PUNJAB GOVERNMENT RELEASES RS. 94.35 LAKH TO 185 SCHEDULED CASTE BENEFICIARIES IN MALERKOTLA: DR. BALJIT KAUR

BENEFIT PROVIDED UNDER THE ASHIRWAD SCHEME

PUNJAB GOVERNMENT, LED BY CHIEF MINISTER BHAGWANT SINGH MANN, COMMITTED TO WELFARE OF ALL SECTIONS OF STATE

Chandigarh, June 21:The Punjab Government led by Chief Minister Bhagwant Singh Mann and under the guidelines of Minister of Social Justice, Empowerment and Minorities Dr. Baljit Kaur, has allocated Rs. 94.35 lakh to 185 beneficiaries belonging to the scheduled castes in Malerkotla district. Noteable, Rs 1.71 crore already has been allocated to 337 beneficiaries from backward classes and economically weaker sections.

Providing additional details, Dr. Baljit Kaur emphasized the government's commitment to the welfare of the scheduled caste community in Malerkotla. She added that financial benefits were allocated to 57 beneficiaries in December 2022, 26 in January 2023, 51 in February 2023 and 51 in March 2023, totaling 185 beneficiaries.

Dr. Kaur explained that to qualify for the Ashirwad Scheme, applicants must be permanent residents of Punjab, belong to scheduled castes, backward classes, or economically weaker families, and their annual family income should be less than Rs. 32,790. The scheme provides benefits for up to two daughters per eligible family.

She further highlighted that the Punjab Government is continuously striving for the betterment of Scheduled Castes, Backward Classes and Economically Weaker Sections. Financial assistance is directly deposited into the beneficiaries bank accounts, ensuring swift and transparent transactions. The government's efforts aim to enhance the living standards and economic stability of all sections of society.

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VB UNEARTHS SCAM AMOUNTING TO RS 1.55 CRORE FOR EMBEZZLEMENT IN DISTRIBUTION OF RICE MEANT FOR POOR FAMILIES

Two trucks laden with 1138 bags were confiscated- three accused arrested

Chandigarh June 21: The Punjab Vigilance Bureau (VB) has unearthed a big scam amounting to Rs 1.55 crore by raiding at a warehouse and seized 2 trucks laden with 1138 bags of rice. In this case the VB has arrested Gopal Goyal owner Shiv Shakti Rice Mill, Garshankar, Hoshiarpur district along with two truck drivers Jagpal Singh and Sukhwinder Singh.

While giving information here today, the spokesperson of the VB informed that in this regard a case against the owner of Jai Janeder Firm Contractor Harish Dalal, Owner of Shiv Shakti Rice Mill Garhshankar, Hoshiarpur Gopal Goyal, owner of Anjani Rice Mill Kuttiwal Kalan, Maur mandi, Bathinda, truck drivers Jagpal Singh and Sukhwinder Singh have been registered under prevention of corruption act at VB police station Bathinda range. He added that the role of officials/employees/custodians of Global Warehouse besides concerned officials/employees of Food Corporation of India would be considered during the future investigation.

He informed that under the Bharat Brand Scheme, being run by the Government of India, about 70,000 metric tonnes of rice was being distributed by the National Cooperative Consumer Federation of India in Bathinda, Bhucho, Maur, Rampura Phul and Budhlada to the poor families costing about Rs 130 crore. Out of which, about 1000 metric tons of rice has to be distributed at a cost of Rs. 18.50 per kg, after filling it in bags weighing 5 kg and 10 kg. The tender for supplying this rice to the beneficiaries at a rate of Rs.29 per kg in Bathinda district, was awarded to Jai Janedar firm.

He further revealed that the VB received information from a reliable source that an attempt was being made to embezzle the rice for beneficiaries worth Rs. 3.40 crore. Acting on the information, the VB team has confiscated 2 trucks loaded with 1138 bags of rice which were to be sent to Hamjapur in Fathiabad but the tenderer firm has not cleaned the rice and not filled it in the bags as mandated with a motive to usurp the rice by further selling it directly to the rice sellers.

