Tuesday, December 4, 2001, Chandigarh, India


L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S



Child found murdered
Tantrik may be behind the crime
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, December 3
An 11-year-old child was found murdered in a gruesome manner at a vacant plot in Kabari market, near Samrala Chowk, this morning. A large number of wounds, inflicted with a sharp-edged weapon, were seen on the body.

The child apparently bled to death. There were some marks on his wrists and legs, which suggested that he was tied with a rope before being cut at different parts by the weapon.

The victim has been identified as Sonu, the eldest of Darshan Lal, a resident of Guru Arjun Dev Nagar, who works at a printing press near Akalagarh market. The boy had been missing since last evening.

The plot from where the body was found was used by shopkeepers and visitors to the market to urinate. One such visitor saw the body.

The manner in which the boy was murdered has led the police to suspect that it was a murder by some tantrik. The main indication was a large cut on the chest. Police sources said it was a normal practice of the tantriks to get blood from the chest of a child, mostly the eldest in a family. Interestingly, some unknown person had given a mysterious ‘taweez’ (amulet) to the boy two days ago. His mother, Babli, told the police that she had removed the ‘taweez’.

The SSP, Mr H.S. Sidhu, said on the basis of circumstantial evidence, the police was suspecting a case of killing by the tantrik. He said the police had got vital clues.

The police has raided a number of places, especially slums in and around Samrala Chowk and rounded up a few persons.

There was panic as well as anger among a large number of residents of Guru Arjun Dev Nagar as well as shopkeepers of Kabari Bazaar. They demanded immediate arrest of the accused.



Contractors plan to stop works
Cash-strapped body in dire straits
Kuldip Bhatia

Ludhiana December 3
The abolition of octroi and the consequential loss of almost Rs 10 crore monthly income could not have come at a worst time for the Municipal Corporation here, which was already involved in a battle of wits with more than 200 contractors, for the past more than two months. The contractors, enlisted with the civic body, piqued over long delays in their payments for works executed by them, have been virtually boycotting the call for tenders during this period.

While the MC was in the process of arriving at a settlement with the contractors after having done away with a private quality supervision agency and claiming to have streamlined the system to ensure a fixed time frame for payment to the contractors, the abolition of octroi, announced by the state Government, has upset its apple cart. With cash-strapped MC in no position to make new financial commitments and even unable to honour its previous liabilities, till the time the government came out with a viable alternative for resource generation, the contractors have finally decided to suspend all ongoing development works.

In a meeting with the MC Commissioner, Mr R.L. Kalsia, and the city Mayor, Mr Apinder Singh Grewal, the MC contractors made it known unambiguously that they could no longer continue with the works allotted to them unless their payments, both running bills and final bills, were paid in a stipulated period. They apprehended, and rightly so, that till the time the alternative resource generation plan was put in place and yielded results, the MC would have no funds to pay for the development works and whatever meagre funds were generated from sources other than octroi, would go towards meeting the wage bill.

According to Mr Jaswinder Singh Bhola, president, MC Contractors Union, the decision to suspend civic works would not only be confined to ongoing development projects but depending upon the payment position in next couple of days, the works related to operation and maintenance of essential services like running of tubewells on contract basis and maintenance of street light points, could also be affected for the simple reason that ‘no contractor can continue working without being paid what is due to him.’

That the populist measure, resorted to by the SAD-BJP coalition, in a desperate bid to woo back the urban electorate, would have serious repercussions as far as the working of civic bodies in the state was concerned, but the after effects would be so quick and so hard-hitting was not known. The stark reality that all the development works were grinding to a halt was bound to hit where it hurts the most, the city population, as well as their elected representatives, particularly when both the assembly and civic elections were at hand.

The MC Commissioner, Mr R.L. Kalsia, told Ludhiana Tribune that according to a rough estimate, development projects to the extent of Rs 100 crore were in various stages of execution in the city. In the changed scenario of resource crunch, as a result of abolition of octroi, some way out has to be made. “We are focusing on ways to phase out certain major works and some other projects will have to be shelved for the time-being till the financial situation improves.”

It was reliably learnt that cash reserve position of the MC was not healthy and whatever little funds were available in reserve at present, would be nearly exhausted in meeting the yawning gap between the monthly income from all sources and the hefty wage bill, in addition to meeting other essential expenses like petrol, telephone and electricity bills. 

