Wednesday, June 4, 2003, Chandigarh, India


L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Ex-Commissioner of MC summoned in mishap case
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, June 3
A local court has issued summons to a former Commissioner of the local Municipal Corporation Mr S.S. Sandhu (IAS), to appear in court personally on July 14 in connection with a four-year-old accident case involving him and a doctor couple of Patiala.

Mr Sandhu has been directed to face trial for allegedly causing injuries to the doctor couple, Dr Balbir Singh, head of the Department of Eyes, Rajindra Hospital, Patiala, and his wife, when a car being reportedly driven by the former hit a vehicle in which the couple was travelling in November 1999, in Ludhiana city.

It is pertinent to mention here that the couple was running from pillar to post for justice in the case. The couple was demanding action against the IAS officer, holding him responsible for the accident although the police maintained that the car was being driven by his cousin. This is reportedly the first time that the court has observed that a prima facie case is made out against the officer.

Ever since the accident Mr Sandhu was in the eye of a controversy. The complainant had also alleged that the police did not take action against him but booked another person, claiming that he was driving the vehicle, Maruti Car no: CH-01F-0330, in a rash and negligent manner.

Passing the order, Mr D.P. Singla, Judicial Magistrate (Ist Class) said: “It was the duty of the prosecution to move the present application, but it is an unfortunate event in the life of the complainant that the prosecution has come to the rescue of the real culprit to shield him from the due process of law. No doubt, the prosecution has done all these acts due to the filing of report by the concerned investigating agency, which has not investigated the case in a fair and impartial manner.”

The order observes that the complainant has brought sufficient material in the course of trial, from where the court can prima facie conclude that the person not arrayed before it is also involved in the commission of crime for which he can be tried.

Accordingly, he is ordered to be summoned for offence under Sections 279/337 of the IPC to face the trial as per process of law, says the summoning order.

An FIR was registered at Division No.5 police station, on November 28, 1999. Dr Balbir Singh specifically named S.S. Sandhu, in his supplementary statement, responsible for causing accident. But the police challaned Harpreet Singh, a cousin of the Commissioner, who is currently facing the trial alone.

According to the complainant, he had brought this vital fact to the knowledge of the higher police officials, but since the accused was an influential person, he managed to extricate himself from the case. Thereafter, he moved the High Court praying to hand over the investigation to the CBI, with the allegation that the police was trying to shield the real accused. The HC disposed off the petition with the direction to approach the trial court or to file a separate criminal complaint against the accused.

As such, the complainant got his statement recorded in the court, reiterating his allegation that the person facing the trial is not the real accused. Subsequently, he filed an application under Section 319 of the Cr.PC praying for summoning Mr Sandhu to face trial.

The Assistant Public Prosecutor vehemently opposed the application filed by the complainant with the plea that only the prosecution has right to file any such application. He argued that the application is not maintainable and liable to be dismissed. But after taking into consideration all the relevant facts, the court allowed the application filed by the complainant.



Surprise checks at health centres
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 3
Mr Anurag Verma, Deputy Commissioner, Ludhiana, today conducted surprise checks at four government health dispensaries in Threekey, Baddowal, Bhanohar and Mullanpur villages. No employee of the Health Department was found absent during the checks.

Mr Verma, along with the Civil Surgeon, Mr S. N. Tiwari and the SDM Mr M. S. Jaggi conducted the surprise check at Subsidiary Health Centre at Threekey village, where the staff was found present. He discussed the working of the health staff to check the spread of malaria and water borne diseases in the village.

The staff informed that they were educating the people regarding preventive measures and testing the blood of the patients suffering from fever to diagnose malaria cases.

The officers checked the Civil Dispensary at Baddowal village where the medical officer and other staff was present on duty.

At Baddowal dispensary, the Deputy Commissioner was made abreast of the progress of special campaigns against malaria and other diseases by the staff. It was found that the requisite literature and posters were being used to educate the people. The Deputy Commissioner expressed his concern over the lower number of OPD cases in the hospital and asked the doctors and staff to put in more efforts to enhance the OPD so that the public could take the maximum benefit of the facilities.

After that, the Deputy Commissioner checked the mini health centre at Bhanohar village, where the staff informed about the good turnout of the patients in the OPD. The staff members said that more than 60 patients availed the medical facilities from this dispensary everyday. The staff showed all records of the vaccinations and medicines which were being properly stored in the refrigerator. The Deputy Commissioner asked the staff to also keep the record of the physically and mentally-challenged persons in the villages so that they could be provided with free artificial limbs and other helping aids out of the Red Cross funds.

