Friday, September 28, 2001, Chandigarh, India


L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Farmers told to use latest technologies
Kanchan Vasdev
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 27
Kisan Mela, the biggest known event in the agricultural circles of the state for the transfer of farm technology, began at Punjab Agricultural University (PAU) here today.

With a significant theme — precision farming for high profits — the emphasis of the mela was to educate farmers face challenges posed by the implications of the WTO. The mela organised by PAU twice in year attracts thousands of farmers from all over the state and adjoining states of Haryana, Himachal Pradesh and Rajasthan.

A favourite event with the farming community, the farmers get to know the latest in the farming sector and buy the latest seeds and learn technologies. The large gathering stands as a testimony to the contribution of PAU, the premier institute of the state, in helping the farmers solve the problems of shortage of foodgrains and becoming instrumental in ushering in the Green Revolution.

The mela was inaugurated by the Agriculture Minister, Mr Gurdev Singh Badal, who, while addressing a large gathering of farmers, said that the government had vowed to procure each and every grain produced by the farmers.

Lauding the efforts of the farmers to make the country self-sufficient, Mr Badal said that they all should come forward and fight the challenges posed by the opening of the international market. He called for an improvement in variety and minimum expenditure on production. He appealed to the farmers to use only certified seeds and not be misled by unscrupulous elements.

Mr Badal remarked that the failure of cotton crop last year was mainly due to sowing of unrecommended varieties and farmers should learn from past experiences. He disclosed that the Punjab Government had approached the Centre for giving compensation to farmers who incurred huge losses.

Mr Badal urged the farmers to go for diversification and assured every possible help by his government in the form of establishing suitable agro-processing industries and also exploring international market for export.

Addressing the farmers, the Vice-Chancellor of PAU, Dr K.S. Aulakh, called upon the farmers to adopt precision farming in order to increase their profits. He said that in the past Punjabi farmers had extensively used the natural resources of water, land and air. Excessive use of irrigation water had led to lowering of the water table in certain areas.

He said that the need of the hour was — efficient utilisation of natural resources and other inputs. Dr Aulakh cautioned that unless "we lower our cost of production and raise the quality of our produce, we will not be able to compete in the world market". Dr Aulakh strongly advocated the need for discarding the traditional ways of farming and adopting scientific ways.

While addressing the farmers Dr Jaspinder Singh Kolar, Director for Extension Education and chief organiser of the Kisan Mela, said that diversification in the agriculture field was the key to success. He said that rice and wheat rotation in Punjab had already become saturated and new problems had cropped up.

He further said that shifting of 10 per cent area to fodder and 30 per cent to vegetable production would be a big step towards diversification and would go a long way in increasing the income of farmers. He called upon farmers to be in constant touch with the university scientists in order to update their knowledge on the farm front.

The major attraction in the mela — seed distribution centre — sold seeds of latest varieties of wheat PBW-343, PBW 373, PBW 138, PBW 276. The seeds of latest varieties of gram (PBG-1, PDG-3 and GL-769); barley (PL-426, PL-171); raya (RLM-619, PBR-91) l and torai (TL-15) were also sold to farmers.

The various departments of the university had put up their stalls where scientists apprised the farmers of the new techniques and methods of cultivation. The Department of Horticulture demonstrated scientific method of planting and maintaining orchards. The Department of Entomology stressed upon integrated pest control methods on cotton and other rabi crops.

The charts were also put up to make the farmers aware regarding harmful and friendly insets. The farmers were also taught the safe methods of using different pesticides. The recently evolved technologies for production of multiple queen bees from a single hive and royal jelly attracted attention from a large number of farmers.

The Department of Floriculture exhibited different flowers and 3000 packet of nargis were purchased by farmers. The Department of Agronomy had laid field demonstration of new crops like celery, fenugreek, fennel coriander etc.

