Tuesday, May 29, 2001, Chandigarh, India


L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S



Aakshi Sareen tops in Class X CBSE examination
All-time best show by city students
Deepkamal Kaur

Ludhiana, May 28
City students have done it again in the matriculation examination conducted by the Central Board of Secondary Education. Improving upon the performance of 93.4 per cent marks of last year, the city topper this time has aggregated 94.4 per cent marks.

More than 20 city students have scored above 90 per cent marks this time, beating all previous records.

Aakshi Sareen of Sacred Heart Senior Secondary School (SHSSS), BRS Nagar, has topped the list of successful candidates in the city, scoring 94.4 per cent marks. Aakshi was overjoyed after she confirmed her position. “I saw my result on the Internet at 12:15 p.m. and I was amazed. My parents too were overjoyed. Later we called up at different schools to know about my rank in the city and I was thrilled to know that I had topped among the city schools.’’

Aakshi has opted for non-medical subjects and wants to graduate from an IIT.

Ivneet of DAV Public School has scored the second position in the city by scoring 93.2 per cent marks. Mayank Kukreja of BCM Arya Model School, Shastri Nagar, and Brijesh Takkar of Sacred Heart Convent Senior Secondary School (SHCS), Sarabha Nagar, have together secured the third position in the city with 93 per cent marks. Mayank says that he has been able to secure good marks through self-study. Inspired by his brother, Ankit Kukreja, Mayank wants to become a computer engineer.

A confident boy, Brijesh wants to become a paediatrician, like his parents. Hard work, support of his parents and two sisters led him to success, he believes.

Varsha Jain of Sacred Heart Convent Senior Secondary School, Sarabha Nagar, and Manish Aggarwal from Kundan Vidya Mandir, both scored 92.8 per cent marks. Like his father and brother, Manish wants to become a lawyer. He owes his success to regular studies, support of his teachers and parents.

Manish is thankful to God, for just a month before his examination he had met with an accident and had injured his right hand. Doctors had advised him to stop working with his right hand for three months, but he was lucky to be fit just two days before his examination.

Aprajita from SHCS has scored 92.6 per cent marks. With 98 per cent marks in science and 96 per cent in mathematics, she has taken up non-medical at a school in Delhi. Jasmine Arora from SHSSS has scored 92 per cent marks. She wants to become a doctor like her parents. She believes in self-study and for Class X exams, she studied regularly for five to six hours.

Priyanka and Megha Khanna from the SHCS have come out with 91.6 and 91 per cent marks, respectively. Japnit Chawla from the same school has scored 90.6 per cent marks. She wants to become an IAS officer after she does engineering. Sharing the same rank are Sheenam Sharma from Tagore Public School, Tarun Gupta, Heena Goel and Shalika Gupta, all three from DAV Public School. Sheenam Sharma, daughter of a bank officer, wants to become a doctor. She owes her success to hard work, support of her parents, teachers and the Principal.

Sharvani Sharma from DAV Public School has scored 90.4 per cent marks and Gautam Mehta from the SHCS has come out with 90.2 per cent. Sharvani has taken non-medical and says that it was dedication, determination and hard work which led her to success. Gautam has taken non-medical and wants to become an astronaut. Perfect planning for study leads to success, he believes.

Sahil Goel from the SHCS and Achin Maheshwari from BCM Arya Senior Secondary School, Shastri Nagar, have got 90 per cent marks.


Appointment of Dean, Director cleared
Matter of Pro-VC’s post not taken up
Kanchan Vasdev
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 28
The Board of Management of Punjab Agricultural University (PAU) which met at Chandigarh today, cleared the names of two professors for the coveted posts at the PAU. The board has approved the names of Dr G.S. Nanda and Dr M.S. Tiwana for the posts of the Director, Research and Dean, College of Agriculture, respectively.

Dr Tiwana will take over the charge of Dean, COA, from June 1 after the office of the Dean will be vacated by Dr Ranjit Singh, Dean, COA, who is retiring on May 31. While Dr Nanda will join office from September 1 and will follow Dr M.S Bajwa, present Director, Research, who will retire on superannuation on August 31.

