24HR01A.qxd 9/23/2013 6:16 PM Page 1 Page-1 c m y b Hisar 37 Bt COTTON LOSES STEAM 26 Agricultural expets see better future for American, desi varieties 3 CENTENARY YEAR OF CH. DEVI LAL 4 ‘HRdiya’, society for promotion of human resources, launched The Tribune VOICE OF THE PEOPLE Haryana Plus Chandigarh Tuesday, September 24, 2013 Wannabe BJP CMs pop up after Modi’s rally www.tribuneindia.com A reflection on life Pushing allies to corner may cost party dear SUNIT DHAWAN/TNS GURGAON, SEPTEMBER 23 Race for the elusive chair of Chief Minister seems to have picked up momentum in the Haryana BJP following the successful rally of party’s prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi at Rewari recently. Smelling the possibility of the formation of a nonCongress government in the state and buoyed by the rally’s success, the Haryana BJP leaders who had been lying dormant have suddenly sprung up and started staking their claim to the CM’s chair in the event of the party coming to power. Soon after the rally, a group apparently supporting Capt Abhimanyu posted some content on a popular social networking site, suggesting that Narendra Modi he would be the Chief Minister if a BJP-led government was formed in Haryana. It led to a war of words, with the Haryana BJP president Ram Bilas Sharma’s camp claiming that Sharma had already been declared the chief ministerial candidate by senior party leader Sushma Swaraj. Sharma, on his part, fuelled the controversy by reportedly stating that people who had money could do anything, apparently referring to Capt Abhimanyu. The entire episode pushed the existing as well as probable alliance partners of the BJP, who were nurturing dreams of occupying the coveted chair, to a corner. Curiously, Modi also did not seem to accord due regard to the party’s allies in the state. Kuldeep Bishnoi, leader of the BJP's alliance partner, Haryana Janhit Congress, did not get a chance to address the gathering at Modi’s rally. In his 65-minute speech, Modi did not utter a word about the party’s alliance in Haryana, nor did he acknowledge the presence of Bishnoi on the dais. Rather adding insult to injury, he fondly recalled his association with late Haryana leaders Ch Devi Lal and Ch Bansi Lal. Political pundits say this high-headed approach may cost the state BJP dear in the coming elections, considering the fact that the party does not have a worthwhile mass support base in Haryana, and does require the backing of a regional party aligned to the grassroots. On the other hand, INLD leader Abhey Chautala instantly offered “unconditional” support to the BJP leadership soon after the rally, though he later clarified that he had extended support to Modi and not to the party. On the whole, the possibility of the saffron party leadership reconsidering its decision of partnering with the Haryana Janhit Congress before or after the Lok Sabha elections cannot be ruled out. Blossoming lotuses in a pond at Uchana village in Karnal. Tribune photo: Ravi Kumar DRIVE TO MAKE TOWN FREE FROM STRAY CATTLE HONOUR KILLINGS Women leaders endorse khap’s 250 stray bulls caught Amendments to Hindu decision to ban wearing of in Fatehabad laws must: Khaps jeans by girl students SUSHIL MANAV TRIBUNE NEWS SERVICE RAVINDER SAINI JHAJJAR, SEPTEMBER 23 SDM Baljit Singh (centre) in a bull shelter where stray bulls are kept to make Fatehabad free from stray animals. A Tribune photograph SUSHIL MANAV TRIBUNE NEWS SERVICE FATEHABAD, SEPTEMBER 23 A drive to make Fatehabad town free from stray cattle, particularly bulls, who roam on roads and streets posing a grave traffic hazard, has started showing positive response. Under the drive being carried on jointly by the Municipal Council and the Animal Husbandry and Dairy Department, as many as 250 stray bulls have so far been caught and sent to bull shelter set up in Fatehabad. Fatehabad Deputy Commissioner Saket Kumar had ordered the launching of a special drive to catch stray bulls in view of the hazards associated with them. At a meeting held in the mini-secretariat here recently, the Deputy Commissioner had directed officials of the two departments to take immediate steps to make Fatehabad free from stray cattle. In the recent past, several accidents involving stray bulls have been witnessed on roads in which people have sustained injuries. Saket Kumar had nominated SDM Baljit Singh as nodal officer for the drive. Speaking to The Tribune, Baljit Singh said a shelter for stray bulls had been set up on Hisar road where arrangements had been made for shelter as well as fodder for these animals. He said the district authorities had appealed to panchayats of several villages for making contribution by way of fodder for the animals. He said that Fatehabad town would be soon made free from stray animals. Virtually endorsing the verdict of Birohar 12 khap panchayat banning wearing of jeans by school/collegegoing girls, women leaders of various social and political outfits have opined that girl students must follow the dress code of their educational institutes instead of wearing jeans and t-shirt in school/college time. However, they said change in frame of mind was required to prevent crime against women to a large extent. The Birohar khap of 12 villages in Jhajjar district had, on Sunday, proscribed wearing of jeans by girl students stating that the objectionable dress was the root cause of rising incidents of eve-teasing and molestation in the region. The khap panchayat was of the view that attires like jeans/pants by the girls provoke the boys to eve-tease and encouraging young couples to elope hence ban on wearing such attire is needed to prevent the incidents of eve-teasing and other crime against women. Describing the ‘dress code’ for girl students as ‘appropriate’, Kusum Sharma, chief of the women wing of Haryana Janhit Congress (HJC), said besides extending subjective knowledge, educational institutes should also inculcate moral values among their students and it could be acquired by maintaining discipline. Since dress code was also a part of the educational system hence both girls and boys must follow this without any objection, she added. “Merely banning wearing of jeans by girl students is not an effective solution towards checking eve-teasing, molestation and rape like crimes against women; we shall have to bring change in our mentality to prevent such incidents entirely. Khap panchayats, social and political outfits should make the people aware in this direction to achieve the aim,” said Sharma. Sudesh Kumari, a social activist and office-bearer of a women