Thursday, October 19, 2000,
Chandigarh, India
L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Cricket betting halts, Divali gambling picks up
From Ruchika Mohindra
Tribune News Service

LUDHIANA, Oct 18 — The just-concluded ICC Knockout Cricket Tournament failed to cut much ice with the bookies in the region as organised gambling picks up with Divali just round the corner.

Investigations made by Tribune News Service over the past couple of days show that the mini world cup held at Nairobi failed to enthuse the local bookies as well as the bookies in the neighbouring cities of Jalandhar, Chandigarh and Jammu. Other than one or two local bookies who act as agents for the bookies in Delhi, no one had a roaring business as in the past.

It is reliably learnt that other than a bookie operating from Jawahar Nagar Camp in the Model Town area who has direct links with top bookies in Delhi, no one else went in for betting.

It may be recalled that during June and July a few bookies of the city had shifted their operations out of Ludhiana after a top police official had been named in the match-fixing scandal. But after a brief period, they returned with a vengeance and betting had continued on a massive scale since then. It was then that media reports about the scandal had forced all operations to stop. A few top bookies as well as those placing heavy bets through them were also booked by the police in the following days under various sections of the Gambling Act.

Since then there has been a slump in the business and those addicted to betting have now found an alternative recreation as well as a better way for "optimum utilisation of their money" as they allegedly also have to pay a lesser percentage to the police officers in the areas they operate.

It may also be recalled that earlier too the betting culture was brought to Ludhiana by an enterprising resident hailing from Model Town. He is earlier alleged to be a sub-agent for a Mumbai-based bookie, but later started his own operations and a lot of other people joined in the bandwagon. So now it is back to the original business for the city bookies who are alleged to be running most of the organised gambling circuits in the city.

According to information gathered by TNS over the past couple of days, one of the biggest bookies here, who is a businessman, has allegedly been running his gambling circuit in rows of houses in Narivehra. Though the gambling had begun to pick up recently, media reports exposing the organised gambling circuits in the area, had forced a slow down in gambling, but only for a few days. A visit to the area reveals that the game has once again started at full swing.

Even in Daresi, the one-time big bookie who had lost quite of lot of money in betting recently, has now opted for a safer recreation and business by organising betting circuits in the area. It is alleged that crores of rupees exchange hands each day through gambling that includes playing cards or throwing of dice (daana khelna). In fact, these bookies have now started placing bets in gambling and books are laid, especially in the dice throwing.

Other than this the two bookies operating in a partnership from the Shastri Nagar area, the one operating from Miller Ganj and the biggest bookie who had shifted his operations to Jammu after the police crackdown, have all halted their operations and are instead minting money through gambling.

Though the police has been booking several people under the Gambling Act and each day a lot of money is reported as recovered during the crackdown, it has failed to stop the large-scale gambling. Even yesterday, the police had booked 13 persons for gambling and recovered Rs 15,000 in four different cases. However, it is alleged that the police lays its hands only on regular gamblers, while leaving out those running the gambling circuits.

It is learnt that the gambling is on in a hotel located on the Railway Station road and the owners of the hotel are also placing bets on gambling. As also gambling on a massive scale is still on in a hotel near the bus stand. The hotel is owned by a local leader of the ruling party. 


Super-speciality hospital for city
From A.S. Prashar
Tribune News Service

LUDHIANA, Oct 18 — The Apollo group of hospitals will soon set up a 300-bedded multi-disciplinary super speciality hospital in the city at a cost of about Rs 75 crore.

The hospital, to be named after the head of the Namdhari sect, Satguru Partap Singh, will be established at a five-acre plot near Sherpur Chowk, donated by the Namdharis.

The Union Home Minister, Mr L.K. Advani, will be the chief guest at a function for laying the foundation stone of the hospital by the present Namdhari sect chief, Satguru Jagjit Singh, here on October 28. The Chief Minister of Punjab, Mr Parkash Singh Badal, will also attend the function.

Incidentally, the hospital was originally proposed to be set up near Chandigarh. But the final choice of site has fallen on Ludhiana.

