Saturday, September 15, 2001, Chandigarh, India


L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S



School Principal booked for fraud
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 14
A major fraud has been detected by the management of the Arya Girls Senior Secondary School involving the illegal transfer of land worth crores of rupees to some person. An FIR has been registered against three persons, including two women who are being accused of the fraud.

According to Mr O. P. Tandon, manager of the committee, an FIR has been registered against Mr Ashwani Kumar Sharma, the then president of Arya Girls Senior Secondary School, Ludhiana, Ms Rajesh Sharma, the then member of the managing committee of the school and Ms Kanta Suri, the Principal of the school, for illegally transferring school property measuring 1542 sq. yards worth crores of rupees and located in an area with high commercial value to benefit each other.

He disclosed that this plot was given to the school on lease by the Wakf Board for the purpose of using it for various activities in the school. He revealed that one of the office-bearers at that time, Mr Ashwani Sharma, transferred the right of tenancy illegally in favour of another office bearer Ms Rajesh Sharma, in connivance with Ms Kanta Suri, the Principal of the school. The deal was struck without the prior permission of the apex body, the Arya Pratinidhi Sabha, Punjab, Jalandhar.

Mr Tandon, disclosed that after assuming office as manager of the school, he conducted an inquiry and found that “not a single penny was deposited in the school account” which should have come from this deal. This, he pointed out, amounted to clear embezzlement. Hence it was decided that the matter should be handed over to the police and an FIR was registered under Sections 406, 409, 420 and 120-B of the IPC to establish the truth and bring the culprits to book. He said the accused had not only abused the trust put in them, but had also betrayed the innocent students of the school. 


Arya College Principal goes on leave
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, September 14
Following withdrawal of suspension orders by the Arya Pratinidhi Sabha late last evening, Mr V.K. Mehta, Principal, Arya College, proceeded on a month-long leave as the college reopened today after a week.

The students and teachers came to the college and resumed their classes. The Principal also joined the college before he went on leave due to illness. In his absence, Mr S.S. Verma, Head of the Physics Department, took over the charge as acting Principal.

Giving reasons for the withdrawal of suspension orders, Lala Lajpat Rai, MP and president of Arya College Managing Committee, said that three representatives of the Non-Government College Principals’ Association approached him yesterday and urged him to cancel the orders passed against the Principal. He said that the Principals, including Ms Harmit Kaur from Ramgarhia Girls’ College, Mr B.D. Budhiraja from Kamla Lohtia Sanatan Dharam College and Mr Kuldip Singh from GGN Khalsa College said that since Mr Mehta was left with just six months of service, the orders should be withdrawn.

Lala Lajpat Rai said that he talked to Dr K.K. Pasricha, working president, Arya Pratinidhi Sabha, who said that the orders be withdrawn and college be reopened in the interest of the students.

He, however, said the chargesheet against the Principal would not be withdrawn and the Principal would have to reply to it within the stipulated time. It may be mentioned that Mr Mehta was suspended by Dr Pasricha on September 3 for ‘‘disobeying lawful orders of the managing committee’’. On September 11, he was chargesheeted by Mr H.L. Sethi, secretary, Arya College Managing Committee, for several financial irregularities.



An evening of music and disappointment
Our Correspondent

 Mahima Chowdhry
Mahima Chowdhry makes a brief appearance at 
‘Yeh Shaam Mastani’ programme. 

Ludhiana, September 14
Brilliant, pyrotechnics, inky blue sky lightened by brilliant psychedelic lights, 30,000 watts of powerful mind blowing music, artificial smoke billowing out from the stage, all were the ideal backdrop for “Yeh Sham Mastani” organised by an international soap company at South City last evening. The music was loud , the crowd was all enthusiastic and eager to see Mahima Chowdhry, famous Bollywood star and other famous Punjabi singers. However the management’s indifferent attitude towards the security of the people created chaos. But in spite of the confusion, the public waited expectantly to see Mahima Chowdhry who has made waves in her latest movie’ Lajja’.

But things were under control once the performers arrived. Palash Hussein of Euphoria set the mood of the evening by his pulse beating music. He sang an inspiring number “sabse aage nikal jayen hum”. His presentation of “Dama dum mast kalandar” elicited a wild response from the public. The expectation of audience were heightened as the anchor announced the arrival of Mahima Chowdhry. Dressed in black, Mahima arrived on the stage and said in Punjabi that she was pleased to celebrate her birthday among ‘Punjabi ghabroos’ and she would always remember this birthday of hers. She recited a few couplets and disappeared back stage leaving a very disappointed audience. They wanted more of her as her name had drawn a large number of audience like magnet. The audience felt greatly let down as they had expected her to perform, but she vanished after spending only five minutes with her fans sitting in VIP enclosure.