Their names were forwarded by a four-member selection committee of the PAU to the Board of Management for appointment as Director, Research and Dean, College of Agriculture of Punjab Agricultural University. As many as 9 professors had appeared for interview for the two posts which were held at the PAU on May 20. It was almost final that the two would be selected for the two prize postings at the PAU but the approval of Board of Management was required.

The issue of the appointment of Pro-Vice Chancellor, PAU, was not discussed at the meeting of Board of Management of the university throwing cold water on the aspirations of many who were lobbying for the post of the Pro-VC.

Although the matter of the appointment was not on the agenda of the board it was being said that the issue would be raised suddenly in the meeting. According to some PAU sources, the matter was not raised in the meeting while many issues were being discussed. Speculations were rife in the university that the PAU would soon have a new Pro-VC as the Vice Chancellor was being politically pressurised. The authorities had, though denied, till the last minute that the post would not be filled.

The post of Pro-VC has been lying vacant since April 1 after Dr K.S. Aulakh had taken over as the new VC of the PAU. The authorities at that time had decided not to fill the post as the appointment of Pro-VC was challenged by the two professors of the university.

The Punjab and Haryana High Court had disposed of the petition against the appointment of Dr K.S. Aulakh as the Pro-Vice Chancellor, Punjab Agricultural University only last week and the PAU was buzzing with speculations that the post might be filled shortly.

University source had disclosed that political pressure was being mounted on the Vice-Chancellor for filling up the post. Two prominent personalities of the university were said to be lobbying for the post. Reportedly the person having the backing of the Chief Minister would be the next Pro-VC.


PAU to have MBA in IT
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 28
The Punjab Agricultural University (PAU) has decided to include Information Technology (IT) as a specialisation in the Masters of Business Management course offered by it. The students joining the MBA department from the new semester would also be offered this specialisation, among others.

University sources disclosed that the PAU had decided to include IT as a specialisation in view of the ever increasing demand of IT professionals in the corporate as well as industrial sectors. The department is also planning to coordinate with big names in I T industry. The experts from these companies would educate the students as well as teachers of the department in this stream.

Till now MBA students were being offered specialisation in marketing, finance, agricultural business and human resource management by the department.

Sources said that the IT was included in MBA because of late the industrial houses were looking for management professionals having an expertise in the information technology and the students having done such specialisation would find more job avenues.

They also said that the MBA degree had not lost its sheen but the students having a specialisation were more in demand.

The sources said the corporate houses were preferring candidates having IT degrees. The PAU was also making efforts to increase the demand as well as number of placements of its pass-outs in the job market.

With the new course the students would be prepared to fight the competition in the market. According to the sources out of 20 students taking admission in the MBA degree course all those willing to specialise in IT would be given a chance.

Teachers of the department said the discussion with IT experts of the various companies was in the final stages and many of them had agreed to help the students as well as teachers of the department. They said that many teachers in the department were already computer experts as well as experts in Information Technology and they only required to update their knowledge.

The teachers said that most of the students taking admission in the MBA course were also well versed with the computers.

They said that many of them were taking up computer courses privately along with their degree. These students if chose IT specialisation would benefit all the more.



King Bruce of rallying
Kamal Kishore Shankar

Ludhiana, May 28
Reaching targets at top speed is the way Harpreet Singh lives. The winner of this year’s SJOBA (Saint John’s Old Boys Association) Thunderbolt Motor Cycle Rally at Chail in Himachal Pradesh, Harpreet, stretches his speed to the limit.

Right from his childhood, he wanted to do something exciting and beat others with his courage and speed. As a 12-year-old, he used to ride the scooter of his father, even though his feet could not reach the ground when he was on it. His father told him not to touch the scooter because he could not control its speed. Harpreet decided to prove him wrong.

Harpreet bought his first motor cycle in 1994 when he was an undergraduate in Punjab Agricultural University here. By his graduation day in 1995, he had decided what to do in life — become a rallyist. Though he even joined a postgraduate course after this, he could not finish it due to a lack of interest.

