Saturday, October 5, 2002, Chandigarh, India


L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Create parking spots or face action, 
shop owners told
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, October 4
The district administration to take action against the owners of commercial complexes and shops on the Mall Road, who have failed to provide proper parking for their clients, spaces leading to traffic chaos on the road.

The administration has written to the owners of various commercial complexes owners to create parking spaces within a month’s time or show cause explaining why their shops should not be closed down. These complexes have failed to provide proper parking space despite showing the parking area to the competent authority at the time of sanctioning of the construction plans and obtaining a no objection certificate.

Mr Anurag Aggarwal, Deputy Commissioner, said that the conditional order under Section 133(1) Cr PC have been issued to all shopkeepers of the Mall Road, who have not provided adequate parking space for their customers, resulting in blockade of half of the Mall Road as parking lot, creating hindrance in the traffic movement, endangering public safety and hence a threat to human life.

He said that the Mall, once known as calm and serene road, primarily a residential area has been turned into a traffic bottleneck due to unplanned, unwarranted multistorey commercial complexes coming up on a large stretch of the road. The customers are forced to park their two-wheelers and four-wheelers on the road due to lack of any parking provision and encroachments by the showrooms on Mall Road.

The DC further said that there were shops without any parking space and many vehicles were seen parked on the both sides of the road during any time. He said that some such unplanned shopping complex did have some parking space in their basements but it was not utilised for this purpose, but was being exploited commercially. Mr Aggarwal said that with heavy traffic congestion on the road schoolchildren and other pedestrians found their way through the parked vehicles with difficulty.

The Deputy Commissioner also said that with new apartments coming up on the road situation was going to worsen and there was a constant threat to a public safety. He said that the Mall Road, which had a high volume of traffic and was one of the busiest road of Ludhiana had been commercialised indiscriminately without any thought or planning.

The Mall Road, once a haven for the walkers, had thus, become an accident prone area and a source of public inconvenience and nuisance due to unplanned mushrooming of these commercial complexes, he added. He informed that the Municipal Corporation Ludhiana had also been told to ensure that no new complex was approved without getting an NOC from the district administration.



BKU flying squads to ensure MSP
Party demands for Rs 100 bonus per quintal
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, October 4
The BKU has decided to set up flying squads which will visit all purchase centres and mandis in order to make sure that paddy growers were paid the minimum support price (MSP) fixed by the Union Government.

Giving this information, the BKU president, Mr Ajmer Singh Lakhowal, informed that all district units of the body had been directed to immediately form the flying squads and effectively deal with the exploitation of farmers at the hands of traders. Activists of BKU had also been asked to protest wherever instances of distress sale of paddy would be noticed. “The farmers should also come forward and intimate their respective district units of the BKU if they are forced to sell their produce below the MSP.”

Mr Lakhowal further observed that the Punjab Government decision to pay an additional Rs 20 per quintal over and above the MSP for paddy was far too inadequate and the farmers would not, in any manner, be benefited. This meagre hike had also been rejected by the farm experts for the simple reason that this was more a political ploy than any real intention to help the farmers. He said due to drought-like conditions and acute scarcity of power, the paddy growers had to spend between Rs 4000 and Rs 5000 per acre extra to save their crops and an increase of just Rs 20 per quintal would not be sufficient even to offset the hike in the prices of diesel, fertilisers, insecticides, pesticides and other farm inputs.

The BKU chief reiterated the demand for announcement of MSP of all crops before the sowing season which would put an end to the exploitation of farmers and distress sale. “For instance, the sugarcane crop is almost ready to be harvested but the government is still to announce the purchase price.” He also drew the attention of the government towards arrears of more than Rs 80 crore, which have not been paid to sugarcane growers by sugar mills from the previous crop.

Mr Lakhowal asked the government to implement the principle of fixing purchase price of farm produce on the basis of price index, according to which the MSP of sugarcane worked out to be Rs 143 per quintal, cotton and oilseeds Rs 3,250 per quintal and pulses and oilseeds Rs 2,860 per quintal. He also urged the government to grant a bonus of at least Rs 100 per quintal on paddy.



Despite all odds, she moves on
Lovleen Bains

Doraha, October 4
Life seems to be an endless march to Seema, who is determined to carve a niche for herself.

