(d) Panchayati Raj

Panchayati Raj is a three-tier system of administration for the development of rural areas, with the Gram Panchayat at the village level, the Panchayat Samiti at the block level and Zila Parishad at the district level. It has been introduced to provide a bold and imaginative leadership for all round development of the village community. As the economic uplift of the community cannot be entrusted to any other organization than the one represented by the village people themselves, the role of the Panchayati Raj institution in the rebuilding of rural India becomes inevitably important. The Panchayati Raj Movement was launched in the State on 2 October 1961. 

Three tiers of the Panchayati Raj the Gram Panchayat, the Panchayat Samiti, and the Zila Parishad are described below:

Gram Panchayats. – Forming a part of Indian customs and traditions, the institution of gram panchayats in the villages is as old as Indian History. Panchayat system is well entrenched in the very mind and thinking of Indian villagers. “God lives in five” is still a well admitted doctrine of the village community especially in the Punjab. In the olden days panchayats had been wielding a great influence upon the village life economic, social and political. These were full-fledged miniature auto-nomous republics. The details of the working of the panchayats in the villages of this district are not clearly known for want of records, but the panchayats in the villages of this district did exercise sufficient revenue, judicial, municipal and administrative functions.

The coming of the Muslims tended to upset this age-old system of panchayats as they believed in the unitary form of government. The Muslim rulers were essentially urban by nature. Their main interest in the rural sphere lay in the collection of land revenue and ensuring general peace. They did not bother much about the manner in which rural administration was running. Akabar, the Great Mughal Emperor, introduced changes in the old Indian malguzari system which sufficiently weakened this fibre of panchayati system. But the British rule in Indian gave a death blow to the panchayats by introducing a number of middle-men like Rajas, jagirdars, malik-i-alaha and maliki-i-adna the position was worse in the provincial states. The present Sangrur District comprised 4 sets of villages, (villages belonging to the erstwhile princely states of jind, Patiala, Nabha & Malerktola), previously each being under the rule of a Raja. In spite of various onslaughts by the administration of these intermediary rulers, the conventional panchayats continued to function and took decisions based mostly on morality. 

The first step for the restitution of the panchayat system in Sangrur District was taken in 1910 when panchayats were organized under the guidance of Mr. Young, the then Settlement Commissioner of the Patiala State. Some influential persons who had ingratiated themselves with the authorities could find place on these panchayats through nominations. These panchayats were given powers to entertain certain civil cases only. Nothing was being done towards the development of the villages. Hence the work of development of village was got done by the State officials through the agency of village headman. Later, in the year 1943, another legislation was brought on statute vide which these panchayats were required to perform in their areas certain municipal functions also. In 1948, panchayat elections were held in the Nabha State. These panchayats had to perform municipal, judicial, and revenue functions. On the formation of PEPSU in 1948, PEPSU Panchayat Raj Act was passed in 1951.  The existing panchayats kept functioning under the parent Acts and the new Act of 1951. Under the PEPSU Panchayat Raj Act, Niyaya panchayats were constituted separately for the group of 5 or 6 villages.

On the merger of PEPSU in the Punjab on 1 November 1956, the provisions of the Punjab Gram Panchayat Act, 1952, became applicable to the Panchayats of this district. The PEPSU Panchayat Raj Act, 1951 was repealed by the Gram Panchayat Act, 1952, which was amended in 1960. Under the act, a gram sabha may be constituted for any village or group of contiguous villages with a population of not less and 500[P1]  and gram panchayat is elected for the gram sabha area and not for each village. The government, of course, has the power to relax it. Every male or female who is entered as a voter on electoral roll of the State Vidhan Sabha is a member of the gram sabha. These members of the gram sabha elect the members of the panchayats from amongst themselves. If no woman is elected as a panch, the woman candidate securing the highest number of votes amongst the women candidates in that election, is co-opted by the panchayat as a panch, and where no such women candidates are available a woman is co-opted as panch by the competent authority. Similarly, it has been provided that every panchayat shall have on or two members of the Scheduled Casts, depending upon the ratio of their population in the village.

The number of panches and the mode of election of Sarpanch of a panchayat has been has been changing from time to time. In 1960, a gram sabha could elect 5 to 9 panches was raised from 5 to 11, but the mode of election of sarpanch was made indirect, i.e. the panches of the panchayat were to elect the sarpanch from amongst themselves. In 1972, election of the sarpanch in addition of electing the panches, the number of panches remaining the same. The election of sarpanch was again made indirect in 1978 with no change as to the number of panches. From 1982, the election of sarpanch has again been made direct without altering the total number of panches. This number could go up to thirteen in a panchayat which filed to elect two women panches. They would be co-opted in that case.

