Thursday, October 12, 2000,
Chandigarh, India
L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


War of succession in Gurdwara Nanaksar 
By Vimal Sumbly
Tribune News Service

JAGRAON (Ludhiana), Oct 11 — A deceptive calm prevails in Gurdwara Nanaksar, one of the oldest shrines in the area, as rival factions continue to be engaged in a war of succession and supremacy. The two factions are led by two ageing leaders — Baba Kundan Singh and Baba Sadhu Singh — both of whom want to instal their respective favourites as the main successor and caretaker of the shrine, whose assets run into crores of rupees.

Gurdwara Nanaksar was founded by Baba Nand Singh decades ago. After he passed away in 1943, the control of the shrine passed into the hands of Baba Isher Singh. Everything passed smoothly till 1963, when Isher Singh died. A-10-member committee was founded for managing the affairs of the gurdwara. They included three disciples of the Sant, Sant Naraian Singh, Sant Sadhu Singh and Sant Kundan Singh. It was at this time that the war of succession started among the three.

Meanwhile, Sant Naraian Singh filed a suit in the court. However, the suit was withdrawn after a compromise was arrived. But after Sant Naraian Singh’s death, the war of supremacy became direct between Sant Sadhu Singh and Sant Kundan Singh. Both of them claim to be the mukhya follower of Baba Isher Singh. The two had reportedly arrived at an agreement to manage the affairs of the gurdwara.

Both the Sants are in an advanced age and are mostly unable to perform the seva and ardas at the shrine. Both of them depute their respective mukhyas (followers) to perform the duty. While Bhai Lakha Singh has been performing ardas and seva on behalf of Sant Sadhu Singh, Sant Kundan Singh had assigned the job to Bhai Harbhajan Singh.

Sant Sadhu Singh’s followers claim that Bhai Lakha Singh has the approval of the court to perform the seva. Supporters of Sant Kundan Singh are putting forth their case with the same arguments. They maintain that when Sant Sadhu Singh can nominate his mukhya for the seva, why cannot Sant Kundan Singh do the same.

It was on the same issue on October 6 last that the supporters of the rival groups clashed with each other. Bhai Harbhajan Singh had come to perform seva on behalf of Sant Kundan Singh, which was objected to by Bhai Lakha Singh and his supporters. This led to an arms scuffle between the two groups which resulted in injury to several of them.

Gurdwara Nanaksar has flourished into a popular shrine with a worldwide following which extends to the countries like USA, the United Kingdom, Canada and Germany. Non-resident Indian followers have donated huge money leading to the assets of the shrine running into crores of rupees.

The shrine also runs a 40-bed hospital. Besides there are palatial buildings housing the sants and sevadars within the 30 acre shrine complex. There is a picturesque pond within the shrine which attracts pilgrims from far and wide.


Plan to check pollution gathers dust
By Jupinderjit Singh
Tribune News Service

LUDHIANA, Oct 11 — Does the government make plans and projects just to raise hopes among masses or is it really serious about implementing them? Well, the former seems to be the case with a time-targeted action plan for combating pollution in the city.

While pollution of all kinds is growing rapidly in the city, the much publicised plan, conceived seven years ago to combat the problem, remains stillborn.

Prepared and finalised in 1993, the plan aimed to make the city pollution-free by 1995. It is anybody's guess that how far the plan was followed in letter and spirit as the pollution level in the city has risen considerably and is constantly on the rise.

The ambitious project came into being on October 23, 1993. The Punjab Pollution Control Board (PPCB) had organised a workshop on drafting a plan for the prevention and control of pollution in the city. Representatives of the PPCB, the Department of Science, Technology and Environment, representatives of almost all organised sector of industries, the Municipal Corporation, the Punjab Water Supply and Sewerage Board, the Chief Town Planner Punjab and the District Administration officials had all agreed to the proposed plan.

The PPCB later printed the plan in a book form. Besides circulating it in the state the plan also received wide publicity in media as well. However, soon people forget about it and the printed plan found its way in libraries of various department, including the PPCB, as a show piece.

According to a copy of the plan Rs 13 crore was the estimated cost which was to be borne by different departments concerned. The plan also earmarked execution responsibility to the different departments. The state government was also requested for liberal supply of funds for the success of the plan.

