Monday, March 19, 2001,
Chandigarh, India
L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Warrant against excise official for misusing Act
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 18
The City Judicial Magistrate, Mr Rajeev K. Beri, has issued an arrest warrant against the Additional Director of the Central Excise in Calicut, John Joseph, under Sections 500 and 501 of the IPC. Joseph had allegedly defamed the company of Mr S.P. Goyal, a local industrialist.

The official had issued a detention order under COFEPOSA against Mr S.P. Goyal, charging him with smuggling out pens to Dubai. He had also got advertisements published against Mr Goyal’s company, saying that it was involved in smuggling and did not operate from its given address.

The Punjab and Haryana High Court had already quashed that order, declaring it illegal and motivated.

The High Court, on February 5, had observed, “The order was passed for a wrong purpose and the case does not fall under the provisions of COFEPOSA.”

Mr Sanjeev Kumar Goyal, son of Mr S.P. Goyal, at a press conference here today, alleged that John Joseph, who was now Commissioner of Excise and Customs in Calicut, had issued this order in connivance with some other officials of Customs, Directorate of Revenue Intelligence and COFEPOSA Unit.

Mr Goyal said, “Earlier, Joseph had demanded money from my father and our imported consignments were held at the DRI in Delhi on his orders. ”

The matter was taken up in the Delhi High Court, that ordered the release of the goods and fined the DRI. After this order, Joseph conspired with some other officials for getting the detention order passed. Mr Goyal said their motive was to extort money from his family. Before the court verdict, Mr S.P. Goyal had to remain in hiding for seven months to avoid detention.

Mr Goyal said, “Before issuing the order under COFEPOSA, officials had demanded Rs 25 lakh from the family, but the family decided to resist.”

Mr S.P. Goyal urged the authorities to take action against Joseph for harassing the family and order an inquiry by the CBI and the Central Vigilance Commission into this affair.

He said the family was trying to contact to expose the black sheep in Customs, the DRI and COFEPOSA Unit. He said the Act should be amended to ensure that it was not misused by officials.


Poet of masses and elite
Vimal Sumbly
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 18
Nida Fazli is one of the few great living Urdu poets who continue to generate a poetic stream that reflects the plight of human beings. Nida Fazli has established himself as an acknowledged poet of the masses and the elite, a rare distinction that everyone vies for, but not many can accomplish.

Nida Fazli was here recently to meet his friend Ashok Bhalla. He is fond of Ludhiana, as he told ‘Ludhiana Tribune’ in an exclusive interview. He was accompanying his friend and ‘ghazal’ legend Jagjit Singh.

He shares a unique distinction with great poets like Sahir of giving aesthetic touch to Hindi flim lyrics. His ‘ghazals’ like ‘Kabhi Kisi Ko Mukammal Jahan Nahin Milta’, are as popular today as these were decades ago. It is a combination of intellectual content and popular taste that makes his lyrics acceptable and everlasting.

There is an element of progressive thought that runs throughout in his writings, which reflects his concern for the underprivileged. Regarding the purpose of his writings, he said, “I try to reflect the socio-political reality of the country and it pains me to see how the poor are exploited in the name of religion by politicians”. His composition ‘Ghar Se Masjid Hai Bahut Dur, Chalo Youn Kar Lein, Kisi Rote Huye Bache Ko Hansa Lein’ says it all.

After visiting Pakistan, he had returned a disappointed man. He was pained to see the sorry condition of the masses there. “It is as bad as here,” he said. He created a stir of sorts in the political circles of the subcontinent when he wrote after his return from Pakistan — ‘Insan Mein Haiwan Yehan Bi Hai Wahan Bi, Allah Nigahban Yahan Bi Hai Wahan Bi’.

Nida Fazli has risen from the ranks after receiving his early education in Gwalior and getting his masters degree in Hindi and Urdu. He has written 23 books in different languages. These include two autobiographical novels ‘Deewaron Ke Beech’ and ‘Dewaron Ke Bahar’. In 1998, he won the Sahitya Academy Award for his book of poetry, ‘Khoya Hua Sab Kuch’.

His pursuit of his ideals will continue, for the fire will remain burning till the goal is not achieved, as he says at the end of one of his famous ‘Ghazals’ Mera Junoon Rahe Baki’.