Previously under the Punjab Panchayat Act, 1952, the Panches elected the Sarpanch from among themselves. Later on from June 1972, this mode of indirect election was changed into a direct one. Accordingly, the panches as well as the Sarpanches were elected directly by the people. This system of direct election continued till the middle of June 1978 when by an Ordinance of the Punjab Government, the mode of election was made indirect and on 27 September 1982 again made direct. The panchayat may remove a Sarpanch by the motion of no confidence passed, by at least two-thirds of the panches. No such motion can be sponsored without the previous permission of the Director, rural Development and Panchayats, Punjab, Chandigarh. Members of a panchayat may be removed by the Government on specified grounds. Removal entails disqualification for re-election for the period up to five years.

Under the Act, gram panchayat is to meet at least once a month at a place within the gram panchayat area. Majority of the panches for the time being holding office form quorum. All decisions of a panchayat are taken by majority and, when the voting in equality, the Sarpanch has an additional or casting vote.

At the district headquarters, District Development and Panchayat Officer co-ordinates and supervises the working of the panchayats in the district.

In 1978, there were 681 panchayats in the Sangrur District with a total membership of 5,321.


Under the Punjab Gram Panchayat Act, 1952, the panchayats have been vested with judicial and executive powers besides being an important agency for rural development. On the criminal side, they have been given powers to try certain minor offences like petty thefts, hurt, affray and commission of public nuisance. They are under the control of the District Magistrate, who can hear appeals against their orders, and transfer cases from one panchayat to another. On the civil and revenue side, the panchayats have been given powers to try civil and revenue judicial cases within certain pecuniary limits, and in respect of these cases they are under the control of the District Judge and the Collector, respectively.

Besides the judicial work, the panchayats look to the requirements of their respective areas in regard to agriculture, education, animal husbandry, public health and sanitation including water supply, works of public utility, games and sports, industries, medical health and relief to the poor. They are expected to arrange 50 per cent of the cost of local development works sponsored by the Development Department, either in cash, kind or labour, and with the help of the concerned departments, they have been responsible for starting a number of single-teacher primary schools, construction of new school buildings, and repairing and remodeling of old ones, provision of drinking water arrangements in the schools, raising of aided libraries, provision of community listening sets, construction and repairing of panchayat ghars, building of dispensaries, planting of trees, arranging playgrounds and children parks, construction village approach roads, repairing and leveling of public paths, construction of drains and culverts, payment of streets, construction, repair and remodeling of wells culverts, payment of streets, construction, repair and remodeling of wells for drinking water, and remodeling repairing of ponds.

Sources of Revenue

The main sources of income of the panchayats are: grant-in-aid from Government, a percentage of land revenue collection, donation, taxes, duties, cesses and fees, income from village common lands, and sale proceeds of dust, dirt and dung, etc. The fines and penalties which the panchayats impose are also transferred to their funds.

The income of the panchayats in the Sangrur District, during 1973-74 to 1977-78, is given below:

Source of income






1. Grants from Government






2. Voluntary Contributions






3. House Tax












(Source: Director, Rural Development and Panchayats, Punjab)


During 1977-78, the panchayats in the district constructed 30 new school buildings and repaired and extended 60 existing ones, provided 30 playgrounds and 15 children parks, established 30 libraries, constructed 35 panchayat ghars, provided street lights in 45 villages, constructed 200 culverts, made 30 km drains pucca, paved 25 km of streets installed 85 hand-pumps, and disinfected 85 drinking water wells, etc.

With regard to the judicial work, during 1977-78, the panchayats in the district decided 5 revenue cases,

Panchayat Samitis. – Constituted under the Punjab Panchayat Samitis and Zila Parishads Act, 1961, the panchayat samitis form the second tier of the Panchayati Raj. This tier of local self government acts as a bridge between the zila parishads and village panchayats.

There are ten panchayat samitis in the district, i.e. one in each block. According to the Punjab Panchayat Samitis and Zila Parishads Act, 1961, each panchayat samiti has 16 members elected by the panches and sarpanches from amongst themselves, two members elected by the co-operative societies; and on member elected by the market committees. Besides, every MLA whose constituency falls, in part of in full, in the block works o the panchayat samiti as an associate member[P2] . Two women interested in social work and four persons belonging to the Scheduled Castes, if not elected otherwise, are co-opted as members. The Sub-Divisional Officer (Civil) and the Block Development and Panchayat Officer of the block, work as ex-officio members without the right to vote. The Chairman and the Vice-Chairman are elected from amongst the elected members and their term of office is five years.

The Panchayat Samitis provide and make arrangements for the requirements of the area under their jurisdiction in respect of agriculture, animal husbandry, fisheries, health and rural sanitation, communications, social education, co-operation and such other miscellaneous work as development of cottage and small-scale industries and other local development activities. The panchayat samiti is also the agent of the Government for the formulation and execution of rural development programmes.

