Thursday, July 13, 2000,
Chandigarh, India
L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S

Daler album taken off air
Pop star asked to apologise, face Akal Takht
From A.S.Prashar
Tribune News Service

LUDHIANA, JULY 12 — Daler Mehndi's latest music album, "Ek Dana, Do Dane," has been taken off the air with immediate effect following protests from certain Sikh organisations in Punjab and Delhi.

A spokesman of the Mumbai-based music company, Tips Industries, which has recorded the album and is distributing it throughout the country, rang up the office of Ludhiana Tribune to convey that instructions have been issued to all TV channels not to air the controversial music album from today. He also followed it up with a fax message addressed to Mr Tejinder Singh Sandhu, president of the all India Sikh Students Federation (Badal), saying that the company had no intention of hurting the religious sentiments of any community; and if this had happened, it was unintended and regrettable.

He said that the company had only a single-album contract with Daler Mehndi. This is the first time the Rs 110-crore Tips Industries has collaborated with Daler Mehndi to produce a music album. Daler's all previous albums have been produced by Magna Sound.

Daler himself was not available for comment because he was stated to be abroad on a tour.

The spokesman of the music company said the video of the song "Ek Dana, Do Dane" would be reviewed and the objectionable portion edited.

This is the second time Daler Mehndi, who is billed as India's top pop star, has landed himself in trouble with Sikh organisations. His first album, "Bolo tara rara...," also roused the ire of the Sikh bodies which accused him of trying to commercialise Nishan Sahib. Daler Mehndi's latest album has drawn a protest from the Delhi Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee, Mr Avtar Singh Hit, as well as the All-India Sikh Students Federation (Badal), which is a wing of the ruling Shiromani Akali Dal. The AISSF(B) sought a ban on the pop star's latest album, "Ek Dana, Do Dane," last week for allegedly portraying Sikhs in bad light and for trying to poke fun at Sikhism.

Mr Harinder Singh Narang, legal counsel for Mr Tejinder Singh Sandhu, president of the AISSF (B), today also served a legal notice on Tips Industries, Daler Mehndi and the producer of the video, Farha Khan. The notice inter alia stated that the public in general and Sikhs in particular had been hurt by a scene in the video in which one innocent Sikh child is shown teasing an innocent girl.... The innocent girl is shown slapping the Sikh child and by doing this, the feelings of the whole Sikh community have been hurt.

Daler has been asked to send and get published unconditional written apology. All those accused by the Sikh body have been asked to present themselves before the Akal Takht to apologise within seven days of the notice. The Counsel said the song should also not be shown on television channels, failing which his clients would file a criminal suit for damages.

In a communication addressed earlier to the Jathedar of Akal Takht, Bhai Joginder Singh Vedanti, the AISSF (B) chief and several other office-bearers of the body said the pop album should be banned immediately while Daler Mehndi should be summoned to the Akali Takht to receive punishment.

The AISSF also sternly warned all TV channels to closely scrutinise all programmes before airing them to ensure that these did not contain any scene which might hurt the sentiments of any religious group. “Every programme should be cleared by the censors,” the body said.Back



Man missing from police station
For Our Correspondent

LUDHIANA, July 12 — A case of alleged illegal detention of Sunil Kumar Gupta (37) by the Khanna city police has come to light.

At a press conference here today, Mr Vinod Sharma, President, Manav Kalyan Samiti, and Mr Satpal Aggarwal, who moved the Punjab and Haryana High Court against the detention of Sunil Kumar, alleged that when they reached the Khanna city police station with the high court warrant officer, Mr D.M. Parti, last night, there was no trace of Sunil Kumar in the police station.

Both Mr Sharma and Mr Aggarwal said that they had been regularly meeting Sunil Kumar in the Khanna city police station ever since he was detained around 2 pm on Saturday (July 8).

Mr Aggarwal alleged that the police had given a severe beating to Sunil Kumar as a result of which he could not even walk.

Mr Aggarwal is the brother of a widow, Neelam, alias Sunita, whose husband died on January 28 while she had gone to visit her mother. Sunil Kumar Gupta, the person allegedly detained by the police, had gone to Khanna to fetch her household items after she had been virtually thrown out of the house following her husband Rajinder Kumar's death.

A dispute over the division of property after her husband's death is said to be the cause of the incident.

Mr Vinod Sharma and Mr Satpal Aggarwal affirmed that there was no report in the police station records against Sunil Gupta.

