L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Moneylender, son shot at; Rs 19 lakh looted
4 motorcycle-borne youths strike near Gill Road
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 5
In one of the biggest daylight robberies in the city, four armed motor-cycle borne robbers wearing helmets shot at and seriously wounded a moneylender, his young son and a daughter and looted a bag containing about Rs 19 lakh just outside their house in Muradpura colony near Gill Road today afternoon.

The victims Bachan Singh (aged about 50), his son Sunny (22) and daughter (28) had withdrawn the amount from Vijaya Bank, near Clock Tower at about noon today. They reached their house in their Santro car but at the house gate, four robbers riding two motor-cycles came from the opposite direction and threatened to shoot them if they did not hand over the bag.

Mr Gurdev Singh, a neighbour who came out of his house hearing the gunshots, said the youth Sunny tried to resist the robbers. He also tried to pull back the bag which was being snatched by the robbers. The robbers then opened fire and also shot at his father and sister, who tried to come to the rescue of the injured youth. He along with other area residents rushed the injured to hospital.

Mr Bachan Singh was hit twice while the other two were hit several times. The robbers then picked up the bag in the car and sped away. They, however, left a .32 bore revolver at the crime site. A shoe allegedly belonging to one of the robbers was also recovered from the site by the police.

The area is quite congested and the roads are narrow. Police sources said there were number of eyewitnesses to the incident but no one could dare to confront the fleeing robbers fearing threat to their lives.

The injured were operated upon in the CMC hospital and their condition was stated to be serious till the filing of this report. The crime site presented a ghastly scene with pools of blood at the several spots where the injured had fallen.

Some eyewitnesses wishing not to be quoted said the robbers seemed to have been inspired from the recent Hindi movie Dhoom in which a similar gang of motor-cycle borne robbers committed daring robberies.

SSP Narinderpal Singh said the police had got some relevant clues about the accused and would track them down soon. Nobody could see the face of the robbers as they were wearing helmets. The revolver left by the accused on the spot was also a licensed weapon and the owner was being traced. The police is verifying whether it was stolen.

Family sources said the victim, Mr Bachan Singh, was robbed about an year ago also when some robbers had thrown chilly-powder in his eyes and snatched a bag containing several lakhs.

The police, meanwhile, sounded a red alert in the city after the incident. Check posts were established at several places and two-wheelers were frisked but there was no success in nabbing the accused.

Sources said the youth could not have left the city and may be hiding somewhere nearby. The police was checking vehicles in parking stands, hotels and cinema halls.



Sahnewal SHO shifted; SP, DSP get notices
Accused of implicating ex-serviceman in false case
Jupinderjit Singh
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 5
The DIG, Ludhiana, has issued show-cause notices to the SP (City-II) and DSP, Sahnewal, of the Punjab police here besides ordering a departmental inquiry against the SHO of Sahnewal and his immediate transfer to the Police Lines for registering a false case of human trafficking against a Gurdaspur-based 62-year-old ex-serviceman, Gurbachan Singh.

He was booked without proper verification in a false case and had to stay for over two months in Central Jail here at the behest of his son-in-law. DIG Parag Jain has in orders issued today directed the SSP of Ludhiana to immediately transfer the SHO of Sahnewal, SI Dilpreet Singh to the Lines for a registering a false case without due investigation. Dig Jain has confirmed the orders.

He has issued show-cause notices to SP (City-II) Pritam Singh and DSP Baljinder Singh Dhillon for allowing the registration of the case without proper verification in January this year.

It was a sting operation carried out in Germany by the ex-serviceman’s two sons that helped largely in his relief besides the high-level probe conducted by Jagraon SSP Rajiv Ahir on the directions of the DIG to expose the cops involvement in the false FIR.

The ex-serviceman, who had retired some years ago from the MES wing of the Indian Army had to face the harassment and ignominy of staying in the jail allegedly because of a conspiracy hatched by one of his son-in-law , Jaspal Singh and police officials at Sahnewal, the inquiry report said.

