05112017-TTC-01.qxd 11/5/2017 1:25 AM Page 1 123 established in 1881 vol. 137 no. 305 late city | sunday, november 5, 2017 chandigarh | gurugram | jalandhar | bathinda | jammu | srinagar | www.tribuneindia.com | 40 pages | ~5.00 | regd. no. chd/0006/2015-2017 /thetribunechd Ordinance paves way for J&K panchayat poll Jammu/Srinagar, November 4 Governor NN Vohra today promulgated the Jammu and Kashmir Panchayati Raj (Amendment) Ordinance, 2017, paving the way for the much-awaited panchayat elections. Panchayats in state completed their five-year term in June 2016. The village elections were last held in 2011 when Omar Abdullah headed an NC-Congress coalition government in the state. When contacted, Chief Electoral Officer Shaleen Kabra said the delimitation process had already been completed. Governor Vohra had been emphasising that the elections be held without further delay and a three-tier framework for Panchayati Raj Institutions put in place to ensure “effective participation” of the people in the decision-making process. The panchayat elections are envisaged to be held this winter. The State Election Commission (SEC) completed the delimitation exercise in March this year, adding 280 panchayats and 4,000 panch segments. Prior to that, there were 4,098 panchayats, including 2,145 in the Kashmir Division (including Ladakh) and 1,953 in Jammu. Meanwhile, Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti wrote on her Twitter account that the Centre must honour Article 370 of the Constitution that grants special status to Jammu and Kashmir, saying it Cong has fled poll battle in Himachal, claims Modi PM compares party with termite, asks people to eliminate it HIMACHAL POLLS Lalit Mohan & Deepender Manta Tribune News Service ‘WHAT OF ART 370’ Article 370 is the nation’s commitment to the people of J&K and, therefore, should be honoured. ❝ Mehbooba Mufti, J&K CM was a commitment to the people of the state. The Chief Minister’s tweet comes in the wake of the debate over revocation of Article 370 and Article 35-A (related to special rights and special provisions) that was recently deferred for hearing by the Supreme Court. In another tweet, the CM said: “Democracy is a battle of ideas and dialogue is the only way forward.” It was an obvious reference to the appointment of Dineshwar Sharma as the Centre’s interlocutor to hold talks with all stakeholders in the state. Separatist leaders have rejected the offer, saying mainstream parties like the PDP have no role in the resolution of the Kashmir issue. — TNS Dharamsala/Mandi, Nov 4 Comparing the Congress with termite, Prime Minister Narendra Modi today gave a call for uprooting the party from Himachal Pradesh “as termites need to be eliminated so that they do not resurface.” He claimed the Congress had conceded defeat in the state, its senior leaders having “run away” from campaigning. Addressing his second election rally in Chambi, Kangra district, he said: “The party’s top leadership has run away from the battle in Himachal, leaving CM Virbhadra Singh to fend for himself.” Unlike his earlier rally, Modi desisted from hurling corruption charges at Virbhadra. Justifying demonetisation, he said only the dishonest were still rattled by the move. “The dishonest are attacking me, but I am not afraid.” Listing his government’s achievements, he said in the last three years 15,000 villages had been provided electricity. Speaking at a rally in Sun- Stampede in Bihar PM Narendra Modi being presented a cap by BJP leader and MP Shanta Kumar at a rally near Dharamsala on Saturday. PTI CENTRE HINTS AT MORE GST SOPS New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Saturday said suggestions made by traders, small businesses and other stakeholders were being accepted to streamline the Goods and Services Tax (GST). He said following a review of GST’s functioning, some measures had been announced while more would be taken up at the forthcoming GST Council meeting on November 9 and 10. TNS Akshardham terror attack mastermind held after 15 yrs Manas Dasgupta Scattered slippers after a stampede near Simariya Ghat in Bihar’s Begusarai district where devotees had gathered to bathe in the Ganga on the sacred occasion of Kartik Purnima on Saturday. Three women were killed in the incident. PTI PAGE 7 Graft-free India by 2022: Niti Aayog New Delhi, November 4 Government think-tank Niti Aayog has envisaged a new India by 2022 that would be free from poverty, dirt, corruption, terrorism, casteism and communalism. According to New India @2022 document presented by Niti Aayog Vice-Chairman Rajiv Kumar at the Conference of Governors last month, India would be in the top three economies of the world if it continues to grow at 8 per /thetribunechd LOOKING AHEAD ■ Niti sees road connectivity in all villages by 2019 ■ 20 world-class higher learning institutions by 2022 cent from now until 2047. It also envisions that India will achieve ‘kuposhan-mukt Bharat’ by 2022. The document visualises that the government will be able to connect all villages with habitations over 500 (250 in special areas) with allweather roads by 2019 under the Pradhan Mantri Gram Sadak Yojana (PMGSY). It says India will have 20 world-class higher education institutions by 2022. The document also envisages that villages selected under the Pradhan Mantri Adarsh Gram Yojana (PMAGY) would attain the “model village” status by 2022. — PTI Ahmedabad, November 4 Abdul Rashid Ajmeri, who the police claim was the mastermind behind the terrorist attack on Akshardham Temple in Gandhinagar and was absconding for 15 years, was