According to information available here, the hospital is expected to be completed within 24 months of the commencement of the construction work on the building. A company called SJS Holdings Ltd. (SJS) has been incorporated with the objective of setting up the hospital in Ludhiana. The Indian Hospitals Corporation Ltd., the parent company of Apollo Hospitals group has been commissioned by the SJS to carry out a feasibility study to assess the healthcare scenario in the region and to suggest a suitable healthcare facility to be set up by the SJS. In this connection, an MoU was signed in June last year.

Accordingly, the IHC conducted a comprehensive market survey in Ludhiana and Jalandhar in June, 1999. Almost every member of the medical community of the region and general public felt that wide-ranging diagnostic, critical care and therapeutic facilities under one roof offering tertiary care have been a long overdue need of the region.

The hospital will employ 853 personnel, including contract labour but excluding consultants which includes medical, paramedical and other nonmedical staff. It is expected to generate an annual income of Rs 48.28 crore at 100 per cent utilisation. It is expected to reach the break-even level of operation at 58 per cent capacity. However, the cash break-even level stands at 47 per cent.

The Apollo Hospitals group was founded by Dr Prathap C. Reddy in 1983. Dr Reddy, a practising cardiologist in the USA, returned to India with a vision of bringing international standard medical care to India. At that time, medical care in India consisted mainly of government and charitable trust hospitals.

Apollo Hospital, Chennai, set up in 1983, was the first corporate hospital in India offering a complete range of sophisticated facilities for private paying patients. Since the group has been continuously expanding in related areas as well as setting up hospitals in different parts of India and neighbouring countries, it has consistently collaborated with other world-class institutions to ensure that it keeps well abreast of global developments and trends in technology and practices.

The IHC, the consultancy wing of Apollo Hospitals group, is the pioneer in bringing the concept of world-class healthcare to India. It has commissioned over 12 projects, including all of the Apollo Hospital state-of-the-art super speciality facilities. The IHC currently has about 20 hospital projects in India, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka and Nepal under active development.

The IHC has an active pool of distinguished medical professionals drawn from the USA, the UK, Australia and the Middle East. In addition, the IHC has access to leading hospitals and academic institutions around the world with exchange programmes and reciprocal services. Back


CBI SI booked for making threatening calls
From Our Correspondent

SAHNEWAL, Oct 18 — A case of making threatening calls and using foul language with a girl on a mobile phone has been registered against a CBI sub-inspector and his two brothers.

According to the FIR registered under Sections 294, 506, 509 of the IPC at the Sahnewal Police Station, Ms Sukhjit Kaur of Kohara village reported that on the evening of October 15, she received 20-25 threatening phone calls between 8 p.m. and 10 p.m. “The foul language used by the speaker crossed all limits of decency,” she said. As her telephone set had the call-identification facility, she noted down the number and informed the police telephonically at 10 p.m. Mr Jatinder Singh Khaira, ASI, was informed by the girl that the calls were made from a mobile phone, numbered 98141-76186, and that the phone belonged to a CBI sub-inspector, Paramjit Singh.

A police party led by Mr Shiv Dyal reached the girl’s house at Kohara and on her written complaint, it nabbed the CBI sub-inspector, Paramjit Singh, along with one of his brothers, Dharamvir Singh, from their village Bhairomunna. Kuldip Singh another brother of Paramjit Singh is still absconding.

The girl revealed to the police that six months back Dharamvir Singh and Kuldip Singh had made threatening calls to her. At Ms Sukhjit’s complaint, the police party had arrested the two. The offenders apologised for their misbehaviour and a compromise was arrived at. Ms Sukhjit said that all the calls made on the evening of October 15 were traced to the mobile phone of the sub-inspector.