The main sources of income of a panchayat samiti are: local rate, fees derived from schools and markets; fee from firs and shows; rents and profits accruing from properties vested in it; and such money and grants as Government may place at its disposal. Under section 65 of the Punjab Panchayat Samitis and Zila Parishads Act, 1961 (Punjab Act No. 3 of 1961) subject to the general direction and control of the Government, a panchayat Samiti may with the previous permission of the of the Zila Parishad concerned, impose any tax which the Legislature of the State has power to impose under the Constitution of India except the property subject to local rate. Besides, under section 66 of the Act, the Government may empower any Panchayat Samiti to impose any tax without such permission.

Zila Parishad—Prior to the formation of zila parishads in the State, the functions of zila parishads were performed by district boards. The district boards used to attend to the development of villages in the same manner as the municipal committees looked after the development works in urban areas.

Since Sangrur District was a Princely State prior to the partition, the functions of the district boards were performed by the respective departments of the State. The Zila parishad, Sangrur, was constituted on 1 April 1962, under the Punjab Panchayat Samitis and Zila Parishads Act, 1961.

A Zila Parishad comprises Chairman of every panchayat samiti, two members elected by each panchayat samiti, all MPs and MLAs, representing the district or any part thereof, and the Deputy Commissioner. Two women and five members belonging to the Scheduled Castes, if not elected otherwise, are co-opted as members. The MPs, MLAs, and the Deputy Commissioner do not have the right to vote. A zila parishad has a Chairman and a Vice-Chairman, elected by the primary members Charimen of the panchayat Samitis and co-opted members, from amongst themselves, for five years. The Secretary of the Zila Parishad is appointed by the Government.  

The Zila Parishad, Sangrur, was superseded by the State Government in 1969 and the Deputy Commissioner was appointed as Administrator to perform its functions till its reconstitution.

A zila parishad consolidates and co-ordinates the plans prepared by the panchayat samitis, examines and approves the budgets of the panchayat samitis and advises the Government in regard to panchayats and panchayat samitis and keeps a watch over agricultural production programmes and construction works.

All the roads previously maintained by the zila parishads have been transferred to the Public Works Department and hence no road is being maintained by the Zila Parishad, Sangrur.

The Zila Parishad, Sangrur, does not impose any taxes. The main source of income are State Government funds allotted to it and the local rate. The income and expenditure of the Zila Parishad, Sangrur, during 1973-74 to 1977-78, is given hereunder:



Expenditure (Rs)
















(Source: Secretary, Zila parishad, Sangrur)


Income and Expenditure of Municipalities in Sangrur District, 1973-74 to 1977-78

Name of Municipality















Tahsil Sangrur






1. Sangrur














2. Bhawa-nigarh







3 Longowal




















Tahsil Barnala






1. Barnala














2. Tapa














3 Dhanaula














4 Bhadaur














Tahsil Malerkotla






1. Malerkotla




















2. Ahmed-garh














3. Dhuri














Tahsil Sunam






1. Sunam














2. Lehragaga




















(Statistical Abstracts of Punjab, 1974-78)







Historical Background


Literacy and Educational Standards


General Education


Professional and Technical Education


Physical Education


Cultivation of Fine Arts


Oriental Schools and Colleges


Education for the Handicapped


Adult Literacy, social Education and Measures for the diffusion of Culture among the masses


Cultural and Literary Societies and Periodicals


Libraries, Museums, etc


(a) Historical Background

The Sangrur District now comprises the territories of erstwhile Princely States of Patiala, Jind, Nabha and Malerkotla; besides some villages from the former British territory. In these princely States, prior to 1860, indigeno’s system of education was in vogue. Under the ingigenous system, pathshalas, chathshalas, dharamshalas and maktabs were being run in these Princely States. In the pathshalas, religious education relating to Hindu religion was imparted to the boys of Brahman community. In the chathshalas or Mahajani reading schools, Lande and accounts were taught to the boys of the trading community. Gurmukhi or Punjabi was taught by the bhai or priest of a Gurdwara to the children of the Sikh community in Gurmukhi schools which were generally located in dharmshlas/Gurudwara. The maktab was the vernacular, Persian or Arabic school for the Muslim boys. These were to two kinds – the one where only the Quran was taught, the other where Arabic was taught. Female education looked upon with disfavour. Girls used to learn embroidery, sewing, trouser strings etc. at home from other women. Women were taught only Gurmukhi, Nagri, Sanskrit or Arabic according to their religion. Only religious books were taught to the girls. 

