<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>As a part of an ongoing secret dialogue between the two nations, India’s National Security Advisor Ajit Doval confronted his counterpart, Lieutenant-General Nasser Khan Janjua, in a telephonic conversation with evidence challenging Islamabad’s claims to be unable to locate terrorists involved in last year’s attack on the Pathankot Air Force base. Citing highly placed sources, a report in the Indian Express stated that the conversations saw Doval press Janjua for the arrest of the suspects, who Pakistani investigators had earlier claimed they were unable to locate.”The NSA’s decision to press Islamabad on the Pathankot case was driven not so much by any hope of action, but to test Islamabad’s intent under the changed circumstances,” the source told the newspaper.
ALSO READ Remembering 26/11: President Kovind takes pledge to make India safer, pays tribute to victimsPunjab had witnessed two terror attacks in 2015 and 2016.In the first attack, three heavily-armed terrorists wearing army fatigues, had stormed a police station in Dinanagar town of Gurdaspur district in July 2015 killing seven persons, including a Superintendent of Police, before they were gunned down during a day-long operation.
ALSO READ ‘Golden goodbye’: Zimbabwe’s Robert Mugabe to get $10m payoff and immunity for family In the second attack, four terrorists who had sneaked in from across the border, attacked the Pathankot air base on the intervening night of January 1 and 2 last year, claiming the lives of seven security personnel.The newspaper further claimed quoting sources that even after Islamabad has held Jaish-e-Muhammad chief Masood Azhar under protective custody since January, Pakistan’s intelligence services had released at least half-a-dozen individuals held in the wake of the Pathankot attack without charge.
ALSO READ Sigh of relief for citizens as government denies proposal of banning cheque booksThe India-Pakistan NSA-level dialogue began at a meeting in Bangkok on December 6, 2015, where the two men met along with Foreign Secretaries S Jaishankar and Aizaz Ahmad Chaudhry.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Minister of State for External Affairs VK Singh on Sunday met Iraqi Foreign Minister Ibrahim al-Eshaiker al-Jaafari in Baghdad, and held meetings with Iraqi National Security Advisor and Chief of Staff of the Army to coordinate search operations for the 39 missing Indians and find concrete information related to their whereabouts.The news agencies earlier quoted him saying that the search in Mosul and Badush to trace missing Indians has not revealed any positive results. He also said that Operation Hunt was over in Iraq. General Singh said “we will now have to rely on DNA samples” to ascertain the fate of the 39 Indians who were earlier believed to be held in ISIS captivity in Mosul and neighbouring areas. The minister said the search teams have explored all possible avenues and inputs in Mosul, Badoush and Talafar, but no positive results of any leads could be found. He said that the DNA samples collected from some of the family members of missing persons had been sent to match with the database in Iraq, and also with the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC).There are some mentally unstable ISIS captives in Iraqi prisons, but they are unable to identify themselves. “We will not lose hope as we have no conclusive proof they are dead or alive,” said VK Singh.The 39 Indians were kidnapped by terrorist group ISIS in June 2014. Among them, 22 were from Amritsar, Gurdaspur, Hoshiarpur, Kapurthala and Jalandhar in Punjab. One person, Harjit Masih, who escaped from ISIS captivity, claimed that the rest were shot dead.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Thirty-year-old survivor Harjit Masih, who managed to return from Iraq, today again repeated his claims that all his fellow Indians were killed by the ISIS terrorists there.”Why the government is not accepting the reality and giving proper information about the 39 Indians to their kins? If the government says all Indians are safe, why has it not produced any of them in all these three years! Moreover, what will I get by not telling truth,” Masih said talking to reporters here.He maintained that the 39 abducted Indians had been killed by the ISIS.”I still pray to God that my claim proves wrong,” he further said.Masih, who was abducted along with 39 other Indians in Iraq in 2014, had claimed that they were shot by militants few days after they were abducted.However, Masih resident of Kala Afghana village here, managed to return to India after giving a slip to his abductors in 2014 after being shot in his feet.The samples of the families of missing Indians were being collected the district authorities in Punjab.Health authorities here yesterday collected DNA samples of the family members of three of the 39 Indians missing in Iraq to ascertain their identities.A total of 39 Indians had been missing in Iraq since 2014. Among them, 22 were from Amritsar, Gurdaspur, Hoshiarpur, Kapurthala and Jalandhar in Punjab.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Even though there was no bursting of crackers, thanks to a Supreme Court ban on their sale, Congress leaders at the AICC headquarters here were exhilarated as news of a twin wins in Gurdaspur and in Vengara, by key ally Indian Union Muslim League (IUML, trickled in.The results come at a time when Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi is set to take over as party chief, and as the party is preparing for Assembly elections in Himachal Pradesh and Gujarat,.“This is a beautiful Diwali gift, packed with a red ribbon, for our to-be party president Rahul Gandhi,” said Navjot Singh Sidhu, a minister in the Punjab government.The landslide victory in Gurdaspur, a seat held by late actor Vinod Khanna, is seen as a shot in the arm for party cadres. Party spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala said the results were a reflection of the people’s approach towards the BJP. Other leaders attributed the victory to the general mood which is moving away from the BJP due to the economic slowdown, demonetisation, and GST.Analysts say the two victories, though marginal, may give Rahul Gandhi an advantage at a time of his elevation as party president.