Saturday, June 14, 2003, Chandigarh, India


L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Contestants make beeline for voters’ lists
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 13
Lack of concerted efforts by the state government to publicise the schedule for the panchayat poll in advance has invited criticism from the contestants, who have to virtually run from pillar to post for getting the voters’ lists, besides getting answers to their queries. The poll is to be held on June 29.

Long queues outside various block development and panchayat offices give an indication of the problems being faced by the people. Although the nominations are to be filed on June 16, no sample form for filing nominations is available. The government has not carried out any awareness drive regarding the poll schedule.

Many contestants told TNS that all they know from their own sources is that one returning officer has been appointed for each group comprising 15 villages.

“ We are yet to get the voters’ lists or the format of the nomination forms. No one has informed us whether the same can be collected from the respective BDPOs or the DDPOs offices. It will take another couple of days to get the formalities completed. The government could have announced the schedule and given adequate time for the people to prepare their documents,” lamented a contestant from a nearby village.

Citing an instance, another candidate for the post of sarpanch said, “On an average each village will elect one sarpanch and nine panches. Even if there are two candidates for the above there will be 20 candidates in a village. As a precautionary measure every candidate will have a covering candidate, thus, taking the number of persons filing their nominations between 40 and 50.”

“They will also have to get affidavits typed and get it attested from a magistrate before filing their papers. There will be chaos since each returning officer will accept and issue receipts for more than 600 applications in just three days as June 19 is the last date for withdrawal,” he pointed out.

Sources said there were no instructions for ensuring an adequate stock of stamp papers nor have the magistrates been directed to remain present during these three crucial days i.e. June 16 to 19.

Meanwhile, the zone-wise list of the villages in the reserved categories are as follows :

Ludhiana - I

SC General — Ayyali Kalan, Baddowal, Bhanorr, Bhairon Munna, Chhandran, Daad, Daakha, Dule Gahaur, Kanganwal, Katani Kalan, Kuhara, Mullanpur, Mundian Tibba.

SC Women — Dettwal, Dhandra, Kanech, Kheri, Majara, Pamal, Phulanwal, Threeke Colony.

Women General — Alamgir, Waraich, Barwala, Bilga, Bir Sahnewal, Gill, Humaunpur, Hassanpur, Jandiali, Janta colony, Jhameji, Jhaman, Jhande, Kailpur, Lalton Kalan, Mangli, Uchi and New Raj Guru Nagar.

Rest of the villages are in the general category.

Ludhiana - II

SC General — Ayyali Khurd, Bajra, Bajra Colony, Balliaywal, Barewal Fogran, Bhagpur, Bhama Kalan, Bhaini Gahi, Bhatian, Birmi, Baunkar Gujran, Burjman Kaud, Dharampura Colony, Fatehgarh Jattan, Ghuman Chak, Harkishan Vihar, Hawas, Jassian, Jiwan Pur, Kakowal, Krore, Khawajke, Khehra Bet, Lakhowal, Mafian Kalan, Mangli Khaas, Mehlon, New Khaira Bet, Noorwala, Partap Singh Wala, Fagla, Kadian Raipur Bet, Rajoor Rattan Garh, Rajapur, Shah Thana, Sanghe, Tajpur Bet and Uppal.

SC Women — Bachan Singh Lagar, Bagga Kalan, Chuharwal, Dashmesh Colony, Dhanansu, Dhaula, Gaunsgarh, Ghumait, Hayatpura, Jonewal, Kalas kalan, Khasi Kalan, Khasi Khurd, Kot Gangurai, Koom Khurd, Ladian Kalan, Manewal, Mangli Tanda, Miani, Rattan Garh, Sattowal,

Women General — Allowal, Bagga Khurd, Bahadarke, Basmi, Bhaini Sahib, Bholapur, Bhukhri Kalan, Bonkar Dogran, Boothgarh Vanjara, Baure, Chak Jattan Kalan, Chaunta, Chuharpur, Dheri, Gaddowal, Garcha, Garhi Sher, Ghalewal, Gaunspur, Gujjarwal Bet, Hadiwal, Harian Hussainpur, Issewal, Jhanjipur, Kakka, Kalas Khurd, Karian Kalan, Koom Kalan and Ladian Khurd.

The rest of the 75 villages fall in the general category. 



Youth Congress to launch awareness drive
Our Correspondent

Amloh, June 13
The Youth Congress would play a significant role in the panchayat elections. It would organise meetings in every village of the district to tell people about various development policies of the Congress government, said Mr Manish Verma, district chief of the Youth Congress, at a meeting of workers here today.

The district unit of the Youth Congress took a decision to organise an awareness march that would start from Sirhind grain market on June 16. The march would reach Bassi Pathana after passing through main bazaars of Sirhind and Fatehgarh Sahib. People would be urged to fight against social evils of dowry, female foeticides and to get rid of drug menace, he said.

