L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Riot victims lay siege to GT Road
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Supporters of 1984 riot victims set a tyre on fire during a protest at GT Road in Ludhiana
Supporters of 1984 riot victims set a tyre on fire during a protest at GT Road in Ludhiana on Wednesday. Photo: Inderjeet Verma

Ludhiana, May 5
Traffic came to a standstill on the GT Road near Gyaspura after ‘84 riot victims blocked traffic and burnt effigies of Punjab Youth Congress president Ravneet Bittu and MP Partap Singh Bajwa for objecting to the points raised by MP Harsimrat Kaur Badal about riots victims in Parliament.

They laid siege to the road for nearly two hours, leaving thousands of commuters stranded. The victims burnt tyres on road and raised slogans against the Congress regime for “patronising” the culprits of the massacre.

Surjeet Singh, president of a riot victim organisation, said when Harsimrat had spoken against Jagdish Tytler, the two MPs objected to it. “Instead of supporting the SAD MP, the Congress leaders raised objection. We are fighting for a cause and leaders like Bittu and Bajwa have shown that their political interest is more important.”

The last-minute shift in the venue came as a surprise for the police. Yesterday, the riot victims had announced that they would stage a dharna on the GT Road near the Jalandhar bypass and the police had made the necessary arrangements so that the commuters were not inconvenienced. But the victims later shifted the venue to the GT Road near Gyaspura.

Serpentine queues of vehicles were seen on both sides of the road where the victims were staging the protest. Bus passengers heading for long routes were the worst hit. “They should have staged the dharna in Delhi. What is the point blocking a road in Ludhiana? I have been standing here along with my mother and wife for an hour,” said Gurpreet Bhullar, a resident who was headed for Patiala.

Miffed at being stuck in a jam for more than an hour, Tejinder Singh, another commuter, said: “It was a state-government sponsored dharna, as the police was a mute spectator. Had some other organisation created a traffic jam on the GT Road, they would have been thrashed and booked by the police.”

Though the traffic police diverted traffic on alternative routes from Sherpur Chowk, some commuters lost their way to get back on the GT Road.


Docs accused of fabricating injury reports
Anshu Seth
Tribune News Service

Minister urged to order probe

In a complaint forwarded in November to Punjab Health Minister Laxmikanta Chawla, Rohit Sabharwal, president of the Anti-Corruption & Crime Investigation Cell, had asked the minister to order a vigilance inquiry into the ‘medico-legal’ cases handled at the city’s Civil Hospital. The complaint had also referred to the serious allegations about a ‘medico-legal mafia’ flourishing at the hospital made by RPS Bajwa, a former Punjab Police Academy official.

Health Secy orders probe

Secretary Health (Punjab) Satish Chandra admitted that he had recieved a complaint on the MLR mafia at Lord Mahavira Civil Hospital in Ludhiana. “I will immediately ask the Civil Surgeon to conduct an inquiry into the matter and submit a report at the earliest. We will also look into the overstay of the staff at the hospital to discourage corrupt practices,” he said.

Ludhiana, May 5
In the absence of supervision by the Punjab health & family welfare department, a group of doctors - styled as the ‘medico-legal mafia’ - said to be operating at the city’s Mahavira Civil Hospital continues to be engaged in preparing fake medico-legal reports (MLRs). Most of the latter show dental injuries inflicted on the complainants, which are covered under section 326 of the IPC (voluntarily causing grievous hurt by dangerous weapons or means).

These are some of the startling allegations made by RPS Bajwa, a former deputy director of administration at the Punjab Police Academy, Phillaur, in his article titled ‘Medico Legal Mafia, A Rot From Within’ published in the academy's journal, ‘The Perspective’. The article says when patients visit the Civil Hospital’s emergency department for issuance of an MLR, they are approached by "touts" offering to get their job done quickly -for a consideration, of course.

Agreeing with him, a senior hospital employee, requesting anonymity, said: "The Ludhiana Civil Hospital gets the maximum number cases of broken teeth, legs, arms and those involving injuries caused by sharp weapons which are not real but are fabricated in the hospital departments."

"You quote a price and the touts, who include hospital sweepers, canteen boys, petty politicians, hospital nurses, pharmacists - even prostitutes, facilitate the deals”, adds Bajwa.

He says the hospital employees involved in the ‘medico-legal mafia’ are hand in glove with the canteen and cycle stand contractors as well as the police. "People from criminal gangs and land mafia call upon the hospital staff to welcome them in the hospital canteen where all deals are made under the key players who have political and administrative patronage”, he adds.

Bajwa further claims in his article that the language of a medico-legal report changes with the kind of inputs. “When favourable and predisposed mediating staff go out of their way to record the injuries for the medical officer, the ‘special clients’ are escorted to injury fabrication units. Spend some more money and get any kind of injury inflicted, faked or not, registered” he says.

On the ‘modus operandi’ of the ‘mafia’ he says the amount for fabricating injuries varies from Rs 10,000 to Rs 1 lakh.

In his article Bajwa has specifically made a chronological reference of events in the period from August 10 to 22 in 2007 in which he says “a doctor who confronted the mafia was accused by the hospital’s female employees of sexual harassment and other offences”.

Despite repeated complaints submitted to officials of the state health & family welfare department against corrupt practices allegedly rampant at the Civil Hospital, they have failed to take any action in this regard.



