PUNJAB TO START S.I.Ts IN ALL SCIENCE
STREAM SENIOR SECONDARY SCHOOLS
CHANDIGARH, 11 January 2008:
The Punjab Government would start Satellite Interactive Terminals
(SITs) in all the Senior Secondary Schools having science stream
by the end of this financial year.
A decision to this effect was taken in the first meeting of the
Board of Governors of the Punjab EDUSAT Society held here today
under the chairmanship of Punjab Chief Minister Mr. Prakash Singh
Taking part in the deliberations Mr. Badal said that the EDUSAT
society would be responsible to implement the EDUSAT project covering
the institutions imparting education i.e., School Education, Medical
Education, Technical Education, Medical Education and Higher Education
and also impart coaching & training to the students aspiring
to appear in the Competitive Entrance Examination for various
Engineering and Medical colleges.
The Board of Governors has also approved the decisions taken
by the Executive Committee of Punjab EDUSAT Society held on 26
th December, 2007.
It may be mentioned here that the Chief Minister, Mr. Badal had
inaugurated the EDUSAT project on 2nd January, 2008 at Mohali
when he addressed students all over the Punjab through the network.
The State Government had already released Rs. 12 crores for the
project. The State Government has also sanctioned Rs.5.5 crores
to install more SITs to cover all the Senior Secondary Schools
with science stream by 31st March, 2008.
Prominent amongst those who were present in the meeting included
Mr. Tikshan Sood, Minister Technical Education Government of Punjab,
Chief Secretary, Mr. Ramesh Inder Singh, Secretary School Education
Mr. Karan Bir Singh Sidhu, D.G. School Education Mr.Krishan Kumar,
Director Information & Public Relations Mr. Tejvir Singh the
Administrative Secretaries of various other departments and members
of Board of Governors.
PUNJAB SIGNS MoU WITH W.T.O - TO
CHANDIGARH, 11 January 2008:
The Punjab government today inked a memorandum of understanding
(MoU) with United Nations World Tourism Organisation (UNWTO) for
the formulation of a Tourism Development Master Plan for the State.
Principal Secretary Tourism Ms. Geetika Kalha and Executive Director
of UNWTO Mr. Harsh Verma signed on the behalf of the Punjab Government
and World Tourism Organisation respectively in the presence of
Punjab Chief Minister Mr. Parkash Singh Badal.
Speaking on the occasion Mr. Badal said that it was a historic
day when the state government had signed a MoU with WTO to prepare
a blue print of Tourism plan in the state. Mr. Badal pointed out
that the Punjab had a tremendous tourism potential which needed
to be tapped optimally.
He said that the state government had identified tourism as
one of the major economic sectors of the State and was committed
to achieve a high degree of sustainable development with optimum
utilization of a rich and wide variety of tourism resources. As
a result, the State Government had entered into an agreement with
the World Tourism Organization (WTO), a specialized agency of
the United Nations and the leading international organization
in the field of tourism, to formulate a Tourism Development Master
Plan for the State, said Mr. Badal.
Explaining the details of the project Mr. Harsh Verma, Executive
Director of UNWTO informed that this Tourism Development Plan
would be prepared for next 15 years i.e. 2008-23, which would
define Tourism policy and strategy, identify tourism products
and services and develop these in a persisting manner besides,
a five-years marketing action programme, two pilot demonstration
projects and a training programme on destination development &
management would also be chalked out. The project would also include
series of initiatives to bring together the tourism private sector
and the Government to realize its full potential, said Mr. Verma.
Punjab's tourism resources cover an extensive range: religious,
heritage/cultural, natural, medical and commercial. When combined
with a very warm and hospitable people and a wide variety of folklore,
these resources provide Punjab with an outstanding opportunity
to develop and sustain a major and diversified tourism sector
with resultant economic and social benefits for the people of
As the birthplace of Sikhism, visitor flows are dominated by
Sikhs- from within the State, elsewhere in India and from the
estimated 10 million strong Sikh diaspora around the world. They
are drawn by devotion to the Golden Temple at Amritsar, the many
other Gurdwaras around the State, and on pilgrimage routes such
as to the site of the first guru's enlightenment at Sultanpur
The waterways of Punjab are the lifeblood of the State providing
irrigation to vast tracts of farm land. The rivers- the Beas,
the Satluj and the Kanjli- along with the extensive canal system
serve to attract large colonies of migratory birds in the winter
(in particular at the wetland of Harike, Kanjli and Ropar wetlands).