Sunil had either been hidden somewhere or killed, they feared.

They demanded stern action against the erring cops and return of Sunil as early as possible.


Ghanta Ghar beautification project remains

From Jupinderjit Singh
Tribune News Service

LUDHIANA, July 11 — A two-year old beautification project around Ghanta Ghar, a monument of the city, remains still-born. Prepared and announced on several occasions by the local Municipal Corporation, the project was aimed to improve the surroundings of the historical Clock Tower, but due to its non-completion, the place remains as dirty as ever.

In fact, a few half-completed structures, the remnants of the project, have added to the ugliness of the tower’s surroundings. The corporation had announced that a railing with glow lights at the top would be installed around it. However, while the railing was erected, there is no sign of the promised glow lights or other illuminations.

Similarly, it was announced that some greenery would be added to the scene by developing a park near the tower . It was also proposed that a statue of Shaheed Kartar Singh Sarabha would be shifted from the Ghanta Ghar Chowk and installed on a high pedestal on a triangular verge opposite the tower, but the pedestal was left half constructed. With iron rods dangling out of the incomplete pedestal and film and other posters affixed onto it, the structure not only blocks a view of the tower, but also makes an ugly company to the monument.

The non-completion of the project has anraged shopkeepers around the tower. Mr Subhash Chand Singal and Mr Jagjit Singh, chairman and President, respectively of the Clock Tower Traders Association, told Ludhiana Tribune that the MC officials had announced the project in August, 1998 and then again in January, 1999 while speaking at a function near the tower. They claimed that the shopkeepers eagerly awaited the execution of the project all these months and reminded the MC several times about it. Still, the place remained as dirty as ever.

The association was, in fact, reacting to a Ludhiana Tribune report about the neglect of the Clock Tower and the urgent need to conserve it. The association said it was due to the non-execution of this project that the place was ugly and dirty.

According to them, there was a strong need for such a beautification drive around the monument as it is the pride of the city and visitors come from far off places to see it. Mr Jagdish Mehmi, senior vice-President of the association, said apart from the historical significance of the clock tower, it had an emotional attachment to the Ludhianvis. He said the city had grown around the tower and people had memories attached to it.

While Mr S.S. Sandhu, Commissioner, Municipal Corporation could not be contacted in spite of several attempts, an official of the MC said, the project was delayed due to non-construction of slip-ways at the chowk which was a part of the project. According to the official, it was planned that Ghanta Ghar and its surroundings would be beautified and the chowk be removed to make way for installation of traffic lights.

However, few shopkeepers on the other side of the ghanta ghar resisted the construction of the slip-ways, claiming it would hamper their business interests and the project hangs fire since then, the official said. The official acknowledged that it was an important project, but it was not delayed because of the MC’s fault.


No salary cut for strike period
From Our correspondent

LUDHIANA, July 12 — No salary cut will be imposed on teachers in non-government colleges for the strike period of 26 days. This was confirmed to the office bearers of Punjab and Chandigarh College Teachers Union (PCCTU) by Mr G.P.S. Sahi, Principal Secretary, Higher Education, in a recent meeting.

There was a nationwide strike of university and college teachers in 1997 demanding immediate implementation of UGC pay scales.

Claiming this here today, Mr K.B.S. Sodhi, President, PCCTU, told The Tribune that when the nationwide strike was called off after an agreement between the Human Resource Development Ministry and representatives of the All India Federation of University and College Teachers’ Organisation (AIFUCTO), it was agreed that no punitive measures will be resorted to by the state governments on account of the strike.

Although the audit cell of the Punjab Government had proposed cut to the tune of Rs 4.20 crore on the grant, on account of this, teachers are demanding release of the grant amounting to Rs 14.40 crore for the period of January and February, 2000, instead of Rs 10.20 crore. The case is still pending with the Finance Department.

However, according to Mr Sodhi, Mr G.P.S. Sahi has asked Dr H.S. Goel, DPI Colleges, to telephonically convey to principals not to impose any cut on the salary of teachers.Back


Students accuse HoD of accepting bribe
Tribune News Service

LUDHIANA, July 12 — The authorities at the Dayanand Medical College and Hospital (DMCH) have been accused of trying to hush up a case relating to complaints against a senior professor and head of a department for taking inducements from the students to get them through in the examinations.