Finally, the Deputy Commissioner conducted checks at the mini primary health centre at Mullanpur. The staff was present on duty and the OPD was functioning below the capacity even with additional posts of specialised doctors and dentists, apart from the routine staff. Mr Verma asked the staff to enhance the output so that the maximum people could benefit from the services. He also advised the dentists to organise the maximum check up camps in the schools to diagnose dental ailments.

Later, the Deputy Commissioner inspected the office of the sub tehsil at Mullanpur and directed the revenue staff to clear the backlog of routine works relating to the revenue record including mutations.



Abolition of octroi put on hold?
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, June 3
Abolition of octroi and its replacement with local area development tax (LADT) from July 1 has been put off for all practical purposes till a sub-committee of senior government officials studied the issue afresh after visiting major cities and other small towns, both in Punjab and other adjoining states and submitted its report to the government.

This was indicated by the Punjab Local Government Minister, Choudhry Jagjit Singh, while addressing a news conference in Circuit House here today. The minister was in the city to inaugurate several development works in the city as this year was being observed as development year by the Punjab Government and the municipal corporation. The City Mayor, Mr Nahar Singh Gill, MC Commissioner, Mr S.K. Sharma, Congress legislator Malkiat Singh Dakha, District Congress Committee (Urban) president Jagmohan Sharma and PPCC Industry Cell chairman Rajinder Singh Basant were also present on the occasion.

The government had decided to scrap octroi and introduce an entry tax under the name of LADT in the state from July 1 to mop up an estimated Rs 720 crore, which would have been disbursed among the urban local bodies to compensate their loss of revenue from abolition of octroi. However, the trade and industry were vehemently opposing the levy of LADT at a uniform rate of 2 per cent, which they apprehended, would lead to rise in prices of raw materials and finished goods, besides adversely affecting the trade in the state.

Choudhry Jagjit Singh said while the government was committed to fulfill its promise of scrapping octroi, the interests of commerce and industry had also to be safeguarded at the same time. The government would not go ahead with any move that was detrimental to the trade and industrial activity and the proposal would be discussed at length on the basis of report of the sub committee.

The minister, replying to questions, justified the phased increase in water and sewerage charges. He said if the people expected high quality of civic amenities and services from the local bodies, they should be prepared to pay for them because ‘nothing comes for free’. The civic bodies need to mobilise resources to maintain the development of towns and cities, particularly for the capital intensive sewerage and water supply projects.

On the doubts over quality of work of the ongoing sewerage project in the city, being executed by the Punjab Water Supply and Sewerage Board in the wake of Vigilance raids and preliminary report, he said it would be premature to make any comments. “Let the Vigilance Bureau submit its report to the government. We shall take necessary action but in any case there will be no compromise on the quality of work.”

Choudhry Jagjit Singh further claimed that to maintain the tempo of development works in the state, the government had released massive funds. A whopping Rs 145 crore were provided to urban local bodies during the year for different kind of development projects. In this district alone grants worth Rs 1.12 crore had been disbursed recently. Out of this amount Rs 67 lakh were given to municipal council, Jagraon, Rs 19.64 lakh to Raikot, Rs 13.70 lakh to Sahnewal and Rs 11.60 lakh to Mullanpur.

Earlier, the minister inaugurated the projects for extension of main sewer at Dhandari Kalan on the GT road and construction of streets and roads in Sherpur Kalan followed by commissioning of a tubewell in the Daresi road area, construction of roads in Kirpal Nagar and energising streetlights in Bhai Randhir Singh Nagar locality.



Minister warns ration depot holders
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 3
Mr Harnam Dass Johar, Minister for Higher Education, Punjab, has asked the officers of Food and Civil Supplies Department to streamline the working of the ration depots in the city and to ensure that there were no irregularities being committed by some of the depot holders, while distributing the kerosene and other goods to the ration card holders.

These directions were given at a joint meeting of the officials of the Food and Civil Supply Department and depot holders held here today under the chairmanship of Mr Johar to discuss the complaints of the ration card holders and depot holders.

Mr Johar asked the depot holders to properly distribute the rationed commodities among the people and warned that in case of any kind of malpractice, stern action would be taken against the guilty. He also asked the District Food and Supply Controller (DFSC) to conduct a survey of persons, who have fraudulently acquired more than one ration depot in their name in the city and said that the extra licence would be cancelled.