Jaspal Singh had in the complaint before the Sahnewal police accused his father-in-law of taking nearly Rs 3 lakh from him to send him to Germany. He had claimed that Gurbachan Singh played a fraud with him by not sending him abroad and also dilly-dallying on returning the money.

The ex-serviceman’s two sons had recorded a phone conversation with Jaspal Singh in which the real reasons behind the case were revealed.

Jaspal was allegedly peeved at his in-laws’ family for not allowing him to adopt the son of his sister-in-law. Jaspal Singh is issueless. Another daughter of Gurbachan Singh is a divorcee and her five-year-old son was adopted by Jaspal Singh and his wife. However, the natural mother took the child back a few months ago. Jaspal wanted the child at any cost and allegedly hobnobbed with Sahnewal cops to hatch the conspiracy.

The DIG has also ordered immediate discharge of the ex-servicemen in the case and ordered cancellation of the case. According to the inquiry report, the case was registered without seeking explanation from the ex-serviceman about the allegations levelled by his son-in-law. The police has stated that Gurbachan Singh was unavailable for joining the investigation.

However, just a morning after the case was registered, the police found him in a raid conducted at Gurdaspur and sent him to jail. The elderly man got bail after spending over two months behind bars.

He then approached DIG Parag Jain and narrated his tale of miseries. He also furnished proof that he had never done the business of a travel agent as alleged by his son-in-law. He also furnished an audio tape.

The probe found that Gurbachan Singh never worked as a travel agent. The family trusted Jaspal Singh so much that the sons of the ex-serviceman used to send money to him through Jaspal Singh only.



Woman saved from strangulation
Husband, mother-in-law arrested
Mahesh Sharma

Mandi Ahmedgarh, May 5
Residents of Maherna Khurd village led by the panchayat have saved a woman from being strangulated by her in-laws for allegedly bringing meagre dowry. The police has registered an FIR against the accused under Sections 498 and 406 of the IPC and arrested two of them.

Mr Dya Singh, Sarpanch, Mr Lachhman Singh, former panch, and Capt Bagga Singh claimed that they along with other villagers had saved Harpreet Kaur, a Dalit woman, from being strangulated by her husband Rampal Singh and his parents yesterday.

“Some girls of our village informed us in the afternoon yesterday that Harpreet Kaur of Dalit Colony was being strangulated by her husband and his parents,” said Mr Dya Singh.

They got the villagers together and went to the house of the woman and found the door bolted from inside. As a stereo system was playing at full pitch in the house nothing was audible. The village leaders entered the house from the rooftop and allegedly, found that some persons were trying to strangulate Harpreet Kaur. They were later identified as Rampal Singh, his Chamkaur Singh father, mother Surjit Kaur , Jasbir Kaur, Raj Kaur and Goldy (sisters).

Though the villagers tried to nab the accused on the spot, they succeeded in running away. The panchayat reported the matter to the police and called the parents of the woman. She was shifted to the Civil Hospital here, for treatment and medical examination.

According to Harpreet brother Harvinder Singh of Buraj Hakiman in Ludhiana district, hir sister was married to Rampal in July, 2003. The family had spent around Rs 3 lakh on the marriage.

Rampal went to Africa immediately after the marriage and left Harpreet with of his parents who allegedly harassed her. She reportedly tolerated harassment by her in-laws with an expectation that brighter days would return after one year when her husband was scheduled to return.

The parents of the girl had come to know later that the engagement of Rampal had broken at least six times before their marriage. The parents of a girl at Kadon village had broken the relation a week prior to the scheduled marriage.

Sources at the police station revealed that the accused had been booked and Harpal Singh and his mother Surjit Kaur arrested. 



Vehicles towed away, shopkeepers protest
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 5
To ensure smooth traffic flow in Bhadaur House, the tehbazaari branch of the local Municipal Corporation, towed away a number of vehicles parked outside the shops here today.

