Sunday, July 21, 2002, Chandigarh, India


L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


FM paints gloomy picture of Punjab finances
Government vows corrective steps
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, July 20
The state of Punjab has fallen from grace. Earlier, decorated with flattering titles like food bowl of India and the sword arm of the country, Punjab had now created an image of a 'bankrupt state' for itself and the funding agencies, both global and national, were avoiding it like plague.

These remarks were made by Mr Lal Singh, Finance, Food and Supplies Minister, Punjab, while addressing a news conference at the Municipal Corporation headquarters here today. Painting a gloomy picture of the economic scenario, he said funding agencies like World Bank, IMF, NABARD, HUDCO, Reserve bank of India and many others had slammed their doors shut for the state projects mainly due to gross financial mismanagement and economic chaos during the regime of erstwhile SAD-BJP combine in Punjab.

"The state is under a mindboggling debt burden of Rs 52,000 crore and an unprecedented resource crunch facing Punjab, we are not in a position even to pay the interest on the loans. The previous government, in a mad race for indiscriminate distribution of funds to all and sundry with political motives, had misappropriated Rs 2,400 crore from the food credit limit alone provided by the Union Government for procurement of food grain. Similarly, hundreds of crores of rupees were diverted from other heads like purchase of levy rice and central government sponsored schemes, including one for adult education."

The minister, however, assured that there was no need for despair and things would brighten up once the corrective measures being taken by the Congress government got on a firm footing. By next budget session (year 2003) there would a sea change in the economy with marked visible improvement. "The government is committed to root out corruption, provide good governance and accelerate the rate of economic growth."

When asked if the government would move ahead towards scrapping of subsidies and withdrawal of free power and water from the farming community, which was the biggest impediment in the way of funding from international agencies, Mr Lal Singh was non-committal. “We shall find a way out so as not to annoy the farmers and also to fulfill the parameters of the funding agencies,” he remarked.

The Minister, who also hold the portfolio of Food and Supplies, informed that Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh would meet the Union Food Minister, Mr Sharad Yadav, in Delhi on July 23 to present a case for action plan on diversification of crops, simplification of procedure for export of foodgrains and other related issues like payment of incidental charges for procurement, storage capacity and movement of food grain.

In the wake of reports of pilferage and rotting of grains, the government, he added, had ordered a spot physical verification of the entire stock of wheat, paddy and rice by committees of SDMs and officials of procurement or storage agencies at the subdivisional level. The Deputy Commissioners and District Managers of procurement agencies would supervise the exercise which would finish by July 27 and a comprehensive report submitted to the government by July 31. He made it clear that those found guilty, irrespective of the rank or position, would not spared.

Mr Lal Singh further claimed that milling of paddy at the rice sellers was almost 97 per cent complete by July 31, which was fixed as the deadline for this purpose, around 99 per cent milling would be over.



CBI begins probe into Dhakki Sahib row
Jupinderjit Singh
Tribune News Service

Dhakki Sahib, July 20
Six months after the Punjab and Haryana High Court ordered a CBI inquiry into the alleged false implication of the Dhakki Sahib sant and several of his followers allegedly at the behest of the former SAD-BJP government in the state, CBI sleuths today finally started probe into the matter.

The sleuths collected documents related to the case from the Khanna police in the morning and activists of the Ludhiana-based International Human Rights Organisation (IHRO), and had a lengthy meeting with the Dhakki Sahib sant and his followers at their dera near Maqsoodan village in the late afternoon.

While the CBI sleuths refused to meet any mediaperson, sources in the Khanna police, sevadars at the dera and Mr M. S. Grewal, president, IHRO, confirmed the starting of the CBI inquiry.

The CBI move assumes significance in the light of the prevailing political situation in Punjab. The former SAD-BJP government was accused of doing its best to avoid a CBI inquiry into the case as two Akali ministers and some of the their relatives were the main accused in the case.

The initiation of the CBI inquiry comes almost 14 months after the Punjab Human Rights Commission (PHRC) had in its Full Bench order directed the Punjab Government to hold a CBI inquiry into the case as the allegations of political victimisation of the sant and his followers were found true in an inquiry by ADGP A. P. Bhatnagar.

