L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


18 candidates withdraw nominations
139 left in the poll fray in Ludhiana district
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 16
Eighteen candidates withdrew their nominations in the district from the electoral battle on the last day of the withdrawal today. Now, a total of 139 candidates are in the fray for the coming Assembly elections in Punjab on January 30.

According to information, maximum candidates have withdrawn from Samrala, Atam Nagar, Ludhiana Central, Dakha and Jagraon constituencies (three candidates from each), while one candidate each withdrew from Khanna, Ludhiana East and Ludhiana South. A majority of them are Independent candidates. No prominent candidate reportedly withdrew his/her nomination.

Rebel Cong councillors toe party line

Tall claims by rebel Congress councillors that they will not withdraw their nomination papers fell flat after Ashok Bagga from Ludhiana Central constituency withdrew. Bagga, contesting as an Independent, reportedly withdrew his nomination following the "strict warning letter" sent by the president of the PPCC Captain Amarinder Singh recently.

Ashok Bagga said: "Yes, I have withdrawn the nomination in the interest of the party." He refused to divulge further details. A Congress councillor, on the condition of anonymity, disclosed, "They cannot afford to go against the party. Though each of them had claimed that they will resign from the party if Surinder Dawar's ticket was not cancelled, nobody had the courage to do so. The Captain had sent two letters in the past three days, which gave a strong and strict warning to the rebels. So, Bagga withdrew his nomination today."


Candidates arranging bhoj/feast to bear expenses: Election Commission
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 16
The Election Commission of India (ECI) has made it very clear that the expenditure on the community functions will be treated as election expenses of a candidate and will be added to his account only if the candidate attends such functions to woo the voters or organises such functions.

The instructions say, "If any contesting candidate attends some community kitchen (in whatever name has been called), either organised by him or by any other person to entertain the electors, expenses will be borne by the respective candidate."

At the same time, the EC clarifies that the above instruction does not apply to community kitchens/langars etc organised by the religious communities with their religious institutions as a customary practice or the bhoj/feast offered by any person (other than the candidate) in the normal course to celebrate any occasion like marriage, death etc. The expenses incurred on such community kitchens (langar, bhoj, feast etc) will not be included in the election expenses of the candidate, provided that the "candidate participates therein in the normal course as a normal visitor".

In the context of THE above instruction, a doubt had been raised to participation of candidates in the community kitchens organised by regional communities in their religious institutions as a matter of customary practice and the bhoj or the feast etc offered as a matter of social practice following a ritual ceremony like marriage, death etc.

An official said, " The EC has also ensured that the candidate does not make any financial contribution for arranging such community kitchen etc and no political campaign in any manner is undertaken at such community kitchen. It is not that candidates can arrange the feast and get away with that by wooing the voters, the expenses will be added to their accounts that should not exceed Rs 16 lakh."



Heating arguments over poll symbols
Puneet Pal Singh Gill
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 16
Heated arguments were witnessed during the allotment of election symbols for independent candidates from the Atam Nagar constituency. It is learnt that some of the independent candidates, including Simarjit Singh Bains, were demanding same election symbols, due to which the returning officer PS Ghuman had to go for the lottery system for allotting the election symbol.

Rebel Akali and now Independent candidate Simarjit Singh Bains had applied “candle” as his first preference, “sewing machine” as second preference and “letterbox” as third preference. Similarly, there were other candidates, who had demanded “candle” as their symbol as first preference. But the Election Commission does not offer “candle” as an election symbol, in fact it’s “candles”. That is why, none of those candidates got this symbol.

Kamaljit Singh Karwal, a close aide of Simarjit Singh Bains, alleged that some of the senior leaders were backing some dummy candidates, who are contesting as independents. “After those candidates came to know about our preference of election symbols, they also applied for the same. That is why, we had to go in for the lottery system for getting an election symbol,” informed Karwal.

Simarjit Singh Bains, who has got “letterbox” as his election symbol, said that election symbol matters for those candidates who don’t have mass appeal. “I am contesting election as per the wishes of my area residents and so for me, election symbol does not matter. People would vote for me on whichever symbol I contest the elections,” said Bains, while speaking to The Tribune today.