A number of two wheelers, parked in a haphazard manner on the road leading to Mata Rani Chowk were impounded even as shopkeepers protested against the action. However, for commuters, it came as respite as there was no traffic chaos for some hours.

Later, office-bearers of the shopkeepers association met the Joint Commissioner, Ms Babita Kler, and demanded that a yellow line demarcating the parking space for vehicles should be painted on the road.

Mr Mohinder Aggarwal, an office-bearer of association, in a written statement in the evening claimed that the Joint Commissioner had agreed to the request.

The shopkeepers had, in the morning, staged a dharna against the MC action and raised slogans against the civic body for towing away their vehicles. They argued that there was no place for them for parking their vehicles and the MC was harassing them by taking their vehicles away. ‘

They claimed that they would have to get these released on ‘superdari’and would have to go through many legal formalities for doing so. In the process, the vehicles got damaged also. They demanded that the MC team could have instead challaned the vehicles for wrong parking.

The Bhadaur House area is a major traffic bottleneck in the city. Temporary encroachments by shopkeepers and parking of vehicles compounds the problem.



Youth commits suicide
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 5
A 24-year-old youth, son of an alleged narcotics smuggler incarcerated at Central Jail here, has allegedly committed suicide by eating some poisonous substance after being beaten by relatives of a girl in Guru Arjuan Dev Nagar here last night.

The youth Surinder Singh, who was unemployed, was beaten by the girl’s relatives who objected to his roaming around the area on Monday. Upset after the incident, he allegedly ate some poisonous substance last night and died this afternoon. The police has registered a case of abetment to suicide against the girl’s father Dharampal, brother Sonu and one other unidentified relative. The girl’s family has, however, claimed that the youth was unnecessarily harassing the girl.



Man booked for selling land twice

Jagraon, May 5
A person allegedly sold his land twice and now is facing imprisonment.
According to information, Kashmir Singh of Bahadurke sold 2 kanals of land to Karnail Singh of his village in the year 2002 and received full and final payment of the sale. But immediately thereafter he again sold the same piece of land to Satwinder Singh also of the same village. The Sidhwan Bet police has registered a case under Sections 420, 467, 468, 471 and 120-B of the IPC and the matter is under investigation. OC



Cong out to marginalise SGPC: Jagir Kaur
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 5
Shiromani Gurdwara Prabandhak Committee chief, Bibi Jagir Kaur today accused the Congress government in Punjab of carrying out a campaign to marginalise the SGPC. Blaming the government for “politicising” the martyrdom tercentenary celebrations of 400 ‘Muktas’ in Muktsar, Bibi Jagir Kaur said the government should rather focus on carrying out development works.

“If they had religious motives, they should have paid obeisance at gurdwaras. Their only focus was on creating a separate stage. It is nothing but a sheer attempt to interfere in religious affairs and wipe out the SGPC,” she said. The SGPC chief said the Congress Government should focus on carrying out its own functions efficiently. “They are now planning to spend Rs 15-17 lakh on memorial gates, which we can get done through ‘kar sewa’.



Reaching out to ailing villagers
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, May 5
With the noble objective of reaching out to the sick and ailing people in villages around the city, Gurdev Hospital pressed into service a fully equipped van to cater to medical emergencies in rural areas here today. The ambulance has been donated by a local dyeing factory.

Presiding over a brief ceremony to mark the occasion, Dr S.S. Grewal, director of the hospital, said it was a small gesture by the institution towards providing quality medical care at the door steps of the rural people around the city. He said the mobile service would prove to be a boon to victims of road accidents and other medical emergencies because many precious lives were lost due to delay caused in reaching the hospitals for medical assistance.

Dr Ranjit Singh Cheema and Dr Waheguru Pal Singh Sidhu outlined several other measures, being taken by the hospital for community service and bringing latest medical technology within reach of the common people.

Other speakers, including chief guest Mr Keshav Vij, Dr Hardev Singh Alamgir, Dr Balwant Singh, Mr Pavittar Singh, chairman, Sports Club, Gujjarwal, Mr Gurdeep Singh Leel, president, International Sikh Dharam Parchar Manch, Mr Baldev Singh Grewal, Mr Pritam Singh Bharowal and Master Harnek Singh Beela lauded the initiative taken by the hospital to bring medical care within the reach of rural population.