The plan demanded action on six fronts. It aimed for pollution control with respect to urbanisation, industrialisation, vehicular activity, noise, agro waste and quality monitoring of various parameters of pollution in ambient air, surface water and underground water.

Even seven years after the formation of the plan, not much action has been taken. What is more baffling is that the departments concerned do not even possess much knowledge about the plan. As it was prepared long ago, the officials of the departments concerned had changed several times. It required some effort to even trace the files of the plan.

As per the solid waste management desired by the plan, the Municipal Corporation was supposed to prepare a scheme for disposal of solid wastes. The MC had to identify and notify separate land for this purpose but it has yet to do it. Moreover, the MC and the PWD were assigned the job of covering all road berms and bylanes in the city so that the dust did not rise on account of vehicular or pedestrian traffic. However, the dust flows as ever.

One of the other significant plan was to install sewage treatment plant in the city as the underground water was getting contaminated and sewerage water flowing openly was a perfect breeding ground for germs, bacteria and insects of all kind that spread diseases. The plan was to be prepared by the MC while the Punjab Sewerage Board was the executing agency.

But seven years hence, the sewage treatment plant has yet to see the light of the day. Mr S. K. Verma, SE of the board, said it was only an executing agency and the MC or the state government had to supply the funds for the project. He said as no funds were provided the treatment plant could not be installed.

He, however, assured that the sewage treatment plant would be installed shortly as it was included in the Sutlej action plan which was being implemented.

Mr Pradeep Gupta, XEN, PPCB, when contacted said the board could not be held responsible for the spread of pollution of all kinds. He said the board was assigned the duty of combating industrial pollution and claimed that it had achieved success at this front as most of the industries in the city had installed treatment plants. Mr Gupta, however, did also did not know much details about the exact status of the plan.

Incidentally, it was also decided that a committee with the DC as its head and with representatives of all the departments concerned would review the progress achieved by the various departments to control pollution. However, the committee also did not meet after 1997.

While Deputy Commissioner S. K. Sandhu could not be contacted, sources revealed that the plan failed as many departments were involved in its implementation which led to differences among them. The sources said as the matter was delayed the authorities too lost interest in the plan and it was conveniently forgotten.Back


Move on water cut draws flak
By Kuldip Bhatia

LUDHIANA, Oct 11 — The proposed slashing of water supply in the city by the Municipal Corporation (MC) has drawn a flak from residents and a large number of groups of residents, welfare associations, including representatives of trade and industry, which they described was totally uncalled for and based on 'misplaced belief' of the civic administration.

The MC general house adopted a resolution at its meeting held during last month to discontinue the water supply during the afternoon in view of fast depletion in ground water level in the city during the past few years. Councillors, cutting across party lines, had vehemently opposed the proposal, expressing their disagreement with the assertion by the Commissioner, Dr S.S.Sandhu, and the Mayor, Mr Apinder Singh Grewal, that the city could do without water supply in the afternoon and supply of piped water for a duration of 10 to 12 hours could not continue for long in the wake of alarming drop in the ground water level and a host of effective measures for water conservation failing to take off.

Interestingly, it was only when women Councillors intervened that the proposal could be put through, albeit with a condition that it would be implemented after the forthcoming festive season.

Many of the citizen groups, both in the old city and the new localities, to whom Ludhiana Tribune talked, contested the claim of the civic authorities that water supply was being provided for 10-12 hours a day. The claim they maintained was 'unrealistic' and 'misplaced'. Most of the city areas, complained the residents, either do not receive any water supply in the morning or the pressure is so feeble that for those residing far away from the source, it is as good as nothing. "If the water supply in the morning is inadequate or elusive and the proposal to discontinue the same in the afternoon is given effect, people would be left with water supply only during evening hours or in other words, water would be available only once in 24 hours."

The civic administration, however, feels that apprehensions of the residents are without any basis. Says the Superintending Engineer (O and M) of the MC, Mr S.S.Jandu, "Ludhiana is for all practical purposes a city now and the people have to learn to live like residents of other metropolitan centres. They have been so much used to uninterrupted supply of water that some restraints, which are absolutely necessary as a part of conservation of resources, scare them."

