IRRIGATION FACILITIES IN AROUND 72,000 ACRES OF 9 DISTRICTS INCLUDING SIX OF SUB-MOUNTAINOUS AREA WILL BE STRENGTHEN: DR. NIJJAR

STATE CREATING INFRASTRUCTURE BY INCURRING RS.7.71-CR TO USE TREATED WATER OF 4 STPs FOR IRRIGATION PURPOSES

PROPOSED NEW PROJECT WORTH RS.100-CR FOR ASSISTANCE OF UNDERGROUND PIPELINE PROJECTS

Chandigarh, August 16:Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Singh Mann's government has started projects worth around Rs.90 crore for strengthening and improving irrigation facilities in the state using natural resources, which will provide irrigation facilities in 9 districts of the state. Similarly, a new project with a cost of Rs.100 crore has also been proposed for assistance of underground pipeline projects.

Describing this here, Punjab Soil & Water Conservation Minister Dr. Inderbir Singh Nijjar said that for integrated development of kandi area, a new watershed development programme has been started at a cost of Rs.80-CR with a target to benefit 70,000 acres of sub-mountainous area in Hoshiarpur, Pathankot, Gurdaspur, SBS Nagar, Rupnagar and SAS Nagar districts.

"The Main focus of the scheme shall be on Natural Resource Management through rainwater harvesting, Farm Production, livelihood support and community development activities", said Dr. Nijjar, adding that efforts have also been made for using treated water of four Sewage Treatment Plants (STPs) for irrigation purposes.

He informed that Rs7.71 Cr. has been allotted for laying infrastructure for productive utilization of treated waste water of 4 STPs for irrigation, which will provide irrigation facilities up to 2,000 acres of agricultural land in districts Hoshiarpur, Barnala, Fatehgarh Sahib and Ludhiana.

Dr. Nijjar said that apart from this, a new project for assistance on community & individual projects of underground pipeline for judicious use of available irrigation water has also been proposed with an outlay of Rs.100-CR.

Besides this, Rs.11-CR has been approved for taking up new schemes for construction of Water harvesting-cum natural recharging Structures/ check dams in sub-mountainous kandi area, Irrigation Infrastructure for productive use of water stored in Village Ponds and construction of projects for Roof-top Rainwater Harvesting and Artificial Recharging in Govt./Institutional Buildings, he added.

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ON COMPLETION OF FIVE MONTHS, FIVE MINISTERS OF BHAGWANT MANN LED STATE GOVERNMENT HOLDING KEY MINISTRIES, PRESENT THEIR REPORT CARD

Chandigarh, August 16:As the government led by Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann completes five months in office, five cabinet ministers holding key ministries,held a joint press conference to present a record of their performance.

Finance Minister Harpal Singh Cheema, Education Minister Harjot Singh Bains, Health Minister Chetan Singh Jodemajra, Agriculture Minister Kuldeep Singh Dhaliwal, and Power & PWD Minister Harbhajan Singh ETO listed out a string of achievements and promises fulfilled so far.

Finance Minister Harpal Singh Cheema said that among the main achievements of the Chief Minister Bhagwant Man led government is the earmarking of a lion's share, that is 35.06 percent of total budget for 9 major key departments of Health and Family Welfare, Medical Education and Research, Education (School and Higher), Technical Education, Home Affairs, Cooperation, Agriculture and Farmers Welfare, and Social Security, Women and Child Development for this financial year.

Stating that Punjab Government is putting in honest efforts to improve the fiscal health of the state, Cheema said that the government has returned the loan amounting to Rs. 12339 crore including the principal amount of Rs. 6349 crore and interest on loan Rs 5989 Crore, while the loan of Rs. 10729 crore rupees was availed during this period.

Cheema further added that Mann Government has paid Rs 525 Crore to bailout Punjab State Agriculture Cooperative Bank (PSACB), 188.01 crore for payment to pensioner of PSACB, Rs. 200 crore for payment to sugarcane farmer, Rs. 100 crore out of total Rs. 350 crore to Food and Civil Supplies to bailout PUNSUP, Rs. 66.56 crore out of Rs. 100 crore to the Agricultural and farmers welfare department for Moong Dal cultivation (Gap funding to MARKFED) and Rs. 5341.34 crore out of Rs. 15843.63 crore to the Power department for power subsidy payment to PSPCL.