Sources close to Bains brothers informed that both Simarjit and Balwinder were trying to get same election symbols. “But now both of them have got different symbols. While Balwinder Singh Bains would be contesting on “Torch” symbol from Ludhiana South constituency, Simarjit would be contesting on “Letterbox” from Atam Nagar constituency,” informed sources.



13 Observers to watch violations
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 16
There are 13 observers in Ludhiana district who shall be keeping an eye on the run-up to the January 30 polls. Apart from five expenditure observers and three police observers, who have been entrusted the task of specifically monitoring expenditure and security issues, five general observers have been sent to the district by the ECI, who shall be monitoring the overall poll scenario and the preparations of the district administration and police officials for the elections.

The General Observers have also been asked by the ECI to keep a watch on the Model Code of Conduct violations, paid news and other such related expenditures by candidates, visits of star campaigners, deployment of forces, randomisation of poll staff and EVMs, training and placement of micro- observers and similar such important activities. With such micro-management and supervision of elections by the ECI, the poll process is expected to pass of peacefully.



Wives take to campaigning
Tribune Reporters

Ludhiana/Khanna/Jagraon January 16
Tives of many candidates have left their kitchens and are on election campaign in the area in support of their husbands. Kamlesh Kaur, wife of Lakhbeer Singh Lakha, the Congress candidate from Payal constituency, started campaign in favour of her husband about four days ago. Busy in visiting one village after another, she has been telling the voters as to how her husband can be “beneficial” for the area as the MLA.

Mandeep Kaur, daughter-in-law of SAD candidate, Charanjeet Singh Atwal, from the same area is trying to canvass in favour of her father-in-law. DP Maur, PPP candidate from Ludhiana West constituency, said: "My wife Prem Maur, is though busy with her teaching job, she does some canvassing for me just by calling some known people and sometimes by visiting the nearby areas."

Mamta Sharma, wife of Bharat Bhushan Ashu, who is also Congress councillor from ward number 49, said, "Despite incessant rainfall, I covered many areas even today like the Police Lines, the College Road. People are approachable during rainy days, although it is a little bit difficult for us to move." Ashu said, "His wife has her own strategy for canvassing and she is busy with it. I have my own way."

In Ludhiana North, Jaya Bansal, wife of Parveen Bansal, a BJP candidate from the constituency, has been on the canvassing spree for a week.

In the Khanna constituency, Gurpreet Kaur, wife of Congress candidate Gurkirat Singh Kotli, is touring Khanna and is addressing "nukud" meetings with some office bearers of Mahila Congress and some women sympathisers. She is on the campaigning spree for her husband and has been to Model Town, Ward No 1, GTB Market, Bank Colony and at some other areas and is appealing to people to vote for her husband.

On the other hand, Kirandeep Kaur, wife of PPP candidate Gurpreet Singh Bhatti, has also been holding meetings in the city to gain support for her husband. She has also been holding meetings at Narotam Nagar, New Narotam Nagar, Bhattian and at some other places in the city. Narinder Kaur, wife of Congress rebel candidate Bhalinder Singh Bhandal, has also joined her husband for the campaign. She has addressed people and held meetings at Manak Majra, Ward No 10, College Colony and some other places.

In the Jagraon Constituency (reserved), Ranbir Kaur, the wife of SAD-BJP candidate, has also become the talk of the town as she has started campaigning for her husband SR Kaler.

She has been visiting door to door in various villages of the constituency and appealing the voters to cast their votes in favour of her husband. In particular she is appealing to female voters promising of development and providing better basic amenities.



City youth killed in Athens in December
Was killed for money, alleges family
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 16
There seems to be no end to the rising incidents of killing of youths of Indian origin abroad. In the latest incident, parents of 26-year-old Rajgurdeep Singh, alias Happy, who was found dead in an industrial shed in Athens, Greece, on December 11 last year, have alleged that their son was killed for money.

Nearly 20 days after the cremation of Happy, his father Hari Singh has shot a letter to the Union Minister for External Affairs to press the Greece authorities for a probe into the death of his son.

