Saturday, April 20, 2002, Chandigarh, India


L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


MC draws alternative traffic routes 
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, April 19
While giving effect to the proposed ban on plying of all kinds of motor vehicles on the stretch of Old GT Road between Jagraon Bridge and Chand Cinema as a traffic regulation measure due to ongoing work for the Elevated Road project, the Municipal Corporation has drawn up alternative routes for vehicular traffic for various inward and outward directions.

According to a tentative plan, chalked out by the MC authorities, in consultation with traffic consultants and city traffic police officials, effective from April 20, the portion of National Highway between Mata Rani Chowk and Sabzi Mandi Chowk will be closed to all kind of motor vehicles except two-wheelers and bicycles while there will be a complete ban on plying of trucks and buses between Jagraon Bridge and Budha Nullah bridge.

Giving details of the alternative route plan, the MC Additional Commissioner, Mr S.K. Sharma, told Ludhiana Tribune that heavy vehicles would take the bypass between Sherpur Chowk and Dr Ambedkar Chowk for movement towards Ambala and Jalandhar side. Vehicular traffic on Ferozepore — Jalandhar section would be diverted through Jagraon Bridge, Vishwakarma Chowk, Dholewal, Samrala Chowk and Dr Ambedkar Chowk. The traffic between Malerkotla — Jalandhar section will move from Gill Chowk, Dholewal, Samrala Chowk and Dr Ambedkar Chowk.

Mr Sharma further said that the section of Old GT Road between Jagraon Bridge to Sabzi mandi would be out of bounds for buses round the clock. While the MC intended to shift the private buses operating from Bhadaur House to some alternative site near Chand Cinema, the night bus service, operating from outside the Railway Station, would be routed through Jagraon Bridge, Bharat Nagar, Fountain Chowk, Session Courts, Domoria Pul, Sabzi Mandi Chowk and Dr Ambedkar Chowk.

With the restrictions coming in force, the routes for auto-rickshaws and mini buses, operating within the city would also be modified. According to Mr Sharma, three-wheelers and mini buses coming from Vishwakarma Chowk and Ferozepore Road side towards Clock Tower Chowk would terminate their trips at Lakshmi Cinema Chowk while those entering from Jalandhar bypass side would be restricted up to Chand Cinema. Private cars and other personal vehicles coming from Chand Cinema side towards Chaura Bazaar would take a detour through Old Sabzi Mandi, Deepak Cinema, Lakkar Pul, Clock Tower and further MC Multi-Storey Parking Complex via Niggar Mandi lane, which would be declared a one-way road.

To facilitate the movement of public towards Clock Tower and Railway Station, the MC would deploy four mini buses, which would continue to ply between Chand Cinema and Railway Station from Civil Lines side.

Mr Sharma made it clear that the alternative traffic management plan was purely tentative and was open to suggestions both by the elected representatives and by the members of public. The underlying intention of the MC, he added, was to regulate the flow of traffic during the construction work on the National Highway and to save the public from harassment.



PTU cancels distance education centre
Our Correspondent

Ahmedgarh, April 19
Punjab Technical University (PTU), Jalandhar, has cancelled its existing distance education centre at Ahmedgarh and has appointed the High Tech Computer Centre as its authorised online study centre.

According to Mr Avtar Singh, Senior Assistant, Distance Education Department, the university authorities had been receiving complaints against Mr Hardip Bagga and Ms Simran Bagga who had been running the local Bagga Computer Centre. University authorities investigated the matter and found that more than 150 rural students had been deprived of their right to acquire computer education as per university policies.

It was found that the centre had been charging extra fee from students. Rs 1.93 lakh were collected from students in the name of library fee, but no extra books were purchased. Though the university expects the centre to devote extra time and provide the internet facility free of cost to the students, the centre charged Rs 400 to 600 per extra hour every month and Rs 50 per hour for the Internet service.

After establishing charges, Mr A.S. Grewal Director (out reach ) wrote to the university franchise, M/S Quest Infosys Private Limited, to cancel the centre and arrange to open a new centre so that students did not suffer. He sent a (PTU) team to take possession of articles belonging to the university and hand over the same to the High Tech Computer Centre.

When the university team was stopped by men engaged by the centre, the team took the help of local police which had already registered a case under section 406 of the IPC against Mr Hardip Bagga and Ms Simran Bagga.

