Smog in NCR: State not to blame, CS writes to Centre
Unwarranted criticism over stubble burning prompted the Haryana Government to emphatically refute these charges, while stressing that the state was in no way responsible for the pollution resulting in deterioration of air quality in the National Capital Region (NCR).
In a letter to CK Mishra, Secretary, Ministry of Environment, Forests and Climate Change, Haryana Chief Secretary DS Dhesi, quoting facts and figures, said stubble burning in Haryana was only confined to 0.3 per cent of the area where harvesting was over and that the number of incidents in districts adjoining Delhi were even less.
According to the information available, 28.12 lakh meteric tonnes of paddy had arrived in the mandis till date and harvesting was over in 5.62 lakh hectares. So far in Haryana, 875 incidents of fire had been reported and stubble had been burnt in 1,750 hectares, meaning thereby that fire incidents were restricted to only .3 per cent of the total area harvested. These figures, the letter maintained, were based on the reporting of fire incidents identified through satellite monitoring by HARSAC.
Sources said it was further specified that the number of incidents in the districts around Delhi were even fewer. While Palwal saw the highest instances of stubble burning, 26, Panipat had 14 such cases, followed by Sonepat with nine, Jhajjar with three and Faridabad with two cases.
The letter took note of the fact that the falling air quality was being attributed to Punjab and Haryana in the media and mentioned that this vilification of farmers was contrary to the facts since Haryana had successfully checked straw burning. It went on to explain that 871 custom hiring centres had been set up at a cost of Rs 102.54 crore and the Deputy Commissioners and the SDMs were actively involved in the campaign to prevent paddy straw burning.
While maintaining that the farmers, too, had taken to technology and understood the adverse impact of burning stubble, the government would continue its strict vigil and monitoring round the season through the district administrations, the letter added.
28.12 lakh meteric tonnes of paddy had arrived in the mandis and harvesting was over in 5.62 lakh hectares. So far, 875 incidents of fire had been reported and stubble had been burnt in 1,750 hectares, meaning thereby that fire incidents were restricted to only .3 per cent of the total area harvested
While Palwal saw the highest instances of stubble burning, 26, Panipat had 14 such cases, followed by Sonepat with nine, Jhajjar with three and Faridabad with two cases
Are farmers responsible for air pollution?
Public will judge them: CM on INLD dispute
Taking a dig at the alleged dispute within the INLD, Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar on Sunday claimed it to be a “domestic dangal” and said, “The feud within the INLD is ‘gharelu dangal’ and political parties have some accountability towards the public. They should avoid it. If they have done so, then the public is the best referee to judge them.”
The CM was at the Ramlila ground here to attend the 70th annual wrestling competition organised by Shri Jagdamba Devi Pankha Dangal Committee.
While interacting with mediapersons, the CM said that there must be healthy competition in games as well as in politics.
On the issue of firing at the wife and son of a judge by his gunman in Gurugram, Khattar said that he has asked for the counselling of gunmen involved in VIP security. He advocated the counselling of all the persons occupying responsible positions.
While addressing the gathering, Khattar emphasised on the significance of wrestling and exhorted the players to take part with dedication and honesty.
The CM lauded the efforts of players from Haryana who brought laurels by winning medals in various games. Khattar also praised the sports policy of the state.
Is CM Manohar Lal saying right?
Sanskrit to be mandatory in govt schools in state
Sanskrit will be made a compulsory subject in the curriculum of the government schools in Haryana from the next academic session.
State Education Minister Ram Bilas Sharma announced this while speaking at a function organised by the Bharat Vikas Parishad here.
Addressing the function organised in connection with a national-level competition of Hindi and Sanskrit Group songs at Saraswati Vidyalaya here, Sharma said as Sanskrit was considered a divine language and had been the soul of Indian languages and culture, the state government had decided to make it a compulsory subject from classes VI to X. A separate platform known as Haryana Sanskrit Board would also be set up to promote the language, he said.
Will this decision of the government be good for children?
Self-styled godman Rampal found guilty of murder
28 others guilty too
A district court today held controversial sect head Rampal, 67, guilty of murdering six of his followers during a violent standoff with the Haryana Police at Satlok Ashram in Barwala town in 2014.
Additional District and Sessions Judge DR Chalia convicted Rampal and 28 others, including four women, in two criminal cases registered under Sections 302 (murder), 343 (wrongful confinement) and 120-B (criminal conspiracy).
Six of those convicted, one a woman, are common accused in both cases registered on November 19, 2014, at the Barwala police station.
The quantum of punishment in both cases will be pronounced on October 16 and 17. Rampal was produced before the judge in a makeshift court set up in Central Jail No. 1.
The public prosecutors, including district attorney Mahinder Pal, Narinder Kumar and Rajiv Sardana, said the accused had been held guilty on the basis of circumstantial evidence.
