Chitleen K Sethi

Chitleen K Seth was part of Hindustan Times’ nationwide network of correspondents that brings news, analysis and information to its readers. She no longer works with the Hindustan Times.

Articles by Chitleen K Sethi

Rape accused Bishop Franco Mulakkal and the power he wields over Christians in Punjab

Jalandhar Bishop Franco Mulakkal, who is accused of raping a Kerala nun, is among the most powerful Christians in Punjab. Wooed by political parties across the board, the 54-year-old bishop commands great spiritual influence over Catholic Christians in the state.

In June, a nun in Kerala had alleged that the Jalandhar-based bishop Franco Mulakkal had raped her 13 times between 2014 and 2016 during his visits to the southern state.(Reuters)
In June, a nun in Kerala had alleged that the Jalandhar-based bishop Franco Mulakkal had raped her 13 times between 2014 and 2016 during his visits to the southern state.(Reuters)
Updated on Sep 22, 2018 09:40 AM IST
Chandigarh | By

1,170 primary schools in Punjab running with single teacher

The comptroller and auditor general’s performance audit of the Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan (SSA), Punjab, has found that from 2011-2016, over Rs 1,350 crore meant for the implementation of the scheme was not released while at least Rs15 crore was spent in excess for purchasing uniforms and books. It also revealed that 1,170 primary schools were running with a single teacher in the state.

The CAG has pointed out that a sum of Rs 1,350 crore was not released for the Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan from 2011 to 2016.(HT Representative Image)
The CAG has pointed out that a sum of Rs 1,350 crore was not released for the Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan from 2011 to 2016.(HT Representative Image)
Updated on Mar 30, 2017 10:22 AM IST
Hindustan Times, Chandigarh | By, Chandigarh

Bonhomie gives way to rancour, session ends with AAP MLAs’ slogans against speaker

The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) legislators, who had staged a walkout on the second day of the session, once again protested and stormed the well of the House and raised slogans against the speaker in the last 10 minutes of the session.

AAP’s Sukhpal Khaira speaks in the Punjab Vidhan Sabha on Wednesday, March 29.(Keshav Singh/HT)
AAP’s Sukhpal Khaira speaks in the Punjab Vidhan Sabha on Wednesday, March 29.(Keshav Singh/HT)
Updated on Mar 30, 2017 08:26 AM IST
Hindustan Times, Chandigarh | By, Chandigarh

Akalis to oppose legislation on CPS appointments by Congress

Punjab’s former chief minister Parkash Singh Badal was talking to mediapersons after taking oath as an MLA in the office of the assembly speaker on Monday afternoon. Accompanied by his son and former deputy chief minister Sukhbir Singh Badal — who also took oath in the speaker’ room — Badal said his government had accepted the “fatwa” of the courts and removed all CPSes.

Former Punjab chief minister Parkash Singh Badal and his son Sukhbir Singh Badal talking to mediapersons after taking oath in the office of the assembly speaker on Monday afternoon.(Keshav Singh/HT)
Former Punjab chief minister Parkash Singh Badal and his son Sukhbir Singh Badal talking to mediapersons after taking oath in the office of the assembly speaker on Monday afternoon.(Keshav Singh/HT)
Updated on Mar 27, 2017 11:13 PM IST
Hindustan Times, Chandigarh | By

Disunited colours of Punjab assembly: From Akali blues to festive hues

Congress MLAs have long given up the tradition of wearing white ‘pagris’ and on Friday they had chosen more “sacred” colours for their headgear. Chief minister Captain Amarinder Singh wore a beige ‘pagri’, a shift from his favourite light pink or light blue. There were others who completed the palette — Sukhjinder Randhawa chose light peach, Rana Gurmeet Sodhi chose bright pink, Pargat Singh donned dark purple and Balbir Sidhu chose magenta. Charanjit Channi sported a red ‘pagri’ and some even wore orange.

