L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Man dies in house collapse
Two injured, owner of house booked for negligence
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 20
A 23-year-old man was killed and two persons were injured after a dilapidated building collapsed at Anand Vihar Colony which is located near Phullanwal village on the Pakhowal road here last night. The incident took place around 10:30 pm when the three-storied building, which was owned by Lakhwinder Singh, collapsed like a pack of cards.

According to the information, Pharkhu (23), Amresh and Gollu were sleeping on the ground floor when the incident occurred. While Gollu and Amresh were rescued by the local residents, Pharkhu succumbed to his injuries. The local residents said no one had been living in the building for the past several months.

“I do not know when the trio started living in the area. I was about to sleep when I was shaken by the sudden thud and thought it was an earthquake. I came out of the house and saw other residents running in panic. One of them told me that the three-storied house of Lakhwinder Singh collapsed and three persons were buried under the debris,” said Joginder Singh, a resident of Phullanwal.

He added that no one was looking after the house and the recent rain might have led to its collapse.

It was in the morning the police was informed about the incident by the residents. After conducting the investigation the police has booked the owner of the house on charge of negligence.


Staff on poll duties, banking takes a hit
Manav Mander
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 20
Work in nationalised banks is suffering as the staff has been put on election duty. The public is facing inconvenience and is a harried a lot as their work has been put on hold. Almost the entire staff, including general managers, of a bank has been put on the election duty. Some of the bank branches even remain shut today as the entire staff had gone for election duty. The SBI branches at Sarabha Nagar and at Jagraon were closed down today for the same reason.

"I was astonished to see a notice pasted outside the bank stating that the bank branch will remain shut as the entire supervisory staff was on election duty. "How the authorities can put the entire bank staff on duty?" asked Baljinder Singh, a customer.

Saudagar Singh, bank manager of the SBI branch at Sarabha Nagar, said the supervisory staff of the bank had gone for election duty till 2 pm. It is also a duty given to us by the government so we cannot ignore it. It is just a matter of few days after which everything will be back to normal," he added.

A senior official from one of the nationalised banks said they had no other option but to follow the orders of the government.

Another customer Jasreet Kaur said today she went to her bank to operate her locker as she had to attend a wedding tomorrow but was unable to do that since most of the bank staff was attending their election duties. "Now, I am left with no other option but to wear imitation jewellery," she added.

Another PNB official on the condition of anonymity said the work in the bank is suffering as the entire staff of their branch, including the manager, had gone for election duty. "We daily see a lot of people indulging in heated arguments with the bank employees as there is no staff to attend to them. We are left with no other option but to pacify these customers as we are also helpless," he said.

We daily see a lot of people engaging in heated arguments with the bank employees as there is no staff to attend to them. We are left with no other option but to pacify these customers as we also are helpless. — A PNB official



EC appeals to fresh voters to cast vote
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 20
The Election Commission of India (EC) has appealed to first-time voters to cast their vote. District election officer (DEO) Rahul Tewari said in Ludhiana district, there were a total of 49,518 first-time voters between the age group of 18-19 years and in the Dakha Assembly constituency alone, there were highest number of fresh voters i.e. 5,316, who must cast their vote.

Giving details, Tewari said to make sure that the first-time voters must exercise their right, the EC had started a systematic programme to generate awareness among voters by the name of SVEEP (Systematic voter education and electoral participation). He elaborated that in Ludhiana district, various activities were being done for generating awareness among the voters, especially women and youth voters.

“On January 25, the Jan National Voters Day will be celebrated at all polling booths where oaths shall be administered by block-level officials (BLOs) to the electors present and election photo identity cards (EPICS) will be distributed among new voters. A district-level function will be held at the Government College for Women where various competitions will be held and prizes will be distributed,” said Tewari.

