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Punjab News: 2011


Punjab EstablishesProtection Home/Centres for Inter-caste
Marriage Couples at District Level

Chandigarh, March 24:

In order to prevent honour killing, the Punjab Government has established protection Homes/Centres at district level to provide protection to the inter-caste newly married couples.

Disclosing this here today a spokesman of Home Affairs & Justice Department Punjab said that such protections Homes/Centres have been established at Barnala, Gurdaspur & SAS Nagar (three in each district), five in Mansa, four in Hoshiarpur, two in each Faridkot & Shaheed Bhagat Singh Nagar districts and one each in other districts under the supervision of respective Deputy Commissioners.

The spokesman further said that where newly wedded couples felt their life and property was in danger; Punjab Government would provide security at reasonable cost besides boarding and lodging to secure life and liberty of these couples for a period of six weeks after their marriages in this protection Homes/Centres..

He further said that such couples might be given protection by giving application in the court of District Registrar who might recommend adequate security to Deputy Commissioner or head of police force. He advised the such newly wedded couples to contact with their respective Deputy Commissioners or Senior Superintendents of Police at any time for any kind of help in this regard.


Punjab Govt. commits for the welfare of Ex-Servicemen - Capt. Bath

Chandigarh, March 24,

Punjab Government is fully committed for the welfare of ex-servicemen and would continuously work for their welfare. This assurance was given by Capt. Balbir Singh Bath, Defence Welfare Minister, Punjab in the inaugural Zonal Meeting of Rajya Sainik Board of Northern Indian States comprising of Punjab, J& K, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Delhi, Chandigarh, Uttrakhand and Uttar Pradesh here today.

Addressing the meeting at Punjab Sainik Bhavan here today Mr. Bath said that it was a honour of Punjab to host this first meeting. He said that Punjab had been the Sword Arm of the country and was proud of its sacrifices in defence of our Motherland. He said that Punjab had over three lakh Ex-servicemen/Widows and taking into account the serving Soldiers and their dependents the population size was over 16 lakhs.

He said that I had set about meeting Ex-servicemen (ESM) and Widows district wise to reach out and address their grievances. He said that challenges were many but we shall leave no stone unturned to ensure the resettlement of Ex-servicemen and the well being of this disciplined community of Punjabis.

The Minister further said that Kendriya Sainik Board (KSB) on its part must get the Union Government to resolve the long outstanding issue of 'One Rank One Pension' and further the case of lateral absorption of Soldiers into the Para Military Forces and State police. He said that in Punjab we were in the process of recruiting 1600 Ex-servicemen for taking over the security related duties from the State Police. He said that there was also a need for the KSB to look at the various Central Schemes that benefit the ESM.

Prominent among others who were present in the meeting included Secretary Punjab Sainik Welfare Mr. Jagjit Puri, Director Punjab Sainik Welfare Brig. (Retd.) Inderjit Singh Gakhal, Secretary K.S.B Brig. Sudhir Uppal, Maj. Gen. (Retd.) V.K. Jain Director Punjab Sainik Welfare Uttar Pradesh, Brig. (Retd.) R.S. Langeh Director Punjab Sainik Welfare J&K, Brig. (Retd.) J.S. Dulal, Secretary R.S.B Haryana, G.P Capt. (Retd.) R.K. Sharma Secretary R.S.B Delhi, Lt. Col. (Retd.) R.K. Singh District Sainik Board Chandigarh (UT), Maj. (Retd) J.S Puria Deputy Director RSB Himachal Pradesh, Maj. (Retd.) B.S. Negi, Deputy Director RSB Uttrakhand.


New Delhi/Chandigarh, March 24 :

Shiromani Akali Dal today lodged a strong protest on deliberate and repeated harassment of Sikhs especially International Golfer Jeev Milkha Singh’s coach Amritinder Singh at Milan Airport in Italy and submitted a memorandum to Ambassador of Italy seeking strict action against security officials responsible for it.

A high level delegation of Members of Parliament of Shiromani Akali Dal today met Excellency the Ambassador of Italy Giacomo Sanfelice Di Monteforte at New Delhi to register strong protest of the Sikh Community over the recent incidents of removal of turban of Golfer Jeev Milkha Singh’s Coach Amritinder Singh and stressed the need to sensitize the Italian government officials including security officials about Sikhs

Led by S. Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa, Dr. Rattan Singh Ajnala and S. Harsimrat Kaur Badal, Mr. Naresh Gujaral and other Members of Parliament of SAD, a memorandum was submitted to the Italian Ambassador in this regard

The delegation impressed upon Ambassador that there was strong outrage in the Sikh community over the intolerable way Sikhs were being treated at airports in Italy by airport officials. They informed the Ambassador that the repeated incident that happened to Sardar Amritinder Singh, Coach of Golfer Jeev Milkha Singh at Milan Airport, not once but twice, was a stark example how Sikhs were being treated at airports in Italy. They informed the Ambassador that Coach Amritinder Singh had specifically told the security officials that as per the International Law, turban cannot be removed, but the security officials told him if he wanted to enter the country he would have to take off his turban.