Next to perform was Shan who came on the stage with little children dancing along with him. Dressed nattily Shan sang “Kuch aisa jahan hum aisa baneye." His soulful singing of “Chota sa sansar hamara” did not invoke enthusiastic response, but things changed when Mika came on the stage and sang in his own style much different from that of his brother Daler Mehndi, “Sawan me lag gai aag”. His performance elicited enthusiastic response from the audience. Couple of other songs sung by him were “Din nahion langhda, raat nahi langdi” and “Mainu ek brandi chadi”.

The people were eager to hear their favourite Harbhajan Mann. When he finally appeared on the stage there were cat calls and whistling. The first song from the repertoire of his songs was “Chum, chum chum kar di kothe te aa jana”.’He fulfilled the hopes of audience by singing his very popular Punjabi song “Galan goriyan te vich toye”, the song that tops the pop chart according to TRP ratings. The audience in their ecstasy climbed on the chairs and danced wildly, “Teri bhij gai kurti lal” sent the audience into frenzy.

To make the night memorable , the last singer to serenade the audience was Punjabi Munda, Sukhbir. the crowd freaked out when Sukhbir rendered “Punjabi munde paon bhangra”. The evening will remain memorable for some guests seated in VIP enclosure, valid card holder, who were forcibly removed from their seats to accommodate the families of police officials. In order to get their family members seats in VIP enclousre , the police resorted to lathi charge to clear the way. Some scribes were also hit by the police. The enraged audience threw empty mineral bottles on the stage in rage.

Yeh Sham Mastani thrilled the audience when they saw the amazing colourful fireworks specially arranged to celebrate Mahima’s birthday, but bitter too due to lack of proper management of crowd by the organisers and lathi charge by the police on hapless public. Some people were seen bleeding. Madhusudan, a great fan of Mahima, who had procured the invitation with great difficulty, said,”The public is always made a fool of. Mahima just came for the sake of appearance.

The crowd was beaten as if they were rogues and not music lovers who had come to such a far off place like South City. This is not the way the fans of singers and Bollywood stars should be treated. The behaviour of police was deplorable.”


‘Teach terrorist countries a lesson’
Kamal Kishore Shankar

Ludhiana, September 14
Local residents have condemned the attacks in the USA and want military action followed by financial sanctions on the terrorist countries if these do not agree to stop the killing of innocent persons in different part of the world. They want that the countries running terrorist camps and promoting terrorism worldwide should be identified and wiped out.

Opines Mr A.R. Sunda, a senior citizen, “It is tragic that some countries which support terrorism in the name of jehad have celebrated the killing of innocent persons. All peace-loving countries should unite and take strong action against the countries and leaders who promote such violence. If such a superpower does not take action against the culprits, it will leave a bad impact on other countries and everybody will lose faith in the USA.”

Says Mr Satish Soni, a shopkeeper, “This barbaric act of terrorism cannot be approved in the name of jehad. No religion favours killing of thousands of innocent people in the name of a holy war. Financial sanctions should be imposed on and military action taken against the countries running and supporting terrorist camps.”

Opines Mr Inderjit Hassanpuri, a writer and artist, “The countries supporting terrorism should be boycotted. The countries supporting this attack should be penalised. Joint action by all peace-loving countries is required. The terrorist camps in various countries should be attacked and destroyed.”

Says Captain Amarjit Singh (retd), an ex-serviceman, “Both humanity and democracy are in great danger. The recent attacks are a major setback for democratic countries. This is the right time to retaliate against the countries which kill innocent persons in the name of jehad. I favour attacks on terrorist training camps in various Islamic countries and imposing of financial sanctions on terrorist countries.”

States Mr Gurbax Singh, an Indian based in the UK, “This act of terrorists is shameful and violence is not the right means to achieve the desired goals. I favour imposition of financial sanctions on the countries promoting terrorism. Military action should also be undertaken against these extremist countries and leaders.”