In 1860, Maharaja Narinder Singh of Patiala State opened first State School at Patiala. Maharaja Mohinder Singh in 1870, created a regular organized Education Department under the Director. The teachers in the indigenous schools were taken in the service of the State. New schools were opened at Barnala, Hadiaya, Moonak, and Sunam. Similarly, until 1889 indigenous system of education continued in the Jind State. Among others a school was being maintained by the State at Sangrur where Persian, Sanskrit and Gurmukhi were taught. In 1889, the Jind State adopted the Punjab Education system and remodeled the schools then existing. A Supervising and Inspecting Officer called the Munsarim of schools was appointed by the State. In 1891, primary schools were opened among others at Sangrur, Dialpura (tahsil Malerkotla) and Badru Khan (tahsil Sangrur). In 1894, the Primary School, Sangrur, was raised to a high school and a boarding house was added to it. On 10 November 1899, foundation stone of Diamond Jublilee College, close to Sangrur, was laid. In Nabha State, the modern education system was introduced by Raja Bharpur Singh in 1863 by opening a school in Nabha Tahsil with one teacher for English and another for Persian and Arabic. Schools were opened in 1873, among others, at Dhanaula (now in Tahsil Barnala). The education system virtually on these very lines were going on it the Princely State of Malerkotla also. On the eve of the formation of PEPSU was merged in the Punjab and the educational pattern of Punjab became applicable to the Sangrur District.

After the partition of the country in 1947, the national Government gave priority to the expansion of education with an avowed policy of arranging free and compulsory education. The number of educational institutions increased rapidly and the Punjab Government took a bold step of provincialising the schools maintained by the local bodies on 1 October 1957. This step was a landmark in the post-independence history of education. Education has been made free in government schools up to the middle standard. To provide facilities for higher education, even the small towns and comparatively bigger villages such as, Mastuana, Sanghera, Sandaur, etc. have been given the privilege to have degree colleges. The compulsory Primary Education Act, 1960, was promulgated from 1 April 1961 in the entire district and a result of its implementation, a large number of schools have been opened with a view to providing a primary schools within a radius of about one kilometer and a half. The number of educational institutions in the Sangrur District as on 31 March 1978 included 10 colleges, 9 higher secondary schools, 141 high schools, 133 middle schools, and senior basic schools and 824 pre-primary/primary/junior basic schools.


(b) Literacy and Educational Standards

The Sangrur District is not only economically backward, educationly too, it is one of the most backward districts of the State. The literacy rate of the district, as per 1971 Census was 24.23 per cent (30.29 for males and 17.01 for females) as compared to 33.67 (40.38 for males and 25.90 for females) as compared to 33.67 (40.38 for males and 25.90 for females) of the Punjab State. The district was at the bottom in literacy among the 19 districts of the Punjab in 1961 when its literacy rate 18.6 per cent. However, the literacy rate has shown an increase of 5.63 per cent during 2961-71 decade[P3] .  This improvement has been achieved by opening more educational institutions especially in the rural areas and within short distances. Efforts have also been made for universalisation of primary education by maximum enrolment of students in schools. Balwadis are also being established in maximum villages under the ‘Bal Vikas programme’. As a result of the State initiative, the number of educational institutions. Is rapidly increasing in the district.


The following table shows the progress of school educational in the district since 1951-52:

Types of


Number of Institution













Primary/ pre-primary/ junior basic schools









Middle schools









High schools









Higher Second-ary schools










Educational Societies

Though educational like other subjects, is planned by the State, yet various educational societies and philanthropic endowments are also rendering valuable service in the field of education in the Sangrur District. The important among such societies are briefly described below:

Educational Societies Rendering Service in the Field of Education

The Arya Samaj Sangrur.—Arya Samaj, Sangrur, is reported to have been founded in or about A. D. 1926. The foundation of the Arya Samaj temple was laid in 1928 by Swami Swatantranand a veteran leader and saint of the Arya Samaj. Previously, its activities ere confined to congregations, performance of religious rites, conversations on vedic dharma and uplift of Scheduled Castes and depressed classes. But right from 1952, it took up the cause of female education and set up a primary girls school at Sangrur for propagation of Hindi. It is now a High School under the name of ‘Lajpat Rai Arya Kanya Vidyalaya’. Besides, it has started another institution under the name of Dayanand Mahila Mahavidyalala’ Sangrur.

Sri Guru Singh Sabha, Sangrur. – It was founded in 1922 by Sarvshri Prem Singh and Kashmira Singh. The foundation stone of Singh Sabha, Sangrur, was laid down by Sant Baba Attar Singh. The Sabha played a vital role in religious, revolutionary and educational fields. But it started taking keen interest in the field of education since 17 June 1954 when Maharani Satinder Kaur, wife of Maharaja Rajvir Singh of Jind donated Rs 1,000 for opening a girls school at Sangrur. The Singh Sabha, Sangrur, opened a primary school for girls at Dhuri Gate, Sangrur, in the premises of the Singh Sabha. The primary school has now been upgraded to high school and is housed in the premises of Shri Mokandi Singh Dharmshala, which was donated by the wife of Shri Mokand Singh for the school. There are now about 500 students of the school.

The school also imparts education in divinity to the students.