A pall of gloom persists at their residence at Karnail Singh Nagar near Pakhowal Road as near and dear ones could still be spotted visiting the bereaved family to express condolences.

Manjeet Kaur, mother of Happy, rues the day when her son left for Georgia on a study visa in 2009.

"Soon after visiting Georgia, he met some youths from Punjab and befriended them. The group then met an immigration agent and managed to sneak into Greece," she said.

Happy was working in a farm in Greece and used to speak to the family at regular intervals.

It was on December 5 when he last spoke to the family. "As his voice was choked, I could make out that something was wrong. I tried to ask him, but his friends, perhaps, disconnected the phone. That was the last time I spoke to my son," moaned Manjeet.

The family alleged that Lakhwinder Singh, a friend of Happy, killed their son for money. They further claimed that Happy wanted to return home, as due to recession in Europe, there were not enough jobs.

Showing a receipt, Hari Singh said on November 29, they transferred Rs 20,000 in the account of Lakhwinder Singh Mahey, a friend of the victim, so that Happy could buy an air ticket and return to the country.

"I believe money might have led to the murder of my son. His decomposed body was found from an industrial building, 59 km away from Athens," said Hari Singh, who is an industrial worker in Abu Dhabi. The family expressed anguish over the apathetic attitude of the Greek authorities.

He said, "Thanks to the gurdwara authorities in Athens, we have been able to get the body of our son. It were the gurdwara authorities, who arranged for sending the body from Athens."

He said, "The death has become a murder mystery for lack of evidence. My son was missing for nearly a week, but the youths did not divulge this information to the police. The body of my son kept lying in the industrial building for nearly a week. According to police, the premises were locked from outside, which proves that my son was killed and did not die a natural death."

The family said had Happy been alive, we would have celebrated the New Year and Lohri with him.

The loss of his mobile phone and dumping of his body at a secluded place are enough to indicate that my son was killed.

"Reports of the postmortem and laboratory tests are still awaited. We want investigation into the matter and the culprit must be punished," he said.

Avtar Singh, Jaspreet Kaur and Kuldeep Kaur, siblings of Happy, said their brother always wanted to settle in Europe, but who knew his pursuit for greener pastures would lead to their brother.



Police cremates identified body
Unidentified one lying in Civil Hospital mortuary
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 16
The city police and Civil Hospital employees are at loggerheads following a swap of two bodies. The goof-up led to the cremation of an identified body of a Chawni Mohalla resident instead of the unidentified body that is still kept at the Civil Hospital mortuary.

The matter came to light when the Kotwali police took the relatives of the deceased, identified as Rakesh Kumar (52), following the identification here last evening.

On reaching the mortuary, the police and the relatives of the deceased were shocked to know that the bodies got swapped, and the Division No 8 police took the body of Rakesh Kumar, instead of an unidentified body, and cremated it.

According to rules, an unidentified body is cremated nearly 72 hours after the autopsy.

It was on January 11 that both Rakesh and an unidentified person were sent to Civil Hospital for treatment by Division No 8 and Kotwali police. Both were found unconscious at different location of the city. Both persons died on the same day.

The relatives of Rakesh Kumar are shocked at the incident, but they refused to lodge any complaint. It is leant that Rakesh Kumar was living alone for the past 20 years following a spat.

In the meantime, the police has blamed the employees at the mortuary for shifting tags that led to the goof-up.



SAI schemes to promote sports in state
Meant for age groups 8-10, 10-12 and 12-17
Charanjeet Singh Teja
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 16
The Sports Authority of India (SAI) has introduced "Come and play" and "Akhara" under the special area games (SAG) scheme for promoting sports in the urban and rural areas of the state in which qualified sportspersons would be selected for for various sports competitions.

The scheme has been classified into three age groups : 8-10, 10-12 and 12-17. Children from these age groups will participate in the competitions.

These players will be further selected for district and state-level competitions, who will be trained by the SAI coaches. SAI, Ludhiana Centre, in charge Harbans Singh said before this scheme, we were running residential and non-residential schemes in the centre.