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Late BJP MP Vinod Khanna’s wife Kavita Khanna today expressed her disappointment over the Gurdaspur Lok Sabha bypoll results and said the party would introspect on the reasons of the defeat.The Congress today wrested the Gurdaspur seat from the BJP with its Punjab unit chief Sunil Jakhar trouncing saffron party candidate Swaran Salaria by a whopping margin of 1,93,219 votes in the high-stakes bypoll.”I am very disappointed with the Gurdaspur LS bypoll result. I accept the outcome. The party will introspect on the reasons (of its defeat),” Kavita Khanna told PTI.She congratulated Jakhar on his victory and said, “I am sure he, as an MP, will take care of the people of Gurdaspur seat irrespective of their political affiliations, the way Vinod Khanna ji used to do.”Notably, Kavita Khanna was among the front runners for the BJP ticket for the Gurdaspur bypoll. However, the saffron party chose businessman Swaran Salaria over her.In Gurdaspur bypoll results, Jakhar polled 4,99,752 votes, while BJP’s Salaria polled 3,06,533, poll official said.Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) nominee Major General Suresh Khajuria (retd) finished a distant third garnering mere 23,579 votes, losing his security deposit.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Congress’ Sunil Jakhar wins Gurdaspur LS bypollRuling Congress candidate Sunil Jakhar on Sunday won the Gurdaspur Lok Sabha bypoll by a huge margin of 1,93,219 votes over his nearest rival BJP contestant Swaran Salaria. “With this victory, people have reaffirmed faith in the leadership of Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh and at the same time,” said elated Jakhar. Click here to know moreRahul Gandhi trolls PM Modi after Donald Trump praises Pak in tweetsOn Sunday, US President Donald Trump, who is famous for taking U-Turns, tweeted that his country’s relationship with Pakistan was improving and that the US was happy with Pakistan’s co-operation. The tweet was picked up by Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi, who sarcastically asked Prime Minister Narendra Modi to go and hug the US President. Click here to know moreSomalia: At least 189 killed in twin blasts in capital MogadishuThe death toll from the most powerful bomb blast witnessed in Somalia’s capital rose to 189 with over 200 injured, according to Associated Press, making it one of the deadliest attacks since an Islamist insurgency began in 2007. Although a Reuters report said that the toll was still 85. Click here to know more.China has started to understand that India is no more weak: Rajnath SinghUnion Home Minister Rajnath Singh today said the country’s borders were “completely safe” and China has also understood that “India is no more weak”. Click here to know moreAustralian cricket team bus attack: Assam police arrests four for stone peltingIndia faced a major embarrassment earlier this week when the Australian cricket team’s bus was attacked in Guwahati during the recently-concluded T20 series. Click here to know more
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The counting process for the Gurdaspur Lok Sabha bypoll seat, which is witnessing a three-cornered race among the BJP, the Congress and the AAP, is underway.The Gurdaspur Lok Sabha seat had fallen vacant following the demise of actor-turned-politician Vinod Khanna of the BJP in April.It has nine Assembly segments — Bhoa, Pathankot, Gurdaspur, Dinanagar, Qadian, Fathegarh Churian, Dera Baba Nanak, Sujanpur and Batala.Gurdaspur Lok Sabha bypoll witnessed a three-cornered race contest among major political parties — the Congress, the BJP and the AAP.The bypoll is seen as a barometer for the popularity of the six-month-old Congress government in Punjab.Gurdaspur Lok Sabha seat has been a stronghold of the BJP. Actor-turned-politician Vinod Khanna had remained four- time MP from Gurdaspur Lok Sabha seat. Khanna had died of cancer at a hospital in Mumbai on 27 April this year.11:00 IST Sunday, 15 October 2017Congress candidate Sunil Jakhar was leading by 68,172 votes over his nearest rival BJP contestant Swaran Salaria in the counting of votes, as per trends available.10:28 IST Sunday, 15 October 2017Congress candidate Sunil Jakhar leading by over 50,000 votes 9:32 IST Sunday, 15 October 2017After completion of first round, Congress candidate Sunil Jakhar leads by 14,316 votes9:32 IST Sunday, 15 October 2017Congress leading in #Gurdaspur LS bypoll, BJP second and AAP third. 9:32 IST Sunday, 15 October 2017Congress candidate Sunil Jakhar had earlier claimed the bypoll would be a ‘referendum’ on the Modi government. The BJP had also tried pulling out all the stops to retain the seat, which Khanna had won four times on its ticket.9:32 IST Sunday, 15 October 2017The result will decide the fate of total 11 candidates including Congress nominee Sunil Jakhar, BJP’s Swaran Salaria and AAP’s Major General (retd) Suresh Khajuria.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>As Congress prepares to elevate Rahul Gandhi as the party president, Punjab Cabinet Minister Navjot Singh Sidhu on Saturday said Gandhi’s election to the post will be a game-changer for the party.Addressing party workers at a function in Amritsar, a day ahead of declaration of Gurdaspur bypoll results, Sidhu said evolution of Gandhi in recent times has been trustworthy and he’s a man of character. “He is a wonderful human being and a great example,” he said.”When the going was good, Madam (Sonia Gandhi) and Rahul bhai have sacrificed. It was easy for them in those ten years to have elevated him (Rahul) and it was very easy for her to take over everything and say I’m the Prime Minister. But did she do it? In those ten years everyone else was given opportunities and Rahul bhai was held back and when the times are tough, we have Rahul Gandhi bearing the brunt of everything, biting the bullet and marching on. He has character for it,” said Sidhu, talking to media.Sidhu, a former BJP MP from Amritsar was formally inducted into Congress a fortnight before the Punjab elections by vice-president Rahul Gandhi in Delhi.Terming him as the ‘best choice’ for the post of the party president, Sidhu said Gandhi is a credible leader and he was glad to have worked under him. “If he is made the party president, it will definitely boost spirit of party workers,” he said.Mincing no words, about his meetings with Delhi Chief Minister and AAP president Arvind Kejriwal before the Punjab Assembly elections in February, Sidhu said, “I have met Kejriwal just once, because they (AAP leaders) were so keen and harping on it and it was leaked 20 times to media. I have met Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka almost 10 times, and not a single thing was leaked to media. It shows.”‘Best choice for the post of party chief’Terming Rahul as the best choice for the post of party president, Sidhu said “his elevation will definitely boost spirit of cadre.” “Before Punjab polls, I met Kejriwal once. It was leaked to media 20 times. I met Rahul 10 times, but it was not leaked,” he said.