PUNJAB CM LAUDS FARMERS FOR INCREASED CROP DIVERSIFICATION WHILE SUCCESSFUL KHARIF SOWING AMID COVID PANDEMIC

·UNDERLINES NEED TO DIVERSIFY FURTHER TO SAVE PRECIOUS WATER RESOURCE & BOOST FARMERS’ INCOME

Chandigarh, August 3: Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh on Monday lauded the state’s farmers for successful diversification of nearly 2.28 lakh hectares area out of the traditional paddy cultivation cycle in the current Kharif sowing season, even while ensuring successful completion of crop acreage in terms of sowing of the Kharif 2020 crop.

The success of the farmers in their diversification efforts, even amid the Covid pandemic, has also been recognised by the Ministry of Agriculture, Cooperation and Farmer’s Welfare, Government of India, which documented the same in a Press Information Bureau release of 31st July 2020, the Chief Minister pointed out.

The diversification across 2.28 lakh hectares will help save nearly 2.7 billion cubic meters of ground water and about Rs. 200 crores power consumption in the state, thus supporting the Punjab government’s efforts to preserve the scarce water resources, said Captain Amarinder.

While reviewing the sowing activities in the State here on Monday, the Chief Minister said that despite migratory labour shortage in the ongoing kharif season, the state has not only completed its kharif sowing but has also continued to fulfil its objective of diversification even in these difficult times.

The Chief Minister directed the ACS Development to accord top priority to diversification of agriculture, particularly in the light of the diminishing returns on farmer’s produce. The returns for farmers have been decreasing due to squeezed margins on account of almost stagnated MSP and continuously increasing costs of agricultural inputs. Farmers should be motivated to go for crop diversification in a big way by opting for crops like sugarcane, basmati, pulses, fruits & vegetables, he said, adding that this would make the state’s agrarian economy more financially sustainable and economically viable.

ACS Development Anirudh Tiwari informed the Chief Minister that Basmati sowing has been completed across 6.50 lakh hectares, against 6.30 lakh hectares last year. It is expected that acreage under Basmati will touch about 6.75 to 7.0 lakh hectares in Punjab this year.

The state government’s concerted push to use DSR technology is expected to save both ground water and power consumption, along with the natural resources of Punjab, said Tiwari, adding that around 5.50 lakh hectares of Paddy sowing had been undertaken this year through DSR. This, he said, could ultimately lead to achievement of the goal of sustainable agriculture that conserves natural resources and improves farmers’ incomes by cutting down on input costs.

The ACS informed the meeting that Cotton cultivation has been carried out across 5.01 lakh hectares, which is 1.09 lakh hectares more compared to previous year acreage of 3.92 lakh hectares. Last year, the state recorded its highest cotton productivity of 806 Kg lint per hectare.

Acreage under Maize too has seen an increase of 0.83 lakh hectares from the previous year. Last year, Maize was sown in 1.60 lakh hectares in comparison to 2.43 lakh hectares for the current season. Notably, Cotton and Maize crops have very good water saving potential for the state. Similarly, the state has achieved an increase of 5000 hectares under pulses cultivation and 1000 hectares under Sugarcane cultivation.

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Raksha Bandhan observed in jails with full adherence to COVID-19 norms

  • In observation of norms packets of ‘Rakhris’ received outside jails
  • Jails Minister congratulate entire jail staff

Chandigarh, August 3:In a unique initiative of the Jail Department, the ‘Raksha Bandhan’ was today observed in the jails without the norms regarding COVID-19 being violated. Although owing to the spread of corona virus, the family members of the jail inmates couldn’t meet their dear ones but due to the novel efforts of the department, the packets sent by the family members of the inmates were delivered to the latter in a prompt manner.

The Jails Minister, Punjab, S. Sukhjinder Singh Randhawa congratulated the department on the success of the endeavour which led to the inmates as well as their family members observe the ‘Raksha Bandhan’ thus cementing their mutual bonds. The norms with regard to COVID-19 were also ensured to be observed in the letter and spirit.

