Chandigarh, January 14:All the Punjab Ministers on Tuesday demanded, in one voice, disciplinary action by the Congress leadership a against Rajya Sabha MP Partap Singh Bajwa for raising a banner of revolt against Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh on public platforms.

The issue came up for informal discussion just before the Cabinet meeting here on Tuesday.

There was consensus among the ministers, all senior leaders of the Congress, on the need for action against Bajwa. They pointed out that despite repeated pleas asking him to express his opinions within the party forum, Bajwa continued to criticise Captain Amarinder Singh and his government in media and other places. The MP had gone so far as to seek a change at the helm of the government, they noted with consternation, terming it an act of sheer indiscipline and urging the party leadership to take immediate action against the former Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee (PPCC) chief.

The ministers accused Bajwa of playing into the hands of the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) and the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) by pitching himself against his own party leadership, especially at a time when the entire opposition was in a state of disarray, posing no real challenge to the Congress in the state.

Such rebellion, if not nipped in the bud, could send the wrong message down the rank and file of the Punjab Congress, which had been on a high since taking over the state’s reins around three years, said the ministers. While the Congress was run on democratic principles, where every member had a say, such public display of difference of opinion and mutinous declarations from a senior member were detrimental to the interest of the party, said the senior leaders, adding that, under no circumstances, could this kind of behaviour be tolerated or allowed to continue.

It was absolutely imperative, said Rana Gurmeet Singh Sodhi, to act against Bajwa as such behaviour would weaken the party. “We cannot allow this to become a free for all,” said Charanjit Singh Channi, while Brahm Mohindra wanted the Chief Minister to take up the issue with the Congress high command in Delhi. Any dissent should be discussed and resolved within the party forum, said Mohindra.

Manpreet Singh Badal pointed out that history showed dissension of any sort had always harmed the Congress. “We succeeded in winning so many seats in Punjab only because we were united,” he said, adding that this unity could not be allowed to be destroyed at any cost.

Om Prakash Soni, Sadhu Singh Dharamsot and Tript Rajinder Singh Bajwa were also quick to point out that Partap Bajwa’s actions were extremely damaging for the party. Urgent and immediate action was needed against him, they felt.

Other members of the Council of Ministers, namely Aruna Chaudhary, Razia Sultana, Sukhjinder Singh Randhawa, Sukhjinder Singh Sarkaria, Gurpreet Singh Kangar, Vijay Inder Singla, Sunder Sham Arora and Bharat Bhushan Ashu, were in total agreement with their colleagues in seeking urgent intervention by the party high command in the matter.

The demand for action against Bajwa came in the wake of his latest remarks, declaring that he would not support Captain Amarinder’s leadership for a second term unless action is taken in the sacrilege cases. The Chief Minister, said the ministers, had made it clear from the outset that he was committed to bringing the culprits of the sacrilege incidents to book, but would not indulge in vindictive politics. Bajwa’s stand smacked of vendetta and had no place in a principled party like the Congress, they asserted.

Terming as `shocking’ Bajwa’s remarks that Punjab Congress could only survive without Captain Amarinder, the ministers pointed out that the Congress, under the present government, had swept all elections in the state since the 2017 Assembly polls, which clearly showed the people were happy and satisfied with his style of functioning, and the party was doing immensely well with him as chief minister.

Further, they pointed out, that under Captain Amarinder’s dynamic leadership, Punjab had witnessed major resurgence on all counts and was progressing at a significant pace, despite the poor economic legacy inherited by the government. But Bajwa was clearly not interested in development and only wanted to make a political point, to promote his self-interest, with his frequent diatribes against the Chief Minister, they added

Pointing out that Captain Amarinder had himself, on several occasions, stressed the need to hand over the baton to the younger generation, the leaders, however, said the time was not ripe for such a move in Punjab, which had suffered major problems under the SAD-BJP regime. Punjab needed the visionary leadership of Captain Amarinder and clearly did not want someone like Bajwa, who seemed to spend all his time indulging in negative and destructive politics, at the helm.

Describing as unfortunate Bajwa’s comments on employment, the ministers lambasted him for focusing on petty politics instead of strengthening the Chief Minister’s hands in his efforts to ensure jobs for all and progress for every citizen of Punjab. At a time when every member of the party should be involved in reviving the state’s economy and powering its growth, Bajwa seemed bent on pulling the party and the government down, they said, demanding immediate action against the MP.



CHANDIGARH, JANUARY 14:-To facilitate business for Micro Small and Medium Enterprises (MSMEs), the Punjab Cabinet led by Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh on Tuesday gave the go-ahead for bringing the Punjab Right to Business Act 2020 in the forthcoming 2-day special session of the Assembly.

The Act is aimed at easing the regulatory burden on newly incorporated MSMEs by providing enabling provision of self-declaration, besides exemption from certain approvals and inspections for establishment and operations of MSMEs in Punjab.