Clarifying his position, Paramjit Singh, said that he was posted at Chandigarh and was happily married. Last evening, he had come to attend a marriage party at Bheromunna, his maternal parent’s house. “In between the party,” he said, “from about 8 p.m. to 9.30 p.m., my mobile phone was with my two brothers and I had no idea as to how it was being misused.” He said that he had been unnecessarily dragged into the case.Back


Mystery shrouds servant’s death
Tribune News Service

LUDHIANA, Oct 18 — There has been no clue to how a person died yesterday in a house at Madhopuri here. Ram, a servant in the house for the past 10 years, was reportedly strangulated to death. It is said that he was suffocated by a pillow and hit on the head with a cricket bat.

The police has registered a case of murder on the basis of a statement given by a brother of the employer of Ram. The employer, Mr Vijay Kumar, owner of a hosiery unit, had gone to Chintpurni with his family on October 16 and the deceased was alone in the house. Yesterday morning, a neighbour of Mr Vijay Kumar informed his brother, Mr Suresh Saluja, that the servant had been murdered.

Mr Suresh Saluja immediately rushed to the spot and the police was also called. The police suspects that the murder was committed only a few hours before it was discovered as the blood stains on the floor near the body were fresh when inspected.

Sources in the police also say that the murders probably knew Ram as the murder weapons were picked up from the house itself. However, there was no sign of a scuffle in the house. This strongly suggests that the murderers knew the servant. Ram was seen outside the house at about 7 am yesterday.

Meanwhile, a post-mortem of the body was done in LM Civil Hospital here today.


12 fresh dengue cases
Tribune News Service

LUDHIANA, Oct 18 — Although the health authorities here have been maintaining that there was no cause for concern over the spread of dengue epidemic, 12 fresh cases were reported from different parts of the city taking the total number to 77. Most of them were said to be responding well to the treatment in various hospitals of the city.

According to the Civil Surgeon, Dr Rajinder Kaur, of the 12 cases reported today, eight have been admitted to the Christian Medical College and Hospital (CMC) and one to the Dayanand Medical College and Hospital (DMC).

She said the cases were reported from different parts of the city and not any particular area.

Ruling out the possibility of an epidemic, she pointed out there was no concentration of dengue patients in any particular or single area. She said these were sporadic cases only and there was no apprehension of an epidemic. The situation was perfectly under control as the health authorities were continuously monitoring each and every case, Dr Kaur added.

Dr Kaur said all the preventive measures were being taken by the authorities to ensure that it did not take epidemic proportions. She disclosed that fogging was regularly being done in various areas of the city. Health Department and Municipal Corporation officials have been assigned the job.

The Civil Surgeon said all the patients were responding properly to the treatment. She informed that a number of them had already been discharged. She also clarified that of the total 75 cases, only 28 were confirmed cases of dengue, while the rest were only suspected.


Training on zero tillage method
From Our Correspondent

LUDHIANA, Oct 18 — It is really a testing time for the agricultural technology generators as well as for those involved in its transfer whether serving in the state agricultural department or the agricultural university. The problem of plenty and the WTO has threatened the present production technology and the need is to develop cost effective resource conservation technologies so as to reduce the cost of production.

The zero tillage seeding technology recommended by PAU has a great potential of increasing the profits of the farmers by reducing costs incurred on field preparations. This was stated by Dr Jaspinder Singh Kolar, Director of Extension Education, PAU, while addressing the concluding function of the five- day collaborative training on zero tillage for wheat. Dr Kolar said, although we are not left with any space to store foodgrains, still more than two crore people in India go to sleep without two time meals. Therefore, we have to balance the population pressure and food production.

Giving details of the training, Dr H.S. Bajwa, Extension Specialist- cum-Coordinator of this course, said that this was the first time that a specialised programme on zero tillage, a conservation technology for sustaining wheat production, had been organised instead of routine type training on crop production. He disclosed that 15 agricultural officers from the Agriculture Department and five district extension specialists from PAU attended this training programme sponsored by the Ministry of Agriculture, Government of India, from October 9 to 13.