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Suspended Punjab police officer, Salwinder Singh, who was questioned by National Investigation Agency (NIA) in connection with Pathankot attack case, was on Friday granted bail by Punjab and Haryana High Court in the rape case registered against him in Gurdaspur.Booked for sexually exploiting a woman whose husband was accused in a rape case, the former Gurdaspur SP has been lodged in jail since April after his surrender when he was declared a proclaimed offender if he continued to evade arrest.”He has been given bail in the case, which involved charges of rape and relevant sections of Prevention of Corruption Act. He will be released from jail on Saturday,” Salwinder’s counsel GBS Dhillion told DNA. The bail application was submitted before the court on July 27.Salwinder was booked for allegedly using his position to demand sexual favours from an accused’s wife under the false promise of helping her. The incident took place during his stint as Gurdaspur SP, which was marred by similar allegations from few other women police officials, which eventually led to his transfer out of Gurdaspur. Later, in August, citing his controversial conduct and indiscipline, the Punjab government decided to send him on premature retirement.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Jolting the AAP days ahead of the Gurdaspur Lok Sabha bye-election, Chinna, along with his supporters, took the BJP’s membership in the presence of the party’s national vice-president Prabhat Jha and state secretary Punjab Vineet Joshi.He accused the Aam Aadmi Party of straying from its ideals. Mann, he alleged, “is transforming the party into a private company”.”In order to defeat the Congress in Gurdaspur bypoll, I and my colleagues have decided to join the BJP and ensure Swaran Salaria’s (BJP candidate) victory from the seat,” Chinna said.The other AAP members who joined the BJP today include Dinanagar market committee’s former chairman Tarsem Singh Malkachak, AAP’s block president Pratap Singh Jethuwal, the party’s district general secretary BalwinderSingh Dalia, district organizing secretary Shivjinder Singh Dala, district secretary Kala Singh Sahewal, said a BJP party release.Welcoming Chinna and other AAP leaders, Jha said they will be given due respect in the party.”The move indicates Swaran Salaria’s victory is inevitable in Gurdaspur,” he said.Yesterday, AAP leader Kulbhushan Singh, who had contested the last assembly elections from Sujanpur seat, and the party’s general secretary, Lakhvir Singh, had joined the Congress, along with their supporters, in the presence of Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh in Pathankot.Gurdaspur Lok Sabha bypoll, which was necessitated after the death of BJP MP Vinod Khanna in April this year, will be held on October 11.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The BJP today announced that businessman Swarn Singh Salariya will be its candidate for the by-poll to the Gurdaspur Lok Sabha seat that fell vacant following actor-turned-politician Vinod Khanna’s demise.Polling for the Gurdaspur Lok Sabha seat in Punjab will take place on October 11. The seat fell vacant after Khanna, a four-time BJP MP, passed away in April this year.Salaria’s name was decided by the party’s central election committee, according to an official statement.After deliberating over the candidate’s name for many days, the party chose Salariya over Kavita Khanna, the wife of the late movie actor, according to party sources.The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) has already named Major General (Retd) Suresh Khajuria as its candidate while the Congress yesterday announced that its state president Sunil Jakhar would contest the by-poll.”Swarn Singh Salariya will be the BJP candidate for the Gurdaspur parliamentary constituency bypoll,” said Punjab BJP secretary Vineet Joshi.Salaria has business interests in hospitality, aviation and other sectors, Joshi said.Salariya is a native of the Chauhana village in Gurdaspur. He was an aspirant for the same seat in 2014 elections but the party opted for Khanna, who had represented the constituency earlier as well.Salaria hails from the Rajput community which has substantial presence in the constituency.Gurdaspur Lok Sabha seat has been a stronghold of the BJP. Salaria will be in a direct fight with Jakhar.Meanwhile, the party also announced K Janachandran Master as its candidate for the Vengara legislative assembly in Kerala.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A court today sentenced five persons to 20 years in jail for kidnapping and raping two sisters here in 2014. Additional Sessions Judge Ram Kumar Singla handed down the sentence and also imposed a fine of Rs one lakh each on the accused. They would undergo an additional two-year sentence if they do not pay the fine. The two girls from Dala village in Punjab’s Gurdaspur district went for a morning walk on March 10, 2014, when five youths in a car kidnapped them and took them to an unknown place where they were gang-raped. The accused were arrested and a case under IPC sections 376, 363, 366, and 120, was registered against Parveen Kumar, Mukesh Kumar, Lakhwinder Singh, Rinku, and Rakesh Kumar, all residents of Gurdaspur.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh today announced a series of projects for the holistic development of the border areas of Gurdaspur and Pathankot, including health and education infrastructure, besides new cards under the MGNREGA scheme. As many as 67,000 MGNREGA cards would be issued to beneficiaries in Gurdaspur and 30,000 in Pathankot, the Chief Minister said in his Independence Day speech here. Fulfilling a long pending demand, he announced a state- of-the-art new bus stand to be constructed in Gurdaspur at a cost of Rs 20 crore. An amount of Rs 84 crore had been set aside for providing toilets and water connections to all rural households in the district, he added. In a bid to improve police functioning, the Chief Minister announced Rs 2.50 crore for the upgradation of the infrastructure of police stations in Gurdaspur, Batala and Pathankot. Amarinder also said that though the Gurdaspur Civil Hospital had been shifted to the bypass, the dispensary with emergency, as well as maternity and child care ward, would continue to function from the old building in the city. The Chief Minister further said that the water supply and sewerage works in Gurdaspur would be completed at a cost of Rs 7.50 crore. Another Rs 18 crore had been released for development projects in Dera Baba Nanak and other areas of the district, he added. Stressing the importance of ensuring the progress of the sensitive border areas, the Chief Minister announced allocation of Rs 44.02 for health infrastructure upgradation and Rs 118 crore for school infrastructure upgradation in Gurdaspur. Another Rs 45 crore had been allocated for disbursement under the old age pension scheme, in addition to Rs 7 crore for the ‘Ashirwad’ scheme, he