University authorities stated that an amount of around Rs 12 lakh was yet to be paid by the centre to the university. The centre had collected that amount in cash from students, although the fees should have been paid directly to the university by demand drafts. No arrest has been made so far. Mr Hardeep Bagga and Ms Simran Bagga were not available for comments.

It is first such cancellation after the formation of the present state government and the second in all. A centre at Batala was cancelled for similar reasons a few months earlier.



Too many entrance tests confuse students 
Deepkamal Kaur

Ludhiana, April 19
The decision of various universities of Punjab to conduct separate tests for entrance to engineering courses has caused a confusion among students here.

While earlier it was decided that the universities of Punjab would conduct a common entrance test by rotation every year, this year the authorities of Punjab Technical University, Guru Nanak Dev University and Panjab University have decided to hold separate tests. The students complained that how they would have to buy separate admission forms, pay examination fee to different universities and appear for multiple tests for getting admission to engineering colleges in Punjab.

Even the parents of the students are unhappy with the decision. Most of them said it would lead to stress among their wards, add to the financial burden and cause wastage of time and money in appearing for different tests. They said while the CBSE was trying to reduce multiplicity of tests by holding a common test for admission to colleges of different states, the universities of Punjab seemed to be going in the opposite direction, probably in a bid to earn profits.

The CBSE will hold entrance test to engineering, pharmacy and architecture courses on May 19 which will entitle admission to the Thapar Institute, Patiala, and Punjab Engineering College, Chandigarh. Panjab University will conduct entrance test to Bachelor of Engineering in agro-processing technology, bio-technology, chemical engineering, micro-element engineering, software engineering and telecommunication and information technology on May 22, besides holding tests for MBBS, BAMS, BHMS, B.Pharma and BSc (honours). Guru Nanak Dev University will conduct entrance test for BTech courses in computer science, electrical and communication engineering, textile chemicals, food technology, urban and regional planning on May 24. Punjab Technical University is likely to hold examination for BE, BTech and archaeology courses on June 2.

While the CBSE is charging Rs 350 for admission form and entrance fee, both Panjab University and Punjab Technical University have levied Rs 1,300 each for the form and fee. Guru Nanak Dev University has charged Rs 500 for the form, but it has not yet declared the amount of examination fee.

Sumit Chadha, who has just appeared in Class XII examination, said he had already spent over Rs 3,000 in buying admission forms and paying examination fees for entrance tests conducted by PU, GND University and PTU. He said he did not want to let go any chance of admission and, therefore, had no alternative but to apply for entrance tests through all universities.

Ravneet Aujla, also applying for entrance tests to engineering courses, said the process had become too cumbersome. She said she had to keep a track of notices of all the universities, stand in queues for buying admission forms, then fill and submit these. She said now she would have to take care that she got admit cards from all universities in time. Mr Hari Kant Duggal, owner of a coaching centre in Bharat Nagar, said conducting separate tests for engineering courses would cause harassment, to the students and put additional financial burden on the parents.



15 cattle, 6 mares die
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 19
Tragedy struck a cattle farmer in Lalton village last night when 15 head of cattle and six mares belonging to him died within a few minutes after eating green fodder on which, it is suspected, some insecticide had been sprayed.

The fodder had incidentally come from the farms of an industrialist from whom the farmer had been taking it regularly for the past one year. The farmer suffered a loss of lakhs of rupees in the incident.

Kasim Amir, the shocked farmer, said he fed the fodder to the animals last night and saw them dying within minutes after wriggling in pain for some moment. He said the animals were healthy.

A team of veterinary doctors from Punjab Agricultural University along with some doctors from Jalandhar and local hospitals visited the village today and collected samples of the fodder.

The post-mortem examination of the animals was conducted in the village veterinary hospital. Sources said the symptoms suggested that the animals had consumed some poisonous substance.

For final verdict, the viscera of the animals has been sent for chemical examination to Patiala.

The Sadar police has registered a case into the incident and was conducted investigations. According to the police, the farmer does not suspect anyone.



Family exasperated as CBI fails to submit report
Tribune News Service

Wadla (Ludhiana), April 19
The hopes of an aggrieved family of this village from a CBI inquiry into the mysterious disappearance of their son, Chamkaur Singh, from the custody of the Sudhar police in 1991, have diminished to a large extent as the investigating agency has not submitted the report within the stipulated period of six months earmarked by the Punjab and Haryana High Court in July, 2001. Although over six months have passed since the expiry of the time-bound inquiry, the agency was yet to submit the report.