Despite adverse family circumstances, she has been able to make herself economically independent, apart from caring for her bed-ridden father and providing education to her six brothers and sisters.

Always dressed in a shirt and trousers, Seema impresses those she meets by her determination, courage and confidence.

“We become what our thoughts make us. Never has the thought of being a girl, or being vulnerable, entered my mind. Had I been a boy, I would not have been any better,” says Seema.

Unlike other girls of her age, who are entirely dependent upon their parents, Seema has never looked towards her parents for assistance. Her father used to have a good business, but due to unfavourable circumstances, a stage came when the family found it difficult to make both ends meet.

At that time , Seema was a school- going child. Refusing to be bogged down by the situation, she waged a war against the vagaries of hard luck.

As of now, her day starts at 4 am. After the daily chores, she collects newspapers from a local news agency and distributes them in the town. It takes around two hours. From 6.30 am to 8 am, she goes to a playground for her regular practice of athletics. She attends her college from 9.40 am to 2.20 pm and returns home for a quick lunch as she has to return to the playground for her practice till 5 pm. Then, till late, she manages a small shop near a railway crossing on the Doraha-Neelon road.

Having undertaken the demanding task of supporting her family, Seema has decided to remain single throughout her life. “I regard my determination as my life partner and younger brothers and sisters as my children,” she says. Her siblings are studying in various classes.

Her father, failing to recover from the accidental shock, has been addicted to drinking. “My mother provides me the moral support. Her consoling smile and strong heart have always enlightened my thorny path, she says.

Seema has even managed to buy a small piece of land, on which she plans to start construction after she has saved a handful of money for the purpose. For this, she is striving harder by spending more time at the shop.

Seema has maintained an excellent balance between her family responsibilities and study, along with sports. At present, she is doing her graduation in Arts from Guru Nanak National College, Doraha.

She has been doing well in academics and has proved her excellence in sports as well. She was declared the best athlete in 2001 as she stood first in 100 metres, first in 200 metres, first in 400 metres and first in 1,500-metre cycle race. She has also participated in 800 and 1,500-metre athletic events at the inter-university level.

She takes keen interest in other co-curricular activities. She has participated in various plays. She has been an Under-Officer during her NCC course of three years. She is also an NSS volunteer.

Her dream was to become a doctor, but “dreams seldom come true,” says Seema, adding that: “I have never lost heart. If not in academics, I can carve a niche for myself in sports. Never can I forget the lines of Milton in Paradise Lost — “The mind is in its own place, And in itself can make a heaven of hell, a hell of heaven...”



Surgery gives her chance to be mother again
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, October 4
Sunita (not her real name), 36, of Ludhiana, could not believe her luck when her gynaecologist told her that the “microsurgery” on her blocked tubes had been a success and she could, now, conceive again.

This delicate surgery, using high microsurgical tubal recanalisation technique, was performed by Dr Vineeta Munjal, operating gynaecologist, in Guru Teg Bahadur Hospital here recently. Dr Munjal said Sunita had secondary infertility, following surgical interruption of the tubes (tubectomy). She had been sterilised six years ago, but, now, wanted to conceive.

“Her tubes were blown up about six times the normal size under a sophisticated microscope and different layers of the tubes were meticulously dissected and identified. The transacted and patent ends of the tubes were properly aligned and microsurgical repair was performed over indigenously designed catheters, utilising fine, non-reactive threads,” said Dr Munjal.

The surgery was conducted on her right and left tubes and, the operation that lasted more than three hours, restored her tubal patency. Dr Vineeta said, in the microsurgical tubal recanalisation technique, magnified vision gave a doctor a greater chance of success. “Surgery on the tubes was, earlier, performed under direct vision, without any magnification, with a low success rate. Now, reconstructive surgery of the tubes is performed under highly magnified vision, which is painstaking, time-consuming and delicate,” she said.

Dr Munjal said the management of the tubal causes of infertility had become easy over the past 20 years. A wide range of options were, now, available, including tubal microsurgery, laparoscopic surgery and the IVF. 