The inquiry had stated that Sant Dhakki Sahib and his followers were booked in several cases because of their proximity to former Akal Takht Jathedar Bhai Ranjit Singh and the President, SHSAD, Mr G. S. Tohra. Due to their closeness to these leaders, the Shiromani Akali Dal led by Mr Parkash Singh Badal used a land dispute case of the sant’s dera and residents of Maqsoodan village and forced the sant and his followers to move out.

The PHRC inquiry and another probe by the International Human Rights Organisation of Ludhiana had singled out Mr Jagdish Singh Garcha and Mr Sadhu Singh Ghutani, former Akali ministers, for victimising the sant and his followers. The government buckling under pressure later booked Mr Garcha’s sister along with several other residents of Maqsoodan village for attacking the Dera and burning of Sikh scriptures. Mr Garcha’s sister is still at large and has been declared a proclaimed offender in the case.

The recommendation of a CBI inquiry by the PHRC came on April 30, 2001. The government, however, refused to entertain it. The IHRO then moved the High Court contending that what was the use of the commission if the government does not follow its recommendation. The High Court upheld the petition and order the CBI inquiry on January 17, this year.



Patient’s kin stage dharna
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 20
Tension gripped a city hospital today afternoon following the staging of a dharna outside it by a number of women belonging to Mullanpur Dakha. The women were accusing the hospital authorities of causing a male relative’s death due to negligence. Heavy presence of the police, however, prevented the case from taking an ugly turn.

Later, the women lifted the dharna on their own claiming that they neither wanted money nor registration of a case against the doctors or authorities of Sigma Heart Care Centre and had only assembled here to demand an assurance from the hospital authorities that they will take utmost care in future.

The women were agitated at the death of a 42-year-old man, Jagjit Singh, who had died at the hospital on July 2. His mother, Darshan Kaur, and wife Santosh Kaur alleged to mediapersons that the victim had undergone a bypass heart surgery and was recovering when he suddenly died after an injection administered to him reacted.

Dr Amardeep Singh , one of the three Directors of the hospital denied the charges outrightly. He said the hospital takes complete care of each and every patient and there was no negligence in any case.

He said success and failure were part of the medical profession and the doctors always tried their best to save a life. He said the protesters had some other motive as they had come and staged a dharna 18 days after the patient’s death.

The Division No. 5 police, which had rushed to the hospital remained stationed there for about three hours to avoid any untoward incident.

The police arranged a face-to-face meeting of the aggrieved relatives and the doctors. Mediapersons were also present in the meeting. Both the parties argued on different points and tried to convince each other.

The matter ended when the relatives of the deceased made it clear that they had no lure for money or desire to register a complaint with the police. They said they just wanted an assurance from the hospital authorities that such negligence would not happen again.



DMC sets up ad hoc panel
Legal aid assured to arrested employees
Tribune Reporters

Ludhiana, July 20
Assuring all legal aid to the innocent employees who are behind bars, the president of the Dayanand Medical College Managing Society, Mr Brij Mohan Lall Munjal, today announced the constitution of an ad hoc committee to supervise the functioning of the college and the hospital. He also declared that there would be no interference in the day-to-day functioning of the hospital.

Addressing a press conference here today, Mr Munjal declared in no ambiguous terms that there would be no interference in the day-to-day functioning of the hospital by the managing committee and the Principal. The Medical Superintendent and the Director (in case of Hero Heart Centre) will have full authority to perform their job independently, he said.

The six-member ad hoc committee, includes Mr Balraj Kumar Verma, Mr Gian Chand Dhawan, Mr Satish Sanwalka, Mr Sunil Kant Munjal, Mr Prem Gupta and Mr Amrit Nagpal. The meetings of the committee would be presided over by Mr Balraj Kumar Verma in the absence of Mr Munjal.

Making a passionate appeal to the employees and the doctors, Mr Munjal assured that there would be no vindictiveness and victimisation by anyone, including the police. He sought to allay the fears that the police was still on the look out of employees. In fact he disclosed that he had been assured by the district administration that all those employees who are detained but are found innocent would be released.

The noted industrialist maintained that the management was also ready to provide all sort of legal aid to the employees in case the need be. However, about the employees to be found responsible for the trouble, he said, the law will take its own course.

Regretting the July 13 incident, Mr Munjal said, the issues at stake were too trivial and internal (to the DMC). “None of these issues have direct relations with the service conditions of the employees or with the efficiency of the hospital’s working”, he said, while adding that after meeting a large section of employees and the faculty, “there was a general feedback that we need to strengthen the management of the DMCH”.