On a large number of requests from the public regarding the preparation of new yellow cards for the ‘genuine’ families living below poverty line, Mr Johar assured that he would take up the matter at higher level to redress the problem amicably.

Ms Simarjit Kaur, DFSC, assured that no official of the department would be allowed to harass any depot holder and asked the latter to bring into her notice, if any employee of the department demanded bribe.

Mr Johar also discussed the progress of development projects in the city with the Commissioner, Municipal Corporation, and informed that the work on the Railway Overbridge near old Lakkar Bridge would be started soon, as the PWD had submitted utilisation certificate for the grant already given to them by the Municipal Corporation.

Mr Johar said that the Commissioner had assured that all development projects discussed in the last meeting of councillors of his areas, held with officials of Municipal Corporation would be completed fast and the work on the repair of Dugri Road would also start shortly.



HC orders survey of encroachments
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 3
The Punjab and Haryana High Court has ordered a survey to be conducted in Ludhiana to find out the encroachments and illegal constructions on the public land. It has also directed that the survey should also take note of the building law violations and those buildings which have been constructed against the sanctioned plan.

In an order passed by Mr Justice G.S. Singhvi and Mr Justice M.M. Kumar on May 24, the court said while the survey on building law violations and violations of the sanctioned plan can be conducted at a later stage, the survey report on encroachments and illegal constructions on public land be submitted to the court by August 26.

The orders were passed on a petition filed by a local councillor, Mr Satpal Puri, seeking directions to the Municipal Corporation, Ludhiana, for the removal of encroachments and illegal constructions on the government land. The Principal Secretary, Local Bodies, Punjab, Mr A.K. Dubey, and the Commissioner, Municipal Corporation, Ludhiana, Mr SK Sharma, were also present in the court when the orders were passed.

Mr Dubey assured the court that comprehensive survey of the entire municipal area of Ludhiana will be undertaken to identify encroachments and construction on government lands and municipal lands as also construction made in violation of the sanctioned plan or without obtaining sanctioned plan.



Transporters get another 2 weeks
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 3
Taking into consideration the problems faced by the transporters who had been issued permits to run mini-buses in the city under the local transport scheme, the district administration today gave them another two weeks to fulfil the conditions.

Deputy Commissioner Anurag Verma has set aside the previous order issued by his predecessor stating that all conditions should be fulfilled by May 31. The latest orders came in response to a request made by the transporters. They had pleaded with the Deputy Commissioner that they were not able to run the buses within the stipulated time due to practical reasons.

Mr Verma said of the 245 transporters, who were allotted permits under the project, only 10 were ready with the buses. The remaining were still in the process of getting the body of the buses built. He said that in order to make the scheme a success, all buses should start plying at one time.

He, however, said, if the transporters failed to run the buses on the routes within this time, their permits would be cancelled. The much-publicised mini-bus scheme was launched by the former Deputy Commissioner, Mr Anurag Agarwal. The idea behind the scheme was to discourage plying of autorickshaws , which are major contributors to air pollution in the city.

The Punjab Government has delegated powers of the Regional Transport Authority to the Deputy Commissioner, Ludhiana, for starting local bus services in the city. The administration has already identified 20 routes and 245 transporters have been issued permits out of 278.

The scheme was well received by residents of the city, with a population of more than 23 lakh, but lacking a mass transport system. There were 25,000 diesel-based auto- rickshaws for local transport.

The auto-rickshaws not only add to traffic congestion but are also the biggest source of air pollution in the city. The former DC claimed that the local bus service would not only provide comfortable, safe and cheap ride, but would also reduce traffic congestion and air pollution in the city because each bus would replace at least 50 auto-rickshaws.




A political melodrama is currently being enacted in Ludhiana with two main characters, the Ludhiana east MLA, Mr Surinder Dawer and his archrival and former Deputy Speaker, Mr Satpal Gosain, trying to give in their best (read worst) performances. The last week has seen allegations and counter-allegations between the two of them. So much so they did not mind washing the dirty linen in public. And not surprisingly both of them ridiculed each other’s humble beginning with Mr Dawer reminding Mr Gosain of his having started his career as an ordinary clerk in Punjab State Electricity Board and amassing huge wealth, and the latter (Mr Gosain) retaliating and reminding him of selling vegetables and then constructing palace-like houses. There is much more to the dialogue, but for the limitations of propriety and decency.

Parking? No way!

