"The UPA won but
the country and democracy lost", Parkash Singh Badal
CHANDIGARH JULY 23, 2008
"The UPA won but the country and democracy lost. The vote
of trust for the government has come at the expense of trust among
the people in our parliamentary system." This is how the
Punjab Chief Minister Mr. Parkash Singh Badal described the outcome
of the two day debate on confidence motion in the Lok Sabha which
concluded last night .
The Chief Minister said that if the ruling alliance had not
subverted free and fair democratic exercise through corrupt practices,
horse-trading etc., and if the MPs had voted according to their
party alignments before the Lok Sabha session started, the UPA
would have lost. He said that the massive resort to corrupt practices
had made a mockery of the country's well established party system.
The Chief Minister referred to "shameful scenes of display
of naked money power" and said that this had confirmed the
worst suspicion of the people about the moral degeneration of
our political system. "This was the worst hour in the history
of the nation and Indians all over the world had to hang their
heads in shame," said Mr. Badal.
The Chief Minister said that UPA government winning amidst "scenes
that put the country, its polity and parliament to shame is a
matter that needs deep introspection about how our rulers at the
national helm have behaved in full glare of international view.
The UPA may have won a numerical victory but they suffered a huge
moral defeat," said the Chief Minister.
Mr. Badal said that the country now looked up to the Speaker
Mr. Som Nath Chatterjee to conduct a full and fair inquiry into
the matter to expose the guilty and restore the faith of our people
in the political system.
Mr. Badal said that he had the highest regards for the Prime
Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh as an individual but it was unbelievable
that in his concluding speech, he did not even consider the disgraceful
incidents important enough to comment on.
About the nuclear deal, Mr. Badal said that the UPA kept it suspiciously
under the wraps till the very last moment and that raised all
kinds of doubts in the minds of the people. "If they had
been transparent about it, at least with their own allies, the
whole sordid chapter would have been avoided. "
Mr. Badal said that his party is in favour of the use of nuclear
energy so long as " we are able to achieve that without compromising
on our vital national interests and sovereignty. The SAD stands
for a strong and progressive India and anything that promotes
that goal is welcome but the UPA handled the whole issue as it
was a close family secret. They should have taken the entire country
into confidence on the issue." He said that nuclear plants
should be set up at places which are thinly populated and the
power can be pooled into a national grid which can be evacuated
to where it is needed."
Referring to reports about the absence of an Akali MP from the
voting, Mr. Badal said that the matter would be dealt with as
per the party constitution and as per the law of the land.
PUNJAB TO SIGN MOU WITH NAANDI FOUNDATION
TO SUPPLY POTABLE WATER IN ALL THE VILLAGES.
Chandigarh: July 23, 2008
After the successful implementation of pilot project in 50 villages
of Gidderbaha constituency in Muktsar District through a NGO of
International repute- Naandi Foundation, the Punjab Government
has decided a principal to sign a Memorandum of Understanding
to cover the entire State under this programme.
A decision to this effect was taken at a high level meeting
between the Punjab Chief Minister Mr. Parkash Singh Badal and
the Chairman Naandi Foundation Mr. Kallam Anji Reddy here this
Taking part in the deliberation, Mr. Badal evinced keen interest
to implement the programme initiated by the Naandi foundation
in the right earnest so that the people of Punjab could get clean
and safe drinking water especially in the Malwa belt. Mr. Badal
asked the Member Parliament from Bathinda Mrs. Paramjit Kaur Gulshan
who was also present in the meeting to support this programme
by giving a grant of Rs. 1 crore from her Local Area development
(M P LAD) fund to implement this scheme in 20 villages of Bathinda
district. Mr. Badal also directed the sanitation and water supply
department to prepare an action plan to prioritize villages to
be selected for this scheme in view of high level of fluoride
content in the underground water in this Malwa region. He also
sought the expertise of Naandi foundation for cleaning of village
ponds which had now virtually turned into a dumping space of sullage
and sewage gathered from the entire village. He emphasized the
need to recycle the pond water for irrigation purposes and these
ponds could again the filled with clean water which could further
be used for fishing and domestic use.
Chief executive officer (North India) of Naandi foundation Mrs.
Isher Judge Ahluwalia urged the Chief Minister to replicate the
Giddarbaha project of Reverse Osmosis vigorously to provide clean
drinking water in the other parts of the state also.