Acknowledging and appreciating the role and contribution of Mr Prem Nath Gupta in the development of the DMC into such a big institution he said, “such institutions are not built unless someone puts in his best”. About his resignation he said, Mr Gupta had wanted to relinquish the post about a year back and again wanted to quit about six months ago.

Mr Munjal said, members of the managing society, including Mr Amrit Nagpal, Mr Satish Sawanlka, Mr Prem Gupta, Mr Bector, Mr Balraj Kumar, Mr Gian Chand Dhawan along with Dr S. C. Ahuja had visited the jail and met the employees. The members had assured them that they would do anything and everything including providing legal assistance, if required, and will leave no stone unturned. He said, the administration had also assured them that there would be no harassment to anyone.



‘Amnesty International collecting evidence’
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, July 20
The Faculty of Dayanand Medical College and Hospital (DMCH) has asked that if the administration claims that no one had died in the melee on July 13, was it not their responsibility to produce the person?

In a meeting held at old DMC today, the doctors said Amnesty International had established contact with them through its London office. A case has been registered against the police and district administration by an unidentified caller based in London. The Amnesty International was collecting evidence for making the case and would then be approaching officials at all administrative levels, including the Prime Minister of India, Chief Justice of India, the Chief Minister of Punjab to secure justice for the employees.

The general body of the faculty reiterated unanimously that the District Administration and the police were hiding the legal formalities, and they should be questioned about that.

If so many innocents had to suffer and were then booked for having injured a policeman, how many cases had been registered or action taken against the police personnel for having mercilessly beaten the innocent people?

“Why should a case not be made against the SDM who had booked four senior doctors and an Army Colonel who was an administrator in DMCH and had sent them to lock-up along with criminals instead of following the protocol of first determining the facilities they were actually entitled to?, asked faculty members.

If this was what happen to an Army Colonel in the state that was governed by an ex-Lieutenant-General and was under the Chief-Ministership of an ex-Army Captain, then what would be the fate of a common man?

Members of the nursing staff also addressed the faculty meeting. They described the tales suffered by the nursing employees and stated that most employees were still on the roads and could not think of returning to their homes for fear of victimisation by the police. The police, including both male and female constables, had poured water on the locked-up employees and then beaten them up. After a while, the police personnel left for their homes, only to return later freshened up, in their night clothes. They were allegedly drunk at this time and then beat the locked up girls throughout the night. All those in lock up were made to sign blank papers. When one of them refused to sign the papers, she was taken to a compound for a fresh round of beating. Another girl was beaten up by a leather belt that was fixed to a leather motor. She became unconscious, while several policemen announced that they were watching a snake dance. Fortunately for her, the power failed at that time and her torture stopped.

The general body confirmed that all ad-hoc employees were also a part of their agitation and assured them that they would be supported in any event.

Meanwhile, in order to support the ongoing agitation of the employees of DMCH and to condemn the brutal act of the police and administration towards the employees, the volunteers of more than 40 organisations held a rally at Chatar Singh Park here today.



Gosain flays DMCH lathi charge
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 20
A former Deputy Speaker of the Punjab Vidhan Sabha, Mr Sat Pal Gosain, has condemned the cane charge on employees of the DMCH and has blamed the administration, the police and the management for the lapses which had led to the violence.

In a statement here today, he said the employees were tortured and terrorised while in police custody and even women were not spared. He has demanded action against the officials responsible for the alleged inhuman treatment.

Mr Gosain further added that he along with Jathedar Tirath Singh were not allowed to meet the detained employees in the jail and was allegedly manhandled by the staff. A similar treatment was meted out to them in the women jail.

He has demanded immediate cancellation of the cases against the employees and urged the authorities to get the institution back on rails for the benefit of hundreds of patients of the region.



Farmers pay for following advice
Kanchan Vasdev
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 20
In a strange twist of fate, farmers in the district who had cultivated advance varieties of paddy, contrary to experts’ advice, are having lesser chances of failure of the crop due to scanty rainfall in the region as compared to other farmers who had sown the crop at the recommended time.