Minister Rana Gurjit Singh and other MLAs in the Punjab Vidhan Sabha in Chandigarh on Friday, March 24.(Keshav Singh/HT)
Minister Rana Gurjit Singh and other MLAs in the Punjab Vidhan Sabha in Chandigarh on Friday, March 24.(Keshav Singh/HT)
Updated on Mar 24, 2017 10:40 PM IST
Hindustan Times, Chandigarh | By, Chandigarh

15th Punjab Vidhan Sabha: Phoolka is Oppn leader, Khaira AAP’s chief whip

Aam Aadmi Party leader Harvinder Singh Phoolka, who won the Punjab assembly seat from Dakha, has been chosen as the leader of opposition in the 15th Vidhan Sabha. Sukhpal Singh Khaira, state legislator from Bholath, will be the party’s chief whip.

HS Phoolka(HT File)
HS Phoolka(HT File)
Updated on Mar 16, 2017 12:18 AM IST
Hindustan Times | By, Chandigarh

Kejriwal to meet AAP MLAs today to pick leader of Oppn: Phoolka, Sandhu, Khaira frontrunners

A day before Capt Amarinder Singh takes oath as Punjab chief minister on March 16, Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) convener and Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal will meet his party’s newly elected 20 legislators and senior leaders in Delhi on Wednesday to select the leader of opposition in the Punjab assembly.

Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal(HT File Photo)
Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal(HT File Photo)
Updated on Mar 14, 2017 10:19 PM IST
Hindustan Times, Chandigarh | By, Chandigarh

AAP goes into introspection mode, to decide on leader of Oppn after Holi

A day after facing a crushing defeat in the Punjab assembly elections, the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) on Sunday decided to hold a meeting of its MLAs after Holi to finalise the leader of Opposition in the Vidhan Sabha. The name will be announced before March 16, the day the chief minister will be sworn in.

The name will be announced before March 16, the day the chief minister will be sworn in.(HT File Photo)
The name will be announced before March 16, the day the chief minister will be sworn in.(HT File Photo)
Updated on Mar 12, 2017 11:46 PM IST
Hindustan Times, Chandigarh | By, Chandigarh

Punjab poll results: No CM face, ‘radical link’ did AAP in

The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) party appears to have lost a winning battle in Punjab, and the reasons are not difficult to assess.

The party, which made its Punjab assembly polls debut, came in second. Punjab was the only state in the country from where the Arvind Kejriwal-led party had won four Lok Sabha seats mopping up a 24.4% vote share.(Illustration by Daljeet Kaur Sandhu/HT)
The party, which made its Punjab assembly polls debut, came in second. Punjab was the only state in the country from where the Arvind Kejriwal-led party had won four Lok Sabha seats mopping up a 24.4% vote share.(Illustration by Daljeet Kaur Sandhu/HT)
Updated on Mar 12, 2017 04:49 PM IST
Hindustan Times, Chandigarh | By, Chandigarh

In a first, new Punjab House will have divided Opposition

For the first time, the new Punjab assembly will have a two-pronged Opposition with the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) sharing the benches with their bête noir, the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD).

This is the first time since 1997 that Akali leader Parkash Singh Badal will not be the leader of the Opposition in the assembly.(HT File)
This is the first time since 1997 that Akali leader Parkash Singh Badal will not be the leader of the Opposition in the assembly.(HT File)
Updated on Mar 12, 2017 04:38 PM IST
Hindustan Times, Chandigarh | By, Chandigarh

Assembly elections 2017: Arvind Kejriwal’s national ambitions hit speedbreaker

The Aam Aadmi Party’s national ambitions have taken a huge hit as the party failed to match its own expectations in Punjab and drew a blank in Goa.

File photo of Delhi Chief Minister and AAP convener Arvind Kejriwal during an election campaign in Amritsar .(PTI Photo)
File photo of Delhi Chief Minister and AAP convener Arvind Kejriwal during an election campaign in Amritsar .(PTI Photo)
Updated on Mar 11, 2017 11:59 PM IST
Hindustan Times, New Delhi/Chandigarh/Panaji | ByJatin Gandhi/Chitleen K Sethi/Nida Khan

Punjab assembly election results: How Kejriwal lost AAP’s winning plot

A host of reasons counteracted the hype over the Aam Aadmi Party’s (AAP) chances of winning the 2017 assembly elections in Punjab — the foremost being infighting, losing its campaign novelty as it started too early, and lack of knowledge about local traditions and nuances.