Finance Minister said that Punjab Government has focused on improving the state revenue while making its maximum utilization for the welfare of the people of the state only. A target of 27 percent of the growth in GST collection was set for FY 2022-23, during the first four months the state achieved 24.15 percent growth with a collection of 7243 crores of GST, said Cheema while adding that the collection of GST will increase during the festive season.

Sharing the success story of the new excise police, Finance Minister said that with the new excise policy the Mann government collected Rs. 3108.17 crore whereas the previous government collected Rs 2166.48 for the same period during FY 2021-22. He said that the Aam Aadmi government registered excise growth of 43.47 percent by putting a full stop on the liquor mafia.

Agriculture, Rural Development and NRI Affairs Minister Kuldeep Singh Dhaliwal, while presenting the five-month report card of the Bhagwant Mann government said that the Punjab government has ordered the audit of the private Sugar Mills to find out sugarcane arrival and production of Sugar. He said that it has been decided to conduct an audit of private sugar mills to gather complete details about the sugar mills. He said that NRI Punjabis are contacting him to contribute to the development of the state for which a new policy will be introduced next week, a special trust is being established by the Punjab government, in which NRIs will be able to contribute and the money from this trust will be spent on improving health and education facilities in the state.

The Agriculture Minister said that the state government will not allow the sale of duplicate insecticides in the state at all. To stop such ill practices raids have been conducted at 6 big stores so far. He also said that the state government has banned 10 pesticides that were adversely affecting the quality of basmati, which were a major obstacle in the export quality.

Kuldeep Singh Dhaliwal said that the government led by Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann has launched a comprehensive campaign to get rid of illegal encroachment from panchayat land across the state, so far 9053 acres of panchayat land has been freed from ileagal encroachments including prime land near Mohali and other cities. He said that the Rural Development Department has so far located 7000 acres of panchayat land, the owner of which is the panchayat department, but this land was not known for many years. He said that the most historic step of the state government is that for the first time gram sabhas have been held in 12000 villages. He further said that 4500 crore rupees will be spent on the repair and strengthening of the link roads under the Mandi Board and the renovation and modernization of cattle markets will also be done.

Kuldeep Singh Dhaliwal said that on the personal initiative of Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann, 1760 crore rupees RDF have been released by the central government. The state government has already taken a decision that this money should be spent only for the overall development of villages.

He also said that Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann led government is taking various steps to bring the farmers out of the traditional wheat and paddy crop cycle and save water, the state government has given MSP for the first time on moong dal as a result of which about 1.29 lakh acres of moong dal was sown this year double the area swon last year. The Minister also disclosed that the state government has released 200 crore rupees to the sugarcane farmers, all the pendencies of sugarcane farmers will be cleared by September 7.

The Agriculture Minister said that 300 family members of the farmers who lost their lives during the farmers' agitation have been given jobs by the government and compensation of Rs 5 lakh each.

The Power and PWD Minister Harbhajan Singh ETO said that the State Government led by the Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann has started free power to the consumers at the rate of 300 units per month from July 1, 2022. This would cost Rs. 5629 crores to the state exchequer. He said that the State Government has decided to continue the scheme pertaining to Rs. 3 per unit charges with 8 KW load which would cost state exchequer Rs. 1278 crore. The government has also waived off the bills of industrial consumers till December 31, 2021 thus accruing a subsidy of Rs. 2996 crore to the PSPCL. The total subsidy thus amounts to Rs. 18137 crore. For the farming community, the State Government has reduced the per horse power load from Rs. 4750 to Rs. 2500 under the BDS scheme which would benefit 1.59 lakh farmers. During the paddy season, the uninterrupted power was ensured to the farmers. On July 29th, 2022, the demand for power supply to the tune of 14, 207 MW was met which is a record. The Power Department has tendered for installing 1000 MW solar power plant. As regarding the employment, as many as 284 youth have been given jobs by the PSPCL during these 5 months. Also, 86 Beldars and 727 JEs have been given jobs on the compassionate grounds.