Row over pvt seed stalls

Seed stalls put up by private parties outside Punjab Agricultural University (PAU) on the occasion of the Kisan Mela sparked off a controversy with allegations that the seeds allegedly produced by the university were being sold by these stalls outside the university.

The presence to stalls had even angered the Agriculture Minister who, while addressing the farmers, said that the seed varieties being sold by the stalls were actually released and recommended by PAU and their purity was being questioned.

He announced that he would take up the matter with the Police Department and lodge a formal complaint demanding action against these people. The Minister even advised farmers not to buy those seeds and trust only those sold by the university.

The allegations which were raising eyebrows were that some former members of the faculty of the university owned these seed shops and they were allegedly selling them after somehow managing to get them from the university.

It was also being alleged that one of the seed shops was owned by a retired professor whose sons were still working with the university and that too in the department concerned.

Last year also a similar situation was being witnessed and there were allegations that the seeds of PAU were being pilfered and were being sold by the shops outside the campus.

Interestingly, an inquiry initiated by the university had established that PAU seeds were being pilfered and not much could be done to check the pilferage. The then Director of Research of PAU, Dr M.S. Bajwa, had said that the university was chalking out a strategy to check the pilferage of the seeds.



Industrialists ask CM to release subsidies
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 27
Industrialists and traders have urged the state Chief Minister, Mr Parkash Singh Badal, to release the pending capital subsidy, amounting more than Rs 500 crore. They said the state government, under the state industry policy, had promised capital subsidy and sales tax exemptions to the entrepreneurs to set up units in the backward areas of the state.

Though the sales tax exemptions were later taken back by the government, the capital subsidy had not been paid for the past many years. Consequently, hundreds of units in the region have become sick due to the non- payment of subsidies on time.

A delegation of industrialists and traders, led by Lala Lajpat Rai, M.P., BJP (Rajya Sabha), met the CM, the Finance Minister, Mr Kanwaljit Singh, Secretary, Industry, Mr Ramesh Inder Singh, and Financial Commissioner, Excise and Taxation, Mr Y.S. Ratra, and demanded the release of that subsidy at the earliest.

The delegation discussed the issues of inclusion of the ‘H’ form in the deemed assessment scheme, dropping of the ‘C’ form on jacket exports to other states, rectification of notification issued on August 1, 2001 and to grant Central excise exemption to the acrylic yarn SSI manufacturing units, having an investment of up to Rs 1 crore.

Mr Behl reminded the CM that he had promised them on May 15 here to clear the backlog of incentives issued from time to time. However, nothing has been done in this regard.

He said that release of IFL incentives under the 1973 policy were still pending.

The delegation suggested to the CM that these subsidies could be adjusted against the pending payment of industrialists towards the government. The CM and the FM assured the delegation to clear payments at the earliest.

The industry representatives demanded the inclusion of the ‘H’ form in the deemed assessment scheme and asked that the demand for the ‘C’ form on jackets, exported to other states should be dropped. The Finance Commissioner, Taxation, assured the delegation that necessary action will be taken within the next few days.

Mr Badal reportedly asked the Secretary, Industry, to pursue the case of industry with the Central government to increase the exemption limit to Rs 1 crore for the small scale acrylic yarn manufacturing units to save them from the payment of Central excise. The representatives hoped that the final decision would be taken soon to fulfill these demands.


The unholy councillor-contractor alliance?
Kuldip Bhatia

Ludhiana, September 27
The unholy alliance between certain councillors and contractors in the Municipal Corporation here is thriving as the MC administration chooses to look the other way. Despite clear statutory restriction on the councillors that their kin should not be working as contractors in the civic body and the contractors also made to file a sworn affidavit that they were not closely related to any councillor or MC official, several contractors, who happened to be immediate family members of councillors, were operating with impunity.

Not that the government was not aware or some of the scrupulous councillors had not made attempts to bring the irregularity under focus. Inspite of the fact that the relationship between the councillors and contractors is a clear case for disqualification and the government directions in this regard were unambiguous, still, responding to numerous complaints, the Local Bodies Department had sent a communication to the MC administration in July last to conduct a screening and obtain fresh affidavits from enlisted contractors, if desirable, that they were not related to any councillor. That the directions have not been put into practice so far, is another story.