The ADGP Mr. Praveen Kumar Sinha said that as per the directions already issued to the jail superintendents, the drive to collect ‘Rakhis’ was started 8:30 AM onwards on the outer gates of the jails across the State. The arrangemenst concerning drinking water, Seating and hand sanitizer were also in place outside the jails for the convenience of the family members of the inmates.

He further said that during the entire drive, wearing of masks as well as maintenance of social distancing was also ensured. The packets containing ‘Rakhis’were duly sanitized and checked before being sent to the inmates. The jail department had also arranged for ‘Mishri’at their own level because of ban on bringing sweets.

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RIDICULES SAD LEADERSHIP FOR BLAMING GOVT ON SPURIOUS LIQUOR TRAGEDY- RANA SODHI

• SAYS IT’S NOTHING BUT POT CALLING THE KETTLE BLACK AS SIMILAR INCIDENTS HAPPENED IN THEIR TENURE IN 2012 & 2016

Chandigarh, August 3:Lambasting at the Akalis for their dubious role for blatantly accusing Captain Amarinder government for hooch tragedy, the Sports Minister Rana Gurmit Singh Sodhi said it was nothing but pot calling the kettle black as similar incidents had occurred in 2012 and 2016 in Gurdaspur and Batala respectively during their regime.

In a press statement, the Rana Sodhi said that these tragedies too claimed several lives during SAD-BJP alliance government, adding he pointed out that in the Batala case, neither any FIR was registered nor any action taken against the main accused.

Sensing the gravity of matter, the Cabinet Minister stated that Captian Amarinder immediately ordered a magisterial inquiry by a Divisional Commissioner, who has been asked to submit his report within a month. Besides, the Chief Minister also ordered suspension of, and inquiry against, seven Excise & Taxation Officers and Inspectors, along with two DSPs and four SHOs of Punjab Police, in connection with the hooch tragedy, which has so far claimed over 100 lives in the three districts of Tarn Taran, Amritsar Rural and Gurdaspur.

Launching a frontal attack on the SAD President Sukhbir Badal and former Cabinet Minister Bikram Majithia for their theatrics on the entire issue, Rana Sodhi said that everybody knew that by and large people have lost their trust and confidence in their leadership. Moreover, the SAD was on the verge of collapse as its several confidants amongst rank and file, have already joined the SAD (Democratic) led by stalwart Akali leader Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa, as they were feeling suffocated due to their autocratic style of functioning as the patriarch of Shiromani Akali Dal Parkash Singh Badal and his progeny has relegated over a century old political party to a fiefdom.

The Minister shared sympathies with the members of bereaved victim families of this tragedy and avowed that stringent action would be taken against all those involved in the case as the Chief Minister has already warned those indulging in spurious liquor business to close down it immediately or face grave consequences.

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Hooch tragedy unfortunate; Punjab Police capable to solve: Aruna Chaudhary

Chandigarh, August 3:Describing hooch tragedy unfortunate, Punjab Social Security, Women and Child Development Mrs. Aruna Chaudhary today said that Punjab Police is very much capable to crack down the entire case. She said that Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh has already ordered the suspension of seven excise officials and six policemen with immediate effect and initiated an inquiry against them besides giving strict orders to state police to bring the guilty to justice.

Mrs. Chaudhary said that the state government has also directed the police to launch statewide crackdown on spurious liquor manufacturing units that may be operating in the state and so far conducted more than 100 raids throughout the state. On the demand of CBI probe by Delhi Chief Minister, Mrs. Chaudhary said that this demand was nothing but a political gimmick and Punjab Police have great repute to solve a number of cases of similar nature. She informed that the state government has taken necessary steps to curb such mafias in the state.

Extending condolences to the families of the deceased, she said that the government has announced Rs.2 lakh compensation each to the families of the deceased. Pointing out that strict action was being taken against all those found guilty in any case of illicit brewing and smuggling, she said that moreover 13 officials from the Police and Excise & Taxation departments had been suspended for negligence. A magisterial inquiry commission had been set up with the mandate to submit its report within a month. She also made it clear that anybody found involved in this menace would not be spared.