In the Akhara scheme, the SAI would include wrestling, for which a centre each had been opened in various districts in which Padamshree Kartar Singh Akhara, Amritsar, Pritam Wrestling Club, Ajnala, and Wrestling Akhara, Tarn Taran, are the prominent ones.

“In these Akharas, youths from rural areas are practising and they will participate in national and international competitions,” said Harbans.

Under these schemes, the players who are studying in government schools would pay Rs 15 per month as their fees and those who are studying in the open system would pay Rs 45 per month.

The SAI would provide sports kits, infrastructure and free coaching to the selected players.

Trainees under the residential scheme are getting Rs 125 as their per day diet, Rs 4,000 for sports kits, Rs 3,000 for sports competititon exposure, Rs 1 lakh for medical insurance, Rs 1,000 for monthly education and Rs 300 for medical allowances. The non-residential scheme (day boarding) provides Rs 3,000 to trainees for competition exposure and Rs 4,000 for sports kits are given by the SAI.



assembly elections
Constituency Watch: khanna
khanna in need of major spruce-up
Minna Zutshi
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 16
A town in Ludhiana district that is vying for the status of district, Khanna has its share of development-related issues. The areas falling in ward numbers 3, 4 and 5 here are the worst affected. Insanitary conditions, roads in bad shape. These areas are in dire need of development.

Khanna was earlier a reserved constituency; with post delimitation, it has been declared a general constituency. Anti-incumbency has been a key factor in this constituency. Both the Congress and the SAD (B) have won the assembly polls every alternate elections.

Fact file

Total electorate: 1,40,571

Male : 74,138

Female: 66,433

Politics Wise

  • Veteran Akali leader Jagdev Singh Talwandi's son Ranjit Singh Talwandi is the SAD (B) candidate.
  • Former Punjab chief minister Beant Singh's grandson, Gurkirat Singh Kotli, is the Congress candidate.
  • The Sanjha Morcha (PPP) candidate is Gurpreet Singh Bhatti.
  • In 2007 Assembly polls, Bikramjit Singh Khalsa from the SAD (B) had defeated the Congress candidate Shamsher Singh Dullo.
  • In 2002, Dullo's wife Harbans Kaur had won the elections as the Congress candidate.



Women care for day-to-day issues
Tribune News Service

Khanna, January 16
There is no hint of politics when these women talk of the battle of ballot. It is only regarding the issues that they are worried about. These issues are 'here and now', the issues which affect their lives every day.

"The bus…," begins Mahinder Kaur. These two words are enough to trigger a 15-minute non-stop grievance session in which a group of women from Ismailpura village in Khanna participated willingly.

It is a non-descript village, it means around 450 votes for a candidate. "What you find missing here, you'll find missing in many other villages of Khanna," says a young woman, rather tentatively.

Again, it is the bus that is the take-off point. "The connectivity of this village to the rest of Khanna is poor. We have bus service to Khanna only at 7 am and 9 am," says Mahinder Kaur.

"You're talking about the bus service that, at least, exists. Don't you know that our village has no health centre?" says in Parminder Kaur, Mahinder’s relative.

"There's no veterinary clinic," trails off a voice.

"Let's talk about animals later. When humans don't have the health facilities, why harp on vet clinics," says a dissenting voice.

"I Wish there were at least a high school for girls," says Sanpreet, a class 12 student who has to travel at least 30 km every day from her home to school.

"More families would send their daughters to high school if it does not entail much travel," says Ranjit Kaur.

These women don't have much idea about concepts like female literacy or women's rights. But they are very much aware of what their village needs.

For the politicians, irrespective of their party, the women have only one verdict: "During the time of the polls, they suddenly make an appearance. But once the polls are over, they do the vanishing act."



Businessmen turn to currency transfer companies
Manav Mander
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 16
While the businessmen in the city are passing through tough times owing to limit on carrying cash due to the implementation of Election Code of Conduct, it is the currency transfer companies that are making quick bucks.

The Election commission is tightening its noose around the people to check the flow of cash during the elections. But people have devised slip routes to save themselves from the eyes of police parties that patrol the city.

