L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Man falls into pit, dies
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 15
A construction worker died after falling into a pit in the Hargobind Nagar area near Civil City here today.

Pashori Lal, a resident, said he had hired two labourers to dig a pit near his house for laying a private sewerage. The incident took place at around 4 pm when the labourers dug a 9-ft-deep pit. Since the area around the pit was damp due to a leak in a sewer, it led to the caving-in of the surface.

While one labourer managed to come out of the pit, the victim got stuck in it. Pashori Lal heard his cries and launched a rescue operation.

"The labourer was stuck in waist-deep quagmire and loose earth fell on him," said a woman living in the locality.

The police and fire department officials swung into action and reached the spot. The pit was cleared with the help of a JCB machine and the firefighters descended into the pit to look for him. The victim was badly stuck in the sand and it took nearly 30 minutes to pull him out. He was rushed to the Civil Hospital in an ambulance, but was declared brought dead.

Vinod Kumar, SHO (Division No. 4), who supervised the rescue operation, said the labourer could not be identified yet. "Life has become a struggle for survival. This man lost his life for a mere Rs 700," the SHO said.

Lack of equipment, manpower

The incident has again brought to the fore the lack of an organised unit to tackle such incidents. The lack of proper equipment also become an impediment in rescuing the victim, who lay buried under sand. In the name of a rescue operation tool, the civic body uses a JCB machine. The fire department, with little expertise in dealing with such cases, was seen struggling to pull out the body.


Constable killed at unmanned level crossing
Train rams into victim's car; deceased sole breadwinner of family
Jaswant Shetra
The badly damaged car of the victim which was hit by a train at an unmanned level crossing
The badly damaged car of the victim which was hit by a train at an unmanned level crossing. Tribune photos

Jagraon, May 15
There seems to be no end to the incidents of people losing their lives in accidents taking place at unmanned level crossings in various parts of the state.

In yet another such tragic incident, a constable was crushed to death when a speeding train hit his car near the Chaunkiman railway station, 13 km from Jagraon on the Ludhiana-Ferozepur track, this morning.

The deceased has been identified as 34-year-old Gurpaljit Singh, a resident of Jassowal village near Gurusar Sudhar in Ludhiana district. Gurpaljit Singh was serving as a constable with the Jagraon police.

As per information, the accident took place at around 8 am today when Gurpaljit Singh was coming to Jagraon in a car. As soon as he approached the unmanned level crossing situated on a link road connecting Jassowal village with the Ludhiana-Moga highway near Chaunkiman, he failed to notice the oncoming train, which rammed into his car. The impact of the collision was such that the car was flung several metres away from the track and was completely damaged. Gurpaljit Singh died on the spot.

With the news of the tragic accident reaching his village, a large number of village residents arrived at the scene and pulled out his body from the car. He was rushed to the Civil Hospital at Jagraon, where he was declared brought dead.

The body was handed over to his family members after a postmortem.

Gurpaljit Singh is survived by his wife Sukhdeep Kaur and a one-and-a-half-year-old son. Heart-rending scenes were witnessed when the victim's body was brought home. His wife and mother were inconsolable and fainted several times. He was the sole breadwinner of the family.

Sarpanch Kulwant Singh said though unmanned level crossings had claimed several lives in the past years, the railway authorities were doing nothing concrete to check such incidents from happening in the future. Blaming the railway authorities for the mishap, the village residents said they had requested them several times to convert the crossing into a manned one, but their requests had fallen on deaf ears.

DRM Naresh Goel, when contacted, said the railways had erected a manned level crossing on the road some time ago, but this particular crossing was being "tested" and had not become operational yet.

Past Incidents

  • In February 2009, six schoolchildren were killed and 13 were injured when their bus collided with a train at an unmanned level crossing near Chooharchak village in Moga district.
  • In September 2010, three schoolchildren were killed when the van they were travelling in was hit by a train at an unmanned crossing near Nakodar.
  • On February 16, seven persons, including five members of a family hailing from Kaunke village near Jagraon, had died in an accident at an unmanned crossing near Dhuri while returning from a wedding.