The district unit would also honour veteran Congress leaders of the district. Plantation of saplings would also be undertaken, he said.



‘Absconder’ in Vigilance records, ‘present’ in police records
Jupinderjit Singh
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 13
Are the Punjab Police and the Vigilance Bureau working at cross purposes in the case of suspended Punjab Police Inspector Paramjit Singh ? The cop has the status of an ‘absconder’ in the State Vigilance Bureau records for seven weeks now, but has been, surprisingly, marked ‘present’ in the record of the Police Lines here on June 8 after which he proceeded on medical leave for seven days.

As per norms, an accused wanted by any security agency in the country should be arrested by any agency that gets hold on him. In this case, Inspector Paramjit Singh is wanted by the State Vigilance Bureau on the charges of corruption, possessing disproportionate assets and manhandling DSP Darshan Singh, besides obstructing him in his duty during a raid at the house of a government doctor on April 24.

However, as per the Police Lines records here, he marked himself present on June 8 and proceeded on medical leave till June 15. This means that he was present in the Police Lines and should have been arrested and handed over to the Vigilance Bureau, but the norm was given a go by.

The accused cop was transferred to the Police Lines after the registration of a case against him. He had been serving as the SHO, Sadar police station, before that.

Official of the local Vigilance Bureau expressed surprise when they got this information. A DSP of the bureau confirmed from Police Lines officials over the phone about the information and found it true.

The SSP, Ludhiana, Mr Narinder Pal Singh, informed Ludhiana Tribune, after verifying from the Police Lines, that the cop had marked himself present and was on medical leave now. He said he had joined on June 11 and would look into the matter.

Mr Kanwarjit Singh Sandhu, SSP, Vigilance Bureau, said as per the records of the bureau the cop had not got bail in the case. He said the cop was an absconder. Vigilance sources revealed that they were taking the matter very seriously and would seek clarification from the district police authorities. 

Official of the Vigilance Bureau had been conducting raids since April 24 to arrest the accused cop. However, he could not be found anywhere. It was quite surprising that he conveniently marked himself present in the Police Lines register under such circumstances. The Vigilance Bureau had no information that the cop was on medical leave. Under the norms, the bureau should have been informed that the cop was on medical leave, besides specifying the nature of his ailment.

Sources said it was important for an accused cop to remain present, otherwise, he could be chargesheeted for remaining absent. The accused was booked by the bureau under Sections 186, 332, 333, 353, and 220 of the IPC for obstructing in the work of a raiding team of the Bureau. He was also booked under Section 13 (1) (E) and 13(2) of the Prevention of Corruption Act.



City students shine in AIEEE results
Mohit Gogia is Punjab topper in BE, Sachit in B.Arch
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, June 13
Students from local schools have brought laurels to the city by attaining top ranks in the state for admission to engineering and architect colleges through the All-India Engineering Entrance Examination (AIEEE) conducted by the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE), the results of which were out on the Internet late last night.

Mohit Gogia, who has done plus two from DAV Public School, has topped among the BE aspirants from Punjab and got 21st position at the national level. Sachit Chodhary from Sacred Heart Convent Senior Secondary School, Sarabha Nagar, has topped among B.Arch aspirants from Punjab and is ranked 56th at the national level.

Among other top BE aspirants is Saurabh Taneja from BCM Arya Senior Secondary School. He has secured 10th rank in the state and 77th at the all-India level. Meyank Kukreja from the same school has got 13th position in Punjab and 251st in India. Next in the line is Deven Kalra from DAV Public School who has got 21st position in the state and 557th at the national level.

Harsimrat Singh Sandhawalia, a student from Guru Nanak Public School, has got 31st position in Punjab and 821st in India. Sahil Soi from Bharatiya Vidya Mandir, Udham Singh Nagar branch, has got 43rd rank in the state and 1313th at all-India level. Rupandeep Singh Vig from Sacred Heart Convent Senior Secondary School has got 60th rank in the state and 2063rd at the national level. Rohan Monga from the same school has got 62nd position in Punjab and 2077th in India.

Following them is Manish Gupta from DAV Public School on the 80th position in the state. The 98th rank has been shared by Harsh Kumar Singla from DAV Public School and Kunal Gupta from Bharatiya Vidya Mandir. Anant Gandhi and Madhur Arora, both from KVM, have got 119th and 127th ranks at the state level, respectively. Nikhil Singla from BCM Arya Model Senior Secondary has got 130th position. Varun Jindal from KVM has got 151st rank.

Sakshi Jalota from Sacred Heart Convent Senior Secondary School has got 173rd rank. Ajay Yadav has got 180th rank. Harmandeep Singh from Guru Nanak Public School has attained 187th rank. Ridhima Mangal from Sacred Heart Convent Senior Secondary School has secured 200th rank.