The issue has been raised in the MC general house as well, more than once. Giani Baldev Singh, a SAD councillor, had sought to raise the matter of relationship between the councillors and contractors at least twice. The house had unanimously resolved that names of councillors, whose kin were enlisted as contractors in the MC, should be placed on the floor of the house. But even after several months have elapsed since the resolution was adopted, the list of such councillors or contractors, has not seen the light of the day for obvious reasons.

Senior MC officials were definitely in the know of things and they admitted it in private but developed cold feet when asked to acknowledge the fact on record. The reason cited behind the deliberate inaction on the part of MC administration by knowledgeable sources was that once the fact became public, many feathers will be ruffled and many a skeleton would come tumbling down from the cupboards. Even otherwise, some of the MC officials would rather have the nexus between the contractors and councillors flourish than being smashed for the simple reason that they did not want to annoy the political-big- wigs.

Not to be left behind, some other enterprising councillors, cutting across party affiliations, who did not have their close relatives as contractors, were said to have entered into ‘benami’ partnerships or else ‘understanding’ with their favourite contractors. Highly placed sources told Ludhiana Tribune that the concerned councillors exerted their influence to ensure that all or most of the works, related to their wards, were awarded to the particular contractor.

The District Youth Congress had also submitted a memorandum to the Punjab Governor, through the Commissioner, Municipal Corporation, here on Tuesday demanding a CBI probe in the well-organised racket of close relatives of councillors and MC officials being enlisted as contractors and siphoning off funds.

When asked to comment on the inaction against the conniving councillors and contractors, who were eating into the civic body funds, a senior MC official shrugged (which itself was meaningful) and quipped: “When every- body is happy, why should we complain ?”


PAU students call off strike
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 27
Students of the College of Agriculture (COA), Punjab Agricultural University (PAU), have called off their strike. The decision came just before the inauguration of the Kisan Mela. Much to the relief of the university authorities the students did not obstruct the mela as had earlier been threatened by them.

The PAU authorities had arranged their meeting with the chief guest, Mr Gurdev Singh Badal, Minister of Agriculture, in Sutton House before the inauguration of the mela.

After the meeting, the students said they were assured by the minister that the government would advertise 300 posts of agriculture teachers in schools and 300 posts of agriculture development officers very soon.

Later talking to the mediapersons, Mr Badal said their matter would be taken up in the meeting of the Cabinet. He said the posts would be advertised very soon.

The students said they were satisfied with the assurance and had decided not to protest in the mela.

Meanwhile, resentment prevailed among the students of various departments of the university who could not participate in the mela as they had to attend to their classes.

The students were asked to attend their classes as they were already falling short of lectures due to various protests and strikes by them in the current semester. The university was facing a problem as many teaching hours were lost due to the strike and it would be difficult for the teachers to complete the syllabus.

The students said this was for the first time in the history of PAU that the students were not given holiday on the occasion of the Kisan mela.


Major fire in Satluj Club
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 27
A major fire broke out in the health club of the Satluj Club, here today. Club officials said the fire broke out at around 12 noon due to a short-circuit. The officials have put the total loss at Rs 25 lakh.

Thanks to the availability of the latest fire-fighting equipment installed in the club, a major tragedy was averted as several women were present in the club when the fire broke out. The officials said employees present in the club immediately used the fire extinguisher and all members were rescued safety.

A towel store, entrance to the sauna and steam bath, Jacuzzi and a wall of the badminton court were also damaged. Several fire-tenders were also pressed into service.

The secretary general of the club, Mr A.S. Chawla, immediately rushed to the club. He said the repairs and renovation work would be started soon and the health club had been closed for a month.