According to well-placed sources in the DMCH, some students of the final year submitted a written complaint to the Principal, alleging that the said professor had taken money from some non-resident Indian students to allow them to copy in the examinations. The Principal of the college Dr S.C. Ahuja, told TNS that he had received the complaints and these were being investigated. However, he did not elaborate, saying it was the internal matter of the college. The Principal said, he would welcome any information from anybody regarding this case.

For some time past, there have been a series of complaints and allegations of corruption against certain senior professors of the college. A few years back, the DMCH management removed one of the heads of department and debarred him from conducting examinations after charges of corruption were established against him. He still continues to work as an ordinary lecturer in the college.

It is not an isolated instance of unfair means resorted to by some NRI students. An NRI student was alleged to have never attended his class. However, he allegedly managed satisfactory results by spending a good amount of money. The students were sore over the indiscipline by some students and also the manner they got away with it.

Although no student in DMC — was willing to go on record, they claimed the activities of NRI students and their “special relationships” with teachers were too well known. However, they clarified that not all the NRI students resorted to unfair means and not many teachers obliged them. They said, it was only a few who brought bad name to the institution.

Every year, on an average ten NRI candidates are given admission in the college. Their lavish lifestyle is well known. Because of the NRI students, the room rent around the DMC — has skyrocketed. One student revealed that because of their huge paying capacity NRI candidates had made it difficult for other students to get accommodation in the vicinity of the college. A room that cost Rs 1000 ordinarily fetches more than Rs 2000 thanks to the generous spending habits of the NRI students. A good number of these students live a luxurious life with airconditioners installed in their rooms.

Although the inducements and illegal gratification allegedly taken by a senior professor has come to the light, other sort of gratification is said to be rampant in all medical colleges. The NRI students reportedly arrange the foreign trips of teachers. This is said to be a common thing.

Some students reportedly start taking tuitions just a week before the examinations with the particular teacher for obvious reasons. The fee is paid for the full month. This is said to be a common practice in most of the medical colleges



Small-scale units threaten stir
Tribune News Service

LUDHIANA, July 12 — The representatives of small-scale industries today accused three big industrialists of the state, Mr SP Oswal, Mr Inder Mohan Singh Grewal and Mr Amarjeet Goyal, of misleading the government and betraying the small industry for their vested interests. They alleged the “big three” had managed to restrict the hike in power tariff for the heavy industry to 8 per cent only, while for the small industry the hike was 17 per cent.

Addressing a press conference here today, Mr Harish Khanna, President of the Industry and Trade Forum, along with several leaders of various trade and industrial organisations, declared that they would gherao the office of the Punjab State Electricity Board chairman at Patiala on July 21. He warned that in case the government did not defer the controversial notification increasing the power tariff, they would launch a statewide agitation. A programme had been chalked out in this regard.

They would meet the trade and industry representatives tomorrow at Mandi Gobindgarh and Patiala, on July 13 at Jalandhar and Phagwara, and on July 14 at Amritsar and Batala. They feared that the recent hike in power tariff would sound death-knell of the small industry. Mr Khanna pointed out that while the hike for the big industry was just about 8 per cent, for the small industry he claimed it was 17 per cent and for the domestic sector, according to him, it was 26 per cent.

Mr Khanna disclosed that of the eight members of the industrial panel constituted for discussions with the PSEB on tariff hike, four had disagreed on the hike. He claimed that, besides him Mr RP Bhatia, Mr Amrish Arora and Mr Chaman Singh Matharoo had opposed the hike. He claimed that no consensus could be reached at the meeting on June 19. He alleged, “Four other members, three of whom are big industrialists, betrayed us by signing a secret deal with the Chief Minister on the same night.”

Mr Tulsi Dass Jaitwani, President of the Punjab Beopar Mandal, demanded that the constitution of the State Regulatory Commission for the PSEB, which could review the power tariff from time to time and also study the need for raising the tariff. He said the constitution of such a body would develop a rapport between the PSEB and the general public.

The small scale industrialists were sore over the attitude of the government. They pointed out that while about 8200 million units of power were being supplied without keeping any account, the small scale industrialists were being harassed and fleeced. They said the seasonal industries like rice shellers, ice factories and cotton ginning mills had been given a severe blow as the tariff hike for these industries was 26 per cent.