added. The Chief Minister also announced the construction of a new Sainik School in village Dalla Gorian, Tehsil Gurdaspur. Besides a Rs 67 crore outlay for the urban facelift of Pathankot and another Rs 42 crore for urban facelift of Batala, the Chief Minister also announced the setting up of a PEPSICO bottling plant at Pathankot, where link roads would be repaired at a cost of Rs 55 crore. The Chief Minister also announced air connectivity to Pathankot, with flights set to be operational by September 30 this year. The announcement of development projects assumes significance in the wake of upcoming Gurdaspur Lok Sabha bypoll. The seat fell vacant after BJP MP Vinod Khanna died of cancer in April this year. In other key announcements, the Chief Minister said the civil hospital at Fatehgarh Churian would be upgraded, with water supply and sewerage works in the area also to be completed at a cost of Rs 7.5 crore. A new Navodya Vidyalaya would also be set up in Fategarh Churian, said the Chief Minister, besides announcing the establishment of a new Revenue Sub-division, as well as a railway over-bridge in Dina Nagar and a new degree college at Kalanaur. Among other development initiatives, the Chief Minister announced the construction of a new bus stand at Qadian, along with 100 per cent water supply and sewerage facility at a cost of Rs 32 crore. The government has also decided to set up a new hospital, in addition to 100 per cent water supply and sewerage in village Ghumaan in Sri Hargobindpur. Later, the Chief Minister also inaugurated the newly built Gurdaspur District Administrative Complex, constructed at a cost of Rs 50 crores. Spread over an area of 6 acres, the complex houses the offices of the DC and other administrative officials.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Punjab medical education and research minister Brahm Mohindra today ordered a vigilance inquiry into a degree racket under which fake certificates were issued in the name of Baba Farid University in the state. The matter of fake certificates and fake degrees was detected recently by the Registrar of the Board of Ayurvedic and Unani Systems of Medicine when Rajesh Kumar of Gurdaspur visited the board for a renewal of his registration certificate, an official spokesperson said. The registrar, Sanjeev Goyal, found the certificates of the candidate were fake as Sonam Dhiman, a Pathankot based doctor, was registered against the number provided by Rajesh. Mohindra, considering the seriousness of the matter, ordered a vigilance inquiry to expose fake degree racket. “There seems to be a wide spread menace and the same shall be unearthed and guilty shall be brought to book who are duping the candidates and endangering the health and the lives of the innocent public,” he said.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Punjab Police today nabbed two more persons with alleged links to the terror module busted last month, which had reportedly been tasked to target “anti-Sikh” leaders in the state. Gurpreet Singh and Simranjit Singh were arrested from their native villages of Jiwanwal (Faridkot) and Kamalpur (Moga), respectively, according to a police spokesperson. Two .32 bore pistols, four magazines and cartridges have been recovered from their possession, he said. Citing investigations, the spokesperson said Canada-based Gurjeet Cheema had allegedly given two pistols, along with ammunition, to Gurpreet Singh alias Peet during his visit to India earlier this year. The latter had passed on one of the pistols to Simranjit Singh alias Nikka, for targeting of anti-panthic (anti-Sikh) people, based in Punjab, he said. The arrests followed investigations into the case related to the busting of the alleged terrorist module comprising Mann Singh (district Gurdaspur) and Sher Singh (district Jalandhar) on May 21, the spokesperson said. He said the investigations into the case, registered today under relevant provisions of the law including under Unlawful Activities Prevention Act 1967, are still continuing. “Peet has disclosed that his namesake, Gurpreet Singh, resident of district Moga, said to be based in Vancouver in Canada, had visited India between March-April 2016, and had indoctrinated and motivated him to work for the revival of terrorist activity in the State. “Later, in 2017, Canada-based Gurpreet Singh arranged an operational meeting between Gurjeet Cheema, Gurpreet Singh alias Peet and Mann Singh at village Mudki (Moga district), where Gurjeet promised to arrange delivery of weapons for targeting of anti-panthic people in the near future,” the spokesperson said. Peet had also allegedly said that Gurpreet Cheema and his associates based in Canada, such as Gurjinder Singh of Brampton (Canada) were regularly funding him and other members of the module, through formal and informal financial channels to “promote terrorist activities”, the spokesperson said.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>With a fall of 14.7 per cent from last year, as many as 57.5 % students in Punjab passed the Class 10th examinations conducted by Punjab School Education Board (PSEB), here on Monday.Girls led the way with a pass percentage of 63.97 per cent followed by boys at 52.35 per cent. Shruti Vohra of Ropar bagged the first position in the state securing 98.77 percent.As many as 3.30 lakh students had appeared in the examination, out of which 1.90 lakh students passed the examination. A total of 45,734 students could not pass the examinations and 94,271 students had compartments.The border districts in Majha region were among the best-performing districts; with Gurdaspur recording the highest pass percentage of 86.97 percent followed by Amritsar at 83.95 and Tarn Taran at 80.62 percent.However, a total of 11 out of 22 districts registered dismal performance with a pass percentage of less than 50 per cent, with Sangrur recording the lowest pass percentage of 42.85.The rural-urban divide was not much evident, as the pass percentage of students in urban areas was 57.93 percent, which was similar to those in rural at 57.28 percent. The government schools recorded a pass percentage of 52.80 percent.Ludhiana with 113 students in the merit list led the way with maximum number of students who found place in a merit list of 379 students in the state, followed by Patiala and Sangrur.With a drop of 14 per cent than last year, PSEB Chairman Balbir Singh Dhol said that the results had come down because of the ‘Marks Moderation System’ which was abolished this year. Earlier students used to get grace marks under the system, which led to an improvement in the results.