The delay has once again hit the hopes of the family. They have been making unsuccessful rounds of the police, civil administration, politicians and human right activists all these years either to request their help or to depose before some inquiry officer. After a long legal battle, the family had, at last, seen a ray of hope when the Punjab and Haryana High Court directed the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) to complete the investigation within six months and submit the report.

Mr Jasbir Singh, brother of the disappeared youth, said, “My father, Harbachan Singh, and mother, Nachinder Kaur, are perplexed on what to do now. They plan to visit Chandigarh next week to inquire.” He feared that the old vicious circle of making rounds of government offices would start again, he added.

He disclosed that in October, 2001, some CBI sleuths had come and recorded their statements. They made two or three more visits, but then no one returned. The family, however, was satisfied with the way the CBI sleuths were investigating and said they were only concerned about the delay. “We are apprehensive that the inquiry may be lost mid-way,” he said.

Recalling their jubiliation nine months ago, Jasbir Singh said the orders of the CBI inquiry had definitely provided them with a new ray of hope, but we were at the same time unsure whether the question mark over the whereabouts of our son would be removed any day. But now, our worst fears are coming true”.

The question mark over their son's fate stares at their face since April 17, 1991, when their son, Chamkaur Singh, a suspected terrorist, had surrendered before the Sudhar police through a mediator. That was the last day they had seen him. Since then it had become a daily routine with them to knock the door of someone in the administration to know the whereabouts of their son.

His father had in his statement to the police claimed that the police had told them that he would be released after 10 to 15 days. He said that they kept visiting police stations of Wadla and Sudhar, but could not know anything about their son's whereabouts. Then they made a request to the then DSP Harnek Singh who told that their son has been sent to the Sudhar police station after the interrogation.

His father said when their village panchayat met SHO Shamsher Singh of the Sudhar police, he said the interrogation was not over yet. For months they heard no news about their son. Ultimately, they went to the khula darbar of the Deputy Commissioner, Ludhiana, who ordered an inquiry against the police officials concerned. The SDM, Jagraon, was asked to inquire into the case. 



Fast cars, catchy slogans

Besides writing surnames or catchy slogans on vehicles, youngsters in the city have started writing extracts from popular musical numbers and poetry on their vehicles now to stand out in the crowd. Some people have painted the doors of the cars with paintings. This is especially true in case of young boys trying to attract the attention of the opposite sex.

These boys spend a lot of money trying to make their vehicles look different. They argue that since we dress up differently everyday, our vehicles should also wear a different look. Disco lights, high-pitch music systems screens and sheets, stickers, radial tyres, yanky seat covers, the list of fashionable accessories used in vehicles is endless.

Some guys call it part of their style. Some clearly admit that they are doing this to become the centre of attraction. While some say that they have great regard for poetry and write the excerpts of poems and songs to give due respect to the poet or lyricist. One such excerpt of a song commonly used by youngsters these days is, “Pippal utte bulbul baithi, dana khandi chhalli da, mainu leh chal gaddi wallya, jee nahi lagda kalli da!”

Young boys try to make a statement by writing, ‘It’s my style’, ‘Just do it’ ‘Catch me if you can’, ‘No girlfriends, no tensions’. Some feel proud to be a Jatt, as they boldy write their surnames ‘Sandhu’, ‘Gill’ or ‘Jatt in mood’, ‘Jatt risky after whisky’, ‘Putt jattan de’, ‘Punjabi munde’.

At the back of autos one usually finds, ‘Chunnu Munnu de papa di Gaddi’, ‘Papa ghar jaldi aana, ‘Deepe di gaddi’, Chal rani tera rabb rakha, and many more such funny wordings which we come across everyday. Sometimes we find good quotes like, ‘Mehnat hamari, rehmat khuda ki’.

We also come across religious quotes like ‘Waheguru khushiyan bakshe’, ‘Jai mata di’, ‘Rabb mehar kare’. By writing such quotes the drivers feel that they are protected from the difficulties that they face on the roads.

If stuck in a traffic jam we are amused and relaxed at the same time to read, ‘Vekhi ja chedi na’ , ‘Izzat di roti khani hai tan naukri kar, muft da jhagda mol lena hai tan driveri kar’, tension lene ki cheez nahi, dene ki hai’.