Others present at the press conference included Mr Jaswant Singh Birdi, General Secretary United Cycle and Parts Manufacturers Association, Mr Balwant Rai and Mr Ved Prakash Jindal, President and General Secretary, respectively, Northern India Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Mr Munish Ram Malhotra and Jagdish Rai Monga, President and General Secretary, respectively, Ludhiana Tractor Part Manufacturers and Traders Association, Mr Mohan Singh Thukral, general secretary Janta Nagar Small Scale Manufacturers Association, Mr Ranjit Singh Saini, General Secretary, Saini Welfare Association, Mr Subash Beri, President Edible Oil Manufacturers Association, Punja, Mr Jatinder Moti Sood, President, Ludhiana Agriculture Diesel engine Manufacturers and Traders Association, Mr Jagomohan Sharma, President, Pradesh Beopar Mandal, Mr Mulk Raj, General Secretary, Foodgrain Dealers Association and Cement Dealers Association, Mr Yogesh Bansal and Mr Ajay Arora, President and Secretary, respectively, Ludhiana Dyes and Chemicals Dealers Association, Mr Rajesh Nayar, Secretary, Plywood and timber Dealers Association, and Mr Ajit Singh Chabra, Secretary Ludhiana Small Scale Manufacturers Association.



Schools to join war against drugs
Tribune News Service

LUDHIANA, July 12 — The district administration here has, in association with a number of non-government organisations, announced holding of seven training camps for teachers of various schools as part of its programme to check the menace of drug abuse, especially among the youth, in the city.

An official press release issued here today said this decision was taken by a sub-committee formed by the district administration under the chairmanship of Mr S.R. Kaler, Additional Deputy Commissioner, to control the fast spreading drug menace. Apart from representatives of the district administration, a number of NGOs, social activists and office-bearers of the Chemists Association also attended the meeting.

Giving details, Mr Kaler said the training camps would start from July 17 at Senior Secondary School, Jagraon, followed by Raikot on July 18, Ludhiana-East on July 19, Ludhiana-West on July 20, Samrala on July 22, Khanna on July 25 and Payal on July 27. In these camps, doctors from CMC, DMC and Guru Teg Bahadur Hospital, representative of NGOs and de-addiction centres and legal experts would educate the teachers regarding the different aspects of the problem. The resource persons thus trained in these camps would organise lectures and seminars in the schools in the city and also address prayer assemblies in the schools to educate the students.

Mr Kaler further said representatives of the district-level De-addiction Committee would also address the meetings in the schools. In the colleges, it was decided that the service of students engaged in NSS activities would also be availed of to organise penal discussions and seminars to create awareness about effect of drugs on the addict’s health.

He said the meeting also decided to cover the rural population by arranging training camps at block-level in the district. The camps would train panches, sarpanches and social workers, who would further create awareness among the villagers and would also form village-level de-addiction committees to fight drug abuse.


Luck smiles on burns victim

Sukhwinder Singh (20), alias Goldy, of Araicha Kalan village near Doraha, was working as a helper in a motor workshop at Doraha when he sustained third degree burns on his left leg in January this year.

The workshop owner turned a blind eye to the sufferings of the young man as the treatment required was expensive.

Goldy had little hope of recovering as his father, too, could not afford the treatment required being a daily wager-earner himself.

But luck smiled on Goldy when he arrived at Mangat Nursing Home, Pakhowal Road in the city on June 3. A team of doctors led by Dr B.S. Mangat operated on his leg. The operation, that involved grafting of the skin because of the infected third degree burns, lasted two hours. The operation was a success.

Now Goldy is happy. He feels indebted to the doctors who not only saved him from becoming a handicapped person for the rest of his life, but also did not charge him anything.Back


'Withdraw case against Surjewala'
From Our Correspondent

LUDHIANA, July 12 — The District Youth Congress has urged the President, Mr K.R. Narayanan, to ask the Haryana Government to withdraw the criminal case registered against the Indian Youth Congress President, Mr Randeep Singh Surjewala.

In a memorandum submitted to the Additonal Deputy Commissioner here, the Ludhiana DYC President, Mr Pawan Dewan, alleged that the Haryana Chief Minister, Mr Om Prakash Chautala, wanted to destroy the strong roots of the Congress by resorting to such tactics.

He alleged that the Indian National Lok Dal was a part of the National Democratic Alliance which was the prime rival of the Congress. He said the Youth Congress would not allow criminalisation of politics or any damage to the secularism.


