21032017-TTC-01.qxd 3/21/2017 1:16 AM Page 1 13 established in 1881 tuesday, march 21, 2017 chandigarh | gurgaon | jalandhar | bathinda | jammu | srinagar | www.tribuneindia.com | vol. 137 no. 78 | 22 pages | ~4.50 | regd. no. chd/0006/2015-2017 /thetribunechd BJP-led govt wins trust vote in Manipur Nation honours its bravehearts President Pranab Mukherjee awards Param Vishisht Seva Medal to Air Marshal Jasbir Walia (left) and Kirti Chakra, the second highest peacetime gallantry award, to Major Rohit Suri (above) during the Defence Investiture Ceremony at Rashtrapati Bhavan on Monday. Major Suri led the Army team that carried out the cross-border surgical strikes last year. DPR DEFENCE Halqa in-charge system goes Capt: Will seek legal opinion on Sidhu’s TV show Shift officers ‘favoured’ by Akali govt, say Punjab Cong leaders Rajmeet Singh Jupinderjit Singh Tribune News Service Tribune News Service Chandigarh, March 20 Chief Minister Capt Amarinder Singh today said he would seek the opinion of Advocate-General, Punjab, on his Cabinet colleague Navjot Singh Sidhu appearing on a TV show. The entertainment industry comes under the Tourism and Culture Ministry. Sidhu is Local Bodies, Tourism and Culture Minister, Punjab. In an interview with a TV channel, Amarinder Singh said he had cordial ties with Sidhu, but his association with the entertainment industry would have to be looked into as Sidhu was a minister now. Sidhu had told the media earlier he would continue to appear in the entertainment show, but would ensure it did not create any hindrance to his work as minister. Chandigarh, March 20 Dismantling the police structure put in place by the SAD-BJP government, the Capt Amarinder Singh-led Congress government in Punjab today ordered the end of the controversial “halqa in-charge system” that had enabled Akali leaders to influence police functioning in their Assembly constituencies. At a meeting with senior officers here, Amarinder said the DCs, SSPs, SDMs and area SHOs would be held accountable for any failure to check drugs, corruption and mafia in their jurisdictions. Making clear that he meant business, Amarinder said he was aware of complaints of corruption against field officers holding various ranks, including that WHAT IT MEANS ■ The fresh orders mean one DSP would now be posted at each of the 83 subdivisions ■ This would bring the DSPs on a par with SDMs, as was the case 10 years ago ■ The SAD-BJP govt had posted up to 3 DSPs per subdivision as sought by halqa chiefs ■ The new CM has ordered a manpower audit to withdraw policemen on VIP security duty ■ Says charge-sheet against corrupt officers to be filed within three days of DSP and SHO. These directions come amid growing disquiet among Congress leaders who want police officials who were favoured by the earlier SAD-BJP dispensation to be shifted. These leaders have reportedly met the CM against the offi- /thetribunechd cers posted in Jalandhar, Ludhiana, Khanna and Patiala. “An IG-rank official, known as ‘Jathedar IG’, continues to hold an important posting,” pointed out one of them. Also, officers who had “manhandled” Congress leaders in Ludhiana during a “Chitta Ravana” protest, have been posted back in the district. Two officers, known to be close to the Akalis, are heading the district police as SSP Sources said the CM . was yet to take a call on the matter, adding that he usually stood by his decisions. Already, the CM has shown faith in the DGP Suresh Aro, ra, who was appointed to the post by the earlier government, disregarding the fact that the husband of one of his party MLAs was a candidate for the post. edit: well begun Imphal, March 20 The BJP-led government today won the floor test in the Manipur Assembly with a voice vote. There was no division of votes in the exercise that saw the lone TMC MLA also supporting the N Biren Singh government. The BJP has 21 MLAs in the 60-member House. It has the support of four MLAs of Naga Peoples’ Front (NPF), four of National Peoples’ Party (NPP), lone MLA of Lokjanshakti Party and Independent MLA Asab Uddin, besides a Congress legislator who was also inducted into the Council of Ministers. Lone Trinamool Congress MLA T Robindro Singh also extended support to the BJPled government although his party’s central leadership alleged that he had “not consulted the party” over it. Earlier in the day, Yumnam Khemchand Singh of the BJP was elected as the new Speaker of the House. He was also elected by a voice vote against Congress candidate Govindas Khonthoujam. Manipur Governor Najma Heptulla on March 15 had appointed N Biren Singh as the first BJP Chief Minister of the state. — PTI CM was a BSF constable p7 Tribune News Service New Delhi, March 20 Even as Indian officials sat down with their Pakistani counterparts to hold a meeting of the Indus Water Commission in Lahore today, two other parallel movements threatened to raise tension again. Sources in the government said as far as the Indus talks were concerned, Pakistan, in private, expressed happiness at the fact that the talks were finally happening. It is also being seen as a positive development in the India-Pak narrative that has seen only tension in the last one year. A 10-member delegation from India arrived in Lahore today to hold talks. The Indian delegation is led by India’s Indus Water Commissioner PK Saxena and comprises Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) officials and technical experts. The Pakistan delegation will be headed by Mirza Asif Saeed. However, two parallel CLERICS BACK HOME ■ Two Sufi clerics who went missing in Pakistan last week returned to India on Monday ■ They said a Pakistan newspaper ran a news that they were working for the Research and Analysis Wing (R&AW) ■ Based on that report, they were detained by Pak