The natural beauty of the areas created by the Ranjit Sagar Dam
and Talwara Lake (Pong Dam) offers strong prima facie opportunity
for the development of an upscale resort, a wide range of boating
opportunities and ecotourism activities.
Prominent amongst those who were present on the occasion included
Tourism & Cultural Affairs Minister Mr. Hira Singh Gabaria,
Chief Secretary Mr. R.I. Singh, Secretary Tourism Mr. D.P. Reddy,
Special Principal Secretary to Chief Minister and MD PIDB Mr.
S.S. Sandhu, Mr. Parveen Kumar and Mr. Gagandeep Singh (both Additional
Principal Secretary to Chief Minister) and Director Information
and Public Relations Punjab Mr. Tejvir Singh beside senior functionaries
of the state administration.
ROTATIONAL IRRIGATION PROGRAMME
FOR RABI SEASON ANNOUNCED
Chandigarh, January 11:
The Irrigation Department, Punjab has announced the Rotational
Programme for irrigation for the current Rabi Season through canal
water from 14th January to 21st January, 2008. The channels of
Sirhind Canal System would run on priority basis from Bhatinda
Branch, Bist Doab Canal, Sidhwan Branch, Abohar Branch and Patiala
Disclosing this here today, a spokesman of the Irrigation department
said that direct distributaries of Bhakra Main Line, 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.
He further added that the Punjab channels off taking from Harike
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".
He also said that the channels off taking from Upper Bari Doab
Canal (UBDC) Kasur Branch Lower with its distributaries being
in first preference would run to their indent. Balance surplus
water available would be utilised in Sabraon Branch, Lahore Branch,
Main Branch Lower and with their distributaries respectively.
CHIEF MINISTER ANNOUNCES BONANZA-
FOR STATE'S INDUSTRY
CHANDIGARH, 11 January 2008:
In a major relief to Industry and Small & Medium Investors
in the real estate sector, Punjab Chief Minister Mr. Parkash Singh
Badal today announced a comprehensive package for slashing the
existing rates of External Development Charges (EDC) and Change
of Land use (CLU) within the state.
Addressing the media persons at Punjab Bhawan, Mr. Badal informed
that in free enterprise zone within periphery and in industrial
zone of Local Planning Area of Amritsar, Jalandhar, Ludhiana,
EDC had been reduced from Rs.53.51 lakh per acre to Rs.5.50 lakh
per acre. In the rest of the State there would be no CLU charges
on industry and EDC had been reduced from Rs.30 lakh per acre
to Rs.1 lakh per acre, added Mr. Badal. He further said that the
industry would also include warehousing, logistics and IT Parks
etc and notification regarding all these concessions would be
issued within a day.
On behalf of the Chief Minister, Secretary Housing & Urban
Development Mr. Arun Goel informed the Media persons that EDC,
CLU Charges on petrol pumps and gas godowns had been reduced from
Rs.334 lakh to Rs.35 lakh per acre in periphery and from Rs.175
lakh to Rs.21 lakh per acre in medium potential zone and from
Rs.105 lakh to Rs.7 lakh in the low potential zone. Petrol pumps
and gas godowns would no longer be required to obtain CLU, the
Deputy Commissioner had been authorized to give final NOC, added
In a major relief to Educational Institutions the charges have
been reduced from Rs.42.70 lakh per acre to Rs.8.18 lakh per acre
in periphery, from Rs.38.50 lakh per acre to Rs.6.94 lakh per
acre around Municipal Corporation towns and from Rs.25.50 lakh
per acre to Rs.1.79 lakh per acre in the rest of the State.
To encourage sports infrastructure in the State, charges have
been reduced from Rs.57.84 lakh per acre to Rs.50,000 per acre.