Women’s Education

During the reign of princes female education was virtually non-existent. It was not favoured by the parents of send their female wards to the schools. The girls used to learn cooking, sewing and embroidery from the other women. They also used to learn reading and writing from the indigenous institutions according to their religion. But after independence in 1947, the outlook of the parents has changed in favour of female education. The Compulsory Elementary Education Act, 1960, has also contributed towards the increase in female education as it has made obligatory on the parents to send their wards of the age-group of 6 and above to schools.

According to the 1971 Census, the literacy rate among females, as a percentage of the total population in the district, was 17.01 as against 25.90 for the State. As on 31 March 1978, there were as many as 23,906 girls (I to XI classes) studying in the district. College education among women also got impetus and a result thereof, there were 2 colleges exclusively for girls in the district in 1977-78. Besides, there are 5 Industrial Training School in which instruction various trade is given to the girls students.

Education of Scheduled Castes and Backward Class


According to the 1971 Census, Scheduled Castes formed 23.66 per cent[P4]  of district’s total population. The Schedule Castes and Backward Class students, whose parent’s annual income does not exceed Rs 6,000, are allowed free education up to the M. A. level. Free books, stipends, and scholarships exemption from tuition fees and reimbursement of examination including colleges under the various schemes sponsored by the State and Union Governments. Seats for them are reserved in various professional and technical institutions. To prepare them for IAS, IPS and other allied examination, Zonal Coaching Centre is functioning in the Punjabi University, Patiala, where free board and lodging are provided.

The financial assistance given to the students belonging to the Schedule Castes and other Backward Classes in the district, during 1973-74 to 1977-78, is given below:


Stipends (Rs)

Number of students benefited
















                     (Source: District Education Officers, Sangrur)

The number of Scheduled Castes and backward classes students in different Schools in the District, as on 31 March 1978 was as under;

Type of Institution

Number of

Scheduled Castes student

Backward Castes Students







Primary Schools







Middle Schools







High Schools







Higher Secondary Schools







Grand Total







(Source: District Education Officer, Sangrur)

Role of Local Bodies in the field of Education

Since October 1957, all schools maintained hitherto by the local bodies have been provincialized in the State. There was no educational institution controlled by any municipal committee/District Board in the Sangrur District before Provincialization.

Medium of Instruction

With a view to solving the language problem in the State, the Government worked out the Three-Language Formula to satisfy all sections of the people, which replaced the Sachar Formula of 1949. Under the Three-Language Formula, Punjabi has been made the first language and the medium of instruction in Government schools at al levels, while Hindi has been made compulsory from the sixth class. The privately managed schools have been given the option to retain Punjabi or Hindi as medium of instruction. The schools which adopt Hindi as the medium of instruction are required to teach Punjabi as a compulsory language. The solution evolved by the government has gone a long way in solving the language problems in the State. It has ensured compulsory instruction in Punjabi in all the schools and has enabled the Hindi medium schools to continue teaching through that medium and, as such, the entire school going population in the State has become conversant with both the languages. The status of
English language has also been recognized, as it is an international language.

Educational Set-up

With the re-organisation of educational set-up on 8 May 1963, the District Educational Officer is now the overall incharge of educational activities up to the high and higher secondary schools levels in the district. He functions under the Director of Public Instruction (Schools), Punjab, through the Circle Education Officer, Nabha (District Patiala). The District Education Officer, Sangrur, is assisted by 2 Deputy District Education Officers, 1 Science Supervisor, 1 Assistant Education Officer, 1 Block Education Officer, 1 Superintendent, 3 Head Clerks, 9 Assistants besides other Class III and Class IV staff.

The primary schools functions under the control of Block Education Officer, while the middle, high the higher secondary schools in the district are under the control of District Education Officer, Sangrur, through the Deputy District Education Officer, Sangrur.

(c) General Education

Pre-Primary Schools

Pre-Primary of nursery education is highly desirable for the physical emotional and intellectual development of children in the age group of 3—6 year. The objective of providing facilities for elementary education in all villages with a population of 500    has been achieved, now efforts are being made to provided these facilities in the villages having smaller population. A number of nursery and model schools (Government and private) are functioning in the District. Lady Circle Supervisors and Block Development authorities also run nursery schools or balwadis with the cooperation of villages Mahila Mandals and Panchayats. 


Primary and Basic Schools

Free primary education was introduced in the State during the Third Five-Year Plan (1961-66) in the age group of 6—7 years in 1961-62, and was extended to the age group of 6-8 in 1962-63, 8-9 in 1963-64, 9-10, in 1964-64 and 10-11 in 1965-66. As a step towards free and compulsory universalization of primary education, all revenue villages in the district have been provided with primary schools by 1976-77. Special incentives such as supply of free text books and mid-day meals are given to the children belonging to weaker sections of the society.