During the probe it was also found that the above said firm wants to embezzle the government stock meant for the poor people by selling it at an expensive price of Rs 34 per kg.

The spokesperson further informed that the owners of Jai Janedar Firm has procured rice from Global Warehouse (Soma Warehouse), Maur Mandi in conniving with the officers/employees/custodian of this warehouse through a broker named Harish Kumar and unknown officials of Food Corporation of India. After paying the bribe the rice bags were shifted to Anjani Rice Mill, Kuttiwal Kalan, Maur Mandi, and after this the rice bags were to be taken to Shiv Shakti Rice Mill, Garhshankar District, Hoshiarpur through these trucks. In this regard case has been registered against all the above mentioned accused and owners of said firms and further investigations are underway, he said.

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PUNJAB AND HARYANA HIGH COURT CELEBRATES INTERNATIONAL DAY OF YOGA 2024

Chandigarh, June 21-The International Day of Yoga 2024, was celebrated at the premises of Punjab and Haryana High Court, Chandigarh under the aegis of Hon'ble Mr. Justice Gurmeet Singh Sandhawalia, Acting Chief Justice, Punjab and Haryana High Court, Chandigarh. The day was observed as per guidelines received from Ministry of Ayush, Government of India, New Delhi. Hon'ble Judges, Members of Punjab and Haryana High Court Bar Association, officers and officials of the High Court participated in the event, displaying enthusiasm while performing different Yoga Asanas and meditation.

On the occasion, Yoga Instructor of the Government College of Yoga Education & Health, Sector 23-A, Chandigarh apprised the participants of the benefits of Yoga, being an invaluable gift of ancient Indian tradition which helps in physical development, mental relaxation besides development of strength, flexibility and immunity. She emphasized that Yoga was not about physical exercise alone and helped create a sense of oneness with the world and nature.

International Day of Yoga is celebrated on June 21, across India every year with the objective of making it a part of daily routine of every individual and to highlight the importance of Yoga in holistic development.

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OPERATION EAGLE-IV: IN MASSIVE CRACKDOWN AGAINST DRUG SMUGGLERS, PUNJAB POLICE ARRESTS 254 PERSONS; 2.6-KG HEROIN, ₹15.71 LAKH DRUG MONEY RECOVERED

— THREE-PRONGED STRATEGY IN PLACE TO WIPE OUT DRUGS FROM THE STATE AS PER DIRECTIONS OF CM BHAGWANT SINGH MANN

— PROPERTIES OF BIG SMUGGLERS WORTH ₹200-CR FORFEITED SINCE MARCH 2022, 559 MORE PROPOSALS OF ₹246-CR PENDING WITH COMPETENT AUTHORITY: SPL DGP ARPIT SHUKLA

— SPL DGP/ADGP/IGP/DIG RANK OFFICERS PERSONALLY SUPERVISED THIS SPECIAL OPERATION IN EACH POLICE DISTRICT

— OVER 500 POLICE TEAMS CONDUCTED CASO AT 392 IDENTIFIED DRUG HOTSPOTS IN PUNJAB: SPL DGP ARPIT SHUKLA

CHANDIGARH, June 21:Further intensifying the ongoing war against drugs waged on the directions of Chief Minister Bhagwant Singh Mann, Senior Officers from the Punjab Police Headquarters (PPHQ) joined CPs/SSPs to conduct a massive state-level Cordon and Search Operation (CASO) carried out under the name of ‘EAGLE-IV’ at identified drug Hotspots— the points of sale of drugs and psychotropic substances— across the state.

The operation was conducted on the directions of Director General of Police (DGP) Punjab Gaurav Yadav from 8am to 2pm simultaneously in all 28 Police districts of the state and Spl DGP/ADGP/IGP/DIG rank officers from PPHQ were deputed in each Police district to personally supervise the operation.