ASI nabbed taking Rs 50,000 bribe, suspended
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 15
An Assistant Sub-Inspector (ASI) was reportedly caught while accepting a bribe of Rs 50,000 at his official residence in the Police Lines here today.

The ASI, identified as Balwinder Singh, is posted at the Sadar police station and had demanded a kickback of Rs 2 lakh for favouring Bhupinder Kaur in a fraud case.

Bhupinder Kaur brought the matter to the notice of the vigilance department. After going through the facts of the case, the vigilance launched a probe.

Sources said Bhupinder Kaur had even recorded her telephonic conversation with the ASI. A vigilance team led by a DSP, an Excise and Taxation Officer and an Excise Officer laid a trap outside the ASI's house. The team handed over Rs 50,000 laced with chemical to the complainant.

Bhupinder Kaur reached the ASI's residence and offered the first instalment of the bribe. Just as the ASI accepted the cash, the vigilance team entered the house. The ASI tried to flee, but was nabbed.

The ASI has been booked under Sections 7 and 13 (2) of the Prevention of Corruption Act. The ASI has been placed under suspension.



PAU union blocks traffic
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 15
Traffic went for a toss on the Ferozepur Road after agitated Punjab Agricultural University (PAU) employees held a dharna and blocked the road here today.

Harassed commuters argued with the protesters to open the road and after some time, the employees lifted the blockade.

The employees have been protesting for the last five days as they have not been paid their salaries for the month of April and arrears.

Paramjit Singh Gill, president of the PAU employees' union said: "Farmers produced 123 lakh tonnes of wheat, yielding Rs 2,000-crore income to the Punjab Government as tax. This is Rs 700 crore more from last year. PAU employees have been contributing in the field of agriculture. The government should also recognise our contribution.

"If the government is sincere to the development of the PAU, it should enhance the grant to the university. Almost all employees of Punjab have already got their arrears. Why discriminate against us," he said.



Withhold salary of truant bank officials: DC
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 15
Deputy Commissioner Rahul Tiwari has ordered United Bank, Indian Bank, Canara Bank and Syndicate Bank to stop the salaries of officials who failed to attend the review meeting without prior permission. During the review of the progress of banks and agencies in the district, the DC said officials adopting a "casual" approach would be dealt with sternly.

He called for an explanation from the banks and agencies which could not achieve their targets. He asked bank managers with branches in rural and urban areas to prepare a detailed performance report so that the defaulting banks could be held accountable.

The DC said since Punjab was an agricultural state, banks must encourage the masses by providing farm-related loans, including aqua culture, dairy farming, poultry farming and horticulture. The banks should also start a door-to-door service in villages with a population exceeding 2,000. The saving accounts of heads of the families must be opened by the banks.

Jeet Singh, lead bank manager, said as on March 31, 2012, all the banks in the district had deposits worth Rs 30,252 crores, which was up by 19 per cent. During the year, 85 new branches had been opened in the district.



Shaheed Sukhdev's house to be turned into museum
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 15
Shaheed Sukhdev's ancestral house situated at Nau-Ghara will be developed as a museum to inspire coming generations. This was announced by Sharanjit Singh Dhillon, state PWD minister, while paying tributes to Shaheed Sukhdev at a function held to celebrate the 106th birth anniversary of the martyr here today.

The state-level function was attended by ministers and political leaders, including industry and commerce minister Anil Joshi, chairman SSS Board Santa Singh Umedpuri, Mayor Hakam Singh Giaspura and Vice-Chairman of Planning Board Rajinder Bhandari.

Dhillon urged people to help eradicate social evils like corruption, drug abuse, foeticide and illiteracy as it would be a befitting tribute to the martyrs. Paying tributes to Shaheed Sukhdev, Bhagat Singh and Rajguru, he said they were the real heroes of the freedom movement and introduced a new spirit of sacrifice and patriotism among the youth.

The minister said the government had started celebrating the birth anniversaries of the martyrs to inspire the younger generation. Such functions strengthened a
feeling of national integration and patriotism among the people.

Dhillon honoured Vinod Thapar and Vishal Nayyar, family members of Shaheed Sukhdev, and other freedom fighters.



