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As a part of a significant drive to put the major Punjab towns into the global orbit, the Punjab Chief Minister Mr. Parkash Singh Badal today unfolded a Rs. 250 crore development package for the historic city of Patiala, covering the entire spectrum of infrastructure transformation and upgrading the crucial sectors of basic amenities like supply of clean drinking water, road infrastructure, sewerage and sanitation.

Mr. Badal, who was here on a day long Sangat Darshan programme, declared that similar development initiatives would also be launched in other major cities that required immediate attention, including the neighboring district of Sangrur and the twin hubs of Doaba, the Jalandhar and Hoshiarpur districts .

Mr. Badal launched his first phase of Sangat Darshan Programe from ward no. 1 of Patiala and covered other nine wards by the evening and disbursed approximately Rs. 20 Crore for the various development works. apart from this Rs. 117 crore and Rs. 100 crore for revamping the Electricity supply system and Sewerage in the city .

While listening to the grievances of residents of Patiala, the Chief Minister today openly declared that he would adopt Patiala to be developed as an ultra modern city because the development of this historic city had been blatantly ignored by the previous congress regime. He said the former Chief Minister Capt. Amarinder Singh had hardly spared five minutes during his five year tenure to listen the woes of the residents of Patiala , his own constituency. Mr. Badal said that he was pained to listen from the people that their wards had been devoid of basic amenities and civic infrastructure like roads, street lighting, drinking water, Sewerage and pavements. Mr. Badal made it clear that now a comprehensive blue print of the development plan of Patiala city would be prepared and the work estimates would be thoroughly checked by a team of experts headed by Technical Advisor to Punjab Government Lt. Gen. (Retd.) B.S. Dhaliwal and Chief Engineers (Quality Control ) from PWD (B & R) and Mandi Board so that the entire schemes and projects could be implemented efficiently with in a stipulated time schedule. He said the main objective of his today's visit was mainly focused to initiate development programs in the city sans any political motive behind it.

A large number of local residents representing all section of society came to highlight their problems and raise demands on the collective as well as individual basis.. The Chief Minister directed the senior officers of different departments to sort out each and every problem brought into his notice at once.

Regarding the complaints related with the issuing of Blue Cards under Atta-Dal scheme launched by Punjab Government to supply Wheat and Dal at subsidized rates for the poor families, Mr. Badal announced that a fresh survey would be conducted soon in the state by organizing camps at ward levels. He advised the people and the officers to register only eligible beneficiaries under this scheme; otherwise the benefit of this scheme would not percolate down the line to benefit the poor families for whom the scheme was actually meant for. He further informed that similar survey for old age pension and other social schemes would also be conducted soon to the advantage of eligible beneficiaries.

He also announced that Rs. 8.50 crore would be spent to provide free domestic electricity connection for one bulb to the economically weaker sections of the society including installation of meter, the charges of which would be actually borne by the PSEB. Beside a sum of Rs. 5 crore would be spent for the up gradation and beautification of the parks in Patiala . Mr. Badal also announced a grant of Rs. 50 lac for the development of local police line in response to the demand raised by few Police personnel.

It may be recalled that Chief Minister handed over the cheques of Rs. 1.51 crore for Ward No. 1 , , Rs 2.16 Crore for Ward No. 2 , Rs 1.25 Crore for Ward No. 3, Rs 2.75 Crore for Ward No. 4, Rs. 1.51 crore for Ward No. 5, Rs. 2 crore for Ward No. 6, Rs. 2.15 crore for Ward No. 7, Rs. 1.50 Crore for Ward No. 8, Rs. 1.57 Crore for Ward No. 9 and Rs. 1.75 Crore for Ward No. 10 to the respected Councilors of the wards.

On this occasion Mr. Badal was accompanied by Senior Akali leaders Chief parliamentary Secretary Mr. Raj Khurana, President NRI wing SAD Mr. Surjit Singh Rakhra, SAD General Secretary Prof. Prem Singh Chandumajara, Vice President SAD Balwinder Singh Saifdipur, former SGPC President Prof. Kirpal Singh Baduangar, Ex Minister Mr. Surjit Singh Kohli, Mayor Ajit Pal Singh Kohli, Ex Chairman SS Board Tejinderpal Singh Sandhu, District SAD President (Urban) Indermohan Singh Bajaj, District President BJP (Urban) Balwant Rai, President SOI Mr. Gurpreet Singh Raju Khanna, Commissioner Municipal Corporation SK Ahaluwalia ,Deputy Commissioner Mr. Vikas Garg, DIG Patiala Range Mr. PS Gill and SSP Patiala Mr. S.K Asthana besides party leaders and workers SAD & BJP.