SAD MPs said that this behavior was unacceptable to the Sikh community as turban was the most recognizable feature of a Sikh. They informed that unlike other head coverings it was an inextricable part of the Sikh identity and was worn by Sikhs at all times to cover their unshorn hair, a mandatory article of their faith.

They informed that the turban was unshakeable commitment of Sikhs to the mission given to all Sikhs by the Gurus – to stand firm against tyranny and protecting the downtrodden. Turban is part of our being. “You may take off my head but not my turban” has been the reaction of Sikhs who were subjected to the tyrannical rules and they happily gave supreme sacrifices than to give up their turban, they informed.

The SAD MPs protested that to ask a Sikh to remove his turban was in fact committing an atrocity on him, and all over the world Sikhs in one voice have stood up to call this an act of great violence and cruelty on Sikhs.
The MPs impressed upon Ambassador that the incident was widely reported in media and it outraged the Sikh community in India and worldwide and We all the Members of Parliament also raised the issue in the Parliament after which an apology was received by the Government of India issued by Italian Government.

Lodging the strong protesr they said that our strong protests and condemnation may be conveyed to the Highest Authority in the Italian Government to ensure that in future such unwarranted incidents do not recur and government officials as well others should be sensitized about Sikhs.

The delegation comprised of S. Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa, Dr. Rattan Singh Ajnala, S. Harsimrat Kaur Badal, Bibi Paramjit Kaur Gulshan, S. Balwinder Singh Bhunder Shri Naresh Gujral, and S.Sher Singh Ghubaya




Punjab Chief Minister Mr. Parkash Singh Badal today blamed the Congress led UPA government at Centre for rampant corruption, inflation, illiteracy, poverty and unemployment for its ill-conceived policies which had put the Indian economy at the brink of disaster thereby shattering the dreams of Shaheed-e-Azam Bhagat Singh and his co patriots Rajguru and Sukhdev.

Paying rich tributes on the martyrdom day of Shaheed-e-Azam Bhagat Singh, Rajguru and Sukhdev at the state level Shaheedi function here today, Mr. Badal said that innumerable freedom fighters and unsung heroes laid down their lives during the Independence movement, of which more than 80% belonged to Punjab. He said “It is our pious
duty to nurture the spirit of nationalism amongst our youth through the commemoration of such occasions in a befitting manner to pay homage to these great martyrs and patriots who made selfless sacrifices to make India free from the foreign yoke".

The Chief Minister bemoaned that even after 63 years of freedom, our governments had not been able to provide the basic civic amenities to a common man what to talk of tall claims like high growth rate and national Gross Domestic Product. He said that our freedom fighters had laid down their lives for the welfare of our countrymen but it was the irony of fate that their aspirations had not yet been cherished because they dreamt of an Independent India free from the maladies of
illiteracy, unemployment and starvation. He however, said that martyrs were not merely restricted to any region, religion and faith rather they belonged to one and all irrespective of caste, colour and creed.

Taking a swipe at the Congress, Mr. Badal said that the Congress and corruption were the two sides of the same coin. He ridiculed Congress for paralyzing the entire democratic system through illegal and unlawful practices. Citing the examples of infamous alleged scam of Rs.1.76 lac crore 2G spectrum, Common Wealth Games scandal worth Rs.8000 crore and the Adarsh Housing scam, Mr. Badal said that scam after scam in the Congress led UPA government had exposed its real face as its allies had also accused it now for the unprecedented corruption
Accusing the Central Government for meting out a step motherly treatment to the state governments, Mr.Badal said that the remote control was with Delhi and states had always to look upon them even for their justified demands and grants. He said that states had virtually no powers with them and were dependent on the Center even
for petty matters. He underscored the need to conceptualize a
Central plan exclusively for the welfare of the under privileged sections of the society besides redefining the central state relations in the changed scenario and casting a true federal structure to secure state's participation in the national development process.

The Chief Minister said that the SAD-BJP government since its inception had taken several initiatives for the overall development of the state and the welfare of people. He said that SAD being a party of a common man concerned with the people at a grass root levels and committed to serve them in the right earnest. He said that our government had taken various measures to ensure overall development and progress in the areas of power, industry, agriculture, education, infrastructure and health care. He reiterated that with our concerted efforts Punjab would soon emerge as a front-runner state in the country. He said that the previous Congress governments did not plead the state’s case at Centre in right earnest which ultimately retarded development in the state.