‘Dowry’ death claims woman on birthday
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, October 4
A woman died in a city hospital late yesterday after her in-laws had allegedly poisoned her. The woman, Pooja, belonged to Malerkotla. Two years ago, she had married a hosiery-unit owner of Bhandari Street in Civil Lines here.

Her in-laws had, allegedly, been forcing her to bring more dowry all these years. She died late yesterday on her 24th birthday, leaving behind a 10-month-old daughter.

The Division No. 8 police has arrested four of her in-laws and registered a case under Section 304-B of the IPC against them. The accused are Pooja’s husband, Aman Tangri, father-in-law Krishan Tangri, mother-in-law Kailash Devi and sister-in-law Kajal.

The case has been registered on the statement of Usha Dhir, Pooja’s mother. She said in the FIR that Pooja’s in-laws had been constantly harassing her for dowry. “Yesterday, they gave her a heavy dose of rodent poison that caused her death,” she said.

The post-mortem examination of Pooja’s body shows that she died of poisoning.



Police station walls being used as 
advertisement boards
Jupinderjit Singh
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, October 4
Police stations or advertisement boards? The district police faces this question as a soft drink company has painted advertisements of its product on the walls of the Division No. 5 police station near Jagraon overbridge.

The advertisements not only come as a shock to visitors but is also against the recent orders issued by the district police authorities that no company could use the police station buildings for its sales promotion exercise, as it directly affects the image of the police.

Police sources said recently the district police issued verbal directions to the force that no police station or post should allow its premises to be used for such a purpose.

Several police buildings in the city, especially in the old areas, had to get the walls white washed in order to escape the authorities’ ire last month. However, the Division No. 5 police, in stark violation of the orders went ahead and allowed the advertisements.

Inquiries revealed that the issue of advertisements was highly debatable in police circles. With paucity of funds hampering regular white-washing or repairing of the police buildings, the station house officers or in charge of police posts, on their own, had got the advertisements painted.

Police sources said the painted walls gave a cleaner look to the police buildings. There was always pressure from the senior officials to keep the police stations clean. “We used to get it done from some social workers or through donations’’, said a station house officer preferring anonymity. But then there were complaints about forcible collection of money, he said. The police then found a middle path by seeking help from the private companies.

The arrangement served as a marriage of convenience for both the parties. While the cops got clean walls, the companies got space for free publicity. The companies, in fact, profited more from the arrangement. Space for advertisements is quite costly in the city at several thousand rupees per square feet.

In the case of the Division No. 5 police station, the advertisements were painted recently as no white washing had been done for a long time. Mr Shankar Dass, SHO of the police station, was not available for comments. SSP Harpreet Singh Sidhu could not be contacted as he was out of station for a meeting. Mr Arun Pal Singh, SP (Headquarter), said he was not aware of the development and would have to check up.



Women on top; why not!
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, October 4
With the inclusion of two Indian women Vidya Chhabria and Naina Lal Kidwai in the list of ‘Fortune 500 magazine’s 50 most influential women in international business, businesswomen feel that Indian women are a force to reckon with even in the global business arena. Ms Chhabria , chairperson of Jumbo group ranked 44, while Ms Kidwai, Executive Vice -chairman and CEO of HSBC Securities and Capital Markets, was number 50.

Mrs Mridula Jain, vice-chairperson of the Shawl Club and proprietor of Shingora Shawls says, “Indian women are working hard but they will be always at a disadvantage. The world does not know about us. The main culprit is our Industries department. They refuse to listen to our point of view and have no idea of running global business and have no futuristic vision.”

Mrs Rajni Bector, owner of various Cremica items to this news replied “Why not? Indian women are energetic and intelligent. I would love to be included in this list. Our company is supplying bread crumbs and liquid coatings for food products to EBI Capital Foods in the USA and supplying buns, ketchups and ice-cream toppings to Macdonald’s, but one has to be based abroad and have to go global before they can think of getting into this magazine.”

Ms Isabelle Jain, who runs a book shop, said that obviously the inclusion of names of two Indian women is a big incentive. Vidya Chhabria managed the business after her husband’s death. But it is creditable that she was able to run it well and reach the top. “I feel that the Indian women must get their company registered in New York Stock Exchange but for that one has to earn a certain limit. So the business women should go in an organised manner.”

