Sunday, February 11, 2001,
Chandigarh, India
L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


‘I was instigated by Tarun Kanta’
From Our Correspondent

DORAHA, Feb 10 — The taxi driver, who was nabbed by the Payal police from Nabha yesterday, apart from accepting that he had committed the murder, has hinted at a hand of the wife in the husband’s killing.

According to the FIR registered at the Payal police station on February 3, 2001, it was alleged by Tarun Kanta, the wife of Sanjay Puri, that her husband had been murdered and consequently thrown into the Sirhind Canal by Sukhdev Singh alias Bittu, whose taxi they had hired from Nabha from the time when her husband had returned from the USA last month. The complainant had also alleged that Sukhdev Singh, apart form looting them of their cash and jewellery, had also threatened to murder the wife if any problem was created by her. She also said that the taxi driver had unsuccessfully tried to force her to accompany her to Gujarat. As Tarun Kanta was also injured by the intoxicated taxi driver, she made an excuse of acute pain and expressed her inability to accompany him. Tarun said that she related the whole incident to the ward boy, while the driver absconded sensing trouble.

On the other hand, Sukhdev Singh alias Bittu, who has a TB-ridden wife, admitted of having ruthlessly murdered the NRI, Sanjay Puri. He told TNS: “Drugs are my weakness, and in a state of intoxication I committed the crime for money, but more than that, to possess the girl. We started from Delhi at 6 o’clock, and at Murthal, I got drunk. Near Panipat, my evil intentions having overpowered me, I hit the sleeping Sanjay Puri on the head, who became unconscious as a result. I took the dollars and the gold in my custody and then turned towards the girl. I raped her near Panipat. At Shahbad, I filled petrol from a petrol station into my car and then again raped the girl near Karnal. Then I made a plan to throw the body along with the car into the river and run with the girl to Bombay. I acted according to my plan.”

He added: “I did everything with the consent of the girl who instigated me to murder her husband and take liberties with her.” He said: “The girl had often admitted before him that she was tortured by her in-laws, harassed by her brother-in-law and also had trained relations with her handicapped husband. I did everything on her bidding, but it was in the end I found that she had deceived me when she began relating the whole story to the ward boy in the hospital in order to come out unscathed in the whole matter.”

Sanjay Puri, a resident of Phagwara, was a greencard holder and had come to India to take along his wife to the USA,. They were married.

It is worth mentioning that the accused stayed all these days in Bombay and it was only yesterday that he returned to his taxi-owner Pala Ram, who had been directed by the police to report his arrival immediately. It was then that the Payal police, under the command of Mr Ashish Kapoor, SHO, reached Nabha and arrested the taxi driver who was then brought to Payal police station and a case under Section 302 of the IPC was registered against him. He was presented before the court today and remanded in police custody till February 13.


Economic offences on the rise
By Jupinderjit Singh
Tribune News Service

LUDHIANA, Feb 10 — Though cases of robbery and murder are comparatively low in the city, economic offences seem to be on the rise. As many as 10 cases of different natures of fraud and forgery were registered by the district police in the last 24 hours only.

Better known as ‘white-collar crime’, the trend had lied low in the first month of this year whereas the last couple of years, had constantly witnessed a rise in such offences. The last 24 hours produced a sudden spurt in such cases as of the 22 cases registered , 10 belonged to this category.

If in one case it was the desire to see his children studying in a reputed school that left a man poor by Rs 50,000, in the other it was the lure of foreign land that duped three youths of more than Rs 2 lakh each. Even a bank was defrauded by some persons, who took a loan of Rs 2.25 lakh but bought a car at low price. Five cases were related to sale and purchase, and one was of forged selling of hosiery goods.

Dr Amanpreet Singh of the M/s Deol Hospital Mandi Mulanpur here has complained to the police that Varinder Singh, a resident of Gurdev Nagar, took Rs 50,000 from him for the admission of his two children to Sacred Heart Convent School. However, neither his children got admission nor the accused returned money to the complainant.

Three youths of Gill village gave about Rs 2 lakh to three persons, who posed as travel agents and promised to send them to Australia. After several visits the youths realised that the three persons vanished along with the money. A case of cheating and criminal breach of trust has been registered against the three alleged travel agents — Paramjit Singh Khalsa, Bachittar Singh and Jagtar Singh.