Paying homage to the Shaheed Bhagat Singh Rajguru and Sukhdev, the Deputy Chief Minister Mr. Sukhbir Singh Badal said that Shiromani Akali Dal had a rich legacy of selfless sacrifices for the welfare of the mankind for over past 90 years. He said that Shaheed-e-Azam Bhagat Singh, Rajguru and Sukhdev had vowed to free their motherland from the clutches of British imperialism and they succeeded in their mission. He said that our youth should derive inspiration from their self sacrifices in order to inculcate a sense of patriotism amongst themselves.

Outlining the new initiatives’ taken by the SAD-BJP government aimed at the empowerment of women, Mr. Sukhbir Singh Badal said that the new schemes like free education and bicycles to the girl students studying in class XI and XII, Babe Nanaki Ladli Beti scheme of giving grant of Rs. 15000 at the time of birth of girl child, extension of shagun scheme of Rs.15000 to the backward classes and economically weaker sections of the society had been introduced in the budget 2011-12. He also declared that the state’s economy had undergone complete transformation and Punjab was all set for economic resurgence. He said that the development seen in the state over the past four years has no parallel in the history of the state and its financial position was looking far healthier than what we inherited it from the previous Congress governments.

Dwelling on the overall development in the state the Deputy Chief Minister said that his government had initiated many power projects with generation capacity of 12000 MW, four universities, 17 new colleges, 8 polytechnics, 15 new model schools besides record recruitment of 35000 school teachers and 70000 persons in various departments. He pointed out that Rs.150 crore had been earmarked for the promotion of sports and youth activities in the current budget.
Taking a dig at his younger cousin and former Finance Minister Mr. Manpreet Singh, Mr. Sukhbir Singh Badal said that he (Mampreet Singh) was shouting from the top of the roof that the subsidies in the terms of the free power to the farmers and other welfare schemes like old age pension, shagun, atta dal should be discontinued to put the states derailed economy back on track, however, my brother has forgotten that he was propagating all this against the basic pro-poor and farmer ideology of Shiromani Akali Dal of which he was a member. He also accused Manpreet for deviating from the philosophy of Shaheed Bhagat Singh through his campaign Jago Punjab despite the fact he vyes for the martyr in his rhetoric’s.
Justifying the rationale behind the debt burden on the states, Mr.Sukhbir Singh Badal said that Punjab was no exception while he gave debt amount for many other states like UP (Rs.2.21 crore), Maharastra (Rs.2.05 crore), West Bengal (Rs.1.05 crore), Andhra Pradesh (Rs.1.26 crore) whereas Punjab had a debt burden of just Rs.59000 crore.
Speaking on the occasion former National President of BJP Mr. Rajnath Singh lauded the role of Punjab Chief Minister Mr. Parkash Singh Badal for championing the cause of farmers and unprivileged sections of the society, which was the real tribute to the martyrs of our country like Shaheed Bhagat Singh, Rajguru and Sukhdev. He accused the Congress governments for exploiting the poor peasantry for its narrow vested interest and said the contribution of farming community in general and of Punjabi farmer in particular could not be ignored at any cost. He urged the Centre to declare agriculture as a national occupation and also dedicate a special TV channel for the farmers, poor and villages to enable them to contribute enormously in the economic development of the country. He said that the supreme sacrifices made by our martyrs for the cause of freedom of the country would ever act as a source of inspirations for our future generations.
In his address the former Chief Minister of Himachal Pradesh Mr. Shanta Kumar lamented that the philosophy of the Shaheed Bhagat Singh had not been projected by the Congress in a right perspective due to its political compulsions. He said that Congress had always propagated that India got independence due to the philosophy of non violence as preached by the father of the nation Mahatma Gandhi where as the mutiny of 1857 was a testimony to the India’s freedom struggle in which over one lac precious livers were lost and even Bhagat Singh had to demonstrate to the British and millions of Indians that freedom could not only be achieved through non-violent means.

Earlier Chief Minister Punjab Mr. Badal also honoured Bibi Manjula Toor grand daughter of Mr. Babbar Singh the cousin of Shaheed Bhagat Singh and Mr. Vinod Thapar Nephew of Sukhdev and other freedom fighters from SBS Nagar.
Prominent among others who were present on the occasion included Mr. Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa, Mr. Balwinder Singh Bhundar, (Both M.Ps), Mr. Manoranjan Kalia, Dr. Upinderjit Kaur, Mr. Ranjit Singh Barahampura, Mr. Sucha Singh Langah, Ch. Swarana Ram, Mr. Tikshan Sood, Mr. Sewa Singh Sekhwan, Master Mohan Lal, Mrs. Lakshmi Kanta Chawla, Mr. Janmeja Singh Sekhon, Mr Gulzar Singh Ranike, Capt. Balbir Singh Bath, Mr. Hira Singh Gabaria (all cabinet ministers), Mr. Charanjit Singh Atwal former Deputy Speaker Lok Sabha, Dr. Daljit Singh Cheema, Mr.
Harcharan Bains, Chief Parliamentary Secretaries, Shiromani Committee Members, Akali Dal and BJP office bearers were also present on the occasion.