People, mostly businessmen, are now days taking the help of money transfer companies for carrying out transactions. As many as 27 police teams in the city are keeping a check over the flow of cash in the city.

"We have been left with no other option but to making transactions through money exchanges. It is not that we are withdrawing money and giving it to the candidates or political parties; we have several deals to make like payments to parties, salaries to workers, buying raw material etc," said Randeep Singh, a businessman dealing in hosiery.

Mangal Sen Aggarwal, a trader, said prescribing a limit for carrying cash has proved death knell for the industry. Trade and industry in the city is already going through a rough phase and now with the implementation of the code of conduct, it is suffering more.

"We have to make transactions in one day. So I think transferring the money through money exchanges is a better idea. Giving the payments in installments is not a viable idea.

If the cash is confiscated by the police then we would have to make numerous rounds of the income tax department for getting our money back," he added.

Another businessman, Akhil Sood, said: "There was no points of carrying cash in public due to code of conduct.”



Poll staff pays refreshment expense from their pocket
Jaswant Shetra

Jagraon, January 16
A large number of employees deployed on duty for the coming assembly elections had to bear their expense from their own pocket for the refreshment during the election rehearsal. The rehearsl took place at Lajpat Rai DAV College, Jagraon, yesterday.

Generally, the employees on the poll duty are provided refreshment by the administration during such kind of rehearsals. Though the local administration had made arrangements for the refreshment yet a large number of employees had to pay from their own pocket.

There were around 800 government employees who had reached for the rehearsal. Sources said the employees were charged Rs 7 per cup of tea and Rs 8 for bread pakora.

“We were provided with tea and pakoras free only once during the tea break at 12.30 pm during the rehearsal. But before that we had to spend money from our own pocket,” complained a teacher on anonymity.

The sources revealed that during the recent rehearsals too a large number of the employees had to pay from their own pocket for the refreshment.

When contacted the SDM Jagraon Isha Kalia, she maintained that the administration had made proper arrangements for the refreshment during the rehearsal.

“There is no such incident brought to my notice. Even if any employee had paid from his own pocket he or she might not be aware about the refreshment provided by the administration. Besides, if anybody had bought the eatables except those provided by the administration, he was bound to pay for that from his own pocket,” she added.



‘Reject candidates who provide liquor’
Puneet Pal Singh Gill
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 16
Senior Supreme Court lawyer HS Phoolka, talking to The Tribune yesterday, said that in the coming 15 days, liquor and poppy husk worth around Rs 300 crore would be distributed in the state. “People should either reject the candidate distributing drugs or should urge them to instead invest this money in education and health,” he said.

In view of the coming Assembly elections, the Civil Society Against Drugs yesterday organised an awareness march against distribution drugs and liquor by candidates in elections. The march was led by HS Phoolka and was attended by members of several NGOs and social organisations.

Despite the fact that it was raining, the march started from the Mini Secretariat and ended in Fountain Chowk. “We covered some distance on foot but as it was raining heavy, we decided to cover the remaining distance on our vehicles,” informed Phoolka.

This first phase of this march had started from Amritsar on January 13 and after covering almost 500 km in the state, it ended here yesterday evening. “We have got considerable amount of support from people across the state as everyone feels that distribution of liquor and drugs during elections has become more like a social evil and it should be checked. We have appealed to people that they should not vote for a candidate who distributes liquor and drugs in lieu of votes during the elections,” said HS Phoolka.

He said that the march is aimed to spread awareness amongst the voters and their group has warned all the candidates and political parties participating in elections against the distribution of drugs or alcohol for votes. He said the members of the society will cover all parts of Punjab to expose the candidates using drugs to lure voters.

During the march, awareness material and stickers were also distributed amongst the city residents.



Political parties ignoring health sector: Medical associations
Anupam Bhagria
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 16
Like past elections, this time too the political parties are ignoring the health sector. Different state level medical associations are feeling it strongly and want that coming government should come up with a good budget for the development of this sector which has always been meted out step-motherly treatment.