Goods worth Rs 25 lakh destroyed in fire
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 5
Hosiery goods worth Rs 25 lakh were gutted in Sunder Nagar late last night. About 18 fire engines were used to control the fire. The fire could be extinguished only at 9 am. No loss of life has been reported. Fluctuation in power has been cited as the reason for the incident.

According to Naresh Jain, an owner of Arihant Knitwears, said the incident took place at 1.30 am. There was a short circuit in a board and the fire spread within minutes through a cloth roll kept in the hall.

Soon, there was sparking in the main electricity poles in the street. When people saw the smoke and fire coming out of the factory, they raised the alarm. The first fire engine came on time, but it was not enough to douse the fire. The other engines came 35 minutes later, Jain stated.

“Our goods were not insured, but we would ask the Power-Com for compensation because the fire took place due to fluctuation. Stock worth Rs 3 crore was saved as the workers acted wisely,” said Ashish Jain, the other partner.

Incidents of fire have risen during summer. In the absence of fire-fighting equipment in factories, houses, commercial complexes and business houses, the incidents are on the rise.

A fireman, on the condition of anonymity, stated that 80 per cent of factories in the city were not equipped with fire-fighting systems and electricity wires in most units were old and needed to be repaired.



Dhabas told to install CCTVs
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 5
To check the rising incident of highway robberies, the District Magistrate, Rahul Tiwari, today direct dhabas and hotels to keep an account of all those visiting their eateries.

He has also directed dhaba owners who are running their business in the periphery to install CCTVs to keep a tab on anti-social elements.

Hotel owners have also been told to register their workers with the police.

The police chiefs of Jagraon and Khanna police divisions, besides administrative officials, have been asked to ensure speedy implementation of the orders.



Giving up comfort for saffron robe
Charu Chhibber
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 5
They have sacrificed lucrative careers to attain spiritual goals. When their counterparts burn midnight oil for success, they set out for the truth. Scores of energetic youths who have become devotees of International Society for Krishna Consciousness (ISKCON) choose the spiritual path over the materialistic one.

They sport the trademark “naama” on their foreheads and speak chaste English as they preach the name of Lord Krishna around the world.

The Tribune caught up with three such youths who quit lucrative careers to don saffron robes and pursue altruistic lives.

Vrindakund Das, Gadadhar Sakha and Shyam Hari Das are in town as part of a 10-member team of Lord Krishna’s devotees.

Shyam Hari Das (31) was a civil engineer with an MNC in Mumbai before he joined ISKCON seven years ago. Vrindakund Das (29) is an engineering college dropout and belongs to an affluent business family in Delhi.

“I am an engineering graduate and had been working as a lecturer at my alma mater in Allahabad before becoming one with Lord Krishna two years ago,” said 25-year-old Gadadhar Das.

Asked how their life was changed, they narrate a similar tale. A lecture by an ISKCON volunteer in college inspired Gadadhar to follow the unearthly path while it was the Bhagwadgita written by ISKCON founder Swami Prabhupada that led Vrindakund and Shyam to join the spiritual brigade.

“Initially, our families did not agree with our decision, but after sometime, they understood. We communicate with our parents even now. We are satisfied with our work and happy to devote ourselves to ISKCON,” they stated.

Shyam added: “My parents are now devotees of Lord Krishna and my younger brother, an engineer with the IBM, was recently initiated into ISKCON.”

Why did they choose to the path of sacrifice when one could lead a pious life anyway? “Living in the materialistic world among selfish people, it is not possible to devote oneself fully to Krishna,” they remarked.

Asked about marriage, they said: “No. We just want to devote our lives to Lord Krishna. If it has been destined, marriage might happen as there are no such restrictions from ISKCON,” they stated.



Urban poor to be billed for water supply, sewerage
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 5
With the recent decision by the Punjab local bodies department to charge poor households in urban areas too for water supply and sewerage services, the municipal corporation will now be able to earn substantial revenues of about Rs 10 to Rs 12 crore every year. About 80,000 families falling under the ‘urban poor’ category, who were till now exempted from paying for the facilities, will now be asked to clear their bills regularly.

MC commissioner AK Sinha told The Tribune a copy of the state government’s orders was yet to be received by civic body officials.

"However, we are definitely going to earn a huge amount of revenues annually, which can be well utilized on many developmental projects in the city. The charges have to be fixed by the department itself and we’ll implement the tariff accordingly. Presently, we are waiting for the copy of the orders", said Sinha.

It may be mentioned here that in 2007 the Akali-BJP coalition government had waived water and sewerage charges for the state’s urban poor population. The latter includes those households who reside on plots of land measuring 120 square yards or less. Ludhiana’s urban poor, estimated to number 80,000, are spread in all the four zones of the city.

According to sources close to the local bodies department, the step was taken by the state government under pressure of officials of the Jawaharlal Nehru Urban Renewal Mission. The latter felt though the department was receiving huge funds from the mission, free water was being supplied to hundreds of thousands of families in the state, the sources added.

Welcoming the move, senior deputy mayor Parveen Kumar Bansal said the MC was already trying to send metered bills for water supply to the city’s poorer residents as hundreds of litres of water was being wasted.