Dr S.S. Brar and Dr Sanjeev Kumar, PAU scientists on zero tillage technology, told that for the past three to four years some farmers of Sangrur, Fatehgarh Sahib, Patiala, Moga and Gurdaspur districts have been practising the zero tillage technique for sowing wheat but this year due to the hike in the diesel price and poor procurement of paddy, the cash-starved farmers were showing keen interest to adopt zero tillage. They said this technique not only facilitated early sowing of wheat but also reduced cost of production to the tune of Rs 600 to Rs 1000 depending on the soil type, soil moisture, tractor condition, management ability, etc. 


Wanderers from the hills
From Our Correspondent

SAHNEWAL, Oct 18 — Ilam Din and Jamila, who belong to the Gujjar tribe, live with their family on the outskirts of Sahnewal. They are Muslims who originally came from Chamba. They used to graze their animals in the forests there, but when the entry of cattle in the forests was banned, they were on the brink of starvation and had to leave their home town. Thousands like them were uprooted because of the new law.

“Those who are well-to-do are still in Chamba and in Jammu, but most of us have to wander here and there in search of a living,” said Ilam Din with a touch of nostalgia in his voice. He added, “Our home land today is Punjab.

We can hope to earn a decent living here” Ilam Din and Jamila have been living in Punjab for the past 15 years. Rearing cattle is their main occupation.

The Gujjars have no faith in family planning. They believe that a large number of children mean more hands to work and better earnings. Unfortunately, children of Gujjar families remain illiterate. They remain cut off from the outside world. As soon as they grow up a little, they start tending the cattle. Thus they blindly adopt profession of their forefathers. “Education is of no significance when a man has to struggle to earn two square meals a day. Moreover, we cannot hope to send our children to school unless we lead a settled life,” says Jamila.

Ilam Din owns 20 buffaloes. The Gujjars are allowed to stay at one place depending on the will of their masters. Their stay varies from two-three months to two-three years. “It is not that easy,” says Ilam Din.

The marriage ceremony of the Gujjars is fairly simple. 


Jail excursions of Shiv Sena 
From Our Correspondent

LUDHIANA, Oct 18 — Mr Jagdish Tangri, chief of the Shiv Sena in Punjab, released a book depicting the hardships faced by Sena workers and leaders during the decade-long era of terrorism in the state, at a function held at the Shiv Sena headquarters in Gur Mandi here on Wednesday.

The book, Jail excursions of Shiv Sena is about the sacrifices made by Sena workers during the difficult period during which 56 sena leaders attained martyrdom.

The function was attended by a large number of Sena workers and leaders.


Urban colleges vs rural ones

THE Haryana Chief Minister , some time ago, ordered the transfer of 135 lecturers from urban colleges to rural ones. It is unprecedented in the history of transfers as never before have interests of rural students been taken care of by the chief executive of a state.

In case of Punjab, out of 48 government colleges, 16 are located in rural areas. Over the years, there has been a systematic ‘migration’ of teachers to cities. It is tantamount to brain drain, well within the knowledge of the Education Department. Rural colleges are facing acute shortage of teachers to the extent that 80 per cent posts are lying vacant.

Advertisements in the news-papers announced that the lecturers appointed on part-time ad-hoc basis would get Rs 4000 p.m. Clearly the net salary would not exceed Rs 2500 p.m. as about 40 per cent of the emoluments would be spent as on expenditure for commuting to the village. Further calculations bring us to the conclusion that a lecturer will receive Rs 1800 to Rs 2000 p.m., if average of monthly emoluments over a year is computed. This is a mere pittance considering their qualifications.

It is only the Chief Minister of Punjab who can come to the rescue of beleaguered rural students by ordering regular teachers’ (surplus or otherwise) transfer from urban colleges to rural ones.Ad-hoc teachers are available in plenty in the cities as they have an opportunity to supplement their income through extra-coaching.

J. R. Batra, PES-I (retd),
Addl. General Secretary,
Public Cause Ludhiana


A strong will to succeed
From Shivani Bhakoo

LUDHIANA, Oct 18 — Age or gender has been no bar for Savita Jain to succeed. At the age of 26, she has already made her mark in training people in fashion and knitwear designing. From a modest beginning about four years ago, her institute has come to be recognised as one of the few best.