After film stars, it's turn of Ludhianvis
From Ruchika Mohindra
Tribune News Service

LUDHIANA, July 12 — Mirror, mirror on the wall;

Who is the fairest of them all?

It is probably with this question in mind that a large number of women flock to Indira Manchanda. And she ensures that each of her customers goes back satisfied.

With only three years of business in the city, 28-year-old Indira has carved a niche for herself in the world of making people look beautiful. "Beauty is actually within you, but since your outward appearance is what forms the first impression, it is very important to look good, "she says.

Indira has spent more than seven years in this profession and specialises in cosmetic acupuncture for various kinds of skin treatment, like under-eye dark circles, pigmentation, removal of wrinkles, pimple and acne scars. She is helped by her husband Suraj Manchanda, who specialises in hair weaving treatment. The couple was the first to bring the culture of hair weaving and cosmetic acupuncture to the megacity.

While Indira's clients are mainly from Ludhiana, Jalandhar, Amritsar and Chandigarh, Suraj's clientele is spread all over north India. Says Indira, "Customer satisfaction is my primary concern. I prefer not to advertise my business and rely on the word of mouth that my customers spread after they are satisfied with my work."

She is also engaged in providing slimming techniques like neuro-muscular stimulation. Indira informs that she is an extrovert and was into a lot of extra-curricular activities in school. After completing her Class XII, she started a course in beauty treatment and the institute head in Delhi offered her a job in the Mumbai branch of the institute. It was there that she worked with film stars and models, including Preity Zinta, Grusha Kapoor, Ruby Bhatia and Ruhi.

After a brief stint in Mumbai, she decided to shift to Bangalore and later after her marriage with Suraj, the duo decided to settle in the latter's home town, Ludhiana. She says that for the past three years that she started work here, she has not had to look back.

Indira feels that it is very important for women to be both emotionally and financially independent. "No one knows what lies in store in the future. So, everyone should be independent."

Being a perfectionist, she also says that it is her aim to be nothing but the best. "Till the time one is working, one should aim at the stars and only then will one get them."Back


Free eye camp on July 15
From Our Correspondent

LUDHIANA, July12 — The Rural Hospital Welfare Society Mansuran in association with the Bhai Ghanaiya Ji Seva Sanstha (Haibowal) will organise a free eye operation camp at Nurpur Bet on July15. Medicines and spectacles for the patients operated upon will be provided by the society.

Dr Ramesh of the Mansuran eye bank said, "The eye bank will hold an eye donation exhibition and pledge forms for eye donation will be filled on the spot".

The eye bank will also organise a special training programme for primary school teachers for the students' dental hygiene on July 17 at the hospital with the help of the Department of Health.

An exhibition on dental hygiene and care by the District Dental Mobile Unit and case presentation to schoolteachers by dental surgeons would be the main attractions of the training programme.Back


Gagat elected president
From Kuldip Bhatia
From Our Correspondent

LUDHIANA, July 12 — Mr Hans Raj Gagat, a trade union leader, was elected President of the Joint Action Committee of all Municipal Corporation and Municipal Committee Employees’ Unions of Punjab in a state-level convention of MC employees’ unions held here. Gagat has been authorised to nominate other office-bearers of the action committee. The Safai Labour Union of the municipal corporation has hailed the election of Mr Gagat, saying that the move would lead to a positive change in the government attitude towards dealing with the pending demands of the municipal workers. Dr D.P. Khosla, patron and Mr Ram Parkash Gill, Chairman of the District Valmiki Sabha have also welcomed the election of Mr Gagat.Back


'Withdraw case against Surjewala'
From Our Correspondent

LUDHIANA, July 12 — The District Youth Congress has urged the President, Mr K.R. Narayanan, to ask the Haryana Government to withdraw the criminal case registered against the Indian Youth Congress President, Mr Randeep Singh Surjewala.

In a memorandum submitted to the Additonal Deputy Commissioner here, the Ludhiana DYC President, Mr Pawan Dewan, alleged that the Haryana Chief Minister, Mr Om Prakash Chautala, wanted to destroy the strong roots of the Congress by resorting to such tactics.

He alleged that the Indian National Lok Dal was a part of the National Democratic Alliance which was the prime rival of the Congress. He said the Youth Congress would not allow criminalisation of politics or any damage to the secularism.


PSEB to pay token compensation
From Jupinderjit Singh
Tribune News Service

LUDHIANA, July 12 — The District Consumer Redressal Forum has awarded a ‘token’ compensation to a PSEB consumer who was wrongly charged by the board.