Ring road will uproot 60 families of colony
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 18
The state government is not responding to the demand of the residents of Passey Nagar here to keep their interest in view before constructing a ring road connecting Pakhowal Road to Doraha Canal Road. The residents whose houses will have to be removed to lay the road are running from pillar to post to get their grievances heard.

The councillor of Ward Number 40, Ms Harpreet Kaur, has written to the Deputy Commissioner, Mr S.K. Sandhu, to intervene in the matter. She has urged officials of the Punjab Urban Planning and Development Authority (PUDA) that the fate of residents is now uncertain, as neither they nor she was ever informed about the situation.

She said the residents were against the project as they had built their houses on the land, got there registered and their housing plans approved from the corporation. She said, at that time, PUDA had not earmarked the land for the ring road.

The councillor said, two years ago, officials of PUDA had visited Passey Nagar and Moti Bagh colonies for measuring the land for the road, which had alarmed the residents, as nearly 60 houses were in the earmarked area.

She said how could PUDA suddenly decide on building a wide road through a densely populated colony of the city.

Ms Harpreet Kaur has also written that the residents of the area have constructed their houses with their hard-earned money and it will be difficult for them to loose these. The residents are the legal owners of the land, who did not know what fate had in store for them.

She said, if the authorities had been aware that this land had been earmarked for a ring road, why had they approved the housing plans. She said there was no proof that this was a PUDA land.

The councillor has asked the DC to do the needful as the road plan was made 30 years ago when there was no habitation in this area. When the houses came up here, nobody knew that this was a PUDA land. Suddenly, authorities arrived here one fine morning, saying that this land had been earmarked for the ring road.


PFA charged with desecrating ashram
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, March 18
Resentment prevails among hundreds of devotees of Baba Kirti Giri against the People For Animals for entering the ashram with shoes on yesterday morning, and later taking away a couple of cheetah skins with the help of the police.

Though following intervention by a number of local leaders, the skins have been returned to the ashram, the devotees are not pleased with the PFA, which they think exceeded its limits in entering a religious place in search of animal skins.

The Baba said the ashram had been desecrated by the PFA. One of the skins, when inspected after these were returned by the police last evening, had been cut at one place, most probably by the PFA people. Showing the damaged skin to this correspondent, the Baba said his ‘asan’ (seat) for meditation had been desecrated. He termed the PFA action as being similar to that of the Taliban, who had no respect for their opponents’ religion. He also demanded the return of certain papers on which his signatures were taken.

Describing yesterday’s incident, Mr Ravi Sharma, an ashram devotee, said around eight in the morning when the PFA people arrived and entered the ashram with their shoes on. When they were told to take off their shoes outside, they started threatening those present of dire consequences that they were ‘government men.’ They also said they wanted to hold a camp in the ashram.

The PFA people then came back after a couple of hours, accompanied by a cop from the Vardhman police post, who said the skins had to be taken to the post. As word of the incident spread among Baba’s followers, which include a whole lot of political leaders as well, they assembled at the ashram. Senior police officers, including Mr Santokh Singh, SHO, Focal Point police station, also reached the ashram in the meanwhile.

When the Baba explained that he had been given the skins by a devotee some 32 years ago, the PFA returned the skins on the bidding of the police officials.

While one skin was that of a full-grown cheetah, the other was only a cloth sheet, on which two surviving fragments of a cheetah skin had been stitched on for the sake of preserving the same.

Several devotees, including the Baba maintained that following the seizure of the skins, there had been no communal tension as reported by a newspaper. Anxious devotees had only tried to obstruct the traffic on Chandigarh road.

Dr Sandeep Jain, president, PFA, could not be reached over the telephone in spite of several attempts to do so.

Meanwhile, PFA refuted the communal charges levelled by a religious leader at Mundiyan Kalan village following the seizure of tiger skin from him yesterday. Kirti Giri, the religious leader, had filed a complaint at focal point police station that officials of the Department of Wildlife and PFA had entered the shrine wearing shoes. However, Ajay Jain, general secretary, PFA, said in a press note, that the officials had gone bare foot. He said that they visited the shrine just to seize the tiger skin which Kirti Giri had been using as a cushion.