Suneel, a college student, says that he had written ‘adidas’ on the boot of his car. His parents thought that he had written another brand name, but in reality his girlfriend’s name started with ‘S’ and by writing ‘adidas’, (all day I dream about ‘S’) he had mentioned her without disclosing her name. People have different reasons for writing different things. Some people feel proud to be a Capricorn or a Virgo, so they mention their star signs at the back of cars or scooters.

Gopal, a taxi driver, says he had painted his taxi with dolphins and water, as dolphins bring in good luck and he is probably getting more passengers because of these paintings.

Satwant K. Sekhon



Aujla pleads for setting up juvenile police units
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, April 19
Dr G.S. Aujla, Additional Director-General of Police and Director, Punjab Police Academy (PPA), yesterday pleaded for setting up special juvenile police units in each district and other towns. He said it would bring about a qualitative change in police treatment to juveniles and children.

He also suggested that at least one police official, who frequently dealt with juveniles or was engaged in the prevention of juveniles crimes, be specially trained and instructed and posted in each police station. Such an official could be designated as Juvenile Welfare Officer, he said.

Dr Aujla was inaugurating a two-day course on ‘Juvenile Justice’ for gazetted and non-gazetted officials at the Maharaja Ranjit Singh Punjab Police Academy, Phillaur. The aim of this course was to acquaint police officials with various crimes committed by juveniles and ways to check such crimes. The course was also aimed at creating awareness among subordinate police functionaries regarding various aspects of juveniles delinquency and related laws. A large number of gazetted and non-gazetted police officials participated in the course.

The PPA Director said the duty of police officials should be corrective and reformatory rather than punitive towards children.

On the inaugural session, the course coordinator, Mr Amarjot Singh Sidhu, Joint Director (Legal), PPA, welcomed the chief guest and the participants. Mr G.S. Sandhu, Deputy Director (Outdoor), Dr S.S. Chauhan, Deputy Director (Indoor), Mr Kamal Kumar, Deputy Director (Admn) , Dr D.J. Singh, Deputy Director (SS) and Dr (Mrs) S.K. Dhillon, SMO, were also present on the occasion.



Ludhianvis relish Raslila
A Correspondent

Members of the Bhardwaj Mandali from Brindaban Dham perform makhanchori as part of Raslila at Jai Durga Mata Mandir in Rishi Nagar on Friday.

Ludhiana, April 19
“Main nahin makhan khayo, main nahin makhan khayo” were the words by a little boy performing Kanha in the Makhanchori segment of the Raslila at Jai Durga Mata Mandir in Rishi Nagar. The eight- day-long drama based on the life of Krishna is enjoyed by the residents every evening . Due to Navratras the mandir committee has arranged for the performance of Raslila. The Krishanlila is performed in different segments in sequence from Chandrawali, Krishanawatar, Badhai by Putna, Makhanchori, Meerabai Charitra, Sudama Charitra to the killing of the Kansa.

The sets of the show in the night lights resemble Brindaban, the birthplace of Kanha. The audience relish the dialogues in the braj (the language of the Brindaban) when accompanied by the melodious bhajans expressing the mood of the different roles played by artists. Even the role of Kanha in different stages like Balkrishna, the Krishna in his teens and the mature Krishna is performed by a number of artists. The role of Kanha in the Krishnaawatar is played by Anurag and Balkrishna is performed by Monu Bhardwaj.

Originally based at Brindaban Dham the Bhardwaj Mandali constitutes 20 members, all of them are boys who perform different roles at different times. Eight of them are children and the rest are adults. “The art of Raslila is 250 to 300 years old and this Parampara is passed on from generation to generation” says Swami Chetan Swaroop Bhardwaj, the instructor in the mandali, saying their main aim is to increase the number of devotees of Thakur (Krishna). They travel to different places like Bihar, Gujarat, Bhopal, Jhansi, Calcutta and even America on invitations to perform Raslila with whole sets, dresses and accessories prepared specially at Brindaban.

This is the third generation in their family to perform outside Brindaban and they are a part of the Mandali for the last 11 years preserving the rich folk culture depicting the charitra of Lord Krishna. Raslila used to be a source of inspiration as well as entertainment in the olden days when their were no theatres and televisions. In addition to a religious purpose they are trying to preserve the importance of the folk theatres in this modern world of computers.

“We have been in this field for the last 30 years since we were kids. We studied along with this and we grew up learning the art”, said Acharya Raja, who can perform every character in Raslila. “We are getting very good response and this encourages us to perform to our best. This is the first time that all the children artists are happy being away from their homes”, said another member of the Mandali when asked about how they feel to be at Ludhiana.

