31122018-JTR-01.qxd 12/31/2018 1:01 AM Page 1 c m y b MONDAY | 31 DECEMBER 2018 | JALANDHAR JALANDHAR TRIBUNE Poppy husk seized No clear winner Welcoming 2019 Counter intelligence wing seizes 8.56 quintal of poppy husk concealed in a truck. P2 2018 finally saw some brave writing emerge in comedygripped Pollywood. P3 From travelling to partying, TV actors share their New Year’s Eve plans. P4 FORECAST MAINLY CLEAR SKY | MAX 18°C MIN 2°C | YESTERDAY MAX 18°C MIN 3°C | SUNSET MONDAY 5.34 PM SUNRISE TUESDAY 7.26 AM 40 booked after violence at Sultanpur Lodhi village Aparna Banerji Tribune News Service Jalandhar, December 30 As many as 40 persons were booked after violence broke out at booth number 33 of Bharoana village in Sultanpur Lodhi here today. The polling remained disrupted for over an hour after polling staff was allegedly beaten up, attempts to snatch ballot papers were made and furniture at the booth was broken. An altercation between two polling agents (of two sarpanch candidates of the village) at the booth escalated as a few persons standing in the queue for voting along with over 35 persons jumped over the wall of Government Primary School, where voting was under way, and entered the booth. They hurled bricks at each other and broke chairs at the polling station. There was an attempt to snatch ballot papers. The Bricks and stones lie on a road after a clash occurred between two groups during the panchyat poll outside a booth at Bharoana village in Sultanpur Lodhi on Sunday. TRIBUNE PHOTO PANCHAYAT POLLS authorities said the bid was foiled and polling was resumed after 10-15 minutes. Bricks were hurled by hooligans inside the booth also. Four villagers were injured during the scuffle. While the police claimed that polling was disrupted for 15- 20 minutes, sources claimed it remained disrupted for over an hour, before it could be resumed again. In another incident that happened outside the same booth, the police arrested three men with a pistol, while two of their accomplices managed to flee the spot. Kapurthala ADC Rahul Chaba, Sultanpur Lodhi DSP Tejinder Singh Hundal and Sultanpur Lodhi SDM Dr Charumita reached the spot. The DSP said, “It was not booth capturing. It was merely a fight between two polling agents that escalated. The situation remained tense for a while, but polling resumed and things went back to normal soon.” Speaking on the arrests regarding illegal weapons, he said, “This was an unrelated incident.” The SDM said, “An altercation between two polling agents escalated into a fight. But no harm was done and polling resumed soon.” 74.5 % polling recorded in city Tribune News Service Jalandhar, December 30 Jalandhar recorded a polling percentage of 74.5 per cent during the panchayat elections held today. Deputy Commissioner Varinder Sharma, Police Commissioner Gurpreet Singh Bhullar and SSP Navjot Mahal kept a vigil over the entire situation during the polling hours by visiting key and vulnerable polling booths. The officers visited polling booths in Bambiawal, Jandusingha, Hazara and other villages where they held detailed deliberations with polling staff, voters and representatives of political parties. They said these elections were significant as they would be instrumental in strengthening the democracy at the grass-roots level. Meanwhile, the officers thanked the wise people of the district for again upholding the glorious tradition of exercising their franchise freely by casting their votes without any fear. They said peaceful turnout by the voters for exercising Residents show their voter ID cards before casting their votes at a polling station in a village in Jalandhar on Sunday. TRIBUNE PHOTO: MALKIAT SINGH Officials keep vigil Deputy Commissioner Varinder Sharma, Police Commissioner Gurpreet Singh Bhullar and SSP Navjot Mahal kept a vigil over the entire situation during the polling hours by visiting key and vulnerable polling booths. their franchise reflects the love that Punjabis have for their democratic rights. Polling was largely peaceful and there was no report of any untoward inci- dent from any polling booth in the assembly constituency. They said no major incident of violence was reported during the voting that started at 8 am Two old BSP sarpanches back in saddle 77.4 % turnout in Nawanshahr Deepkamal Kaur Nawanshahr, December 30 Nawanshahr witnessed a percentage of 77.4 during the panchayat elections conducted today in as many as 324 villages. Voters of these villages exercised their franchise to elect 307 sarpanches and 1,146 panches. Earlier, as many as 159 sarpanches and 1,676 panches were elected unopposed after withdrawal of nomination papers and today 307 sarpanches and 1,146 panches were elected. DC Vinay Bublani said the elections for the five vacant posts of panch of four villages would be conducted as per the directions of the State Election Commission, Punjab, as the nominations for these posts were found incor- Tribune News Service Jalandhar, December 30 Even as this year’s panchayat poll largely saw fresh faces winning the posts of sarpanch, there were some old timers too who made it again. Among the most prominent such winners is BSP