Elaborating on the achievements of the PWD, the Minister said that Punjab has a road network of 76500 Km. He also said that 38890 Km road network falls under the jurisdiction of the Public Works Department where as 32000 Km roads come under the Mandi Board which are repaired and taken care off at regular intervals. During the last 4 months, as many as 13 roads have been completed whereas 124 Km of roads have been repaired. The in principle approval for constructing a medical college at Sangrur at a cost of Rs. 345 crore has been given whereas the tenders worth Rs. 7.75 crore have been called for the nursing college. On the recruitment front, 22 Sub Divisional Engineers (SDE) have been given jobs in the jobs whereas the number of JEs recruited stands at 210.

Under the commitment of the Punjab government led by Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann to provide better health facilities to the people of the state, the Health Department has taken a big step forward and fulfilled the promise of opening 75 Aam Aadmi clinics on Independence Day. Now, 25 more such clinics have been opened. This brings the total number of Aam Aadmi clinics to 100.

This Punjab Health and Medical Education Minister Chetan Singh Jouramajra was giving details of the work done by the State Government in a period of five months.

The Health Minister said that it was launched by the Chief Minister at Ludhiana. These clinics have been opened all over the state and would provide the best health services free of cost to people across the state. Every Aam Aadmi Clinic would have MBBS doctors to treat patients and diagnose diseases. There will be 4-5 staff members including doctors, pharmacists, nurses and others.

Mr. Jouramajra reiterated that health sector is the priority of the State Government. The De-addiction centers have been set up every five kilometers in the state. Similarly, the number of OOAT Clinics has been increased from 208 to 537. About 7.05 lakh patients have been registered in these centers.

Giving information about the recruitment, the Health Minister said that 253 community health officers, specialist doctors and others have been recruited and 296 staff have been empaneled for Mohalla clinics.

The Health Department is working continuously against Covid. The target regarding 96 percent of the first dose and 83 percent of the second dose to children above 12 years of age has been met. Testing is going on regularly and Health infrastructure is being strengthened under which initiatives such as 3 Mother Child Hospitals, Radio Therapy Center at Amritsar, installation of fire fighting system at Nabha, Setting up of ETPs at 31 Community Health Centres, Repair and renovation work in three district and 10 sub-division hospitals are in progress.

Mr. Jouramajra, who also has the charge of the Department of Medical Education and Research, said that in the next five years there will be a medical college in every district because there are 11 districts which do not have any medical college. Approval has been received from the Government of India for medical colleges at Hoshiarpur and Kapurthala and tenders are being floated. The foundation stone of the medical college was laid by the Chief Minister at Mastuana Sahib (Sangrur). A medical college at Malerkotla is under the consideration of the Ministry of Minorities.

The medical education budget was increased from Rs 659.66 crore to Rs. 1033.06 crore. The proposal to increase the remuneration of resident doctors has been approved. The remuneration of junior residents is being increased from 52 thousand to 67968 rupees and that of the senior resident is being increased from 65 thousand to 81562 rupees. During the last five months, 842 staff nurses and 81 posts of paramedics of 8 specialties were recruited and 52 posts of paramedics and 184 posts of medical faculty are also in the process of being recruited.

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ON THE OCCASION OF ARVIND KEJRIWAL'S BIRTHDAY, AAM AADMI PARTY'S YOUTH WING ORGANIZED A BLOOD DONATION CAMP IN MOHALI

CABINET MINISTERS ANMOL GAGAN MANN, CHETAN SINGH JODEMAJRA AND BRAHM SHANKAR ATTENDED THE CAMP

• BLOOD DONATION BY 76 BLOOD DONORS, HONOURED WITH PLANTS

Chandigarh/SAS Nagar 16 August:On the occasion of Aam Aadmi Party's (AAP) National Convener and Delhi Chief Minister Mr. Arvind Kejriwal's birthday today, Aam Aadmi Party's youth wing Mohali organized a blood donation camp at Main Market in Sector-68. This blood donation camp was attended by Health Minister Sardar Chetan Singh Jodemajra as the chief guest. Meanwhile, Cabinet Minister Madam Anmol Gagan Mann performed the cake cutting ceremony. Cabinet Minister Shri Brahm Shankar was specially present on this occasion. People participated in the blood donation camp and donated blood.