Moreover, the MC administration would also be in a tight spot once the huge interest on Rs 17.80 crore bonds, floated to mop up resources for development works last year, became due and an instalment of interest and principal had to be paid to Housing and Urban Development Corporation (HUDCO) for Rs 105 crore loan for an ambitious sewerage project, if the State Government failed to come to its rescue.



Poisonous effluents hit fish population
Kanchan Yasdev
Tribune News Service

A fisherman fishing from the Sutlej

Phillaur, December 3
As a fallout of the discharge of poisonous effluents in the Sutlej near Ropar, the number of the fish in the river near Phillaur has reduced drastically during the past 15 days with water turning black.

A Tribune team visited the river near Phillaur today only to find out that the fish population had decreased considerably and the water which had turned black was smelling foul.

The fishermen told the Tribune that they had also noticed that the fish population in the river had decreased manifold.

“We do not know what has happened this time. Earlier we used to catch around a quintal of fish in one catch. But now we get only 5 kg or so,” said Acchhe Lal, a fisherman, who was wondering what had gone wrong.

Showing his small catch from the river after waiting for half an hour he said,” You can see the number of fish we have caught now. You can even count them. We are feeling bad and are not able to do anything.”

He also said the water had turned dirty and he was also getting skin allergies while catching the fish. “Whenever I go into the water to catch fish, I feel a lot of irritation on my skin which lasts quite a long,” he said. “Of late the water has also started stinking and people say that the effluents of some cardboard factory in Ropar are polluting it.”

Another man, Pannu Lal who works in a nursery near the river said earlier the water was very clear but it had started turning blackish some 20 days ago. “We do not know what is happening but surely something is wrong with the river. We used to have a very clean water here, but the industries are consuming everything by not following the right methods to discharge the effluents,” he said.

Many visitors criticised the sewerage and water treatment plant of Phillaur, which, they said, was discharging untreated water into the Sutlej. They said the treatment plant was constructed by spending a lot of money under the Sutlej action plan, but questions were being raised about the efficiency of the plant.

While no official of the Sewerage and Water Treatment Board, Phillaur, was available for comments, sources in the department said the treatment plant was functioning partially and the water was not being filtered properly. Sources also said the department had a plan to release certain fishes in the plant but due to the problem of filtering the plan was not being implemented.



Rail mishap victims await compensation
Manoj Kumar
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, December 3
More than three years have passed, when 3152 Down Sealdah Express coming from Amritsar had collided with a few bogies of the 2903 Up Golden Temple Express near Khanna on November 26, 1998, but compensation cases are still pending in the courts due to delay in court decisions and the indifferent attitude of the railway authorities.

The enquires made with the subordinate officials of the Chief Claim Officer, Ms Archana Kaul, New Delhi, revealed that the Railways had already paid compensation amounting Rs 7.59 crore to the victims, but there were around 20 persons, who had not been paid the amount due to litigation in the court. The sources revealed that these families belonged to the far-flung places of UP, Bihar and other states. Some of them had failed to file compensation cases on time and the others had demanded more compensation, especially in the injury cases.

One of the officials said: “The compensation has been granted in most of the cases where the families were able to provide valid documents such as confirmed railway tickets. However, the compensation was delayed only due to lack of valid documents and court procedures.”

Interestingly, another official, on the condition of anonymity, said: “It was the callousness of the department officials that these cases have not been settled even today.

The families of victims have been shuttling in the courts and department office during all these years.” However, another official claimed that they had already deposited the compensation with the court, and it was now up to the court, when it grants compensation to them.

It is also learnt that the commission of inquiry, Khanna rail accident, Chandigarh, has also failed to submit its report. It was notified in March 1999, to probe in to any irregularities or shortcomings that led to the rail accident. Though Mr G.C. Garg, chairman of commission and his secretary, Mr R.K. Sondh were not available for comments, sources in the office said that there was no scope for the completion of the report in the near future. Mr Balwant Singh, counsel for the commission, had also submitted his resignation in October, claiming that it was a waste of public money. 