Parking blues are nothing new to the residents of the city. But what really drives the people crazy is parking delays that are caused when you need to get over with some important errand quickly. But this is exactly the opposite of what happens when you happen to visit the local secretariat, especially the office of the Senior Superintendent of police (SSP) or the local treasury. The overzealous cops on duty don’t let you anywhere close by if you happen to be an ordinary citizen. The standard answer that you get is that the parking is reserved for police officers. But if you manage to throw your weight around, you are immediately accommodated.

Customised holidays

With the weather touching an all-time high and city faced with acute water and power shortage, many people are all set to hit the hills. Though the Shivaliks continue to remain the favourite destination, people are going in for what is called “customised tours”. A Chandigarh company has opened its office in Ludhiana to plan a trip for you based on what your pocket allows and the time you can spend on a vacation.

It’s your loss

The district administration having realised that not much can be done about the fires that are breaking out in the city and its neighbourhood has finally decided to use a smarter method of making the people more careful. It has started sending people around on a checking drive with the message: “If you do not take adequate precautions, it is your house that is going to go up in flames. Also, it is your own life that will be at stake”. Surprisingly the move has paid off, more and more people are now voluntarily seeking tips from the fire department about fire safety.

On tenterhooks

With rumours that the Punjab government is contemplating transfers of police officers after it released a list of IAS and PCS officers, most policemen in the city have been on tenterhooks since the last two weeks. But in the absence of any such list so far and talk about all such postings being deferred till after the panchayat elections, most police men are feeling the much needed relief. But there is bad news for some. Those posted in their home districts will have to move out still, even though it may be temporarily in keeping with the code of conduct for elections.

Cut fruit

Despite the fact that summers bring diseases with them, there is no check on the sale of cut fruit, ice candies and cold drinks. The city roads are dotted with the vendors selling cheap cold drinks and cut fruits. The local Health Department has done a lot to control this menace but unfortunately only on papers. The city residents unmindful of the danger lurking around savour these products with great gusto. A local doctor commenting on the selling of unhygienically prepared candies put it like this “Is desh ka Allah hi malik hai” (only god can save this country.)


A local resident called up The Tribune office the other day to confirm about a story that was carried in the newspaper. She had checked up in a Hindi newspaper and was really tired of doing so when she decided to call up the office. Over the phone she started accusing a colleague, who had gone to cover the story, of being approached by the other party even though the news was carried as anchor. When the colleague told her that the story was carried and even told her the placement she insisted and said she had checked up but it was not there. Finally, she interrupted and asked, ‘‘It was in which newspaper?’’ She was told it was in Ludhiana Tribune. ‘‘Oh!’’ pat came the reply, ‘‘Are there so many newspaper ‘factories’? I thought it was carried in a Hindi daily.’’

Shri or not?

As the war of allegations among a senior BJP leader, Mr Satpal Gosain and Congress MLA, Mr Surinder Dawer, over an alleged criminal goes on, the workers of both the parties are going overboard to protest against each other. In a protest march organised by Congress workers at the behest of Mr Dawer, anti-Gosain slogans were being raised on the pitch of voice. Some adjectives were being used with ‘‘Shri Satpal’’ till one of the workers pointed out, ‘Why are we calling him ‘‘Shri’’? The workers realised the ‘‘blunder’’ soon and switched over to his first name only.

Zebra nuisance

Despite inviting criticism from various quarters for painting Zebra crossing during day time, throwing the smooth traffic flow out of gear, the local Municipal Corporation continues to do so. For the last more than a month, the zebra crossings are being painted afresh at one chowk or the other. Everyday the traffic gets choked due to the practice. It has been demanded time and again that such works should be done during nights, as is done in metros and other cities, but there has been no affect on the authorities.

Superstitions and solar eclipse

Though solar eclipse is a pure scientific phenomenon, yet people due to ignorance and superstitions stick to the age old restrictions to be observed during that period. One is not supposed to eat during the period solar eclipse is on. All left over things in the kitchen can be used only if a special grass ‘kusha’ is put in the eatables. One is not supposed to sleep during eclipse time. The people feel that ‘eclipse’ is due to bad deed of human beings. So one has to donate something after solar eclipse . Bath has to be taken after eclipse to purify oneself. If one does not want to take bath, then water of holy Ganges has to be sprinkled for purification.

City — a big garbage dump

With the advent of summers, the city looks like a garbage dump. After every 5 to 6 meters, mounds of watermelons and muskmelon are lying. The straw on which they are piled up gives even more untidy look as the straw keeps flying away. Moreover, the ‘rehris’ carrying ‘litchis’ lemons, cucumbers are parked anywhere and everywhere. The construction material is thrown haphazardly on the brims of the road. The worst is the posters struck on the walls. The whole city looks quite like a big dump.