Special DGP Law and Order Arpit Shukla, who joined Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) Gulneet Singh Khurana in Rupnagar, said that the CPs/SSPs were told to plan this operation in a meticulous manner in their respective districts and conduct raids at such areas, which have become shelter/safe haven for drug peddlers amid massive deployment of the police force.

He said that the state government has enforced a three-pronged strategy— Enforcement, Deaddiction and Prevention (EDP)— to eradicate drugs from the state. Police officers have been asked to trace the forward and backward linkages of all the cases being registered under the NDPS act and take strict action against those found in collusion with the drug smugglers, he added.

The Special DGP said that to break the backbone of the drug smuggling networks running from across the border, strict vigil is being kept on the movement of drones, which have emerged as the new modus operandi to smuggle drugs, weapons and explosives from across the border. There were a total of 906 drone sightings reported in all the border districts of the state since September 2019, of which 187 drones were successfully recovered, he added.

He said that properties of big drug smugglers or big fish— caught with 2kg or above heroin— are also being forfeited. “Punjab Police have forfeited 459 properties worth Rs 200 crores of big smugglers since the CM Bhagwant Singh Mann led Punjab Government came into the power, while, 559 more proposals to freeze properties worth Rs 246 crores are pending with the competent authority,” said Spl DGP Arpit Shukla.

Pertinently, over 500 Police teams, comprising over 4000 police personnel, have cordoned off as many as 392 drug hotspots. As many as 352 Strong Nakas were also laid at and around all the drug hotspots.

During the operation, Spl DGP Arpit Shukla said that the Police teams have registered 221 first information reports (FIRs) after arresting 254 persons. Police teams have also checked 4575 suspicious persons and verified their credentials.

Police teams have recovered 2.6-Kg Heroin, ₹15.71 lakh drug money, 83kg poppy husk, 2.6 kg ganja, 550grams opium, 7553 intoxicant tablets and a huge quantity of illicit and licit liquor and lahan, he added.

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PUNJAB GOVERNMENT OPERATIONALIZED FIVE AUTOMOTIVE AND DRIVING SKILL CENTERS IN THE STATE: LALJIT SINGH BHULLAR

Transport Minister visits Tarn Taran Centre run by Red Cross Society

Chandigarh/Tarn Taran, June 21:The Punjab government has established five Automotive and Driving Skill Centers across the state, providing accessible driving skills training to those in need. These centers are located in Bathinda, Roopnagar, Hoshiarpur, Gurdaspur and Tarn Taran.

Transport Minister S. Laljit Singh Bhullar disclosed this during his visit to the Tarn Taran Automotive and Driving Skill Center, run by the Red Cross Society, on Friday. He inspected the facilities and distributed certificates to trainees. He mentioned that this center offers a two-day training program on road safety rules.

"Previously, individuals had to travel to Mahuana in Sri Muktsar Sahib district for refresher courses for their new or renew driving licenses, causing significant inconvenience. However, with the establishment of this center at the Red Cross office in Tarn Taran, people can now receive their training locally, eliminating the need to travel to Mahuana," he added.

The event was attended by esteemed guests, including Deputy Commissioner Tarn Taran Sandeep Kumar, Executive Secretary Sarabjit Singh Thind, Chairman Dilbagh Singh and District Training Supervisor Surjit Singh, among other dignitaries.

These centers cater to the long-standing demand for quality driving training in the region, reflecting the state government's commitment to providing better facilities to the people of Punjab.

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MANN GOVERNMENT REOPENS STATE'S ONLY SILK SEED GRAINAGE CENTER IN DALHOUSIE, WHICH WAS CLOSED FOR 15 YEARS

Horticulture Minister Chetan Singh Jouramajra visits silk grainage center; Asks official to start operations

High-quality silk seed will be produced and supplied to farmers at low transportation cost

Farmers in the Kandi districts of Gurdaspur, Pathankot, Hoshiarpur and Ropar will benefit

Chandigarh/Dalhousie, June 21:Punjab's only sericulture silk seed grainage center in Dalhousie (Himachal Pradesh), which had been closed for the past 15 years, has been reopened with the concerted efforts of Chief Minister S. Bhagwant Singh Mann led Punjab government.