Aam Admi Party chief Arvind Kejriwal at a road show ahead of the February 4 Punjab assembly elections in Jalandhar.(AFP file photo)
Aam Admi Party chief Arvind Kejriwal at a road show ahead of the February 4 Punjab assembly elections in Jalandhar.(AFP file photo)
Updated on Mar 13, 2017 01:28 AM IST
Hindustan Times | By, Chandigarh

Punjab govt asks panchayats to turn common land into groves

In a major policy decision, the Punjab government has asked village panchayats across the state to use one-third of the village common land (shamlat land) for planting trees. The state has around 1.5 lakh acres of village common land, a large part of which is used for cultivation.

The state has around 1.5 lakh acres of village common land, a large part of which is used for cultivation.(HT File Photo)
The state has around 1.5 lakh acres of village common land, a large part of which is used for cultivation.(HT File Photo)
Updated on Feb 18, 2017 11:12 AM IST
Hindustan Times, Chandigarh | By, Chandigarh

Punjab vigilance bureau begins inquiry against five panchayats for embezzlement

The Punjab vigilance bureau (VB) has initiated five separate probes into allegations of embezzlement of gram panchayat funds by village sarpanches and panches across Punjab. While two of these probes pertain to panchayats in Ferozepur district, one each is from SAS Nagar, Amritsar and Patiala districts.

Updated on Feb 16, 2017 04:00 PM IST
Hindustan Times, Chandigarh | By, Chandigarh

Punjab elections 2017: AAP launches drive to ‘protect’ EVMs till counting day

Punjab has voted already, and the results are a month away, but the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) is still on the warpath. The party has launched a statewide ‘AAP protects EVMs’ drive as part of which 15,000 volunteers of the party will keep a watch on strongrooms where the electronic voting machines (EVMs) have been kept till the counting day, March 11.

AAP Candidate Nabha Gurdev Singh Mann (centre) with supporters camping outside a 'strongroom' where Electronic Voting Machines have been stored in Patiala on Monday.(HT Photo)
AAP Candidate Nabha Gurdev Singh Mann (centre) with supporters camping outside a 'strongroom' where Electronic Voting Machines have been stored in Patiala on Monday.(HT Photo)
Updated on Feb 07, 2017 10:26 AM IST
Hindustan Times, Chandigarh | By

AAP’s Kejriwal says ‘spineless’ Election Commission has surrendered to PM Modi

He may be desperate to lead the nation into a new world “jahan gham bhi na ho, aansoo bhi na ho” but Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) chief Arvind Kejriwal instead of posting pictures of AAP voters bringing in the much promised revolution in Punjab on polling day, ranted against the Election Commission, blaming, you guessed it, Prime Minister Narendra Modi for its “biased functioning”.

Aam Aadmi Party national convener and Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal addresses an election rally ahead of the Punjab assembly elections at Shahkot in Jalandhar on February 1, 2017.(PTI)
Aam Aadmi Party national convener and Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal addresses an election rally ahead of the Punjab assembly elections at Shahkot in Jalandhar on February 1, 2017.(PTI)
Updated on Feb 06, 2017 08:53 AM IST
Hindustan Times, Chandigarh | By

Who will win Punjab polls? Here is what astrologers, and a fortune-telling parrot, have to say

The nail biting Punjab election finale today has most poll experts and punters setting their odds on who will win. With the rapidly changing ground situation, a thrilling contest among SAD-BJP, Congress and the newbie AAP is on the cards.

Fortune-telling parrot Ganga Ram at work in Shimla.(Deepak Sansta/HT Photo)
Fortune-telling parrot Ganga Ram at work in Shimla.(Deepak Sansta/HT Photo)
Updated on Feb 04, 2017 12:28 PM IST
Hindustan Times | By

Punjabi-vs-outsider issue not on voters’ minds: AAP’s Sanjay Singh

An interview with Sanjay Singh, the AAP’s Punjab affairs in-charge, on poll eve in the state. He says: “People of Punjab have given overwhelming response to our campaigning, even in the absence of a CM face. They want to bid good riddance to a government that promotes drugs and goondaism.”