The total number of Primary/Basic Primary Schools, both Government and private, in the district, as on 30 September 1978, was 825 with 1,70,000 (95,000 boys, 75,000 girls) students. The number of teachers, as on 30 September 1978, in the schools was 3,442 (1,916 males, 1,526 females).

The details of educational institutions and students at primary stage in the district are given in Appendix I on page 356.

Secondary Schools

There is an all round expansion in the field of education in the district. The increase in the number of children/scholars in primary schools due to the introduction of compulsory education has encouraged the enrolment drive in the secondary schools. To attract more children to secondary schools in the age group of 14—17 years, middle and high schools have been provided within short distances and 28 primary schools were upgraded from primary to middle and 14 from middle to high during 1977-78. Besides, some new subjects such as music and dancing have been introduced in the some of the Government Girls High Schools. The teaching of domestic science and agriculture has also been started various Government high schools in rural areas.

At the secondary stage, there was 9 higher secondary schools, 150 high schools and 134 middle schools in the district, as on 31 March 1979. The total number of scholars studying in the middle and high/higher secondary schools was 43,000 (28,000 boys and 15,000 girls) and 16,000 (11,000 boys and 5,000 girls) respectively. The total number of teachers in the middle, high/higher secondary schools, both Government and private, in the district as on 30 September 1978 was 2,109 (1,452 males and 657 females) and 1,269 (957 males and 312 females), respectively.

According to the 1971 Census, there were 78 villages having middle schools and 46 with high/higher secondary schools in the district. Sex-wise of educational institutions and scholars at the secondary stage in the district, as on 30 September 1978, are given in the Appendix II on page 357.


Higher Education

Prior to the 1951 Census, there was only one degree college viz. the Ranbir College, Sangrur, functioning in the district. By 1951, two more colleges, one for girls at Sangrur and the other for boys at Malerkotla had been opened. However, the number swelled to 10 by 30 September 1978.

In these colleges, instructions up to degree level are imparted. A few of them also run pre-engineering, Pre-Medical, B. Sc., Home Science, and M. A. classes. All these institutions are affiliated to the Punjabi University, Patiala. The colleges functioning in the district as on 30 September 1978, are briefly described as under: 

Government College, Malerkotla. – It was originally founded as an Intermediate College by Nawab Ahmed Ali Khan of the erstwhile Malerkotla State in 1926. It was the first College in the district. In 1945, it was raised to the Degree College (Arts). During 1962, the science subject was also introduced.

Besides preparing the students up to the degree level (Arts and Science), the college also runs Post-Graduate Class in Economics and Political Science. Training in National Cadet Corps and National service scheme is also provided. The college has a library and dispensary facilities for games and physical education are available in the college. A number of cultural and literary associations/societies are functioning in the college.

Scholarship/stipends are also awarded to the students belonging to various categories, viz. Scheduled Castes/Backward Classes and other deserving students. The college brings out its magazine ‘Clarion’ a annually. 

The number of students on the rolls of the college, during 1977-78, was 1,599.

Government Ranbir college, Sangrur. -- This college was started in 1939 by Raja Ranbir Singh of the erstwhile Jind State as an Intermediate College, and was raised to the Degree level in 1943. The Ranbir College for Women as also merged with this college in 1963. At present, it is a co-educational college.  

Besides the degree classes in Arts and Science, the college also started M. A. Classes in Political Science in 1970. The students are also given training in National Cadet Corps and National Service Scheme in the college. It takes keen interest in providing games and sports facilities to the students. A number of culture and literary society are functioning in the college. A rich library, having about 45,000 books, a reading room and a dispensary are being maintained by it. The college brings out its magazine ‘Ranbir’ annually.

Scholarships/stipends are awarded to the students belonging to various categories viz., Scheduled Castes/Backward Classes and to poor and deserving students. 

The number of students on the rolls of the college, during 1977-78 was 1,261.

Sanatan Dharm College, Barnala. —It was started by the Sanatan Dharm Sabha, Barnala, in May 1956. The college, besides imparting instruction up to Three-Year Degree Course (Arts and Science), also Provided training under the National Cadet Corps and National Service Scheme. It is compulsory for Pre-University and Three-Year Degree Course Part I students to take one of these subjects. The college encourage the students to take healthy interest in games and sports. A few culture and literary societies and associations are functioning the college. It has laboratories, a library with a book and a reference section and an auditorium. It also publishes its magazine ‘Stream’ annually.

The students of this college are eligible for the award of all types of University, Government and other scholarships.

The number of students on the rolls of the college, during 1977-78, was 1,112.

Akal Degree College, Mastuana (Sangrur). It was originally founded by Sant baba Attar Singh in 1920, but it was closed down by the British freedom movement. It re-emerged as an Agriculture College and became a Degree College in 1963. Besides imparting instruction up to the Three-Year Degree Course (Arts and Science) it also provides training under the National Cadet Corps and National Service Scheme.