“All accused have been convicted of murder and criminal conspiracy having a minimum punishment of life term,” Pal said, adding that a total of 45 witnesses deposed in FIR No. 429 and 43 in FIR No. 430.
Defence lawyer JK Gakhar said they would file an appeal in the Punjab and Haryana High Court.
He argued that almost all deceased were suffering from an ailment, including heart disease. “Their medical examination had revealed that they had died of suffocation and thus it did not amount to homicide. The police during the clashes with the followers had fired 59 teargas shells and 28 chilly power shells, besides using water cannon and resorting to cane-charge,” he claimed.
On August 29, 2017, a court had acquitted Rampal and six others in two cases of rioting, unlawful assembly, disobedience to order duly promulgated by public servant, and wrongful confinement registered at the Barwala police station on November 17 and 18, 2014.
Ex-JE to sect head
Rampal, 67, a native of Dhanana village in Sonepat, was a former junior engineer with Haryana’s Irrigation Department before he set up Satlok Ashram in 1995. He started giving ‘naam daan’ (initiation) in 1994 and later became self-styled head of the Kabir Panthi sect. He quit job on May 21, 1995.
Two cases were registered following the death of six followers — five women and an infant — during clashes that erupted after the police proceeded to arrest Rampal, holed up along with 15,000 followers inside his 12-acre ashram in Karontha village in November, 2014.
What led to it
In July 2014, Rampal’s supporters had indulged in vandalism in a Hisar court where they had gone in connection with a 2006 murder conspiracy case. Taking suo motu cognisance of the incident, the HC summoned Rampal. It ordered Rampal’s arrest after he failed to appear in court, leading to the ashram standoff.
Should Rampal get severe punishment?
After ruckus at Gohana rally, Dushyant’s aides shown door
The family feud between “chacha” and “bhatija” — Leader of the Opposition Abhay Singh Chautala and Hisar MP Dushyant Chautala — has created ripples in the state’s main opposition party, the INLD.
Four days after a section of workers created ruckus in INLD’s Gohana rally, party supremo Om Prakash Chautala showed the door to some of the prominent party leaders in an organisational restructure announced on Thursday.
Chautala also dissolved the youth wing of the INLD, and the national and state units of the Indian National Students Organisation (INSO), saying that the two wings lacked discipline and commitment to the party’s ideals.
A press release issued by the INLD stated, “The youth wing failed to play its role during the Gohana rally, while the INSO was found indulging in blatant anti-party activities. It is also accused of entering into a conspiracy with anti-party forces to disrupt the rally and smear the name of the INLD.”
Dushyant’s younger brother, Digvijay Singh Chautala, was the national president of the INSO, while his supporter Pradeep Deswal was the state president of the students’ body.
When contacted, Digvijay said only Ajay Singh Chautala, who is the founder member of the INSO, could dissolve the organisation. “I have not received any communication regarding dissolution of the INSO from my father (Ajay),” he said.
Both Dushyant and Digvijay are sons of Ajay, who, along with Chautala, is serving imprisonment in the JBT teachers’ scam case.
The Thursday’s developments indicate that Chautala wants to entrust Abhay, who has been spearheading the INLD’s campaign against the BJP government on the SYL canal and other issues for four years, with the task of leading the party to the 2019 Assembly elections
Among those who lost their positions are Naresh Dwarka and Rajendra Litani, district presidents of Hisar and Charkhi Dadri, respectively. The two are supporters of Hisar MP Dushyant.
His supporters had allegedly hooted during Abhay's speech at the Gohana rally on Sunday.
Chautala also announced new office-bearers of the national body. He himself remains the national president, while vice-presidents are Anant Ram Tanwar, Sadhu Ram Chaudhary, Narayan Parsad Aggarwal, Kumari Phoolwati, Ashwani Dutta and Ram Bhagat Gupta.
The new parliamentary board will have Chautala as the chairman and Ashok Arora, BD Dhalia, Anju Singh and Kamal Nagpal as its members.
Ripples in INLD over Chacha-bhatija feud
Hisar MP Dushyant Chautala’s supporters had allegedly hooted during Leader of Opposition Abhay Chautala’s speech at the Gohana rally on Sunday. They continued sloganeering even during INLD supremo Om Prakash Chautala’s address. The party patriarch had to warn from the stage that he would show all them the door.
Executive bodies intact: state INSO chief
Rohtak: Pradeep Deswal, the state president of the Indian National Students Organisation (INSO), has said the national and state executive bodies of the organisations have not been dissolved. In a statement issued here on Thursday, he said the right to dissolve its executive body rested with INSO’s founder Ajay Singh Chautala. “The INSO’s executive body is intact. Reports regarding its dissolution are merely rumours,” Deswal.