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Over 57 per cent students of class 10 passed the Punjab School Education Board (PSEB) exams, the results of which were declared on Monday.The girls outshone boys in the exam with a pass percentage of 63.97 per cent as against boys’ pass percentage of 52.35 per cent, as per the PSEB result. A total of 3.30 lakh students had appeared in the class 10 exams, of which 1.90 lakh students passed the exam while 45,734 students failed and 94,271 students got re-appear.The PSEB on Monday declared the result of class 10 examination with overall pass percentage of 57.50, said an official spokesman. In 2015 and 2016, the pass percentage was 48.22 and 53.78 per cent, respectively.The Gurdaspur district recorded the highest pass percentage of 86.97 per cent in the state, while Sangrur’s pass percentage was the lowest at 42.85 per cent, as per the results. The pass percentage of urban and rural students was 57.93 and 57.28 per cent respectively, while the pass percentage of government schools was 52.80 per cent.Shruti Vohra, student of DAV public senior secondary school in Rup Nagar district, topped the state exams with 98.77 per cent marks.The second position was bagged by Amit Yadav, student of Sai Public Senior secondary school, Ludhiana, with 98.62 per cent.The third spot went to Simmi Kumari, student of Sai Public Senior secondary school, Ludhiana, scoring 98.31 per cent, according to the results.As many as 37,963 students got over 80 per cent marks in the exam, of which 25,432 were girl students.The Ludhiana district has maximum of 113 merit holders in the state.The subject wise pass percentage in Punjabi, English, Math and Science was 93.35 per cent, 78.68 per cent, 71.82 per cent and 78.83 per cent respectively.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Punjab unit of Aam Aadmi Party was today dissolved during the first meeting held under newly appointed party’s state president Bhagwant Mann here.AAP senior leaders including H S Phoolka, Prof Sadhu Singh, Aman Arora and Sukhpal Singh Khaira were present during the meeting. The marathon meeting that started in the morning and lasted till late evening was attended by all MLAs, party candidates, Zone co-coordinators and other office bearers, a party spokesman said. The positive and negative feedbacks regarding Vidhan Sabha elections were discussed during the meeting, he said.The Punjab unit co-president, Aman Arora will meet the volunteers and office bearers throughout state and take their suggestions regarding appointment of new office bearers, he said. Arora will start his tour under AAP Apnya Naal programme from May 18. The party has decided to form a disciplinary committee to look after issues related to anti party activities of the member. The committee will keep a vigil on anti-party activities on print, electronic, social media etc and will act against those found guilty.The issue of contesting upcoming civic polls and Gurdaspur by-poll were discussed in the meeting. Addressing the media, Mann said that the rumours and misinformation being spread by the Congress, the SAD and the BJP will not affect the AAP, and the party will bounce back with more strength. He said that lakhs of volunteers are still connected with the party. Mann said that AAP will continue to raise the issues related to public importance and will perform the duty of opposition leader with great responsibility.Replying about the infighting within the party, Mann said that party was like a family and there can be difference of opinion and it will be sorted out very soon. He said that efforts will be made to console those got separated from the party in the past. Arora said that he will start his Punjab tour from May 18 and will try to interact with the volunteers throughout the state. He said that suggestions will be taken from the volunteers for future course of action and formation of new body in the state.Khaira said that party will fight for the rights of people collectively and will not let the government to run away from its responsibilities. He said that AAP will create pressure on the government to act against the corrupt minister of previous Akali government. Accusing Amarinder Singh government of following the footsteps of Akali government, Phoolka said that in what capacity wife of Singh, Parneet Kaur is inaugurating the projects in Punjab.”Neither she is an MLA nor holds any constitutional post, then how can she inaugurate electric crematon ground then? asked Phoolka.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>As Gurdaspur gears up for a by-election following the death of MP Vinod Khanna, the late actor’s wife Kavita Khanna’s name is being fielded by local BJP workers to complete the developmental work initiated by her husband.Vinod Khanna, a four–time MP, first elected to the Lok Sabha in 1998, and went on to retain the seat till 2009, when he lost to the then Congress chief Partap Singh Bajwa. In 2014, he was chosen to contest the election and re-claimed the seat with a vote margin of 1.36 lakh.With two years to go for the next Lok Sabha polls, the constituency is now gearing up for a bypoll, with the names of actors Akshay Kumar and Rishi Kapoor doing the rounds.”Apart from being his (Vinod Khanna) wife, she has been actively campaigning during previous polls and has been overseeing the work in the constituency in his absence. She would be able to connect with the people,” says Vijay Verma, BJP General Secretary, Gurdaspur.Sources say she has expressed her willingness to complete the projects which the late actor had planned for the constituency.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A security alert was sounded in Pathankot on Thursday morning after two suspicious bags were found lying near the military base.According to initial reports, unidentified bags were recovered near Mamun Army cantonment in Pathankot.The police recovered two mobile tower batteries from the bags.A search operation is underway and security has been beefed up. Police have also cordoned off the area.On Wednesday, an abandoned Scorpio SUV was found in Gurdaspur district. A massive search operation was launched by the police of both the districts to hunt the suspects down.Though nobody has been arrested yet, the police claimed the suspects belonged to Jammu and Kashmir. Nothing suspicious was found from the SUV, police said, but the vehicle had a fake registration number, they said.Notably, Punjab had witnessed two terror attacks in 2015 and 2016.In the first attack, three heavily-armed terrorists wearing army fatigues, had stormed a police station in Dinanagar town of Gurdaspur district in July 2015 killing seven persons, including a Superintendent of Police, before they were gunned down during a day-long operation.In the second attack, four terrorists who had sneaked in from across the border, attacked the Pathankot air base on the intervening night of January 1 and 2 last year, claiming the lives of seven security personnel.