No love for classical music

Yesterday, Debu Chaudhuri, internationally known sitarist, gave a performance in the auditorium of Government College for Women. They were no tickets to see the performance as he was playing under the aegis of Kala Sewa Society. The society had invited him to conduct a workshop in sitar. It was very disheartening to note that the hall was half empty. The fun-loving people of Ludhiana had gone in large numbers seeking different kinds of entertainment in Sutlej Club. What an irony!

Encroachers’ paradise

The city has become a paradise for roadside encroachments, thanks to absence of a clear-cut , result-oriented programme by the Municipal Corporation or the district administration to deal with the same. Though the city residents are assured from time to time by the authorities concerned, mainly the Municipal Corporation, that soon they would have wider roads, particularly in the old, congested city, the scenario remains the same. In fact the number of roadside rehris and other unauthorised encroachments in the form of small tea , cigarette and lottery kiosks is on the rise. Investigations by Ludhiana Tribune reveal that a large number of such roadside encroachers enjoy some degree of political patronage. Even some small-time politicians are into the business themselves, employing people to man their rehris at prime spots in their areas. The men from the Tehbazari Department, who occasionally take a round of the city roads to temporarily scare away these roadside sellers, invariably spare a cluster of rehris at a particular spot put up there at the command of a political leader. In such cases, so confident are the employed men of their employer’s clout that they do not even bother to look at the passing tehbazari truck while other rehriwallahs are heading fast for the nearest by-lane. The clout of the encroachment mafia surely surpasses all government authority.




SAD gears up for panchayat poll
Our Correspondent

Sahnewal, June 3
The SAD has started gearing up for the panchayat poll.
Gatherings and party conferences are being arranged in order to mobilise workers and the public with a view to establishing win over the Congress.

Mr Amrik Singh Aliwal, former MP, while addressing a gathering at Gurdwara Reru Sahib at Sahnewal, on Monday asserted that the party shall not tolerate any humiliation or oppressive measures. He said, “We shall fight oppression jointly and will never allow the Congress to win by deceit”.

Jathedar Santa Singh Umaidpuri, former chairman, Market Committee, Sahnewal, and an SAD leader said; “ The SAD shall field a single candidate having strong backing from the party”.

Similar meetings were organised at Kohara, Doraha, Malaud, Rauni villages and the Payal constituency. Apart from the sarpanches and panches of the surrounding villages, the conferences were attended by Mr Jagjiwan Pal Singh Gill, an SAD activist, Mr Jarnail Singh Shahpur, Mr Tejinder Singh Madnipur, Mr Hardev Singh Matharoo, Mr Labh Singh Dhamot, Jathedar Dya Singh, Mr Jagdev Singh Tejpuri, Mr Jagroop Singh, Mr Harminder Singh Sandhu, Mr Tejinder Singh Ghola, Mr Baldev Singh Dharaur, Mr Santokh Singh Pawa and others.

Mr Jagjiwan Pal Singh Gill, an SAD, activist, informed this correspondent that the entire area had been divided into different zones and each zone has been sub-divided into various committees. Mr Gill said, “Shortly, we shall be meeting the Election Commissioner of Punjab to make sure that the elections are conducted in a free and fair manner. In any case, we shall not allow any bitter experiences to be repeated this time.”



New DCC chief spells out agenda
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 3
The newly appointed president of the Ludhiana District Congress Committee (Urban), Mr Jagmohan Sharma, says he has cut out the job for himself. “I will act as a bridge between the party and the government and my doors will always remain open for everyone”, he told The Tribune in an interview here last night.

Mr Sharma maintained that he would ensure that all party leaders and workers were thoroughly involved with the party. “I will try to win over everyone for smooth and effective functioning of the party and the government”, he said while pointing out that the Congress had an added responsibility.

He pointed out that the role of the Congress was quite different from the other parties since it was the party in power. He admitted that there were several grievances of the workers which would be redressed in due course of time. He assured that the party would provide appropriate feedback to the government on all issues and developments which could have far-reaching consequences.

The newly appointed DCC president also refuted that there was any dissension or factionalism in the party in Ludhiana. He claimed that the Congress would grow much strong and the results would be seen in near future only. He declared that he had made it his mission to involve everyone with the party under the leadership of the Chief Minister, Capt Amarinder Singh.