January 30 a holiday

On the day of polling, i.e. January 30, it will be a government holiday. Not only will government institutions remain closed but so will also the industry, shops and other business establishments. It will be a paid holiday for employees. In case any employer refuses to let his worker cast his/her vote and a complaint is registered to the authorities, criminal action will be taken against the employer. — Rahul Tewari, Deputy Commissioner-cum-DEO

Migrants to cast vote in one state

DEO Rahul Tewari stressed that migrants, who have got their voter cards made in two states must only cast their vote at one place (state). “It is a crime to cast a vote at two places. If found guilty, criminal action will promptly be taken against the person,” he said.



No voting, say Pakhowal residents
Shivani Bhakoo and Mahesh Sharma
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 20
The residents of Pakhowal village, near Ludhiana, have hoisted black flags outside their homes as a mark of protest and decided not to vote for any candidate in the coming Assembly elections. Besides, they have asked candidates to not come to them for seeking votes.

Sukhminder Singh, a village resident said for the past several months they had been living in hell-like conditions with puddles of stagnant water all around. "A highly influential person in the village had raised the level of the road outside his house due to which water does not drain properly. During rain, water enters homes. Despite repeated requests and appeals to the authorities concerned, no relief has been provided to the villagers. Now, we have decided not to support any candidate in the coming Assembly elections," he said.

Meanwhile, the villagers have convened a meeting to take the final decision.

At many places in Ludhiana, too, people have shown their "anger" against candidates and parties. In the Ludhiana Central Constituency, the residents of Ajit Nagar have put-up a banner appealing the candidates not to come to the area for votes. They said for the past several years, nobody had come to provide any kind of relief to the residents.

"In fact, when we tried to approach them, they were never available. Now, it is our turn. Why should they come to us asking for votes? The roads are in a miserable condition. During the rains, drinking water gets mixed up with sewage due to faulty sewerage system. We are living in hell-like conditions and certainly do not want any candidate or party to win," said Rahul, a young boy.



Tough session for students
Elections, national games take toll on studies

Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 20
Students of the government schools are considering themselves unlucky as they had to miss classes in the session. Some of the teachers, last year, were deputed to the SGPC elections due to which they missed the classes. The teachers had to attend a 10-day teacher-training session, late last year. Now the teachers have again been deputed for the Assembly Election duties. Some of the classes in the government schools have been vacated to make room for accommodation of the national players who have come from other states. With the government schools already feeling shortage of rooms, the classes are being held outdoors.

"Who do I blame for the disturbances that have been occurring this year and the loss of studies," said government school student. "I am worried that now the teachers will make a short shrift of the pending syllabus because of the shortage of time," she said.

Another student said it is their board class. Thus they need good marks to take admission in a good college. "There have been many distractions this year and our teachers have been too busy to take classes regularly for the past few months," said Gurjot.

"What can we do about it? We have to follow government instructions. We will try to complete the syllabus, although we have lost many teaching days this year. The semester exams, last year, also took away a month. So we will have to manage somehow," said a principal of a government school, requesting anonymity.

"The government needs to plan everything and pay utmost importance to education," the principal said.

We have to follow government instructions. We will try to complete the syllabus, although we have lost many teaching days this year. The semester exams last year also took away a month. — A school principal



Posters still dot atam nagar
Puneet Pal Singh Gill

Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 20
Even as the election observers have found model code of conduct violations in various parts of the Atam Nagar constituency and had ordered the election staff to remove unauthorised posters from the Shimlapuri area of the constituency, a visit to the Gill Road today revealed that several posters still dot the road and other parts of the constituency.

One can find candidates’ posters as well as hoardings in almost every nook and corner of the Atam Nagar constituency.

When SP Singh, General Observer 1, visited the Atam Nagar constituency yesterday, he witnessed a large number of posters of candidates pasted in the Shimlapuri area. These posters were of rebel Akali and now Independent candidate Simarjit Singh Bains, Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) candidate Hira Singh Gabria, Congress candidate Malkit Singh Birmi and another candidate Sukhwinder Singh Gill.

He immediately took strong notice of these violations of model code of conduct and ordered the election staff to get them removed immediately.