Earlier, the Finance Minister Mr. Manpreet Singh Badal appreciated
the initiative of Naandi Foundation, which had succeeded in changing
the mindset of the public in motivating them to use R O treated
water in the Giddarbaha region. He said now the usage of clean
drinking water had become a mass movement in this belt because
people had now realized the importance of portable drinking water
as they were becoming more health conscious with every passing
Sanitation and Water Supply Minister Mr. Bikram Singh Majithia
assured the Chief Minister that there was no paucity of funds
for the provision of clean drinking water. He said the department
had already short listed the villages to be cover under this project
in a phased manner He however said that Masna, Muktsar, Bathinda
and border districts of Amritsar, Tarn Taran, Ferozepur and Gurdaspur
would be covered in the first phase.
Prominent amongst other who attended the meeting included Chief
Secretary Punjab Mr. R.I Singh, Principal Secretaryt to Chief
Minister Mr. D.S. Guru, Secretary Sanitation and Water Supply
P.S. Aujla and Chief Engineer water supply S.R. Aggarwal.
PUNJAB ANNOUNCES PUNJABI SAHIT SHIROMANI
Chandigarh July 23, 2008
The Punjab Government today announced the Punjabi Sahit Shiromani
Awards for the years 2007 and 2008 and has selected noted novelist
Mr. Jaswant Singh Kanwal and writer Dr. Dalip Kaur Tiwana for
this award. Besides this 26 literary personalities from different
fields have also been selected for various 13 Shiromani Awards.
Presiding over a meeting of State Advisory Board Languages department
Punjab, Dr. Upinderjit Kaur Education and Languages Minister Punjab
said that 28 personalities have been selected unanimously by the
advisory board for 14 different Shiromani awards. She said that
the name of Punjabi Sahit Shiromani Award has been rechristened
as Punjabi Sahit Ratan to which the board members endorsed in
During the meeting held here Mr. Jaswant Singh and Dr. Dalip
Kaur Tiwana have been selected for Punjabi Sahit Shiromani Award,
Mr. Kartar Singh Suri and Mr. Pargat Singh Sidhu for Shiromani
Punjabi Sahitkar Award, Dr. Chander Trikha and Mrs. Virender Sandhu
for Shiromani Hindi Sahitkar Award, Mr. Prem Kumar and Dr. Nashir
Naqvi for Shiromani Urdu Sahitkar Award, Dr. Brij Bihari Choube
and Dr. Ravinder Kaur for Shiromani Sanskrit Sahitkar Award.
Dr. Harinder Singh Mehboob and Mrs. Sukhwinder Amrit were selected
Shiromani Punjabi Kavi (poet) Award, Mr. Karnail Singh Thind and
Dr. Jaswinder Singh for Shiromani Punjabi Gyan Sahitkar/Alochik
Award, Mr. Parminder Sodhi (Japan) and Janab Fakhar Zaman (Pakistan)
for Shiromani Punjabi Sahitkar (overseas) Award, Mr. Chotu Ram
Moudgil and Mr. S Saki for Shiromani Punjabi Sahitkar Award (out
of Punjab), Mr. Jasbir Singh Jass and Dr. Sukhwant Kaur Mann for
Shiromani Punjabi Bal Sahitkar Lekhak (writer) Award, Mr. G.S.
Sidhu Damdami (Punjabi Tribune) and Mr. Paramjit Singh Sasan (Ajit)
for Shiromani Punjabi Patarkar Award, Bhai Banta Singh Ragi and
Bhai Gursharn Singh Ragi for Shiromani Ragi/Dhadi/Kavishar Award,
Mrs. Gurmeet Bawa and Mr. G.S.Sachdev (flute) for Shiromani Punjabi
Singer/Musician Award, Mr. Amrik Gill and Mr. Jatinder Brar has
been selected for Shiromani Punjabi TV/Radio/Theater/Natak/Actor/Producer/Writer
The Minister said that the awardees of Shiromani Puraskars would
be honoured on August 8, 2008 in a function to be held at Chandigarh
and Chief Minister Punjab Mr. Parkash Singh Badal would present
these awards to the selected personalities. She added that the
prize money for the Punjabi Sahit Shiromani Award has been doubled
from Rs. 2.5 lac to Rs. 5 lac and for other Shiromani awards it
has been increased from Rs. 1 lac to 2.5 lac.
Among others Mr.Jaspal Singh Secretary Higher Education and Languages,
Mrs. Balbir Kaur Director Languages Department Punjab, Dr. Surjit
Patar, Bhai Baldeep Singh, Gulzar Singh Sandhu, Dr. Deepak Manmohan
Singh, Dr. Satinder Noor, Sardar Panchi, Mr. Satnam Manak(Ajit),
Mr. Sidhu Damdami (Punjabi Tribune), Mr. N.S. Parwana, Dr. Satinder
Singh and Bibi Kiranjot Kaur were also present in the meeting.