Saif’s double meets the original
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, March 18
A city man who looks like Saif Ali Khan has had a wonderful time with the junior ‘nawab’ and his family in Mumbai. Ashok Kumar ‘Mintu,’ 23, a resident of Basti Jodhewal, proudly shows his pictures with the Pataudi family.

The most prized gift for Mintu, however, is a jacket autographed by Saif that he had worn in the movie ‘Imtihaan’. Mintu said, whenever he used to see himself in the mirror, he realised that he looked like the film star.

He started watching Saif ’s movies at the age of 13 and he has seen some of the movies more than 20 times each. Soon, Saif became his role model and he started imitating him. After rehearsing hard, he learnt all dialogues, dance steps and styles of Saif.

He started performing in marriage function as duplicate of Saif and behaving like the film star became his life style. He tried many times to go to Mumbai to meet the cine star, but the poor financial condition of his family stopped him. He could meet him only past month.

Mintu went to Mumbai past month to meet Saif without carrying the address of the film star. He kept on walking in the streets of Mumbai like a mad man, until he found out the Andheri residence of Saif. He met Saif and stayed at his residence for a week. He said Saif had treated him like a special guest. Mintu said the time spent at Saif’s residence was the golden period of his life. His interaction with the daughter of the cine star, Sarika, was an exciting experience. He entertained her acting like her father. Mintu told Saif that he wanted to work with him in a film and Saif promised that he would try to arrange for this. When Mintu left Mumbai, Saif gave him Rs 1,100 as a token to love.

Mintu works in a garment factory and earns Rs 2,000 per month. He said, “My parents want that I should become a successful man and I think that acting is one way to achieve success without cheating others.” He said, “My only limitation is my height (4 feet), which is a big hurdle in my way to success.” Who knows, one day this hurdle might become his asset.


Baby, flower show inaugurated in city
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, March 18
According to Dr J.S. Bilga, Xen (Horticulture, Techno Care Nursery and Garden Centre, Ludhiana, won Challenge Shields while among institutions, DAV Public School, BRS Nagar won the first prize.

In home gardens, Mr Abnash Singh and Ms Rama Munjal were declared first and in the medium home garden, Ms Ramanjot Kaur bagged the first prize. Model Town Welfare Council-maintained park, (Tankywala park) and Green Avenue Park won the first prize. Rose Garden (PUDA) won the first prize and Verka Milk Plant garden and Dada Motors were declared second among Government/institutional gardens.

In the on-the-spot painting competitions, Gurpreet Kaur, Sheetal and Manjot Kaur won first prizes respectively for children in the 3-6, 6-9 and 9-12 years age group. Kavneet Kaur and Veranda Kaur won first prizes among students of 12-15 and 15-20 year group. Ms Amanjot Kaur won first prize for the open group.

Master Sanyam Sachdeva, Baby Prabhleen Bagga, Baby Jasleen, Baby Anupreet and Baby Sadhika Walia were declared first among babies below one year, 1-2, 2-3, 3-4 and 4-5 years age group respectively. Judges for various categories had been invited from Punjab Agricultural University, Khalsa College, Amritsar, Dayanand Medical College, Christian Medical College and other leading educational institutes. Both the chief guests, Dr S.S. Sandhu, Commissioner, MC, and the Mayor, Mr Apinder Singh, appealed to the citizens to help the corporation to make Ludhiana clean as well as green.


CMC union threatens to go on strike
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, March 18
The workers union of Christian Medical College (CMC) has submitted a memorandum to the CMC management demanding immediate dialogue for solving their long-pending problems. The union has said that if the management failed to do so, they would be forced to agitate for their demands.

The union is demanding a 20 per cent bonus, re-employment of a technician and investigations of sexual harassment charges against the Principal head of dental college. They demanded that families of cooks, employed for the past three generations, should be made permanent. Also a committee of management and workers, including prominent members of the city (acceptable to both the parties), and some people from labour department should be formed to make new service rules. Quarters for the workers should be constructed and handed over to them in easy instalments. 