On this occasion, Tourism and Culture, Labour, Investment Promotion Minister Madam Anmol Gagan Mann said that a blood donation camp was specially organized by Aam Aadmi Party's youth wing Mohali today to meet the shortage of blood in the hospitals of the district. On this occasion, she congratulated the people on the birthday of Mr. Arvind Kejriwal and prayed for his long life. She said that the state government is committed to raise the standard of living of the people. She said that blood donation is a great donation, she said that a single drop of blood donated by us can save the life of a needy person. Every health conscious person should donate blood as there is no other alternative of blood. On this occasion, Cabinet Minister Mr. Chetan Singh Jodemajra and Cabinet Minister Mr. Brahm Shankar also congratulated the people on the birthday of Mr. Arvinder Kejriwal. In this blood donation camp, blood was donated by 76 blood donors who were honored with plants by Cabinet Minister Shri Brahm Sankar.

On this occasion, Aam Aadmi Party District President Mohali Madam Probhjot Kaur, District Vice President Youth Wing Mr. Gurpreet Singh Bains, Sunny Ahluwali Secretary Punjab, Subhas Sharma District Secretary Mohali, Vaneet Verma President Trade Wing Punjab, Jaspal Singh District President Trade Wing and other volunteers were also present.

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SCHOOL EDUCATION DEPARTMENT TO WRITE NEW CHAPTER OF PUNJAB: HARJOT SINGH BAINS

STATE GOVERNMENT WILL ESTABLISH MINING INDUSTRY BY ANNIHILATING MINING MAFIA

MANN GOVERNMENT COMMITTED TO PROVIDE CANAL WATER TO EVERY FARM OF STATE

2829 MOBILE PHONES SEIZED FROM PRISONS

Chandigarh, August 16:Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann-led government will completely transform school education department that will write new chapter of Punjab, disclosed Mr. Harjot Singh Bains, Cabinet Minister, Punjab, here while highlighting achievements of about five month tenure of the state government.

Mr. Bains said, a large-scale recruitment campaign is being conducted in the school education department soon, under which deserving youths will get jobs, adding that the detailed survey of 19123 schools of the state is being conducted with the aim of improving school education and to get equitable information about condition of the schools. He said that 100 schools of eminence will be established in the state of Punjab.

For the first time in the history of the state, said Mr. Bains, a dedicated policy has been brought for the crusher industry. Apart from this, the price of gravel has been fixed along with sand.

He said that DSR survey of mining areas is being conducted for the first time in the state. As many as 328 cases have been registered against illegal miners since 19 March, 2022 till date and 298 vehicles have also been seized since 15 April 2022 till date, while three crushers have been sealed so far and 89 'R notices' have been issued.

The Cabinet Minister has said, "we have not only taken action against those involved in illegal mining, but action has also been taken against the erroneous officials of the department. And, five officials and employees have been suspended while charge sheet and show-cause notices have been issued to 21 officials.

Giving information about the work being done by the Water Resources Department, Bains said that new irrigation projects are being started soon so that canal water can be brought to every farm in the state. He said that the work of the Shahpur Kandhi Dam has been intensified and the project will be completed in the next one and a half years, which will not only provide more efficient power supply to the people of Punjab but also stop the water going to Pakistan and to be used for irrigation of Punjab's fields.

He said that for the first time in the state, the drains have been properly cleaned in the real sense. Apart from this, efforts are being made to save the underground water.

Divulging about the works being done by the prison department, Bains said that 2829 mobile phones and 1544 sim cards have been confiscated from various jails of the state of Punjab till date after the government assumed power. "Punjab government has adopted a zero tolerance policy regarding the use of mobile phones in jails and action has also been taken against many officials in these cases", he said, while adding that as per the decision of the state government, any prisoner found with a mobile phone will be remanded by the district police for throughout investigation into the matter.

S. Bains said that the government is in touch with reputed companies including BSNL, BECIL, ECIL and BEL to install jammer in jails. He said that till now drug survey of 26000 prisoners has been conducted. Of which, about 2600 drug addict prisoners have enrolled in Peer Support.

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SPECIAL CAMP FOR DISTRIBUTING ARTIFICIAL LIMBS ON AUG 18 AT MALOUT

Dr. Baljit Kaur appealed disables to take advantage of camp

Chandigarh, August 16:A special camp is being organized on August 18 at Edward Ganj, Malout for distribution of artificial limbs among disabled persons. The camp is being presided by Social Security, Women and Child Development Minister Dr. Baljit Kaur.