Punjab Government has decided to give the additional five marks to rural candidates for the direct recruitmen


Punjab Government has decided to give the additional five marks to rural candidates for the direct recruitment in its all Departments, Corporations and Boards. A letter in this regard has been issued by the government today.
Disclosing this here today a spokesman of Punjab Government said that this decision has been taken according the order of Punjab and Haryana High Court in the civil writ petition of Sudesh Rani V/S Punjab State.

It is mentioned here that Punjab and Haryana High Court gave the its verdict in the said case that "consequently, we are of the view that the weightage of 5 additional marks to rural students is fully justified in the facts and circumstances of the case and is not only permitted by the decision of the Supreme Court in Kailash Chand Sharma's case (supra) but the study of the Punjabi university also fulfills the requirements for such weightage set out in the said judgement.", added the spokesman.


Chandigarh, March 21:

More than 70000 police personnel of Punjab Government got a Holi Bonanza as the Punjab Government approved cash less insurance scheme for them as well as their families and dependents, replacing the cumbersome medical reimbursement scheme.

According to an official spokesman in a first of initiative of its own kind in the country each personnel has been insured for Rs. 2 Lakh per year and this insurance would also cover surgeries having less than 24 hour hospitalization in the cases of Dialysis, Chemotherapy, Radiotherapy, Eye Surgery, Lithotripsy, Tonsillectomy and Coronary Angiography. The spokesman clarified that despite this cash less insurance cover each police personnel would continue to get monthly fixed medical allowance as per existing norms. The spokesman said that the Punjab Government has already sanctioned Rs. 25 crore for this scheme and Punjab Police has already invited expression of interest from reputed insurance companies to handle this gigantic task. He further said that the selected insurance company would be responsible for providing and implementing a Health Insurance cover against treatment requiring indoor hospitalization and other listed ailments on cashless basis to the serving 70000 plus employees of Punjab Police Personnel and their family members including dependent parents of the employee. The insurer would be required to form a network of hospitals across the State of Punjab & Chandigarh in particular and in India in general with at least two panel hospitals in each district. It would be imperative for the insurance company that leading Super Specialty Hospitals at all Districts Headquarters for e.g: Fortis Hospital in S.A.S Nagar, Escorts Hospital in Amritsar, DMC Hospital in Ludhiana etc, should form part of the list of the panel hospitals being submitted for the purpose. The spokesman added that all serving employees of the Punjab Police Department & their dependent family members would be required to be covered on compulsory basis. The family would consist of the spouse of the employee, two dependent children & dependent parents of the employee. Besides this, the expenses incurred 30 days prior to the date of admission and 60 days from the date of discharged would also be payable pertaining to the hospitalization one has under gone.


Punjab Government has given performa promotions to 9 IPS Officer in the rank of Deputy inspector General of police.
Disclosing this here today a spokesman of the Punjab said that 7 officers included Sarvshri Sudhanshu S Srivastava, Parveen Kumar Sinha, B.Chandra Sekhar, Amardeep Singh Rai, Neerja V, Anita Punj, Kapil Dev have been promoted in the rank of Deputy Inspector General of police. These proforma promotions have been given w.e.f 04.08.2010 from the date of their junior's promotions whereas 2 officers- Sh. Amit Prasad,IPS and G.Nageshwara Raoi, IPS has been promoted in the rank of Deputy Inspector General of police w.e.f 30.08.2010 from the date of their junior's promotions and a notification has been issued in this regard, added the spokesman.



Punjab Chief Minister Mr. Parkash Singh Badal today strongly pleaded for establishing true federal structure with more powers and financial

autonomy to the states as it was practically impossible to achieve overall development and progress in true perspective.
Addressing a massive religious congregation on the historic occasion of annual Holla Mohalla festival on the 'birth place of Khalsa' here after paying obeisance at Gurdwara Takhat Sri Keshgarh Sahib, Mr.Badal said that the existing unitary system of Government provided meager resources at the disposal of State Governments and virtually reduced them to the level of dignified municipalities which led to the poverty, economic backwardness and illiteracy in the country. This kind of discrimination with the states must end for ensuring speedy growth and development of the country as a whole, he added.
Lashing at the Congress government in Centre for its apathetic and discriminatory attitude towards Punjab, Mr. Badal said that it had always betrayed the state on every front, be it agriculture, industry and even on the infrastructure development. He said that Central policies were inimical for the interests of Punjab and they deliberately devised stringent parameters for the eligibility of the centrally sponsored schemes and grants. He however, said that the Centre merely showed lip service to our hard working Punjabi farmers for their contribution in the national food pool but never bothered to make a substantial hike in Minimum Support Price (MSP) in view of ever increasing costs of agricultural inputs including diesel, fertilizers and pesticides.
Mr. Badal further said that the Sikhs would not tolerate any sort of high handedness in their religious affairs by the Congress as its leadership had always instigating the Sikh community to divide them to take over the control of SGPC. He categorically said that the Congress party would never succeed in its nefarious designs to capture the SGPC. Mr. Badal said it was not only astonishing but also ironical that Congress which claimed to be a secular party was deliberately encroaching upon the jurisdiction of Sikh religious matters by indirectly lending support to Sarna & Co. in the SGPC elections.