leader Sukhwinder Kotli, who has won the post of sarpanch from his native Kotli Than Singh village. Having contested the MLA elections from Adampur in 2012 and MP poll from Jalandhar in 2014, Kotli chose to return to village politics again. A graduate, Kotli says, “I was just 29 when I became sarpanch here. At 54, I am happily going back to grassroot BSP leaders Sukhwinder Kotli and Kanti Mohan (right) celebrate their victory with their supporters in Jalandhar. TRIBUNE PHOTO politics to enjoy the love showered by my villagers. Village politics will again give me more connection to understand the social fabric of society and stay connected to ground-level issues.” A prominent Dalit leader, he had first won in 1993. He remained a winner for three more consecutive elections in 1998, 2003 and 2008. In 2013, his elder brother Balvir Singh became sarpanch. The village has about 1,500 SC voters and about 500 general voters. Like Sukhwinder Kotli, another prominent BSP leader Kanti Mohan has won elections for the fourth time from Muthada Kalan in Phillaur. He has won with a lead of nearly 100 votes. Kanti Mohan is known to take a First-timers seek drug-free villages, elderly hope for improvement Aakanksha N Bhardwaj Tribune News Service Jalandhar, December 30 First-timers, men, women and elderly, all stood up in a row to cast their vote. Their minds were occupied with various issues regarding their village, hands had voter cards which showed that they still had a hope and they did not want to let go of this opportunity to improve the situation of their villages. A visit to a few villages in Jalandhar district on the day of poll revealed that the firsttimers were hoping that problems which they had been witnessing since childhood would now get solved. While others were a little reluctant to speak about the drug menace in their villages, several first-timers spoke blatantly and said the young generation had fallen prey to drugs and they wanted that it must get eradicated. Kajal, a first-time voter from a village who is pursuing BSc, said the village youth were into drugs. “I am going to cast vote for the first time and I really A first-time voter shows ink mark at a booth in Jalandhar on Sunday. MALKIAT SINGH wish that the one who becomes sarpanch must work to remove drugs from our village as the problem here is grave,” the young girl said. “I feel sad when I see young generation ruining their lives after drugs. I also want that the education system must get improved,” Kajal said. Elderly, who were finding it difficult to even move, also came to cast their vote. Though they said they had not seen any development in their villages even after years of voting and change of several sarpanches, they did not want to miss out on any chance hoping that this time something change would happen. Lack of medical facilities, proper education and bad roads leading to accidents remained other issues, as per them. An 80-year-old woman, who was sitting on a chair, said she had spent her entire life in her village and did not see any improvement but still she came again expecting that this time something different would happen. Voters of Bambiwal village complained of numerous problems in their village. The voters while expressing anger said years had passed but they had not seen development in the village. Residents also talked about poor medical facilities. Usha Rani, who was in her 40s, said the main problem in the village was lack of proper medical facilities. “If anyone needs any medical help at night, you can well imagine what they will go through in the absence of health facilities here,” said another woman. “There is a dispensary but there are no medicines. The medicines which are available are only for fever, cold and cough,” the woman said. “Health is an asset but if there will be no medical facilities, how residents can survive,” the voters said. Residents of Jandu Singha village said there was a huge problem of roads and sewage. “Everyone might think that these are common problems, but the one who suffers know the pain better. We face troubles due to potholed roads and sewerage-related problems, ” they said, adding that even their village did not have proper health facilities. Hazara village voters demanded a bus stop in the village. Manreet Kalra (28) said the village lacks street lights, which have resulted in rise of crime incidents. “There are various instances of robbery and snatching in the village. Hence, there is a dire need of the street lights, I even demand that CCTV cameras must get installed to nab miscreants,” Kalra said. c m y b huge stand on social issues and matters related to panchayat properties. He has drawn limelight by showing massive resistance to the SAD and Congress leaders during their visit to the Phillaur area. Bolina village elects MTech sarpanch Tribune News Service rect after scrutiny. “As many as 706 candidates for the post of 307 sarpanches and 1,146 candidates for the post of panches were in the poll fray,” he said. Appreciating the services rendered by returning officers and assistant returning officers, besides members of polling parties, the Deputy Commissioner