Ms Moxi Shahi, a resident of Harmoksh Niwas Civil Lines here, had complained to the forum that she was charged power supply bill on commercial rates, whereas she was the bearer of a domestic category power connection. The consumer said she was handed over a bill of Rs 17,242 for a period of more than one year.

She said she was already being overcharged and the payment of such a huge bill was beyond her means. She added that she had discovered the commercial rate charges after payment of few bills, but the PSEB had said there was no mistake. She also complained that the PSEB had turned down her request for paying the huge bill through instalments.

However, the PSEB replied before the forum that the consumer was wrongly charged because of a mistake in filling entries in the computer. The PSEB representative said the board had realised its mistake on its own and even adjusted the bills of the consumer and rectified the mistake. The Forum observed that though the PSEB had rectified the mistake, the wrong-charging amounted to deficiency of service. Thus, a ‘token’ compensation of Rs 1000 in addition to costs of Rs 500 should be paid to the consumer.


Honour for progressive fish farmer
From Our Correspondent

LUDHIANA, July 12 — Darshan Singh Tibiba has been chosen for Jagjivan Ram Kisan Puruskar, 1990. The award presentation ceremony will be held on July 17 at Vigyan Bhavan, New Delhi. The award includes a cash prize of Rs 1 lakh and a citation.

The awardee owns a fish farm ‘chardi kalan’. He is a progressive farmer in Hiyatpura village near Ludhiana, which is an excellent example of integrated fish cum-pig-dairy-cum-poultry and ago-forestry. He started farming with 7 acres, in Bhagwanpura village near Samrala, in 1969. He presently owns 82 acres, which has recently been divided among four brothers.

Being one of the pioneers, he started fish farming in 1983 in 1 acre. Now, he is doing fish farming in 9 acres and 12 more acres are on contract basis, exclusively for fish farming. Since profits through fish culture were high, he gradually expanded pisciculture to 28 acres by 1990 and presently to 38 acres.

To reduce the expenditure on feed and fertilizer, he integrated fish farming with poultry in 1983. Starting with 500 birds, he presently has 10,000 birds. His major achievement is sustaining resources through recycling. He added dairying in 1988 with 5 cattle, which has now increased to 130. In 1994 , Mr Darshan Singh started with 8 pigs and the total number of pigs in his farm at present is 125.

Some acres are also used for growing poplar, sugarcane, eucalyptus, fodder chilies, brinjal and cucumber. He also grows wheat, paddy, potatoes and sugarcane. He believes in recycling of farm waste. According to him, fish feed consists of 15 per cent of feaces of poultry. The shed of the pigs has been built on fish farm and the urine and other waste products of the pigs are poured in for fish food.

In a semi-flow through system, he irrigates the crops with the nutrient-rich pond water. This not only helps in increasing production of fish, but also reduces expenditure towards fertilisation of the terrestrial crops. He started using press mud as one of the components in fish feed.

Press mud is rich in nutrients and has been utilised in agriculture and integrated fish farming to minimise the use of inorganic fertilisers and organic manure to improve pond productivity. Soyabean oil cake, sunflower oil cake, fish meal and mineral mixture are the other ingredients used by Mr Darshan Singh. He is also a mechanic. He hammered his own combine,saving almost 50 per cent of the cost. Despite being without three fingers in his left hand, he has prepared strawer reapers and sold many pieces.


‘Expectations not met’
Tribune News Service

LUDHIANA, July 12 — The state Bhartiya Janata Party president, Mr Brij Lal Rinwa, said today, the Badal government had yet to come upto the expectations of people. He said the government was yet to provide a corruption-free administration and there was no coordination between the BJP and Shiromani Akali Dal workers at the grassroot level.

In an informal conversation with reporters here today, the state BJP President reiterated that the BJP workers were feeling ignored and resentment was prevailing among the party cadre. He attributed this mainly to the lack of coordination between the two parties. However, he said, coordination had started at the top level as the leaders of the two parties had started meeting from time to time.

He listed three reasons for the dissatisfaction among the people in the state.First, he said, “we have not been able to provide a corruption- free government to the people”, although a lot had been done in this regard. Second, he pointed out, there was no unity and coordination among the workers of the two parties at the grassroot level, which was very essential for the coalition to succeed. Third he said, “we have yet to come up to the expectations of the people”.