With this Act, the MSMEs in the State will get a big relief from the tedious process of getting Regulatory Approvals before setting up of the units.

The Act would encompass various regulatory services, including sanction of building plans, issuance of completion/occupation certificate for buildings; registration of new trade license under the Punjab Municipal Act, 1911 and the Punjab Municipal Corporation Act 1976; sanction of building plans; issuance of completion/occupation certificate; change of land use under the Punjab Regional and Town Planning and Development Act 1995; application for fire ‘No Objection Certificate’ under the Punjab Fire Prevention and Fire Safety Act 2004; approval of factory building plan (except for industries involving hazardous processes as per first schedule of factories Act, 1948) under the Punjab Factory Rules, 1952; and registration of shop establishment under Punjab Shops and Commercial Establishment Act, 1958.

The Act provides for a District Bureau of Enterprise (DBE) in each District headed by the Deputy Commissioner as Chief Executive Officer, while General Manager of the District Industries Centre (DIC) would act as the Additional Chief Executive Officer, with other members to be notified by the Government from time to time. The DBE shall be designated as District Level Nodal Agency, which would work under the overall superintendence, direction and control of the State Government and the State Nodal Agency.

The District Level Nodal Agency will assist and facilitate MSME enterprises in the state, maintain record of ‘Declaration of Intent’ received and issue ‘certificate of In Principle Approval’ under the Act. The nodal agency, on receipt of the Declaration of Intent, shall issue a ‘Certificate of In Principle Approval’ to new enterprises being set up in Approved Industrial Parks within three working days. For new enterprises being set up outside the approved Industrial Park, the decision on issuance of ‘Certificate of In Principle Approval’ shall be taken by the District Level Nodal Agency within a period of 15 working days, as per the recommendations of Scrutiny Committee.

After the approval of the Nodal Agency, a new MSME unit will be able to start its project immediately and shall have the option to apply for Regulatory Approvals within three and half years from the issuance of ‘Certificate of In Principle Approval’.

It is noteworthy that Punjab’s Industry is dominated by Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises and has a rich industrial base of MSME units manufacturing auto components, bicycle parts, hosiery, sports goods, agricultural implements and several other sectors. The State Government under Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh accords the highest priority to enhance the ease of doing business in the state for accelerated growth and progress.


Krishan Kumar Budhu assuming charge of Vice Chairman of PUNSUP in the presence of Food and Civil Supply Minister Mr. Bharat Bhushan Ashu

CHANDIGARH,14.01.20-Krishan Kumar Budhu assuming charge of Vice Chairman of PUNSUP in the presence of Food and Civil Supply Minister Mr. Bharat Bhushan Ashu and Advisor to CM Punjab Mr. Bharat Inder Singh Chahal on Tuesday at Chandigarh.


Awareness leads to change in mindset towards girl child: Balbir Singh Sidhu

Health department celebrates ‘Dhiyan di Lohri’ with fanfare in Govt. Hospitals

Chandigarh/Mohali, January 14:A state-level event ‘Dhiyan di Lohri’ was celebrated by the Health Department at the district hospital here on Tuesday. The Health and Family Welfare Minister Mr Balbir Singh Sidhu lit up the ‘Lohri’ bonfire and greeted the people on the occasion of Maghi and Lohri.

While addressing mothers with new born children and other people, he stressed that giving due respect to girls was very important. He said that he wanted to congratulate the residents of Punjab that due to widespread awareness, the mindset of the people is gradually changing towards girl child and the trend of female foeticide in the state is going down significantly in comparison to previous times. He expressed the hope that due to the efforts of the health department and the changing mentality of the people, the number of girls in the state would be equal to boys in the near future. He said that there are many areas in Punjab where the number of girls is higher than that of boys but there is yet lot to be done and with the collaboration of people, the problem can be eliminated forever.

He said girls have touched heights in every field today. In many areas, girls have surpassed boys. Girls are no less than anybody, we need to change our mindset towards them. He said, "If we celebrate the Lohri of girls today, thus we can be able to celebrate the Lohri of the boys in future. If we continue to kill girls in the womb, then who will marry the boys? Whether it is a girl or a boy, the real wealth of society is a well-educated generation.”

Earlier, the Health Minister went to the maternity wards of the hospital and distributed winter clothes and blankets to newborns and their mothers. A total of 51 girls and 16 boys were given gifts. Lohri functions were held today in almost all the government health institutions and Health & Wellness Centers in the district. On the occasion, Manvesh Singh Sidhu, Managing Director, Punjab Health Systems Corporation, Balwinder Singh, OSD to Health Minister, Harkesh Chand Sharma, Political Secretary to the Health Minister, Dr. Avneet Kaur, Director Health, Dr Reeta Bhardwaj, Director (Family Welfare), Civil Surgeon Dr Manjit Singh, Dr Nidhi, Dr Areet Kaur and other health officials were present.