Busy time for bookies, peak hour for punters
Vimal Sumbly
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, December 3
With three Test matches in progress simultaneously, it is busy time for bookies and peak hour for punters. While Sri Lanka was playing West Indies in Colombo, on the fifth day, Australia was playing New Zealand at Perth on the fourth day and England was playing against India on the first day. As all the three matches were being telecast live and almost simultaneously bookies and punters were busy surfing channels and putting stakes that varied from match to match.

All three matches began today with the draw as the favourite result for everyone. However, it was the match between Sri Lanka and West Indies, which took a turn in favour of Lankans due to sudden collapse of the top West Indian batting order. While stakes were being placed reluctantly for Sri Lanka as favourites against a draw, the dismissal of Lara in the pre-lunch session instantly short Lankans as favourites. Sri Lanka won the match by 10 wickets.

Sources among the bookies and punters revealed that a number of people putting bets had increased manifold in the current cricket season. “Name any leading businessman, he may have placed a bet here or there”, revealed a punter, while adding, some may be doing it for fun, most of them have made it almost a full time business.

Bookies’ and punters’ job has been made easy with the live telecast of the matches and the availability of the mobile phones. Since the punters (who place bets) get regular update, ball to ball, by way of watching, they do not take much time in placing the bets on their own predictions. Interestingly enough for the punters, all three matches were being aired by various channels. Otherwise, the bookies and punters have to use Internet or leased telephone lines to get regular update, which is necessary as the stakes keep on changing.

Australia, which is playing against New Zealand, were 69 for 2. They have eight wickets in hand for chasing a target of 440. This game is said to be “still open”, with some people putting their stakes for a draw. “The game can take any turn as Australia can win the match if they play fast. It can collapse also leading to New Zealand victory or it can end up in a draw”, pointed out a punter, while adding, “anything can happen in this game” with one full day to go. Even if there are rains, match is likely to end in a draw.

The match between India and England, which began with “draw” as the favourite result, ended with India as the favourites at the close of the day today. Since England were all out for 238, India became favourites, although they have already lost one wicket. The match can take several turns during the course of four days’ play.

While earlier, the total betting amount in Ludhiana was put around a few crores, it is said to have now crossed to several crores with more and more people getting involved in betting. Ludhiana is one of the important betting centres in the region. Other centres include Jalandhar, Ferozepore and Jammu. This is described as the peak betting season with so many Test matches in progress simultaneously.



Punjab seeks 700 cr to clear paddy payments
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, December 3
Procurement agencies of Punjab are yet to make payments for paddy procured worth over Rs 500 crore from arhtias and farmers.

The total procurement in the state this year was more than 100 lakh tonnes. According to official information available here, the payments pertain to the procurement by the state agencies only and the Food Corporation of India has cleared all dues. The Punjab Food Supplies Department alone has to make payments to the arhtias and farmers worth over Rs 250 crore.

Enquiries reveal that the Reserve Bank of India (RBI) had sanctioned a cash credit limit (CCL) worth Rs 6200 crore for the procurement of paddy which has already been received and distributed among the different agencies.

Sources say the procuring agencies were trying to make the payment to the arhtias and farmers in a bid to stop any anti-government propaganda as the paddy procurement had been smooth this year.

When contacted, Mr P. Ram, Secretary, Food Supplies Department, Punjab Government, told that the payments worth about Rs 600 crore were still to be paid to the arhtias and the farmers. Mr Ram said the state government had approached the RBI and sought another sum of Rs 700 crore to wipe out the arrears of the payment. He was confident that the RBI would clear this limit soon and the payment to the farmers would be made immediately.

He said the payment for the levy rice to the rice millers was being made regularly and the backlog was being cleared.



Morcha to give call to defeat corrupt leaders
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, December 3
The Pancthic Morcha conference at Ludhiana on December 9 will give a call to people to defeat the corrupt, dishonest and anti-Panthic politicians in the ensuing assembly elections in Punjab.

Stating this, Mr Gurcharan Singh Tohra, president Sarb Hind Shiromani Akali Dal and Baba Sarbjot Singh Bedi, convener, Panthic Morcha said preparations for the conference were in full swing and it would prove to the last nail in the coffin of the SAD-BJP government led by Mr Parkash Singh Badal.

They said the maximum damage had been done to the Sikh traditions under the leadership of Mr Badal and all traditions had been broken by him to please his bosses in Delhi. The highest temporal seat of the Sikhs — Akal Takht — had been denigrated.