Full godowns, lax distribution
Manoj Kumar
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 14
Even as foodgrains continue to rot in godowns of the Food Corporation of India (FCI) and other state government procurement agencies, thousands of families, especially the migrant labour, in the region are unable to get subsidised foodgrains under the PDS system. The affected families are passing through a difficult phase of life as they have lost jobs to recession and have come below poverty line (BPL). The ban on the issuance of new BPL cards has further aggravated the difficulties for them.

Sources in the Food and Civil Supplies Department and ration depots revealed that the BPL cards or the Yellow cards have rather been issued to those people whose income level is much higher than the prescribed limits. Genuine beneficiaries have been hard hit by this.

Capt Parveen Vij, District Food and Supplies Controller, said there were about 7 lakh card holders in the district, however, the subsidised foodgrains under the Antodyia Scheme was being provided to just 5910 families. This quota had been fixed by the Central Government. The government statistics estimate about 27 per cent of the state population below the poverty line. However, unofficial sources said there were more than 1 lakh BPL families in Ludhiana district alone.

Mr Vij said under the scheme, 25 Kg of wheat was supplied to those families at a rate of Rs 2 per kg per month. However, all BPL families have not been covered under the scheme. Only 2,100 families have been covered under the scheme in the city. The department is also running a scheme under the Targeted Public Distribution System (TPDS) for scheduled caste families. The wheat is supplied at a rate of Rs 4.27 per kg and rice at Rs 5.79 per kg to scheduled caste families under that scheme.

However, there are few migrant labour families among the beneficiaries. The biased attitude of the MC and the food department officials and the depot holders against them has resulted in the fact that almost no migrant family was getting subsidised foodgrains. Though officials declined to provide any data regarding the number of migrant labour beneficiaries, yet Mr Vij admitted that the department had failed to pick up the rice-quota under the scheme. He said,’’ Since there are no rice eaters in Punjab, we are unable to take our bi-monthly share of more than 2000 quintals of rice from the Central pool. In fact, the people are not ready to take wheat also. When asked about the reasons, for such a situation, he said, “labourers store wheat and do not buy from the depots despite lower rates.’’

Mr Baldev Singh, a trade unionist and a BPL beneficiary, said,’’ Though I belong to the SC category, yet I have never got any wheat or rice at subsidised rates. Migrant labourers are equally upset as they are not able to get ration cards. Arjun Paswan, a migrant labourer, said,” There are hundreds of labourers belonging to the SC community, who have not been given BPL cards. Officials demand Rs 500 even for a simple card and the BPL cards have been banned for the past two years.’’



Eight arrested on eve-teasing charge
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, September 14
The city police arrested eight persons on the charge of teasing and harassing girls and registered separate cases against them under Sections 294 and 509 of the IPC yesterday.

The arrests were executed as part of the drive to curb public nuisances, including eve-teasing. The persons arrested were Rohit Kumar, alias Ravi, a resident of Bajria mohalla, Sahib Singh, a resident of Manjit Nagar, Vinay, a resident of Railway Colony, division number five, Puneet Sharma, a resident of Railway colony, division number five, Ashok Kumar, a resident of Kailash Nagar, Jodhewal, Vicky Kumar, a resident of Manohar Nagar, Parminder Singh, a resident of Bachittar Nagar, and Rajinder Singh, a resident of Shimlapuri.

Meanwhile, some persons beat up an auto-driver when he tried to stop them from teasing some girls travelling in his auto on way to Rajguru Nagar yesterday.

Mr Balwinder Singh, a resident of Lalton Khurd village complained to the Sarabha Nagar police that one Abhishek of the Housing Board Colony and seven others beat him up when he asked them to stop teasing the girls. The Sarabha Nagar police has registered a case under Sections 341, 323,427, 506, 148 and 149 of the IPC.



Clicking his way in life despite disability
Shivani Bhakoo

Ludhiana, September 14
Though God has been unkind to him, yet he does not complain. He considers himself lucky for what he has in life. He believes in the maxim, “never repent the things which are beyond your reach”. Mr Pawan Kumar Passi, 37, is deaf and dumb by birth but undeterred by this impairment, he is a self-reliant man.

A resident of Raikot (Ludhiana), Mr Pawan is a professional photographer since the past 15 years. He has been running a photography shop at Raikot eversince he passed his Senior Secondary Certificate (SSC) examination.

Sharing his experiences and feelings with Ludhiana Tribune, Mr Pawan said he took two years’ training course in photography from Delhi in 1982. Coming back to Raikot, he opened a small photography shop, which is now his source of income.