Minister inaugurates free eye camp
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, March 18
Dr Baldev Raj Chawla, Minister for Health and Family Welfare, inaugurated the 21st free eye camp at Ved Mandir Marg, Daresi Grounds here today.

The organisers of the camp said that free eye camp was organised in the months of September and March every year. During the camps, patients are provided with free medicines and operations are performed by renowned surgeons.

Mr J.C. Kapoor, president, Ved Mandir Charitable Eye Hospital said that the hospital has been doing something for the welfare of needy and poor.

Speaking on the occasion, Dr Chawla, said such camps were helpful for those who could not bear treatment expenses. He appreciated the efforts of the Civil Surgeon and various non government organisations, who were working to eradicate tuberculosis. He said that such organisations in the district had already adopted TB patients. Dr Chawla said that every minute a person died due to tuberculosis in the country. More than 3 lakh people in the country suffered from TB.

Dr Chawla said that from April 1 to April 15 health officials of Punjab would visit door-to-door to give information about STD and RTI diseases. Such cases would be reported in the Civil Surgeon’s office.

The Health Minister said that drug addiction was another major problem in the state. About 53 per cent of people in the city and 47 per cent people from villages were drug addicts. Most of the drug addicts were from schools and colleges. He also said that drug rehabilitation centres had opened in every district, which would be helpful for drug addicts.


Shagun cheques distributed
Our Correspondent

Machhiwara, March 18
A total of 244 cheques, each worth Rs 5,100, were distributed under the Shagun Scheme by local MLA and the Speaker, Punjab Vidhan Sabha, Mr Charanjit Singh Atwal, at different functions organised at Machhiwara, Kohara and Chaunta yesterday.

In his address, he assured that the amount of ‘shagun’ might be increased in future. He announced that the major demand of the constituency had been approved. Mr Parkash Singh Badal, Chief Minister Punjab, would inaugurate the construction work of Satluj bridge connecting Machhiwara-Rahon on April 8 at Ghumana village, he informed.

The SDM Samrala, Mr Sandeep Hans, who was also present on the occasion, announced that all pension cases which had been submitted at a camp in Machhiwara had been approved.

The SDM Ludhiana, Kuldeep Singh, Mr Gurcharan Singh, Chairman Market Committee, Machhiwara, Mr Santa Singh Umaidpuri, Chairman, Market Committee Sahnewal, Mr Harjit Singh Sherian and Mr Jagroop Singh Baba, Jathedars of Sahnewal, among others were present on the occasion.


Arsh, Dardi honoured
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 18
Noted Punjabi poet Sri Ram Arsh was today awarded with the Surjit Rampuri Award for his outstanding contribution to the Punjabi literature.

The award was presented to him at a colourful function organised by the Punjabi Gazal Manch.

Besides Mahavir Dardi was presented the Dr Randhir Singh Memorial award on the occasion.

The awards were presented by the Deputy Speaker of the Punjab Legislative Assembly, Mr Satpal Gosain. Speaking on the occasion Mr Gosai lauded the remarkable contribution made by the two imminent literateurs to Punjabi.


Gang of thieves busted
Our Correspondent

Khanna, March 18
The police here yesterday claimed to have busted a gang of thieves and arrested its five members, and recovered goods worth lakhs of rupees.

According to SSP Khanna, Mr R.N. Dhoke, the gang members arrested are Sukhdev Singh of Tikri, Vijay Kumar of Saharanpur, Mangal Singh of Rampur, Anokh Singh of Rampur and Fatta of Bazigar Basti Model Town Khanna.

The police recovered two coloured TVs, one VCR, six cycles, two rickshaws and 130 suit pieces from them. The SSP said that in another incident the Payal police had arrested one person Parminder Singh Kala who along with two other persons had injured a sweet shop-owner Jaspal Chand with a sword.

A case under Sections 307, 452 and 34 of the IPC has been registered against them. 

Home | Punjab | Haryana | Jammu & Kashmir | Himachal Pradesh | Regional Briefs | Nation | Editorial |
Business | Sport | World | Mailbag | In Spotlight | Chandigarh Tribune | Ludhiana Tribune
50 years of Independence | Tercentenary Celebrations |
121 Years of Trust | Calendar | Weather | Archive | Subscribe | Suggestion | E-mail |