Charges for Hospitals and Hotels have been reduced from Rs.42.70
lakh per acre to Rs.15.85 lakh per acre in periphery and from
Rs.25.50 lakh per acre to Rs.3.33 lakh per acre in most of the
In a major step to attract investment and channelize land from
unproductive use into productive hands, hospitals, institutions,
film/media centres and hotels have been allowed up to 25% of the
industrial component of industry parks. Residential colonies,
less than 10 acres, who had applied before 16.07.2007 would be
granted licenses, irrespective of size. In periphery, stand alone
commercial centres, multiplexes would now be allowed in a minimum
of 5 acres against the previous 10 acres.
BADAL FOR JAIL REFORMS ON PRIORITY
(Punjab to appoint 24 ASPs)
CHANDIGARH, JANUARY 11,
The Punjab Government would appoint 24 new Assistant Superintendent
Prisons (ASPs) soon to streamline the functioning of the Jails
in the state.
A decision to this effect has been taken at a high level meeting
chaired by Punjab Chief Minister Mr. Parkash Singh Badal regarding
the Jail administration in the state here late last evening.
Mr. Badal asked the Senior Jail Officers to initiate measures
to tone up the Jail Administration in an effective manner to avoid
such unruly incidents that had recently happened in Jalandhar
Central Jail. He said that in order to meet with the new challenges
efficaciously, the Jail administration requires immediate Jail
reforms in terms of ensuring basic requirements in jails like
fresh and clean drinking water, flush system in toilets, sewerage,
Tube well and water tanks etc. The Chief Minister has also directed
the finance department to release Rs. 11 crore immediately for
providing these facilities to the Inmates beside Rs. 25 lac for
the repair work of the damage caused by the inmates' rampage in
Regarding the over crowding in most of the Jails Mr. Badal said
that Punjab Government had already announced the construction
of new Jails at Faridkot and Kapurthala to substitute Jalandhar
and faridkot Jails. These Jails would accommodate about 3000 prisoners,
plans had been finalized to complete these jails by the beginning
Prominent amongst those who were present in the meeting included
Jails, Tourism & Cultural Affairs Minister Mr. Hira Singh
Gabria,Chief Secretary Mr. RI Singh, Principal Secretary Home
Affairs and Justice Dr. BC Gupta, Director General of Police (Prisons)
Mohamad Izhar Alam, Additional Principal Secretary to Chief Minister
Mr. Parveen Kumar beside senior functionaries of the state administration
and Jail Superintendents from variou s Central Jails of Punjab.
Later, while presiding over another meeting Mr. Badal asked the
Forest Department to workout a comprehensive strategy to maintain
the Panj Piaras Park at Sri Anandpur Sahib. He also approved the
Rs.28.33 lac rehabilitation plan prepared by the Forest Department
which included fencing, earth work for removal of deep rooted
weeds, plantation of trees, lights, gates, iron railing, repair
of fountains, fixing of red stone and Payment of pending electricity
bill along the renewal of the connection etc.
PUNJAB CM DEDICATES LUDHIANA BUS
TERMINAL TO PUBLIC
LUDHIANA JANUARY 11:
Punjab Chief Minister Mr.Parkash Singh Badal today sought whole-hearted
cooperation from the people to successfully run the SAD-BJP government
because it was the people's government for people's welfare and
we were merely their representatives who have been elected through
These views were expressed by Mr.Badal while dedicating the ultra
modern Amar Shaheed Sukhdev Interstate Bus Terminal at cost of
Rs.21 crore on BOT basis. He said that Government, Official machinery
and Public were the three integral organs of the state administration.
Mr.Badal said: "any government could not function efficiently
unless there is completely harmony and cohesiveness amongst these
organs". The Chief Minister also asked the officers of both
and civil administration to pay due respect and regard to the
party workers of SAD-BJP and said that the Government would suitably
reward such deserving officers who comply with these instructions
in true spirit.
Mr.Badal lauded the Transport Minister Master Mohan Lal for naming
this ultra-modern interstate bus terminus after great martyr Amar
Shaheed Sukhdev. He said that it was a right step to perpetuate
the memory of national heroes and to infuse the spirit of patriotism
amongst the youth. He also announced a grant of Rs.10 lakh for
the maintenance and preservation of the native house of great
martyr Sukhdev which would be developed into a memorial. He said
that the previous government had ignored these martyrs and it
was the pious duty of our government to pay befitting tributes
to them by putting up suitable memorials. He said that more than
80% sacrifices in the terms of executions and imprisonment made
by our forefathers during the freedom struggle were from Punjab.