Interestingly, if any such poster is removed by the election staff, an amount of Rs 1.88 (cost of printing of poster) and Rs 5 per poster (cost of removing posters) is added to the expenditure of the candidate. So in a way, for every poster removed by the election staff, an amount of Rs 6.88 per poster is added to the candidate’s account.

PS Ghuman, Returning Officer for the Atam Nagar constituency, said some posters in the Shimlapuri area were removed yesterday and if any such posters were present in other parts of the constituency, we would certainly get them removed.

“Even right now our teams are removing such posters from the Chimney road and other areas of Atam Nagar. If residents of Atam Nagar constituency have any election-related complaint, they can bring it to my notice and I will see to it that action is taken against the erring candidates,” said Ghuman.



Now, kits to check milk adulteration
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 20
Various types of materials are used to adulterate milk by unscrupulous persons to get extra profit. There is a long list of such materials which include sugar, starch, glucose, salt, urea, ammoniac fertilisers, sodium carbonate and bicarbonate, sodium hydroxide, hydrogen peroxide, formalin, detergents, vegetable oils. The information was shared by Dr Amit Kumar, from the College of Dairy Science and Technology of Guru Angad Dev Veterinary and Animal Sciences University, Ludhiana.

Dr Kumar said the adulteration of milk was usually done for increasing the quantity of milk, extending its shelf life, maintaining SNF (solid not fat) and avoiding detection of sour milk. With the advent of new materials used in milk adulteration, the laboratory methods of their detection have also been developed. The methods have been made simpler and converted into kits by the National Dairy Research Institute, Karnal, and others.

Such kits are available in market and can detect five, 14 and 20 materials which are used to adulterate milk. Dr Kumar said according to the national survey on milk adulteration-2011 conducted by the Food Safety and Standards Uuthority of India (FSSA), it was reported that 81 per cent, 70 per cent and 83 per cent of the milk samples are found adulterated in Punjab, Haryana and Jammu and Kashmir, respectively. Water, glucose and SMP (skim milk powder) was reported to be present in the milk samples, especially those taken from non-packaged milk.

It may be noted that even natural milk does not conform to the FSSA standards of SNF content (minimum 8.5 per cent), so to maintain the standards many milk-processing units also add some SMP to the milk.



From colleges
Seminar on environment

Ludhiana: A public seminar on "Making Environment an Election Issue" was held in GGN Khalsa College, Ludhiana, in association with Vatavaran Ate Samaj Bachaao Morcha. Baba Balbir Singh Seechewal of the Ek-Onkar Charitable Trust and a renowned environmentalist sensitised the audience regarding pollution and the concern for keeping a healthy environment. Prof Sohinderjit Singh, president, Gujranwala Khalsa Educational Council traced the history of environmental pollution through quoting incidents from the world history. Prof Prithipal Singh Kapur, former Pro-Vice Chancellor, GNDU, stressed on the need to make the subject relevant through our education system.

First-aid training at KCW

Youth Red Cross unit, Khalsa College for Women, Civil Lines, Ludhiana, organised a first-aid training programme here on Friday. During the programme Dr Ramneet Sodhi and Dr Vinay Singal were the resource persons on the occasion. The doctors apprised the students with basics of emergency life support. The students were advised that they should learn to give first-aid to the victims of fits, heart-attack and in road accident cases. Sometimes, even a simple first-aid care helps in saving one’s life which could have been lost while waiting for the doctor or on the way to the hospital. Dr Sodhi told the students about the symptoms of heart attack, paralysis, poisoning and trauma patients. He also demonstrated them about tackling the situation. Dr Singal pointed out that in a view of rapid growth in vehicle ownership, India's road safety infrastructure is rudimentary and its trauma care capability is distressingly inadequate. One vehicle accident is reported in every three minutes.

