Abhay shedding crocodile tears on SYL, says Hooda; Is he right?
Chandigarh : Former Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda said the Indian National Lok Dal (INLD) leader Abhay Singh Chautala was shedding crocodile tears over the Sutlej-Yamuna Link (SYL) canal issue and alleged that the INLD was responsible for delay in the project.
Talking to mediapersons at his residence, Hooda mocked the INLD’s “Jail Bharo Andolan” from Bhiwani on Tuesday and said when Abhay announced the last time that he would dig a canal at Shambhu border, he returned after digging a road on Haryana’s border with Punjab.
Referring to the Rajiv-Longowal Accord on inter-state disputes between Punjab and Haryana, Hooda said had Abhay’s grandfather Devi Lal not initiated his Nyaya Yudh (battle for justice) against the accord, the canal could have been constructed much earlier.
He claimed that 90 per cent of the canal was ready both in Punjab and Haryana territories when the INLD launched Nyaya Yudh and it was due to the party’s opposition that the project came to a standstill.
Claiming that people of Haryana would not trust the INLD this time, Hooda maintained that it was only because elections in the state were drawing closure that the INLD had taken up the SYL issue.
“The SYL issue has been resolved with the judgment of the Supreme Court, which clearly states that the Centre should get the canal constructed through its own agency. The order had come in 2002, but the Punjab Government abrogated the water agreement in 2004. As MP from Rohtak, I had met then Prime Minister Manmohan Singh for intervention, after which the matter was sent to the Supreme Court as presidential reference. The presidential reference has been decided in favour of Haryana,” he said.
Hooda alleged that it was only because of lack of will on the part of the BJP government at the Centre and in the state that construction of the canal was getting delayed.
He said at a time when the BJP had governments at the Centre as well as in Haryana, nothing stopped it from implementing the SC verdict except lack of commitment to the issue.
Hooda said if the CM was ready to take the lead, he was willing to sit on dharna with him or court arrest with him on the canal issue.
The former Chief Minister hit out at Khattar government and alleged that no promise made before the elections had been kept by the BJP. Commenting on the INLD-BSP alliance, Hooda said it would not work as the former had allied with the BJP, the SAD and the BSP in the past, but dumped its alliance partners.
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Energy from bio-waste soon; Do the people want such projects?
Karnal : Union Minister for Drinking Water and Sanitation Uma Bharti and Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar on Monday launched the Union government’s ‘GOBAR-Dhan Yojana’ for managing and converting livestock waste and other bio-waste into energy.
Kunjpura village in the district was selected for the scheme, under which bio-gas would be supplied to 100 households after processing dung. She said panchayats would play a key role in implementation of the scheme, under which bio-gas plants would be set up. She greeted people on Buddha Purnima and said a new initiative was being taken on this day.
Referring to Swachh Bharat Abhiyan, she said a few areas had become 100 per cent free from open defecation, but they had to make these areas more clean. “The Prime Minister has called for a change in the country and this change should be accepted,” she said.
She lauded the efforts of people of Haryana for accepting the change and not creating hurdles in the path of progress. She expressed the hope that the state would be the foremost in implementation of the scheme. Replying to questions over the falling groundwater level in some areas of Haryana and Punjab, she said some of these areas had come under the dark zone. She hoped that Haryana would work on emerging from the situation.
Thanking PM Narendra Modi and Bharti for selecting Haryana to launch the scheme, Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar said the Prime Minister had given several schemes to the country and he had an objective behind every scheme.
He said the state government was making arrangements for generating bio-gas from cow dung and it would assist those panchayats intending to set up gas plants in their villages. “There are about 450 ‘gaushalas’ and ‘nandishalas’ in the state with about 3.41 lakh cattle,” he said.
He assured the Union Minister on effective implementation of the scheme. He said schemes which were launched from Haryana had always been successful.
Cong to blame for lack of basic facilities: Vij; Is four years for BJP to fulfil its promises?
Ambala : Health Minister Anil Vij has hit out at the Congress for “befooling” people in the name of development and said even after 70 years people lack basic amenities.
He said this while addressing a gathering in the district’s Bada village on the occasion of Ayushman Bharat Divas.
The day is named after the Ayushman Bharat Yojana, the public health programme of the Centre. It aims to provide underprivileged and economically backward people access to government as well as private healthcare facilities.