While the state government and the Agricultural Department had launched the campaign to discourage the farmers to cultivate advance crop, besides delaying the canal water supply, the farmers who had followed their advice are actually suffering at the hands of the fate. Their crop, which is at a tender stage, is facing damage due to inadequate water.

Farmers said their counterparts, who had cultivated early varieties of paddy, were in a better position as their crops were wilting due to want of water.

The state government and experts had in fact achieved quite a success as around 80 per cent farmers had delayed the paddy sowing. This had definitely lowered the pressure on the underground water. But with the change in scenario most of the farmers are thinking that had they also sown the crop a little early they would not have suffered such losses.

Mr Charanjit Singh and Mr Darshan Singh, both farmers of Pakhowal village, said they had gone for the early sowing anticipating that there would not be adequate power once all farmers cultivate paddy. And this proved to be a blessing for them. At least for this year the condition of their crop is far better than the others.

Mr Manjit Inder Singh, a farmer of Mandiani village, said the early sown crop was looking much healthier than the late sown crop, but he said it had mounted pressure on the underground water. He said the scenario was in no way going to affect the minds of the farmers next year who have vowed to listen to the experts’ advice.

The experts are, however, looking at the other side. They said even if the farmers had sown the crop early, the grain formation would be affected. Dr Govinder Singh Nanda, Director (Research), PAU, said every farmer was going to face losses this year unless he had devised other means of irrigation.

He said this was a crucial time for the crop as it required plenty of water. “Due to elusive monsoon and less irrigation water, the grain formation of the crop would be affected and that would take its toll on the yield of the crop. If it rains within a week or so then things can change for the better,” he said.

He said this time farmers could go in for maize, bajra and some pulses.

According to Dr Sukhdev Singh Hundal, Professor, Department of Agrometerology, PAU, there are chances of isolated showers, but monsoon is far away.

He said in June, 2001, 221 mm of rain was experienced. This year in June only 36 mm of rain was experienced and in July only 29 mm.

Rain in District

Year Till June 30 Till July 16
2001 221 mm 355 mm
2002 36 mm 29mm



Smooth election to MC committees
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, July 20
Contrary to all speculations and unlike the election of the City Mayor and his deputies, which was fiercely contested by the ruling Congress and the SAD-BJP led combined opposition, the four members, two each for the Finance and Contracts Committee (F&CC) and the House Tax Committee of the Municipal Corporation, were elected unanimously in a smooth manner.

A former Senior Deputy Mayor and a veteran Congress councillor, Mr Surjit Singh Ahluwalia, and Mr Hakam Singh Giaspura of Shiromani Akali Dal (Badal) were elected members of the F&CC while Mr Hem Raj Aggarwal of the Congress and Mr Rajiv Katna of Bhartiya Janata Party made it to the House Tax Committee. Punjab Finance, Food and Supplies Minister Lal Singh, who is also incharge of the party affairs for this district, attended the general House meeting of the MC held here today to elect the members of the two House Committees. Others present at the meeting occasion were Mr Gurcharan Singh Ghalib, MP, Minister of State for Printing and Stationery Mr Rakesh Panday, Mr Harnam Das Johar, Mr Surinder Dawar,Mr Malkiat Singh Dakha, Mr Malkiat Singh Beermi and Mr Amrik Singh Dhillon, all Congress legislators.

Since the ruling Congress had failed to finalise the party candidates for these posts before hand, around 30 councillors, most of them from the ruling party had filed their nomination papers with a hope that their candidature might get a nod from the party high command. However, this morning Mr Lal Singh convened a meeting of the party councillors, which was attended by party legislators and other local leaders in which a consensus over the party nominees was evolved. As a result, all the contenders submitted their withdrawal forms to the minister so that only the official candidates remained in fray. The SAD-BJP combine, enjoying the support of some other smaller groups also undertook a similar exercise.

In pursuance of the High Court orders to hold elections for all posts in the civic body through secret ballot, the MC administration had made all necessary arrangements for polling. As the meeting was called to order by the city Mayor, Mr Nahar Singh Gill, the MC Commissioner, Mr S.K. Sharma, announced that all other contestants having withdrawn their name, the four councillors, two from Congress, one from SAD-B and one from the BJP were declared elected unanimously. Although the Congress enjoyed a comfortable majority in the MC with 37 councillors in the 70-member house, in addition to the five party legislators, who also had the right to vote, in the face of a united and cohesive opposition, led by SAD-BJP combine, the ruling party had to concede one seat in each of the two committees to the opposition as the second preference votes would have fallen short of the required number.



