Chandigarh, July 14-Those coming to Punjab for less than 72 hours are now exempt from the mandatory home quarantine, and only need to submit a formal undertaking at the border check post.

Announcing this relaxation for inbound domestic travelers, Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh on Tuesday said it had been decided to provide this concession to facilitate students wishing to come for examinations or business travelers etc, whose stay in the state is less than 72 hours from the time of their arrival. It has been decided to exempt such travelers from the 14-day mandatory home quarantine requirement that remains in place for domestic inbound travelers in Punjab, he said.

The exempt travelers will, however, need to submit a formal undertaking with the OIC of the check post in a standard format provided on COVA app, which they would have to download on their phones. Besides entering their details in the app’s travelers’ information section, these persons would have to undertake that the COVA app will remain active throughout their period of stay in Punjab.

The additional SOPs for such travelers requires them to voluntarily submit that they are not coming from any containment zone and undertake not to stay for more than 72 Hrs in Punjab from the time of arrival in the state. During this period, they shall commit to monitoring their health and maintaining distance from those around, and also interact with the assigned surveillance team in case they suffer from any symptoms consistent with COVID-19 and will immediately call at 104.

All due precautions would have to be strictly adhered to and non-adherence to wearing of mask/social distancing etc would make them liable to be acted upon under section 188 of IPC as per provision of “The Epidemic Diseases Act 1897”, said the Chief Minister.

Further, if within a week of return any such person is tested positive then he/she will have to immediately contact Government of Punjab at 104 and assist them in contact tracing.

It may be recalled that while the Government of India had recently waived off the requirement of home quarantine for domestic travellers and replaced the same with self-monitoring, Captain Amarinder has made it clear that quarantine restrictions will continue to remain in place in Punjab on account of rising numbers. Today’s announcement is the only exemption to the rule.




Chandigarh, July 14-Further tightening the noose around gangsters in the state, the Punjab Police have busted a gang of international arms smugglers and highway robbers, with the arrest of two dreaded gangsters, including proclaimed offender Gurpreet Singh @ Gora and Germanjeet Singh.

A bullet-proof jacket, along with a major haul of arms and ammunition smuggled, has been seized by the police from the gangsters, who were allegedly also involved in smuggling of weapons from across the border into India.

The duo were arrested by the Jalandhar (Rural) Police from Bhogpur and recovered a bullet proof jacket, and a .455 bore Pistol provided by gangster Gopi Ghanshampuriya, two Glock 09 mm Pistols with four live cartridges, one pump action 12 bore Rifle, one .32 bore Revolver, one .30 bore Pistol and live cartridges were recovered from the gangsters, DGP Dinkar Gupta disclosed, adding that the Verna car they were travelling was also seized.

Gora is already facing criminal charges in 14 cases in various districts of Punjab for attempt to murder, assault, snatching, dacoity, gang war and others, and is a PO in 13 of these cases, said Gupta.

Giving details of the operation, Navjot Mahal, SSP Jalandhar Rural said that police had got a tip-off that Gurpreet Singh @ Gora S/O Chamkaur Singh R/O Vill Bariar PS Ghumaan, and his aide German Jeet Singh S/O Harbhajan Singh R/O Vill Jawandpur PS Vairowal, were going towards Behram in a Verna car no. PB 46 Q 49512 and were planning to commit some heinous crime, such as snatching vehicles from highway at gunpoint. A special surveillance was quickly organised at check posts in the entire area, and a team of special staff of Jalandhar Rural Police was able to apprehend the car- borne assailants.

The team recovered from the duo foreign and country made weapons, including one Pistol .30 Bore with four live rounds, one revolver .32 Bore with six live rounds, a bulletproof jacket and the Verna car used by them in various crimes from the spot.

Gupta said the disclosure statement made before police by Gurpreet Singh further led to the recovery of 12 Bore Pump Action Rifle with five live cartridges, two 9mm Glock Pistols (Made in Austria) with two live rounds (etched with Pakistan Ordinance Factory markings), one revolver .455 bore with five live rounds, 19 rounds of .32 bore revolver and eight rounds of .32 bore special revolver. All these weapons were packed in a plastic pipe and buried in earth on canal bank near Rayyia (Amritsar).

Gupta said during preliminary interrogations, Gora revealed that he was in close contact with Baljinder Singh Billa Mandiala, who was well connected with Pakistan based drug and arms smugglers, Mirza and Ahmdeen, and had received many consignments of weapons and drugs from them in the Ferozpur area. Gupta said Pakistani Drug/ Arms smuggler Mirza has been working as courier on Indo-Pak border for Khalistan Libration Force and had smuggled many weapon consignments to Indian territory.

It has also been learned that a part of 05 AK-47 weapon consignment recovered from the Indo-Pak border on September 24, 2019 by STF Punjab, was also meant for this apprehended criminal Billa Mandiala.

Moreover, most of the weapons recovered from Billa Mandiala also came from Indo-Pak border and police is also investigating the role of militants in the supply chain of illegal weapons which is still a part of investigation as police is suspecting his involvement with Pakistan based militant groups.