Harpreet participated in SJOBA rally for the first time in 1995, but did not do well because of a lack of technical knowledge. He met with an accident in his first attempt to win the rally, but continued to take risks. In the 1996 rally, he nearly lost his life in an accident. His motor cycle was destroyed, but he escaped with minor injuries.

After this incident, he realised the risks and even picked up a job. However, he soon returned to his first love. In 1999, he tried his luck again in SJOBA rally, but victory eluded him.

The next year brought him some luck and he was declared the ‘Best Novice Biker’ in the seven-day Himalayan Rally. It was here that he learnt his most valuable and difficult lessons. The achievement recharged him to return to SJOBA rally this year and take the winner’s cup.

Harpreet wants to shift to car rallying, but technical handicap and financial crunch are the main hurdles. He has prepared a Maruti Gypsy for the June 3 Auto Cross Rally that is to be held in Chandigarh. He says, “For participating in car rallies, you need good technical knowledge and teamwork, besides a professional approach.

He said, “There are many persons who want to sponsor me, but I want technical guidance and equipment. I still want to beat others with my speed.”


NRI investments being streamlined
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 28
To ensure the maximum involvement of NRIs in the development of their native villages, the NRIs’ investment system would be streamlined and channelised by the NRI Sabha, Punjab. A comprehensive directory containing information about each and every NRI from Punjab, including his postal address, phone number and e-mail address, would also be prepared so that while taking up the integrated development of a particular village, all the NRIs belonging to that village could be contacted and persuaded to invest in the projects influencing the maximum population.

This was announced by Mrs Geetika Kalha, Commissioner, Jalandhar Division, and Chairperson, NRI Sabha, Punjab, while addressing the third annual conference of the sabha at Guru Nanak Bhavan here yesterday.

Mrs Kalha also announced that keeping in view the deep emotional attachment of the NRIs with their motherland, the NRI Sabha would also develop a heritage village where all the items relating to the vanishing rich cultural heritage of Punjab would be preserved so that the coming generations of NRIs on their visit to India could be apprised of their cultural heritage at a single place. She said that the cultural and sports trips of the children of NRIs would be conducted in Punjab to provide them on opportunity to mix up with the local youth.

The Commissioner while commenting upon the major achievements of the sabha including the amendments to laws relating to the eviction of agriculture land and urban properties of NRIs during the recent past, informed that the sabha had also pursued the cases to get the amendments in FEMA and the Adoption Act from the Centre as per the suitability of NRIs so that legal complications could be sorted out.

Addressing the conference, Mr S.K. Sandhu, Deputy Commissioner, said that to ensure the efficient functioning of the Ludhiana unit of the NRI Sabha, a suitable place for setting up an office would be provided at the earliest. He said that the number of the members of the district unit had been enhanced to 250 and the office-bearer of the units had achieved major success in getting solved most of the complicated cases relating to properties and other matters of NRIs with the cooperation of the administration.

Giani Resham Singh, President, NRI Sabha, Punjab, while addressing the conference highlighted various achievements of the sabha in finding the permanent solution to the major problems of NRIs.

Mr Pritam Singh Deol, President, Ludhiana unit of the sabha, said that out of 55 cases of serious nature taken up in the district last year, 40 had been solved and 12 were likely to be solved at the earliest as per the new amendment to the Urban Rent Act.

Among others who addressed the function were Mr Apinder Singh Grewal, Mayor, Municipal Corporation, and a former President, Ludhiana unit of the NRI Sabha, and Mr J.S. Puar, Vice-President of the NRI Sabha and former VC, Punjabi University.



Daresi Maidan — going down the memory lane
K. S. Chawla

DARESI Maidan in Ludhiana is not an ordinary ground. It is a chronicler of pitched political battles fought before and after the Partition. Daresi Maidan, now popularly known as Ramlila Grounds, is witness to great social and political upheavals in the state of Punjab.