Appeasing rain gods with rituals
D.B. Chopra

Ahmedgarh, July 20
Last evening, a little away from this town, along the railway tracks near Khera village, a small, festive but solemn gathering of rural folk performed a ritual which the children , and most of the adults present , were witnessing for the first time.

The villagers marched in a little procession to the open site and amid rituals meant to appease Lord Indra, the god of rain set a rag-doll ablaze at sunset and then the women went ahead with the preparation of food from the stuff contributed by the villagers . The food was distributed among the gathering comprising mainly women and children. But till morning today, there was no sign of any clouds.

Bizarre though it may seem to the scientific mind , burning a doll made of rags at an open place may or may not attract rain, but the revival of the ancient practice has perhaps been necessitated as a last resort to get the much-needed rain. Though rain has sporadically lashed some towns and cities in the state, the town and its surrounding areas are yet to have the current monsoon’s first rainfall.

It was on the advice of some elders that womenfolk took to doll-burning in Barundi, Latala and some other villages in the past week or so. Not to mention the several ‘bhandaras’ and ‘yajnas’ which are, being held all over the area for the past fortnight or so. There are reports of special ‘namaj’ being offered in the nearby town of Malerkotla to pray for an early rain. Recitations of various scriptures are going on in temples and prayers are being offered in gurdwaras to the Almighty to save the people from the current drought -like conditions.

Elders say they do not remember having witnessed such weather for the past several years.

The ‘garmi’, they say, has exceeded all limits. The erratic behaviour of the monsoon, which until two weeks ago had puzzled everyone, is now causing worry to one and all. Gone are the days when it rained simultaneously from Lahore to Delhi during the rainy season.

If the current trend of sporadic rainfall continues throughout the season and in the years to come, the Punjab would be on its way to becoming a desert, they opine. They feel the scientists should find out the factors responsible for an erratic monsoon and suggest ways to remove the same.



Man of infectious ebullience

Ebullient by nature, Jagdev Singh Jassowal is still the same as he was in his childhood. He is impulsive, curious, eager, restless and ambitious. The sky is the limit for his soaring desires and expectations. He wants to have his cake and eat it too. He is forever in search of such occasions as can focus the attention of the people on him. He is the natural leader of men and his benevolence endears him to one and all. Instead of exploiting others, he likes to be exploited by them. The main reason is that he is happy in the happiness of the persons around him. For him the more the merrier. The show must go on and at any cost. At times he uses others but not for his personal motives. He has grander designs like the chandeliers hanging under a canopy, fluorescent lights, cacophony, hustle and bustle, melodies tunes and rhythmic steps delight this heart. He is the man of the masses. More so, he is the man of the soil.

He was born on April 30, 1935, at Jassowal (Ludhiana). He received his postgraduate education at Government College, Ludhiana, and Mahendra College, Patiala. Later, he got his LL.B. degree from Aligarh University. From 1980 to 1985 he was an MLA and in that capacity held the post of Chairman, Punjab Forest Corporation and Punjab Dairy Development Corporation. During his political career, he worked as General Secretary, Akali Dal, as well as Vice-President, Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee. He had also been the President of the august Sikh body, Guru Gobind Singh Foundation.

During the past two decades he has been acting as the centripetal force to bring together all that is best in the culture of this land of five rivers. During this period his concept of identifying the birthday of Prof Mohan Singh with the cultural mela has taken firm roots. The folk songs, folk dances, folk tales and folklore are now holding sway over the minds of the people. Out of these currents and cross-currents has emerged a figure that is fully conscious of the aspirations of the common folk.

In this fast-changing world, the people can find their roots by identifying themselves with their cultural moorings. The common man is feeling nostalgic about his lost identity and craves for the fulfilment of his primordial desires. With this end in view Jagdev Singh Jassowal has strained his nerves to bring about cultural renaissance in Punjab. Being a true Punjabi, he is cosmopolitan in his outlook and has established the World Punjabi Cultural Manch. Endearingly he is called the roving ambassador of Punjabi culture.