Extension lecture

The NSS unit of Ramgarhia Girls College, Miller Ganj, organised an extension lecture on the "common health problems that women today are dealing with". The lecture was held here on Friday. Dr Triveni Saggar (MBBS, DGO) of Day Care Surgery Centre, Ludhiana, was the resource person. Addressing the students, she said the changing lifestyle or lesser body resistance; women's growing health issues are catching everyone's eyes. Though men and women have many health problems but they can affect women differently as women have some unique health requirements. Cervical cancer is the second most common form of cancer among the women. Dr Triveni highlighted a multidisciplinary approach towards cervical cancer control and its prevention. She emphasised that early detection, regular check-up and screenings are the only way to save ourselves from such threatening disease. — TNS



From schools
Penguin awareness day

Ludhiana: Kids of Penguin Castle Preschool, Udham Singh Nagar, celebrated Penguin awareness day on Friday. Dedicated to the bird, January 20 is commemorated every year to raise awareness about the slow depletion of this species. The schoolchildren came dressed in penguin colours like black, white and yellow. The children learnt about various facts of penguins, which are a group of aquatic, flightless birds living in southern hemisphere, especially in Antarctica. School director Kamal Preet Kaur said children needed to be made aware that all animals, birds were important and need to be protected.

Recipe contest

To inculcate the habit of healthy eating and cooking among youngsters, nutritious recipe competition was organised at Shifaly International School. Students from classes VIII to XII participated in the competition. They prepared different types of salads using fruits, vegetables and sprouts, drinks like palak juice, apple goose, tea brunch, continental sandwiches, etc. Nutritious continental sandwich prepared by Simle, Manhar, Sarabjot bagged the first prize; Rohit Rana, Tousif, Sajal bagged the second prize and Namita, Mehak bagged the third prize.

Hindi declamation

Spring Dale Public School, Sherpur, Ludhiana, organised Ludhiana Sahodaya Schools Hindi declamation contest, here on Friday. A total of 40 students from 20 schools of the city participated in the contest. Sukhleen Kaur of Spring Dale Public School and Arushi of BVM School bagged the first prize while the second prize was won by Karan Kapoor of Green Land Convent School, Civil City. — TNS



Atam Nagar Seat
Candidates eye Namdhari votes
Puneet Pal Singh Gill
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 20
The candidates from the Atam Nagar constituency, which has a large number of voters from the Ramgarhia community, are all claiming to have the support of the Namdhari sect, which has a large number of Ramgarhia followers. According to rough estimates, there are around 30,000 Ramgarhias in the Atam Nagar constituency and around 10,000 Namdharis.

With the sect having lakhs of followers not only in Punjab but also across the globe, both the Congress and the SAD are eyeing the votes of Namdhari followers.

While Congress candidate Malkit Singh Birmi met Namdhari sect head Satguru Jagjit Singh at Bhaini Sahib on Wednesday, candidate of the SAD Hira Singh Gabria and Independent Simarjit Singh Bains boast of having the support of the sect.

These leaders also claim to have support of the Ramgarhia community, which has a large chunk of votes in Atam Nagar. Interestingly, while both Birmi and Gabria are Ramgarhias, Bains is a Jatt Sikh.

A few days ago, Gabria had addressed a press conference, in which he had claimed to have the support of the Namdhari voters. “A large number of people from the Namdhari sect living in the Atam Nagar constituency have promised wholehearted support to me,” Gabria had claimed.

Even Simarjit Singh Bains had claimed that people from the Namdhari sect as well as the Ramgarhia community are supporting him. “People who had addressed a press conference along with Gabria do not hold any impact on the voters. The residents of Atam Nagar know me for many years and have promised me support. It does not matter if Gabria addresses a press conference along with some members of the Namdhari sect,” Bains said.

Birmi, Congress candidate from Atam Nagar and former minister, said: “I had met Satguru Jagjit Singh at Bhaini Sahib on Wednesday and he promised to support my candidature. The Congress has old ties with the Namdhari community and everyone knows about it,” claimed Birmi.

In October last year, both Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal as well as Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee president Amarinder Singh had visited Bhaini Sahib, the headquarters of the Namdhari sect, on back-to-back days. During Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal’s visit, Cabinet minister Hira Singh Gabria had accompanied him, while Capt Amarinder Singh was accompanied by in charge of the party affairs in Punjab Gulchain Singh Charak.