Savita started the JD Institute of Fashion Design franchise in 1996 at the young age of 22. She had just come out of the institute in Jaipur. Seeing her promising talent, the president of the JD Institute of Fashion Design, Mr Chanderkant Dalal, offered her the franchise for Ludhiana. Mr Dalal was eyeing Ludhiana for starting an institute as the city had a great potential.

Born, brought up and educated in Ludhiana, Savita represents the class of new-age woman for whom "the will is the way" for success. She gives the credit for her success to her parents, in-laws and the husband. It is his father, Mr J.C. Rai, who encouraged the youngest of his three daughters to choose fashion designing as her career. Although Mr Rai was keen that his daughter, given her talent and potential, should opt for the civil services, yet he agreed to her daughter's interests. So much so, he provided all the earnings of life, he had got at the time of retirement for Savita to start the institute.

Savita worked with innovative ideas. She did not want her institute to be run of the mill and tried all ideas for making a difference. In not many institutes they run the course for knitwear designing. Realising the scope of knit designing in Ludhiana, obviously for the massive knitwear and hosiery industry, she started a course in knitwear designing.

Her family is in the knitwear business. Her students do not face any difficulty in getting placement for practical training. Moreover, she had already signed separate memoranda of understanding with the Knitwear Club, Ludhiana, and the Apparel Promotion and Export Council, Ludhiana, for training of students. In fact, it has been a great demand of the hosiery and knitwear manufacturers in Ludhiana that a good institute should come up here as there is a dearth of trained manpower. And Savita came with instant assistance.

Savita does not want to stop here. She believes that it is just a beginning for her and has a long way to go. In January she plans to start Aaina, a design studio, which would be the first of its kind in Ludhiana.

Although Savita's has been a smooth sailing all through her brief career, but she believes that the cooperation of family for the success of a woman is essential. And she acknowledges it with a sense of achievement. "It is not me alone, there are so many others who have been coming up well. Moreover, Ludhiana is changing and society has also changed its orthodox and conservative attitude towards women". She says so many girls from respectable families can be seen working in various jewellery shops, departmental stores, computer institutes and public relations, which is a healthy indicator.Back


Murder bid: in-laws booked
Tribune News Service

LUDHIANA, Oct 18 — A woman has accused her husband and in-laws of attempting to kill her and harass her for bringing insufficient dowry. The police has booked the in-laws of the victim and her husband under Sections 307, 406, 498-A, 506 and 120-B of the IPC.

It is alleged that the victim was married to Jasjit Singh Nayyar in 1993 and that she was continuously harassed by her in-laws for bringing insufficient dowry. She has alleged that on October 12, her husband, father-in-law, Bhupinder Singh, mother-in-law, Surinder Kaur and two brothers-in-law, Minto and Rajinder, tried to strangulate her.

She has alleged that the motive behind this attack was that she had refused to concede to their demand of getting Rs 5 lakh as dowry from her family.

Liquor seized:
Inspector Paramjit Singh has arrested Jagtar Singh Tari and seized illicit liquor from him.

In another incident, the Jodhewal police has arrested Jagtar Singh and seized eight bottles of liquor from him.

In both the cases, the police has booked the complainants under Sections 61, 1 and 14 of the Excise Act.

Iron stolen:
Iron worth Rs 1,75,000 is alleged to have been stolen from a factory by an employee, Ramesh, and Dharminder Kumar by breaking open the lock of the factory on the night of October 10. It is alleged by the factory owner, Mr Bhushan Kumar, that the accused have stolen 17 to 18 iron plates weighing between 125 and 175 kg each and six plates weighing 900 kg each.



Police claims solving 6 murder cases
From Our Correspondent

SAMRALA, Oct 18 — The Khanna police traced six murders with the arrest of Sher Singh, son of Mahan Singh of Sherpur Mand. Two co-accused are absconding, according to Mr Rajindra Dhoke, Khanna police district chief, here today.