Father, the sacrilege by the followers of Baba Piara Singh Bhaniarawale had been committed under SAD rule in the state.

They further charged that the latest incident of sacrilege took place on Gurpurab at Surewala village in the Lambi Vidhan Sabha constitueny of the Chief Minister.

The police had hushed up the incident, by saying that the fire was caused by a candle. They said Mr Baldev Singh Sibia, former president, SGPC, had submitted the report to the Panthic Morcha.

Both Mr Tohra and Baba Bedi said Punjab had become bankrupt as a result of the policies adopted by the SAD-BJP government.

The condition of the poor had worsened and the backdone of Punjab’s economy —the farming community — had also been broken.

They also lashed out at the Chief Minister for not making any law which could punish the followers of Baba Bhaniarawale for the sacrilege.

They ruled out the possibility of any unity with the SAD and said that the election campaign of the morcha would be launched on December 9.



For Avtar disability is no hindrance 
Shivani Bhakoo

Ludhiana, December 3
He may not have two arms, yet he is not handicapped. Though God may have been unkind to him, he does not blame Him. Despite his physical disability, Avtar Singh Randhawa is a happy and satisfied man. He operates a public call office literally with his two feet. He believes: “If you want to keep away the sorrows, of life, you will have to be an independent person. Whatever you can do for yourself, nobody else does”. And he has been successful in his belief.

“Why should I consider myself unlucky? I am financially independent and have a small and loving family. What else could anyone desire for?” asks Avtar, an arts graduate from Government College for Boys. He is running a PCO at Jalandhar bypass near here.

Avtar may not have both his arms but he can write, play marbles and cards, change his clothes and eat his food with help of his feet. “Parents were worried about me. They did not allow me to study. But once, I saw two-three children going to school, I followed them and asked the teacher that I also wanted to study. Although the teacher refused, I was not discouraged. Next year again I went to the teacher and expressed my desire to study. The teacher not only agreed to give me admission but the entire fees was paid by the school”, said Avtar.

34-year old Avtar completed his graduation with the help of funds raised by Red Cross, Lakshmi Ladies Club and Lions Club for his studies. His life took a new turn when he tied the nuptial knot with Navinder Kaur, a post graduate in Punjabi and a former journalist with a Punjabi Daily “Navan Zamana”. “We got married in the year 1996 and have a three-year old daughter Achanchet, who is absolutely normal”, said Avtar.

Interestingly, Navinder, his wife had come to take his interview for her paper. While she was interviewing him, she said that she wanted to marry him. Avtar was shocked for sometime. “She did not tell her parents about her wish. But she told them that she would marry a person of her choice”, maintained Avtar.

The parents of Navinder were present on the wedding unaware of the fact that their daughter was going to be married to a “disabled” person. By the time they came to know, they were shocked. But the marriage had already been solemnised. The parents were not on talking terms with their daughter for over three months. Avtar’s wife has left the job but she runs her own PCO at their residence. She looks after her husband and daughter and leads a contented life.

Avtar is a good singer too. One of his audio cassettes “Baahvaan hundiyan kalavein bhar dinda” has already been released. Now he is working on his other cassette which will shortly be released. He has also given public performance in America with the help of some NRI friends.

His parents had turned him out of their house in 1997 as they were not happy that their “dependent” son who had married a girl who was not only normal but financially independent also. Today, Avtar has his own house and is living happily with his small loving family.

Avtar said that nobody in the world can do anything for someone. “If you want to succeed in life, you have to be independent. You should not grumble and crib all the time over the things which are beyond your reach”, is Avtar’s message on World Disabled Day, to his friends who are physically challenged like him. 



Shopkeepers divided over traffic diversion
Vimal Sumbly
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, December 3
Shopkeepers of Ghumar Mandi seem to be divided over the diversion of traffic in the area to alternate routes. While most of the shopkeepers are supportive of the diversions, some shopkeepers along the National Road are opposing it. They shut down their shutters today to protest the diversion.

Mr Babu Ram Kashyap, president of one section of shopkeepers’ association and general secretary of the District Congress Committee (Ludhiana urban) has welcomed the diversion of traffic. He said the diversion would prevent the congestion of traffic in the market. He pointed out, all through the day, the traffic remained blocked on the road between main market and the Arti Cinema crossing.