CHANDIGARH: Sept 14, 2008

Quoting the Supreme Court judgment of September 11 which categorically described record tampering as "crime worse than murder", the Senior Punjab minister and Shiromani Akali Dal General Secretary Captain Kanwaljit Singh today asked the disgraced former Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh to stop taking shelter behind technical issues and confront the charges regarding his involvement in the Rs 360 crore Amritsar Improvement trust scam.

Ironically, the apex court passed this judgment "on the same day the former CM was expelled from the Punjab Vidhan Sabha following his severe indictment by the Special House Committee in the Amritsar land scam and the subsequent tampering of the records of the Vidhan Sabha. The Supreme Court cancelled the bail of the billionaire Ansal Brothers, sending them to jail for committing the high crime of tampering with records.

Captain Kanwaljit Singh said that Amarinder should not fail to notice the strong irony of the timing of the Supreme Court on record tampering and the decision of the Punjab Vidhan Sabha expelling him from the House should not be lost on the disgraced former Chief Minister.

Both judgments came at exactly 4.20 PM on the same day (Wednesday). The SC verdict also makes mockery of Amarinder's claims that the issue involved mere technicalities. " The SC verdict clearly shows that the former Chief Minister is guilty of a crime worse than murder. As executive chief, he murdered honesty, public trust, the dignity of the House and democratic instititutions. His hands are soaked with blood, "said the Akali leader in a hard hitting statement here.

It may be recalled that, in its judgment on Wednesday in the Ansal brothers case, the Supreme Court said: "Tampering with judicial records is a crime worse than murder or dacoity." With these words, the apex court cancelled the bail of Sushil and Gopal Ansal, owners of Uphaar cinema where 59 cinegoers were killed in a fire tragedy in 1997. "Amarinder Singh and the Congress party should now realise the gravity of the crime involved that was a precursor to the inquiry which the House launched and reached its logical conclusion, coincidentally on the same day and hour as the Supreme Court did.

"So the message from the seats of justice is clear: those who thwart the course of investigation shall not be allowed to go scot free. If Amarinder Singh refuses to learn from the Punjab Assembly's decision, he should at least pay heed to the message from the highest court of the country, unless he thinks of Moti Bagh Patiala as a sovereign entity devoted to the cause of the corrupt and the debauch," said the Punjab Co-operation Minister.

"It is surprising that at a time when the much respected Speaker of the Lok Sabha, Mr Somnath Chatterjee, is leading a debate to strengthen parliamentary democracy, a disgraced and expelled MLA is asking the judiciary to quash his expulsion ordered by the House."

"Amarinder Singh seems to have a funny idea that the House cannot decide whether tempering with its records and bringing serious disrepute to its business of law making should deserve a response by the House," Captain Kanwaljit Singh said.

The SAD General Secretary said that it was strange that Amarinder Singh has asked the Punjab and Haryana High Court for relief after his expulsion from the Assembly but has still not denied that the records of the House were indeed tempered to escape any inquiry into the land scam. Nor has this fact been denied by even the Congress In fact, the Leader of the Opposition Rajinder Kaur Bhattal even spared the services of three MLAs of the Congress to help probe the matter and find out who was to benefit from the tempering. The House Committee, Mr. Badal clearly inquired into the matter to fix responsibility for the record tamepering, at whose instance it was done and who were its principal beneficiaries. "

The Akali General Secretary further said that no one should be allowed to use the slogan of vendetta as a camouflage for corrupt deals. "Crying vendetta is one thing, but Amarinder Singh is now down to perpetrating lies. While he is asking for relief on the basis that his actions of exempting the land and causing crores of loss to the state was taken as an executive head of the government, he needs to explain to the people of Punjab which capacity as member of the executive or of the house exempts him from action for tampering with sacred records of the august house. He said the Akali Dal can understand the alacrity and haste with which Amarinder Singh rushed to seek relief as he well knows that in these times of Right to Information, hundreds of citizens will be asking the Congress High Command the basis on which Amarinder Singh continued to be a member of the party.He said the Vidhan Sabha, the civil society and the people of Punjab must take notice of those who are accusing the collective wisdom of the House as being a "premeditated conspiracy".

Ignorance of law is no excuse for those who commit contempt. As for those who try to cause tempering of the records, the Supreme Court has already explained it well," he said.



The Punjab Governor and Administrator, Union Territory, Chandigarh, Gen. (Retd.) S.F. Rodrigues, PVSM VSM, has expressed shock and profound grief over the loss of many lives in the serial blasts in the national Capital, New Delhi, last evening.

General Rodrigues said that there is no place for violence in a democratic society and such ugly happenings aiming to disturb peace and tranquility need condemnation by all right thinking people. He conveyed his heartfelt sympathies to the members of bereaved families and wished a speedy recovery, of the injured in this unfortunate incident.





Daily Punjab press release