MC swings into action, removes encroachments
Tribune News Service

Akalgarh Market

36 counters and tents

Shivpuri Market

25 roadside vendors and coolers

Purani Sabzi Mandi

Four rehris, 18 boards and shutters

Chaura Bazaar

27 roadside vendors

AC Market

Nine two-wheelers impounded

Ludhiana, May 5
The tehbaazari wing of the Ludhiana Municipal Corporation today removed encroachments from various parts of the city. Assistant commissioner Vinod Sharda said roadside vendors, tents, two-wheelers parked haphazardly on congested roads were removed.

The drive started from the AC Market-Calibre Plaza and covered the interior parts of the Ghanta Ghar Chowk, outside the old office of the LMC, Chaura Bazaar and Akalgarh Market. Around 30 workers, including inspectors, superintendents and cops were a part of the anti-encroachment team.

Tarlochan Singh, a commuter at Chaura Bazaar, welcomed the move and said: “It was a long-awaited step. Authorities should make sure that the encroachers do not come again.”

MC councillor Paminder Mehta, however, said the drive should be undertaken seriously. “The wing lacks workers and small vehicles that could go in the congested areas of the city. The drive has failed miserably in Chaura Bazaar and Mata Rani Chowk as encroachers resurface after 15-20 minutes of the drive. There needs to be a permanent solution to the problem. Huge penalty should be imposed on defaulters and if the problem still persists, they should be booked under the law,” said Mehta.



Clean drinking water a distant dream
Out of 147 samples taken from rural and urban areas, 83 fail quality test

Anshu Seth
Tribune News Service

Even as city residents face water shortage, the commodity flows freely in Ludhiana
Even as city residents face water shortage, the commodity flows freely in Ludhiana on Wednesday. Photo: Inderjeet Verma

Ludhiana, May
Despite the monthly review meetings convened by the Ludhiana Deputy Commissioner, the administration has failed to ensure supply of clean drinking water to the people in rural and urban areas of Ludhiana.

Out of the total 93 samples taken in April from the villages falling under Sahnewal, Hathur, Machhiwara, Malaud, Kum Kalan, Sudhar, Payal, Manupur, Sidhwan Bet, Payal, Manupur, Jagraon, Samrala and Pakhowal blocks, 53 have failed quality test.

Similarly, in urban areas falling under the Ludhiana Municipal Corporation, 30 out of 54 samples taken in April have failed the tests.

Officials at the civil surgeon office confirmed that the MC officials with them while collecting water samples. The department of health is a coordinator of the water sanitation committee formed by the DC. Members are drawn from the MC, the zila parishad and the water sanitation department and have to submit affidavits regarding the supply of clean drinking water, besides disposal of solid waste, prevention of sewage leakage in drinking water and cleaning of water in areas where the water table has depleted.

Ludhiana, with its history of diarrhoea, gastroenteritis, typhoid, Hepatitis A and E, has the worst water supply in the state and the departments concerned have failed to find a remedy to it. Some water samples taken in previous years even pointed towards the presence of "choliform bacteria", which was a strong indication of the mixing of fickle matter or soil in drinking water.

Apprehending another gastroenteritis outbreak in the slums of Ludhiana this summer, city doctors feel that the authorities concerned should be held responsible for supplying contaminated water in rural as well as urban areas. "Taking water samples every month is a futile exercise till the DC fixes the responsibility followed by action against the nonchalant officials and employees," said doctors.



Energy Conservation
CICU gives tips to PSEB
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 5
Members of the Chamber of Industrial and Commercial Undertakings (CICU) yesterday held a meeting with PS Gill, chief engineer (central zone), Punjab State Electricity Board, regarding power cuts.

Avtar Singh, general secretary, and Upkar Singh, joint secretary, of the CICU gave some suggestions to the chief engineer to save energy for uninterrupted power supply to the industry and domestic consumers.

They suggested that the streetlight points should be reduced to half, all the decorations should be banned and shops should be ordered to shut down at 8 pm.

They suggested that the maintenance of the 11 KV/LT lines and distribution transformers should be done before the start of the paddy season, the overloaded transformers should be replaced with those having higher capacity or new distribution transformers should be erected to avoid breakdowns and burning of transformers. They said that there should not be any power cuts during night and early morning to avoid scarcity of water.

"A permanent and well-in-time schedule of power supply should be made and publicised and the industry in the mixed used land area should be given connections without compelling them for further NOCs from the Municipal Corporation and the PPCB,” said Avtar Singh.



Tribune Impact
MC asks BSNL to redo raised manholes
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 5
Taking cognisance of a report “Raised manholes pose danger” published in these columns on Wednesday, the Ludhiana Municipal Corporation has shot off a letter to the BSNL to reconstruct the same.

Ludhiana Tribune had highlighted that raised manholes on Hambran Road, starting from Kali Ma Temple to Arya College, were posing danger to commuters and motorists.

In a letter to the general manager, BSNL, the executive engineer of the O & M cell of the MC (Zone D) has said the manholes were about six inches above the road level. The level of the road must be taken care of and the raised manholes should be constructed. The BSNL would be held responsible for any mishap due to raised manholes, the letter mentioned.

Talking to The Tribune, MC Commissioner AK Sinha said the manholes were being constructed by the BSNL after laying telephone cables. “The raised manholes pose threat to commuters and they need to be taken care of,” he added.