A resident of New Subash Chander Nagar, Rahon road, here purchased a plot from Hardial Singh, a resident of Rain village here only to realise later that the plot was already sold to one Manju Bala. The exasperated man had no option but to complain to the police which booked the accused under section 420 of the IPC. The complainant, however, had to virtually run from the proverbial pillar to post for getting his complaint registered. He succeeded only when he approached the District Magistrate in a Sangat Darshan on whose direction the case was finally registered.

Besides, an institution has also been defrauded. The State Bank of India was duped of about Rs 2 lakh by two persons, Harish Kumar Garg and Jaswinder Singh Bhatia, who allegedly took a loan of Rs 2.25 lakh from the bank but purchased a car at a much lesser price.

A resident of Mullanpur Dakha sold the car of a resident of Hambran but did not returned the money to him. In another case at least as many as 11 persons were booked in a case of cheating and criminal conspiracy for selling hosiery goods in a forged manner. All the other cases were of illegal sale of property.Back


Two new residential schemes for city
From Our Correspondent

LUDHIANA, Feb 10 — Ludhiana Improvement Trust (LIT) will undertake the development of two new residential schemes of 10.75 acre and 8.8 acre on Pakhowal Road in the city to cope with the ever-increasing demand in the mega city. The schemes have already been notified by the State Government and the preliminary work will commence in the near future.

In an exclusive interview with Ludhiana Tribune, the LIT Chairman, Mr Madan Mohan Vyas, gave details of various ongoing development projects and future plans to develop more residential, commercial and community projects. Construction was in full swing for the prestigious project ‘LIT Vision - 2000’, a multi-storey commercial complex at Maharani Jhansi Road, which would have 3 banks, 34 offices, two restaurants, shopping blocks and eight residential flats, with all modern facilities, including five elevators.

The LIT had taken up the task of providing residential accommodation to the people in the city in a big way. 424 super deluxe, HIG and MIG flats at six sites in four posh localities like Bhai Randhir Singh Nagar, Raj Guru Nagar, Shaheed Bhagat Singh Nagar and Rishi Balmiki Nagar were under construction. Proposal for the construction of another 120 MIG and LIG flats in Rishi Balmiki Nagar was being processed. “A proposal to provide 500 plots of 40 square yards each in a 475 acre scheme (Shaheed Bhagat Singh Nagar) to the economically weaker sections of society was also being finalised.

Mr Vyas informed that LIT had introduced the scheme of ‘mass clearance camps’ (MCCs) where solutions for disputed problems, waiver of penalty and remission of penal interest were provided to allottees. A large number of long-pending cases were settled at the first ever camp, organised last month.The second camp has been fixed for February 18. He said the trust had formulated a uniform policy for a one-time solution to settle outstanding instalments, penal interest and penalty in Shaheed Bhagat Singh Nagar scheme, which remained under litigation for over 15 years.

He said the LIT was keen to cut down unnecessary expenditure and loss of time in prolonged litigations in compensation cases pertaining to different schemes of the trust. A move has been initiated to seek settlement through Lok Adalat and the District Sessions Judge has been approached for this purpose. For the first time ever, LIt has formulated a new format for executing sale deeds and transfers of multi-storeyed flats and apartments on the basis of guidelines issued by the state government.

The trust, according to its Chairman, was finding it difficult to locate encroachments, illegal possessions, unused land and sites, commercial properties, fake and fraudulent allotments. Clearance of unlawful possessions further posed a big problem at times. “We have decided to set up a special enforcement wing and the matter has been taken up with the government to provide additional staff and police personnel for the same.”


Tractor parts traders demand uniform ST
Tribune News Service

LUDHIANA, Feb 10 — The ‘pro-farmer’ Akali-BJP coalition government is working against the interests of the farmers and manufacturers of tractors and combine parts. While finance ministers of all the major states in a recent meeting on the uniform rates of sales tax had decided to implement the uniform rate of sales tax to the time of 4 per cent on tractor parts, combine parts and ball bearings and agriculture machine parts, the Punjab government however had failed to implement the decision, according to the Tractors Parts Dealers Association.

Mr Gurinder Pal Singh, president, Tractor Parts Dealers Association, Ludhiana, in an interview with TNS said, “Punjab government’s decision to charge 8 per cent sales tax at the first stage and 10 per cent surcharge on ST has hit hard the sale of tractors and other auto-parts in the state. In Delhi, the government is charging just 4 per cent sales tax on tractor parts.’’