Talking to the Tribune, Dr Manoj Sobti, president elect of 2013 for Indian Medical Association, Punjab said, “The state is lagging behind in health facilities, particularly for the poor and marginalised. Earlier there used by be “Bhai Kanhayya Scheme" for yellow card holders, through which the poor (yellow card holders) used to get 50% concession on their treatment. This scheme was started by the Congress government but it stopped about six months ago." He further said that no one pays attention to the problem of increasing drug addiction in the state.

While Dr Hardeep Singh, president of PCMA association, Punjab, said, “None of the governments have ever kept adequate budget for the health sector. We always face problem in receiving required quantity of medicines for the needy people. It is very difficult for the poor patients to get treatment. Many posts of doctors and para-medical staff are also lying vacant. I personally feel that health sector is never taken seriously."



‘Elections to be contested on plank of good governance’
Kuldip Bhatia

Ludhiana, January 16
A section of industry here feels that the coming assembly polls in the state will be fought on the issues of good governance and development. Inderjit Singh Pardhan, chairman, Punjab Small Scale Industry Development Board, who is also the president of the Chamber of Industrial and Commercial Undertakings (CICU), today applauded the ruling combine in the state for its governance. He said the elections on January 30 would be fought on a positive agenda of all-round development.

"In only two weeks from now, over 17.5 million voters of Punjab will make their electoral choice. While the SAD (B) has taken good care of its support base in the rural areas, the BJP has done well in the cities," he claimed while asserting that the SAD campaign was hitting the Congress in right quarters and their counter attack was not innovative enough.

Accusing the Congress of ditching the Sikh community by not introducing the bill to enact the Anand Marriages Act despite promises made by the Prime Minister and the Union Law Minister, Pardhan also said that the Congress-led “corrupt” UPA government was running the country. "The coming elections would decide whether the people of Punjab want a corrupt government in the state or a good government."

"At this juncture, our target should be to highlight the achievements of state government, including setting up of new thermal plants and other major infrastructure development projects."



Seven-year-old heart patient needs help
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 16
Anil (7), son of Dev Nandan and Pano Devi, was born with one of his two pumping chambers of the heart absent. Due to this, his growth has stopped and he is constantly blue. These days he is under treatment at Christian Medical College and Hospital (CMCH).

Dr Harinder Singh Bedi, head of the department of cardio-vascular and thoracic surgery, at the prestigious CMCH said the defect if uncorrected, could be fatal as the body could not tolerate low oxygen for a long time.

He explained that the heart has two pumps - the left and the right ventricle. In Anil, there is just one. Consequently, all blood (good and bad) mixes in this pump and gets circulated.

As this is mixed blood, it is impure or blue and the whole body, including the brain, is always short of oxygen.

Dr Bedi said that children with such advanced stage of the problem are not seen as they get operated much earlier. Anil will need a major open heart surgery, where the surgeons will try and make a new heart for Anil using an imported heart lung machine. Anil’s father is a labourer and cannot afford the treatment even after a major concession by the hospital.

Any donations may be made in the name of: "Christian Medical College, Ludhiana" with Anil’s name at the back. All donations are tax exempted.

Anil wants to get better so that he can study. Dr Bedi said after surgery, Anil should be able to handle any profession of his choice.



It pays to be a kid in Ludhiana!
A survey reveals that children in city get more pocket money than kids in any other district of the country
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 16
Nitin, son of a Ludhiana-based industrialist, gets pocket money that makes many of his friends and classmates envious as they barely get about half of what he does. According to a survey, children in the city get more pocket money than kids in other districts of the country.

The results of the survey set the alarm bells ringing among parents as most were a little concerned to find their kids were flush with cash. But according to experts, giving pocket money to kids is important as they should be made to understand the value of money. In a city where mall culture is catching up, it is all the more important for children to know the value of money.

“It is necessary to make children learn the value of money before handing them out large sums of cash,” says city-based psychologist Param Saini. Children only copy the mannerisms of parents; so flaunting money would set a wrong example to their children, she says. Care should be taken to know how kids are spending the money and they should be guided accordingly.

“I give my child five hundred rupees every month and I advise him to save the money to buy the things that he wants," says Sumit Verma, a banker. “He has learnt to save money, has bought a wallet, and purchases his stationery and other things he wants. I occasionally reduce or increase the money so that he understands how to adjust accordingly," he says.