College maintains a library and a reading room. A number of cultural and literary societies/clubs are functioning in the college. It brings out its annual magazine named ‘Saint Soldier’.

The students of this college are eligible for the award of all types of university, government and other scholarships.

The number of students on the rolls of the college, during 1977-78, was 122.

Shri Lal Bahadur Shastri Mahila College, Barnala. – It was started in June 1968, in the memory of late Prime Minister, Shri Lal Bahadur Shastri, by the local Arya Samaj. The college, besides preparing students up to Three-year Degree Course (Arts Group), also provides training under the National Cadet Corps. And National Service Scheme. The college encourages sports the students for which there is good arrangement.

The college has a library and a book bank to assist the Scheduled Castes and other deserving students. Besides, a number of cultural and literary societies and functioning in the college. It brings out its magazine ‘Manogya’ annually.

The students of this college are eligible for the award of all types of university, government and other scholarships.

The number of students of the rolls of the college, during 1977-78, was 347.

Shaheed Udham Singh Government College, Sunam. – The college was started in July 1969 to commemorate the cherished memory of Shaheed Udham Singh. Originally named Shaheed Udham Singh Memorial Degree College. It was taken over by the State Government in September 1974 and renamed accordingly. The College besides preparing students up to the Three-Year Degree Course (Arts Group), also provides training under the National Cadet Corps and National Service Scheme. It has a library, a book bank and a dispensary, a number of cultural and literary societies and audovisual clubs functioning in the college to promote healthy growth of personality among the students. It brings out its magazine called ‘Udham Jayoti’ annually. 

The number of students on the rolls of the college, during 1977-78, was 445. 

Guru Gobind Singh College, Sanghera (Barnala). – The public of Sanghera, its surrounding villages, and also of Barnala had been feeling the need of rural Degree College since long at or near Barnala. In pursuance of these feelings and in order to meet this long standing demand, Gram Panchayat of Sanghera took up the initiative and donated some land for constructing a college. Accordingly a charitable trust, known as ‘Guru Gobind Singh College Trust Sanghera’ was formed and registered in 1969. The donated land of the Gram Panchayat of Sanghera was transferred to this trust and Guru Gobind Singh College was established in July 1972 on the Barnala-Ludhiana Road at Distance of 2 km from Barnala.

Besides imparting instruction up to Degree level, the college also provides training in the National Cadet Corps and National Service Scheme. Arrangements exist for all major and minor games for boys and girls in the college. In order to develop and talents of the students a number of cultural and literary societies have been formed in the college. It brings out its magazine, ‘Patrika’, once a year. 

The students of this college are eligible for the award of all types of university, government and other scholarship.

The number of students on the rolls of the college, during 1977-78, was 101.

Akal Degree College for Women, Sangrur. – To perpetuate the sacred memory of Sant Baba Attar Singh, Akal Degree College for Women Sangrur, was established on 1 July 1970. The college besides running the Degree class in Arts subjects, providing training under the National Cadet Corps. National Service Scheme and Military Science. Games are functioning in the college. The college has a library and reading room, a dispensary, and a hostel for girls. It publishes its magazine named ‘Timeless’ once a year.

The students of this college are eligible for the award of all type of university, government or other scholarships and stipends.

The number of the students of the rolls of the college, during 1977-78, was 264.

Sant Baba Attar Singh Khalsa College, Sandaur (Sangrur). – This college was also established in July 1972, in memory of Late Sant Baba Attar Singh who was a great educationist, saint and benefactor of the Malwa region. Initially, it imparted instruction up to Three-Year Degree Course Part I level but later on it was raised to Degree level.

Besides preparing students up to the Three-Year Degree Course (Arts Group), the college also provides the National Cadet Corps and games. A number of cultural and literary societies are functioning in the college to develop the latent talents of the students. It also publishes a magazine named ‘Attar Kiran’ annually. 

The number of students on the rolls of the college, during 1977-78, was 150.

Guru Tegh Bahadur College, Bhawanigarh. – The Malwa region, in general, remained backward in the field of education and to develop the area in this regards, Guru Tegh Bahadur College was opened at Bhawanigarh in 1976-77. It is affiliated to Punjabi University, Patiala. It prepares students for Three-Year Degree in Arts. The college also arranges educational tours of important historical places.

Scholarship/stipends are awarded by the college to the students belonging to Scheduled Castes whose parents are not gazetted offices. Brilliant students of Backward Class whose parents’ annual income is upto Rs 3,600 and wards of military personnels are also eligible for scholarships. Is available to the students who have obtained more than 60 per cent marks in Matriculation and the monthly income of their parents is not more than Rs 500.

The number of students on the rolls of the college, during 1977-78, was 69.