outfit, said the khap panchayat had taken the right decision to ban the girl students from wearing jeans as this sort of attire spoilt the atmosphere and decorum of the educational institutes. “Since the educational institutes are not a picnic spot hence wearing jeans and t-shirt by the girl students cannot be termed as ‘appropriate’ in any manner because girls go to schools/ colleges to study and gain knowledge hence they should respect the dress code imposed by the institutes but we can not consider this cause fully accountable for a rising trend of eve-teasing, molestation and rapes in the region,” she said, adding that there were also some other reasons responsible for the crime. Urmil Bhardwaj, another women leader, said she respected the decision of the khap panchayat but did not fully agree with the plea that wearing jeans and t-shirt was the root cause for eve-teasing, molestation and rapelike crimes. “How can you hold attires of girls responsible for crime against women when girl children are persistently being raped in the region? Jeans is not the root cause of this problem, the problem is in our mindset which should be changed to prevent crime against women,” said Urmil. State aspirants slug it out for MCI slot Candidates apprehensive of postal ballot regime, demand transparent voting procedure SUNIT DHAWAN/TNS GURGAON, SEPTEMBER 23 Candidates for the post of Medical Council of India (MCI) representative from the Haryana Medical Council are sweating it out to ensure their election to the coveted position in the country's top medical body. After the scrutiny and withdrawal of nominations, three main candidates are left in the fray for the MCI membership. These include Dr Rakesh Kumar Gupta, Senior Professor and Unit Head at the Department of Orthopaedics at PGIMS, Rohtak, leading Gurgaon surgeon Dr SP Yadav and Haryana IMP president Dr Rajan Sharma from Yamunanagar. Hectic lobbying as well as an intense state-wide canvassing campaign are on and the electoral process has already started. The Directorate of Medical Education and Research, Haryana, has started dispatching ballot papers to the state medical council members. However, this postal ballot regime has come under sharp criticism from the aspirants, some of whom have registered their protest with the returning authority. Talking to The Tribune, the doctors maintain that the mechanism of voting through postal ballot was susceptible to wrongdoing and there had been cases of mass bogus voting because of the inept regime in the past as well. They allege that the postal ballots could be hijacked by some unscrupulous elements who could strike a bargain with certain candidates by providing them a bulk of ballot papers in return for some monetary or other favour(s). The candidates have demanded that instead of the postal ballot system, a fair and transparent voting procedure like establishment of polling centres at district headquarters should be adopted to ensure that the sanctity of the electoral process remains intact. Moreover, several mem- c m y b bers of the state medical council had shifted their base elsewhere, due to which a lot of confusion and uncertainty prevails. Though the aspirants as well as other senior members of the state medical council have conveyed their apprehensions to the state returning officer, the volatile situation in view of the postal ballots remains a cause of concern. SIRSA, SEPTEMBER 23 The brutal killing of Dharmender and Nidhi for honour at Garnawathi village in Rohtak while sent shock waves across the civil society, it brought the role of khap panchayats to the fore once again. Though khap panchayats have condemned the killings, representatives of various khaps have demanded an amendment to the Hindu laws to ban marriages in the same gotra and same village. "In fact, a marriage without the consent of parents should not be allowed under the Hindu laws and such weddings should be considered as a crime and declared null and void," demanded Sube Singh Samain, the state spokesperson of Sarva Jatiye Sarva Khap Panchayat in Haryana. "There should be an amendment to the Section 5 of the Hindu Marriage Act and a condition should be added that the "sankalp of kanya daan" must be made either by father or mother and if they are not alive, then by brothers, uncles or maternal uncles," he added. Samain said customs and usages had the force of law. While condemning the killings, Sube Singh Samain maintained that it was a case of "grave and sudden provocation" and in such circumstances, no one could have been stopped from committing such crime. Santosh Dahiya, state president of the women wing of the Sarva Jatiye Sarva Khap Panchayat, said that an awareness programme was needed to educate the youth that boys and girls of the same village and same gotra were descendents of the same "dada" (grandfather) and hence their marriage could not be allowed. She said such customs and usages were prevailing in Haryana since ages and the Constitution recognised such customs and usages. She condemned the killings but said khap panchayats had no role in such crimes. Jagmati Sangwan, national vice-president of the AllIndia Democratic Women's Association (AIDWA), however, brushed aside khap panchayats' demand of amending the law and said such short-sighted measures would not work. "There are certain communities within Hindu religion who recognise same village and same gotra weddings. How can we force people to follow a law which is against their customs," she asked. "In this globalised world, parents should understand their children's feelings and needs," she added. Jagmati Sangwan said the khap panchayats' demand of amendments to the law was counterproductive as children could start changing their religion to evade the new law. She said there was an urgent need to pass a law against honour killings, which was lying before the Centre since 2007. Lakh of youths have given signatures in its favour but the Haryana Government, had written against the need of this law, she alleged. Social activist DR Chaudhary, a former member of the Haryana Administrative Reforms Commission, said a new law was not an answer to the incidents of honour killings. There are laws against murder and rape but have these laws been able to stop these crimes?" Chaudhary asked. Same gotra and same village marriages are not a general rule in Haryana. Social issues have social answers and killing is certainly not the answer," he said, while adding that parents should try to educate their children on such issues.
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