Industry told to give change of land-use certificate
CM had waived off its requirement
Manav Mander
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 16
Though the submission of the "change of land use" certificate for setting up industrial units in the approved master plan of Ludhiana has been waived off, the industry has been asked to submit the same.

A few months ago during a meeting, the Punjab chief minister had made an announcement about the waiver, but the Punjab State Power Corporation Limited (PSPCL) still asks for a no-objection certificate (NOC) from entrepreneurs.

Upkar Singh, joint secretary, Chamber of Industrial and Commercial Undertaking (CICU), said their chamber was regularly receiving representations from among the entrepreneurs that the authorities were still demanding the NOC from the District Town Planner, Ludhiana, for change of land use.

"As per the master plan map issued by the town planner, specific areas have already been shown/demarcated for the industry, still they ask for the NOC to be attached with the papers," he said.

Gautam Salariya said when he went to the PSPCL for the power connection for his new firm, which is under construction, he was asked for the NOC.



Class X student wins bronze medal in national meet
Charanjit Singh Teja
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 16
Prashant Sharma, a resident of Salem Tabri, returned with the bronze medal in the National Rural Athletic Meet held in Kolkatta, West Bengal. Prashant won the medal in the team event of 4X400 relay. The competition was organised by the Ministry of Sport and Youth Affairs. 60 players from Punjab participated in the event.

Prashant said that it was a great exposure for him as he got an opportunity to compete with athletes from the rest of the country. "I tried my best to clinch the gold medal, but unfortunately missed by a little margin," he added.

He said that the performance of Punjab team in the competition was quite satisfactory.

He said that after winning three gold medals in the State Rural Games, he was focusing on these games, and finally his objective to win a medal has been fulfilled.

Prashant is a student of class X in GMT School and he used to practice in Guru Nanak Dev Stadium. He said that a few years ago he used to participate in school games, but from last few years he is practicing athletics in a professional way, under the supervision of coach Sanjeev Sharma.

"I use to spend five hours practicing everyday.

They have a synthetic track in the stadium that is very helpful for the athletes from Ludhiana.

The infrastructure they have here is quite satisfactory."

He says that now he is focusing on the School National Games that would be held in Ludhiana next week and hopes that he would win some medals for the state.

Prashant's coach, Sanjeev Sharma said, "Prashant has full potential to become a successful athlete and if he maintains his game then he would surely attain his dream to become an international athlete."



IMC team visits CIPHET facilities
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 16
To evaluate the progress of the institute and chalking out future strategies, a meting of the Institute Management Committee (IMC) was today organised at Central Institute of Post Harvest Engineering and Technology (CIPHET) at its campus. The team members also visited the various laboratories and institute facilities.

Additional Director General (ICAR) Dr KK Singh was heading the team, which included Dr PC Bargale, Dr PG Patil, Dr Niranjan Prashad as other members. Dr Singh received information about the various projects initiated by the institute and the financial problems it faces. He showed satisfaction over state-of-the-art laboratories developed by the institute.

Giving an elaborative presentation, director CIPHET Dr RK Gupta revealed that a total of 50 research projects are going on at CIPHET Ludhiana and Abohar , including 31 with the institute’s funding. “We have developed technologies such as pomegranate aril extractor, and sunflower dehuller, and a number of high value-added products," he said. Senior Administrative Officer (SAO) KS Chauhal gave details about the financial position of the organisation to the committee.



FOSWAC seeks revamping of education, medical facilities
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, January 16
Concerned over the growing need of the UT administration to look into major issues related to the city, the Federation of Sector Welfare Association, Chandigarh (FOSWAC), has made a representation to the Advisor to the UT administrator attracting his attention towards the need of revamping the education and medical facilities in the city.

PC Sanghi, chairman, FOSWAC, said that education and health despite being on the priority list of the Government of India were not on priority list of the UT administration.

“The delay in filling posts of doctors in government hospitals, appointment of regular principals in government colleges and overstay of teachers on deputation only goes on to show the non-seriousness and insensitivity on the part of officers concerned in tackling the issues”, Sanghi said.