BJP workers protest against Dawer
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 3
In yet another day of protests, BJP workers of the Ludhiana East segment staged a demonstration at the Samrala Road against the Congress legislator, Mr Surinder Dawer for his charges and allegations against the BJP leader and former Deputy Speaker, Mr Satpal Gosain.

The demonstration was led by the president of the Ludhiana East unit of the party, Mr Subash Sharma. They alleged that Mr Dawer was deliberately levelling these charges against Mr Gosain, in order to divert the attention of the public from the burning issues like the non availability of water and electricity.

The BJP workers demanded an unconditional apology from the Congress leader and warned that they would continue with their protest demonstrations in case he did not desist from making “irresponsible” statements against the BJP leader.



Install traffic lights, demand shopkeepers
Our Correspondent

Machhiwara, June 3
The project of widening of the Khanna-Machhiwara road, which started one and half years ago, have brought the main chowk here on the brink of disaster. Owners of the shops around the chowk have fears that this development work will destroy their business.

The reason behind this terror was that the contracting company had constructed a chowk of 36-metre circumference by demolishing the old chowk. The construction of a chowk with such a big diameter had narrowed the path all around the chowk. So the owners feared that on the pretext of widening this path around the chowk, the surrounding shopkeepers could be made scape-goats. Before the construction of the chowk it was planned to install traffic lights here by demolishing the old chowk. The local Nagar Panchayat had agreed to take the responsibility of the maintenance of the traffic lights which were supposed to be installed by the PWD. But what prompted the officials concerned to build a chowk was beyond everybody’s consideration. As at the time of agreement, the contracting company was also asked to install traffic lights instead of a chowk here. But now when the construction work was about to be completed, the orders of building a chowk were surprising the residents here.

The PWD’s orders of construction of the chowk had created a fear among shopkeepers all around the chowk. They feared that the department would issue notices to them to demolish their shops anytime as similar notices had been issued at Samrala. The shopkeepers were approaching political leaders of all parties but they had not been given any assurance so far. But all political parties of the town were united against demolition of shops.

These parties, including the ruling Congress, Akali Dal, BJP, CPI and CPM had warned that their workers would be forced to demolish the chowk if traffic lights were not installed. But despite these warnings the construction of the chowk was in full swing which was likely to be completed by this week.



‘Run old-age homes commercially’
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, June 3
Since modern India has adopted the nuclear family system, old-age homes have acquired a new meaning. Young couples, due to paucity of accommodation, economic reasons and to a large extent with the desire to have a nuclear family, are sending their aged parents to live in old-age homes. So far these homes are being run by charitable institutions or with the Red Cross assistance. However, now that rich couples are also wanting their parents to move out, old-age homes should be run on a commercial basis, say senior citizens.

“And why not?” says Dr G.K.Nakra. Children have to live their own lives. So many children are opting to go overseas for a better future. So why should parents stand in their way. The answer is to make old-age homes comfortable and attractive. The homes should provide all comforts that one needs in old age like air-conditioners in summers and heating arrangements in winters. Food should be nutritious and cooked hygienically.

Each home should have a swimming pool, a golf course and other indoor games facilities like a billiard room and a card room. It should also have a library. A doctor, a nurse and a dietician should be attached to the home. At the twilight of life one wants to live in relative ease, specially when one has slogged all through his life. Why not enjoy the money earned?

Mr S. Channi, a pensioner, says, “Old-age homes should be run on a commercial basis so that senior citizens can live with dignity. When we are working, we are respected, but once we retire, we become non-entities. Old-age homes should be set up on the western pattern since the percentage of such people is increasing. At present, old people from the lower middle class and the middle class are living in old-age homes, generally run on charities. They get meals and shelter, but not comforts. Yet they are better there than fending for themselves on roads.

However, well-off senior citizens want homes to be run on a commercial basis. They want security as well as recreation and serenity. “We don’t mind paying for our comforts, but we do not want to feel isolated. We want companionship, which we can get in these homes,” they say.



Christian bodies to lodge protest
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, June 3
Mr Bachan Masih president, United Masihi Dal, convened a public meeting of all Christian organisations of Punjab here Monday. Rev. Prabhu Dass from Christ Church, Ludhiana, offered the opening prayer. Father Daniel Gill of Holy Cross Church, Sarabha Nagar, presided over the meeting. Mr Bachan Masih while speaking on the occasion told the gathering that on May 15 a photograph was published in a Hindi daily which showed photos of Lord Jesus Christ printed on the V-shaped slippers which were being sold in the markets of Denmark.

