11032017-btd-01.qxd 3/10/2017 10:50 PM Page 1 c m y b SATURDAY | 11 MARCH 2017 | bathinda BATHINDATRIBUNE COLLISION: TWO POLICEWOMEN CENTRE NON-FUNCTIONAL ÞPAGE 2 PAGE 3 Þ PARTLY CLOUDY 22° 08° STAFF SHORTAGE: DRUG PHARMACY HURT IN ROAD MISHAP DIFFERENT SHADES There is an interesting line-up for Holi on television. ÞPAGE 2 MAXIMUM MINIMUM Heartbeats to rise and fall as EVMs open today Exit polls by various media organisations have further fuelled the anxiety over election results CANDIDATESPEAK Nikhila Pant Dhawan Tribune News Service Bathinda, March 10 The heartbeat of candidates is likely to go faster as the EVM machines open at 8 am tomorrow at the three designated centres for counting. Ever since the exit polls by various media organisations have come out, the anxiety pertaining to the results has been fuelled even further. “This time, it is a fierce battle between the Shiromani Akali Dal and the Congress. While one party is counting upon the antiincumbency factor, the other is trying its luck for the third consecutive time. The fight has been made interesting by the entry of the Aam Aadmi Party. While AAP candidates made a place for themselves in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections, the party’s real popularity will be judged by the Assembly elections,” said Pawan Kumar, a resident of Namdev Marg. Sitting SAD MLA Sarup Chand Singla, who recently returned from a trip from abroad, sounded confident of his party’s victory. “Exit polls have been proven wrong time and again. The real results come out on the day of ❝ Exit polls have been proven wrong time and again. The real results come out on the day of counting. The party will reform the government in the state with a resounding victory. The voters know the developmental works that the SAD-BJP government undertook in the state.❞ — SARUP CHAND SINGLA, SAD MLA FROM BATHINDA (URBAN) ❝ Voters have seen through the lies and false promises of the SAD-BJP alliance. The Congress party cadre is upbeat and we are confident of a clear majority. As far as the exit polls are concerned, while one can’t completely dump them, one also can’t completely rely on them. National parties have some kind of established vote bank, which new parties fail to make inroads into.❞ — MANPREET SINGH BADAL, CONGRESS CANDIDATE FROM BATHINDA (URBAN) ❝ We are in a joyous mode. The party workers are eagerly waiting for the results, which will show how the people want to bring AAP to power for a corruption-free government.❞ — DEEPAK BANSAL, AAP CANDIDATE FROM BATHINDA (URBAN) Residents glued to a television set to watch exit polls at a dhaba in Bathinda on Friday. TRIBUNE PHOTO: PAWAN SHARMA counting. The party will reform the government in the state with a resounding victory. The voters know the developmental works that the SAD-BJP government undertook in the state,” he said. Congress candidate Manpreet Singh Badal also sounded confident of his victory. “Voters have seen through the lies and false promises of the SAD-BJP alliance. The Congress party cadre is upbeat and we are confi- dent of a clear majority. As far as the exit polls are concerned, while one can’t completely dump them, one also can’t completely rely on them. National parties have some kind of established vote bank, which new parties fail to make inroads into,” he said. Celebrating the exit polls, some of which have been predicting a victory for AAP in the state, AAP candidate from Bathinda (Urban) Deepak Bansal said, “We are in joyous mode. The party workers are eagerly waiting for the results, which will show how the people want to bring AAP to power for a corruption-free government.” Meanwhile, the voters are also waiting for the policies and promises that the new government will form and keep. “Residents of Bathinda now want change and permanent solution to some perennial problems. All these years, the government has not been able to solve the problem of waterlogging in the city during monsoon. Proper sewerage and stray cattle menace are also huge problems now. The residents want the winning candidates to keep the promises that they made while canvassing,” said Narinder Bhatia, a cloth trader. Meanwhile, women voters are hoping that the candidates will keep the promise of maintaining the law and order situation in the district. “Leave alone venturing out in the night, women are unsafe during the day. Cases of crime against women and