“Haryana is the first state in the country to start the implementation of the Ayushman Bharat Yojana. Under the scheme, the Health Department has invited online tenders from insurance companies. Soon, panels of hospitals will be prepared by selecting insurance companies,” Vij said.
According to the socio-economic census of 2011, 131 families of Bada village would be included in the scheme in the first phase, the Health Minister said. “All needy families will be covered in a phased manner.”
“The BJP government at the Centre and in the state works at the grass-roots level. Prime Minister Narendra Modi is aware of the problems related to the health of the poor. This is the reason he has provided 10 crore families with medical facilities up to Rs 5 lakh,” Vij said.
He distributed approval letters for LPG connections to three beneficiaries under the Pradhan Mantri Ujjwala Yojana.Civil Surgeon Dr Vinod Gupta informed the people about the National Health Mission and the Ayushman Bharat Yojana.
States collect Rs 37K-crore labour cess, 75% unspent; Does the State Government take more tax and reduces expenditure?
Chandigarh : The state governments in the country collected more than Rs 37,000 crore as cess for welfare of construction workers over the years. But when it came to its spending, most of the states seem to have shied away.
According to an RTI information obtained by a Ropar-based activist, Dinesh Chadha, till June 2017, all 29 states and seven union territories had collected Rs 37,482 crore as cess under the Building and Other Construction Workers Welfare Act. However, only Rs 9,491 crore was spent on workers’ welfare.
Under the Act, the state governments have to constitute boards for welfare of construction workers, which collect the cess and then spend on various schemes related to workers’ welfare. As per the Act, any individual constructing a building is liable to pay cess at the rate of one per cent of the total cost of construction to the board. There are 2.77 crore workers enrolled with various state boards in the country.
As far as performance of individual states and UTs is concerned, only West Bengal, Mizoram, Manipur, Kerala and Puducherry seem to have taken the welfare of workers seriously. All these states spent more than 50 per cent of the cess collected for the purpose.
Kerala is the only state to spend more than 100 per cent of the collections. The state spent Rs 1,579 crore on workers’ welfare against the collection of Rs 1,535 crore.
Chadha, who is campaigning for labour rights, said it was ironical that on the one hand, workers were dying in absence of basic needs while on the other, a lot of money collected for their welfare remained unspent. “It shows how sensitive our governments are for the welfare of the workers,” he said.
About the scheme
In the event of accidental death, a registered beneficiary’s family is given Rs 4 lakh while Rs 3 lakh is given if it is a natural death
In the event of 100 per cent disability, the beneficiary is provided with a relief of Rs 4 lakh. In case of partial disability, the compensation is proportionate to the disability of the beneficiary
Besides, children of registered construction workers are given uniform allowance/education allowance. A shagun of Rs 31,000 each is given for the marriage of two daughters
Punjab an average performer
Punjab collected Rs 1,029 crore as cess for workers’ welfare, but spent just Rs 496 crore, which is even less 50 per cent of the total collection. Nearly 6.1 lakh workers were enrolled with the board. Though the state is better than others, a report prepared by the Comptroller and Auditor General of India two years ago had revealed that Punjab’s performance was poor when it came to spending funds on the welfare of workers.
HSSC cancels process to fill 8,000 Group C posts; Has HSSC managed to give employment to the youths?
Chandigarh : More than five lakh applicants will have to wait longer for Group C jobs, as the Haryana Staff Selection Commission (HSSC) has cancelled the selection process and decided to call applications afresh.
This is because the state government has revised the selection criterion, dispensing with interview for recruitment in Group C and D posts, sources say.
As per the new criterion, the selection will be on the basis of a written exam, and applicants’ experience and socio-economic background.
Sources said the HSSC was to hold written tests for more than 8,000 Group C posts as per the old criterion and the dates for the tests were yet to be announced.
The posts included about 2,000 in Skill Development and Industrial Training Department, 600 in Health, 1,000 in Irrigation, 500 in Panchayat, 600 in police and 2,000 in Public Health Engineering.
The HSSC Chairman, Bharat Bhushan Bharti, said those who had already paid the fees would not have to pay it again and nor would they be considered overage. “Earlier, the applications were invited on the basis of the old criterion. So, it was necessary to cancel the process and seek applications afresh.”
The HSSC was recently in the news after Chief Minister’s flying squad arrested five of its employees for allegedly duping candidates by demanding money for jobs.
The commission is also in the process to fill 7,000 posts in the Haryana Police and 34,000 posts of Group D.