Mrs Krishna Gupta, chairperson of Meera & Company felt that Indian women had an indomitable spirit but they did not always get the right opportunities. Ms Kidawai had her education from Harvard and these two women were exceptionally educated and hence reached the top.

A young businesswoman Bhawna Jalota also feels that Indian women can make into the international business scene as they are generally helped by their families. Indian women have the benefit of better education than their predecessors. She said,“ Only our government has to help us more in our enterprise and sky is the limit for Indian businesswomen.” 



Telecom staff stir continues
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, October 4
The indefinite hunger strike being observed by two employees of the BSNL to protest against the registration of a false FIR against some of their colleagues entered the second day today as the police was yet to quash it. The two employees, Mr Bans Raj and Mr Dwarika Prasad, are the members of the National Federation of Telecom Employees (NFTE).

While the two employees are on indefinite hunger strike, they are being supported by other colleagues who are staging dharna with them. However, the federation has not allowed the functioning of the BSNL to be effected and routine work is going on in normal course. The protesting employees said they did not want the general public to suffer for the fault of a few people only.

According to Mr Harish Khanna, the local joint secretary of the federation, the Five number division police had registered an FIR against five of their colleagues on September 28 on the false complaint of the members of a rival group belonging to the BSNL Employees Union (BUL) . The two unions were contesting against each other for representation in the BSNL management at the district level.

Mr Khanna said the elections were held on September 25 and the results were declared on September 28 and the NFTE emerged victorious. According to him, when they were celebrating their victory some members of the rival union tried to disrupt their celebrations. After some of them (the NFTE members) prevented them from disturbing the function, they reportedly lodged a false complaint with the police on the same day.

What provoked the employees was the police action. On October 1 the police picked up the son of Mr Aditya Narain Sharma, Punjab circle president of the NFTE, in place of his father, apparently to pressurise him to come to the police station. Mr Sharma, who at that time was at Chandigarh, rushed back and went to the police station division number five along with other colleagues. Surprisingly, all of them were arrested instantly, only to be released later in the day.

The NFTE members have been demanding immediate quashing of the FIR, which they said is false and baseless. They said the GM, Ludhiana district, Mr J.S. Julka, had talked to the SP, City, who had assured to look into the matter. But nothing has been done so far. On the other hand, Mr Julka told The Tribune that he was hopeful that the FIR would be quashed soon. 



Religious activities to mark Navratras
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, October 4
With the beginning of Navratras on October 7, the city is going to witness hectic religious activity, thanks to various Ramlilas and Bhagwati poojans being organised at several places.

The Ramlila at Daresi Grounds, organised by Shri Ram Lila Committee, would commence on October 7 and come to a close on October 16. Mr H.S. Sidhu, SSP, is expected to inaugurate the Dasehra function in Nauhria, while Mr S.K. Sharma, Commissioner, Municipal Corporation, will do so at Daresi Grounds in the evening.

A “Ramayana gyan yajna” will be held from October 5 to 15 at Shri Ram Park in Civil Lines, which will be presided over by Sant Narkewal Bedi. According to a spokesman for the Amritwani Satsang Dharamarth Trust, organisers of the programme, recitations from the Valmiki Ramayana would be held every day.

A similar yajna would be held from October 6 to 15 at Rishi Nagar on the Rajpura road by the Ram Sharnam organisation. The programme will be inaugurated on October 6 in the evening and satsangs will be held daily. The programme will conclude after the morning session on October 15.

Durga poojan will be held at the Ved Mandir in Daresi Grounds from October 7 to 13 under the supervision of Vedacharya Dandi Swami Nigam Bodh Tirath. Recitations of Durga saptshati will be done every day “kanya poojan would be done at a large scale on the occasion of Ashtami.

According to Swami Vivek Bharti, recitations from Durga Stottar will be held at Sadhu Ashram under the guidance of Mahamandleshwar Swami Ved Bharti from October 7 to 14. The holy recitations would be held every day, he said.

Navgrah recitations from Ramcharit Manas will be held at the Manas temple located on the premises of Brahmrishi Bawra Senior Secondary School in Madhopuri during the Navratras. The recitations will be held under the supervision of Swami Brahmjyoti Parivajrika. A havan-yajna would also be performed on the occasion of Navmi, said Swami Guru Priya.