The Deputy Commissioner, Mr S.K. Sandhu, who is also the ex officio president of the club, the Additional Deputy Commissioner, Mr S.R. Kaler, and a team of officials of the district administration visited the site and supervised the measures.


Set up panel, demands SSF (Mehta)
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 27
The Sikh Students Federation (Mehta) has demanded setting up of a commission to probe into the activities of all religious sects, including the sect headed by Baba Piara Singh Bhaniara. The federation has warned against their activities, claiming that these could pose a danger to peace and tranquility in the state.

Addressing a press conference here today, its president, Mr Gurcharan Singh Grewal, welcomed the arrest of Baba Bhaniara and demanded registration of a case under Section 302 of the IPC against him. He pointed out that the Supreme Court had accorded the status of a Guru to Guru Granth Sahib. And people who had shown disrespect to Guru Granth Sahib should be prosecuted.

Mr Grewal appreciated the measures taken by the state government in curbing the activities of Baba Bhaniara.


Dharna against black marketing of rations
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 27
Local industrial workers are sore over having to spend large amounts every month on the purchase of kerosene and rations owing to the alleged nexus between officials of the Food and Civil Supplies Department and licence holders of fair price ration shops.

Despite repeated complaints, no action has been taken against the officials or the depot holders for selling subsidised kerosene in the black market. These views were expressed at a dharna held here today in front of the District Food and Civil Supplies Office to protest against the alleged black marketing of kerosene and other commodities. Members of the Moulder and Steel Workers’ Union, the Punjab Industrial Workers’ Union and the Democratic Rights Association also participated in the dharna.

Addressing the workers, Mr Arvind Kumar, general secretary, Moulder and Steel Workers’ Union, said,‘‘ The department has failed to provide kerosene, wheat and rice on time to the public. The ration through fair price ration shops is often provided during the last days of month and that too for a few hours. The workers are subsequently forced to purchase rations and kerosene from the open market at a much higher rate.’’

The speakers alleged that labourers’ families were passing through a difficult phase due to loss of jobs and consequent fall in standard of living to below poverty line (BPL). Further, the ban on issuance of new BPL cards had accentuated the difficulties for them. They alleged discrimination in the issuance of new ration cards.

Mr Arvind Kumar said though thousands of workers’ families were below the poverty line, subsidised rations were provided to only a few families. Mr Vijay Narain, president of the association, said subsidised rice was not being provided to them and the department was surrendering the quota of more than 2000 quintals every month on the plea that there were no takers for rice.

The speakers alleged that the officials demanded up to Rs 500 for a simple card and BPL cards had been banned for the past many years. The workers asked the department to take corrective steps, failing they would intensify their agitation.


People ignoring Bhagat Singh’s ideology’
Our Correspondent

Ahmedgarh, September 27
She is desperate because beneficiaries of the freedom achieved by sacrifices of patriots like Shaheed Bhagat Singh have ignored their deeds and ideology.

Ms Amarjot Thind, a niece of Shaheed Bhagat Singh, does not mind the state government celebrating the birth anniversary of a leader of a neighbouring state on a massive scale, but she joins the people of Punjab in showing anguish over ignoring the birth anniversary of the national hero which falls on September 28.

While talking to Ludhiana Tribune Ms Thind said attitude of all political parties towards the family during the post-Independence period had frustrated her. She expressed satisfaction that a leading newspaper had chosen to publish her feelings on her uncle's birth anniversary.

Mr Krishan Singh (father), Mr Swaran Singh and Mr Ajit Singh (uncles) and Mr Arjun Singh (grandfather) were all in jails when Bhagat Singh made his first postnatal cry. They were all released from jail the same day, hence he was named Bhagat Singh (bhagan wala). As he grew, he decided to fight British atrocities. When his grandfather commented that he (Bhagat Singh) had inherited patriotism from his forefathers, he declared that one day their family would be known by his name.

Ms Thind states that her uncle (elder brother of his father) was a handsome softhearted person. Bomb blast was not an outcome of a momentary emotional rage. Rather it was a well-evaluated symbolic challenge to the British power by a learned statesman.