He also disagreed that morning water supply was erratic or inadequate. The piped water supply covered about 60 per cent of the city population through 213 tubewells. Occasional disruption due to power failure or mechanical problems, notwithstanding, the average rate of breakdown was between 1 and 1.5 per cent. The MC intended to cover another 20 per cent population with the completion of a Rs 33.52-crore plan by the end of this year under which 70 more tubewells would be commissioned and 516 km of water supply lines would be laid in various localities.

Expressing serious concern on the drop in the water table in the city, Mr Jandu observed that the problem had to be dealt with on war footing. In the past 52 years, the ground water level had gone down from 15 feet to 125 feet plus and the drop in the past 10 years alone was around 40 feet. Along with curtailment in water supply duration, the civic body also contemplated taking several conservation measures like creation of harvesting wells, injection wells and pit wells in the city to charge ground water. In fact, the building bylaws have been amended by the MC to make it mandatory for the multi-storey residential and commercial buildings to have water harvesting wells.

Unconvinced by the MC pleas for the dire need to conserve water resources, the Punjab Pradesh Beopar Mandal general secretary, Mr Mohinder Aggarwal, has sought the intervention of the National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) against the move to slash the water supply. In a petition to the NHRC, Mr Aggarwal has pleaded that water being the basic need to survive for the human beings, the MC be directed not to go ahead and to maintain status quo. Copies of the petition have also been sent to the Punjab and Haryana High Court, with a request that it be treated as a public interest litigation (PIL).


Central health team returns
Tribune News Service

LUDHIANA, Oct 11 — The five-member central team which stayed here for a few days returned to Delhi today after collecting samples from the areas from where dengue cases were reported.

Sources of the Health Department said that the National Ant-Malaria Programme collected mosquito larvae from 30 houses which reported dengue cases. The larvae would be studied and investigated in Delhi. The officials said that the report would be available in next few days.

Meanwhile, the health officials confirmed that the number of dengue cases had reached 32 with some more cases being reported yesterday and today.

While unconfirmed reports said that one more person had died of dengue in a private hospital, the health officials said that no serology tests was conducted on the patient.

The health officials maintained that this was not an epidemic as all the reported were of sporadic nature. They said there was no cause to feel concerned about. They pointed out that cases were reported from different parts of the city and no two cases were reported from a single place, which could make people apprehensive about the epidemic.Back


Economy measures to face petro hike
By Manoj Kumar
Tribune News Service

LUDHIANA, Oct 11 — The recent hike in prices of petroleum products has once again awakened the memories of oil crisis that had shattered the economies of developing as well as developed countries in the seventies. Once again people are frightened in the country , especially those belonging to the middle class. Ludhiana Tribune spoke to a cross section of people to know their views regarding what could be done at the individual level to face the situation.

Could not we introduce some economy measures individually like not using cars or scooters for a day in a week, when asked this question, Dr Mukesh K. Arora, a Senate member of Panjab University, said: “The life is so busy that it is almost impossible to think about a day without own car. Using personal vehicles is a necessity. No doubt, the media of not using the cars or scooters may help the economy but it will create inconvenience for most of us.”

Mr Albair Singh, a transporter, said, “The increase in petro prices has certainly forced people to think about saving oil in one way or other. There are number of families where both husband and wife may have to go in the same direction but they used to go on different scooters but they will think twice while using two vehicles.”

There are number of people who blame the government for the present crises. Ms Suchint, a student of Government College for Women, while criticising the government, said, “The government should have thought about it earlier and prepared some contingency plans. The idea of a car-less day in a week is not a bright one. Otherwise there will be only rickshaws and tongas on that day.” However, Ms Amrita, a B.A., IInd year student agreed that people can think about it provided the public transport system was efficient.

Ms Radha Vatsa, Vice-Principal, GCW College, said it was, no doubt, a good idea but not a practical one. Rather there should be an awareness movement to conserve the petro products. It would save the precious foreign exchange that was now being spent on it.

Dr Ramesh Inder Bal, another college lecturer asked if people started using rickshaws and horses to save the ‘precious’ oil then how we would handle the dirt and animal waste. She remarked people had adopted a luxurious life style resulting in waste of natural resources. Now it was the duty of the government to follow the mandate. She further asked if the government could provide subsidised rice and electricity then why did not it provide subsidised oil.