In a family of seven siblings, Pawan has two elder brothers who are also physically challenged like him. According to Mr Pawan, he had always been interested in photography and on seeing his interest, his father sent him to Delhi to get training in the profession. He got married to Rekha, a resident of the same town in 1989. Pawan said,” my wife has always been a pillar of strength. She is a housewife and is not physically challenged. I have two children, Jyoti, my daughter, is in fifth standard and son Parul is in fourth standard”.

He said his parents were not handicapped but his elder brothers suffered from hearing and speech impairment. One of his elder brother is a commission agent, while, another is a tailor. Both of them are married, he said Mr Pawan gives the credit of living a normal life to his parents, who he said always infused confidence in him to lead a normal life.

Mr Pawan said sometimes it becomes difficult for him to understand his customers’ exact requirements but mostly he succeeds in delivering the goods. “People in Raikot are now very familiar. I also click photographs on social gatherings, functions, events and parties. Recently, I clicked pictures of my favourite Bollywood actress Mahima Choudhry, who had performed at the South City. It was a wonderful experience. I am happy that my colleagues and friends appreciate my work”, added Pawan.

Mr Pawan says he is not looking for a government job. “My monthly income is around Rs 4,000. I can raire my family, though it is not easy with this amount. But still I am contended and happy. There are absolutely no regrets,” said Pawan. “I do not blame God for my disability, I am much better than many others. I thank God for what he has given to me”.


New device to replace crankshaft
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 14
Mr Rachhpal Singh Gill, a Ludhiana-based inventor, has claimed to have invented ‘‘A device to transfer power from piston to the wheel of an engine in lieu of the crankshaft.’’ He says, ‘‘With the help of his invention fuel consumption in engines can be reduced at least by 50 per cent.’’

On August 18, he sent this invention for patenting to the Patent Office, Delhi, along with requisite documents. The Patent Office has already acknowledged the receipt of documents.

He waited for five years to apply for the patenting of his invention as he was not willing to accept a number of rules of the Patent Office. The rules, according to him, do not ensure safety and security of the invention. He points out that one of the rules directs the inventor to leave his invention at the Patent Office without obtaining any receipt. The rule further states, ‘‘The receipt will be sent to the applicant inventor by post.’’ Contesting the rule he points out, ‘It is like a bank asking its depositors to leave money on the counter of the bank without obtaining any receipt and wait for the receipt to reach him at his home by post.’’

He has written to the Prime Minister and to Dr Meshekar of the Council of Industrial Research pointing out the lacunae in the patent rules.

Although he promptly received the receipt from the patent office for which he is very thankful to them, he is still not sure about the security and the safety of his invention. According to him, ‘‘Inventors should be entitled to get a photocopy of the list of applications received for the grant of patent rights to ensure transparency.’’

Describing his invention, he says about 10 years ago he realised that the crankshaft which is used in every piston-based engine wastes more than 50 per cent power in only transferring power from the piston to the wheel. ‘‘This new device is capable of transferring 100 per cent power from the piston to the wheel’’ he claims. According to him his invention will check power loss and ensure smaller engines for vehicles and power generators, besides other advantages.



Polybag stacks pose danger of fire
Shruti Setia

Ludhiana, September 14
Discarded polythene bags and broken plastic goods heaped below the fly-over near the bus stand pose a constant threat of a major conflagration that can engulf a jhugi cluster which houses hundreds of persons. This highly inflammable material is, in fact, collected by these very people who collect it for a living.

Although recycling of polythene is banned, yet large quantities of the used stuff is recycled daily. The rag pickers of the jhuggi colonies supply these polythene bags to recycling units in various parts of the city.

Many of them spend their days collecting these bags from roads, garbage dumps and dustbins. Bhola, one such rag picker, who supplies such bags to a recycling unit, was not ready to disclose the location of the unit.

These rag pickers keep piles of polybags near their jhuggis which they keep collecting for weeks and finally sell these for Rs 500 a quintal. Bhola said, although they were aware of the risk involved in storing these bags near their jhuggis yet they could not avoid it “because we cannot sell them in bits and we also cannot store them where we cannot keep a watch on them”. They separate the clean polythene from the dirty one and they have to sit for hours to do this sifting. The recycling units accept only clean bags as the dirty ones get stuck in their machines.

According to Ms Amanpreet Kaur Uppal, lecturer, biochemistry, polythene which is made up of ethylene molecules has long-term bad effects on health. The poisonous gasses which these industries emit can cause dangerous diseases. They also get stuck in drainage pipes and choke them.