Divulging the detail, Cabinet Minister said that special camp is being organised with the support of Alimco to provide artificial limbs to disabled persons. In the first phase, assessment of disabled persons will be done and in the second phase artificial limbs will be distributed.

She said that prior to this camp, the registration of disabled persons is being done through Common Service Centres. She appealed to the disabled persons to get their registration done at CSCs to take advantage of camp. The registration of the disabled person will be done on the spot as well, she added.

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Vigilance registers case for allotting transportation tenders on fake registration numbers of vehicles

One proprietor of private firm arrested by VB

Chandigarh August 16:The Punjab Vigilance Bureau (VB) on Tuesday registered a case against the owner/partners of Gurdas Ram & company as well as officers/officials of state Food & Civil Supplies department, and employees of concerned procurement agencies for committing irregularities in accepting labour, cartage and transportation tenders for grain markets in Ludhiana district. In this regard accused proprietor Telu Ram of village Udhanwal, SBS Nagar has been arrested by the VB range Ludhiana.

Disclosing this here today a spokesperson of the State Vigilance Bureau (VB) said after verification of allegations levelled in complaint no 72/2022, a FIR No. 11 Dt 16-08-2022 u/s 420, 409, 467, 468, 471, 120 B IPC and 7, 8, 12, 13(2) Prevention of Corruption Act has been registered against Telu Ram, Jagroop Singh and Sandeep Bhatia, proprietors of above mentioned private firm besides government officials.

Giving more details he informed that during the investigation by the VB, it has been found that at the time of submitting tenders for the year 2020-21 with regard to labour, cartage and transportation works in Ludhiana district, the lists of vehicles submitted by the above mentioned contractors were containing registration numbers of scooters/motorcycles/cars etc. which were not verified by concerned officers/officials of district tender committee due to criminal connivance with each other. He added that as per policy of the department it was mandatory for the committee to reject the technical bid for the above mentioned reason but the same was not done.

The spokesperson further revealed that the in gate passes pertaining to loading/unloading of food grains, the registration numbers of vehicles used for the carriage have been found to be of scooters/motorcycles/cars etc. as such vehicles cannot transport goods.

He added that details of the registration numbers of the said vehicles as well as the quantity of the commodity mentioned in these gate passes prima facie appears to be a case of fake reporting and embezzlement of the food grains mentioned in these gate passes.

He informed that on the basis of these gate passes the department officials have made payments to Telu Ram contractor, Jagroop Singh, owner/partner of Gurdas Ram & Company and Sandeep Bhatia contractor without verifying the same.

In this regard, the VB has registered a case against the above mentioned private persons as well as department officials accused for submitting and accepting fake documents, conniving with each other for committing misappropriation and fake transportation of goods. Further investigation in this case is under progress, he said.

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Punjab Assembly will be paperless soon: Sandhwan

- Reviews Meeting of the Committee on Computerization and Digitization

- Committee members reviewed the work of installing computers in the Assembly Hall

Chandigarh, August 16:Punjab Vidhan Sabha Speaker Kultar Singh Sandhwan on Tuesday said that soon the entire official working of the Vidhan Sabha will be paperless and the work of installing computers on the tables of all MLAs is in full swing.

After the meeting of the Committee on Computerization and Digitization in the Punjab Vidhan Sabha here today, all the members also reviewed the work of installing computers in the Vidhan Sabha Hall.

Presiding over the meeting, Speaker Kultar Singh Sandhwan urged the concerned departments to intensify efforts to implement the National e-Vidhan Application so that the entire proceedings of the Vidhan Sabha could be paper-free at the earliest. Finance Minister Harpal Singh Cheema assured that there would be no dearth of funds for all this work.

The meeting was attended by Finance Minister Harpal Singh Cheema, Administrative Reforms Minister Gurmeet Singh Meet Hayer, Parliamentary Affairs Minister Inderbir Singh Nijjar, PWD Minister Harbhajan Singh ETO, Leader of Opposition Partap Singh Bajwa, MLA Narinder Kaur Bharaj, Principal Secretary PWD Anurag Verma, Principal Secretary Administrative Reforms Tejveer Singh, Principal Secretary Finance Ajoy Kumar Sinha, Director, Administrative Reforms Girish Dayalan and Secretary, Punjab Vidhan Sabha Surinder Pal were also present on the occasion.