Mr Ravi Kant Sharma, business head of Ebony departmental store suggested, “Time has come when we will have think about alternative energy resources like solar energy, battery/electricity operated cars and other vehicles. In view of our busy life style, it is very difficult to think about car-pooling or a car-less day. But the management of petro products is a serious issue. We should start thinking about it.”

Mr P. Lal, a retired PCS official, presented a different opinion. He said, “Conservation of petroleum for a single day will not serve any purpose. Unfortunately, people are not ready for steps like not using cars on a working day. On the other hand, the government may think to close all the city petrol pumps in the country in a week to create awareness among the people regarding the problem.”

Interestingly, Mr Joginder Singh, a petrol station owner, said people were already taking economy measures. He said earlier he was selling about 30-40,000 litres oil per week but the sales had now come down drastically, about 25,000 litres per week.Back


Woman commits suicide; in-laws held
From Our Correspondent

MACHHIWARA, Oct 11 — Mrs Angrej Kaur Gejo (28), wife of Mr Mohan Singh, set herself afire after a clash with her in-laws yesterday in Mand Jharaudi village. She died on the way to the local Civil Hospital.

The police took her body custody and registered a case under sections 304B and 34IPC against her husband, Mohan Singh and her mother-in-law , on the basis of the FIR lodged by her father Mr. Karnail Singh, a resident of Khanna.

Angrez Kaur belonged to a Dalit family. She had married Mohan Singh, a labourer, six years ago. She is survived by a daughter and a son. Back


Congressmen burn Badal's effigy
From Vimal Sumbly
Tribune News Service

JAGRAON (Ludhiana), Oct 11— Congress workers led by the state president Capt Amarinder Singh yesterday burnt the effigy of Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal, in the grain market here,in protest against the failure of various government agencies to purchase paddy from the farmers. They were shouting slogans against the state and union government for letting down the farmers, whose paddy was lying unclaimed in the grain markets across the state.

Although not many people participated in the dharna, the PCC chief claimed that the programme was organised at a short notice. Moreover, he claimed that it was not a rally and was a simple dharna to register the anger and protest of the party against the injustice meted out to the farmers by the state and the central governments.

Addressing the dharna Capt Amarinder Singh came down heavily on the Badal government accusing the Chief Minister of adopting an ostrich like attitude. He pointed out, although the Chief Minister claimed that he belonged to the farming class, yet he had failed the farmers of the state.

The PCC leader served an ultimatum on the Badal government to clear paddy from all mandis of the state before October 17. Otherwise, he declared that the farmers supported by Congress workers would gherao the residence of the Chief Minister at Chandigarh on October 17. He said, the Chief Minister would not be allowed to move out of his residence till all paddy from the state was not purchased by the government.

He cautioned against complacency on the part of the government and warned that a quiet unrest was brewing among the farmers as they were feeling let down. He pointed out, hundreds of farmers were camping in the mandis for more than a month and still they were not able to sell their paddy. He accused the government agencies of deliberately raising petty objections with regard to the purchase of paddy. He pointed out, for the past so many years the farmers had been producing the same paddy. All these years no objections regarding its quality were raised. "And how come that paddyhas failed all specifications all of a sudden"?, he asked while referring to the statement of FCI chairman Bhure Lal that most of the paddy had failed specification tests.

Capt Amarinder Singh suggested that Mr Badal should end his alliance with the BJP because the latter had failed him. He pointed out, it was the BJP- led government at the Centre, which should share the blame for the failure to purchase paddy from the farmers. He alleged, the Centre was not sensitive towards the problems of farmers and Mr Badal was becoming a party to this insensitivity.

The PCC workers also submitted a memorandum to the government through the SDM Jagraon. The memorandum expressed grave concern over the plight of farmers as their paddy was lying unsold in mandis all over Punjab. The memorandum warned that it could lead to serious social unrest which would be very difficult to control.

Led by Capt Amarinder, the PCC leaders who included, Ludhiana MP Gurcharan Singh Ghalib, the all India chairman of the Indian National Youth Congress Urban Development Cell Pawan Dewan, state president of the Youth Congress Devinder Singh Babbu, secretary PCC K K Bawa, vice president of the PYC Amarjeet Singh Tikka, Nahar Singh Gill, Darshan Singh Khera, former ministers Rajbinder Singh, Darshan Singh Brar, Ishwar Singh, Harmohinder Singh and Jasbir Singh took out a procession and blocked the Ferozepur Road for some time. Earlier they burnt the effigy of the Cheif Minister.