However, at this stage of his life, he is facing some health problems which he tends to ignore. The other day some literary figures like Prof J.S. Bedi (Chandigarh), Prof Kulwant Jagraon and Dr Gurdev Singh Pandohal went to his residence to enquire about his health. He pretended to be cheerful but at heart he was sad. The reason being, in the words of Majaz Lucknavi :

Sab ka to garebaan see dala

Apna hi garebaan bhul gaya

(We took pains to mend the torn garments of others, but forget to take care of our own.)




NGOs to get better representation
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 20
With a view to further accelerating welfare activities, a state-level social security advisory committee will be reconstituted in which those NGOs, which have an outstanding track record of social service, will be given proper representation, says Chaudhary Santokh Singh, Social Security and Women and Children Development Minister.

He was in the city today to attend a function to inaugurate a newly set up Senior Citizens’ Day Care Centre by the Social Welfare Charitable Society, Ludhiana.

The Minister said the centre has been set up in a palatial building donated by noted philanthropists Dr Inderjit Singh Mangat and Dr Kartar Kaur Mangat in which 50 senior citizens have been enrolled who would be provided with recreation activities, library facilities, lunch, tea two times a day besides timely medical treatment. This is the first such centre to be set up in the state, he pointed out.

He appreciated the initiative taken by the society and said that such people should expand their area of service so that more people could avail the benefit. He lamented that our social set up was getting deteriorated day by day and a large number of evils like intoxicant, drug abuse, dowry, over population and disrespect to the seniors were on the rise.

More NGOs should come forward in strengthening our traditional, cultural bonds and principles so that a harmonious society was carved out where our aged parents could get proper respect and care. He informed that the government would also review the working of the NGOs who had taken grants from the Central Government and so that the genuine ones should be further encouraged.

He added that our senior citizens were the honour and valuable property of our society and we all should extend due respect and affection towards them, he stressed.

Chaudhary Santokh Singh said that the state government was providing pensions to 10 lakh people out of which eight lakh are aged. He assured that the old age pensions in the state would be continued and the undeserving names would be deleted after scrutiny. He also announced a grant of Rs 25, 000 from his discretionary quota for the society.

Earlier, addressing the function, Mr D.R. Bhatti, ADGP, stressed upon the need to involve more and more NGOs in the social service programmes, as these are giving excellent results. He informed that the police department had involved many NGOs in tackling the traffic problem, minimising drug abuse by setting up of de-addiction centres where a large number of youth had been benefited .

Dr P.S. Jassi, consultant, UNICEF, demanded the setting up of a state-level social security committee involving the representatives of the reputed NGOs.

Dr Inderjit Singh, who donated the building of his nursing home for setting up the senior citizen centre, also spoke on the occasion.

Mr Gursharanjit Singh also addressed function.



IHRO to take up SYL issue
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 20
The International Human Rights Organisation (IHRO) at a meeting here on Thursday decided to take up the Sutlej Yamuna Link (SYL) canal issue. It sought the co-operation of all Punjab political parties and non-party groups, including human rights organisations, to take care that not a single drop of Punjab rivers’ water flows beyond the state’s border.

Presided over by Chairperson D.S. Gill, the meeting urged the Punjab Chief Minister to rescind all “illegal” agreements on river waters, including the Rajiv-Longowal accord, as ultra vires of the Constitution of India, the riparian law and national and international laws, before going to the Supreme Court for a writ petition.



Man cheated of Rs 2.5 lakh
Our Correspondent

Doraha, July 20
A man was allegedly cheated of property worth Rs 2.50 lakh. According to Sukhdev Singh, son of Piara Singh of Jarg village, he purchased a piece of land for Rs 2.50 lakh from Surinder Singh of the same village but the latter after taking the sum, refused to hand over the registration papers. A case under Section 420 of the IPC has been registered.

Man beaten up: A case under Sections 342, 323 and 34 of the IPC has been registered on the complaint of Manpreet Singh of Bhadewal. He was allegedly attacked and injured by Bachittar Singh, Tar Singh, Rampartap and Kashmira Singh as a result of which he had to be hospitalised at the Civil Hospital, Payal.