While rules and laws have been made to prevent their recycling, this business continues to flourish.



‘Cong maligning govt’
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, September 14
“In its desperate bid to negate the achievements of the SAD-BJP government, headed by Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal, the Congress was pursuing a one-point programme of criticising the government.” This was stated by Mr Amrit Lal Aggarwal, the newly nominated adviser of the party in a press statement here today.

Mr Aggarwal maintained that the state was moving ahead in the fast lane of development as far as industry and infrastructure was concerned and a new chapter in the communal brotherhood had commenced since the present government took over. “However, the Congress leaders did not have the guts to accept the truth and they were carrying on a campaign to malign the government on one pretext or the other.”

Reacting to false and motivated propaganda against ‘sangat darshan’ programme of Mr Badal, he said this was not only literally taking the government to the doorsteps of the masses but another step further since the much-needed development grants were being made available on the spot. Whereas the Chief Minister had sacrificed his personal comforts and was carrying out intensive travelling to all nooks and corners of the state, the Congress leadership, sitting in the airconditioned rooms and palaces, was making false and baseless charges against the government. “In the coming assembly elections, the people of Punjab would have to decide between those conducting sangat darshan and the ones, who believe in ‘rangat darshan’ (luxurious life style),” he added.

Mr Aggarwal also made scathing attacks on former Punjab Chief Minister Rajinder Kaur Bhattal, saying she had no moral right to level allegations against the SAD leadership when she herself was facing criminal charges of misappropriation of funds during her tenure as Chief Minister.



Closure of passage resented
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, September 14
Residents of the D-Block of Model Town Extension are up in arms against the move of the improvement trust authorities to close a common passage on a vacant piece of land adjoining plot Nos 1346 and 1285. The passage, claim the residents, is in use for the past several years while the original Town Planning Scheme (TPS) of the locality shows the piece of land as trust property, out of which four plots have been carved and allotted to different persons.

According to Mr G.S. Midha, general secretary of Welfare Society, Model Town Extension-D, Part II, rampant encroachments in the locality had rendered the original TP Scheme meaningless and the improvement trust should make provision for declaring the passage a public street after seeking the mandatory approval of the state government for change in land use.

The society had submitted a memorandum to the Punjab Chief Minister, Mr Parkash Singh Badal, seeking his intervention in allowing the change of land use so that the residents were not denied the use of passage and access to the main road.

The chairman of the Ludhiana Improvement Trust (LIT), Mr Madan Mohan Vyas, who, accompanied by other senior officials, had visited the site in response to the plea of the residents, while talking to Ludhiana Tribune indicated that the trust was not averse to the demand of the residents. “Interests of the trust are of course foremost to us, but at the same time we have to have a positive attitude and keep in view our commitment of providing basic amenities and proper infrastructure to public.”


Youth Congress activists burn effigy
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, September 14
Hundreds of Youth Congress activists, led by Mr B.S. Thakur, general secretary, District Youth Congress, took out a procession in New Madho Puri, Sunder Nagar in the city yesterday and burnt an effigy of ‘terrorism’ to express their protest against attacks by terrorists in New York and Washington, in which thousands of innocent people had died.

The activists observed that lack of coordination among major countries in their fight against terrorism had led to a situation in which the global terrorism had gained strength. “Terrorists are enemies of a civilised society and every sane person should not only denounce their inhuman acts but should also join the fight against these elements”.

Prominent among those who present at the protest were Mr Ramesh Thakur, chairman, Manav Sahyog Ekta Samiti; Mr Ravi Soi, president, Public Help Line; Mr Balbir Singh Billa, president, New Subhash Nagar Welfare Society; Mr Ashwani Sachdeva, secretary, City Help Line Council; Mr Daljit Singh Shunty, secretary, New Madhopuri Market Association; Mr Sujit Gupta, president, Bhartiya Ekta Sahyog Samiti; Mr Sheetal Jain, secretary, Hindu Sikh Ekta Club; Ms Jaswinder Kaur Bhatti, general secretary, Mahila Congress; and Ms Amarjit Bhatti.

Mr Thakur made an appeal to the world leaders to initiate necessary steps to frame such deterrent laws against terrorism that no country should provide shelter to enemies of humanities.