Pituitary tumour removed using endoscope
Kuldip Bhatia

Ludhiana, May 5
A team of doctors from the department of neurosurgery and ENT at Christian Medical College and Hospital (CMCH) successfully removed a pituitary tumour using an endoscope.

Jaspal Kaur (45) was suffering from headache for three years and treatment by many doctors during this period had failed to provide any relief. She was referred to the CMCH where her MRI report revealed a pituitary tumour (adenoma). Doctors advised her an endoscopic removal of the tumour through the nose.

According to doctors, a pituitary tumour is an abnormal growth in the pituitary gland, the part of the brain that regulates the body's balance of hormones. This tumour can produce symptoms like headache, lethargy, nasal drainage, nausea and vomiting, besides problems with the sense of smell, visual changes, double vision, drooping eyelids and visual field loss.

If diagnosed early, the prognosis is usually excellent. However, in cases of delayed diagnosis, even a non-functioning tumour can cause problems if it grows large enough to press on the optic nerves, the brain, or the carotid arteries (the vessels that bring blood to the brain),” said doctors.

Most commonly, pituitary tumours are removed through the nose with the use of operating microscope, which involves making an incision in the nose or inside the mouth. This causes more discomfort to the patient. Using an endoscope minimises trauma to the nose and allows more complete removal because of improved visuals and access to the tumour, they said.

"In the unique procedure carried out in this case, typically the endoscope was introduced through one nostril and specially designed instruments were introduced through the opposite nostril. This was done by an interdisciplinary team composed of ENT specialists and neurosurgeons. The endoscopic surgery for Jaspal Kaur was successful,” said doctors.

The operating team was led by Dr Sarvpreet Singh Grewal and Dr Jacob E Mathew from the department of neurosurgery along with Dr Ashish Verghese from the department of ENT.



Commercial flights likely from May 13
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, May 5
The much-awaited commercial flights from Ludhiana to Delhi are likely to start operating from May 13. This was disclosed by a high-level delegation of Air India to the local MP and the national spokesperson of the AICC, Manish Tewari, which met him in his Delhi office today.

A spokesperson said the commercial flights would coincide with the completion of Tewari's one year as the Ludhiana MP.

Giving details, the spokesperson said: “It would be a daily flight between Ludhiana and Delhi. On Tuesday, Thursday, Saturday and Sunday, the flight will take off from Delhi at 11 am and arrive here at 12.15 pm. On its return journey, the flight will take off from Ludhiana at 12.35 pm and land at Delhi at 1.50 pm.”

On Monday, Wednesday and Friday, the flight will be extended up to Pathankot. On these days, it will depart from Delhi at 11 am and land in Ludhaina at 12.15 pm. It will then take off for Pathankot at 12.35 pm. and land there at 1.15 pm. The flight will leave Pathankot at 1.35 pm, reach Ludhaina at 2.15 pm. It will take off from Ludhiana at 2.35 pm and land at Delhi at 3.50 pm,” he added.

Till June 30, 2010, the fare for one-way journey between Ludhiana and Delhi will be around Rs 2,430 inclusive of all taxes, the spokesman said, while quoting the Air India officials.

It will be after a gap of over a decade that commercial flights will start operating between Ludhiana and Delhi from Sahnewal airport.



Lineman electrocuted
Our Correspondent

Raikot, May 5
A lineman working at the Pakhowal subdivision of Powercom was electrocuted while repairing high-tension cables at the nearby Barundi village here today. The high-tension cables passing near the village had gotten loose and lineman Guljar Singh (56), a local resident, along with assistant lineman Prem Singh had gone to the village to tighten the cables.

JE Mewa Singh of Dangon village and posted at Pakhowal was also present at the scene.

Sources said Mewa Singh, who was reportedly drunk at that time, failed to take mandatory permission to disconnect the power supply in the lines to undertake the repair work. He went to the Latala grid to switch off the power supply himself.

However, he switched off the rural line instead of turning off power to the 24-hour urban supply line where repairs were being undertaken.

The employees carried out the repair work unmindful of the presence of power in the lines.

The main repair job was carried out by Prem Singh.

After completing the job, Guljar Singh climbed atop a pole to slacken the rope used to stretch the lines and accidentally came in touch with the high-tension cables, suffering an electric shock that killed him on the spot.

The police has registered a case on the statement of Prem Singh.

Pakhowal SDO Kewal Singh said he had got the information about the incident and would take action against the erring employees after conducting an inquiry.

Guljar Singh is survived by his wife, two sons and a daughter.



SGB Home adopts abandoned baby girl
Our Correspondent

Mullanpur Dakha, May 5
The SGB Home, a body that takes care of abandoned children, at Dham Talwandi Khurd, near here, has adopted a girl child abandoned by her parents at Gill village, near Ludhiana.

The newborn was found abandoned in the fields on the outskirts of the village in the morning of April 30 by Tej Kaur.

The baby was around six months old. Tej Kaur, on hearing the cries of the baby, found her draped in white clothes.

She brought the matter to the notice of village sarpanch Avtar Singh, who further informed the in-charge of the Marado police post under the Ludhiana Sadar police station.

The local police, after getting the child medically examined, registered a DDR. As the parents of the child could not be traced, the police informed Ludhiana Deputy Commissioner Rahul Tewari.