Topper Mohit said that he had thought that the result would be out on June 15. But last night, around 10.30 p.m., his friend called him up to inform him about his result. He said he could not believe him till he himself checked his result on the Internet. Mohit said he was still waiting for the IIT results, which was expected to be declared on or before June 20. He would take a final decision after that, he said. He said his top priority was doing electronics engineering from an IIT. He had already cleared the IIT screening test and obtained 19th rank in All-India Reliance (AIR) Test for entrance to Dhirubhai Ambani Institute, he said.

Sachit said he was interested in B.Arch, but BE was more suitable for him keeping in view the family business. He said he was in a dilemma and would consult members of his family before making any final decision.

Saurabh from BCM School said he had also received a call letter from the National Defence Academy (NDA). He said he was also waiting for the results of IIT and DCE. He said his teachers and his parents had been his real inspiration.

Meyank, Deven and Harsimrat, too, said they were awaiting IIT results. Sahil Soi said he had got 378th rank in Bharatiya Vidya Peeth, Pune, and was sure to get admission there. But, he said, he would try admission through AIEEE as well.



Hero’s family struggling for livelihood
Kanchan Vasdev
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 13
Even though a Khud Mohalla resident, Kartar Singh, sacrificed his life while saving people caught in the fire that killed at least 20 persons last month, his family is struggling to make ends meet. The promise of job for next of kin of the deceased, besides recognition of his bravery, has not yet been fulfilled.

Kartar Singh, alias Lucky, was a hosiery trader in Khud Mohalla, He received severe burn injuries during the fire while rescuing many persons trapped inside. He managed to reach the hospital by riding pillion on a scooter. He died there as infection had spread throughout his body. He has left behind his wife and two minor children.

Kartar Singh, who lived opposite the hosiery factory that caught fire, jumped into the fire after he heard cries. His widow, Jasbir Kaur recalled the incident. “We had come home after shopping and he had asked me to prepare tea. Then we heard cries from a factory opposite our house. He ran out of the house, covered himself with a blanket and started rescuing the workers trapped inside. Half an hour later, I saw him going to the hospital on a scooter. I had never thought he would never return home,” she said, with tears rolling down his cheeks.

She and her two children have virtually no one to fend for them. After his death, some officials of the district administration visited his house in Khud Mohalla and assured his widow that she would be given a job. “But nobody came to us after that. He jumped into the fire caring little about his own life. People talk about his bravery in the area. But nobody is there to look after his children. One is 12 years old and the other is eight only. They are still studying. If I get a job, I will be able to earn my livelihood,” Jasbir said.

In a representation sent to the Punjab Chief Minister and the local Deputy Commissioner, Jasbir Kaur has made an appeal for providing immediate help to the family. She said a bravery award should also be announced for her husband.



Arrest of newsman condemned
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 13
Ludhiana-based journalists have strongly condemned the arrest of Mr D.B. Chopra, a city-based journalist of a leading English daily, on the basis of a ‘false case’ registered at Ahmedgarh in Sangrur district. Mr Chopra was picked up from his residence at Ahmedgarh early this morning by police party led by ASI Kor Singh.

The police had registered this case in January last under Section 420 of IPC on the basis of a complaint by an Ahmedgarh tailor, allegedly engineered by the police. Interestingly, when Mr Chopra approached the said tailor with regard to the complaint with some locals of Ahmedgarh, the tailor failed to even identify Mr Chopra.

Immediately, a representation was made to Mr A.S. Rai, SSP Sangrur, who reportedly chose to overlook the complaint. Describing this, as a direct attack on the freedom of the press, the city-based journalists have demanded immediate withdrawal of the case. “Mr Chopra has been punished for his bold reporting, exposing the police-criminal nexus,” it was observed.

Mr Chopra has lately been very critical in his writings about the police functioning in Ludhiana and Ahmedgarh. He has written several stories exposing the involvement of lower police staff in organising satta operations and in allowing prostitution for monetary considerations.



Govt blamed for Talhan violence
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, June 13
Accusing the Congress government headed by Capt Amarinder Singh of promoting caste politics and complicating the situation at Talhan village, Mr Charanjit Singh Atwal, a former speaker of the Punjab Vidhan Sabha, today described the incident as a blot on the face of the government.

In a statement here, Mr Atwal said the government had pursued the “divide and rule” policy while dealing with the caste violence at Talhan. He said gross injustice had been done with the Dalit community. He alleged that the government had allowed the situation to worsen to draw political mileage, making Dalits the scapegoats in the process.

He further alleged that to keep its anti-Dalit policy under wraps, the government had blamed the administration. Rather than ordering the transfer of senior district and police officers in Jalandhar, the government should have made amends in its policies to deal effectively with the situation, Mr Atwal said.