Two forts on banks of Sutlej river are historic monuments which at one time divided the British Raj and the Sikh Raj of Maharaja Ranjit Singh. The Ludhiana fort was the garrison of Maharaja Ranjit Singh. The Ludhiana fort was the garrison of the British Army, as Ludhiana was the last post of the British Raj, while the fort at the Punjab Police Academy at Phillaur was the garrison of Sikh soldiers. It was after the death of Maharaja Ranjit Singh when the Britishers annexed Punjab that the boundaries were removed.

Major political battles for the freedom of the country were also organised from Daresi Maidan and after Independence major political battles by various political parties were held at this very place.

Pandit Jawahar Lal, the first Prime Minister of India, visited Ludhiana in early 50s to address a public rally. It was organised in Daresi Maidan and a sea of humanity gathered to see its beloved leader. The public address system was not perfect and Pandit Nehru got annoyed. Dr Kali Charan Sharma, a veteran freedom fighter who was on the dais with Pandit ji, tried to pacify the crowd but Nehru, who was known for his short temper, pushed him aside and also reportedly slapped Dr Kali Charan Sharma, uttering ‘peechhe hato’ and started his speech. This reporter who was a kid then had gone to see Pandit ji with his eldest brother. Pandit Nehru’s visit was followed by Jansangh president Dr Shyama Prashad Mukerjee who also attracted a good crowd and he was accompanied by Dr Bhai Mahabir, then general secretary of the Jan Sangh.

Daresi Maidan was the scene of activity of Dr Kali Charan Sharma who was then known as Maha Punjab Front leader and launched anti-Punjabi suba movement against Master Tara Singh at the behest of Partap Singh Kairon, then Chief Minister of Punjab. Kairon was against the formation of Punjabi Suba and he exhorted Dr Kali Charan to launch anti-Punjabi suba movement. Dr Kali Charan also observed a fast unto death. He used to draw good crowd but at the same time, Gurdwara Kalgidhar used to be the hub of activities of the promoters of Punjabi suba agitation. All jathas would leave from Gurdwara Kalgidhar and would offer arrest for the Punjabi Suba.

Dr Kali Charan was later gunned down by militants during days of terrorism in Punjab.

The RSS chief and founder Guru Golwaker also addressed gatherings of the Rashtriya Swayam Sewak Sangh workers in the Daresi Maidan. During these days, press was not allowed to cover the visit of the RSS chief. I remember during his one visit, the press covered his function by sitting along the loudspeakers fitted in Daresi Maidan. Daresi Maidan was also witness to the agitation launched by the leaders of the opposition parties against the rule of Partap Singh Kairon. Rallies held during those days in the Daresi Maidan used to attract good crowds and the prominent leaders who were in the forefront of fighting against Kairon included Master Tara Singh, Devi Lal, Durga Das Khanna then Chairman, Punjab Legislative Council, Virender of Daily Pratap Maulvi Abdul Ghani Dar, and Gurdial Singh Dhillon.

In an interesting development, Acharya J.B. Kirpilani, a veteran Congress leader and freedom fighter, addressed the rally against Kairon while his wife Suchita Kirpalini addressed the rally in favour of Kairon.

During the Chinese aggression, Partap Singh Kairon and General Mohan Singh of the INA organised anti-Chinese rallies in Daresi Maidan to boost the morale of Punjabis.

Daresi Maidan remained the battle ground till eighties when all political parties made use of this spacious ground. Indira Gandhi, A.B. Vajpayee, L.K. Advani, Murli Manohar Joshi were among those who addressed rallies in this ground. An attempt was also made on the life of Mr Vajpayee during the militancy days, as a bomb exploded minutes after he left Daresi Maidan after addressing a public rally at night time. He was president of the BJP at that time. Two persons were killed in the blast that night. Besides, Loknayak Jayaparkash Narain and veteran film actor and socialist Balraj Sahni also addressed rallies in the maidan.

Lifting of the Emergency and announcement for the Lok Sabha poll by Indira Gandhi brought glory to the Daresi Maidan as many big rallies of the then political leader, including Babu Jagjivan Ram and Jansangh leaders, were held here.