An evening dedicated to Govind will be held at the Tagore Bhavan, near Radha-Krishan temple in Tagore Nagar, by Shri Radha Govind Rasik Mandal tomorrow. Kamlesh Paruthi from Delhi and Shri Rameshwar from Dehra Dun would sing hymns in praise of Lord Krishna at the programme which will start at 8 pm and conclude after midnight. Shri Shyama Shyama Sankirtan Mandal is actively engaged in the event.

Shri Shat Chandi maha-yajna and satsang would be held at K-2 Textile Colony near the Pearl Oswal chowk. The event is being jointly organised by the Avadh Nav Yuvak Sabha and the Bihar Yuva Parishad.



Jainacharya’s death anniversary observed
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, October 4
On the 48th death anniversary of Jainacharya Shri Vijay Vallabh Surishwar at Jain Sthanak in Purana Bazar here a discourse was delivered by Shri Vijay Ratnakar Suri at a large public gathering yesterday.

He said a true guru was like a gardener who nurtured his disciples like a plant, the guru also removed the shortcomings of his disciples to make them serve the society meaningfully.

Among who addressed the gathering were Shri Inderjit Vijay and Sadhvi Suvriti.

Mr Desraj Tribhuvan Kumar Jain lighted a lamp, Mr Ramesh Kumar Barad, president, Atmanand Jain Mahasabha, Mr Baldev Raj Anand, Mr Shripal Barad, Mr Deep Chand Jain, Mr Surinder Kumar and Mr Navneet Jain.

A new youth body-Vijay Vallabh Sena-was also formed on the occasion.

A similar function was held at the Vijay Vallabh Guru Mandir on the College Road in Civil Lines by the Mahavir Sewa Sansthan Trust where a holy lamp was lit by Shri Vijay Inderjit Surishwar, who is a disciple of Ratnakar Suri ji Maharaj. A kirtan was held at the culmination of an akhand jap in the evening and a langar was also organised on the occasion. Among those present were Mr Pushp Datt Jain, Mr Suresh Patni and Mr Devinder Singh.



Mini Jagannath chariot
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, October 4
As a prelude to the much-awaited Bhagwan Jagannath rath yatra on October 26, a series of prabhat pheris have been planned by the organisers.

A mini chariot, capable of negotiating the narrow lanes of the old city, has been specially built by the Bhagwan Jagannath Rath Yatra Mahotsav Committee, according to Mr Satish Gupta, president of the committee.

The chariot, which would form an integral part of the prabhat pheris which start tomorrow would be duly decorated with miniatures of Lord Jagannath to enable the residents to have a glimpse of the Lord at their doorsteps. The actual rath yatra takes place on October 26.

The first prabhat pheri of the series would be taken out in Madhopuri with the collaboration of the Hanuman Mandir, New Madhopuri, in which, apart from hymn singing, schools bands would also display their skills. Dandiya dance would be another attraction of the parbhat pheri which would be presided over by Sakshi Gopal Dassji.

Meanwhile, 15 temporary information centres concerning the shobha yatra have been opened in various parts of the city. And in order to give a final touch to the preparations for the esteemed rath yatra, a special meeting of citizens has been convened at Maharaj Palace which would be presided over by Sakshi Gopal Dassji this evening today.



Entry tax on paper opposed
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, October 4
There is widespread resentment among book publishers, manufacturers of exercise books, stationery items and packaging material over the imposition of 8 per cent entry tax on all kinds of paper.

At a representative meeting of the paper-manufacturing units and members of allied trades held at Bhadaur House here on Thursday, it was alleged that the provisions of entry tax were flawed.

Mr Jai Gopal, president, Paper Manufacturers Association, said the units located in Punjab would be at a great disadvantage against those in the neighbouring states and the fierce competition might lead to recession and closure of paper units, leading to increase in unemployment.

Further, the taxation burden on paper would also result in a spurt in the prices of books and exercise books, thereby adding to the cost of education, he said.

Mr Manmohan Singh, president, Books Market Traders Association, pointed out that the entry tax on paper would have a direct bearing on the cost of education as the prices of textbooks and exercise books were bound to go up by at least 10 per cent. 


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