Shimla: Before turning our backs towards â€˜2007â€™ letâ€™s have a look at the major happenings which made news in the passed year and knocked at the door of Himachal to mark themselves with the dates of â€œ2007â€.
Janaury: On the very first day of the beginning of â€˜2007â€™ Himachal Police station was proposed to be computrised within a period of one year. Then Himachal released a new Power Policy and introduced a job portal from Himachal labour and employment department for the employers and job seekers in the State. It was also announced that taxis of Shimla and Dharamshala will have meters but seems to be in vain. Two Industrial Training Institutes (ITIs) were announced in Baroh and Lambloo each. Virbhadra Singh former Chief Minister depicted education and the roads as the two essential sectors required for the development of any area thus, announced that Himachal government took over Kanwar Durga Chand Memorial Degree College at Jaisinghpur to facilitate students in getting higher education near to their homes and proposed to connect every gram panchayat with motorable road by March, 2008. Himachal attracted Rs. 22000 crore industrial sector investment on the other hand the State Planning Board approved Rs. 14,000 crore for its five years plan. The State also envisioned constructing
Febrauray: The former Governor of Himachal Pradesh Dr. Hokishe Sema passed away and on the other side JP Industries signed MOU for cement plant in the State. Due to the failure of Wild Life authorities â€“ the Riwalsar zoo was ordered to be closed by the Central Zoo Authority moreover, local extinction of vultures in the State was also noticed. The issue of global warming hit the rivers and climate of Himachal. In order to deal with the drought like conditions prevailing in various parts of the State, it released Rs.53.14 crore as drought relief and it also becomes 1st State in
March: The year moved ahead and so did the news: Himachal cleared eight more industrial units, Moulu Ram Thakur was awarded with Dr.Yashwant Singh Parmar State Award for Culture, Himachal budget showed up, MP Pratibha Singh demanded the expansion of railways network in the state, Himachal Tribune and hindi fortnightly â€œJanpaksh Mailâ€ were launched for better readership about the state, CM, Mr. Singh, said Himachal State Government would generate 10,000 MW hydel power by the end of 11th Plan ending in 2011-12, a smile was seen on the faces of passport seekers as Himachal got its own passport office in Shimla, people were promised to get better drinking water as Central Government sanctioned additional Rs. 54.09 crore under Rajiv Gandhi National Drinking Water Mission centrally sponsored Accelerated Rural Water Supply programme, Central Government also approved the city development plan for Shimla, With MyHimachal President, Dr. Bhugol Chandelâ€™s continuous efforts, a bridge on Gobind Sagar was sanctioned by Himachal government, Japanese got crazy about Himachal peas and Himachal Pradesh Tourism Development Corporation earned all time high record profit of about Rs. 6 crore.
April: People welcomed this month with some pranks to celebrate April Foolâ€™s Day whereas water harvesting projects for every district of Himachal were announced. Alike, Police Stations all courts in the state were to be computerised, on the other side of the news: Centre approved an Agriculture Scheme of Rs. 22.22 crore for the state, first ATR-42, Deccan Airways Flight to Jubbarhatti was inaurgated by CM, State got 21 new colleges in one year, Teledata â€“eSys announced to set-up PC Manufacturing unit in Baddi, Himachal became first ISO:9001:2000 for E-Governance, there was a visit of Tibetian religious leader Dalai Lama in the Rajgarh area, Himachal panchayats were awarded total sanitation excellenence award and CM dedicates new ICU at IGMC Shimla.
May: This month was really spicy which had tinge of almost all flavours, Congress won Shimla Municipal Corporation (MC) or you can say Mini-Assembly elections were held on 23rd, however, after few days Mankotia levelled corruption charges against Himachal CM Virbhadra Singh and introduced an audio CD which created ripples in the State. Looking at the other news: Satiwala Residents blocked National Highway in an agitation against opening of liquor vend, there was also a protest march in Paonta and Nahan against the Dera Sacha Sauda Chief around the end of the month. A metling and tiring work worth 2.85 crores in
June: The prominent highlights of this month were that Prem Kumar Dhumal won the Himachal bye â€“ elections held on 2nd, Ram Lal Thakur resigned after losing, World Bank approved a US$220 million loan to Himachal Pradesh to support road network improvements, Government decided to set up Red Ribbon Club in every department for AIDS awareness, bus booking went online thus becoming second state after Karnatka to do so, the state also attracted Rs. 26535.84 crore investment in industrial sectors and Shimla was adjudged as â€˜Best Travel Destinationâ€™ by CNBC Awaaz.
July: MyHimachal sponsored second Health Mela, high court gave sanction to long awaited Jakhu Ropeway Project, tourism minister G.S. Bali was exposed on TV leading to his resignation and Major Chint Singhâ€™s son wrote an interesting article for MyHimachal.
August: Rain played havoc in the State causing a damage of over Rs. 1000 crore including collapse of a few bridges also. There was a heart-throbbing death of a four year critically unwell child whose ambulance was caught in the clash between BJP and Congress parties outside Vidhan Sabha, thus depriving him of medical treatment and resulting in his unattended death. Virbhadra sanctioned Rs. 2 lacs to the family of the child but High Court issued a notice seeking a reply from BJP and Congress over the death during the rallies organized on August 29. BJP MLA Rajiv Bindal was arrested over alleged irregularities in recruitments. Vijay Kumar won Arjuna Award â€“ 2006 for shooting. SJVNL reported record profit of Rs 732.71 crore in the state. And, even blind protested – seeking 1% reservation quota.
September: BJP observed a â€œBlack Dayâ€ to mark Vidhan Sabha violence and death of the above mentioned child. State Government earmarked Rs. 31.50 crore for the development of tribal communities moreover, India Today declared Himachal as the best state in poverty reduction in the country.
October: A new linseed â€˜Bhagsuâ€™ was developed by Palampur Agri.University. Union Finance Mininster P. Chidambram launched â€œAam Admi Bima Yojnaâ€ and announced setting up a central university, an IIT and taking up the Bhanupali-Bilaspur railway line project in the state. HRTC was conferred the best productivity award for 2005-2006. Swan River Integrated Watershed Management Project was also inaugurated. Dr. Sudarshan Kumar Vatsyayan, member of MyHimachal, brought pride to Himachal as the young scientist won the prestigious first Safran and French Embassy Award 2007. As the year was ending so was the tenure of Virbhadra government moreover, an announcement of early elections incouraged Dhumal to ask for dissolution of government.
November: The Palampur Welfare and Environment Protection Forum demanded complete ban on the sale of oxytocin drug in the state. On the other hand First Phase of Assembly elections were held for 3 constituencies. There was lot of announcements and meeting for the elections. BJP announced Dhumal as their CM candidature and total 435 candidates filed nominations for second phase of Vidhan Sabha elections.
December: State received seasons first snowfall. After many expels-rebelsâ€¦allegations, promises and rallies the second phase assembly elections were held peacefully on 19th. The very next day of election polling a big disaster gutted the Mohani
After refreshing all the memories of Himachal Pradesh here, it’s time to say Good-bye to ‘Year 2007’ …
…Wish you a very Happy New Year â€“ 2008!
(Photo by Himanshu Khagta)