31012018-TTC-01.qxd 1/31/2018 1:39 AM Page 1 13 established in 1881 wednesday, january 31, 2018 late city chandigarh | gurugram | jalandhar | bathinda | jammu | srinagar | www.tribuneindia.com | vol. 2 no. 30 | 26 pages | ~4.50 | regd. no. chd/0006/2018-2020 /thetribunechd Govt’s U-turn on Bhansali: Was orange passport all so illogical New Delhi, January 30 The External Affairs Ministry tonight announced that it has reversed its decision on the issuance of an orangecoloured passport to those who have ECR status, as also on printing of the last page with personal details. The decision was taken at a meeting, chaired by External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and attended by one of her two deputies VK Singh, among others, yesterday. Based on the recommendations of a three-member committee comprising officials of MEA and the Women and Child Development Ministry, it was decided not to print the last page of the passport booklet, the MEA said in a release. The Ministry had earlier decided to issue a passport with orange jacket to passport holders with Emigration Check Required (ECR) status, with a view to help and assist them on a priority basis. “However, the MEA has received several representations requesting to reconsider these two decisions,” it said. After discussions with stakeholders, “the MEA has decided to continue with the practice of printing of the last page of the passport and not to issue a separate passport with orange colour jacket to ECR passport holders”, the release said. The MEA decision had been criticised by political parties. — PTI /thetribunechd 2018-19 winter may be driest Shub Man Vibha Sharma Mumbai, January 30 Director Sanjay Leela Bhansali believes the phenomenal audience response to “Padmaavat” is his answer to those who have been protesting against the film. Finally opening up, the director said he was deeply troubled but instead of reacting, which he realised would not make a difference, he focused on making the best possible film that he could. “Padmaavat”, which released last week after facing nationwide protests by Rajput groups led by the Karni Sena, has already become a blockbuster. “The protests were illogical, they had no reasoning and there was nothing to be discussed. It had reached an obnoxious level with people sitting with swords on national television and giving death threats.” — PTI Tribune News Service ‘WHAT WAS THE NOISE ALL ABOUT?’ Rajputs have the ❝ Lots ofand are sayingseenis our film this glory, this is celebrating us, our forefathers, there was nothing wrong in the film, and what was the noise all about? Sanjay Leela Bhansali, DIRECTOR As India walloped Pakistan by 203 runs to enter their sixth ICC Under-19 cricket World Cup final in New Zealand’s Christchurch on Tuesday, the Man of the Match was Shubman Gill, who was recently picked by IPL franchise Kolkata Knight Riders for ~1.8 crore. Based in Mohali but from a village in Fazilka, the 18-year-old Shubman hit an unbeaten 102* as India set Pakistan a target of 273. Seamer Ishan Porel (4/17) then ran through the Pakistan top order as the team was bowled out for a mere 69. Coach Rahul Dravid’s boys will now take on Australia in the summit clash on February 3 in what will be a repeat of the 2012 edition which India won. India have also won the tournament in 2000 and 2008, but lost in the final in 2006 and 2016. AFP REPORT PAGE 16 New Delhi, January 30 It is not just January, if western disturbances (WDs) persist with their current pattern, the 2018-19 winter could go down among the driest seasons ever. Till January 24, the country recorded around 2.2 mm rain and the northwest 3.1 mm. It means a deficiency of 84 per cent and 88 per cent, respectively. Central India was the worst off with no rain. As the water level in 91 major reservoirs has dipped by 2 per cent in a week, meteorologists expect the two back-to-back WDs to bring down the deficiency and also the temperature. A fresh WD is expected after one or two days, resulting in rain at isolated places in Jammu and Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand around February 3 or 4. Mahesh Palawat of private weather forecaster Skymet adds that these two back-to-back “moderate” WDs will also result in snowfall in the upper reaches. The dry spell and rising temperature may adversely impact the rabi crop. Though some weather models are showing scattered rain between February 8 and 13, it is too early to firmly commit. What has happened this season is that WDs have remained restricted to upper latitudes, resulting in Punjab, Rajasthan and Delhi going almost dry. Govt plans to abolish posts be operational Shatrughan joins disgruntled BJP colleague, says not anti-party activity vacant for 5 yrs DGMO-level hotline toout