Besides being the battlefield for political parties, Daresi Maidan also served as venue for holding of big religious and spiritual gatherings. Acharya Rajneesh of Osho and Mahesh Yogi and acharyaas of maths have organised their samelans in this ground. The first sardharam samelan was organised in this ground by Swami Bhaskaranand who later built Ved Mandir in Daresi Maidan. This mandir is another unique monument in Ludhiana now and it has a literary which has rare religious books. Even these days, Daresi Maidan is being used by religious and spiritual organisations.

Many religious processions including Ram Navmi procession, Shivaratri procession, Balmik procession and Dr Ambedkar procession, originate from Daresi Maidan.

As Ludhiana has witnessed an unprecedented and phenomenal expansion, areas around Daresi Maidan have become very congested. Some slums have also developed around the fort. The hosiery business is concentrated around Daresi Maidan. Daresi Maidan itself has become narrow, as a hospital, known as Shri Bhagwan Ram Charitbale Hospital has been built by the Ram Lila Committee which is now looking after Daresi Maidan. The Ram Lila Committee, Ludhiana, has been organising Dussehra festival every year and at one time Dussehra festival used to attract a crowd of nearly 2 lakh on the last day of the festival. But now Dussehra is celebrated in different localities of the town. Still the celebrations organised by the Ram Lila Committee at Daresi Ground have their own importance. For one week, they organise different “jhankis” depicting the happenings in the life of Lord Rama and Sita.

The Ram Lila Committee has constructed a Sita Mandir with a big hall where social functions are held. Besides there are two small marriage palaces. The president of the Ram Lila Committee, Mr Prem Prashar, and Mr Kewal Marwaha, chairman, are the spirit behind the present activities of the Ram Lila Committee. They have been in control of the things at the committee since 1988. Without the mention of Devi Lal, veteran trade union leader, the historic Daresi Maidan would remain incomplete. He was a legendry figure of this area.

The Ramlila Committee is now constructing an eight-bed ICU at the Shri Ram Bhagwan Charitbale Hospital, which will have 120 beds and ten specialists. The daily out-patient turnout at the hospital is around 400. The hospital claims to provide cheap medical treatment compared to other hospitals in the city. The hospitals run on donations from the citizens.

Daresi Maidan also witnessed the ghastly incident of militancy when militants gunned down nine persons on March 12, 1986, including some RSS workers, who were attending a “shakha”. This was the first major incident of killing by militants in Ludhiana after the assassination of Lala Jagat Narain, Editor, Hind Samachar, on September 9, 1981, near Ladowal village on Ludhiana-Jalandhar highway.

The surroundings of Daresi Maidan now a days present a dirty look. During a visit to the area on Saturday I found garbage dumped in a corner of the maidan and the municipal corporation machines and road roller parked under the public platform meant for VIPs. The area needs to be cleaned.

There is a great difference in the attitude of leaders of the present day and old-generation leaders. Old leaders were dedicated, sincere and truthful whereas the present-day leaders are no match to them.

I still recollect when people would worship leaders like Master Tara Singh and women in particular would come on dais to bow before him in a public meeting at town hall open air theatre. They would even offer money to him.

Similarly, the Arya Samaj leaders in particular, who had their training from Gurukul, drew great respect from the people. They were involved in the Hindi Raksha samiti and anti-cow slaughter movement and their headquarters in Ludhiana are Dal Bazar Mandir. Ilaichigar mandir in Chaura Bazar was the hub of agitation from where the Jansangh would daily launch satyagraha after the announcement of the formation of the Punjabi suba after the Indo-Pak war of 1965. The satyagraha was led by Prof Vishwanathan, Jan sangh leader. Six workers were killed in the police firing which resulted during the anti-Punjabi suba agitation. The present girjaghar used to be the centre of agitation. 



Row over water supply turns ugly
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, May 28
The tension between councillors of Wards 66 and 67 here on the issue of the water-supply distribution took an ugly turn today. The Congress councillor of Ward 66, Mr Sat Pal Puri, along with a large number of residents of Santokh Nagar and its nearby localities, held demonstrations at the Municipal Corporation headquarters and in front of the office of the MC Commissioner, Dr S.S. Sandhu.