The BJP leader tried to play cool over his recent statements and the reaction from the Punjab Chief Minister, Mr Prakash Singh Badal. He sought to dispel all notions of differences between the two coalition partners. He claimed the coalition was working successfully and will complete its full term.

Replying to a question on claiming equal share in power, he said, he had been misinterpreted and misunderstood. He clarified, he had only exhorted his party workers to gear up and strengthen themselves, so that they can have claim for more power. “I have only demanded equal status not equal share in power”, he said.

Asked whether the BJP will continue to play as a junior partner to the SAD in the next elections, he claimed, there is no junior or senior partner in a coalition, seeking to draw a parallel with the coalition government at the centre.

On the issue of greater autonomy to the states, he said, the BJP had no differences with the SAD. He hailed the statement of Mr Badal, where he said that his demand for more autonomy should not be equated with that of by the J&K government. However, without naming Mr S S Dhindsa, he expressed reservations about the comments he made recently on the issue. He also clarified that the BJP had differences with the SAD on Anandpur Sahib Resolution.

He reiterated his opposition to the hike in power tariff. He said, his party was still opposed to free electricity to the farm sector. He said, the issue could have been settled more amicably without creating any heartburn among different sections. He evaded the question on whether his party was taken into confidence on the issue or not.

A group of industrialists opposed to the hike in power tariff also met Mr Rinwa . He reportedly assured them that the matter will be taken up with the Chief Minister.


A passport to success
From Our Correspondent

LUDHIANA, July 12 — There is a significant shift of emphasis to non-traditional courses in colleges and private institutes. BIT (Bachelor of Information Technology) is becoming one of the favourite courses for higher education. A host of institutes are offering this job-oriented course.

BCA (Bachelor of Computer Applications) which was a hot favourite among students last year has been taken over by BIT, this year. Students attribute this shift to a wider scope in the future of information technology.

The trend of joining BIT has changed the ratio of seats in Ludhiana. As the mainstream colleges are unable to meet the growing demand for IT professionals here, students are rushing to Jalandhar and Amritsar in large numbers. The latest trend of increasing demand for BIT courses is attributable to vast employment prospects in this field. There is clearly a paradigm shift to non-traditional courses.

An information technology course has become a passport to success, to big money and a job abroad. The advent of Internet has opened the floodgates of job opportunities, as businesses, big and small, rush to cash in on the possibilities offered by the net.

Many private institutes have also emerged. They range from small ones that offer a single course with an investment of Rs 1 lakh to large facilities offering a variety of courses with investments of a couple of crores.


Three post offices to shift
Tribune News Service

LUDHIANA, July 12 — After the attachment of the ‘owned’ buildings of the Postal Department here, it is the turn of the rented buildings of the department to face closure and/or shifting.

The Ghumar Mandi Post Office has already closed down as the department had to vacate it because it lost the possession case to a widow, who was the owner of the building. Though the closure was effected last week, the department has yet to find a new place for operating the post office in Ghumar Mandi.

Tenders have been floated in the papers demanding new office sites and for the time being the post office is functioning from the General Post Office at Ferozepore Road. The shifting has caused a lot of inconvenience to the public as they have commute long distances for work at the post office.

The next in line is the post office at Chaura Bazaar. The post office will function from the present rented location only for the next six months as the department lost a case to its owner and has been directed to vacate the apartment within six months. The third one near the old courts is also in the process of shifting as it is being relocated to Rishi Valmiki Nagar as the present building having the post office is not in good shape.

According to Mr M.K. Khan, Senior Superintendent, Post Office, though inconvenience results due to frequent dislocations, yet the department was making adequate arrangements for early and proper location of the post office. 


A versatile personality
From Shivani Bhakoo

LUDHIANA, July 12 — Destiny provides opportunity and opens doors to achieve unprecedented success for some. This seems to have happened to Jyotica Verma, the winner of many a beauty contests. In the process, she has succeeded in raising the profile of the city otherwise known only for its garbage and pollution.

‘’ It happened by chance,” recalls Jyotica Verma. “One day, we friends were sitting and chatting, when we saw an advertisement for Miss Ludhiana Beauty Contest. We all applied for it just for fun. All my friends backed out at the last moment and I was the only one left to participate. Since my mother had always encouraged me, I went ahead and contested and I was fortunate enough to get the crown. This was way back in 1992,” said Jyotica.