Police to tighten noose on POs
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 20
In order to keep tabs on the movement of proclaimed offenders (PO) in the ensuing Assembly elections, the Khanna police has sent a list of POs to the election observers so that the criminals evading arrest could not cast their votes. The list also contains the pictures of the POs.

Similarly, a circular has been sent to all the banking establishments demanding the details of all the POs. The police has also asked the banks to identify the person and inform the police if their accounts are still operational.

Nearly 185 POs from Khanna town, including terrorists, murder accused, drug peddlers, illegal arms suppliers, persons wanted in hit-and-run cases, have been evading arrest.

“Not only banks and election officers, taking proactive measures we have also asked the MC of Khanna, cooperative societies and the Industrial Department to identify and inform the police about these POs. We have provided the photographs, offence and full address details of the POs so that there could be no confusion,” said SSP Khanna Mandeep Singh Sidhu.

The sources said the police is paying more emphasis on the activities of fugitive drug peddlers and illegal arm dealers, who could try scuttle the election process.



Awareness campaign on energy conservation
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 20
The PHD Chamber of Commerce and Industry and Konrad Adenauer Stiftung (KAS) in association with Indian Renewable Energy Development Agency (IREDA) organised an awareness campaign on energy conservation in light engineering industry, especially for MSMEs.

The programme disseminated information on techniques for effective energy management, which result in reducing both thermal and electrical energy consumption, besides providing information on latest energy saving ideas on various energy intensive equipment commonly used in the light engineering industry.

Participants were updated on self-energy auditing techniques through actual implemented case studies, application of solar water heating systems in industry, promote application of energy conservation measures in electrical, induction melting furnace, re-rolling process, heating treatment etc.



UCPMA ex-chief announces support to Bains
Puneet Pal Singh Gill
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 20
While the Assembly elections are inching closer, candidates from the Atam Nagar constituency have been claiming “support” from trade and industry as well as from various other sections of society.

Two days after the United Cycle and Parts Manufacturers’ Association (UCPMA) and other trade and industry associations announced its support for Akali candidate Hira Singh Gabria, former UCPMA president DS Chawla and his group has announced its support for rebel Akali candidate Simarjit Singh Bains.

The Atam Nagar constituency is a hub of trade and industry with a large number of small scale and medium industries located in Jammu Colony, Partap Nagar, Dashmesh Nagar, Janta Nagar, Chet Singh Nagar, Shimlapuri, Kot Mangal Singh and other such localities of the constituency.

That is why the support of these unions plays a significant role during elections.



Dental education programme
Tribune news Service

Ludhiana, January 20
The Ludhiana branch of the Indian Dental Association in collaboration with International College of Continuing Dental Education will hold a multi-speciality continuous dental education programme under the aegis of the Asian Pacific Dental Federation/Asia Pacific Regional Organisation on January 21 and 22.

Dr Bhagwant Singh Vice-President APDF/APRO asid about 300 participants from Delhi and Haryana would participate in it and eminent speakers will address the audience. On January 22 hands-on mini implants by Dr Oliver Hennedige and post and core by Dr Saiesha Mistry will be held at Shaheed Kartar Singh Sarabha Dental College.



Man falls from moving train
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 20
A man fell from a moving train near Sherpur village area, here today. The victim, who could not be identified, was spotted by the area residents in the wee hours.

Sources said the victim was perhaps thrown out of the train following a fight.

An ambulance rushed the man to the hospital. Jagdeep Singh, cluster manager of the emergency ambulance service said the man could not be identified as his condition was serious due to loss of blood.



School Games
Navjeet makes record in discus throw
Charanjit Singh Teja
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 20
Everyone has witnessed the potential of Navjeet Kaur Dhillon on the third day of the 57th National School Games, as she made a new record in the under-19 discus throw event. She threw the discus at a distance of 46.48m and broke the record of Parveen of Rajasthan, which was 44.44m, made in 2006. She has bettered the record by 2.4m.

Yesterday, Navjeet Kaur has clinched a gold medal in shot put with 12.77m.