Chandigarh, January 14-The Governor of Punjab has summoned the 10th (Special) Session of 15th Punjab Vidhan Sabha at 11:00 am instead of 10 am on January 16, 2020.

Giving details, an official spokesperson of the Punjab Vidhan Sabha said that earlier the timing of the Session was scheduled at 10:00 am. Now, the Governor of Punjab has summoned the 10th (Special) Session on 16th January, 2020 at 11:00 am in the Punjab Vidhan Sabha Hall, Vidhan Bhavan, Chandigarh.



CHANDIGARH, JANUARY 14-The Punjab Government has decided to fill up as many as 3186 posts of various cadres in teaching and non-teaching staff in schools.

The Cabinet, led by Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh, on Tuesday approved the School Education Department proposal to this effect.

The move will help plug a major gap in the school staff, thereby improving the standards of education, an official spokesperson said after a meeting of the Cabinet.

During the meeting, the Chief Minister underlined the need for serious relook at the school curriculum from the point of making students job-ready. Pointing out that vocational courses had been introduced for senior classes in various fields, such as hospitality & mobile phone repair etc, he stressed on the importance of more thrust on vocational teaching.

In line with the proposal of the School Education Department, the Cabinet gave nod to fill up 132 posts of Deputy District Education Officer, Principal of Government Senior Secondary Schools, 311 Headmasters/Headmistresses, 2182 masters/mistresses in various subjects, 32 Block Primary Education Officers (BPEOs), 500 Elementary Trained Teachers, 04 law officers and 25 legal assistants.

The annual financial implication of the move, for the first three years during the probation period, would be Rs. 42 crore per annum approximately. However, once the probation period is over and the employees are given the full scale, the annual financial implication will be Rs. 197 crore per annum approximately, said the spokesperson.

Notably, all these posts, except Principals, Headmasters and BPEOs, would be filled up through the Directorate of Recruitment, already set up in the Department since October 12, 2015. The posts of Principals, Headmasters and BPEOs shall be filled up through the Punjab Public Service Commission.

In order to utilise the services of clerks optimally, the Department has proposed to follow the methodology for rationalisation of clerks to dispose of the official work expeditiously as well as efficaciously.




CHANDIGARH, JANUARY 14: The Punjab Cabinet on Tuesday authorised Governor Punjab V.P.Singh Badnore to summon a 2-day Special Session of the State Assembly, while giving go-ahead for placing resolution to ratify the Constitutional 126th Amendment and enactment of Goods & Services Act.

The Cabinet, led by Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh, has decided to recommend to the Governor to summon the 10th Session of the 15th Punjab Vidhan Sabha, as per the Article 174(1) of the Constitution of India, for two days on 16th and 17th January, 2020, according to an official spokesperson.

It was decided by the Cabinet to change the timing of the commencement of the session.

The session will accordingly start on January 16 with the speech of Governor at 11 am, instead of 10 am, as scheduled earlier. On January 17, the session would begin at 10 am with obituary references, followed by presentation of a resolution to ratify The Constitution (126th Amendment) Bill, 2019.

The house would adjourn sine-die after the proposed legislative business on the same day, said the spokesperson.

The Constitution (126th Amendment) Bill, 2019 seeks to extend the reservation for Scheduled Castes in Punjab for another ten years w.e.f. January 25, 2020. It may be recalled that the Amendment Bill 126 had been passed by the Lok Sabha on December 10, 2019 and by the Rajya Sabha on December 12, 2019.

Notably, Article 334 of the Constitution of India provides reservation for Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes and special representation of the Anglo Indians in the Lok Sabha and State Legislative Assemblies. Initially, the reservation of seats was to cease in 1960 but this was extended to 1970 by the 8th Constitutional Amendment. The period of reservation was subsequently extended to 1980 and 1990 by the 23rd and 45th Constitutional Amendments respectively.

The 62nd Amendment extended the period of reservation to 2000, which was further extended to 2010 and 2020 by 79th and 95th Amendments respectively. The reservation and special representation, which was extended vide 95th Amendment for ten years, now expires on January 25, 2020.

Meanwhile, the Cabinet has also approved enactment of the Punjab Goods and Services Tax (Amendment) Ordinance, 2019, with the relevant Bill to be presented under clause 2 of Article 213 of Constitution.

The Punjab Goods and Services Tax (Amendment) Ordinance, 2019 was issued vide notification No. 25-Leg/2019 on December 31, 2019. This ordinance was promulgated in order to bring certain visionary amendments in Punjab Goods and Services Tax Act, 2017 for facilitation of taxpayers and promotion of ‘Ease of doing Business’.

The Cabinet has also approved the annual administrative report of the Civil Aviation Department for the year 2018-19, according to the spokesperson.