Referring to the status of Punjab economy, Mr. Badal said that it was quite comfortable as SAD-BJP government had enhanced the income three
times in the State through healthy financial management and the developmental process was in full swing. He said that State economy had suffered a major set back due to debt burden put by the Centre pertaining to the period of militancy. The Punjab Government fought against terrorism thus serving the national cause and the Centre Government extended no help, he lamented. Mr. Badal thanked the former Prime Minister Mr. IK Gujral for this debt waiver on his personal request.
To perpetuate the rich legacy of our cultural heritage amongst our younger generations, the state government has already made and endeavour to construct three historic memorials at a cost of Rs. 95 crore at Chappar Chiri in SAS Nagar, Chak Abdalwari in Gurdaspur and Kup Rohira in Sangrur district to commemorate the victory of Sirhind by the legendary Sikh warrior Baba Banda Singh Bahadur and in the memory of Wadda and Chhota Ghallughara martyrs respectively. Mr. Badal also mentioned that Rs.100 crore had already been spent on the upgradation & development of various projects in Sri Anandpur Sahib as a part of the tercentenary celebrations of Gurta Gaddi Diwas. A sum of Rs. 18 crore has been spent on the holy Ram Tirath Temple of Bhagwan Valmiki ji in Amritsar for its beautification. The government has decided to construct a world-class memorial at a cost of Rs. 10 crore at village Khuralgarh in Hoshiarpur district to pay tributes to Sri Guru Ravi Dass ji. Besides, the Government has also undertaken a comprehensive plan to develop village Ghuman in Gurdaspur district associated with Bhagat Naamdev ji. Likewise, Bhagwan Parshuram Taposthal was also being developed at village Khatti in Shaheed Bhagat Singh Nagar to pay respect to Bhagwan Parshuram ji. A Rs. 70 crore project of Golden Temple Entrance Plaza was in the advanced stage of implementation and rapid transport system was also being introduced in Amritsar shortly to enable the devotees to pay obeisance at Golden Temple in a hassle free manner. Naina Devi temple was being connected with Sri Anandpur Sahib through ropeway to facilitate the pilgrims to visit the holy temple.

Mr. Badal also said that our government had already spent Rs. 148 crore to ensure better civic amenities in the 11 religious towns namely, Dera Baba Nanak, Sri Chamkaur Sahib, Sultanpur Lodhi, Tarn Taran, Sri Hargobindpur, Baba Bakala, Khadur Sahib, Goindwal Sahib, Chohla Sahib, Kiratpur Sahib and Sri Muktsar Sahib.
On the major initiative of employment generation, Mr. Badal said that the state government had so far recruited 85000 persons in various departments and the services of nearly 8000 adhoc/daily wage employees in different departments would be soon regularized.

Addressing the media persons on the sidelines of Holla Mohalla here, the Chief Minister today blamed the UPA-led Congress government for having lost confidence of the public due to rampant corruption and unlawful democratic practices especially in the wake of Wikileaks expose on the issue of alleged bribery to the MPs of opposition in the parliament to secure the trust vote in July 2008. He said that Congress and corruption were the two sides of the same coin. He said; "Congress is even worst than termite which had eaten up the entire democratic system of administration through illegal and unlawful practices thereby paralyzing the governance at all levels". Citing the examples of infamous alleged scam of Rs.1.76 lac crore 2G spectrum, Common Wealth Games scandal worth Rs.8000 crore and the Adarsh Housing scam, Mr. Badal said that scam after scam in the Congress led UPA government had exposed its real face as its allies had also accusing it for the rampant corruption.

On the turban issue, Mr. Badal said that it was not merely a religious issue but also an emotional one and sought personal intervention of Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh to immediately resolve it through using all the diplomatic channels and it was all the more important for him being a Sikh. Mr. Badal also said that he was perturbed over the incidents of Sikhs being humiliated on the pretext of security in different foreign countries and said this must come to an end and Sikhs should not be embarrassed anymore. He also said UPA Chairperson Mrs. Sonia Gandhi should also intervene to address this issue especially in her home country Italy where many Sikhs have been allegedly humiliated under the garb of security checks.
Speaking on the occasion, the Deputy Chief Minister Mr. Sukhbir Singh Badal said that the historic budget of 2011-12 was aimed at the empowerment of women. Novel schemes like free education and bicycles to the girl students studying in class XI and XII, Babe Nanaki Ladli scheme of giving grant of Rs. 15000 at the time of birth of girl child, extension of shagun scheme of Rs.15000 to the backward classes and economically weaker sections of the society upto annual income of Rs.30000 besides SCs and Christians.