Ludhiana district social security officer Inderpreet Kaur acting on the orders of the director, social security department (women and children), Punjab, and Tewari handed over the baby to the Swami Ganganandji Bhuriwale (SGB) International Foundation of Dham Talwandi Khurd, a nodal agency for adoption of child approved by Punjab and Central government.

Jasbir Kaur, the president of the NGO along with its secretary Kuldeep Singh, principal Ramanjot Kaur and Surinder Kaur took the possession of the child.



Dust storm brings respite from heat
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 5
City residents got some respite from the sweltering heat following a dust storm that hit the city around 4 pm today. Traffic on the roads was disrupted for almost an hour as two wheeler-riders had to take refuge under trees and sheds.

The maximum temperature recorded today was 40.6 °Celsius and minimum temperature was 28.4 °Celsius, which was almost one degree more than the maximum and minimum temperatures recorded yesterday.

“It was quite hot and humid since morning and we were really hoping that it would rain. Though there was no rain, the dust storm followed by clouds came as in a relief from the otherwise sunny day,” said Raghav Rao, a marketing executive.

However, the dust storm added to the problems of government employees on census duty. A teacher on duty rued: “It was very difficult to carry out the survey in the dust storm and asking someone for a shelter was even more difficult.”

In spite of the dusty conditions, roadside vendors carried on with the sale of their eatables as usual. Oblivious to the prevailing conditions, people were seen buying cut fruits and kulchas from such vendors.

Hoping a further fall in the night temperature, a group of students studying at a city college had planned a get together at a farm house, believing that the weather was just right for a barbecue.



Paddy seedling growing banned till May 10
Our Correspondent

Mullanpur Dakha, May 5
The Punjab government and the agriculture department has banned the growing of paddy crop seedlings before May 10 and replantation of paddy seedlings (paniri) by June 10.

Dr Yadwinder Singh Chhina, district agriculture officer, Ludhiana, said the decision had been taken to save the depleting groundwater level.

Dr Amandeep Singh, agriculture development officer, said the ruling would will be effective throughout the state.

He said it was better for both farmers and the crop and in case of violation of the order, strict action would be taken against the offender under the Punjab Preservation of Sub Soil Water Act, 2009.

He said the Act was formulated to save the depleting groundwater level because of excess exploitation for irrigation.

Dr Chhina said before the deadline set by the government, the crop consumed water at an extraordinarily high rate whereas the after the deadline there was a high probability of monsoon coming in with a major part of irrigation being taken care of by rains.



Labourers made aware of rights
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, May 5
The local sub-divisional courts in association with the Jagraon Bar Association held a seminar-cum-information session at the local grain market here today. The seminar was held under the aegis of the Punjab Free Legal Services Authority on the directions of the Punjab and Haryana High Court. The court had directed the courts to hold the seminar from May 1 to 7. Under the guidance of District and Sessions Judge SP Bangar, Justice JS Marook along with Justice Madam Girish and Justice Ravi Inder Singh raised awareness among labourers at the grain market about their rights and duties under the prevailing Acts.

The labour community and members of the economically backward classes were also told about the free legal services provided by their authority. RS Toor, former president, Jagraon Bar Association, Preetinder Kaushal, vice-president, Jagpal Singh Buttar, Ranjit Singh Roomi and other speakers talked about the rights of labourers and facilities provided to them under various schemes.



Grewal is PAU employees’ front chairman
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 5
A meeting of the executive members of the PAU Employees’ United Front was held today under the leadership of Assa Singh Pannu. Ranjodh Singh Grewal was unanimously declared the new chairman of the united front.

The post of chairman had fallen vacant after the removal of Avtar Singh. The meeting was attended by Harbans Singh Mundi, president PAU Employees’ Union, and Avinash Kumar Sharma, general secretary of the union.

Grewal said he would work towards the unity of both groups and strive towards fulfilling the demands of employees.

The other members who attended the meeting were Lakhwinder Singh Sandhu, Charanjit Singh Sekhon, Harish Kumar, Tarsem Singh , Mandeep pal Singh, Mehal Singh, Yadwinder Singh, Remesh Kumar, Pritam Singh Gill, Gurwinder singh, Parveen Kumar Bandha, Bikker Singh, Jasbir Singh, Kashmir Singh, Sarbjit Singh Parget Singh and Gurmail Singh.



Students given warm send-off
Our Correspondent

Doraha, May 5
Junior students organised a farewell party for their seniors of batches BCA (VI), BBA (VI) and MBA (IV) at DIMT here today. Chairman Sukhpal Singh was the chief guest. The party began with the recital of a shabad.

Students performed cultural items to mesmerise the audience.

Seniors competed against each other for Mr and Ms Farewell titles. They participated in modelling and catwalk contest.

The Mr Farewell crown was won by Ashish Bhanot (BCA-VI) while Miss Farewell crown was bagged by Gurpreet Kaur (MBA-IV).

The “Best Personality” title was won by Rishu (MBA-IV), while “Ms Charming” title went to Priyanka (MBA-IV).

Director Dr RK Lekhi addressed the outgoing students and exhorted them to do well in future.

Later, Rishu (MBA-IV) presented the vote of thanks.