andmadeoper- There havesoon Ajay Banerjee sorted it will be been India, China to resume exercises Yashwant floats anti-govt manch Mukesh Ranjan Tribune News Service New Delhi, January 30 Senior BJP leader and former Union Minister Yashwant Sinha, a strong critic of the Modi government, today launched “Rashtra Manch” (National Forum), which he claimed would be a “political action group” without being a “political party” of all those who are concerned over the deteriorating democratic values and institutions in the country. Launching the forum, Sinha said the manch would start a movement against the policies of the Central Government, which have been “denigrating democratic institutions, including Parliament and judiciary”. Disgruntled BJP MP Shatrughan Sinha, Trinamool Congress MP Dinesh Trivedi, Congress MP Renuka Chowdhury, NCP MP Majeed Memon, Aam Aadmi Party MP Sanjay Singh, former Gujarat chief minister Suresh Mehta and JD-U leader Pavan Varma were among those who ❝ ❝ It is not an organisation but a national movement… Everybody in the BJP is living in fear. I along with Shatrughanjihave overcome that and so are in front of you today I have joined the platform because I have not been given a forum in the party to express my views. My decision should not be seen as an anti-party activity as it is in national interest Yashwant Sinha, FORMER UNION MINISTER Shatrughan Sinha, BJP MP attended the event. RLD leader Jayant Chaudhary and former Union ministers Som Pal and Harmohan Dhawan were also present. Shatrughan Sinha said he had joined the platform because he had not been giv- en a forum in his party for expressing his views, but added that his decision to back the front should not be seen as an anti-party activity as it was in national interest. Yashwant Sinha likened the present situation to that which prevailed 70 years ago when Mahatma Gandhi was assassinated, on this day, and said democracy and its institutions were under attack. He claimed the Narendra Modi government had reduced farmers to “the status of beggars” and accused it of presenting “made-to-order” statistics to suit its interests. Claiming that the forum is “not an organisation but a national movement”, Sinha hit out at the government for its economic and foreign policies. “Everybody in the BJP is living in fear. I along with Shatrughanji have overcome that and so are in front of you today,” he said. Dialogue and debate in the country had become “coarse, one-sided and dangerous”, he said, adding: “It seems mob has the job of giving justice.” The first leg of the Budget session would effectively have only four working days, something that was unprecedented, Sinha said, adding issues raised by four senior judges of the Supreme Court are a matter of great concern. New Delhi, January 30 The government is planning to abolish all posts that have been vacant for more than five years. In an office memorandum, the Finance Ministry said it had asked all ministries and departments to submit an action-taken report regarding abolition of posts vacant for more than five years. Some departments and ministries have responded but some, instead of providing a comprehensive report, have submitted information in piecemeal manner, it said. Therefore, financial advisers and joint secretaries (administration) of all ministries/departments are requested to identify the posts lying vacant for over five years and submit a comprehensive report, the office memorandum said. According to a preliminary estimate, several thousand Central Government posts have been lying vacant for five or more years. — PTI Jaito tense, DSP’s ‘Conflict of interest’:Capt gunman dies too buys land, curbs set to go jabi University Regional Centre and Jaito SHO Gurmeet Faridkot, January 30 Singh, who had allegedly A day after Deputy Superin- thrashed three students on tendent of Police Baljinder January 12. The university Singh Sandhu died of a bul- centre remained shut today. let injury at Jaito, his gunButa Singh Burjgill, state man, battling for life at Guru president, BKU (Dakonda), Gobind Singh Medical Col- claimed four students, two of lege and Hospital, Faridkot, them girls, had been rounded was declared dead up. He said the this evening. Lal police had raided Singh was standthe house of a BKU ing next to the activist whose son DSP when a bullet Bikram Singh was pierced through present at the time the DSP’s head of the unrest. The and then hit him. police alleged With the police Bikram was branLal Singh carrying out raids dishing a revolver. on the houses of Burjgill said students and members of a Bikram had an arms licence. farmers’ union, there was Blaming SHO Gurmeet palpable tension in Jaito and Singh for the death of the surrounding villages today. DSP who, he said, was