Two held with fake cosmetics
Fake international brands being sold at Gur Mandi, retail shops
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 15
Women using international brands of fairness creams and other cosmetic items beware! The cosmetic you might be using could be a fake one and could harm your skin. With arrest of two persons, the city police has claimed to have busted a gang of swindlers, who were manufacturing and selling fake cosmetics material of noted international brands in Gur Mandi and other noted retail stores of the city. Not only this, fake cosmetics material developers were playing havoc with the lives of children too.

The police has seized a huge cache of baby shampoos, baby soaps and baby milk lotions. The accused identified as Mohit Kumar, who runs a shop along with his mother and brother at Gur Mandi, was arrested following the complaint of Ramesh Dutt, operation manager of Speed Network, a company that keeps a check on the sale of noted international brands.

Ramesh said Mohit along with his other family members was manufacturing the material at a house in Haibowal. After packing the material, the accused was selling it off at his shop in Gur Mandi and was also selling it to retailers across the state at throwaway prices.

The police has also nabbed Harkirat Singh, who runs a printing unit. Harkirat was printing the material at his unit located at Chet Singh Nagar.

Ramesh said the market cost of the seized brands were over Rs 25 lakh.

Mohit confessed before the police that fake cosmetics material was actually costing peanuts to the manufacturer. Whereas, the products of noted international brand cost Rs 300 to 500 in the market. Dutt said Mohit's arrest was the tip of the iceberg. He said there were several such manufacturers operating and fake cosmetics material worth over Rs 5 crore had been sold in the market.



LIT sells 24 commercial properties for Rs 11.56 cr
Kuldip Bhatia

The LIT auction of commercial properties underway in Ludhiana
The LIT auction of commercial properties underway in Ludhiana. Photo: Inderjeet Verma

Ludhiana, May 15
There was mixed response to the offer for sale through public auction of 62 commercial sites and built up properties by the Ludhiana Improvement Trust (LIT) here on Monday.In the course of auction proceedings, which continued till very late in the evening, 21 built-up booths, two shop-cum-flat sites and one booth site in different schemes were sold for Rs 11.56 crore.

In terms of premium over the reserve price, the auction turned out to be a huge success for the LIT, as the total sale proceeds yielded 78.40 per cent more than the reserve price which stood at Rs 6,47,92,650.

On offer were 16 built-up booths in the Model Town Extension scheme, one coal depot site in the same scheme, one built up shop-cum-flat in Bharat Nagar Extension scheme, one school site in Kidwai Nagar, 10 built-up booths and one shop-cum-flat site in the Shaheed Bhagat Singh Nagar scheme, two booth sites and three built-up booths in the Maharishi Valmiki Nagar scheme, two shop-cum-flat sites and one booth site in the Rajguru Nagar scheme and 24 built-up booths in the Bhai Randhir Singh Nagar scheme.

Among the properties sold in the auction, conducted by the LIT chairman MM Vyas along with the Executive Officer Avtar Singh Azad, four booths in A block of Model Town Extension locality were sold for Rs 1,62,50,000. The constructed booths, each with a floor area of 18.75 square metres carried a reserve price of Rs 17.64 lakh. The highest successful bid for one of the booths was Rs 45.50 lakh, whereas, the remaining three went for Rs 39 lakh each. Another built up booth in C block of the same scheme was sold for Rs 19.40 lakh

One SCF site in Rajguru Nagar and another booth site in the same scheme also turned out to be the pick of the buyers as the SCF site, with a floor area of 125 square yards was taken at a whopping price of Rs 2.67 crore against its reserve price of a little over Rs 39.50 lakh while the booth site (area 18.75 square yards, reserve price Rs 11,21,500) fetched Rs 60 lakh. Another SCF site in Shaheed Bahagat Singh Nagar with a floor price of Rs 1,22,19,900 was taken for Rs 1,52,10,000.

Out of the 24 built-up booths on offer in the Bhai Randhir Singh Nagar locality, 16 were sold with the highest successful bid at Rs 38.60 lakh and the lowest being Rs 25 lakh as against the reserve price of Rs 24,17,500 for each booth with floor area of 22.68 square yards each.