Foundation Day
Our Correspondent

Doraha, May 5
The 28th foundation day of Guru Nanak Model Senior Secondary School was celebrated with enthusiasm today. Four teachers who had completed 25 years of service in the school were honoured on the occasion.

Five students who brought laurels to the institution in various intra and inter-school competitions were also honoured.

Prizes were distributed among students who got merit and excelling grades in divinity exams organised by Sikh Missionary College. A paper reading competition was also organised.



From Schools and Colleges

Declamation contest

Ludhiana: The 17th inter-school declamation contest was organised by Nehru Sishant Kendra Trust in the memory of Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru. The contest was held in three languages - English, Hindi and Punjabi - and 54 students from 27 schools vied with each other for the Nehru Championship Trophy. Students expressed their views on burning issues like world peace, modern technology and ecology, highly educated youth and superstitions. Nehru Sishant Kendra secretary and Sat Paul Mittal School governing council member Bipin Gupta was the chief guest.

Mother’s Day

Kindergarten students of GRD Academy, Ludhiana, celebrated the Mother’s Day here on Wednesday to honour mothers and motherhood by holding a get-together. The programme started with the lighting of the traditional lamp. Mothers along with their children played many fun-filled games. LKG children and their mothers played peeling-the-toffee wrapper, musical chairs, ball and bucket and dressing-up the child games. Nursery students and their moms participated in catching the cushion, biscuit fetching, grapes and tooth picks games. The UKG students and their mothers enjoyed memory game, making garland, making tail with clips and binds game. The mothers displayed their style in the modelling round. Principal Aneeta Kundra dwelled on the role of mothers in the early years of education of young children. She appreciated junior wing coordinator Printt and kindergarten teachers for organising the programme.

Investiture ceremony

Nankana Sahib Public School, Gill Park, has formed the students’ council for 2010-11. The aim is to cultivate administrative skills in students. Harinderpal Singh of class XII and Arshdeep Kaur of class XII science were elected head boy and head girl, respectively. Bhavsimran Singh and Harmanpreet Kaur were elected sports captain, boys and girls, respectively. Principal Harmeet Kaur Waraich announced the winners and congratulated them. Students took a pledge to work for the overall development of the school.


An inter-class debate was organised by Sanatan Vidya Mandir Senior Secondary School, Civil Lines, for students of classes VII to XII here on Wednesday. OP Arora, director of NM Jain Senior Secondary School, and Jyoti Takkar, principal, SD Girls’ Senior Secondary School, were the chief guests as well as judges. The programme started with the lighting of the ceremonial lamp followed by a Saraswati vandana and mantra recitation. Around 50 students divided into four teams participated in the debate.

Free IIT coaching

The Bhai Jaitajee Foundation, headquarters in Delaware, USA, in association with Ramanujan School of Mathematics (RSM), Patna, has announced fund and support to eligible underprivileged children of Punjab to join “Super 30” and regular programmes of the RSM. “Super 30” is a residential programme of the RSM that provides free tuition, board and lodging to students chosen by means of screening tests. The programme will help poor but brilliant children from Punjab villages to enter IITs.


The Indian Society for Technical Education (ISTE) Faculty Chapter of Guru Nanak Institute of Management and Technology (GNIMT), Model Town, organised a faculty development programme. Preety Menon, faculty member of GNIMT, delivered a talk on “Don’t lose your mind, lose your weight”. She laid stress on diet and dieting and gave tips on keeping fit. Dr (Col) HS Singha, college director, said the programme was a regular feature in the institute wherein all faculty members delivered talks to the their colleagues on general and professional topics.


Dance students of Government College for Women were handed over Rs 10,000 here on Wednesday by college’s officiating principal Neelam Sharma. The money was awarded by Punjab Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal during the state sports tournament in which the team had won the best performance honours. Sharma appreciated the achievements of the dance department.


Quest Infosys’ Regional Centre of Punjab Technical University, Jalandhar, under the distance education programme, organised a seminar on “Career path” here on Wednesday. The seminar was organised for students of the PTU Learning Centre, Cyberstar Infoech. The seminar commenced with a welcome speech by Umesh Sharma, director of Cyberstar InfoTech, Ludhiana. Resource person Puneet Pahwa, manager, training, Met Life India Limited, gave tips on career. Heera Kamboj, placement officer; Neeraj Sharma, regional manager Quest Infosys; DS Sekhon, president, PTU DEP Associates; Harinder Kanda CEO, Quest Infosys; also spoke on various aspects of career development.

Group dance

Phillaur: DRV DAV Centenary Public School organised a house-wise group dance. Students from classes VI to X participated in the contest and presented a colourful programme. Teachers from Kamla Nehru College For Women, Phagwara, adjudicated the show. The first prize was given to Unity House. Second prize was bagged by Honesty and Dignity Houses, while Prosperity House got the third prize. School principal Yogesh Gambhir congratulated the winners. — TNS



Villagers seek underbridge

Khamano, May 5
Irked over the refusal of the railway authorities to construct an underbridge in Bilaspur village, villagers staged a dharna and raised slogans on the under-construction railway track near here.