Ghalughara memorial proposed
K.S. Chawla

Ludhiana, May 5
The Shiromani Gurdwara Prabandhak Committee (SGPC) proposes to set up a memorial at Raheera village near Ahmedgarh in Sangrur district to perpetuate the memory of those Sikhs who were killed in Wadda Ghalughara.

A fierce battle was fought by Sikh confederacies in 1762 against Afghan invader Ahmed Shah Abdali who sought to annex Punjab.

According to Prof Prithipal Singh Kapoor, former Pro-Vice Chancellor, Guru Nanak Dev University and a Sikh scholar, this was perhaps the first pitched battle which the Sikhs fought against the invader in which more than 12,000 Sikhs perished.

The site of the battle is spread over an area of 20 km from the villages of Raheera-Kup to the neighbourhood of Barnala. The area has a large Muslim population and so far not even a gurdwara has been established there. About a couple of years back when the importance of the battle was highlighted by the Sikhs at large, the idea of setting up a gurdwara was mooted by Sant Jagtar Singh Karsewawale of Tarn Taran. A big gurdwara has come up on the site on a mound. The SGPC has bought 3 acres to raise a memorial close to it.

The SGPC has set up a concept committee comprising Prof Prithipal Singh Kapoor, Dr Darshan Singh, former Professor of Guru Nanak Studies, Panjab University, Dr Dalbir Singh Dhillon, Head of History Department, Punjabi University and Mr Sarbjinder Singh of Guru Granth Sahib Studies, Punjabi University, to suggest a suitable memorial at Raheera. The committee has visited the site and has approved the same.

The committee has recommended to the SGPC that some sculptors and architects should be associated to raise the memorial. The committee also decided to discuss the concept paper in its next meeting.



Satpal Prashar remembered
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 5
Glowing tributes were paid to late Satpal Prashar, a veteran Congress leader and legislator, who was gunned down by militants on this day 15 years ago. Prominent among those who paid tributes included the local MLA and parliamentary secretary, Mr Surinder Dawer, Seva Dal leader Sushil Prashar, Pradesh Congress Committee general secretary Pappi Prashar, and councillors, Rakesh Prashar and Sanjay Talwar.

The workers resolved to uphold the values and principles for which late leader laid down his life. They said it was because of the great sacrifices of the people like him that Punjab did not succumb to the terrorism and ultimately it was rooted out of the state.

Seva Dal workers led by Mr Sushil Prashar vowed that they would not let the sarcifice of the late leader go waste. 



Blindfolded magician rides motor cycle
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, May 5
Through the most crowded areas of the city magician OP Sharma overawed city residents by riding a motor cycle blind folded on GT Road, Dana Mandi, bus stop, Bharat Nagar Chowk and many other areas.

The wonder struck people garlanding him and offered him sweets.

Mr OP Sharma had started his journey from Kalsi Motors GT Road and travelled through the thickly populated areas of the city ended his exciting journey at Arora Palace where his first magic show will be held May 6

When asked how he negotiated the turns he said he used hypnotism. Moreover his ears were sensitive to every sound. 



PO held, remanded
Our Correspondent

Khamano, May 5
The Khamano police has arrested a proclaimed offender, Tirath Singh, who was absconding since 1999. According to the Khamano, DSP Mr Balwant Singh, Tirath Singh, a resident of Fiali village in Kapurthala district alongwith three others, had bought a Maruti car from Subhash Chander Jain, a teacher of Khamano. But they paid the money through a forged draft.

A case was registered at against the four persons in October, 1999, Khamano police station under Sections 420, 467, 468, 471, IPC. Three accomplices of Tirath Singh were arrested in 2002.

He was produced in the court of Justice Gopal Arora at Fatehgarh Sahib and was remanded in Judicial custody till May 14.


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