OSD TO CM BHAI SUKHDEEP SINGH BREAVED
PUNJAB CM AND SUKHBIR BADAL CONDOLES THE DEATH OF FATHER OF BHAI
CHANDIGARH JULY 23, 2008
Punjab Chief Minister Mr. Parkash Singh Badal expressed profound
grief and sorrow over the sad demise of Bhai Devinder Singh Sidhu,
Political Adviser Shiromani Akali Dal and father of Bhai Sukhdeep
Singh, OSD to Chief Minister Punjab died at Washington D.C. in
United States on last Friday after a brief illness. He was 66
and a survived by his wife and two sons.
In a condolence message, Mr. Badal said that Bhai Devinder Singh
Sidhu was a disciplined solider of the party and in his death
a void has been created which was difficult to be filled. He recalled
his services for the uplift of the down trodden and the spread
of education in the Malwa belt.
Mr. Badal expressed his heart felt sympathies with the members
of the bereaved family and prayed to Almighty to give strength
and courage to bear this irreparable loss and grant peace to the
Member Parliament and President Shiromani Akali Dal Mr. Sukhbir
Singh Badal also mourned the death of Bhai Devinder Singh Sidhu
and described him as a loyalist of the SAD who relentlessly worked
for the welfare of the party and the overall development of the
According to the family sources, the cremation of Bhai Devinder
Singh Sidhu will take place at his native village Bhucho Khurd
in district Bathinda tomorrow. Bhog and Antim Ardas would be held
on July 27 at his village.
PUNJAB GOVERNMENT HIKES ALLOWANCE FOR
BLIND CHILDREN FROM RS.600 TO RS.1200 PER MONTH
CHANDIGARH JULY 23, 2008
The Punjab government today decided to enhance the current allowance
from Rs.600/- to Rs.1200/- per child per month with immediate
effect for the visually handicapped children of the Blind School
Jamalpur in district Ludhiana.
A decision to this effect was taken in a meeting held here under
the chairmanship of Punjab Chief Minister Mr. Parkash Singh Badal
as a follow up action to the recent visit of Mr. Badal to the
Brail Bhawan, Jamalpur on 17th July.
Mr. Badal also asked the Secretary Water & Sanitation to
immediately undertake the work to provide safe drinking water
at a cost of Rs.12.85 lakh in the institute for blind students
by the end of October. The Chief Minister also asked the Chief
Secretary to send a team of senior officers to visit the institute
of visually impaired Dehradun to seek expert advice for the upgradation
of Brail Bhawan thereby increasing its intake capacity to 500
visually impaired students. He also directed the Finance Department
to immediately release a sum of Rs.40 lakh for the installation
of new brail press and a digital studio in the institute. Besides
he also agreed in principle to upgrade the existing high school
to 10+2 level.
The Chief Minister also deputed Director Sports to visit the
Institute and prepared a detailed plan for the development and
expansion of existing play grounds. He also asked the Mayor, Municipal
Corporation Ludhiana to construct a foot over bridge at a cost
of Rs.75 lakh across the Ludhiana-Chandigarh highway to ensure
easy access to the visually impaired children to the institute.
Deputy Commissioner Ludhiana assured the Chief Minister that
the works related to the construction of boundary wall and reception
centre would be completed at the earliest from within the resources
of district administration.
The meeting was attended by Chief Secretary RI Singh, Principal
Secretary to Chief Minister DS Guru, Principal Secretary Finance
DS Kalha, Secretary Social Security Harjit Singh, Secretary Water
Supply & Sanitation PS Aujla, Special Secretary Planning Tejveer
Singh, Director Social Security Rakhi Gupta Bhandari and Deputy
Commissioner Ludhiana Sumer Singh Gurjar.
OPPORTUNITY FOR FARMERS TO REGULARIZEUN-AUTHORIZED LOADS
Chandigarh, July 23, 2008
The persistent demand of the farmers, the Punjab State Electricity
Board had re-introduced Voluntary Disclosure Scheme (V.D.S) for
Tubewell Consumers to regularize un-authorize loads of higher
size motors/submersible pump sets used by them.
Disclosing this here today an official spokesman said that special
camps were also being organized at many places to regularize such
loads at nominal charges without any penalty. Regularization Charges
have been fixed Rs. 1000/- for per BHP for extended load only.
However the rates of security would remain Rs. 200 per BHP for
extended loads only.
Tubewell connections released within last 3 years either under
general category or any other priority category should not be
entitled to get un-authorized load regularized under VDS. However
such consumers were allowed to get their load regularized at the
rate of Rs. 3000/- per BHP, except for connections released under
discretionary quota of Chairman, the rate for enhancing load would
be Rs. 5000/- per BHP.
For these farmers should contact the concerned field office
to regularize their un-authorized tubewell loads, on the spot
by getting entries made in their pass books, before 31-7-2008,
because no further extension would be given before this.