Talking to reporters in local Rest House, Mr Dhoke said that the police had traced many cases of murder, dacoity and robbery from 1990 to 2000. Sher Singh had confessed that in 1988, Man Singh of Bhoinpur and Major Singh of Takhran came to him and asked to joint the Kirti Kisan Union. The main object of the union was to wage a to war against captialists and landlords.

Sher Singh further admitted that in 1988 and 1989 when the Khalistan movement was at its peak, the memo

bers of the Kirti Kisan Union established an armed organisation to counter the Khalistan terrorists. This organisation was named after Kartar Singh Sarabha.


Forum against proposed sales tax
Tribune News Service

LUDHIANA, Oct 18 —The Industry and Trade Forum of Punjab has condemned the move of the state government to enforce sales tax at the first stage on the sale of rawmaterial, iron and steel, and to impose an electricity cess of 5 paise per unit on consumers.

According to forum members, the government is following anti-industry, anti-trade and anti-farmer policies. A press note of the forum said that due to wrong policies and impetus to imports at the behest of the IMF, the World Bank and the WTO, as many as 9 lakh small-scale units in the country had closed down or turned sick. In Punjab alone, 8000 units have been closed down.

Mr Harish Khana of the association said on the one hand, Mr Kanwaljit Singh, State Finance Minister, had announced the implementation of VAT(Value Added Tax) policy from April 1, 2001 in Punjab but on the other hand, the Financial Commissioner (Taxation) was adopting dual taxation policy by implementing sales tax on raw materials at first stage. Once this policy decision was implemented, it would raise the prices of iron and steel by Rs 600 to 1000 per mt.

It may be recalled that few years ago the union government had withdrawn freight equalisation policy, with the result that industry and trade of the border state of Punjab had got a major setback since the element of freight on iron and steel had then increased by Rs 1000 to 1200 per mt at that time since it was situated far away from the source of raw materials and the ports. With this increase, a number of steel mills and foundries in Batala, Mandi Gobindgarh and Ludhiana were closed.

He pointed out that last year alone industry and trade of the state had contributed 35 per cent more revenue in the form of taxes to the state government as against the target of 16 per cent fixed by the government. Despite this it continued to be on the spree to impose more and more new taxes and was creating hurdles in the smooth running of the industry in the state. The PSEB had also increased its rates this year and added additional burden of Rs 300 crore per annum on the consumers. It had also made considerable increase in the minimum monthly service charges.


‘Online transactions to come under legal framework’
From Deepkamal Kaur

LUDHIANA, Oct 18 — With the coming up of a safe script certification centre at Chennai, online transactions will come under legal framework and e-commerce will gain momentum, Mr David Appaswamy, General Manager, Corporate Communications, Satyam Infoway Limited, said while talking to Ludhiana Tribune here today.

Mr Appaswamy told that the centre would be opened up in a few months’ time in a joint venture with Verisign, a US-based company, and the construction had already begun. The centre would give legal authentication to all those who wanted to transact online and, thus, ensure that no one misused anybody else’s account for buying things online. The centre would give a boost to e-commerce activities as reliability of the users was bound to be increased.

While giving details of the Internet services being rendered by Satyam, he said that by the end of September, there were more than 3,20,000 Internet connections provided by the company in 220 cities from 46 centres in India. He said that the company would soon have 17 own international gateways, of which the company had already obtained one. ‘‘This will not only increase the bandwidth and increase the speed but also break the monopoly of the VSNL as earlier the VSNL was the only gateway and all the Internet traffic was routed through it,’’ said Mr Appaswamy.

‘‘Satyam now also has its own 6,000 servers in Mumbai where not only the sites designed and maintained by the Indians but also those of the USA are being hosted. Indigenous hosting will also make the opening of the websites faster here, ’’ he said.

Telling about the company’s another venture, Mr Appaswamy said: ‘‘The faculty of Satyam is also teaching online journalism at Asian media at Chennai. Page making on the net is entirely different and content has to be made more interactive.’’

Talking about the scope of the Internet in India, Mr Appaswamy said: ‘‘Several Indians are already making waves in the field of information technology in the USA, however, the government has failed to realise the potential of the IT in India.’’

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 |