The protesters alleged that all their pleas to construct an underbridge have fallen on deaf ears. Residents of the area will have to cover more than 3 km to reach Khamano if the underbridge is not constructed. The affected villages include Nanglan, Bhamian, Dholewal, Dulwan, Kheri Naudh Singh, Hargana, Raipur Majri, Kalewal, Meerpur, Baur and neighbouring villages. — TNS



MC assistant commissioner shifted
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 5
The Punjab local bodies department has transferred Ludhiana Municipal Corporation assistant commissioner PS Ghuman. He will be replaced by BK Gupta from Jalandhar. BS Brar has replaced Assistant Town Planner AS Tulli.

Hemant Chabra has come as an ATP against a vacant post while executive engineer HC Salaria has been transferred to Jalandhar.



Ex-sarpanch booked for bid to occupy land
Our Correspondent

Mullanpur Dakha, May 5
A resident of Khera Bet village has accused a former sarpanch of Walipur Kalan village, near Humbran, of attempting to forcefully occupy the former’s farmland. In his complaint filed with the Ladhowal police SHO, Surjit Singh stated his grandfather had partitioned the land way back in 1991 between his two sons through a village ‘panchayat’.

He said he was now cultivating the 4.5 acres of land that his father, who died about two months ago, had owned.

“On May 2 evening when I was at home with my family, Gurjinder Singh Makkar, a former sarpanch of Walipur Kalan village, along with about two dozen youths armed with firearms and sharp-edged weapons arrived at my fields with an intention to occupy the land forcefully. Makkar even sent his servant into my fields to plough them. When my sister-in-law, Kulwinder Kaur, and I tried to confront them, the attackers attacked and injured us”, said Surjit.

He said neighbours then took him and his sister-in-law to Humbran Civil Hospital for treatment and informed the local police post about the incident. Vinod Kumar, in charge of the police post, arrived at the scene along with a police team to take stock of the situation.

A case has been registered against Makkar and the other suspects, identified as Pritam Singh, Harpreet Singh, Gurnam Singh, Balwinder Singh and Surinder Kaur, besides over a dozen unidentified assailants including three women. The case has been filed under sections 447, 511, 323, 324, 354, 427, 506, 148 & 149 of the IPC and sections 25, 27 & 54 of the Arms Act. However, no arrest has been made so far.

When contacted, Makkar said he had bought the land from Pritam Singh, Surjit’s uncle. “I’m being falsely implicated by my political rivals”, he added.



Theft at Shop
Servant, accomplice held
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 5
Just two days after thieves stole Rs 4.4 lakh in cash from the safe of a shop in Lallu Mal Street, the police arrested the servant and his accomplice and recovered Rs 4.35 lakh from their possession, here today.

The accused, Om Parkash and Ram Din, both residents of Uttar Pradesh, were arrested from the Noorwala road while they were trying to flee the city along with the booty.

According to the complainant, Pawan Aggarwal, a yarn trader, Om Parkash was his old and faithful servant.

According to the police, the shop remained closed on Monday. Om Parkash along with his accomplice Ram Din hatched a plan to burgle the shop and made duplicate keys of the locks.

On the day of the crime, Om Parkesh and his accomplice opened the shop after Pawan left for home. They opened the safe, took the cash and fled.

The matter came to light when Pawan arrived at the shop on Monday morning and informed the police about the incident. The absence of Om Parkash brought him under suspicion and the police launched a manhunt to arrest the suspect.

Assistant Commissioner of Police Naginder Rana said after committing the theft, the accused had spilt the booty in half.

Om Parkash purchased a mobile phone worth Rs 5,000 from the stolen amount.

The police has recovered Rs 4. 35 lakh and the mobile phone from the possession of the accused.

Both the accused were produced in a court and were further remanded in police custody.



Suicide Bid
Ex-sarpanch, 2 others booked for abetment
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, May 5
The Dehlon police has booked three persons, including former sarpanch of Lehra village, near here, for abetting a youth of the village to commit suicide.

Paramjit Singh (25), currently admitted to Hind Hospital at Mandi Ahmedgarh following the burn injuries he sustained during the self-immolation bid, stated that his younger brother Charanjit Singh and uncle Balwant Singh were habitual drinkers and used to consume liquor at his house daily.

After their drinking sessions, they used to create nuisance, causing mental harassment to his wife and him.

He was married for over a year and her wife was six month’s prevent. He claimed that they often had altercation over the issue.

Yesterday, former sarpanch of the village Gurjit Singh, who had been siding with the accused, came to his house and forcibly took his signature on the “panchayati rajinama” (mutual agreement) with the accused.

Feeling cheated, the victim attempted to immolate himself by pouring kerosene on himself and setting himself ablaze in the afternoon.

He sustained 80 per cent burn injuries and was admitted to the Mandi Ahmedgarh hospital.

The police has booked the three accused under Sections 306 and 34 of the IPC. No arrest has been made so far.

Inquiry officer Pavitter Singh said the condition of the complainant was critical and the police was raiding the possible hideouts of the accused to make arrests.



Scooter mechanic fired upon
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, May 5
A youth fired four shots from his pistol at a scooter mechanic following a minor altercation here last evening.

Raju, a mechanic who runs his shop near the railway crossing on the Tehsil Road, said the youth, reportedly son of the contractor of the railway overbridge, had given him his scooter for repair. He had further given the scooter to a painter for the paint job.

The youth yesterday came to his shop and asked for an immediate delivery of the scooter.

The mechanic expressed his inability to do so, as the scooter was not with him. The youth then started abusing him.