Call to farmers to observe ‘black day’
From Our Correspondent

LUDHIANA, Oct 11 — Eight Opposition parties and a faction of the Bharatiya Kisan Union (BKU) have given a call to the farmers of the state to observe a black day on October 14 to lodge their protest against failure of the government agencies to purchase paddy and other ‘anti-farmer and anti-people policies’ of both the union and the state governments.

According to the state president of the Janata Dal (S), Mr Harish Khanna, the activists of these parties would join the farmers in holding mass demonstrations at district headquarters and would extensively tour the rural areas to mobilise farmers for the protest.

A joint meeting of Sarb Hind Shiromani Akali Dal, the Janata Dal (S), CPM, the Communist Party of India, Lok Bhalai Party, the Samajwadi Party, the Rashtriya Janata Dal, the Samajwadi Party and BKU (Rajewal), held here today deplored the apathy and indifference of the government towards the plight of paddy growers. The failure of the procurement agencies to come to the rescue of the farmers was ample proof of non-performance and non-governance of the government. In this context the meeting criticised the statement of Mr Bhure Lal, Chairman of the Food Corporation of India on the quality of paddy lying in Punjab mandis and observed that the situation had further worsened after the ‘irresponsible’ statement of the FCI chairman.

The political parties also flayed substantial hike in the prices of petroleum products, effected under pressure from the IMF and the World Bank, which they said would break the backbone of the farmers, the small scale industrial sector and the common people.


Market to get a face-lift
By Asha Ahuja

LUDHIANA, Oct 11 — The Sarabha Nagar Market will change dramatically in appearance in 2001. At present, the market is usually overcrowded and presents a chaotic appearance. The Municipal Corporation has received many complaints shortage of parking space and drinking in the cars parked in the market. Incidents of eve teasing also have been reported in the market. The Executive Engineer (Horticulture), Mr Jaswinder Singh Bilga, the Secretary, Traders Association, Mr Prit Pal Singh and the president of the association, Mr Ashok Arora, roped in Mr Ajay Johal and his wife, architects and landscape consultants with the Municipal Corporation of Chandigarh, and after getting approval from the authorities decided to give a face-lift to the market to make shopping here a pleasureable experience.

Mr Johal says, “I am going to redesign the market to allow freer movement. The parking lot should be delinked from the shopping area. I plan to have two main entrances to the parking area. In the centre of the two sites for parking cars, there will be a wide space for pedestrians to enter the market. Between the street and the parking area, shrubs and other fast growing plants will be planted for physical demarcation and a pleasant visual impact. Green trees will also be planted to provide shade. With two parking lots, the street will appear linear and add interest to this shopping complex.”

A water fountain in the centre of the market will be an added attraction. It will be 40 feet in height. Soft music will enhance its attraction and create a soothing effect, especially in summer. The neighbouring park will be made an extension of the market where children can play while their parents shop.

The market will also have a new facade built with a single material. Mr Johal says, “the facade will have features of traditional Punjabi architecture. The complex will be completed in three months. The area for the pedestrians will remain uncovered and have open beams which will give a sense of enclosure. The beams will cast shadows and make patterns which the pedestrians will find engrossing.”

The best part is that neither the traders nor the Municipal Corporation will have to spend money on giving a face-lift to the market; the project will be executed by Dark Eyes, a company that provides road safety services. In return, it will get advertising rights in the market.


PPCB to install analysers
Tribune News Service

LUDHIANA, Oct 11 — The Punjab Pollution Control Board will shortly install computerised pollution analysers at select sites in the city. The analysers will monitor the pollution-level and provide a ready material for further studies on pollution.

Giving this information here today, Mr Pradeep Gupta XEN, PPCB here said the department had sent the proposal to the municipal corporation for the availability of land for installing the machinery. The PPCB has offered to either buy the land or take it on lease.

The analysers would be installed at four places in the city. According to Mr Gupta they would be of immense help to the department as the machinery would differentiate between the type of pollution. At present the system of analysing pollution is manual which does not differentiates between vehicular pollution or industrial pollution.