“This news has hurt the religious feelings of all Christians”, said Mr Bachan Masih. Rev. Janak Abraham of Bethel Prayer Hall condemned this act and Captain Niyamat Masih of Salvation Army Church also condemned and asked to organise protest march and rallies throughout Punjab. Mr Surjit Singh Gill, President, Punjab State Seva Dal Congress, pointed out that it might be an anti-Christian propaganda. Rev. William Mattoo also pointed out that some times back a naked photo of Lord Jesus Christ was published by a newspaper and a photograph of Mother Mary was printed on the packing of a contraceptive pill, which was later removed by the pharmaceutical company after a strong protest.

The chairman of the meeting, Father Daniel Gill proposed to lodge a protest against this to the Ambassador of Denmark and ask him to investigate the matter thoroughly and bring the culprits to book. An action committee would be formed for drafting and presenting of the memorandum to the Ambassador of Denmark in India at New Delhi, he said.



‘Ban mobile flour-grinding mills’
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 3
The Atta Chakki (flour grinders) Welfare Society of Punjab has urged the government to implement the orders of the Punjab and High Court, banning the mobile flour-grinding mills as these had rendered them jobless.

A meeting of the society was held here yesterday, which was attended by representatives from across the state. It was observed at the meeting that the mobile grinding mills were causing a lot of loss to the existing grinding mills. The flour grinders alleged that they were not following any norms specified by the government.

The society also demanded that the power supply to villages should be properly regulated and it should be supplied during the day also.



Two killed, four hurt in accident
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 3
Two persons were killed and four others sustained injuries when a Tata Qualis hit a tractor-trailer near Dhandri on the GT Road late afternoon today. The persons travelling in the tractor-trailer fell on the road due to the impact of the accident and were then crushed under the Qualis. The Tata Qualis then hit a wall causing injuries to its four occupants.

According to the police, the deceased have been identified as Virgu Nath Sharma and Vikas Ram, residents of Oswal Nagar in the city. The injured have been identified as the car driver Rakesh Kumar, Balwinder Singh, Baljinder Singh and Gurpreet Kaur.



Two killed, one hurt in accident
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 3
Two persons were killed and one injured in a head-on collision between a jeep and a Canter near Sidhwan Khurd on the Jagraon-Ludhiana GT Road, 4 km from here, today.

According, to information a Jeep coming to Ludhiana had a head-on collision with a canter coming from the Ludhiana side, killing Navdeep Singh, son of Mohinder Singh of Model Gram Road, Ludhiana, and Koona, son of Pandey of Saadi of Orissa and injuring the driver of the jeep namely Devinder Singh.

He was, admitted to the Civil Hospital, Jagraon. The driver of the Canter fled the scene. The police has started investigations.



Mazdoor union continues dharna

Ludhiana, June 3
Families of members of the Lal Jhanda Mazdoor Union continued their dharna against the hike in sand royalty outside the Deputy Commissioner’s office here today.

Mr Amarnath Koomkalan, president of the union, said though they were called by the Additional Deputy Commissioner, (General), Mr Rahul Bhandari, but the problem was not being solved. He said that Mr Bhandari had told them that the memorandum submitted by them was sent to the JMIC.

He added that their meeting with the JMIC had borne no fruit. TNS



Bus owner booked for ‘kidnapping’ driver
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, June 3
A case was registered under Sections 364, 302, 201 and 34 of the IPC and Section 25 of the Arms Act yesterday on the statement of Mr Bhagwan Dass, a resident of Bhanbhora village in Sangrur district and driver of a bus (PB 298-9523), against Davinder Singh, owner of the bus and Inderjit Singh, both residents of Thakharwal village. The complainant told the police that he was the driver of the bus. As he was on leave, another driver, Arjun Singh, a resident of Barmalipur village near Payal, was put on duty in his place. The complainant alleged that the suspects had come to the PRTC workshop at Ludhiana on April 24 and kidnapped Arjun Singh at gurnpoint following an altercation. The owner of the bus had accused the driver of selling the diesel from the fuel tank of the bus. The complainant said he suspected that the kidnapped driver might have been murdered. No arrest has been made so far.

Assault cases: A case has been registered under Sections 323, 324, 427, 506, 148 and 149 of the IPC on the statement of Mr Ashok Kumar, a resident of Mohalla Azad Nagar, against Sham Lal, a resident of Faridkot; Pappy and a few other unknown persons accompanying them. The complainant alleged that the accused had attacked him with sharp-edged weapons at Lachhman Nagar yesterday and injured him.