Sanjay Singh, the AAP’s Punjab affairs in-charge.(HT File Photo)
Sanjay Singh, the AAP’s Punjab affairs in-charge.(HT File Photo)
Updated on Feb 06, 2017 08:53 AM IST
Hindustan Times, Chandigarh | By

Punjab assembly elections: Campaigning comes to a high-voltage end in state

Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi on Thursday accused AAP chief Arvind Kejriwal of allegedly helping “forces” seeking to push Punjab back into militancy, prompting a sharp retort from the Delhi chief minister in a high-voltage end to campaigning in the state.

Congress leader and former Union Cabinet Minister Anand Sharma during a road show for the Punjab assembly elections in Amritsar on Thursday. Voting will be held on February 4 for 117 assembly seats in the state, once the country’s food bowl but reeling under growing unemployment and drug abuse among its youth.(PTI)
Congress leader and former Union Cabinet Minister Anand Sharma during a road show for the Punjab assembly elections in Amritsar on Thursday. Voting will be held on February 4 for 117 assembly seats in the state, once the country’s food bowl but reeling under growing unemployment and drug abuse among its youth.(PTI)
Updated on Feb 03, 2017 06:59 AM IST
Hindustan Times, Chandigarh | By

Punjab elections 2017: Badal bahu plays emotional card, gets trolled

In an unusual move four days before Punjab goes to the polls, Union minister and Badal bahu Harsimrat Kaur Badal made a desperate appeal to voters to consider her family’s “sacrifice” during the decade-long Akali rule only to be trolled on social media by Aam Aadmi Party supporters, who wanted people to give the ruling family “much-needed rest for the next 10 years”.

Union minister Harsimart Kaur Badal(HT Photo)
Union minister Harsimart Kaur Badal(HT Photo)
Updated on Feb 01, 2017 12:32 AM IST
Hindustan Times, Chandigarh | By

Fake news, letter bombs, sex tapes: All is (un)fair in Punjab poll arena

With barely five days to go for the high octane assembly polls, campaigning has touched its crescendo in Punjab. Parties in the fray are not leaving any chance to pin each other down. The result: Barbs are flying thick and fast, and so are allegations.

Two fake intelligence bureau reports designed to look like top secret e mails sent by senior IB officers to their headquarters are doing the rounds on Facebook and WhatsApp. One of the reports shows the Congress winning 90 seats out of the 117 seats. While the AAP’s score is 16, 11 seats go to SAD-BJP combine.(HT File Photos)
Two fake intelligence bureau reports designed to look like top secret e mails sent by senior IB officers to their headquarters are doing the rounds on Facebook and WhatsApp. One of the reports shows the Congress winning 90 seats out of the 117 seats. While the AAP’s score is 16, 11 seats go to SAD-BJP combine.(HT File Photos)
Updated on Jan 31, 2017 09:35 AM IST
Hindustan Times, Chandigarh | ByChitleen K Sethi, Chandigarh

‘Election-charged’, SAD’s defending champ Sukhbir Badal is going all out

He might not be the favourite, but is still the defending champion in what is fast becoming the most thrilling electoral match in Punjab’s history, and Shiromani Akali Dal president Sukhbir Singh Badal is giving it his best shot.

Shiromani Akali Dal president Sukhbir Singh Badal on a chopper on Saturday.(HT Photo)
Shiromani Akali Dal president Sukhbir Singh Badal on a chopper on Saturday.(HT Photo)
Updated on Jan 28, 2017 09:55 PM IST
Hindustan Times | By, Chamkaur Sahib

SAD candidate Harinder trying hard to be voters’ Pal in Sanour

Nearly at an hour’s drive from Patiala, this non-descript village, part of Sanaur assembly segment, bears a festive look. It’s election time and the walls of the houses are splashed with Akali blue-yellow posters bearing list of achievements accomplished in the past three months.

Harinder Pal Singh Chandumajra, the SAD-­BJP candidate from Sanaur, has been focusing on hyper local development works to woo voters.(Bharat Bhushan/HT Photo)
Harinder Pal Singh Chandumajra, the SAD-­BJP candidate from Sanaur, has been focusing on hyper local development works to woo voters.(Bharat Bhushan/HT Photo)
Updated on Jan 23, 2017 10:55 AM IST
Hindustan Times, Auja (Patiala) | By, Auja (patiala)

Punjab polls: Can Satbir Singh be a ‘Khatra’ to Congress bastion?