Mr. Sukhbir Singh Badal also declared that the Punjab economy has undergone complete transformation and the state was poised for unprecedented economic resurgence. He said that the development seen in the state over the past four years has no parallel in the history of the state and its economic position was looking far healthier than what we inherited it from the previous Congress governments.

Dwelling on the overall development in the state the Deputy Chief Minister said that his government had initiated many power projects with generation capacity of 10000 MW, four universities, 17 new colleges, 8 polytechnics, 15 new model schools besides record recruitment of 45000 school teachers. He also mentioned that huge plans worth Rs.250 crore for up-gradation of medical & health services, Rs.400 crore medical education & research and Rs.1000 crore on strengthening of road network was under execution. He pointed out that Rs.150 crore had been earmarked for the promotion of sports and youth activities in the current budget.

Coming down heavily on the Congress Government which pushed the state into deep debt of Rs.50000 crore due to its wrong economic and financial policies, Mr. Sukhbir Singh Badal said that our government had made concerted efforts to revive the state's derailed economy through its prudent fiscal management.

The Deputy Chief Minister further said that the governance reforms initiated by the SAD-BJP government first time in the history of 63 years of independent India would ensure all the public centric services to the people in a transparent and hassle free manner.

In his address SGPC President Mr. Avtar Singh said that the stage was all set for the forth coming SGPC general elections and urged the Sikh community to beware of the tactics of Congress to divide Sikhs keeping an eye to capture the control of the SGPC. He urged the youth to wean away from the menace of drug-addiction so that their unbounded energy could be channelized in constrictive manners.

Prominent amongst others who were spoke on the occasion included SAD Secretary General and Member Rajya Sabha Mr. Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa, Advisor to Chief Minister Dr. Daljeet Singh Cheema, Chief Parliamentary Secretary Ch.Nand Lal, SAD General Secretary Mr. Prem Singh Chandumajra, MLA Sri Anandpur Sahib Sant Baba Ajit Singh, Chairman District Planning Committee Mr. Madan Mohan Mittal, SAD District President Ropar Mr. Tara Singh Ladal, Mr. Maheshinder Singh Garewal, Bibi Jagir Kaur and Bibi Satwant Kaur Sandhu (all ex-Minister), MC President Ropar Mr. Amarjit Singh Satyal, Mr. Gurinder Singh Gogi and Mr. Kashmir Singh Briar (both Member SGPC), Youth Akali Leader Mr. Harpreet Singh Basant and Mr. Parminder Pal Singh Binta.

Sukhbir said here today that Punjab has “emerged from the dark fiscal tunnel into a sunshine zone of growth,