congratulated all for completing the whole process smoothly and uninterruptedly. He applauded the district police, led by SSP Deepak Hilori, to maintain law and order during the poll process. “There were 1,350 police personnel, led by the DSPs and SPs, to monitor the whole security arrangements. Besides, 90 sensitive and 29 hypersensitive polling booths were given special Continued on page 2 in the morning and was completed at 4 pm. They said the district administration had made elaborate security arrangements for today’s polling and around 12,000 personnel from civil and police administration were deployed for smooth and hassle-free conduct of polling on all 1,200 polling booths. Sultanpur Lodhi sees 80% polling Tribune News Service Jalandhar, December 30 Sultanpur Lodhi registered the highest voting percentage in Kapurthala during the panchayat elections on Sunday. Around 80 per cent voters exercised their franchise. In Kapurthala district, around 75.98 per cent voters cast their votes on Sunday. Phagwara registered 77.40 per cent polling while Dhilan 77 per cent.Meanwhile, Nadala registered around 73 per cent polling while and in Kapurthala subdivision, 72.4 per cent voters caste their votes. For 546 gram panchayats in Continued on page 2 Big win for anti-drug crusader, bags 1,067 of 1,406 votes Deepkamal Kaur Tribune News Service Aparna Banerji Jalandhar, December 30 Among many youth winners in the sarpanch elections held today was Kulwinder Singh (27) of Bolina village in Jalandhar East. The candidate stands out among the rest as he is a MTech (structural engineering) pass out and works as an architect. He has the zeal to use his educational qualification for development of his village. Kulwinder defeated middle-aged candidates Dilsher Singh Shera and Madan Gopal Bagha from the village, winning by a margin of 32 votes. A total of 907 votes were polled in the village. Having studied from Ramgarhia College, Kulwinder said: “I came in the race with the support of youth, elderly and NRIs. Now that I have won, I will fully work as a sewadar of people. I wish to improve the standards of school education in my village so that the entire village becomes educated. Educated residents will then themselves strive for its development.” “As far as my educational background is concerned, I will set up a treatment plant to treat the sullage in the village pond and put the treated water to use again,” he said. Tribune News Service Jalandhar, December 30 An anti-drug crusader at Dayalpur village in Kapurthala has bagged a huge victory. Harjinder Singh Raja, who has been fighting against the flow of drugs at his village, has bagged 1,067 of the total 1,406 votes becoming the sarpanch of the village. While 193 pahchayats in Kapurthala chose sarpanches – including Seechewal village – primarily to avoid the flow of drugs and liquor in the elections, in Dayalpur also the primary poll plank in the elections was to prevent corruption and drugs. Bagging a whopping 1,067 votes in the panchayat results announced today at the Dayalpur village, Raja’s nine-member panchayat also includes his chosen candidates who were contesting against the issue of drugs. While the neighbouring villages as well as the local police are well versed with the antidrug campaign at the village, Raja was almost the tacit sarpanch of the village – referred by many as ‘sarpanch ji’ – due to his campaign to ensure de-addiction for several People have extended a wholehearted to ❝ideals and campaign against drugs. Mysupportto our plan is develop the village further and ensure that youth are not addicted to the menace. HARJINDER SINGH RAJA youths of the village. While woman panch Kamaljit Kaur was also chosen unanimously by the village with Raja’s support as well, the village, which is close to Hamira, also set up a gym at the village under his initiative, which is now being frequented by many reformed addicts. NRI supporters of the movement also began funding the drug de-addiction treatment and transportation for daily visit of local addicts to the Outpatient Opioid Assisted Treatment (OOAT) centre, which is 25 kms away, after Raja’s campaign. Earlier, bills of addicts’ deaddiction transportation and treatment were also being paid by Harjinder himself. Having gone to England in 2005, Raja came back in 2016. Since then, he took hundreds of youths of the village to the nearest OATS centre to free them from addiction. ❞ Kiranbir Kaur, sister-in-law of Bholath MLA Sukhpal Khaira, lost the panchayat elections at Khaira’s native Ramgarh village. While Kiranbir Kaur received 400 votes, winning candidate Nirmal Singh received 454 votes. Half of village residents abstain from voting Almost half of the people of Gillan village in Kapurthala boycotted the voting today due to having qualms over the rejections of papers of candidate Kehar Singh. While the village has a total of 402 votes, 50 per cent of the villagers stayed away from voting. Rejected candidate Kehar Singh said: “My papers were unduly rejected and as a mark of protest by the villagers, half of the village residents did not cast their vote.”
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