During the altercation, the youth pulled out a licenced pistol, at which another person standing nearby grabbed his hand. As they grappled, four shots were fired in the air.

Jagraon SHO Pawanjit said the accused, identified as Ravideep Singh, had been booked under Section 336 of the IPC. The accused is at large.



Two held with drugs

Jagraon, May 5
The Sadar police arrested a youth along with habit-forming drugs during a routine patrol here yesterday. ASI Malkait Singh arrested Resham Singh of Lamme village at a checkpoint near Akhara village.

The accused tried to flee the scene after seeing the police but was later overpowered by the police.

On search, 1,900 tablets and five bottles of cough syrups were seized from a polybag in his possession. He could not produce any document regarding the drugs.

Similarly, ASI Nishan Singh of the Sidhwan Bet police arrested Kuldeep Singh, alias Kala, of the town along with 40 bottles of unaccounted cough syrups and 40 painkillers. The accused was also arrested during a checkpoint. Both have been booked under Sections 22, 61 and 85, NDPS Act. — OC



Man gets 1-yr jail in cheque bounce case
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, May 5
The Court of Judicial Magistrate Yukti Goyal has sentenced Ram Prashad, a resident of Preet Nagar, Ludhiana, to one-year imprisonment in a cheque bounce case. Pronouncing the verdict, the court held that the guilt of accused was proved beyond any doubt. A fine of Rs 6,000 was also slapped on the accused.

The orders came on a complaint moved by Surinder Singh, owner of Gagan Lottery, Ludhiana. The complainant had submitted before the court that the accused used to purchase lottery tickets from his shop on credit. In order to discharge his legally enforceable liability, he issued a cheque for Rs 1.4 lakh with the assurance that the same would be encashed on its presentation to his banker.

However, the cheque was dishonoured on April 10, 2004, with the remarks insufficient funds. A legal notice was sent to the accused asking him to make the payment. But he failed to do so, added the complainant.



Katoch Shield: Ropar in command
Our Sports Reporter

Ludhiana, May 4
Ropar were in commanding position against hosts Ludhiana on the opening day of the two-day match in the Punjab State Inter-District Senior Cricket Championship for Katoch Shield being played at Punjab Agricultural University, here today. Ropar made 367 runs in their first innings.

Ropar won the toss and opted to bat first. They started the proceedings on a cautious note with every batsman contributing and finally managed to put a decent total on board. Their innings lasted for 94.4 overs and they reached a total from where they could dictate the terms.

The notable contributors were: Chinton Sehgal (68), Gauravjeet Singh (56), Mayank Sharma (56), Manpreet Singh (48), Amit Saini (38 n.o), Amrinder Brar (36) and Sarwan Singh (20).

For Ludhiana, once again skipper and left-arm spinner Ankur Kakkar excelled with the ball.

He scalped six victims for 101 runs, while Luv Abhlish claimed two wickets for 51 runs and Rahul Singla grabbed two wickets for 127 runs.

At the draw of stumps, Ludhiana were 13 for 1 after 7 overs in their first innings.



Softball squads announced
Our Sports Reporter

Ludhiana, May 5
The Ludhiana District Softball Association has selected girls and boys to represent Ludhiana in the forthcoming 15th Punjab State Softball Championship scheduled to be held at Ramgarhia Education Complex, Miller Ganj, here on May 8 and 9.

The selected players will attend a coaching camp at Teja Singh Swatantar Memorial Senior Secondary School prior to their participation in the championship, according to Pran Nath Passi, honorary secretary, Ludhiana District Softball Association.

The players: Girls: Dixa Sharma, Palwinder Kaur, Tejinder Kaur, Preeti, Shelly, Sharanpreet Kaur and Shivani (Teha Singh Swatantar Memorial Senior Secondary School); Sukhdeep Kaur, Jasleen Kaur, Harjot Kaur, Shiana Arora and Rekha (RSM Senior Secondary School); Amandeep Kaur and Gurpreet Kaur (Ramgarhia Senior Secondary School); Pooja (BCM Senior Secondary School). Jaspreet Singh and Jatinder Kaur will be the coaches, while Baljinder Kaur has been named manager of the team.

Boys: Jogesh, Jatin, Abdul and Suraj (RSM Senior Secondary School); Shiv Kumar, Chander Shekhar, Kamalpreet Singh, Ravinder Singh and Amit Hans (Ramgarhia Senior Secondary School); Karandeep Singh and Amandeep Singh (Teja Singh Swatantar Memorial Senior Secondary School); Jaspreet Singh and Manpreet Singh (GNIP School); Tarandeep Singh (GNM Senior Secondary School); Ankit (BCM Senior Secondary School). Onkar Singh and Kulwant Kaur have been appointed coaches, while Sunil Kumar will be the manager of the team.



Basketball trials on May 8
Our Sports Reporter

Ludhiana, May 5
The District Basketball Association (DBA), Ludhiana, will hold trials to select the district youth basketball squads (boys and girls) at Guru Nanak Stadium on May 8 from 3 pm. DBA general secretary Teja Singh Dhaliwal said players born on or after January 1, 1994 will be eligible for the trials.

They have been advised to bring their age-proof certificates. The players will represent Ludhiana in the Punjab Youth Basketball Championship, scheduled to be held between May 11 and 14 at Mansa.



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