He said that Shaheed-e-Azam Bhagat Singh, Shaheed Sukhdev, Lala
Lajpat Rai, Shaheed Kartar Singh Sarbha and Shaheed Udham Singh
were amongst the legendary heroes who made supreme sacrifices
to free our mother from the clutches of British.
Mr.Badal bemoaned that the dreams and the aspirations of our
freedom fighters had not yet been cherished because they wished
for a nation free from illiteracy and unemployment. Mr.Badal said:
"60 years have passed after freedom and yet we have not been
able to provide our public with the basic amenities of healthcare,
education, drinking water and electricity". He said that
almost 30% of country's population was living in penury and just
thriving on a daily wages of Rs.20. He held the congress government
responsible for this social divide which ruled our country for
more than 50 years. "Why congress was not sensitize to the
basic problems of a common man", asked Mr.Badal. The Chief
Minister said that it was Congress government's deliberate effort
to create a wedge between rich and poor because it always followed
the policy of divide and rule to pursue their vested interests
and common man's welfare was never a part of their political agenda.
Mr.Badal said that our government since inception had taken several
initiatives for the overall development of the state and the welfare
of people. He said that SAD was a party of grass root people and
we were committed to serve them in the right earnest. He said
that our government had taken various measures to ensure development
in the facets of power, industry, agriculture, education, infrastructure
and health care. Ruling out any sort of financial crisis in the
state, Mr.Badal confidently said that the economic position of
the state was stable. He said that the several on-going development
projects and welfare programmes were a testimony to this fact.
He squarely blamed the congress government led by Capt. Amarinder
Singh for pushing down the state at 5 th and 6th slot which was
at No.1 in 2002 when our SAD-BJP government demitted office. He
reiterated that our government was committed to make Punjab as
front runner state thereby relegating it at No.1 .
Later, Mr.Badal alongwith Mr.Mohan Lal flagged off a fleet of
40 new PUNBUS buses.
Speaking on the occasion, State Transport Minister Master Mohan
Lal said that the Transport Department had chalked out an ambitious
programme to modernize and upgrade the 32 bus stands in the state
on the Built Operate and Transfer basis. He said that bus terminals
at Pathankot, Amritsar, Jalandhar and Ludhiana had been made operational
and Phagwara would be would be dedicated on January 16. He also
said that Rajpura bus stand would be dedicated soon to the public
and at a world class bus stand at the holy town of Anandpur Sahib
would be developed on the priority. He informed that all the up-coming
new bus stands would be named after the great martyrs and warriors
for their heroic deeds.
Master Mohan Lal mentioned that the new bus terminus at Ludhiana
with ultra-modern facilities would result in hassle free movement
of 3800 buses with an influx of 1.25 lakh passengers every day.
He said that with the commissioning of this prestigious project
the long pending demand of the local residents had been fulfilled.
He thanked Mr.Badal for formulating a pro-passenger and passenger-friendly
new transport policy aimed at providing best public transport
services at the affordable rates. He said that the state government
would soon press in 200 AC buses at a normal fair to enable the
common man to travel in AC buses.
Prominent amongst others who spoke on the occasion included President
BJP Punjab Unit Prof.Rajinder Bhandari, BJP, Deputy Speaker Lok
Sabha Charanjit Singh Attwal, veteran Akali Dal leader Jagdev
Singh Talwandi, Tourism Minister Hira Singh Gabria, MP from Ludhiana
SS Dhillon, nephew of Shaheed Sukhdev Vinod Thapar and District
President Om Praksh Bhardwaj. The function was also attended by
Deputy Speaker Punjab Vidhan Sabha Satpal Gosian, Chief Parliamentary
Secretary Mr.Bikramjit Singh Khalsa, General Secretary SAD Maheshinder
Singh Grewal, former Minister Jagdish Singh Garcha besides senior
leaders and party workers of SAD-BJP. Principal Secretary Transport
DS Jaspal, State Transport Commissioner Venkat Rattanam and Director
Transport Mandeep Singh were amongst the senior officers of the
district civil and police administration.