He pointed out that due to the traffic congestion in the market most of the customers preferred to stay away from the market which adversely hit their business. Besides, he added, this had come as a great relief to the customers and the general public as they could move along the road conveniently and comfortably. “Even you could not walk on foot along this road”, he disclosed. He said after the traffic was diverted and made only one way, there are no traffic jams and blockades. He regretted that some shopkeepers were opposing the diversion move for petty interests.

However, some shopkeepers who had downed their shutters to protest the one-way traffic system claimed that this had severely hit their business. A shopkeeper said: “Ever since the traffic police introduced one-way traffic, our business has been hit several times. We are not having any customers”.

He pointed out: “Why should the customers come to us after covering such a long distance, as it is one way on this side”.

Some shopkeepers on the National Road itself, where the shutters were downed, admitted that the diversion of traffic was necessary to maintain the smooth flow of traffic, particularly during the peak hours. One shopkeeper said: “For sometime this may effect the business, but once the system gets streamlined it would be normal”. He added: “There is one-way traffic even in Chaura Bazaar and still people do brisk business there as it makes hardly any difference.

Officials in the local administration, however, maintained that the decision was taken in the public interest. An official pointed out, barring a few shopkeepers, everybody hailed the decision as this had led to smooth flow of traffic along the busy Ghumar Mandi road, particularly during the peak hours.



NCP district unit dissolved, leadership at loggerheads
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, December 3
In a piquant situation, the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP), headed by Mr Sharad Pawar, which is yet to stand at a firm footing in Punjab, finds itself strife-ridden as the Assembly elections are round the corner.

In a dramatic development, the state president of the party, Mr Swarn Singh, has announced that the district unit of the party stood dissolved while a defiant district president, Mr Rashpal Singh Gill, throwing an open challenge to the leadership, has nominated new office-bearers and has also invited applications from party activists to contest Assembly elections.

In a press note, the state president of the NCP said the district unit had ceased to exist and it would be reorganised to make it more effective for the ensuing Assembly elections. He further said the party would contest 45 Assembly seats in Punjab and talks were on to have an electoral adjustment with the Punjab Lok Manch, a conglomerate of parties, comprising the Akali Dal (Democratic), the Marxist Communist Party of India, the Republican Party of India, the Socialist Samajwadi Party, the Forward Block, the Samajwadi Party and the Janata Dal.

According to Mr Swarn Singh, prominent party leaders, including its national president, Mr Sharad Pawar, and Mr P.A. Sangama would shortly visit the state to canvass support for party candidates and address party rallies at Ludhiana, Patiala, Jalandhar, Mansa and Hoshiarpur.

In total disregard for the state leadership, the NCP district chief, Mr Gill, has maintained that the party will contest all urban and rural seats in the coming elections and has further called applications from party workers for this purpose. He further said Mr Darshan Singh Kutbewal was nominated as the party candidate to contest from the Dakha (reserve) Assembly segment.

Ironically, he made an appeal to all party workers to sink their differences and work unitedly to prepare for the electoral battle ahead.

Meanwhile, Mr Ramesh K. Nanchahal, claiming to be Chief Public Relations Officer of the party, today termed the decision of the state party chief to dissolve the district unit as ‘absurd and hasty’.

He said the unconstitutional step taken by the party president particularly when the Assembly elections were close, would lead to frustration and dampen the morale of the party workers, which in turn would adversely affect the prospects of the NCP in the coming elections.

He further said the detailed report of the situation had been sent to the party high command. 



J&K ultras smuggling weapons into Punjab
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, December 3
A number of terrorist outfits in Jammu and Kashmir are smuggling weapons into Punjab and targeting noted criminals. The noted criminals are either indulging in major crime activities in the state or are functioning as carriers of the smuggled weapons into neighbouring states.

Highly-placed police sources disclosed that the investigation into the activities of Avtar Singh, alias Tarri and his namesake, has revealed the disturbing phenomenon. The terrorist outfits are mainly using those criminals who had some kind of association with the former terrorist groups in Punjab.

The two noted criminals, one Avtar Singh belonging to Patiala district and the second belonging to Ludhiana, were recently arrested by the local police in different operations. A number of weapons, including AK-47 and AK-56, have been recovered from thier possession.