It may be mentioned that there are more than 9 lakh tractors in the state. The sale of spare parts in the state runs in to crores per annum. There are thousands of small scale units in the state, manufacturing tractor and combine parts. A significant proportion of these machine parts is also imported from Delhi, Maharashtra and other states. There is 4 per cent CST on agriculture auto-parts imported from other states. Dealers say they are forced to buy these auto-parts from Delhi because of the difference in the sales tax. Some dealers even bring the material without proper billing, with the result that the state exchequer loses crores every year due to theft of tax.

Dealers say although the sales tax on tractors and other parts in the neighbouring state, Haryana, is 10 per cent, but only at the final stage. Consequently, some dealers do not make proper bills to save ST. Consumers also prefer to buy the material from Haryana to save money, and the government loses tax.

Interestingly, the sales tax on tractors is just 4 per cent. Dealers argue if the government could charge 4 per cent ST on new tractors, it should also charge the same rate of ST on their spare parts. Dealers delegations have met the department officials a number of times for the decrease in ST, but, Ms J.J. Kaur, Assistance Commissioner, was of the view that the spare parts of tractor and combine machines also came in the category of automobiles. But dealers insist the since these auto-parts came in the category of agriculture machinery, lowest tax should be imposed on them.

Meetings with Mr Y.P.S. Ratra, Finance Commissioner, and Mr Kanwaljeet Singh, Finance Commissioner in this regard have also borne any result. Both of them had assured them that the notification in this regard would be issued soon. Till date, the department had not issued any notification.

Mr Gurinder pal Singh has urged the Finance Minister to issue the notification immediately. He said, “Agriculture and small units were facing tough challenges from the WTO and the recession. Government should provide the relief in ST at the earliest. Moreover, the total ST collection would definitely increase, as this step would discourage the traders from tax saving through dubious means.”

Mr Kanwarjit Singh, president, Tractor and Auto Traders' Association, Kamala Nehru Market, Ludhiana disclosed that till May, 2000, the ST on tractor, combine and ball bearings was 2 per cent. At times tax collections were very high. He asked the government to impose the ST on the same stage in all states. 


Rs 65 lakh raised for quake relief
From Our Correspondent

LUDHIANA, Feb 10 — Contributions in cash and kind continued to pour in at the special relief counter for earthquake victims of Gujarat, set up by the district administration here. According to the Deputy Commissioner, Mr S.K. Sandhu, cash donations made by members of trade and industry, individuals and other social, religious, educational and cultural institutions in the district had already crossed Rs 65 lakh and the figure was expected to exceed Rs 1 crore during next couple of days.

Among contributions made during last two days were those from Durga Mata Mandir Trust (Rs 2.51 lakh), Adya Industries (Rs 1.09 lakh), Ludhiana Club (Rs 1.01 lakh), Wholesale Cloth Merchants Association (Rs 1 lakh), Rummi Players of Sutlej Club (Rs 50,000) and Vishal Cycles (Rs 11,000).

According to Mr Jagdish Chander, President, Transport Association, a draft for Rs 2 lakh was presented by the association to Mr Sat Pal Gosain, Deputy Speaker, Punjab Vidhan Sabha, for the relief and rehabilitation of earthquake victims.

The Tractor and Auto Parts Traders Association had donated Rs 2 lakh. The cheque was handed over by Mr Amarjit Singh, president of the association to Mr Chiranji Lal Garg, Minister for Science and Technology, in a function held here today.

The Congress legislator Mr Rakesh Pandey, flagged off a truck, carrying relief material, worth Rs 4 lakh for quake victims. The material comprised blankets, sweaters and non-perishable essential items like flour, rice, biscuits, sugar etc. Among others, Mr Rajan Kohli, Mr Sita Ram Shanker, general secretaries, District Congress Committee, Mr Vinod Bansal and Mr Sanjay Dhamija were present at the occasion. Mr Vidya Sagar Pappu, president, Shiv Mandir Committee, Mr Sat Pal Sagar, Mr Parveen Bakshi and Mr Charanjit Bassi accompanied the truck to Gujarat to ensure that the material was distributed to the needy.

A 15-member volunteer group of Mochpura Supreme Shawl Association, which had accompanied a truckload of 7,500 shawls, lohis and other essential items for the earthquake victims of Gujarat, was accorded a rousing reception on its return to the city. Mr Rattan Lal Garg, President of the association, accompanied by Mr Madan Lal Vohra, Mr Santokh Singh Khurana, Mr Dev Raj Chhabra, Mr Ram Parkash Takkar, Mr Ashok Bhatia and Mr Kamal Kwatra garlanded members of the group.Back


Good response to census
Tribune News Service

LUDHIANA, Feb 10 — There has been a positive public response to the census here. About 5,000 enumerators are well on their way to achieve the target of covering at least 20 households in a day.