Six months ago when 34-year-old Satbir Singh Khatra was made the halqa in-charge of Patiala Rural, replacing Kuldeep Kaur Tohra, the daughter of Akali stalwart late Gurcharan Singh Tohra, it was clear that the winds of change had begun to blow in the jathedar-driven party.

HARPING ON THE GOODWILL AMONG THE YOUTH: Satbir Singh Khatra is trying to strike a rapport with the urban voters of his segment.(Bharat Bhushan/HT Photo)
HARPING ON THE GOODWILL AMONG THE YOUTH: Satbir Singh Khatra is trying to strike a rapport with the urban voters of his segment.(Bharat Bhushan/HT Photo)
Updated on Jan 10, 2017 10:58 AM IST
Hindustan Times, Patiala | By, Patiala

Pushed to the margins, Simranjit Mann carrying legacy of a lost cause

Simranjit Singh Mann, 71, has a skip in his step. As he settles in a chair to address a press conference on Friday, announcing the first set of candidates his party Shiromani Akali Dal (Amritsar) will field in the coming assembly polls, his eyes gleam with hope.

Simranjit Singh Mann(HT File Photo)
Simranjit Singh Mann(HT File Photo)
Updated on Jan 01, 2017 10:34 AM IST
Hindustan Times | By, Chandigarh

Wanted nominees: Smaller outfits facing crunch of candidates

As the poll fever catches up in Punjab despite cash crunch, political outfits are facing another crunch—of candidates. A large number of parties and outfits are interested in fielding candidates in the high-stakes polls. But the hunt for suitable candidates is becoming quite an exercise, at least for the new and lesser-known outfits.

As the poll fever catches up in Punjab despite cash crunch, political outfits are facing another crunch—of candidates.(HT Representative Image)
As the poll fever catches up in Punjab despite cash crunch, political outfits are facing another crunch—of candidates.(HT Representative Image)
Updated on Dec 24, 2016 11:04 AM IST
Hindustan Times | By, Chandigarh

Punjab polls: AAP asks for donations, but donors to remain incognito

The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) in Punjab has made a fresh appeal for donations to contest the forthcoming assembly polls. However, unlike earlier, this time the party will be keeping its list of donors a “top secret”. The AAP, which had taken a high moral stand on the issue of maintaining absolute transparency regarding its finances, has decided, for the time being, to keep all the information guarded.

AAP supremo and Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal(HT File Photo)
AAP supremo and Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal(HT File Photo)
Updated on Dec 22, 2016 10:28 AM IST
Hindustan Times | By, Chandigarh

AAP's naming CM face in Goa may reignite demand for same in Punjab

The declaration of the chief ministerial candidate by the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) in Goa that goes to polls almost at the same time as Punjab has brought the focus back on the big question – who will be party’s CM candidate in Punjab?

Arvind Kejriwal(HT Photo)
Arvind Kejriwal(HT Photo)
Updated on Dec 20, 2016 02:05 PM IST
Hindustan Times | By, Chandigarh

Man in white: Beant Singh gave life for peace, his legacy lives on

Hard-working, straight-talking CM who brought militancy to an end in the state met with a violent end. But his family continues to thrive in the business of politics

Credited with ending two decades of Khalistani militancy in Punjab, Beant Singh paid the ultimate price for taking an unambiguous stand, he was killed in an assassination plan meticulously executed by the separatist group Babbar Khalsa International.(HT File Photo)
Credited with ending two decades of Khalistani militancy in Punjab, Beant Singh paid the ultimate price for taking an unambiguous stand, he was killed in an assassination plan meticulously executed by the separatist group Babbar Khalsa International.(HT File Photo)
Updated on Dec 16, 2016 09:43 AM IST
Hindustan Times | By, Chandigarh

6,000 ‘backdoor’ admissions in Punjab’s pvt polytechnics

In what smacks of a case of backdoor admission of thousands of students in Punjab’s private polytechnics, the Punjab State Technical Education Board has in the past fortnight “updated” its students’ database, adding “missing entries” of nearly 6,000 students.

HT Image
HT Image
Updated on Dec 13, 2016 12:23 PM IST
Hindustan Times | By, Chandigarh
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