snatchings have increased over the past year. We hope that the law and order situation will improve under the new government, irrespective of which party forms it,” said Deepali D’Souza, a resident of Vishal Nagar. “Candidates have promised that their parties, if voted to power, will open up avenues of employment for the youth and will also curb drug abuse. Tomorrow, it will be clear which party is voted to power but it would be a while to see whether the new government keeps its promises,” said Mandeep Singh, a resident of model Town. Health teams assigned duty at counting centres Tribune News Service Bathinda, March 10 Ahead of the day of counting of votes for the Assembly elections, medical teams have been formed for deputation at different counting centres in Bathinda and Mansa. Similarly, three centres have been established in Bathinda, including one at Institute of Hotel Manage- ment, another at PESCO and third at Central University Punjab. Dr Randhawa said, “For each counting centre, we have deputed a team of doctors and paramedical staff. Three ambulances will also remain present outside each counting centres. We are prepared to deal with any untoward situation or emergency. Continued on page 2 It’s justice that Maur residents Admn ensures arrangements in place for D-Day wait for, not election results Tribune News Service Nikhila Pant Dhawan Tribune News Service Bathinda, March 10 The entire state may be eagerly awaiting results of the Assembly elections, which will be announced tomorrow, but residents of the Maur constituency are awaiting justice. Least concerned about which candidate wins from the constituency, which was rocked by two bomb blasts after a Congress rally on January 31 in which six persons lost their lives, all that the constituency wants is that the culprit be brought to book. “Before the blasts, the constituency was buzzing with activity as the sitting MLA and PWD Minister Janmeja Singh Sekhon was pitted against Congress’ Harmander Singh Jassi and Aam Aadmi Party’s Jagdev Singh Kamalu,” said Ram Singh, a resident of Maur, adding that the name of the Least concerned about which candidate wins from the constituency, which was rocked by two bomb blasts after a Congress rally on January 31 in which six persons lost their lives, all that the constituency wants is that the culprit be brought to book Congress candidate had created a lot of controversy. The blasts on the fateful night changed it all. Six persons, including three children of the same street who had just stepped out to play, lost their lives in the blast, changing the fabric of the constituency irretrievably. After the blasts, public outrage rose above the political din and instead of rallies, the constituen- cy observed shut-downs, protests and road blockades. Rakesh Singla, father of deceased Saurav Singla, said, “Residents of threefour adjoining streets didn’t step out to vote, nor are we interested in knowing who wins. We just want to know what the police are doing in the case. No matter which party forms the government, we want the culprits to be punished.” Zora Singh and Malkiat Singh, residents of the adjoining street, said, “Till now, the district administration had been giving the excuse that due to the election code of conduct, increased compensation could not be released. What the residents of Maur are now waiting is to see the addition to the compensation, if any, that the new government will announce.” Bathinda, March 10 As many as 417 persons, including 139 counting supervisors and an equal number of counting assistants and micro observers, have been deputed for counting duty, said Deputy Commissioner-cum-District Election Officer Ghanshyam Thori here today. The election observers today visited the counting centres wherein counting for the Vidhan Sabha elections is to be conducted tomorrow. Observers deputed by the ECI, including P Sainthal for Rampura Phul, Divakar Nath Misra for Bathinda (Urban), Anil Kumar for Talwandi Sabo, Vinay Nigam for Bathinda (Rural), Sanjay Kumar Jain for Bhucho Mandi and Roohi Khan for Maur Mandi, visited their respective counting centres. Thori said security arrangements in and around the counting cen- The District Election Officer with other officials reviews the final arrangements at a counting centre in Bathinda on Friday. TRIBUNE PHOTO: PAWAN SHARMA tres were completed so that the entire process was conducted