Bill to ban publication of Guru Granth Sahib passed in assembly

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Chandigarh, Dec 24 (UNI) The Punjab Assembly today passed the Jagat Jot Sri Guru Granth Sahib Satkar Bill which prohibits any private publisher from undertaking the printing, publishing or distribution of the Guru Granth Sahib, the Sikh scripture.

This right would solely lie with the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandik Committee (SGPC), which had written to Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal sometime back seeking a ban on the publication and distribution of the scripture by individuals or private publishing houses. The SGPC had contended that individuals or publishing house do not abide by the tenets of Sikhism while printing the scripture.

The Bill which was moved in the House by Rural Development Minister Ranjit Singh Brahmapura was later passed by voice vote.

The House also passed the Code of Criminal Procedure (Punjab Amendement) Bill which calls for trial of judicial cases through tele-conferencing. As per the clauses of the Bill, the decision on the judicial remand of an undertrail can be taken through tele-conferencing.

Moving the Bill in the House, Jail Minister Hira Singh Gabria told the members that this would be a check on the escape of undertrials from court premises while being transported from prison to the courts and viceversa. He sought to ally fears by Opposition members that undertrails would not get a fair trial through this concept.

The House also passed the Indian Stamp (Punjab Amendment) Bill reducing the stamp duty by one per cent from the existing eight per cent for women and nine per cent for males.

The House also passed the Punjab Education Development (Amendment) Bill moved by Education Minister Upinderjit Kaur which deals with the establishment of Adarsh Schools in the state for providing quality education to the poor, brilliant students to help them compete with public school students in higher institutions.

The House also passed the Punjab Infrastructure Development (Amendment) Bill, Punjab Affiliated Colleges (Security of service) Amendment Bill and the Punjab Motor Vehicles Taxation (Amendment) Bill.

The assembly also passed the Punjab Fiscal Responsibility and Budget Management (Amendment) Bill to provide for inter generational equity in fiscal management and long term stability of state by controling fiscal deficit and other financial parameters.

Moving the Bill, Finance Minister Manpreet Singh Badal said it aims to enforce fiscal discipline in the state. Leader of Opposition Rajinder Kaur Bhattal while participating in the discussion on the Bill demanded a white paper on the fiscal health of the state from the minister.

''My next Budget will the white paper on the financial position in the state'', Mr Badal told the House.


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