a gen, The police had yesterday tle person, he claimed the latfiled a case of abetment to ter wanted the SHO to apolosuicide against unidentified gise. “The SHO agreed to do students and farmers after so and then did not show up DSP Sandhu died while try- at the DSP’s office, thus ing to quell a confrontation humiliating him.” The SHO between students at the Pun- rubbished the allegation. Balwant Garg Tribune News Service Leader of Oppn demands inquiry over PLPA changes Ruchika M Khanna & Rajmeet Singh Tribune News Service Chandigarh, January 30 In an apparent case of conflict of interest, Punjab Chief Minister Capt Amarinder Singh has bought land in Siswan village in the ecologically fragile Shivalik foothills, days before his government was to allow a notification restricting construction in that area to lapse. Once the notification lapses on February 2, he will be free to develop the land on the periphery of Chandigarh and its price is expected to witness a steep rise. The Punjab Government was expected to re-issue the notification under the Punjab Land Preservation Act (PLPA), 1900, before February 2. This would have ensured that the nature of land is not changed as the law is aimed at preventing soil erosion and CHIEF CONSERVATOR OF FORESTS SHUNTED OUT Chief Conservator of Forests (Hills) Harsh Kumar was on Tuesday transferred out after The Tribune highlighted how he was issuing letters to developers asking them to wait for land development till the notification period expired. The orders for his immediate transfer “on administrative grounds” were issued on the directions of Chief Minister Capt Amarinder Singh. Harsh Kumar, however, claimed he was being victimised for raising cases of blatant corruption in the Forest Department. conserving sub-soil water. Other than Capt Amarinder, the other major beneficiary of the intended move to let the notification cease will be Akali Dal president Sukhbir Singh Badal. A part of the land (over 3 acres) on which his luxury resort, Oberoi Sukhvilas, stands, is also locked under the Punjab Land Preservation Act. Another developer of a golf course resort in these lower foothills will also benefit, as will several land sharks operating in the area. Of the 28 bighas and 5 Today’s issue is of 26 pages, including four-page Jobs and Careers and four-page Bathinda Tribune. biswas bought by Capt Amarinder (chahi or irrigated land) recently, 3 bighas and 19 biswas come under PLPA. This means that he cannot undertake any land breaking or construction on this land, locked under PLPA. If the notification is not issued, his land becomes free of the restrictions. Several other Congress leaders, bureaucrats and cops, too, have allegedly bought land here and will benefit from the largesse to be bestowed by “overlooking the re-issue of notification”. continued on page 7 Tribune News Service New Delhi, January 30 In an attempt to put behind tension at the boundary, the armies of India and China will resume more military engagements, including the annual military exercise. Top officials in the Ministry of Defence and also the forces met their Chinese counterparts in November at a scheduled meeting. They also formally agreed to have a hotline at the level of the Director General of Military Operations (DGMO). “Some technical issues need to be ational soon,” a senior functionary confirmed. In 2018, the two sides are set to revive the exercise that had been put on hold following the 73-day military standoff at Doklam. It is expected that China will send the invite to India to conduct the Hand-inHand exercise. It was to be hosted in 2017 and China was to be the host as per the arrangement to conduct it in each country by rotation. The exercise was planned in October-November, but China backed out in May. In 2016, India had hosted the exercise. six editions of the exercise. In the past, however, Hand-inHand was suspended for five years (2010-2014) after China refused to give visa to then Northern Army Commander Lt Gen BS Jaswal saying Jammu and Kashmir was a disputed territory. In October 2016, the two armies conducted their firstever joint exercise in eastern Ladakh in Jammu and Kashmir. The India-China joint statement at Beijing in 2015 had committed to enhancing border defence cooperation.
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.
The Tribune, the largest selling daily in North India, publishes news and views without any bias or prejudice of any kind. Restraint and moderation, rather than agitational language and partisanship, are the hallmarks of the paper. It is an independent newspaper in the real sense of the term.
The English edition apart, the 133-year-old Tribune has two sister publications, Punjabi Tribune (in Punjabi) and Dainik Tribune (in Hindi).