Later on, the winners of different cities of Punjab were approached for Miss Punjab ‘92, which was to be held at Jalandhar. Again she was lucky enough to get the Miss Punjab ‘92 first runner-up crown. Besides taking part in beauty contests, she also managed to complete her B.Sc. Home Science during this time.

She kept on winning title after title. The next title won by her was in 1993, which was named “Fashion Fiesta Queen”, organised at Jalandhar. At ‘The Crazy Show’, organised by the Nehru Siddhant Kendra, she won the ‘Gracious Queen’ title. In 1994, Ayur Queen contest was held at Ludhiana, in which she won a pure silver crown and gift vouchers of Rs 25,000. She was lucky enough to beat more than 30 participants in each contest.

Later, she started working at the Guru Nanak International Public School. She said,” I did not want to study further, but after sometime, I realised that my education was incomplete. So I did Masters in English. After that, I did one-year Diploma in Textile Designing . I broke the institute’s record by securing maximum marks and they offered me a job in the polytechnic itself “.

Jyotica is a very versatile and restless person, always on the move. Besides all these achievements, she has done Visharad in kathak dance. Now everyone dances to her tune as well, for she holds dance classes, along with her mother, for the students, both young and old. Recently she held “personality grooming and personality development classes” for the members of Niharika Ladies Club. She taught them about deportment and also gave them tips on how to converse and how to dress up for different occasions.

But this is not the end of the road for Jyotica. She continues to strive to achieve more.


Traffic rules training for school students
Tribune News Service

LUDHIANA, July 12 — The Ludhiana traffic police has embarked up a novel plan to educate school students in traffic rules by providing them practical training.

Beginning today, the Superintendent of Police (Traffic), Mr S.S. Bhatti, and the road safety missionary, Mr Shyam Sunder Juneja, have proposed to take all the school children being trained in the children’s traffic training park on the busy roads to learn traffic rules. A large number of children studying in Government Senior Secondary School, Kundan Puri, were the first ones to experiment the new proposal today.

Informed Mr Bhatti, “Through practical experience, children will be able to learn traffic rules faster.” He also informed that in this month alone, 100 school children each from six other schools had received training in the children’s traffic training park. He added that the traffic police had started a special drive for educating villagers in the nearby villages regarding traffic rules, and the road safety missionary, alongwith three head constables, were showing film clipping on a projector to the villagers.

He said so far such training camps had been organised at Dhandaran, Gill, Bulara, Kanganwal, Choorpur, Mundian Khurd and Khasian and that camps would soon be organised at Jassian and Ayali Khurd. He added that till June, the traffic police had issued 38,316 challans and fine collected was around Rs. 59,15,330.Back


Cop booked for bid to kill wife
Tribune News Service

LUDHIANA, July 12 — A police constable, along with three other family members, have been accused by his wife of attempting to kill her.

According to an FIR registered at the Focal Point Police Station, Nirmal Singh, his mother, Kamaljit Kaur, and two sisters, Jyoti and Renu, are alleged to have immolated Gurdeep Kaur on July 10 at their Tajpur road residence. It is alleged that all accused had been demanding a Maruti car as dowry and when this demand was not fulfilled, they tried to kill her.

It is alleged that all the accused fled from the spot and the victim was admitted to Civil Hospital by her neighbours. A case under Sections 307 and 34 of the IPC has been registered.

One killed
Suresh Rao was killed and another person, Tika Ram, was injured when the bicycle on which they were riding was hit by an unknown four-wheeler. The police has registered a case under Sections 279, 338, 427 and 304-A of the IPC.

Liquor seized
Ten bottles of liquor were seized from Ismail by ASI, Avtar Singh of police station division no. 2. The accused has been booked under Sections 61, 1 and 14 of the IPC.

Thief nabbed
Tun Tun Malya, a resident of Bihar, was arrested by the police during special checking and the police recovered one National video cassette recorder, six video cassettes and one Texla stabilizer from him. SI Karam Singh, SHO, police station, division no. 2, informed that all the articles had been stolen by the accused from Anandpur Kalaur. A case under Sections 379 and 411 of the IPC has been registered against the accused.

Gamblers held
The police arrested three persons for gambling and seized a pack of playing cards and Rs 2775 from them. The three accused — Bajinder Pal Singh, Bhim Sain and Rajesh Kumar — have been booked under Sections 13, 3 and 67 of the Gambling Act.

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