She is sad because she thinks that a family which has contributed towards freedom struggle consecutively for three generations has remained unrecognised. She says none of the family members seeks any assistance from government, but there must be an attempt to recall the history of the family. Present generation must be told how the female members used to guard their kids during nights when the males were in jail. According to her, hero of the slogan 'Pagri Sambal Jatta', Ajit Singh, had learnt patriotic alphabets from his father Arjun Singh and shared jails with his brother Kishan Singh (Bhagat Singh's father) and Swaran Singh. People now remember the sacrifice of Bhagat Singh only and that too, only on certain days.

A neighbouring state has constructed a sepulchre of Ajit Singh, but his home state is probably without a wall calendar even. Frustrated at the leadership of his native state, Mr Kulbir Singh, a former BJP MLA from Ferozepore (Amarjot's father), shifted to Faridabad. Not being recognised in Punjab, Mr Kultar Singh shifted to UP. He became a minister there. Had late Giani Zail Singh not got Bhagat Singh’s sister a title of Punjab Mata, no body could have known their family in Punjab.

Somber she was again on recollecting that it was her father who tried to work on history of the freedom fighters’ family. His sudden death resulted in the closure of that chapter at the introductory stage. She does not expect any government or social organisation will come forward to complete his work, but she wants that we should develop the ideology of Shaheed Bhagat Singh and guard national interests and our freedom.


From Mother Teresa to music maestro
Asha Ahuja

Ludhiana, September 27
Ace photographer Raghu Rai said working with Mother Teresa was the most powerful and memorable experience for him. He photographed in 1970 when the world did not know much about her. They published a small volume of her photographs in 1972. She exercised a very strong influence over him. It was her love that bound him to her.

A Padam Shri awardee, he was here in connection with the programme Virasat 2001, organised by SPIC MACAY. In his interaction with the media at Dumra Auditorium of Dayanand Medical College and Hospital, he spoke of his latest work. He said, “My latest work concerns 12 stalwarts in different fields of music. Some of my subjects are Ravi Shankar, Ali Akbar Khan, S. Bala Chandra, Bhimsen Joshi, Bismillah Khan, Alla Rakha and Zakir Hussain. I decided to do photo features on these great artists for two reasons. Every classical musician belongs to a traditional ‘gharana’, within which they have created their own style. I wanted to capture their character and flavour. I wanted to capture their energy, which is closely related to rhythm and music. For this purpose, I have been staying with the musicians and their families to get the essence of their creativity.”

He said every individual had an aura and to capture that through the lens was what mattered. He said photography was one of the highest forms of art. He claimed that if one saw a photograph clicked by Raja Din Dayal 100 years back and a painting of the same period by a good artist, the impact of the photograph would be more. He added that the photograph captured the spirit and energy and one was deeply affected.

“Indian movies are the common cultural bond through the length and breadth of India and its neighbouring countries. The area of photography is vast. There are various kinds of photographies, like industrial, nature, sports and wildlife. The scope is endless for upcoming photographers, but only with dedication and seriousness can they climb up the ladders of success. In this world of fast food and the desire to be an instant success, youngsters do not do “tapasaya”. The canvas of life is so big and I have captured just a wee bit of it”, he added. He was keen to gather more experiences.

Bored with his government job as a chemical engineer, he lived with his brother Paul, a photographer with a daily. He said, “Working for different newspapers and magazines, I have learnt to handle all kinds of assignments. I cannot say which is my favourite photograph. Every experience has its own strength. Everyone has a third eye and one has to make an effort to open it. I have been telling editors that they are far from reality sitting in their ivory towers. It is the photographers who bring the reality of life the public”.

His pictures of the Bhopal tragedy had made people aware of the magnitude of the tragedy. His pictures of refugees from Bangladesh had brought vividly to light their plight. His photographs contributed to the popularity of an English magazine.