Another case under Sections 341, 323 and 34 of the IPC was registered on the complaint of Kalu, a resident of Mohalla Islam Ganj, against Bhanwar Lal, Shakti, Raju and Hans Raj, all residents of the same locality. The complainant alleged that the accused had beaten him up on the Jail Road yesterday. No arrest has been made so far.

A case has been registered under Sections 323,324,506 and 34 of the IPC on the statement of Mr Arvind Shukla, a resident of New Kundanpuri, against Ashwani Kumar, and his brother-in-law Vijay Kumar. The complainant alleged that the accused had beaten him up and attacked him with sharp-edged weapons on Sunday. The accused had also threatened him, added the complainant. No arrest has been made so far.

The Sarabha Nagar police has registered a case under Sections 323, 341, 506 and 34 of the IPC on the statement of Mr Jaswinder Singh, a resident of Bhai Randhir Singh Nagar, against driver of a car ( PB IOT-2337), Laddi, a resident of the same locality and three other unknown persons. The complainant alleged that the accused had beaten him up and also threatened him. No arrest has been made so far.

Eve-teaser booked: The Model Town police has registered a case under Sections 294 and 506 of the IPC on the statement of Ms Balwinder Kaur, a housewife living in Dr Ambedkar Nagar, against Dilbagh Singh, a resident of Jammu Colony. The woman alleged that the accused had teased her while he was driving a car.

Two booked: On a tip-off yesterday that some persons were selling kerosene on the black market in Transport Nagar, the police raided the place and arrested Nirmal Singh and Amrik Singh, both residents of a village in Amritsar district and booked them under Section 7 of the Essential Commodities Act. The police also seized two tankers containing kerosene.

Beaten up: The police yesterday registered a case under Sections 341, 323, 148 and 149 of the IPC on the statement of Mr Manoj Kumar, a resident of Vehra Mohan Singh in New Janta Nagar, against Madan, Marru and some unknown persons accompanying them. The complainant said the accused had beaten him up. No arrest has been made so far.

Thefts: The police has registered a case under sections 454 and 380 of the IPC on the statement of Mr Balkar Singh, a resident of Basant Nagar, against unknown person(s) who allegedly broke open the lock of his house on Monday and decamped with cash and gold ornaments. According to the complainant, he suffered a loss of about Rs 20,000. No arrest has been made so far.

Another case of theft was registered under Section 379 of the IPC on the statement of Mr Baldev Krishan who stated that his Tata-407 had been stolen from outside his house on the intervening night of Sunday and Monday.

The police also registered a case of theft under Sections 457 and 380 of the IPC on the statement of Mr Aman Kumar , a resident of Model Town , against unknown person(s) who broke open the lock of his house in Lakkar Bazar in his absence and decamped with Rs 1,50,000 and gold ornaments. The complainant stated that he had gone to his Model Town house last time on May 30 and when he returned on Monday, he found the house burgled. No arrest has been made so far.

Two women die: The police has registered a case under Sections 279 and 304-A of the IPC on the statement of Mr Sandeep Kumar, a resident of Urban Estate Phase-II, Jamalpur Colony, against Sarabjit Singh, a resident of Bhaini Sahib. The complainant alleged that the accused, who was riding a motorcycle, had hit his mother while she was crossing the G.T. Road and fled the scene. His mother later succumbed to the injuries on Sunday, added the complainant.

The police has registered a case under Sections 279 and 304-A of the IPC on the statement of Mr Manmohan Singh, a resident of Abdullapur Basti, against the driver of a private bus plying between Khanna and Ludhiana. The complainant said Ravinder Kaur, wife of his brother Jatinder Pal, was travelling from Khanna to the city on Monday. While she was getting down, the driver allegedly sped the vehicle as a result of which Ravinder Kaur fell down and died on the spot. No arrest has been made so far.

Girl receives burns: A 17-year-old girl sustained burns at Bhatian village on Monday. According to information, Rupinder Kaur was making tea in the kitchen and the stove burst. She was rushed to the Civil Hospital, Khanna, from where she was sent to Rajindera Hospital, Patiala. According to the doctor, she had got 100 per cent burn injuries.

One killed: One person was killed when an autorickshaw in which he was travelling overturned as a result of sudden cut undertaken by the driver of the autorickshaw at Nandpur chowk near here on Monday.

Balwinder Singh of Gobindgarh village, driver of the autorickshaw, managed to come out safe but the passenger, Krishan Kumar, received fatal injuries during the accident. He was taken to the Civil Hospital at Sahnewal where he was declared brought dead.


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