Chandigarh March 18 –

The Punjab Deputy Chief Minister Mr. Sukhbir Singh Badal said here today that Punjab has “emerged from the dark fiscal tunnel into a sunshine zone of growth, development and prosperity”, and that dramatic turn-around in revenue generation has reduced debt to a non-issue. “To take just one example, the state’s total revenue has shot up from 36806 crore under the Congress regime to an impressive Rs. 50,485 crore in just four years and poised to touch a whopping Rs. 70890 crore at the end of this fiscal year. Thus, the mere increase brought in by us ( Rs.34084 crore) would almost equal the total revenue grossed during the five year tenure of the Congress (Rs 36806 crore)”, said Mr. Badal. Mr. Badal declared that with the economy of the state looking up, the SAD-BJP government would not only continue with its pro-people social welfare policies and subsidies to key sectors like agriculture but it will, wherever necessary, enlarge the scope of this policy, as we did in the budget by extending path breaking incentives to youth, women and economically weaker sections. The Deputy Chief Minister said that he had been stunned by their lack of moral and political commitment to the people of the state. “The Congress has abdicated its responsibility as the principal opposition party in the state. They people elect us to this august house to find solutions to their problems through productive and exhaustive discussion and brainstorming. But the issueless Congress party sought to indulge in circus tricks here and acted in a most disgraceful manner. They have forfeited their right to be called the people’s representatives,” said Mr. Sukhbir Singh Badal. Outlining the vision of the SAD-BJP government on the crucial welfare programmes as incorporated in the budget, the Deputy Chief Minister said, “we regard social security and welfare not as a dole but as an entitlement of the people, especially the weaker sections who receive these benefits not as favours but as a matter of right.” Speaking on the floor of the Punjab Vidhan Sabha on the concluding day of debate on the budget, Mr. Badal said, “The untiring efforts of the SAD-BJP govt. have begun to show phenomenal results in terms of growth. From here on, all roads in Punjab lead to development and prosperity,” he said. Mr. Badal said that the principal objective of the SAD-BJP is to make Punjab financially strong , with focus on infrastructure development, health, education, youth, women’s empowerment and uplift of the socially an d economically weaker sections. Mr. Badal said that there are five major parameters on the health of any economy: revenue generation, the ratio of fiscal and Revenue deficit, debt-to-GSDP ratio and capital expenditure. Concrete and nationally accepted data clearly shows that on all these five indicators, the performance of the SAD-BJP government far outstrips not only the performance of the full five year term of the Congress government in Punjab but also that of its government at the center. Quoting from Government of India and other records, Mr. Badal said that so much hue and cry was being raised, the debt-to-GSDP ratio in Punjab. But Government of India figures show that this ratio stood 44% in Punjab during Congress but we brought it down to 30. 43 %. He said that in this regard, the performance of the Congress government led by Dr. Manmohan Singh is dismal as the center’s debt to GSDP ratio is 50.1 %. “The Congress should stop worrying about Punjab and search its conscience how it has doomed the national economy On the issue of fiscal deficit, Punjab’s position under SAD-BJP with 3.14% is far superior to both the present Congress govt. at the center ( 5.1%) and the previous Congress govt. in Punjab (5.35 %). Similarly, we have brought down revenue deficit from 4.56 % under the Amarinder government to just 1.33 percent in 2010-11. Even here, we stand above the Congress govt. at the center ( 2.3 %) Giving details of the performance of the government on the economic front, Mr. Badal said it was a measure of the govt.’s sound fiscal management that the average revenue debt has been brought down from 2.91 % during the Congress regime to 2.06 per cent now. Similarly, the fiscal deficit is down from average 4.19% to 3.14% in 2010-11. Not only that, the state saw an unprecedented growth in the critical area of capital expenditure which rose almost by 100% , from Rs. 5946.56 crore in the five years of Congress rule to 11245.37 crore in just four years, and is set to grow further to Rs 16663.71 crore. These, said Mr. Badal, are cardinal indicators of a growing economy and reflect overall development. Elaborating his view, he said, “Our general growth rate as well as revenue growth are dramatically up and the debt-to-GSDP ratio has gone down. The revenue receipts of the state has almost doubled, going dramatically up from Rs. 9017.26 crore under the Congress regime in 2006-07 to Rs.17395.74 crore this year and is projected to touch Rs. 20407.70 crore by the end of this fiscal year,” said Mr. Badal. Describing the budget as “a historic milestone in the progress of the state”, Mr. Badal said it presented a holistic approach towards economic sustainability, revenue generation, health, education, infrastructure development, power, global connectivity, productive engagement of youth, social security as entitlement, women empowerment, governance reforms and other key spheres like agriculture, irrigation, environment and rural and urban development. (Please see annexure)-----


Punjab Government directs to stop honor killings

Chandigarh, March 18:

The Punjab Government has issued directions to stop honour killings in the state. Disclosing this here today a spokesman of the Punjab government said that the fresh directions and guidelines have been sent to the Deputy Commissioners, Magistrates and Senior Superintendent of police for strict compliance.

According to the spokesman the threatening attitude of the parents/relatives in the wake inter-caste marriages by their children and subsequently disrupting the law and order situation would be dealt with firmly. The security would be extended to such couples till they feel safe.

Adding further he said that the protection centers set up would facilitate the young married couples with boarding and lodging for a period of six weeks after their marriage. Such couples would be given protection after submission of an application in the court of district Registrar. The SSP would ensure adequate security to the couples concerned.
As per the fresh guidelines, the mediation/counseling cells would be set up in the offices of commissioners/SSPs. Gram Panchayats in villages and special cells in the cities be cancelled to prevail upon the parents/relatives to reconcile to the married couples and not to take their step of marrying out of caste as a threat to their or family's honour.
The spokesman further said that the respect of their decision of marrying out of caste and region to life and liberty of such couples would be ensured failing which could give rise to create turmoil in the society. False cases should not be registered at the behalf of the parents/ relatives u/s 363/366/376 of IPC against such couples who are adults and can take their own independent decisions. However, the police should strictly handle the cases where involved couples were minors, he added.

It was also directed that the cases of threats given to such couples prompting them to separate would be strictly curbed and action would be taken against the guilty.

Clarifying further, he said that though the liberty of citizens is to be respected but at the same time virtues like morality, law, justice and common good should not be overlooked for the orderly progress and social stability.
The issue of forms and necessary registration of all marriages is under active consideration of the government.
It is worth mentioning that the fresh guidelines in this regard had been given after the directions of the hon'ble Punjab and Haryana High Court in the CWP Asha v/s State of Haryana and others regarding honour killing.