Mr Puri and Ms Neelam Pathak, councillor of Ward 67, are fighting over the distribution of water supply to the wards. The tubewell that supplies water to these areas had developed a snag on Friday, following which, these councillors had had a verbal duel over the restoration of water supply. Mr Puri had alleged that the husband of Ms Pathak had manhandled him.

Residents of the two wards, who had accompanied Mr Puri to the MC headquarters, said there were irregularities in the various development works here. Some of them said Ms Pathak and her sons had often misbehaved with them. They also alleged that the construction material being used for paving streets in Ward 67 was substandard, but the MC was not doing anything about it. They demanded a probe into the allegations of the misuse of MC funds.

Mr Puri said the MC administration was discriminating against certain councillors in the allocation of funds. He said, in the past four years, no tubewell had been commissioned in his ward. He said many localities did not have streetlights, proper parks and good roads.

The protest ended after the MC Additional Commissioner, Mr S.K. Sharma, and the MC Joint Commissioner, Mr Harjinder Singh, assured them that the scarcity of water in the wards would end in the next four days.

The MC officials also agreed to hold an inquiry into the allegations of the use of substandard material in road-paving works.



Panel flays hike by PSEB in fuel surcharge
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 28
The Ludhiana Electroplaters Association has decried the hike in advance consumption deposits (ACD) by 33 per cent, high consumption surcharge and fuel surcharge unilaterally and arbitrarily imposed by the Punjab State Electricity Board (PSEB).

Mr Joginder Kumar and Mr Manmohan Singh Ubhi, president and secretary of the association, respectively, in a press release issued here today, pointed out that since the Power Regulatory Authority came into operation, all these issues should be taken by the PSEB with the authority. These issues were related to the tariff. Further the PSEB should set its own house in order first and check the transmission and line losses before passing on the loses to the consumers.

They said,‘‘ It appears that the Chairman of the Board, Mr G.S. Sohal, is bent upon dislocating the industrial units of Punjab by taking such measures. The electricity is not cheaper in Punjab and the Chairman has forgot that the state has locational disadvantages.’’

Mr Joginder Kumar urged upon the Chief Minister, Punjab, Mr Parkash Singh Badal, to direct the chairman of the PSEB to keep in abeyance the ACD, fuel and high consumption surcharge and refer them to the regulatory authority.



Dharna against Mayor continues
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, May 28
Indefinite dharna by the Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP) against City Mayor. Apinder Singh Grewal continued here today, with the party finding a surprise ally in a senior Shiromani Akali Dal (B) leader Amarjit Singh Bhatia.

Mr Bhatia, who joined the BJP protest this morning, opposed the elevated road project on the ground that first of all the civic body should provide basic amenities like clean drinking water and sewerage facilities to the city residents and then the MC funds should be diverted on other projects.

Open support by the SAD leader to the BJP protest comes in the wake of the two alliance partners taking a divergent stand on the issue of the elevated road project at the MC General House meeting with the SAD councillors siding with the Mayor in support of the project and the BJP opposing it tooth and nail.

Addressing the protesters, Mr Bhatia said the party would take up the matter with Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal for putting the priorities of the MC in the right perspective and to avoid wasteful expenditure. He further remarked that there was no justification of squandering the scarce resources in such a project when the MC was raising funds from financial institutions like HUDCO for sewerage and water supply.

Senior Deputy Mayor Jagdish Prasad Loomba and group leader of BJP councillors Pran Bhatia also spoke on the occasion.


We’ll give clean admn: Ramoowalia
Our Correspondent

Sahnewal, May 28
“We shall endeavour to create a new Punjab, providing an entirely novel and clean administration, if we come to power. For this, we have begun area-wise survey and campaigning in order to organise a collective force in favour of the Peoples Welfare Party.”

This was stated by Mr Balwant Singh Ramoowalia, president, Peoples Welfare Party, at Khanpur village, 4 km from Sahnewal. “In order to make rural people aware of the policies and agenda of the party we have initiated all-village survey and daily eight to 10 villages are being covered. We have already gone through 4000 villages and our aim is to cover the 7000 mark,” said the president.