(d) Professional and Technical Education

Teachers’ Training

There was no such institution functioning in the district during 1977-78.

Medical Education

There was no institution for imparting medical education in the district during 1977-78. 

Technical Education

Technical education plays an important role in the industrial development of the country. To ensure steady flow of technical personnel, a number of technical colleges, Industrial Training Centres and Industrial Training Centres for girls at Ahmedgarh, Barnala, Dhuri, Sunam and Sangrur were functioning in the district. Besdes, one Rural Artisan Centre for boys, at Barnala, and two Industrial Training Institutes, one each at Sunam and Sangrur, have also been opened.

In Industrial Training Institutes/ Centres, the students are prepared for diploma/certificate courses in Civil, Mechanical and Electrical Engineering and various trades/crafts such as welding, carpentry, fitting, turnery, blacksmithy, stenography, radio and television mechanic, refrigeration mechanic electrician, wiremen, draftsmanship, etc. the girl students are taught crafts like tailoring, cutting, hand-embroidery, machine-embroidery, needlework etc.  

Detailed particulars of these Industrial Training Institutes/Centres in the Sangrur District have been given in Chapter V on “Industries”.

(e) Physical Education

The main objective of imparting physical education is to make child physically fit, mentally alert and morally sound. In order to improve physical efficiency of the youth, the Punjab State has introduced Physical Education Scheme in all its districts. It has been made a compulsory subject in al the middle and high/higher secondary schools of the State since 1974. Under this system, one Physical Training Instructor is attached to each of the middle and high/higher secondary schools for organizing it. In the colleges, physical education is directed and guided by the Physical Directors. Special emphasis is given to promote physical education and inculcate the sprit of sportsmanship by cultivating interest of the young students in games. Younger children are taught action songs, motion stories, etc. Government funds are allocated to the schools for purchase of equipment for the games. Where it is justified, schools receive grants to buy land for playground. The development of sports in the State is the responsibility of the Department of Sports, the Punjab State sports Council and the Punjab Panchayati Raj Khed Parishad[P5] .

At the District level, the District Education Officer is assisted by an Assistant District Education Officer for the promotion of physical education. He and Circle Incharge of National Fitness Corps supervise and guide physical education in the schools. On 31 March 1978, there were 27 physical Education Directors, 205 Physical Education Instructors and 29 NFC (PTI) in the district. 

Besides the above, the following schemes, under the separate departments, also promote the cause of physical education:

                         i.         Promotion of Sports and Games by the State Sports Department.

                       ii.         National Fitness Corps, sponsored by the Government of India.

                      iii.         National Cadet Corps.

                     iv.         Bharat Scouts and Guides.

(i) Promotion of Sports and Games. – Keeping in view the importance of sports, the Punjab Government created in 1961 an independent department for sports, called the Sports Department, Punjab, and appointed players of national and international fame as Sports Officer. At the District level the department is represented by the District Sports Officer, Sangrur. He is assisted by 7 Junior Sports Officers and two Sports Coaches, and other miscellaneous Class III and Class IV staff. Besides, three are two sub-centres in the district one at Sunam which is headed by a Sports Officer and another at Malerkotla which is manned by 2 Sports Officer and a Junior Sports Officer.

The main functions of this department i.e., the Sports Department, Punjab, are to provide training facilities in sports to the students and sportsmen of college, schools, private institutions etc. according to their requisitions. In general the training is given twice a day in the district Stadium and in schools and colleges. The Department is making strenuous efforts to promote sports talent in all parts of the State. It conducts off season conditioning camps, and teams are put on special training before they participate in national, and teams are put on special training before they participate in national, inter-State, and inter-University competitions. The Department also awards scholarships to the distinguished players, besides giving grants for the development of play-grounds.

At Sangrur, 1 Foot-ball, 2 Hockey, 1 Volley-ball, 1 Basket-ball, 1-Juddo, 1 Hand-ball, 1 Gymnastic, 1 Athletic and 1 Swimming, Coaching Centres were functioning in 1977-78. Two sub-coahing in foot-ball, athletic and wrestling and athletic and boxing, respectively.

Contents        Next


 [P1]The Gram Panchayat Act, 1952, has been amended to allow the constitution of a panchayat for the village having population of 100.

 [P2] Prior to the abolition of the Punjab Vidhan Parishad in 1969, the membership of a panchayat Samiti also included such members of the Punjab Vidhan Parishad as the Government might by order specify.


 [P3]Census of Indian 1961, Punjab District Census Handbook No. 17, Sangrur District, p. 29 and District Education Officer, Sangrur

 [P4]As per 1981 Census, Scheduled Castes formed 25.48 per cent of the district’s total population.

 [P5]To co-ordinate the activities of these Organisations an apex body, viz. Punjab State Sports Development Board has been set up since June 1982.

mpetitions. The Department also awards scholarships to the distinguished players, besides giving grants