Case registered:
The local police on the statement of Rachpal Singh, alias Hali, registered a case under Sections 324/323/34, IPC, against Shinda of Chattian Kalan, Moga Sadar police station, Naranjan Singh and Paljit Singh of Lahorian mohalla, Moga, for causing injuries to Rachpal Singh. According to the complainant, he was coming with Jasbir Singh, alias Seera, to nanaksar when Shinda and Naranjan singh who were on a scooter (No PB 05 1479) while the other was on another scooter (unnumbered) being driven by Daljit Singh. Both were armed with weapons. They caused injuries to the complainant. Old pending criminal litigation is alleged to be cause of the dispute.

One booked:
The Focal Point police has booked Manjit Jat, a resident of Dhandari Kalan, under Sections 341 and 420 of the IPC on the statement of Mr Harjinder Singh, in charge of Sherpur police post. According to the FIR, the accused had been intercepting riders without helmets on two wheelers in the area and extorting money from them.

Injured: The Basti Jodhewal police yesterday registered a case under Sections 374, 373, 380 and 34 of the IPC on the statement of Mr Nand Lal, a resident of Iqbal Nagar, against Joginder Singh, a resident of Satkar Nagar, Harbhajan Singh and an unknown woman accompanying them. According to the complainant, the accused had injured him in an attack and had robbed Rs 8,500 from him. No arrest has been made so far.

Forcible possession alleged: The division number 7 police yesterday registered a case under Sections 348 and 506 of the IPC on the statement of Mr Saroop Singh, a resident of New Bhagwan Nagar, Jodhewal, against Harjit Singh, a resident of the same village. The complainant had alleged that on July 15, the accused had broken into his shop and taken forcible possession of the shop. The accused had also threatened him of dire consequences, he added. No arrest has been made so far. Beating alleged

The Sadar police yesterday registered a case under Sections 323, 324, 506 and 34 of the IPC on the statement of Mr Tarsem Singh, a resident of Jhanol village, against Kulwinder Singh and two of his cronies who had allegedly beat up the complainant and threatened to kill him. No arrest has been made so far.

Breach of trust alleged: The Sadar police yesterday registered a case under Section 406 of the IPC on the statement of Mr Amarpal Singh, a resident of Jassowal village against Rajdeep Singh, a resident of Chaoke village in Bathinda district. The complainant had alleged that the accused had borrowed his car (PB10 AB 8082) for some time but had not returned the vehicle.

Theft: The Sadar police has registered a case under Sections 454 and 380 of the IPC on the statement of Mr Pardeep Singh, a resident of Shahid Karnail Singh Nagar, against unknown person (s). They had allegedly broken into his house and decamped with Rs 8,000. 



Student’s death: teacher arrested
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, July 20
Inderpal Kaur, the teacher whose punishment allegedly caused the death of Jagroop Singh, a student of Government Senior Secondary School, Pakhowal, and who was booked under Section 327, 338 and 304 of the IPC, was today arrested by the police and produced in the court of Mr H.S. Grewal, Judicial Magistrate. The Judge remanded her in judicial custody till August 3.

According to the police, Jagroop Singh had died on July 12 and a post-mortem examination was conducted on his body.



2 landlords booked
Our Correspondent

Mandi Gobindgarh, July 20
The local police has booked two landlords for failing to provide the whereabouts of their tenants to the police, according to SHO Harinder Singh, here today.

Police sources said Kamlesh Kumar, a resident of street no. 11, Gandhi Nagar, and Ravi Kumar a resident of street no. 8, Dashmesh Colony, had failed to get their 16 and six tenants, respectively, registered with the police station.



Entry of pvt insurance cos favoured
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, July 20
The majority of Ludhianvis have favoured the entry of private companies in the insurance sector. Better functioning, quick procedure and lesser formalities is what is expected of such companies.

These are the findings of a research study ‘Attitude of people towards privatisation of insurance sector’ conducted by Preeti Hiro, an MBA student of the Punjab College of Technical Education under the guidance of Ms Mandeep Sodhi, a faculty member.

The study revealed that out of 85 per cent respondents who were surveyed, 81 per cent believed that they would be getting better services and more options to invest once the private players enter the insurance sector. It was found that 17 per cent of the respondents were not even aware of the proposal to allow private companies to venture into this trade.

It showed that 80 per cent of the respondents were already holding life insurance and non-life policies. While public sector was favoured on accounts of returns and trust, private sector was perceived to be better for its quick procedure and lesser formalities. It was suggested that while private sector companies should launch more aggressive campaigns and try to enhance their credibility, public sector should try to do away with bulky procedures.


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