Mr Avtar Singh Mullanpuri, vice-president of the party, declared that the party would contest elections for 90 seats for the Rajya Sabha elections, out of which eight candidates have been approved. Mr Ramoowalia announced the name of Mr Paramjit Singh Sidhwan for Ludhiana (urban). 



Ranike expelled for anti-party activities
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, May 28
The dissensions in the All-India Sikh Students Federation headed by Mr Tejinder Singh Sandhu deepened with the expulsion of Mr Kulwant Singh Ranike, senior vice-president, for indiscipline and anti-party activities, here today.

At a meeting presided over by Mr Sandhu at Circuit House here, the federation leadership, in consultation with other senior functionaries, decided to move against Mr Ranike for his failure to reply to the show-cause notice, served on him. Sounding a note of warning to the dissidents, Mr Sandhu made it clear that indiscipline will not be tolerated at any cost and strict notice will be taken of any act that in any way harmed the organisation.

Earlier, several functionaries of the AISSF had virtually revolted against party president Tejinder Singh Sandhu, for what they described a verbal attack against Mr Kulwant Singh Ranike and submitted their resignations.

At a meeting held at the residence of Mr Ranike, the AISSF activists had charged Mr Sandhu of autocratic way of working. “The federation chief remained on foreign trips almost for nine months in a year and therefore has no moral right of retaining his post,” remarked Mr Ranike. The meeting also urged the SAD leadership to initiate the process for bringing about complete unity among various factions of the AISSF.

Meanwhile, the All-India Sikh Students Federation (Bhoma) has charged the ruling SAD with pushing the real issues, concerning Punjab and Punjabis, to the back burner and promoting the kith and kin of the senior party leaders at the cost of the youth.



Rain brings respite from heat
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 28
The residents had a reprieve from scorching heat after the rain lashed the city last night. The rain accompanied with thunderstorm brought the mercury 10°C below normal.

The residents had a sigh of relief as the rain was needed due to the blistering heat that had been prevailing in the region for the past number of days. The mercury had crossed 43°C mark.

The rain was termed friendly for the farmers. According to Dr S.S. Hundal, Head, Department of Agrometerology, Punjab Agricultural University, crops standing in the field at this time required rain.

Dr Hundal said that the rain was helpful for farmers who were preparing their fields for paddy cultivation. He said that it was also good for those who had already started cultivating the paddy.


Fire in cinema hall
Our Correspondent

Khanna, May 28
There was a fire in Novelty Cinema here early today. Mr Abhinav Toki, son of the owner of the cinema hall, said the management had come to know about it at about 5 am. He said a short circuit had caused the fire.

Fire engines were called from Mandi Gobindgarh after the local fire-fighters failed to control the fire. The two squads doused the fire after half-an-hour of struggle. Mr Toki said the hall’ screen, sound system, ceiling and furniture had been damaged.



Consumer protection panel set up
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, May 28
The district unit of the Bhartiya Upbhokta Sanrakshan Samiti (Indian Consumers Protection Committee) was formally installed at a function in Model Town here, with Mr Surinder Singh and Mr Rajinder Singh, being nominated as the president and secretary general of the samiti, respectively.

Mr Hardyal Singh, presiding officer of the District Forum for redressal of consumer disputes, who was the chief guest on the occasion, expressed confidence that such bodies would make a positive contribution towards consumer awareness and settlement of disputes.



Woman thrown into canal
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, May 28
Ms Asha Rani, wife of Bara Singh of 1343/I, Phase II, Mohali, has alleged that Mrs Harinderjit Kaur, alias Rani, her brother, daughter along with her 15-day-old daughter had been thrown in a canal near here.

According to information reaching here, when members of the panchayat reached bridge canal Gorsian Makhan they found many people gathered there, who brought out the body of Harinderjit Kaur out of the canal. The ornaments she used to wear were missing and she bore injury marks.

The police was informed on whose advice the body was brought to Kiri Bhomal. The police remained there the entire night and got the post-mortem of the body conducted on the following day at Civil Hospital Jagraon after which the body was handed over for cremation.