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Sandhwan launches Shaheed Bhagat Singh Education Fund

Chandigarh, August 16: Punjab Vidhan Sabha Speaker Kultar Singh Sandhwan and Minister of Higher Education Gurmeet Singh Meet Hayer along with, Rajya Sabha member Vikramjit Singh Sahney has launched Shaheed Bhagat Singh Education Fund for funding the economically weak bright students for higher studies. The Fund of Rs. 50 lakhs per annum have been contributed by Vikramjit Singh Sahney, who is also President of World Punjabi Organisation and Sun Foundation.

The fund will be allocated to various bright economically weak students who want to pursue higher studies but could not do it due to lack of funds. A Committee has been formed under the Chairmanship of Kultar Singh Sandhwan and Vice Chairman Gurmeet Singh Meet Hayer to scrutinize and decide the scholarship to the needy students.

Sahney also announced that free skills will be provided to the youth of Punjab in various job oriented courses all over the Punjab free of cost. Five such world skill centers are being set up by his NGO Sun Foundation in partnership with Punjab government. World Skill Centre is already running in Amritsar where one thousand youth are being provided jobs.

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Sandhwan condoles death of ITBP jawans in bus accident

Chandigarh, August 16:Punjab Vidhan Sabha Speaker Kultar Singh Sandhawan has expressed grief over the death of seven Indo-Tibetan Border Police (ITBP) jawans after a bus fell into a river due to brake failure in Jammu and Kashmir's Pahalgam. He has prayed to God for the speedy recovery of the soldiers injured in this accident.

In his condolence message, the Speaker said that he was deeply saddened to learn about this unfortunate news. Sandhwan wished the injured jawans a speedy recovery and peace to the souls of the martyred and expressed deepest condolences to the bereaved families.

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NEW TEHSIL COMPLEX TO COME UP AT GURUHARSAHAI

MOVE AIMED AT FACILITATING PEOPLE FOR ROUTINE ADMINISTRATIVE WORKS

CHANDIGARH, AUGUST 16:As per commitment of Punjab government led by Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann to provide best in class infrastructure in the state for facilitating people, a new Tehsil complex equipped with ultra modren facilities will come up at GuruHarsahai.

Divulging the details, PWD Minister Harbhajan Singh ETO that State government is determined to alleviate the service delivery conditions and facilitate the general public in day-to-day administration. He said that Ferozepur District sub division Guruharsahai didn’t have a Tehsil Complex and the public had to face great difficulties in getting government facilities and services. Harbhajan Singh, informed that to facilitate fast delivery of services to the public it has been decided to construct a Tehsil Complex at Guruharsahai with all the modern facilities.

He said that the complex will house the offices of Sub Divisional Magistrate, Tehsildar, along with Fard Center & Patwar Station under one roof. He said that the project cost of the proposed complex is Rs. 619.35 lacs and tenders for the construction have already been floated and construction will start in the month of October.

It was also informed by the Minister that two very important educational institutes are coming up in Ferozepur & Fazilka Districts. One ITI at Tibbi Kalan (Block Mamdot) costing 760 lacs and one degree college at Abohar (partially commissioned) costing 1474 lacs. Both the projects are about 90% completed and will be fully commissioned in the next three months.

The Minister said that the Tehsil Complex will go a long way in giving hassle free services to the public of border area villages who have remained ignored and deprived of basic needs and the coming up educational institutes will provide the youth of the border area opportunities in the field of education and vocational courses to make them self-sufficient.

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CHIEF SECRETARY REVIEWS WORK OF HOMI BHABHA CANCER HOSPITAL AND RESEARCH CENTER

  • COST EFFECTIVE CANCER TREATMENT TO GET A BOOST

Chandigarh, August 16:In order to take stock of the current status of Homi Bhabha Cancer Hospital and Research Center at Chandigarh which would bolster the cost effective cancer treatment in State, the Chief Secretary Vijay Kumar Janjua has reviewed the progress of the prestigious project.

In the aftermath of the meeting, the Chief Secretary visited the site of center at Mullanpur (New Chandigarh) to gain firsthand knowledge of the ground reality. He also visited the patients being treated in various departments.

Briefing the Chief Secretary, Prof. Ashish Gulia, Deputy Director, Homi Bhabha Cancer Hospital and Research Centre apprised that till date approximately 300 patients have received treatment in the centre.