The sources said further investigation had established a link between them and Jammu and Kashmir terrorists. He said the role of J&K terrorists has been limited to supplying the weapons only.

According to the police, the J&K terrorists are maintaining links mainly with former terrorists who are indulging in criminal activities in the state, which resulted rise in contract killings and robberies. 



Grant cheques to be given on December 5
Our Correspondent

Sahnewal, December 3
Cheques for development purposes shall be issued by the Deputy Commissioner, Ludhiana, Mr S.K. Sandhu, and the Technical Education Minister, Punjab, Mr Jagdish Singh Garcha on December 5.

In a press note issued by Mr Tejinder Singh Sahnewal, president SAD(B) Urban and Mr Ajit Singh Batra, press secretary, it was said all gram panchayats, nagar panchayats, registered clubs, mahila mandals and 31 wards of the corporation under Ludhiana (Urban ) shall collect at Tifco resorts on Wednesday under the presidentship of Mr Sharanjit Singh Dhillon, senior Akali leader and Director (Markfed), Punjab.

The councillors of various development committees and welfare committees shall also be present. Mr Charanjit Singh Atwal, Speaker, Punjab Vidhan Sabha will also attend it.



Lecture series at R&D Centre
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, December 3
A technical awareness lecture series has been started by the R&D Centre for Bicycle and Sewing Machine, Ludhiana.

The first lecture of this series was held on “Role of fasteners in engineering industry” at the centre recently.

Mr M.P. Jain, chairman, Fastener Association of India, inaugurated the seminar and explained the role of fasteners to the participants. Mr B.M. Gupta, an expert, explained in detail about the manufacturing process involved, to the technical students and the supervisory staff from the industry.

An exhibition on different types of nuts, bolts and various fasteners were organised by four leading fastener manufacturers of Ludhiana.

Mr B.S. Sangha, General Manager of the R&D Centre, thanked the participants and assured to conduct such series of lectures in future regularly to prepare students for placement in industrial organisations and to enhance the employment opportunities for its passing out students.



Phone security system launched
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, December 3
Neha Telecom Linkers, a leading telecom and electronic products company, has launched a multi security system, in collaboration with R.S. Technologies, Hyderabad.

The system costing about Rs 18,000 can be operated through telephone lines, besides having a facility of alarm rings on selected phone numbers in case of breaking of the security network. It can also help operate electronic appliances through telephone dialling. The company claims that it is the first system introduced in the region, which could be operated through telephone connections.



Octroi staff adjusted
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, December 3
In pursuance to the state government’s decision to provide alternative posting to civic employees working in the octroi wing, the Municipal Corporation here today issued posting orders for 334 members of the supervisory staff, clerks, Class IV employees and drivers of the Octroi Department.

According to Mr R.L. Kalsia, Commissioner, after the abolition of octroi, 13 superintendents, 38 inspectors, 169 clerks, 99 peon and 15 drivers had become surplus. All these employees had been adjusted in the four zones to strengthen the working of the zones. The Tehbazari branch had also been strengthened. It would now function zonewise under one superintendent with 3 inspectors for each zone. 



Sumo hits car, case registered
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, December 3
The Division Number 5 police station has registered a case under Sections 279 and 427 of the IPC against driver of a Tata Sumo (PB-11-N-1723), who hit a car in front of a college on Monday and fled the scene.

According to a complaint lodged by Mr Sanjiv Jain, a resident of Maya Nagar, his car was hit by the vehicle as a result of which it was badly damaged.

Four booked

The Sarabha Nagar police recovered Rs 210 and a pack of playing cards on Monday from Tirath, Kulu, Adarsh Rai and Ajay Kumar while they were gambling.The accused, who have been booked under Sections 13,3 and 67 of the Gambling Act, were apprehended during special checking in Shaheed Bhagat Singh Nagar.


A man was seriously injured in a clash and admitted to the Civil Hospital, Khanna. The police has registered a case at Sahnewal police station.

Three held

The Sidhwan police arrested Kulwant Singh of New Salempura and seized 100 kg of ‘lahan’ from his possession. In another incident, the police arrested Pritam Singh of Bhaini Araian, near Sidhwanbet Chowk, and seized 50 kg of ‘lahan’ from him. Cases under Sections 61, 1 and 14 of the Excise Act have been registered against them. The Dakha police arrested Boota Singh of Kawanwali village, falling under the Fazilka police station, and seized 181-75 litre of illicit liquor from his possession. 