Wed, 26 Apr 2017-03:03pm , Gurdaspur , PTI
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A 55-year-old Pakistani national, who crossed the International Boundary inadvertently, was handed over to the Pakistan Rangers by the BSF, officials said on Wednesday.A BSF spokesman said that the troops of Border Out Post Kassowal arrested Nishar Ahmad Ansari of Nainkot in Pakistan on Tuesday after he crossed the International Boundary inadvertently.The Pakistan Rangers were contacted and the Pakistani national was handed over to them last evening on humanitarian grounds, the spokesman said.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Two persons were killed and three others seriously injured in an explosion at a scrap dealer’s shop near the Barnala pully area, on the outskirts of the city, here today. “Two persons were killed and three others injured in the incident,” said Gurdaspur DSP (City) Kulwant Rai. Police suspect that the explosion occurred after a hammer was used to break some object in the shop. Earlier, one person identified as Harpreet (35) was killed in the explosion and four injured persons were taken to the Gurdaspur civil hospital, from where they were referred to a hospital in Amritsar. “Another person, identified as Tarsem (40), succumbed to his injuries later,” the DSP said. The three injured persons were identified as Vijay Masih, his son Dhruv and Manav, police said. It was not a high-intensity explosion, police said, adding that a probe was on to ascertain the cause behind it. Gurdaspur SP (D) Sareen Kumar said a team of experts from Forensic Science Laboratory, Mohali has been called.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)
Mon, 27 Mar 2017-10:13am , Amritsar , PTI
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A suspected Pakistani intruder was shot dead by the BSF long the International Border in Punjab on Monday. Officials said the incident was reported at 6:20 AM when Border Security Force personnel on-duty spotted some movement ahead of the fence at the IB near the Paharipur border post in Gurdaspur sector.They said the suspected intruder was challenged repeatedly but he did not pay heed to it and hence was shot. The area has been cordoned off and a search has been launched to retrieve the body and look for other possible suspects in the area, they said.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The authorities rewarded the inmates of the Gurdaspur central jail who “exhibited good behavior” and saved some staffers when some prisoners clashed last week. The jail authorities today claimed the prisoners have returned to their daily routine. “The situation in Gurdaspur jail is normal now,” Punjab’s Additional Director General of Police (Prison) Rohit Chaudhary said. “We have announced several measures for the inmates who exhibited good behavior during the incident of rioting by about 150 inmates,” he said. The inmates of four barracks were rewarded for sheltering four prison staff members who were stuck during the disturbance and saved them from any harm at the hands of rowdy group, a jail official said. Violence had erupted in Gurdaspur jail after two groups of undertrials clashed when one group thrashed two staff members in the afternoon of March 24, forcing the police to open fire in the air, to rein them in. On Friday night, around 150 inmates again ran amok with several inmates including hardened criminals making a jailbreak bid by breaking portion of the outer wall of the jail which was thwarted by police. They broke locks of all the jail barracks, besides destroying CCTVs, mobile jammers and setting ablaze the quilts and furniture. Gauging the gravity of the situation, additional force including SWAT was brought from Majitha, Tarn Taran and Amritsar to control the violence. The situation was brought under control in the wee hours of Saturday, police said, adding that teargas shells were also lobbed. As many as 21 inmates were shifted to other jails while 30 inmates were booked for attempt to murder, rioting, damaging public property, police said. A mobile phone was also recovered from a gangster Jagtar Singh Jagga, police said. Undertrials were upset over the increased security measures at the jail and alleged that the jail authorities used abusive language against them, a police officer said. A bakery unit has also been approved for inmates while computer, yoga, music, English and meditation classes will be started next week in the barracks where the disturbance took place, official said. More than 44 leave cases were approved which were pending in DC office, the official said. Inmates were also encouraged to enroll for IGNOU courses in special enrollment drive and 31 inmates have expressed interest for it, the official said. As a special measure, inmates were allowed to meet their relatives for the whole week, the official said. A helpline number for the quick disposal of parole cases will be started in the DC office, the official said. There are around 900 inmates in Gurdaspur jail. The jail authorities also held meeting with inmates of all the barracks and a peace committee was constituted with inmates of each barrack. Inmate pledged to prevent other inmates from indulging in creating disturbance in the jail, official said. Taking a serious view of the jail violence, Chief Minister Amarinder Singh has convened a high-level meeting of police and Home department officials next week to review the security in the state’s prisons.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Punjab and Haryana continued to be under the grip of cold weather conditions, with Adampur being the coldest place in both the states after recording a low of 6.1 degrees Celsius. Gurdaspur and Bathinda in Punjab registered below normal temperature at 7.8 degrees and 8.3 degrees Celsius respectively. Halwara (9.7 degrees), Pathankot (8.1 degrees) and Amritsar (8 degrees) also registered below normal minimum temperatures, a MeT Department official said here. The cold weather conditions also prevailed in Patiala, where the minimum temperature settled at 9.6 degrees Celsius, three notches below normal, while Ludhiana recorded a low of 10.1 degrees. Union Territory Chandigarh registered a low of 9.5 degrees Celsius, down three notches against normal. In Haryana, Karnal was the coldest place after recording the minimum temperature of 6.8 degrees Celsius, six notches below normal. Hisar too experienced a cold night at 8.6 degrees Celsius, six degrees below normal. Ambala recorded a low of 11.3 degrees Celsius, down three degrees against normal. The MeT attributed the recent dip in mercury in the plains of Punjab and Haryana to fresh spell of snowfall last week at many places in neighbouring Himachal Pradesh and Jammu and Kashmir.