Notably, Homi bhabha cancer hosptial and research center is a 300 bedded facility which is partially functioning at present. The OPDs of various departments such as surgical oncology, medical oncology, radiation oncology, preventive oncology, anesthesia and palliative care have been started, in addition to above, state of art facilities like MRI, CT, mammography, digital radiography, LINAC RT , Brachytherapy are available for the management of various kind of cancers. Dr Gulia also updated about seamless interconnecativity between HBCHRC New Chandigarh and HBCH Sangrur for reporting of various investigations.

The current facility also harbours a day care facility for administration of chemotherapy and minor OT for biopsy and superficial surgeries.

Remaining part of the facility is likely to get completed in about 6 months time and all 300 beds will be functional to provide world class cancer care to the patients not only from Punjab but from various neighbouring states like Jammu & Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh, Haryana, Uttrakhand & Rajasthan.

The meeting was also attended by Additional Chief Secretary to Chief Minister A. Venu Prasad, Principal Secretary Urban Development and Housing and Finance AK Sinha, Principal Secretary Industries and Commerce Dilip Kumar, Secretary Health Ajoy Sharma, Special Principal Secretary to Chief Minister Ravi Bhagat, Deputy Commissioner SAS Nagar Amit Talwar, and SSP SAS Nagar Vivek Soni.

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PUNJAB ASKS CENTRE TO PROVIDE VACCINES FOR CATTLE

ANIMAL HUSBANDRY MINISTER LALJIT SINGH BHULLAR DISCUSSES ARRANGEMENTS & AVAILABILITY OF VACCINE WITH UNION MINISTER FOR ANIMAL HUSBANDRY PARSHOTTAM RUPALA

UNION MINISTER ASSURES EARLY RESOLUTION OF THE DEMANDS

Chandigarh, August 16:The Punjab Animal Husbandry, Fisheries & Dairy Development Minister Laljit Singh Bhullar, on Tuesday, vehemently raised the demand to union government for immediately making arrangement of Goat Pox vaccine in adequate quantity for over 25 lakh livestock to prevent the contagious disease Lumpy Skin effectively in the state.

Discussing the situation prevalent due to the contagion, availability of vaccine and arrangements being made by the state government for the prevention with Mr. Parshottam Rupala, Union Minister for Fisheries, Animal Husbandry and Dairying during a review meeting at Punjab Bhawan, here, the Cabinet Minister Mr. Bhullar apprised that the state government has administered about 2.05 lakh doses of Goat Pox vaccine to healthy cattle up till last evening and the affected animals are being persistently monitored and adequate medication & other precautions are being ensured as per the GoI guidelines.

The Punjab Animal Husbandry Minister informed that he had visited various districts of Punjab to get first-hand information about the problems of milk producers. And, this disease is spreading mostly among cattle and districts of Fazilka, Sri Muktsar Sahib, Faridkot, Ferozepur, Bathinda, Tarn Taran, Jalandhar and Amritsar are most affected with the infectious disease.

Mr. Bhullar also said that the state government is facing a problem as there is huge difference in price of different vaccines. Hence, the uniformity in the price and availability of doses in sufficient quantity should be ensured.

After listening to the demands, the Union Minister Mr. Parshottam Rupala assured that the price of vaccines will be rationalized and the supply of vaccine in the required quantity to the state will be ensured. Mr. Rupala also directed to prepare isolation wards for affected animals to prevent the disease from spreading further.

Elaborating about the arrangements being carried out in the state, Mr. Vikas Pratap, Principal Secretary, Animal Husbandry said that Punjab has around 25.31 lakh cattle and 40.15 lakh buffaloes. As many as 74,325 animals have been suspected to be affected by this disease. Of which, 39248 animals are cured till date in the state, while 3359 animal deaths have been reported but these are not confirmed cases of Lumpy Skin Disease.

He further informed that the Punjab has so far received around 3.16 lakh doses in three phases, which have already been sent to all districts across the state and till date 2,02,484 cattle have been vaccinated.

Mr. Vikas Pratap apprised that Punjab contributes 1.31 per cent to the national livestock population, while the milk production in the state is 6.70 per cent of the national production. Therefore, it is necessary to pay required attention to this important agri-subsidiary occupation.