Once installed the date from the analysers would help in forming preventive measures of combating the type of pollution prevalent in the area.


Success against all odds
From Shivani Bhakoo

LUDHIANA, Oct 11— For Indira Ahluwalia, a trophy from the local gurdwara in recognition of her services to the community at large, has become her most prized possession.

Of course, she does not like to talk about it. But it is known that she has been donating regularly for various religious causes, organising the wedding and dowry of a couple of poor girls and is looking after her maid like her own daughter. “If God has been kind to me and has given me so much, why should I not try to help others?” she asks with a disarming smile.

But it is not always like this. She belongs to a conservative middle class family from Bombay. And her M.A. in psychology did not qualify her for any particular profession. Her parents arranged her marriage to Mr J.S. Ahluwalia, a businessman from far-off Ludhiana through an acquaintance. Her in-laws would not allow her to work because they felt that girls from respectable families did not work. But finally, she was able to persuade them to allow her to start some business which would not require her to step out of her house. The choice fell on beauty parlour.

Indira Ahluwalia’s beauty parlour, Grace, is today one of the most successful parlours in Ludhiana. Her husband, too, has joined her in running a showroom for beauty and skin care products after closing down his factory manufacturing electrical motors at Sahnewal. He also deals in furniture and other equipment required in beauty parlours. Her daughter, Natasha, too is helping her mother in her business even though she is still studying at a local college.

But it was not always like this. She had to struggle a lot to make a go of it. To begin with, there were objections from everybody. How can a girl from a conservative middle class family do all this? they asked. And when Indira began specialising in hair styling for the ladies, things became worse. As luck would have it, her residence, too, has the president of a gurdwara living in a house not very from hers on one side and the secretary of the gurdwara on the other.

Her Bombay background came to her rescue. “In a megapolis like Bombay, nobody bothers about anything. As a matter of fact, if you are not working, people think it must be because you are incapable of working. Therefore, when I started working in Ludhiana, it was normal thing for me. My husband too supported me in my venture”.

Luckily, others too took a rather tolerant view of things and her venture took off. “I now get a lot of satisfaction from my profession. I have an identity of my own and economic independence. Since I am operating out of my residence, I am also able to look after my household.”

She considers herself lucky that she has been invited a number of times to attend national and international conferences on beauty. It was a memorable moment for her when she got selected to represent North India at an International conference at Japan a few years back. Recently, she returned from Mumbai after giving valuable tips on beauty, hair-style and bridal make-up, to more than 900 beauticians from all over Maharashtra.

Mrs Ahluwalia feels proud and content for all her achievements. More so for the satisfaction it gives to her family, particularly her husband and the children. Even the girls working with her and learning the job claim that they also feel great satisfaction in working with her.


Rural youths caught in drug trap

The vigour and robustness associated with rural youths may soon become a passe. Drug addiction is playing havoc with the health of youth in villages of Gujerwal, Kila Raipur, Aasi Kalan, Narangwal, Jartauli, Kalakh and Majri.

According to reliable sources, at least 25 per cent of the youths in these villages are addicted. At Majri village, there are 80 homes and majority of residents are drug addicts.

The most common addictives used are zarda. "Zardey di ek pudi do rupiya di aandi hagi. Es karke bahut munde ese nu pasand karday ne," said a youth at Kalakh village. The easy availability of cough syrups makes it a hot favourite among the addicts. Another addictive substance that is preferred by the addicts is capsule number 5911. "We call it tractor in our parlance as it is gives a wonderful high," said a youth on conditions of anonymity.

Some of the addicts get their high by injecting themselves with a substance called Ford 1. Morphine injections are also used. "Many young men in our village take afeem, dodha and bhuki. A few of them smoke sukha. And yes, some find pleasure in ghota, a concoction of sukha, almonds and other intoxicants," explained Paramjit Singh, a resident of Narangwal.

The most common sources of drugs are chemists and drivers. "Many chemist shops are purposely located near educational institutions. This makes the drugs easily accessible to the students," said an elder of Gujerwal village.

In many villages, drug-peddlers belonging to the sansi tribe sell all kinds of drugs.