The Deputy Commissioner, Mr S.K. Sandhu, said the awareness generated by the media had helped them receive the cooperation of the public. Mr Sandhu said enumerators were not facing any difficulty in dealing with the public.

There are 28 columns in the census form to be filled by members of each household. An enumerator is supposed to cover at least 300 households in 20 days and the process has to be completed by February 28. This will be followed by a revision round till March 5. However, the point of reference for the census will be March 1 at the stroke of midnight.

Enumerators, who have been trained for the job, have asked to ensure that all details were accurate. Though the people believe that enumerators will fill the forms themselves after enquiring from few persons of a locality, they can be seen visiting every house. Mr Kamlesh Kumar, a teacher and enumerator, said, “We understand the importance of our job and are trying to ensure that people provide us with correct details.”


Special IT camps being organised
Tribune News Service

LUDHIANA, Feb 10 — The Income Tax Department , Ludhiana, is organising special camps in different parts of the city to file Form 2C from February 2 to 20.

According to the information provided by the IT Department, the schedule of the camps being organised at different places is as under:

12-2-2001: Noorwala Road, Focal Point, Jamalpur, Industrial Area B, Arti Cinema Chowk, Daba Road, Mullanpur and Ladowal.

13-2-2001: Lakkar Bazar(Dalpat House), Dal Bazar and Shivpuri.

14-2-2001: New Sabzi Mandi, Industiral Area A, Urban Estate, Haibowal Kalan, Kochhar Market, Link Road Near Maharashtra Bank and Sahnewal.

15-2-2001: Chauri Sarak, Ttutian wala Mandir, Islam Ganj, Dholewal Chowk, Binderavan Road, Model Town and Haibowal Dairy Complex.

16-2-2001: Jawahar Nagar, Quality Chowk, Village Gill, Prem Nagar, Islam Ganj and Guru Arjan Dev Nagar.

17-2-2001: Janta Nagar, Pakhowal Road, Agar Nagar, BRS Nagar, Barewal Road and Purana Bazar.

19-2-2001: Civil Lines, Sarbha Nagar, Chander Nagar, Dugri, Salem Tabri, Bazar Sarafan, Sherpur Market and Hargobind Nagar.

20-2-2001: United Cycles Manufacturing Association Gill Road, Maharj Nagar, Shivaji Nagar and Moti Nagar.

The department sources said, in addition permanent camps’ have also been arranged at Clock Tower (Chaura Bazar), Samral Chowk, Bobby Complex, Rahon Road (OBC), Sunder Nagar and Madhopuri and Atam Park and New Cycle Market.


DMC comes to aid of martyr’s family
Tribune News Service

LUDHIANA, Feb 10 — The Dayanand Medical College and Hospital (DMC) management today provided cash assistance of Rs 50,000 to the family of Naik Harinder Singh of Bassian village, in Bet area near here, who was killed in action on March 11, 2000 in an encounter will militants in Asam. 31-year-old Harinder Singh of Artillery Regiment, is survived by his wife and a four-year-old daughter.

The relief was provided to the family in the form of Kisan Vikas Partra, which will doubled in six-and-a-half years. Besides, the DMC management provided three medical cards to the mother, wife and daughter of Harinder Singh for free medical treatment for life. The management would bear all the educational expenses of his daughter and would also provide a job to his wife, said secretary of the Managing Society Mr Prem Nath Gupta.

Naik Harinder Singh’s family has a rich military tradition. His father also served in the Army and his brother was also serving in the Army. Surprisingly, there has been no word of consolation from the state government for the family of Harinder Singh, although the army has provided all sorts of assistance.

Mr Gupta said, the purpose of adopting the families of the martyrs was to ensure that the people who lay down their life for the integrity of the country are not forgotten and their families are not left alone to suffer. The DMC management has adopted several families of such martyrs earlier also.

The Kisan Vikas Patra was presented to the family at a simple and solemn function organised in the village. It was attended by a few hundred villagers, including the sarpanch of the village. The DMC management was represented by Dr G.S. Wander, Chief Cardiac Surgeon, Hero Heart Centre and Dr Sandeep Puri the Medical Superintendent of the DMC, besides the administrator Col. T.S. Kanwar, who has been instrumental in getting the families of the martyrs adopted.