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The airbase station here, which had witnessed a terror attack last year, was put on high alert today and a massive search operation was initiated in the area following intelligence input about presence of suspicious men. The joint operation of Punjab Police, the Army, the Air Force and the Himachal Pradesh Police was launched following the intelligence input, Pathankot SSP Nilambari Vijayjagdale said. Without divulging much information, she said the search operation is part of precautionary measures and more than 500 security personnel are engaged in it. The SSP said the operation is being carried out in villages and other areas located near the airbase station and air surveillance is also being conducted using helicopters. Besides patrolling by security personnel, Quick Response Teams have also been deployed to check any suspicious activity, police said. Last year, terrorists had sneaked in from across the border and attacked the air base on the intervening night of January 1-2 while Dinanagar in Gurdaspur was targeted on July 27 in 2015. The Pathankot attack had claimed the lives of seven security personnel while four terrorists were killed. In the Dinanagar attack, three heavily-armed terrorists wearing army fatigues had stormed a police station, killing seven persons, including a Superintendent of Police, before they were gunned down during a day-long operation.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Adampur and Karnal remained the coldest places in Punjab and Haryana, respectively, as cold conditions continued to persist most places in the the two states. Chandigarh, the joint capital of the two states, recorded a low of 11.2 degrees Celsius, which settled within the limits normal for this time of the season. In Punjab, Adampur shivered at a low of 6 degrees Celsius, followed by Gurdaspur which recorded a below normal minimum temperature of 7.8 degrees Celsius, a MeT Department official said here. Bathinda (7.8) and Faridkot (8) also registered below average minimum temperatures, they said. Amritsar recorded a low of 8.6 degrees Celsius, while the minimum temperature at Ludhiana and Patiala settled at 9.4 and 11.9 degrees Celsius, respectively. In Haryana, Karnal was the coldest place at a low of 6.5 degrees Celsius, four notches below normal range. Hisar recorded a low of 9.1 degrees Celsius, down three notches against normal. However, Ambala’s low settled at 12.5 degrees Celsius, two notches above normal. After a temporary respite, cold weather conditions have revived at most places in Punjab and Haryana during the past few days.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A day after a car allegedly tried to run over police personnel in Pathankot, it has emerged that the occupants of the vehicle were cattle smugglers. One of the five accused, identified as Hussain, surrendered before police today and gave details following which it emerged that they were cattle smugglers. He was later put under arrest, Pathankot police said. During preliminary investigation, it was found that the occupants had panicked on being stopped by police at a check barrier. They abandoned the car at a village in Pathankot yesterday and escaped, a police official said. The accused were allegedly involved in the illegal trade for the last two years, the official said, adding a hunt is on to nab the other accused, all of whom hail from Jammu and Kashmir. Yesterday morning, the patrol party of Pathankot police had tried to stop the silver-coloured Maruti Alto K-10, bearing Jammu and Kashmir registration number, at a check barrier in Sujanpur, Pathankot SSP, Nilambari Jagdalay Vijay had said. The occupants tried to run over the policemen and escaped. Nothing suspicious was found from the car which was later abandoned by its occupants, police had said. Notably, Pathankot remains on high alert after last year’s terror attack. Terrorists had sneaked in from across the border and attacked the Pathankot air base on the intervening night of January 1-2 last year, while Dinanagar in adjoining Gurdaspur district was targeted by terrorists on July 27, 2015. The Pathankot terror attack had claimed the lives of seven security personnel, while four terrorists were killed in the incident. Three heavily-armed terrorists wearing Army fatigues had stormed a police station in Dinanagar town in Gurdaspur district killing seven persons, including a Superintendent of Police, before they were gunned down during a day-long operation.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>As cold weather conditions have abated from most places in Punjab and Haryana, minimum temperature today again hovered a few notches above normal. Chandigarh, the common capital of the two states, recorded a low of 14.7 degrees Celsius, six notches above normal limits, a MeT Department official said here. Ambala in Haryana registered a low of 13.5 degrees Celsius, four degrees more than normal limits. Hisar recorded a low of 12.7 degrees Celsius, up two notches while Karnal’s minimum temperature settled within the normal limits at 9.8 degrees Celsius. Amritsar registered a low of 12.8 degrees Celsius, up by six notches while Ludhiana recorded a minimum temperature of 15.2 degrees Celsius, seven degrees above normal. Patiala registered a low of 13.4 degrees Celsius, four degrees above normal. Bathinda, Faridkot and Gurdaspur also recorded above normal minimum temperatures at 10.4 degrees Celsius, 12.8 and 10.4 degrees Celsius, respectively.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Pathankot air base attack, saying it took a long time in arriving at the conclusion that the abduction of its officer and his friends was not just a criminal robbery but was going to be serious national security threat. “The Committee is unable to understand why the terrorists let the SP and his friend off, which should be thoroughly examined by National Investigation Agency (NIA),” the report said. The Committee on Home Affairs said it is of the view that the role of narco-syndicate active in border areas of Punjab should also be investigated as the terrorists might have taken help of channels or networks used by smugglers to infiltrate the border, take shelter and carry out the terror attack. Expressing its displeasure with NIA for not concluding its probe even after a year, the panel said unless the investigation is completed at an early date, it will not be possible to answer the grave questions that were raised following the terrorist attack– like, why was no preventive action taken despite credible intelligence inputs and why was no action taken despite interception of communication between terrorists and their handlers? The Committee sought the response of the government on the visit of Pakistan’s Joint Investigation Team and whether it was made clear to the neighbouring country that a team from NIA would also be visiting that country for collection of evidence. The Committee was informed about the actions taken after Pathankot attack which included border domination by deploying one more battalion of BSF in Gurdaspur sector on Punjab Border, deploying technological solutions in two patches of 5-6 kilometers of riverine gaps and sensitive areas of Jammu Frontier, introduction of force multipliers and hi-tech surveillance equipment.