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NO TIME TO SCORE POLITICAL BROWNIE POINTS OVER HOOCH TRAGEDY: ARORA TO AKALIS

STRONG ACTION TAKEN BY CAPTAIN AMARINDER SINGH LED CONGRESS GOVERNMENT

Chandigarh, August 3: Condoling the death of over 100 people in the spurious liquor tragedy in the State in Tarn Taran, Amritsar and Batala in Gurdaspur, Mr. Sunder Sham Arora said that this is not the time to derive mileage and score political brownie points instead the occasion demands that all the political parties come together on a single platform and present a united front.

The Industries & Commerce minister further said that at this calamitous time, the recent statement by the Union Minister Harsimrat Kaur Badal accusing the Congress Government of cover up to save the skin of ruling party legislators, is in very bad taste and smacks of the eagerness of the akalis to settle political scores to regain their lost ground.

Listing out the strong action taken by the State Government led by the Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh, he said that seven excise and six police officials have been suspended in the case.

Armed with facts, the minister said that 88 persons from Ferozepur, Mansa, Muktsar and Patiala districts have been nabbed in a major crackdown against illicit liquor trade. Not only this, 7420 litres ‘Lahan’, other chemicals and 1212 bottles of illicit liquor have been seized by the State Police and furthermore, raids are being conducted at industrial units across the State to tighten the noose around those engaged in spurious liquor trade, said the minister.

“How come the Akalis developed sudden love for the people of Punjab whereas during the tenure of previous SAD-BJP Government, they themselves were involved neck deep in the drug trade and ex minister Bikram Singh Majithia was hand in glove with smugglers who were out to ruin the youth of Punjab. The story of the sins perpetrated by the Akalis doesn’t ends here. The sacrilege cases, the firing at Behbal Kalan and Kotkapura, all are clear cut proof of the treachery committed by the Akalis with the people of Punjab and now the Akalis pointing out fingers at the Congress Government can very well be termed as the case of ‘Pot calling the kettle black’., added the minister.

Advising the Akalis to desist from playing negative politics over the deaths of innocents in the hooch tragedy, the minister asked them to leave political considerations behind for a moment as such antics won’t help them in climbing up the ladder of power.

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ZERO TOLERANCE AGAINST CORRUPTION : ASHU

BATHINDA DISTRICT FOOD AND SUPPLY CONTROLLER SUSPENDED OVER GRAFT CHARGES

MOGA DISTRICT FOOD AND SUPPLY CONTROLLER SUSPENDED DUE TO POOR PERFORMANCE

Chandigarh, August 3-Reiterating the commitment to make Food and Civil Supplies Department corruption free and provide Transparent services to the people of the state, the Minister of the Department Mr. Bharat Bhushan Ashu said that any kind of bribery practice would not be tolerated at any cost.

Mr. Bharat Bhushan Ashu said today that the matter of corruption by the District Food and Civil Supplies Controller Bathinda came to his notice, on which he conducted a preliminary inquiry at his own level and found the allegations against the officer true.

Acting on which he immediately suspended the District Food and Civil Supplies Controller Bathinda and ordered a detailed inquiry into the matter and stern action against all the officers and employees involved, would be taken.

``Apart from this, complaints were also received about the poor performance of District Food and Civil Supplies Controller Moga, on which a preliminary inquiry was conducted and allegations found conclusive resulting to which District Food and Civil Supplies Controller Moga was immediately suspended., he added.

He further said that under the leadership of Chief Minister, Punjab Captain Amarinder Singh Punjab Government is committed to provide corruption free, transparent and efficient government services to the people of the state.

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NO TIME TO SCORE POLITICAL BROWNIE POINTS OVER HOOCH TRAGEDY ASHU TO AKALIS

· STRONG ACTION TAKEN BY CAPTAIN AMARINDER SINGH LED CONGRESS GOVERNMENT

Chandigarh, August 3: Condoling the death of over 100 people in the spurious liquor tragedy in the State in Tarn Taran, Amritsar and Batala in Gurdaspur, the Food and Civil Supplies minister Punjab Mr. Bharat Bhushan Ashu said that this is not the time to derive mileage and score political brownie points instead the occasion demands that all the political parties come together on a single platform and present a united front.