agency for questioning. PAGE 10 movements threatened to raise tension again. One: The two Sufi clerics who went missing in Pakistan last week today accused a Pakistani daily for the drama as it ran the news that the two were working for the Research and Analysis Wing (R&AW) and Muttahida Qaumi Movement (MQM). Syed Asif Nizami and Nazim Ali Nizami, the two clerics of the Nizamuddin Dargah, alleged they were detained by Pakistan’s law enforcement agency for questioning based on the untrue report run by a newspaper Ummat. High Court vacancies being filled on war footing: CJI Satya Prakash Tribune News Service New Delhi, March 20 Chief Justice of India JS Khehar today said the Memorandum of Procedure (MoP) for appointment of Judges had been cleared and that vacancies of Judges in High Courts would be filled expeditiously. This comes 15 months after the tussle between the NDA government and the apex court’s collegium over certain issues in the MoP including , rejection of appointments on grounds of national security. Hearing PILs on judicial vacancies and pendency, CJI Khehar said the vacancies were being filled on a war footing. The CJI, heading a threeJudge Bench, said: “Things will come in the open quickly.” The Bench disposed of the PILs, saying a committee consisting of all Chief Justices of High Courts had been constituted to look into judicial vacancies. It referred some of the PILs to the committee. The CJI’s predecessor, Justice TS Thakur, had blasted the government several times over the delay in clearing judi- JS Khehar, Chief Justice of India cial appointments. The Bench noted that the top court had recently passed detailed directions for filling vacancies in subordinate courts. However, it turned down the petitioners’ demand to direct the government to increase the number of posts of High Court Judges, saying the existing vacancies had to be filled first. It said 25 per cent of the Judges’ strength had been increased recently. A few steps had already been taken — Judges had been appointed in the top court as also CJs in High Courts — the CJI said. The government and the judiciary had been at loggerheads over judicial appointments ever since a Constitution Bench in October 2015 declared the NJAC Act, which gave some say to the execu- tive in the Judges’ appointment, as unconstitutional. There was a breakthrough after both sides ceded some ground to the other. While the collegium accepted the government’s demand to include a clause on national security in the MoP the latter , agreed that the former would have the last word. On the issue of an independent secretariat, both sides are said to have budged from their stated stand, and now there will be a secretariat but not exactly in terms of the December 2015 Supreme Court verdict. Meanwhile, the number of vacancies in High Courts has crossed more than 45 per cent. The apex court had revived the collegium system of judicial appointments put in place in 1993. However, it admitted that there were lacunae in the system. Later in December 2015, it delivered another verdict recommending steps to make the collegium system transparent. It said the MoP for appointment of Judges should be redrafted in consultation with the Centre. Rumblings in SAD, AAP Sikhs raise Chattisinghpora Chandigarh: Post Punjab elections, there are rumblings in the SAD and AAP. The SAD core committee meeting on Monday saw almost all leaders blaming the party’s poll debacle on the “inability of the leadership” to assess the ground situation. Akali stalwarts Tota Singh and Sikandar Singh Maluka were most vocal. Meanwhile, the state unit of AAP, at a meeting in Jalandhar, passed a resolution, seeking autonomy. It blamed the Delhi team’s “control” over Punjab affairs as the reason for the party's poor show in the Assembly polls. The resolution was read out by party Chief Whip Sukhpal Khaira. Bhagwant Mann and Sadhu Singh, MPs, were present too. Srinagar: The All Parties Sikh Coordination Committee (APSCC) on Monday urged the Centre and the J&K Government to initiate a fresh probe into the Chattisinghpora massacre. In a statement, APSCC chairman Jagmohan Singh Raina urged the government to go in for a fresh probe into the incident. He regretted that even after 17 years, the people, especially the Sikh community of the Valley, were still waiting for the justice to 35 Sikhs who were massacred on this day in 2000 at Chattisinghpora in south Kashmir. “It is unfortunate that the government is maintaining silence on the issue which was highlighted throughout the world,” Raina added. PAGE 13 Indus talks positive, but fresh tensions arise Simran Sodhi Finally, MoP for Judges’ appointment cleared External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj had to step in and take up the issue with Pakistan Prime Minister’s Adviser on Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz. Secondly: India’s Deputy High Commissioner in Pakistan JP Singh was today summoned in Islamabad over alleged “unprovoked” firing by Indian troops in the Kotli area along the Line of Control (LoC) on March 17. Today’s issue is of 22 pages, including four-page Jalandhar Tribune. Voda-Idea behemoth merger Mumbai: Vodafone India and Idea Cellular on Monday announced the merger of their Indian operations, creating the country’s largest mobile operator by customer and revenue market share. The merged entity, which will come into force over the next two years, will be headed by Kumar Mangalam Birla as Chairman. TNS PAGE 14
The Tribune, now published from Chandigarh, started publication on February 2, 1881, in Lahore (now in Pakistan). It was started by Sardar Dyal Singh Majithia, a public-spirited philanthropist, and is run by a trust comprising four eminent persons as trustees.
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