arrested at the Ahmedabad airport this morning. Two Pakistan-based Jaishe-Mohammad terrorists had mounted an attack on the temple on September 24, 2002, allegedly to avenge the killing of Muslims in communal riots in the state the same year. Thirty-two persons, including 28 devotees and three commandos of the National Security Guard and a constable of the state reserve police, were killed. At least 100 others were injured in the terror attack. Both terrorists were shot dead by NSG commandos after a 12hour-long gunfight. Acting on a tip-off that Ajmeri had boarded a flight at Riyadh for Ahmedabad to meet family members, the Ahmedabad crime branch stepped up vigil at the airport and nabbed him as soon as he got off the plane. New Zealand beat India by 40 runs, level T20 series Sindhu accuses Indigo staffer of rude behaviour Bank manager arrested in UP for raping Russian Rajkot: New Zealand beat India by 40 runs in the second T20 International on Saturday to level the three-match series 1-1. Batting first, New Zealand scored 196 for 2 riding on Colin Munro’s unbeaten 109 off 58 balls. In reply, only skipper Virat Kohli looked in good touch with 65 off 42 balls as India were restricted to 156 for 7. Former skipper MS Dhoni scored 49. Left-handed Munro used his bat like a sledge-hammer, striking seven sixes and as many fours in his 58-ball knock. None of Indian bowlers, barring Jasprit Bumrah in first spell, could contain the rampaging Munro. PAGE 20 New Delhi: Olympic medallist PV Sindhu has accused an Indigo ground staff of misbehaving with her while she was travelling from Hyderabad to Mumbai. The airline rejected the charge. “Ground staff (skipper) Ajeetesh behaved very rudely with me. When airhostess Ashima tried to advise him to behave properly with a passenger (me), to my surprise, he behaved very rudely with her,” she tweeted. PTI Mathura: The branch manager of a nationalised bank was arrested for allegedly raping a 20-year-old Russian woman repeatedly on her arrival in India in September after the two struck a friendship on Facebook, a senior police officer said. “The manager of UCO Bank’s Vrindaban branch, Mahendra Prasad Singh, has been arrested on a complaint filed by the woman,” the officer said. She said the complaint was filed after she met another Russian woman who counselled her to do so. PTI Today’s issue consists of 40 pages, including eight-page Spectrum, six-page Chandigarh Tribune and four-page Life+Style. dernagar in Mandi later, Modi launched a stinging attack on the Congress over corruption as he dwelled on the coal scam, 2G Spectrum scam and several other scandals during the Congress-led UPA government. He said the people of the country would not forgive the Congress for such wrongdoings. “The Congress plans to mark November 8 as ‘black day’ to mislead the people on demonetisation. But the people are aware of such tactics by the party that spread corruption everywhere.The BJP has brought in a new law to tighten the noose over benami land deals. The Congress leaders are worried that action may be initiated against them for such transactions,” the PM said. He claimed the state had progressed most when Prem Kumar Dhumal was CM. “He will take Himachal to new heights of development.” Seeking votes for Dhumal, a “commoner”, he asked the people to vote out the “royals.” The PM is to address a rally each at Palampur, Kullu and Una tomorrow. Voting in the state is scheduled for November 9. Counting will take place on December 18. related reports on page 5 ‘Raja’ in combat gear, help or no help Pratibha Chauhan Tribune News Service Shimla, November 4 Unfazed by the BJP campaign denigrating him, Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh (83) has been addressing four-five election meetings every day. He has had little help from Congress star campaigners despite a belligerent BJP swamping the state like never before. The six-time Chief Minister, a one-man army, covers at least four segments daily, occasionally by chopper and mostly by road. Arriving at his residence “Holly Lodge” past midnight, he is up at 6 am and leaves for electioneering at 8 am. “I have not had the time to campaign in my constituency Arki or in Shimla (Rural) where my son is in the fray,” he says as he enters the dining room. A quick breakfast and he is ready to leave for Jalog and Sunni in Shimla (Rural) — the constituency he won in 2012 and which is now being contested by his son. “I am not seeking votes for Vikramaditya because he is my son, but because he understands your problems well and will be a family member to you in good and bad times,” he tells an election rally in Sunni. The response is positive. He then flies to Anni in Kullu. As he wraps up a rally in Nankhari in Rampur, it is 10 am. “It makes no difference UNFAZED BY CRITICISM They (BJP) are bound to attack me. I am the biggest impediment in their victory march. ❝ Virbhadra Singh, HP CM what the BJP says about me. The affection showered on me by the people of Himachal keeps me going,” he says, unperturbed by the PM’s comment at a rally that deserted by his party, he had been left to fend for himself. In his eighties and suffering multiple health problems, the indefatigable Virbhadra is determined to fight till the last. He brushes off BJP’s attacks, saying: “I am the biggest impediment in BJP’s victory march.” Amrinder Singh Raja Warring, All-India Youth Congress president, who is accompanying him, hastens to add: “The CBI raided his house on his daughter’s wedding. This is how much the BJP fears him.”
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