He said latest digital cameras for professionals were expensive and heavy and were not advanced. He was sure that better and lighter digital cameras would appear in the market shortly which he would like to use. He stated that in case he ventured into cinematography, he would like to make documentaries.


Truckers join hands to fight corruption
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 27
The scene of the truck transportation in Punjab is all set to change in the coming days with hundreds of small truck operators unions uniting under a single banner with joint efforts of Mr Jagdish Chander, president, Ludhiana Transport Welfare Association, and Mr Sarabjit Singh, general secretary, Punjab State Goods Transport Association. The unity movement has gained momentum with the announcement to abolish octroi by the Chief Minister, Mr Parkash Singh Badal. The move has been hastened following a fear among truck operators about the introduction of hefty toll tax in the state.

Leaders of various unions held a state-level meeting here yesterday. It was called to form a non-political joint action committee to fight against the alleged corruption of district transport officials (DTOs), regional transport officials (RTOs) and Excise and Taxation Department officials.

Mr Sarabjit Singh, said, “The Transport and Finance Department has given monthly target to the DTOs to collect crores of rupees from us in the name of violation of various traffic rules. The officials have often denied fixation of targets, but we have given documentary proofs to the CM and the Transport Minister, however, no action has been taken to stop this practice”.


Sepoy cremated with honours
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, September 27
Sepoy Pardeep Singh of 1 Sikh Light Infantry, who had laid down his life in an encounter with militants at Surankot in Poonch sector of Jammu and Kashmir on September 25, was cremated with honours at his native Sudhar village in the district today.

With tears in their eyes and patriotic slogans on their lips, a large number of people from several surrounding villages joined the funeral procession when a contingent of the Army led the tricolour-clad body of the martyr to the cremation ground. The pyre was lit by Subedar Santa Singh (retd), the father of the deceased.

Floral tributes were paid to the martyr by Mr S.R. Kler, Additional Deputy Commissioner, Mr Ranjit Singh Talwandi (SAD-B), former Chairman, Punjab Small Industries and Export Corporation, Mr Vipan Chandra Pal (BJP), Mr Harmohinder Singh (Congress), MLA from Raikot, Col H.S. Toor, Mr Inderpreet Singh Randhawa, SDM, Raikot, Wg Cdr M.S. Randhawa, Mr Paramjit Singh Goraya, DSP, Dakha, Brig Sunil Dhawan, Station Commander, Ludhiana, Commandant 45 AD, Commandant, 17 ADF, Commanding Officer, 103 Inf Bn TA and 715 AD Brigade.

Sepoy Pardeep Singh, who belonged to Ramdasia community, was born in 1979 and had joined the Army four years ago. He is survived by his father, mother and two unmarried sisters.


DYC flays government
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, September 27
The District Youth Congress (DYC) has lambasted the state government for scuttling the move by the Municipal Corporation General House to provide free water supply and sewerage facility to residents of the city. Well before the SAD-BJP coalition government took up the issue of the abolition of octroi, which has now been stayed by the Punjab and Haryana High Court for the time being, way back in May this year, the MC had adopted a unanimous resolution, calling for free water and sewerage for residential purposes in the city.

However, the state government had stayed the resolution on the ground that such facility, could not be provided to the residents of Ludhiana alone, which would be an act of discrimination against the residents of other towns and cities in the state.

In a memorandum submitted to the Commissioner, Municipal Corporation, Dr S.S. Sandhu, the DYC President Mr Parminder Mehta has pointed out that the state government had in a way chosen to belittle the MC General House and had usurped the authority of the chosen representatives of the people by putting the proposal of free water supply and sewerage on the back burner.

Meanwhile, addressing a mass contact rally at Barewal in Ward No 44, Mr Pawan Diwan, Chairman, Urban Development Cell of the Indian Youth Congress and Mr Akshay Bhanot, District Chairman of the cell, charged the civic body with serious irregularities in the survey of house tax, conducted through a private company.


