Tribune News Service
Chandigarh, December 12. The Punjab Cabinet today gave approval to link the Mohali railway station with the Chandigarh metro rail project at a cost of Rs 1,427 crore. The total 37.57 km length of the metro rail covering Chandigarh, Panchkula and Mohali will be completed at a cost of Rs.10,900 crore.
An official spokesperson said two corridors would be developed for the project. One from Capital Complex, Chandigarh, to Gurdwara Singh Shaheedan, Sector 70, in Mohali, having a length of 12.49 km. At least 3.97 km in this section lie in Mohali. The second corridor will be from Mullanpur (Punjab portion) to Grain Market, Panchkula, having a length of 25.07 km. A total of 3.87 km in this portion will fall in Mullanpur.
To ensure quick dispensation of justice to the people of the state, the Cabinet approved the creation of 37 posts of Civil Judge (Junior Division)-cum-Judicial Magistrate besides entrusting the work of selection of 71 posts of PCS (Judicial Branch) to the Punjab & Haryana High Court by taking these posts out of the purview of the Punjab Public Service Commission (PPSC). The said posts will be advertised by the PPSC and the selection will be made by the recruitment committee of the High Court.
The Cabinet also approved an amendment to the Punjab Lokpal Act by making provision for the appointment of one Up-Lokpal.
To regulate the profession of travel agents and checking their illegal and fraudulent activities, the Cabinet gave its approval for enactment of the Punjab Prevention of Human Smuggling Bill, 2012. The Bill stipulates whosoever indulges in activities that result in sending people abroad illegally shall be punished with imprisonment for a period of not less than three years, which may extend up to seven years with fine. Whoever is again convicted of an offence under the same provision shall be punishable, for the second and for each subsequent offence, with double the penalty provided for that offence. The Cabinet decided to appoint the late ASI Ravinder Pal Singh’s daughter Robinjeet Kaur, who is M.Sc in computer science, as naib tehsildar on compassionate grounds.
The Cabinet approved an amendment to the Punjab School Education Board Act, 1969, to declare the Board as the sole body to discharge its functions. The move will empower the board in checking the malpractice of issuing bogus certificates/degrees which were not approved for employment in government as well as other organisations.
The Cabinet decided to slash the rate of VAT on timber and scaffolding from 13 per cent (plus surcharge) to 5.5 per cent (plus surcharge). The reduction will help prevent flight of timber and scaffolding units from Punjab to other states.
Acting on the written requests from farmers, the Cabinet gave its go-ahead to return their land leased to the Citrus Council.
The Cabinet also approved repealing of the Pension Scheme of 1996 for the grant of pension and gratuity to the teaching and non-teaching staff of the state’s privately managed recognised affiliated aided colleges.
To ensure better citizen centric services to the people and smooth functioning of the Pathankot and Fazilka district administration, the Cabinet approved the creation of 239 and 228 posts in various departments of Pathankot and Fazilka districts, respectively. The Cabinet also approved the creation of 28 posts in blocks of Bhagtan Bhai Ka in Bathinda, Raikot in Ludhiana, Sujanpur and Dorangla in Gurdaspur district.