Nothing beautiful about this garden
A Correspondent

Ludhiana, September 14
The only public garden in the city is literally turning into a jungle, with wild bushes growing around. The Nehru Rose Garden was supposed to be one of the few places in the city to be free from pollution. Most city residents go there for morning walks.

Once a beautiful garden, broken roads and damaged flower beds greet the visitors now. There are no roses in the entire Rose Garden these days. The canal side of the garden was repaired recently. New tiles were placed in the path and the canal was illuminated with lights. Now most of the tiles are broken and the fountains never work in the morning. The whirl machines are always jammed.

The pavements are broken at places. These are very narrow. In the morning, when the garden is full of morning walkers, it becomes difficult to walk along these pavements. 


Kidnap mystery solved, accused arrested
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 14
The mystery behind the alleged kidnapping of BA II student of Arya College Ludhiana, from main bazar of Brindaban Road here in broad day light (at 4.30 pm) on September 12 has been solved with the arrest of the main accused, a resident of Sant Fateh Singh Nagar, Dugri Road, Ludhiana by the local police. An FIR under Section 364/34 of the IPC has been registered in police station Haibowal.

Police officials claimed that during the preliminary questioning of the accused it was revealed that the accused had "lured" the girl to accompany him to Chandigarh in a car belonging to his maternal uncle. The girl accepted his proposal voluntarily and agreed to act as per his bidding. On the way to Chandigarh, the accused reportedly contacted her father and uncle through his mobile phone and allegedly threatened them of dire consequences, if they continued to meddle with the affairs of a temple at Sirsa in Haryana. During this telephonic conversation the accused allegedly identified himself as Pritam Dass, and in order to convince the father of the girl regarding the authenticity of his threat, he persuaded the girl to speak a couple of words regarding her identity and whereabouts to her father.

On receiving this phone call, the parents of the girl were gripped with panic and as the information regarding the alleged kidnapping of the girl was conveyed to the police, it immediately swung into action. The couple stayed in a hotel in Chandigarh for the night. From here the accused again called up around midnight and demanded a huge ransom of Rs 2 lakh from the father of the girl for her release . During this hour long telephonic conversation, the accused intentionally tried to mislead the father of the girl by repeated suggestive references pointing towards the involvement of some local person in this crime because he was having a grouse and feeling of ill-will against them for some personal reasons.

A special team was constituted and the entire district police was put on high alert. As the investigation continued, the needle of suspicious started hovering around the accused and concerned efforts to track him down were immediately was set into motion. When the couple realised that the police was zeroing in on them they decided to give in and delude the parents of the girl as well as the police by concocting a typical sterol-types Bollywood style story of kidnapping. 



Govt to help industries combat WTO impact
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, September 14
The state government will provide technical and financial assistance to the industries to combat the adverse impact of the WTO regime. This was stated by the Director-cum-Secretary of the Industry and Commercial Department, Punjab, Mr Darbara Singh Guru, on his visit to the city today.

Mr Guru visited a cycle parts unit, M/s Vishvakarma Industries, and an auto parts manufacturing unit, M/s Bharat International, where he keenly watched the manufacturing process and interacted with members of industry to apprise himself of their difficulties.

Among others who present at the meeting were Mr Inderjit Singh Pardhan, Mr K.K. Seth and Mr Avtar Singh, all office-bearers of the Chamber of Industrial and Commercial Undertakings; Mr Jagat Singh, Mr Charan Singh Kohli, both office-bearers of the Ludhiana Motor Parts Manufacturers Association; Mr M.S. Bhogal, president of the Ludhiana Engineering Association; Mr Ajit Singh Kular, Mr Chanrajit Singh Vishvakarma, Mr Gurpargat Sigh Kahlon, Mr Manmohan Singh Ubhi, all office-bearers of the Ludhiana Electroplating Industries Association; Mr Inderjit Singh Arora, Mr Tejvinder Singh Begwan, Mr Baljit Singh, Mr Inderjit Singh and Mr Mungi Lal.

Mr Guru said at the meeting the government decided to give fiscal aid to industrial units to face the global competition created by WTO. A separate WTO cell had been set up in the Industry Department to provide information to the industrialists regarding WTO. Similarly, a separate wing of the SSI had also been opened to provide relief to small and tiny industries.

He further said in the near future special incentives would be provided to industries. The subsidy will continue and seven per cent interest will be contributed by the government on the loan taken for modernisation. The government was also thinking on the lines of providing subsidy to the polluting units for setting up the treatment plants.

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