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>early morning hours, where minimum temperature continued to hover above the normal limits at most places. The places affected by fog in the two states were Ludhiana, Patiala, Pathankot, Adampur, Halwara, Bathinda, Gurdaspur, Karnal and Hisar. Chandigarh, the common capital of the two states, recorded a low of 10.6 degrees Celsius, up four notches against normal, a MeT Department official said. In Haryana, Ambala recorded a low of 10 degrees Celsius, up three notches while Hisar’s minimum settled at 7.2 degrees Celsius. In Punjab, Amritsar registered a low of 7.4 degrees Celsius, up three notches against normal. Ludhiana recorded a low of 8.8 degrees Celsius, while Patiala registered a minimum temperature of 8.2 degrees Celsius. The hill station of Mount Abu in Rajasthan registered the lowest minimum temperature of 6 degrees Celsius followed by 6.9 degrees Celsius in Sriganganagar, 7.6 degrees Celsius in Dabok 11 degrees Celsius in Jaipur. Night temperatures were appreciably below normal in parts of Odisha and east Madhya Pradesh and below normal in some areas of Assam and Meghalaya, gangetic West Bengal, Bihar, west Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat, Marathwada and Vidarbha region of Maharashtra, Chhattisgarh and Telangana.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>The Election Commission today ordered closure of five distilleries in Punjab until the assembly elections are over, days after more than one lakh bottles of liquor were seized in one of the biggest seizures of alcohol in Bathinda. “The Commission has ordered closure of five distilleries. The production and dispatching of liquor in these distilleries have been stopped till the elections are over,” Punjab Chief Electoral Officer V K Singh told reporters here. The five distilleries and bottling plants, which have been shut down, are BCL Industries in Bathinda, Patiala Distillers and bottlers in Patiala, Adi Brownson Breweries, Kiri Afgana in Gurdaspur, United Spirits, Moonk in Sangrur and Pernod Ricord Gholumajra in Mohali, an official said. Singh said that liquor in huge quantity had been recovered in several parts of Punjab including Pathankot, Hoshiarpur, Ludhiana and Jalandhar ahead of assembly polls. “The source of supply of (illegal) liquor to vends from where the seizure was made have been established and five distilleries have been stopped temporarily. Liquor trade is regulated and no one can take out even one bottle without permission,” said Singh. After the code of conduct came into force, the Election Commission launched a crackdown on the illegal supply of liquor for luring voters during Punjab assembly polls. In one of the biggest seizures of alcohol in Punjab, the state excise department on Saturday recovered over one lakh bottles of liquor in Bathinda district, brought from multiple states like Haryana, Arunachal Pradesh, Himachal Pradesh. Besides, 1,000 cases of liquor in Hoshiarpur and 2,100 cartons from Pathankot were also recovered. Liquor distribution slips were also recovered in Jalandhar and Samrala in Ludhiana. The haul of illegal liquor was made after the Election Commission ordered state-wide drive to check distribution of liquor during high-stakes assembly polls in Punjab. Asked about any action in case of Bathinda seizure, Punjab Additional Director General of Police V K Bhawra said police was investigating the matter and action would be taken against the owners of go-down from where the liquor bottles were recovered. Polling will be held in Punjab in a single phase on February 4 and results will be declared on March 11.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Fog today reduced visibility in the early morning in Punjab and Haryana, where minimum temperature continued to hover above the normal limits at most places. The places affected by fog in the two states were Ludhiana, Patiala, Pathankot, Adampur, Halwara, Bathinda, Gurdaspur, Karnal and Hisar. Chandigarh, the common capital of the two states, recorded a low of 10.6 degrees Celsius, up four notches against normal, a MeT Department official said. In Haryana, Ambala recorded a low of 10 degrees Celsius, up three notches while Hisar’s minimum settled at 7.2 degree Celsius. Karnal recorded a low of 7.8 degrees Celsius, one notch above normal limits. In Punjab, Amritsar registered a low of 7.4 degrees Celsius, up three notches against normal. Ludhiana recorded a low of 8.8 degrees Celsius, while Patiala registered a minimum temperature of 8.2 degree Celsius. Pathankot (11.3 degrees Celsius), Bathinda (10.1 degrees Celsius), Adampur (8.5 degrees Celsius) and Halwara (7.8 degrees Celsius) also registered above normal minimum temperature.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A thick blanket of fog engulfed many places in Punjab and Haryana today, thus reducing the visibility levels and affecting normal lives. Vehicular traffic in the two states, especially along the highways, was also affected due to fog. The visibility levels were low at Mohali, Ropar, Jalandhar, Amritsar, Patiala and Ludhiana in Punjab and at Panchkula, Ambala, Kurukshetra, Karnal, Panipat, Rohtak, Jind and Hisar in Haryana, a MeT official said here. The common capital of Chandigarh, where foggy weather prevailed in the morning, recorded a minimum temperature of 10.7 degrees Celsius, five degrees above normal limits. Ambala’s minimum settled at 10.3 degrees while Hisar recorded a low of 8.9 degrees Celsius, one notch above normal, he said. Karnal registered a low of 8.8 degrees, four notches above normal. In Punjab, Amritsar recorded a low of 7.4 degrees, three degrees above normal, while Ludhiana’s minimum settled at 9.9 degrees Celsius, four notches above normal, the official said. Faridkot recorded a low of 7 degrees Celsius. Patiala (9.6 C), Adampur (7.3 C), Halwara (7.8 C), Pathankot (8.1 C), Bathinda (8.7 C) and Gurdaspur (11.1 C) also recorded above normal minimum temperatures.(This article has not been edited by DNA’s editorial team and is auto-generated from an agency feed.)