peacefully. He added that the counting staff would reach the counting centres at 7 am and the counting would begin at 8 am. The counting of postal ballots would begin at 8 am while that of the EM machines is likely to begin from 8:30 am, Thori added. After every round, the observer can select any two machines randomly for rechecking. He said the counting of 90Rampura and 92-Bathinda (Urban) would be done at Institute of Hotel Management (IHM), of 91-Bhucho Mandi (SC) and 93-Bathinda (Rural) (SC) at PESCO on the Mansa road and of 94- Talwandi Sabo and 95-Maur on Central University of Punjab campus. He directed the Returning Officers to ensure that all arrangements were in place. Meanwhile, the final training of the election staff was conducted today. The training of Rampura Phul constituency was conducted at Government Polytechnic College, Bibiwala road, of Bhucho Mandi constituency at DC meeting hall in the District Administrative Complex (DAC), of Bathinda (Urban) at SDM Office in DAC, of Bathinda (Rural) at meeting hall of the Municipal Corporation Bathinda, of Talwandi Sabo at Zila Parishad Complex and of Maur at the conference hall of the DAC. He directed all employees to adhere to the ECI rules. The third and final randomisation will be conducted the next morning at respective counting centres, Thori added. Four-laning project underway with little safety measures Two arrested for damaging SUV, attacking driver Nikhila Pant Dhawan Tribune News Service Bathinda, March 10 A web of open trenches on both sides of the BathindaBarnala road has begun posing threat to the lives of commuters. To make matters worse, many of these trenches have protruding iron rods which may cause severe damage to vehicles and injuries to travellers. The Bathinda-Barnala by-pass road is currently being dug up, re-carpeted and undergoing construction as part of the four-laning project. In the absence of any kind of markers, indicators, reflectors or barricading of these trenches, there is a huge risk of vehicles swerving towards them, especially during the night since Iron rods protrude from pits dug on either side of the Bathinda-Barnala road. TRIBUNE PHOTO: PAWAN SHARMA there are no lights installed on these roads. Over the past two weeks, there have been two-three instances when the drivers couldn’t judge the width of the road during the night and inadvertently maneuvered the vehicles too close to the trenches, slid headlong into them. Although the problem decreases considerably during the day, dust kicked off by the vehicles also makes the view hazy. “Due to the four-laning project, the width of both sides of the road has narrowed down. Often when another vehicle tries to overtake, there is not enough space left for both vehicles and that is when the chances of the vehicle falling into a pit increases,” said Dr Nitin Goel, a c m y b city resident. Absence of lights on the roads is also a big problem for the drivers. “At several parts of the stretch, traffic moves on only one side of the road. In the absence of any streetlight, there’s a greater threat since the high-beam light of vehicles coming from the opposite direction almost blinds the drivers. At such parts of the road, where trenches are open or have iron rods, there should be more street lights so that the drivers may see clearly,” said Ricky Bhateja, who often travels to Chandigarh by this road. On Thursday, a tractor driver lost balance and was injured when his vehicle slid into the trench. Continued on page 2 Gurdeep Singh Mann Tribune News Service Bathinda, March 10 The police have booked 14 persons and arrested two of them for damaging a Toyota Fortuner, beating up its driver and overturning the vehivle. The SUV’s driver had allegedly dragged a woman from Bhai Ghanaiya Chowk to Rose Garden Chowk after an accident. Complainant-cum-investigating officer in the case, Gurmel Singh at the Thermal police station said the accident involving a motorcycle and the SUV occurred on February 2. Ramandeep Kaur and her child were riding pillion on a bike driven by The Toyota Fortuner SUV damaged by the irate public in Bathinda. A FILE PHOTOGRAPH Baljeet Singh. While Baljeet and the child fell away from the vehicle, the woman got entangled into the front bumper of the SUV. The SUV driver, Sandeep Singh, a resident of Mehal Khurd village near Continued on page 2
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