Horticulture Minister S. Chetan Singh Jouramajra today visited the government sericulture silk seed grainage center, reviewed the site and issued necessary instructions to the officials to start the operations.

The Horticulture Minister stated, "previous dispensations had neglected this valuable asset of the state of Punjab, but Chief Minister S. Bhagwant Singh Mann has decided to reopen this center", mentioning that an initial installment of Rs.14 lakh has been approved for this center, which will enable the preparation of silk seed grains starting in September and to be provided to the farmers at affordable prices.

S. Jouramajra informed that Dalhousie's environment is highly suitable for silk seed production and the reopening of this center will directly benefit about 1500 farmers of Punjab's Kandi area. He added that farmers of the districts of Gurdaspur, Pathankot, Hoshiarpur and Ropar will benefit from this center.

The Cabinet Minister noted that previously, the department provided silk seeds to silkworm rearers from Central Silk Board centers, but with the reopening of this silk seed center in Dalhousie, the Punjab government will be able to produce its own silk seeds, which will further enable to provide the silk seeds to silkworm rearers at reduced transportation costs.

"With the start of the operations of sate's own silk seed grainage center, silk seed production will be increased, which will further boost silk production in the state", said the Cabinet Minister, adding that more farmers, particularly women, can be involved in this sector.

S. Chetan Singh Jouramajra also highlighted that the Sericulture Wing is a crucial part of the Horticulture Department, which not only promotes silk production in the state but also provides employment to poor silkworm rearers in the border areas. The Cabinet Minister said that he has directed the Director Horticulture to provide all necessary technical and financial support to silkworm rearers under various schemes to maximize silk production in the state and improve the social and economic status of poor farmers.

During this visit, the Cabinet Minister was accompanied by Hardeep Singh Deputy Director Horticulture, Jatinder Kumar Horticulture Development Officer, Avtar Singh Manager, Sukhveer Singh Sericulture Promotion Officer and other officials.

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PSDM INKS MoU WITH MICROSOFT TO INCULCATE SKILLS TO 10K YOUTH IN PUNJAB

CM Bhagwant Singh Mann led Punjab Govt committed to facilitate employment opportunities to youth of Punjab, says Aman Arora

Chandigarh, June 21:In a bid to facilitate employment opportunities to the youth of Punjab by enhancing their skills and competence according to the global needs as desired by the Chief Minister S. Bhagwant Singh Mann, Punjab Skill Development Mission (PSDM) has inked an Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Microsoft to ingrain essential skills to at least 10,000 youth of state in a year.

The MoU was signed by Director PSDM Ms. Amrit Singh and Country Head Education, Microsoft Corporation India Pvt. Ltd. Mr Sanjay Dhingra here on Friday.

Congratulating the whole department for achieving another milestone, Punjab Employment Generation, Skill Development and Training Minister Mr. Aman Arora said that this collaboration will pave a way to inculcate skills to 10,000 youth in Punjab with essential digital productivity skills, employability skills, English communication skills, entrepreneurship skills, and technology skills, including cloud, Artificial Intelligence (AI), cyber security and sustainability. The department has not been leaving any stone unturned to facilitate employment opportunities to the youth of Punjab, he reiterated.

Elaborating on the collaboration, Ms. Amrit Singh said that the comprehensive future skills collaboration with Microsoft for 2024-25 includes multiple targeted initiatives designed to address the specific needs of diverse learners catered by PSDM, aiming to enhance their skills and competence according to global needs and provide them with employment opportunities in an AI-enabled economy for better livelihoods.

She also emphasized that the Department of Employment Generation, Skill Development and Training is determined to cater to the manpower requirements of the industry by providing them the skilled youth from Punjab. More MoUs will be signed with other companies in the near future, she added.