SAD (A) to boycott poll
From Our Correspondent

AMLOH, Feb 10 — Activists of the Shiromani Akali Dal (A) will not take part in the mid-term poll on February 19, at Majitha as contesting parties “Congress and SAD (Badal )” are both responsible for the Operation Blue Star and the election is not fair as the orders of Election Commission are disobeyed, distillation of country- made liquor is free for all,” said Mr Simranjit Singh Mann, President, and SAD(A) and member, Lok Sabha, at a meeting here today, which was organised in connection with the celebrations of the birth anniversary of Sant Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale on February 12, at Fatehgarh Sahib.

Mr Mann strongly opposed the decision to send Mr Sukhbir Singh Badal, son of the Chief Minister, Punjab, to the Rajya Sabha, on the seat vacated by Mr Barjinder Singh Hamdarad. He suggested that Mr Hamdarad should also stress upon Mr Parkash Singh Badal not to allot this seat to his son at the cost of Akali workers who had made sacrifices for the party, otherwise the people will gather the impression that the seat was vacated by Mr Hamdarad purposely for Mr Sukhbir Singh Badal. Moreover, the Rajya Sabha seat was proposed to be allotted to Mr Rajinder Singh Mehta, an activist of Sikh Students Federation, who had joined the SAD (Badal ) said Mr Mann.

Mr Mann expressed surprise on the reported support extended by a Panthic Committee member, Mr Wasan Singh Zaffarwal, based in Switzerland, to the Akali BJP candidate in the Majitha byelection inspite of the fact that no Sikh youth in jails had been released by the present Akali-BJP government.

On the future of Akali politics Mr Mann declared that six like minded parties had already formed a joint front for the coming elections in the state. The alliance has authorised him to meet the Pakistan High Commission in New Delhi to submit a memorandum on the killings of Sikhs in Kashmir and urge the High Commission to grant him a visa to Pakistan and facilitate his meeting with General Musharraf.


Octroi evasion detected
From Our Correspondent

LUDHIANA, Feb 10 — The octroi staff of the municipal corporation has unearthed large-scale evasion of octroi during a drive to check night service buses, plying between Delhi-Ludhiana. According to the MC joint commissioner, Mr Harjinder Singh, five buses were searched on the night of February 9 and a large quantity of electrical and electronic goods, hosiery and readymade garments, motor parts and fabrics, on which octroi was not paid, were seized from the buses.

A video tourist bus, carrying more than 50 packages of different items, were impounded by the octroi staff as the driver failed to produce any documents of the goods being transported in the bus.

Mr Tarlok Singh, octroi superintendent of the MC, informed that a sum of Rs 40,000 was recovered from the defaulting firms as due octroi and penalty. Nobody had turned up so far to claim the goods seized from the tourist bus.


One killed in mishap
From Our Correspondent

KHANNA, Feb 10 — One person was killed and another was injured in a road accident near Gurdwara Manji Sahib on the GT Road, 15 km from here, today.

Two youngsters were coming to Khanna from Ludhiana on a Hero Puch (PB-10-AP-9828) when their vehicle skidded and a Punjab Roadways bus (PB-12-C-9717) coming from Pathankot hit them. One person died on the spot and other was injured. The injured man was rushed to Sidhu Hospital at Doraha.Back



Woman commits suicide
Tribune News Service

LUDHIANA, Feb 10 — Family problems allegedly led a married woman to end her life by drinking acid. The deceased woman, Taranjit Kaur, married to a city resident eight years ago, consumed acid two days ago and died at PGI Chandigarh last night. Her post-mortem was conducted at the Civil Hospital here today. At the statement of her father, the Division No. 6 police has registered a case of abetting the suicide against her husband, mother-in-law and brother-in-law. The police said that the woman was not enjoying good relations with her in-laws for the last one year or so. She was feeling frustrated. The police said she was also allegedly beaten a few days ago by her in-laws.Back


House burgled
Tribune News Service

LUDHIANA, Feb 10 — A house near Octroi Post, Ferozepur road, was burgled today afternoon. The burglers decamped with gold ornaments, clothes and about Rs 5,000 worth of cash. 

According to an FIR registered at Sarabha Nagar police station, Mr Ravinder Pal Singh Sodhi and his wife had gone out for duty, and when they returned, they found their house burgled.


Drunkard beats wife
From Our Correspondent

JAGRAON, Feb 10 — Kuldip Singh of Rauwal village attacked his wife, Rajinder Kaur, under the influence of liquor and broke her arm. The wife complained to the police that her husband was a habitual drinker and such torture was a routine. 

This time, he beat her with a stick. The Sidhwan Bet police has registered a case against the husband under Section 325 of the IPC.

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