The main members include Dhananya, Rajbir, Balkrishan, Bharatlal, Mukesh, Chhailbihari, Radharaman, Chetan Swaroop, Vishnu and Raju. The Bhardwaj Mandali will continue to perform in the city for another five days in the Shiv Mandir in Pavitra Nagar. 



Five cows electrocuted
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, April 19
Five cows were electrocuted in the early hours of Thursday at a dairy farm at Threeke village falling under Sadar police station.

According to a report lodged with the Sadar police by the dairy owner, Mr Harnek Singh, there are about 100 buffaloes and about 40 cows at his farm. On the night of the incident, he was sleeping near the animals when he was awakened by a commotion being caused by the dairy animals at about 1.30 am. Soon he discovered that a high tension wire passing over his dairy had fallen on the animals, killing five of his cows on the spot. Mr Harnek Singh added that in order to ward off further danger to the surviving animals, he cut off the transformer switch.

Further in his complaint, the dairy owner alleged that the cows had died due to the negligence of the electricity men. He stated that he had informed the electricity men about the impending danger some time ago and demanded an alternative.

However, in its preliminary investigation, the police found no signs of any sabotage that could have caused the high tension wire to snap. 



Man accused of beating wife
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, April 19
The Salem Tabri police has registered a case under sections 354,341,323, 509 and 506 of the IPC against a man on the complaint of his wife who alleged that he beat her up and tore her clothes in full public view on Thursday.

Ms Reena , a housewife living in Ashok Nagar, alleged that her husband, Rajesh Tiwari, intercepted her while she was going from her house to Bhaura colony on foot. Then he resorted to abusing and beating her on the road. During the beating, her clothes were also torn by the accused, she further alleged.

Booked for trespassing: The Sadar police has registered a case under Sections 323,506 and 427 of the IPC on the complaint of Ms Kamla Devi, a resident of Ayali Kalan, against Sunil Dutt, a resident of the same village. The complainant had stated that the accused forced his way into her house on Wednesday, beat her and another woman relative who was present in the house. The accused, who also broke the doors of her kitchen, fled after threatening them.

One arrested: The Division Number 3 police arrested Bakhsish Singh, an accused in a beating case, on the spot here yesterday while another accused, Harjinder, managed to escape. Mr Prem Nath, a resident of Dhokan mohalla, Fateh Ganj, had informed the police that Harjinder Singh and Bakhsish Singh, both residents of the same colony, had barged into his house and started beating him. A case under sections 452,506 and 34 of the IPC has been registered against the accused.

One booked: The Division Number 2 police has registered a case on the statement of Mr Baldev Singh, a resident of Shivaji Park, Jalandhar, under Sections 323,341 and 506 of the IPC against Rajinder Kataria, a resident of Subhani chowk area. The complainant had alleged that the accused beat him on the road over a business dispute and fled after threatening him.

Booked for beating: The Division Number 8 police has registered a case under Sections 341,506,323 and 34 of the IPC on the statement of Mr Mukesh Kumar, a resident of New Kundan Puri, against Raman, Reenu and Sat Pal. The complainant had alleged that due to some old enmity, the accused intercepted him near the Kailash cinema on Wednesday and beat him up.

Dowry case: The Salem Tabri police has registered a case of alleged harassment for dowry on the statement of Ms Sunita, a resident of Bhattian Bet village, under sections 406 and 498-A of the IPC against her husband, Ashwini Kumar, mother-in-law, Krishna, Shakuntla, Ramesh , Madhu and Dharam Pal, all residents of Dhariwal. The complainant had alleged that the accused subjected her to physical and mental harassment and demanded more dowry.

Six held:
The Sudhar police has arrested Gurmail Singh, Kala Singh s/o Nahar Singh, Kala Singh s/o Surjit Singh, Jagdev Singh, Bhola Singh and Mangat Singh, all residents of Rajoana Kalan village in a case registered under Sections 379 and 506 of the IPC on the complaint of Bhan Singh of the same village.

According to the information, Bhan Singh has taken 46 kanals of land on lease from Sawan Singh at the rate of Rs19500 per acre and was to deliver vacant possession of the land to its owner on June 18, 2002, after harvesting the crop. But all those accused along with sarpanch Rajvir Singh and Waryam Singh of the same village removed the fodder and when the complainant wanted to stop them, they threatened him. Rajvir Singh and Waryam Singh are absconding.


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