Thursday, May 2, 2002, Chandigarh, India

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Railway engine catches fire
Villagers prevent major tragedy
Mullanpur (Ludhiana), May 1
Alertness of a driver and presence of mind shown by several villagers prevented a major tragedy, early this morning, when the engine of a passenger train caught fire near this village. The engine of the Ludhiana-Fazilka train was completely burnt. No one was injured.
A Railway employee inspects the burnt engine Fire Brigade staff make a last-minute inspection
A Railway employee inspects the burnt engine of the Ludhiana-Fazilka passenger train (and right) Fire Brigade staff make a last-minute inspection of the burnt engine on Wednesday morning near Mullanpur. —Tribune photographs

Traffic regulation plan enforced in city
Ludhiana, May 1
The traffic regulation plan enforced in certain city areas on experimental basis during the past two weeks in the wake of ongoing construction work for the ‘Elevated Road’ Project and the flyover to replace the Lakkar Pul, has been implemented with certain modifications with effect from tomorrow.


Jewellery seized from Dhira’s locker
Ludhiana, May 1
The Vigilance Bureau seized 84.5 ‘tolas’ of gold jewellery valued at about Rs 4.5 lakh from a locker of Randhir Singh Gill ‘Dhira’, alleged tout of Ravi Sidhu, tainted Chairman of the Punjab Public Service Commission, here today. The locker was in a branch of Punjab and Sind Bank opposite Verka Milk Plant. The sleuths did not find anything else of significance there. The bureau has also recommended that a case under the Excise Act be registered against Randhir Singh for possessing foreign liquor brands.
SCALE OF CORRUPTION: Vigilance sleuths weigh gold jewellery seized from a locker of Randhir Singh Dhira, alleged tout of tainted Chairman of the Punjab Public Service Commission, Ravi Sidhu, while Dhira’s wife Rajwinder Kaur wears a sombre look. — Photo Pradeep Tewari

Examiners in fast-check mode; God help students
Ludhiana, May 1
After students finish their examinations, they begin praying: “God, let the examiner be in a good mood.” Teachers cannot possibly be in a good mood when they have 60 answer-sheets to mark in three sessions every day — 8 am to 11 am, 11 am to 1 pm and 2 pm to 5 pm. If one takes out 60 minutes for lunch and tea, there are only 8 hours left to mark 60 papers, which gives an average of 8 minutes per paper.

Entry tax, not octroi: traders
Mandi Gobindgarh, May 1
“The Punjab Government has not properly represented the case for the abolition of octroi in towns of the state in the Punjab and Haryana High Court,” said Mr O.P. Gupta, president of the Mandi Gobindgarh unit of the Punjab Beopar Mandal, at a press conference here on Tuesday.


Cong promises welfare measures for workers
Ludhiana, May 1
The Congress today promised massive welfare measures for the workers. Addressing a May Day function here today, the Congress leaders said that the party was committed to the welfare of the labour and the working class and assured that the interests of the workers would be protected.

Cong meeting to select candidates begins
Ludhiana, May 1
A meeting of the selection committee of the Congress began here today under the chairmanship of Mr Gurcharan Singh Ghalib, MP. A central observer and senior Congress leader from Himachal Pradesh, Mr Ram Lal Thakur, also attended the meeting.

Labour unions demand action against corrupt ministers
Ludhiana, May 1
It was more of rhetoric against corruption and communalism than the concern for the labour issues that marked the May Day function organised by various Left-affiliated trade and labour unions here today. And probably it was for the first time in recent years that such issues dominated the May Day function. Most of the trade union leaders, who addressed workers’ rallies, condemned the corruption during Badal regime and the communal violence in Gujarat.
 They are at Labour Chowk, Ludhiana, as usual, with hardly a reason to celebrate
WHERE WERE YOU ON MAY DAY: They are at Labour Chowk, Ludhiana, as usual, with hardly a reason to celebrate. — A Tribune photograph

Know thyself first, says Swamiji
Ludhiana, May 1
“Vedanta is the philosophy of vedas and is science of making life. It says that one should lead a life with discrimination and understanding and not based on impulses. One should also understand that it is he who himself has to live his own life and none other can live his or her life and so life should be based on self-reliance. 

Gosain raps govt on octroi
Ludhiana, May 1
Senior Bharatiya Janata Party leader and former Deputy Speaker of the Punjab Assembly Satpal Gosain today rapped the Congress Government in Punjab for its approach on the issue of octroi. He alleged that the government did not defend the decision in the court which led to its reimposition.


3 hurt in mishap 
Sahnewal, May 1
Three people were injured when the auto-rickshaw they were travelling in was hit by a tanker (PB10A-9792) being driven by Raj Kumar near Sahnewal, on Monday night. The injured are Ashok Kumar of Una, Deepak of Ludhiana and Harbhajan Singh of Ramgarh village. 

Abducted minor girl traced
Mandi Gobindgarh, May 1
The police claims to have recovered a minor girl, Poonam, daughter of Mr Ravi Kumar Sharma, on Tuesday night from Delhi and got her examined in the Civil Hospital here on Wednesday. She was abducted on April 24.


Industry unhappy over decision on octroi
Ludhiana, May 1
While the officials and workers of the municipal corporations and committees are celebrating the decision of the Punjab and Haryana High Court to quash the order of the SAD—BJP government to abolish octroi duty in the state, just few days before the announcement of elections, the traders and industrialists seem to have been caught off guard by this decision. 

Recession clouds travellers’ plans
Ludhiana, May 1
With summer vacations just round the corner several city residents are planning to visit different exotic locations, but continuing recession is bound to hamper their plans. Travel agencies are complaining of getting very few enquiries due to the recession. 



220 students receive prizes
Ludhiana, May 1
Students and staff of the Guru Nanak Institute of Management and Technology, Gujarkhan Campus, Model Town, celebrated its second annual prize distribution function here today. Students were given prizes for their performance in academics, sports and cultural activities. Nearly 200 students were given prizes.


BSNL ordered to pay compensation
Ludhiana, May 1
The District Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum has directed Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) to pay Rs 4,000 as compensation on account of deficient services, to Mr Prabh Dial Ahuja, resident of Sector-39, Urban Estate. 



‘Don’t withdraw from drug addicts’
Ludhiana, May 1
“Drug addiction is a disease. It does not affect only an individual, but his entire family gets affected. Later, its effect can be seen on entire society. People should treat it as any other disease”, said Mr Sarabjit Singh, director of Social and Health Directorate functioning under the aegis of the Guru Gobind Singh Study Circle, an NGO.

Awareness programme on eye care
Ludhiana, May 1
A social awareness programme on eye care has been launched for school students and old people by Ottica, an Italian company. The programme includes free regular eye check up in schools and old-age homes where the students and old people are checked for myopia, hypermetropia, squint, cataract and other vision related problems.

Free medical check-up camp
Ludhiana, May 1
Over 1,050 patients were examined by a team of doctors at a free medical check-up camp organised by Bhagwan Ram Charitable Hospital here today. Dr Ramesh Thakur, Medical Superintendent, BRCH, in a press statement said that patients with gynae, skin, ear, nose, throat, skin and eye problems were examined.


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