Knitwear industry plea to Centre
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, December 3
Associations of the knitwear industry has urged the Centre to take steps to prepare the industry for the quota-free regime after 2005.

A meeting was held here yesterday between the Federation of Knitwear, Textile and Allied Industries Associations (FEKTAA) and Mr S.K. Tuteja, Development Commissioner (SSI), Ministry of Small-Scale Agro and Rural Industries.

In his address of welcome, Mr Vinod Thapar, president, FEKTAA, said the Ludhiana knitwear cluster had tremendous potential in export and employment generation. The units were already providing employment to about 4 lakh employees directly or indirectly. He praised the role of UNIDO in facilitating cluster growth over the past four years, but also emphasised that the cluster development programme should continue for another three years to reach the potential.

Dr M.A. Zahir, Dean, College of Basic Sciences, Punjab Agricultural University ( PAU), presented the VISION-2005 for the knitwear cluster of Ludhiana. He said that despite its traditional advantage of availability of trained labour and monopoly in domestic winter knitwear market. But despite these advantages the cluster was facing certain threats from WTO, which could lead to higher sickness level and loss of employment. Moreover too much dependence on imported yarn and technology may prove harmful for the industry.

He pointed out that total world knitwear market was around $ 100 billion and domestic market was to the tune of $ 9 billion. The domestic branded segment was growing at 20 per cent rate. Further, there was a huge potential in technical textiles, which was already worth $ 60 billion, but city entrepreneurs had failed to make a dent in the market.

Dr Zahir asserted that the industry could grow at 20 per cent annual rate provided specific interventions were made by the state, Centre and industry. The requirements for this success includes ‘Made in Ludhiana’ brand, investment in R & D, HRD, strategic planning, linkages and consolidation of capacities.

The speakers said the UNIDO intervention has already benefited about 150 units, resulting in savings of about Rs 6 crore, increase in exports by Rs 15 crore, investment by Rs 60 crore and training and employment to near 250 women.

Mr Tuteja assured the participants that the department would try to provide all possible help. Among other who present on the occasion were Ms Anita Das, Mr J.S.Kullar, Director, SISI, Mr R.P. Malik, DGM, SIDBI, Mr Rajat Sood, Ms Mridula Jain, Mr Ashok Jain, Mr V.P. Chopra, Mr Brahmdutt Sharda, Mr Ram Krishan, Mr Prem Sagar Jain and Mr Deepak Arora.



Humour adds to ad appeal
Asha Ahuja

Ludhiana, December 3
Advertisements are becoming more and more aggressive as competition among the makers of various products is increasing. According to a survey, TV advertisements with an element of humour have more effect on the viewers. An advertisement that has been liked greatly is the one in which a beau brings flowers for his lady love, but due to a faulty switch, he get a shock. By the time the girl opens the door, the boy is almost unconscious and the beautiful flowers have turned into dry stems. The advertisement promotes a certain brand of electric switches.

Another advertisement that has been found interesting revolves around Hritik Roshan who is forced to halt in a small village. Surprisingly, when Hritik asks them to sing a song, they break into ‘Kaho na pyar hai’. He joins them in the dance and is surprised when one of them advises him to join films.

People like humour and advertisement film makers keep this in mind. The appeal of such an advertisement increases immensely when an important personalities is associated with it. Amitabh Bachchan signs the bills of almost every diner in a restaurant because he likes the pen.

Sachin Tendulkar hits the ball high up in the air and a voice yells ‘Sachin my shopping’. Sachin drives away and returns from the shopping before the fielder is able to lay his hands on the ball. Then Sachin, like a naughty boy, makes a noise and the catch is dropped.

No doubt humour in advertisements is on the rise. 


Home | Punjab | Haryana | Jammu & Kashmir | Himachal Pradesh | Regional Briefs | Nation | Editorial |
Business | Sport | World | Mailbag | In Spotlight | Chandigarh Tribune | Ludhiana Tribune
50 years of Independence | Tercentenary Celebrations |
121 Years of Trust | Calendar | Weather | Archive | Subscribe | Suggestion | E-mail |