He said that Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann has constituted a Group of Ministers to deal with the lumpy skin disease. The committee is continuously monitoring the situation closely and ensuring required logistic and other support to deal with the disease.

He said that apart from 673 vaccination teams of the Animal Husbandry Department, final year students and interns of Bachelor of Veterinary Science (B.V.Sc) have also been roped in vaccination and awareness campaigns. These teams are regularly following the guidelines issued by GoI for the treatment and control of disease in the state, which include isolation of affected animals, control of movement of animals and farm workers, disinfection of farm premises and control of vectors so that further spread of disease can be restricted.

Prominent amongst others who were present in the meeting included Dr. Parveen Malik, Animal Husbandry Commissioner, GoI and Director Animal Husbandry, Punjab Dr. Subhash Goel.

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— DECISIVE WAR AGAINST DRUGS: PUNJAB POLICE NABS THOSE POs/ABSCONDERS WHO WERE EVADING ARREST SINCE 1980s &1990s

— DRIVE TO ARREST POs/ABSCONDERS IN NDPS ACT CASES WITNESSES SIGNIFICANT SURGE AS TOLL REACHES 186 IN SIX WEEKS

— 335 DRUG SMUGGLERS/SUPPLIERS HELD WITH 9.76KG HEROIN, 8.68KG OPIUM, 11.56KG GANJA, 49k PHARMA OPIOIDS, Rs 40.50 LAKH DRUG MONEY IN PAST WEEK

— ON DIRECTIONS OF CHIEF MINISTER BHAGWANT MANN, PUNJAB POLICE COMMITTED TO ROOTING OUT DRUG MENACE FROM THE STATE

CHANDIGARH, August 16:With the special drive launched on the directions of Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann to arrest Proclaimed offenders (POs)/absconders in NDPS Act cases has entered the 7th week, the weekly arrests of POs/absconders have witnessed a significant surge as Punjab Police has managed to arrest as many as 45 such POs/absconders in last one week. So far, a total of 186 POs/Absconders in NDPS Act cases— including 46 nabbed from out of state, have been arrested since July 5, 2022.

Divulging details, Inspector General of Police (IGP) Headquarters Sukhchain Singh Gill said that the Police teams have even managed to arrest those POs/absconders in NDPS act, who have been evading arrest since the 1980s and 1990s.

Citing instances, he said that Gurdeep Singh alias Kaku of Kotla Hoshiarpur, who was declared PO in November 1985, has been arrested by the Ludhiana Commissionerate Police, Amarjit Singh, a PO from 1988 has been arrested by Fatehgarh Sahib Police and Mohinder Singh of village Dabalkheri in Haryana, who was declared PO in 1989, has been arrested by Sangrur Police. Similarly, at least three nabbed POs are those, who have been evading arrest since the 1990s, he added.

Giving weekly updates on drugs, the IGP said that Punjab Police have arrested 335 drug smugglers/suppliers after registering 251 first information reports (FIRs), including 22 commercial, under the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (NDPS) act across the state in the last one week.

The Police have also recovered 9.76Kg Heroin, 8.68Kg opium, 11.56Kg Ganja, nine quintals of poppy husk, and 49k tablets/capsules/injections/vials of Pharma opioids besides recovering Rs 40.50 lakh drug money after carrying out cordon and search operations in drug-affected areas beside laying nakas at vulnerable routes across the state, he said.

IGP Sukhchain Singh Gill said that the Punjab Police besides tightening the noose around the drug smugglers/suppliers has also been doing all the possible efforts to keep youth away from drugs and helping to rehabilitate those who have already fallen prey to this menace. He said that all the CPs/SSPs have been conducting different activities including public meetings, visiting drug-affected villages, conducting seminars, holding joint meetings with MLAs, Sarpanches, and Councillors besides involving NGOs and Youth Clubs to work against drugs in their respective districts to sensitize the youth about the harmful and ill-effects of drugs.

Meanwhile, the DGP has strictly ordered all the CPs/SSPs to further tighten the noose around the drug smugglers by identifying all top drug smugglers and the hotspots infamous for drug smuggling in their jurisdictions and launching a combing operation to nab all those selling/smuggling drugs. He also directed the Police chiefs to effectively forfeit the property of all the arrested drug smugglers so that their ill-gotten money could be recovered.

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