When asked about the possible reasons for this problem, most put the blame on peer pressure. Karamjit Singh, a resident of Dhurk ot informed, "Peer pressure is especially detrimental to those in the impressionable age. When a 12-year-old sees a 16-year-old flaunting his 'high', he, too, starts aping him." Also, in villages there are no social sanctions against the drug addicts. Drug addiction is considered more or less a natural urge for young men.

In fact, quotes such as jehda khaoo jarda, oh sau sal nahi marda: jehda khaoo afeem, ohde lvaa ava na hakim.

Some villagers stressed the role of economic factors. Tejinder Pal, a resident of Narangwal said, "The farmers lead a hard life. Many times, the economic pressure is so strong that they have no option except to take a recourse to drugs."

What compounds the problem is that drug addiction is usually detected very late. Moreover, there are hardly any organisations in villages which can offer a support system to those who want to get rid of this habit. — FOCBack


A fast that women cherish

LUDHIANA, Oct 11 — “Karva Chauth”, the most cherished fast observed by women, falls on October 16. The fast is steeped in our folk lore and is observed with ethnic fervour, for the well-being of the husband.

The fast begins with the break of dawn and lasts till the moon rises. All the day through, the woman is not expected to take even a drop of water. Elaborate ceremonies mark the beginning and end of the fast. Gifts are also exchanged among relatives and friends.

Tradition forbids a woman observing the Karva Chauth fast from doing any kind of work. Mrs K. Mehra, a local housewife who has observed more than 60 Karva Chauth fasts in her 80 years, advises women not to spend the day playing cards or watching movies. This will take away the sanctity of the fast, she asserts.

“Suhag Pitaris” and “Suhag Thalis”, for which Patiala is well known, are in great demand for the rituals connected with “Karva Chauth”. So are the “parandas” and “nalas” of Patiala. “Choodas”, Kaleeras” and coconuts wrapped in velvet and adorned with “gota” look like something out of this world.

Bangles are a must for this occasion. They come in many designs and varieties. There are bangles of contrasting colours or of matching colours, with fancy “Karas” to be worn on either side of a set of bangles. “ Suhag Thalis” present a beautiful sight. They also come in several designs and varieties. Some women use “ Suhag Pitaris” embroidered with gold thread or “gota”. — A.A


3 cases of gambling reported
Tribune News Service

LUDHIANA, Oct 11— With festive days round the corner, gambling in the megacity is on the rise. As many as three cases of gambling have been reported in the past 24 hours and Rs.1675 recovered.

In the first incident, the police arrested Puran Singh and Jit Singh while they were gambling in the area under police station division No. 5. A sum of Rs. 550 was recovered from them.

In another case, the police arrested Karamjit Singh, alias Bittu, and Narinder Pal Singh, alias Happy, and recovered Rs. 600.

The police party raided the Labour Colony last evening and arrested Pappu, Ashok and Puran Chand and recovered Rs. 525 from them.

The police has registered cases under Sections 13,3 and 67 of the Gambling Act. 


One booked on fraud charge
Tribune News Service

LUDHIANA, October 11 — The police has booked a man for collecting bilties and Rs 6,000 from a truck driver, Harmesh Kumar, although the same was meant for Harpreet Singh. The accused, Paramjit Singh, took away the papers and the cash on October 2 and was later arrested by the police under Section 420 of the IPC on October 10.

One injured
Paglu Sahni, a resident of the Tajpur road, was injured when a truck hit his bicycle.The police has registered a case under Sections 279, 337, 338 and 427 of the IPC against the driver of the truck.

Three booked
The police has booked three persons namely Gulshan Kumar, Raj Kumar, alias Raju, and Gulshan Kumar, alias Nikku on the charge of quarelling in front of the railway station, near the GT road, and blocking the traffic on Tuesday. All accused were arrested by the police and booked under Section 160 and 323 of the IPC.

Home | Punjab | Haryana | Jammu & Kashmir | Himachal Pradesh | Regional Briefs | Nation | Editorial |
Business | Sport | World | Mailbag | In Spotlight | Chandigarh Tribune | Ludhiana Tribune
50 years of Independence | Tercentenary Celebrations |
120 Years of Trust | Calendar | Weather | Archive | Subscribe | Suggestion | E-mail |