The minister further said that at this calamitous time, the recent statement by the Union Minister Harsimrat Kaur Badal accusing the Congress Government of cover up to save the skin of ruling party legislators, is in very bad taste and smacks of the eagerness of the akalis to settle political scores to regain their lost ground.

Listing out the strong action taken by the State Government led by the Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh, he said that seven excise and six police officials have been suspended in the case.

Armed with facts, the minister said that 88 persons from Ferozepur, Mansa, Muktsar and Patiala districts have been nabbed in a major crackdown against illicit liquor trade. Not only this, thousands litres ‘Lahan’, other chemicals and bottles of illicit liquor in big number have been seized by the State Police and furthermore, raids are being conducted at industrial units across the State to tighten the noose around those engaged in spurious liquor trade, said the minister.

“How come the Akalis developed sudden love for the people of Punjab whereas during the tenure of previous SAD-BJP Government, they themselves were involved neck deep in the drug trade and ex minister Bikram Singh Majithia was hand in glove with smugglers who were out to ruin the youth of Punjab. The story of the sins perpetrated by the Akalis doesn’t ends here. The sacrilege cases, the firing at Behbal Kalan and Kotkapura, all are clear cut proof of the treachery committed by the Akalis with the people of Punjab and now the Akalis pointing out fingers at the Congress Government can very well be termed as the case of ‘Pot calling the kettle black’., added the minister.

Advising the Akalis to desist from playing negative politics over the deaths of innocents in the hooch tragedy, the minister asked them to leave political considerations behind for a moment as such antics won’t help them in climbing up the ladder of power.

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STOP SHEDDING CROCODILE TEARS, YOU SUFFER FROM SELECTIVE AMNESIA: BALBIR SINGH SIDHU TO SUKHBIR BADAL

· STRONG ACTION AGAINST THOSE RESPONSIBLE FOR HOOCH TRAGEDY ‘ON’

Chandigarh, August 3:-The SAD President Sukhbir Singh Badal seems to be suffering from selective amnesia while asking the Chief Minister, Captain Amarinder Singh to step down owning moral responsibility for the spurious liquor tragedy that left over 100 people dead. These views were expressed here today in a press communiqué by the Health & Family Welfare and Labour Minister Mr. Balbir Singh Sidhu.

“Did you step down when the eternal Guru of the Sikhs, Sri Guru Granth Sahib Ji was sacrileged. You didn’t bat even an eyelid while ordering firing on the innocent protestors who in a peaceful manner, were demanding action against those responsible for sacrilege. Did you feel ashamed when you got the Dera Sacha Sauda Chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim forgiven for the heinous crime of donning the uniform like that of Sri Guru Gobind Singh Ji.?” Asked the Minister to Sukhbir.

Castigating the SAD President further, Mr. Sidhu said that the crime story of Sukhbir doesn’t ends here. The ex Deputy CM didn’t threw his brother in law Bikram Singh Majithia out of the cabinet despite being in full knowledge of latter’s dealings with the drug peddlers whereas another akali minister Sarwan Singh Phillaur was given the boot. And the SAD calls itself the ‘Panthic Party’ with Sukhbir and other members of Badal clan lone custodians of Sikh Panth, quipped the Congress leader.

Calling the visit of Sukhbir to Tarntaran District and Muchhal village in Amritsar to meet the families of the victims, a mere eyewash and shedding crocodile tears, the Minister said that did Sukhbir ever cared to visit the families of the two youths who were killed in the police firing. And at that time, Sukhbir was holding the Home portfolio under whose control the State Police functions.

The Cabinet Minister further added that the Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh in keeping with his holy commitment with the people of Punjab, has ordered crackdown on those involved in the spurious liquor trade including the kingpin Balwinder Kaur. The erring officials of the excise and police department have been suspended besides huge quantities of ‘Lahan’ and illicit liquor have also been seized and nobody would be spared the rod as per the promise of the Chief Minister.