Bidders, however, did not show much interest in the nine built-up booths in D block of Model Town Extension, Part II, a site for coal depot and two built-up booths in C block of the same scheme. A constructed SCF in the Bharat Nagar Extension scheme, a school site in Kidwai Nagar and some other commercial properties in Shaheed Bhagat Singh Nagar and Maharishi Valmiki Nagar also met a similar fate.

"Either the bids offered by the buyers were too low or else there were no takers for some of these properties with the result that we decided to put sale of these properties on hold for the time being," Vyas said.



Small town girls, too, can make it big: Miss India World
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 15
Miss India World - 2012 Vanya Mishra was in the city last evening for the inauguration of the Ludhiana branches of a diet and nutrition clinic.

During the inauguration, she said that right diet was very important. "We Punjabis are foodies. But we need to take care and eat right and in moderation," she said.

She said that she was busy with the preparations of the Miss World event coming up in August in China. For the contest, not just beauty, but diction, style and fitness are equally important.

A third year student of Electrical Engineering at Punjab Engineering College, Chandigarh, she said that although she had dreamt of becoming Miss India since chidlhood, but she never took any training from anybody. She mentored herself, picking up tips from the internet.

She said that she wanted to prove that one could make it big even if one was from a small town like Chandigarh.She said that she would be part of Bollywood only when if it was appropriate time to do so. She was currently focusing on the Miss World title and her studies.

After the title, she said that everyone was proud of her at the college as well. The principal had congratulated her for the achievement. She said that she loved her mother, and she was one of the persons behind her success. She even gifted her with a watch on Mother's Day.

Skinny figure is not healthy, she says, and she doesn't recommend it. She said that her favourite destination so far was Goa. But she would like to go to her dream destination Australia, and her favourite actress was Priyanka Chopra, she said.

She has been quite an all-rounder, as she was good in academics in school, a gold-medallist in skating at the school-level and a badminton player too. She said that she would like to own an Audi, but she must earn it. The Jalandhar-born girl is against female foeticide and is an admirer of Astronaut Kalpana Chawla.

‘Skinny figure not healthy’

Miss India World - 2012 Vanya Mishra was in the city last evening for the inauguration of the Ludhiana branches of a diet and nutrition clinic. She said Skinny figure is not healthy.



Varinder Sharma is president of taxation body
Tribune News Service

Varinder Sharma (centre blue shirt) with other members of the District Taxation Bar Association (sales tax) in Ludhiana on Tuesday
Varinder Sharma (centre blue shirt) with other members of the District Taxation Bar Association (sales tax) in Ludhiana on Tuesday. A Tribune photograph

Ludhiana, May 15
Elections to the post of president of the District Taxation Bar Association (sales tax) were held today in which Varinder Sharma emerged as a winner defeating YP Sikka by 94 votes.

After assuming the charge of the president, Sharma said he would work towards the betterment of the association and would look into the interest of the members personally.

Jatinder Khurana, advocate, while welcoming him said the association was confident that he would work honestly and keep in mind the interest of each and every member of the association.

While other members of the association were elected unanimously a week ago, the president of the association was elected through voting.



Electroplaters meets PPCB chairman

Ludhiana, May 15
A deputation of the Ludhiana electroplaters' association met Ravinder Singh, chairman of the Punjab Pollution Control Board. Joginder Kumar, president of the association, claimed that the consent for running units was being issued to them for three-six months while the fee was being charged for five years.

"It is uncalled for and we have been running from pillar to post, but to no avail," he said. Ravinder Singh assured the delegation that the procedure would be simplified and the consent would be issued for a longer period from six months to a year. — TNS



from schools
All about veggies and their qualities

‘A Vegetable Vendor’ event in progress at Cherry Lane play school in Ludhiana
‘A Vegetable Vendor’ event in progress at Cherry Lane play school in Ludhiana. A Tribune photograph

To encourage the little ones to eat all vegetables "A Vegetable Vendor" event was organised at Cherry Lane play school. A vegetable vendor visited the school. The teacher showed all variously coloured vegetables to the children and taught them about the benefits of eating vegetables in their daily lives. The children also identified all vegetables, their colours and their special qualities.