Chandigarh, March 18:

Member Parliament Harsimrat Kaur Badal whose discussion on ‘SITUATION ARISING OUT OF THE MASS GRAVE AND MASS KILLINGS OF SIKHS DURING 1984 IN HAUND CHILLAR VILLAGE, DISTRICT REWARI, HARAYNA’ was listed under rule 193 has been postponed to next week.

The Discussion under rule 193 was listed today after the Calling Attention Motion that was to be raised by Smt. Sushma Swaraj. But the preceding Calling Attention Motion was not taken up by the Lok Sabha amidst uproar about the Wikileaks Exposure raised by Smt. Sushma Swaraj in the morning demanding statement of the Prime Minister. After which the House was adjourned till 12:15 PM to be again adjourned till 2:00 PM for the Statement of the Prime Minister, just after that the House was adjourned again till 3:30 PM for Private Members Business.

Harsimrat Kaur Badal and her party MPs, Dr. Rattan Singh Ajnala, Bibi Paramjit Kaur Gulshan and Sher Singh Ghubaya were seen raising slogans and showing the photographs of the Sikh families killed during 1984 in Haund Chillar village amidst the uproarious scenes.

Some of the Members of Parliament from Punjab belonging to the Congress party were, in fact, trying to put off the discussion on ‘the Mass Grave and Mass Killings of innocent Sikhs during 1984’ so that the issue is not discussed in the House. Among them were Pratap Singh Bajwa, Ravneet Singh Bittu, and Santosh Chaudhry were seemingly happy that the discussion has been put off.

Harsimrat Kaur Badal has said that “Before making any statement, Punjab Congress MPs should first clarify their stand to all the Sikhs whether they admit that their party Congress had carried out such a genocide of more than 35000 Sikhs all over India and if they do then they should support her and not be happy if the discussion is postponed to next week.” She has further said that Haund Chillar and Pataudi are just tip of the iceberg, together both these small villages point towards the holocaust of Sikhs that Congress party had systematically committed all over India in an organized manner. Innocent Sikhs traveling in trains, buses, were burned to death, and were targeted in thousands of villages all over India.
“First the Sikhs were betrayed by the Congress party when Congress stormed into the Holy Golden Temple by tanks in 1984 and then by orchestrating one sided mass killing of Sikhs in 1984.” She further added.
By raising the discussion next week in the Lok Sabha she attempts to demand justice to the families of those killed during 1984 one sided killing of Sikhs.


Chandigarh March 17:

Mr. Sukhbir Singh Badal, Deputy Chief Minister Punjab today threw an open challenge to Congress party to point out any factual discrepancy in the budget by participating in the budget debate otherwise it would be deemed that they have accepted their clear defeat, that too one year before the Vidhan Sabha elections.

Talking to media persons in the press room of Punjab Vidhan Sabha after repeated noisy disruptions in the budget debate by the Congress MLAs, Mr. Badal said that undemocratic behavior of Congress party in Vidhan Sabha exposes bankruptcy of issues staring at their face that too in the election year. He said that the rowdy behavior of Congress party shows that unprecedented development by the incumbent Government and pro people and pro farmer budget has bewildered the Congress party that is seeing the writing of their imminent decimation in Vidhan Sabha Elections. He said that after terming the budget a bundle of lies, they have nothing to substantiate because all figures in the budget were authenticated by CAG.

Mr. Badal said that embarrassed at their faux pass and regretting their announcement boycotting their budget debate, the Congress MLAs have shown their true character by jostling with Marshals to the extent of removing their turbans. Mr. Badal said that it was a black day for Indian democracy as opposition party was running away from debate and was preferring to create drama. Mr. Badal said that the SAD-BJP Government preferred a healthy discussion on the budget and give full opportunity to Congress party to expose the weakness, if any in the budget. He said that the ruling party was willing to extend the session if Congress party has guts to participate in debate.
Speaking in the press conference, Mr. Manoranjan Kalia, Local Government & Industries Minister and leader of BJP legislature party said that the behavior of Congress Party in the Punjab Vidhan Sabha was most condemnable and electorate of Punjab were watching their undemocratic behavior. He said that electorate would punish the Congress party for creating unruly disruption in the proceedings of Punjab Vidhan Sabha.



Punjab Government has relieved Mr. Darbara Singh Kalhon, State Information Commissioner, Punjab from his duties on attaining the age of 65 years in terms of section 16(2) of the Right to Information Act, 2005.
Disclosing this here today a spokesman of the Punjab Government said that order has been issued in this regard.




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Harsimrat Kaur Badal M.P.- coming out from the Lok Sabha on March 18, 2011