Seventeen-year-old Navjeet Kaur is studying in class XI at Guru Harkrishan School, Amritsar.

Navjeet started playing the game when she was in class VI and within a year, she participated in the national games. It is not her first achievement.

She had made records in under-14, under-16 and under-18 categories also. Last year, Navjeet participated in Youth Commonwealth where she clinched a bronze medal in discus throw.

Her parents are also international players and sports is in her blood. Her father Jaspal Singh has won a silver medal in the South Asian Games in 1985. Now he is a coach of the junior India team. Her mother Kuldeep Kaur is also an international player who won a bronze medal in Asian hockey championships in Asian Games in 1986.

“These were overwhelming moments when I came to know that I broke the previous record in my first attempt. I am happy with my performance. I want to give all the credit to my family. My brother, Jasbir Singh is my role model,” said Navjeet.

Talking about her aim, she stated, “My next target is the Junior Asia Championship which is going to held in Dhaka this year. I will definitely clinch a medal there.”

To win the medal in the Olympics is a dream that she and her father share. “I am practicing hard. I spent more than five hours on practice. In 2016, I will clinch a gold in the Olympics,” she claimed.



Athletes irked over poor facilities
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 20
Participants from various states, who are here to participated in the 57th National School Games and are staying in government schools, are facing a lot of problem due to lack of facilities.

Let alone providing warm water for the players, there aren’t adequate bathrooms. As they are staying in government schools, there are barely any facilities for taking bath in the schools. “We are facing this problem and have to wake up early and wait for long to use washrooms,” said a student from Maharashtra. “It is exceptionally cold here and warm water should have been provided,” he said.

The players are also not happy with the transportation facilities. “It takes about half-an-hour to reach the stadium and players need about half-an-hour for warm up,” said a coach. But the bus came an hour late, therefore reducing the time for warm up, he added.

Renu and her friends from Hisar have not taken bath since they arrived in the city. “There are no bathrooms here. Even the toilets are in a bad condition. We have to go to the primary section of the school for the same,” she rued.

Athletes from Chhatisgarh said they had to take bath in the open because of the shortage of the washrooms. Although they were satisfied with the bedding provided to them, they said it would have been a lot better if beds were given to them.

“People are welcoming and hospitable here, but when you are in Punjab, you expect better facilities,” said an athlete from Kerala.



Kerala can be role model for Punjab
Charanjit Singh Teja
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 20
Kerala can be the role model for the state in the field of sports. The government’s support and hi-tech mode of training makes Kerala hold the championship trophy for 14 consecutive years and the visitors are eyeing for their 15th straight championship.

The sincerity of the Kerala government in promoting sports and players can be seen from their hi-tech initiatives, which they have taken to encourage the youth towards sports.

The education department of Kerala introduced a software named “School Sports” to highlight achievements of sportspersons of the state. One can get information about any sportsperson of the state with the help of this software.

Even during the ongoing school games, more than 40 persons of different media houses are accompanying athletes of Kerala. Electronic media are telecasting the achievements of their athletes live on vernacular channels and print media are portraying the young athletes as stars.

The Kerala government gives Rs 25,000 to the sportsperson who wins a gold medal, Rs 20,000 to the one who wins silver medal and Rs 15,000 to the one who bags bronze medal in the school games. Moreover 15 per cent, 13 per cent and 10 per cent grace marks are given to gold, silver and bronze medal winners, respectively.

Talking about the achievements of the athletes, Dr Chacko Josph, state sports organiser, Kerala, said, “It is our government’s strategy to promote the sports in the state. We make the young sportspersons the shining stars with the help of new technology. It motivates them to put more efforts and bring laurels for the state.”

Taking about Punjab, Dr Chacko Josph said, “Punjabis are gifted with good physique. They have the sufficient potential and power. Even Punjab government provides them good sports infrastructure, as the AstroTurf track is the new thing for our players. It hurts us to see that youth of Punjab is getting addicted to drugs and depriving the nation of potential sports stars.”



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