Through the representation FOSWAC has also highlighted the health hazard the people of the area face from the garbage processing plant at Dadu Majra. “The issue was raised before the MC polls by the political parties and it topped the agenda of everyone, however, now neither the MC nor the administration is bothered to act”, Sanghi said.

The representation mentions that due to Chandigarh’s splendid architecture, urban planning and excellent infrastructure, the city has been a much sought for place to live in, but with every passing day, it is losing its sheen and glamour on account of traffic congestion, lack of parking space,latest scheduled and unscheduled power cuts and the proposed 66.67 per cent hike in domestic power tariff at par with neighboring towns of Panchkula and Mohali, overburdening the common people of the city.



UGC gives go-ahead to research project

Doraha, January 16
A research project, proposed by Manoj Kumar Chaudhary, assistant professor and head of Nano Research Laboratory, department of Chemistry, Guru Nanak National College, Doraha, has been accepted by the University Grants Commission (UGC).

Giving information about the project, Chaudhary said that it was based on nanotechnology. “In this project I would synthesise the nanocomposites of some metal oxides which have applications in semiconducting materials, agriculture, pharmaceuticals and environmental applications”.

Dr Narinder Singh Sidhu, principal of the college, congratulated the young scientist for his endeavour and offered all possible help.




Entrepreneurship awareness workshop

Ludhiana: Ludhiana College of Engineering and Technology (LCET), Katani Kalan, is going to organise a three-day program for entrepreneurship awareness from January 18-20 at the college campus. The main objective of this program is to encourage budding engineers to look beyond seeking just a job and to adopt a more entrepreneurial approach.

The program is being organised in association with the Science and Technology Entrepreneurs Park (STEP), Ludhiana, for the final and pre-final year students of B Tech. Topics of current relevance will be discussed at the event. Presentations on Financial aspects of SSI units, including salient features of a Project Report; Technical, Commercial and Social aspects of MSM Enterprises; Historical Background of Indian Values vis-a-vis Entrepreneurship and the present scenario; Creativity and Business (Behavioral scientist's approach) will be done by Dr Naveep Aggarwal , department of business management PAU, Prof Parvinder Singh, HOD, department of management, GGN Institute of Management and Technology, Dr SB Singh former principal of GNDEC, Surendra Singh, Registrar, STEP, respectively.

Birth anniversary celebrations

The 346th birth anniversary of the 10th Sikh Guru, Guru Gobind Singh, founder of the Khalsa Panth, was celebrated with full fervor at the Guru Nanak Khalsa College for Women, Gujarkhan Campus, Model Town on Monday. The event started with prayers of Gurbani followed by kirtan by the students. Bhai Sahib Bhai Baldev Singh Bulandpuri and his Raagi Jatha from Model Town Extension Gurudwara Sahib enthralled the audience by their soulful rhythms and holy verses. Discourses on life and spirituality were done during Shabad Vichar by Giani Kulwant Singh.

Competitions of Gurbani Shudh Ucharan and Gurbani Kanth were also held in the function.Students were given away prizes and were encouraged to read, understand and apply Bani in their daily life. Jasneet Kaur (B Com II yr), Lakhwinder Kaur (BA II yr) and Anupreet (B Com I yr) won the first, second and third prize respectively in Gurbani Shudh Ucharan.

Kamalpreet Kaur (PGDMC), Savleen (BCA I yr) and Pawanmeet (B Com I yr) won first, second and third prize respectively in Gurbani Kanth Competition.

Tanpreet (BA III yr), Dilraj (BA I yr) and Jasleen (B Com II yr) won the consolation prizes for the same.

The college Principal Dr Karmjit Kaur Virdi congratulated everybody on the occasion. She encouraged the students to believe in Naam and the spirit of togetherness to excel in all the endeavors.

General secretary of the college governing body, Prof Gurbir Singh Sarna, also addressed the students on the occasion and asked them to pursue the spirit of sainthood as well as soldiership like Guru Gobind Singh to conquer the hurdles of their life.



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