Splash day

Tiny tots of Kundan Vidya Mandir, Civil Lines, just splashed water and had lots of fun cooling themselves in the pool. Everyone has their own unique way of enjoying summers and children love to play with water, splashing water at each other especially with their beloved teachers. Today, the children of KG Section got a chance to splash water on their teachers as well. All the excitement could be heard in the cheers of the children as they played in the water away from the hectic schedule of books and studies.

Colours’ day

Primary colours' day celebrations were held at Green Land Senior Secondary Public School , Jalandhar Bye Pass, for the tiny tots of the nursery wing to enable them to have recognition of different colours. The students were dressed up in red, blue, and green outfits. Different activities like colouring, face painting, hand painting etc. were held to enable the students to differentiate between colours. Students made cards with primary colours. The classes decorated with different objects and toys wore a colourful look.

Recitation contest

Melody, stage confidence, intonation, coupled with powerful emotions marked the inter-house English and Hindi poem recitation contest. The young bards bared their souls when they poured out their feelings in the contest held at Kundan Vidya Mandir on Tuesday.

Family day

"Families give shape to societies, nations and the world". Keeping in view the idea, the students of Green Land Senior Secondary Public School, Jalandhar Bye Pass, observed International Family Day by organising an English declamation competition in which students of XI -XII highlighted poverty devastated families, communities and nations. Maintaining socio-economic balance was a must. It was also highlighted that loss of values was one of the major causes for small families. The trend of nuclear families, had given rise to selfishness amongst children. — TNS



Decomposed body found

Phillaur, May 15
A decomposed body of a village youth was found from a village well nearby Apra village last night. The deceased was identified as Charanjit Singh of Apra village who was missing for the last one month, the police said.

The body of the deceased was handed over to the family members after conducting a post-mortem examination at the civil hospital.

In the second incident, a motorcyclist identified as Lovepreet Singh of Munna village was killed on the spot when his motorcycle he was riding on was hit by a bus at Ravidass Nagar last evening. The bus driver however managed to flee from the spot, the police said. — OC



Contraband seized

Mandi Ahmedgarh, May 15
The Dehlon police led by Amandeep Singh Brar nabbed three persons for allegedly trafficking drugs and narcotics, Assistant Commissioner of Police Gill Gurpreet Singh Sikand said.

Huge quantities of banned products were recovered from their possession. Sabar of Jawaddi, Kuldeep Kumar of Pohir and Charanjit Singh of Kilaraipur were arrested from different places. — OC



25 probables selected for training at Regional Coaching Centre
Anil Datt

Ludhiana, May 15
As many as 25 probables (U-22) have been selected at the trials conducted by the Ludhiana District Cricket Association (LDCA) at Arya College ground here yesterday.

The selection panel comprising Chaman Lal Malhotra, Sham Lal, Ankur Kakkar, Pawan Pandey, Naresh Marwaha and Naveen Sharma conducted the trials before shortlisting the probables.

These probables wll be enrolled in the Regional Coaching Centre (RCC) for the cricket session 2012-13 being run by the LDCA under the patronage of the Punjab Cricket Association (PCA) at the same venue. The names of the probables are: Geetansh Khera, Sunny Pandey, Baltej Singh, Gursharan Singh, Vinay Kapoor, Gurvinder Hara, Akhil Aggarwal, Sandeep Singh, Devinder Sidhu, Anil Siag, Ashish Kumar, Abhinav Bhatia, Chirag Maria, Rohan Mehra, Abhishek Talwar, Himanshu, Amritpal Singh, Paras Bhardwaj, Kunal Partap, Rippendeep, Jaspal Singh, Sukhjinder Singh, Nikhil Chowdhary and Bhupinder Singh.

LDCA honorary general secretary Vinod Chitkara said the selected players had been advised to report to the former Punjab Ranji captain Ankur Kakkar on May 17 at 5 pm at the Arya College ground. The Ludhiana contingent (U-22) will be finalised from these probables to participate in the upcoming Punjab State Inter-District Cricket Championship, said Chitkara.



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