The DGP said Gurpreet Singh @ Gora was a member of Billa gang run by another notorious gangster Baljinder Singh @ Billa, currently lodged in jail. Through his mentor, Gora was in touch with Pakistan-based illegal arms smugglers and was regularly dealing with them to smuggle in foreign-made weapons to the Indian side.

The gang was involved in many cases of Highway Car Robberies, Ransom and Extortion, said Gupta, adding that after getting bail in cases registered against him, Gora used to live in a Gurudwara at Nanded, Pune and Himachal Pradesh in a clandestine manner.

Gupta said that the Verna car recovered from spot by Police belongs to Germanjeet Singh, who was instrumental in protecting Gurpreet from the Police glare and used to provide vehicle to him for crime.

A case under section 392, 212, 216 A, 506, and 120-B of IPC and 25, 27 Arms Act has been registered against gangsters at Bhogpur Police Station and further investigations in the case were on, he added.



CHANDIGARH, JULY 14: As part of its efforts to mitigate industry suffering and provide proactive financial assistance, Punjab has already sanctioned Rs.2165.53 crore to MSME units under Emergency Credit Line Guarantee Scheme (ECLGS) with Rs.1133.93 crore already disbursed.

Disclosing this, the Punjab Industries Minister Sunder Sham Arora said Punjab under Captain Amarinder Singh's leadership stands at 3rd position among all States in India with 94.93% sanctions.

There are approximately 1,64,769 MSME eligible loan accounts involving an eligible loan amount of Rs. 4372 Crore, the Minister said adding, of which 1,11,881 eligible borrowers opted in for the scheme till last week.

Following adverse impact of COVID-19 pandemic on various industries/sectors, Department of Financial Services, Ministry of Finance Govt. of India through National Credit Guarantee Trustee Company Ltd. (NCGTC) has introduced the Emergency Credit Line Guarantee Scheme (ECLGS) for providing 100% guarantee coverage for additional working capital term loans upto 20% of the entire outstanding loan liability up to ₹ 25 Crore as on February, 29 2020 i.e. maximum loan amount of Rs.5 crore, subject to certain stipulations, as per the Scheme.

Consequently, a special SLBC was convened as per the request of the department to expedite the sanctions and disbursement as per the target given by the Govt. of India i.e.100% sanction by 15th July 2020 and 100% disbursed by 31st July 2020.

Accordingly, Various Bank’s Board have approved their new scheme under “Guaranteed Emergency Credit Line (GECL)” for providing relief to affected units to meet their operational liabilities and restart their business. The finance extended under the Scheme shall be covered by Guarantee Coverage of NCGTC to the extent of 100%.

Majority of banks in Punjab has started financing under the scheme.
In order to coordinate with eligible MSMEs and Financing Institutions and also with Industrial Associations, Government of Punjab had constituted a ECLGS Cell in the Department of Industries and Commerce.


Shabad Gayan competitions dedicated to 400th birth anniversary of Guru Tegh Bahadur Ji held

Patiala district bagged top spot with maximum participation

Chandigarh, July 14-In a series of events dedicated to 400th birth anniversary of Guru Tegh Bahadur initiated by the Punjab Government, students of Patiala district bagged the honor to participate in maximum number in these online Shabad Gayan competitions being conducted by School Education Department under the leadership of School Education Minister Vijay Inder Singla. These competitions which were being held throughout Punjab under the supervision of Secretary School Education Mr. Krishan Kumar, started with chant the hymns of Guru Tegh Bahadur Ji with devotion. 20410 students of Secondary, Middle and Primary wings of government schools have enthusiastically participated in it. Differently abled children were also participated in all the three categories.

Informing this here today, Spokesperson of School Education Department said that Patiala District has bagged overall first position from all over Punjab in Elementary category with 1442 participants. Patiala district also got the first spot in combined wing category of secondary and elementary with 2316 participants. Jalandhar district came second with 1770 contestants, Ludhiana came third with 1624 contestants and Sangrur came fourth with 1484 participants. These competitions were held at school level and block level competitions will be followed.

Spokesperson further said that Patiala district secured first with 1442 contestants in primary category, Ludhiana secured second spot with 795 contestants and Jalandhar came third with 794 contestants in this category. In secondary wing, Jalandhar district bagged first position with 449 contestants, Sangrur got second spot with 437 contestants and Ludhiana secured third spot with 405 contestants. He said that Sangrur district came first with 489 contestants, Patiala second with 449 contestants and Sri Fatehgarh Sahib came third with 448 contestants in Middle wing category of this school level competition.

Spokesperson said that Block Khuhiyan Sarwar (Fazilka) got first spot with 194 contestants, Sangrur Block second with 157 contestants and Patiala 1 Block third with 154 contestants from across the state in primary wing category. Block Bassi Pathana (Sri Fatehgarh) Sahib secured top position with 86 contestants, Mansa Block second with 79 contestants and Jhunir Block (Mansa) third with 71 contestants from across Punjab in middle wing category. Block Sherpur (Sangrur) secured top spot with 67 contestants, Budhlada-1 (Mansa) second with 66 contestants, Bareta (Mansa) and Rampura Phool (Bathinda) both secured third spot with 63 contestants each in the state.