Protest rally by pensioners
Our Correspondent

Samrala, September 27
The Punjab State Pensioners Mahasangh held a protest rally here today to press upon the government to implement the recommendations of the Fifth Pay Commission. About 200 pensioners raised slogans in support of their demands. Mr Prem Sagar Sharma, state president, Mr Behari Lal Saddi, vice-president, Mr Balbir Singh, cashier, Mr Joginder Singh Josh, Mr Pritam Singh and Mr M.S.Hira, addressed the rally.


Bank employees’ protest
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 27
The Punjab Bank Employees Federation (PBEF) held a demonstration in front of Indian Bank, here today, in support of the strike call given by the Indian Bank Employees Union for tomorrow.

The strike call has been given to protest against the non-implementation of MoU signed between the Indian Bankers Association and the United Federation of Bank Unions on June 29 for the disbursement of wage revision arrears due for the period between November 1, 1997, and June 30, 2000. 


Minor raped by fellow villager
Our Correspondent

Khamano, September 27
A minor girl of Manderan village has allegedly been raped by a youth named Harchand Singh of the same village.

According to information available, the girl (13) was at her home with two younger brothers and aged grandmother. Her father had reportedly gone out on some work. The girl’s mother had died earlier. It has been alleged that yesterday, at about 11.30 pm, she woke up to drink water and was grabbed by Harchand Singh.

The suspect dragged her to the nearby paddy field and molested her. In the meantime, hearing her loud cries for help, her grandmother and some villagers reached the spot but the suspect was able to flee the scene. Sarpanch Kesar Singh of the village reported the matter to the police. The local police subsequently arrested the suspect and booked him under Sections 452 and 376 of the IPC. Meanwhile, Binder Singh Ranwan has alleged that a nephew of the village sarpanch was an accomplice in the crime.


ROBBER ARRESTED: The Dehlon police has arrested a robber who had recently tried to rob a scooterist at gunpoint. According to Mr Bhupinder Singh, an electricity board official, he was robbed of his gold bangle by two scooter-borne youths at gunpoint. When the miscreants tried to flee, he confronted the one who was having the pistol. In the meantime, a police party reached the place of incident, near Dhulkote village, and nabbed the miscreant who was later identified as Harjinder Singh of Bassian. The other culprit fled the scene with the bangle and the pistol. Their scooter has been taken into the police custody. The absconding robber has been identified as Kuldeep Singh of Rurka village. The police has registered an FIR.


TRACTOR STOLEN: A tractor (PB-43-1521) was stolen from the local grain market here yesterday. According to the tractor owner, Mr Gurwinder Singh, his close relative Sukhdev Singh had gone to the grain market to sell the paddy on his tractor. The local police has registered a case of theft in this regard.


Doc sentenced
Our correspondent

Jagraon, September 27
The Judicial Magistrate, Mr Hari Singh Grewal sentenced Dr Ramesh Jain of Jain Hospital, Raikot, to 18-month rigorous imprisonment under Section 304 A, IPC, and a fine of Rs 5,000 for negligence of duty which had led to the death of Narinder Kaur in 1997.

According to Mr Jagroop Singh, husband of the deceased, his wife was admitted to the Jain Hospital for abortion in June 1997, where Dr Ramesh Jain conducted an MTP on July 1, 1997, but her condition worsened. He was advised to take her to another hospital, but she died later.


Woman, paramour booked
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 27
An almost three-month-old case of the sudden death of a resident of Dholletta village near Phillaur, who allegedly died due to excessive drinking, took a curious turn here today when the city police booked his wife, her alleged paramour and an accomplice on the charge of murdering the man.

The three have been booked on the complaint of Ms Satnam Singh, father of the deceased, who claimed that his son was killed by the three. Mr Satnam Singh alleged that his daughter-in-law, Paramjit Kaur had illicit relations with a man, Pappu, and the two along with a friend, Harwinder Singh, had allegedly killed his son by mixing some poisonous substance in wine.

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