The body of the baby has not been recovered. Harinder Kaur was married on November 14, 1999, to Sukhwinder Singh. The in-laws of Harinder allegedly harassed her for dowry.

Later on, it was reported that Sukhminder Singh, husband of Harinderjit Kaur, had also died. The Sidhwanbet police has registered a case under Sections 304-B, IPC, after it received order from the ADGP (crime).


Woman attacked by four persons
Our Correspondent

Khamano, May 28
Purshotam Singh, a resident of Banur (Patiala), and his four accomplices have been booked for attacking his wife, Dalwinder Kaur, at the residence of his in-laws in Todarpur village, near here.

According to information received here, Dalvinder Kaur, daughter of Mr Gurdev Singh (30), of Todarpur village, was married to Purshotam Singh eight month back. But after about 15 days of marriage, her in-laws started demanding more dowry and a case under Sections 498-A and 495, IPC, was registered at Banur police station on April 6, 2001, against her husband and mother-in-law Gurdeep Kaur. After that Dalvinder Kaur started living with her parents.

On May 24 when she was present at her house with her father and uncle, at about 6.30 pm a maruti car stopped in front of their house and Purshotam Singh, his uncle Bhagwant Singh of Jamreri (haryana), Jasvir Singh of Kanaw village and two unidentified persons came out of it. Purshotam Singh and Bhagwant Singh were armed with rifles.

Her husband ordered her to sign an affidavit but she refused. On her refusal, her husband threatened her and warned her of dire consequences. She also alleged that she was manhandled. When she and her family members raised hue and cry, the attackers fled.

The Khamano police has registered a case in this connection under sections 452, 323, 506,148 and 149, IPC. But the accused have absconded.


Suicide by Ram Nagar shopkeeper
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 28
A young shopkeeper committed suicide by consuming some poisonous substance at his shop in Ram Nagar here today. The police found a number of letters in his shop that suggested that he had ended his life to avoid further harassment by four persons, including a young woman.

The Basti Jodhewal police has registered a case of abetment to suicide against the four persons. The body has been sent for post-mortem examination, the report of which will be received tomorrow.

The police said, the suicide notes written by the shopkeeper, Taranjit Singh, included references to a young woman and three other persons, including a financier, who were allegedly harassing him. The letters also included the names of certain persons who had taken money from him for sending someone abroad.

The man had written that a financier had given a loan to a labourer who was unable to return it.

The note said, yesterday, the financier had threatened the man that he would kidnap his wife if he did not return the loan. The terrified labourer had run away and, now, the financier was threatening him.



Man duped of 3.5 lakh; travel agents booked
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 28
Two travel agents have been booked on the charge of duping a man of Rs 3.5 lakh. According to the police, Harbhajan Singh and Raju Singh had promised Kesar Singh of Munge village that they would help him settle abroad. But the duo neither fulfilled their promise nor refunded the money. The police has registered a case under section 420, IPC. No arrest has been made so far.

Dowry case: A case under sections 406, 498-A, 506 and 34, IPC, has been registered against seven persons, including four women, for demanding dowry. On the complaint of Pooja Khanna, her husband, mother-in-law, sisters-in-law and brothers-in-law have been booked for allegedly harassing the complainant to bring more dowry.

Shopkeeper looted: A case has been registered against Ashok Kumar, Mohinder Nagpal, Sonu, Rakesh Nagpal, Shiv Nagpal and 10 unidentified persons on the complaint of a shopkeeper, Parveen Grover of Tagore Nagar, who had alleged that he was attacked by them in the late hours on May 26. He had alleged that the accused having sharpedged weapons and iron rods injured him while he was sitting in his shop. The accused damaged various goods and took away Rs 30,000, a gold chain and a mobile phone. A case under sections 452, 427, 506, 323, 380, 148 and 149, IPC, has been registered against the accused.

Case registered: A dowry case under Sections 406, 498-A and 506, IPC, has been registered against three persons on the complaint of Sulekha, a resident of Hazoori Bagh Colony. According to her, the accused, including Davinder Kumar (husband), Parveen Rani (mother-in-law) and Dharam Singh (neighbour) had beaten her and demanded dowry. 


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