbaha on 9-8-2008; Bathinda, Talwandi
Sabo, Rampura Phul, Fatehgarh Sahib, Amloh on 16-8-08; Ropar,
Mohali, Anandpur Sahib, Kharar on 23-8-08; Labour Court Amritsar
on 29-8-08; Jalandhar, Nawanshahr, Nakodar, Phillour, Balachaur,
Labour Court Jalandhar on 30-8-08; Labour Court Gurdaspur on 5-9-08;
Gurdaspur, Batala, Pathankot on 6-9-08; Ludhiana, Jagraon, Khanna,
Samrala, Labour Court Ludhiana on 13-9-08; Sangrur, Munak, Barnala,
Malerkotla, Dhuri, Sunam, Ferozpur, Abohar, Fazilka, Zira, Jalalabad
West on 20-9-08 and Patiala, Rajpura, Nabha, Samana, Labour Court
Patiala on 27-9-08.
The Spokesman further said that Special Lok Adalats would be
held for all types of Civil & Criminal Cases at Ropar on 23-8-08;
Jalandhar on 30-8-08; Ludhiana on 13-9-08 and Patiala on 27-9-08.
Adding further he said that the main objective of the Lok Adalats
was to dispose of litigation on the spot and make it hassle free.
It also saved the precious time and money spent on the litigating
The spokesman said that this authority was constituted on 20-2-1998
and since then till date, the Authority has organized 4653 Lok
Adalats in which 6,94,016 cases were taken up, out of which 3,83,363
cases were mutually settled and the parties were awarded compensation
to the tune of Rs.1114, 45,23,921. He further said that from 1998
to the financial year 2007-08 legal aid was provided to 31,278
persons which includes 3846 persons belonging to ST/SC community,
15693 persons in custody, 3879 women and children and 7860 poor
CHIEF MINISTER OFFICE PUNJAB PUNJAB CM
CALLS FOR A CULTURE OF CONSCIOUS, CORDIALITY AND UNDERSTANDING'
AMONG POLITICAL PARTIES
JALANDHAR/ PHAGWARA JULY 6
Ajit Kanwal Singh Hamdard
The Punjab Chief Minister Mr. Parkash Singh Badal today called
for 'a culture of conscious, cordiality and understanding' among
Mr. Badal strongly decried 'the growing trends towards political
confrontation, as witnessed in Punjab in recent years' and said
that 'the creative energies' of the people, the politicians and
the government must never be frittered away in futile enmities
amongst leaders. The Chief Minister was addressing a gathering
at a function organised by Shri Ram Navmi Utsav Committee, Jalandhar
to honour the representatives of various Ram Lila and Dussehra
Committees of the state here this after noon.
Mr. Badal said that the tendency among some political leaders
to place personal agenda alone people's welfare had already resulted
in considerable wastage of national time and energy and it is
time to get back to an atmosphere where personal relations are
befit free from political differences.
The Chief Minister also called for the consolidation of the
atmosphere of peace and communal harmony in the state and work
with full dedication to strengthen the bonds of brotherhood between
all sections of the society to begin an era of world's exemplary
peace, amity and multi dimensional growth in the country.
The Chief Minister said that Lord Sri Ram had showed us the path
of ideal and virtuous living to carve out a prosperous and harmonious
society. He said that to bring 'Ram Raj' back every one should
follow the teachings of Lord Sri Ram in the real spirit, which
were still relevant in the present materialistic society besides
redeeming the mankind from the yoke of evils. He said that pious
occasions like Ramnaumi, and Dussehra not only promote a sense
of communal harmony and mutual understanding amongst the people
but also showers joy and prosperity on them. He also appealed
the people to celebrate these sacred days in unison and with religious
fervour and gaiety rising above the petty considerations of caste,
creed and religion.
Earlier, Mr. Badal paid obeisance to Lord Sri Ram by lighting
a holy lamp in front of Lord Sri Rama's portrait and honoured
the representatives of various Ram Lila and Dussehra Committees
of the state. On this occasion Mr. Vijay Chopra, Chief Editor,
Hind Samachar Group of News Papers presented a memento to the
Amongst others who attended the function included Medical Education
Minister Mr. Tiksan Sood, Revenue Minister Mr. Ajit Singh Kohar,
Transport Minister Master Mohan Lal, Technical Education Minister
Chaudhary Swarna Ram, Media Advisor to the Chief Minister Mr.
Harcharan Bains, Mr. Swarn Singh Phillour and Mr. Avinash Chander
both Chief Parliamentary Secretary, Mr. Balramji Dass Tandon,
Mr. Kamal Chaudhary, Mr. Maninder Singh Bitta former Minister
and Mr. Iqbal Singh former Member Parliament beside former leader
of the opposition Mrs. Rajinder Kaur Bhattal and Baba Kashmira