“The Punjab Government prevailed upon the Chairman of the National Commission for Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes not to visit the site. Had the government followed the earlier directions of the commission with regard to the shrine at Talhan, the situation could have been prevented from taking an ugly turn,” he said.

Mr Atwal termed the incident involving a confrontation between groups belonging to two communities at Buta Mandi in Jalandhar as most unfortunate and unprecedented in the history of Punjab. He made a fervent appeal to Dalits and Jats at Talhan village to make coordinated efforts to maintain peace and communal harmony in the larger interests of the state and the country.

Meanwhile, Congress activists, headed by PPCC Secretary Parminder Mehta, took out a peace march from the Jagraon bridge to the Municipal Corporation headquarters to express their concern over the Talhan violence. The party workers offered flowers at the statue of Mahatma Gandhi and prayed for communal harmony and peace in Punjab. Mr Mehta appealed to the people of the affected localities as well as all political, religious and social organisations to exercise restraint and not to get provoked by vested interests, who were out to create disturbance.



Talhan violence: SAD seeks judicial probe
K.S. Chawla

Ludhiana, June 13
Captain Kanwaljit Singh, General Secretary Shiromini Akali Dal, and former Finance Minister, today sought a judicial inquiry into the role of Congress ministers of Jalandhar district in the Talhan Gurdwara affairs.

Talking to mediapersons Captain Kanwaljit Singh alleged that Congress ministers of Jalandhar district were keen on capturing the gurdwara at Talhan village as it had annual offerings of Rs 6 crore. The Congress leaders, he said, had adopted the policy of divide and rule and made all attempts to provoke the residents of the village and the neighbouring villages. The situation was allowed to be disturbed under a planned conspiracy, he said.

Captain Kanwaljit Singh said the residents of Talhan village had settled the issue and there was agreement that two representatives of the Dalits would be taken on the managing committee. But the district administration of Jalandhar did not want the issue to be settled and allowed the situation to become tense.

Captain Kanwaljit Singh said that the SAD could bring about amicable settlement but the government did not allow the SAD team to visit the village.

This was height of handedness and also showed that the state government was bent on creating divide between the two communities. Moreover, residents belonging to the two communities had expressed their faith in the Akali Dal but the Congress did not want the credit to go to the SAD.

The former Finance Minister said it was for the first time that Section 145 had been imposed for a religious institution in the state which was uncalled for and condemnable. This also indicated that the government wanted to have the control of the gurdwara at Talhan. He charged that the police had also played its role in vitiating the atmosphere Hailing the unity of the Akali Dals Captain Kanwaljit Singh said that this would strengthen the SAD and it was the need of the hour.

He said the unity among the Akali Dals would also help fight against the oppressive policies of the Congress government in Punjab. Captain Kanwaljit Singh said the unity would have a healthy impact on the prospects of the Akali candidates in the Lok Sabha elections next year.

Earlier, Captain Kanwaljit Singh addressed a gathering at Dholewal Chowk organised by the Kirti Samaj where the small traders and industrialists participated and he assured them that the Akali Dal would take up their problems with the Central Government .


Peace returns to Dehliz Khurd
Tribune Reporters

Ludhiana/Mandi Ahmedgarh, June 13
Tension prevailing in Dehliz Khurd village for the past five days was contained here today following the formation of a committee to manage the affairs of a gurdwara in the village, which had become a bone of contention between two factions of the Dalits. With an end to the controversy the routine activities at the gurdwara resumed on Friday after five days.

After the intervention of the district police, a managing committee of six villagers, including two presidents from the two groups was constituted and a compromise was struck between the warring factions.

The issue was threatening to snowball into a major controversy keeping in view the present scenario at Talhan village in Jalandhar. With the compromise the issue was contained.

Mr Pavittar Singh and Mr Gurmel Singh, both leaders of warring factions were appointed presidents of the gurdwara today and four others, including Mr Jasvir Singh, Mr Sandeep Singh, Mr Ramdass Singh and Mr Shamsher Singh were appointed the members of the managing committee. It was decided that Mr Gurmel Singh would be allowed to accept a part of offerings at the gurdwara.

Meanwhile, Mr Kirpal Singh Badungar, President, SGPC, while talking to the Tribune said he had taken a strong notice of the developments at the religious place. He said he had even urged upon the SSP, Sangrur to depute a gazetted rank police officer to investigate the matter.

He said the SGPC would not allow the opening of gurdwaras in small rooms and no such place would be named after a caste. The villagers heaved a sigh of relief today after the issue was solved. The activities at the religious place, which was in the centre of the row, were suspended for the past five days.

The matter flared up over a minor issue of offering money at the place when one faction, managing the religious place, refused to accept the ‘‘small amount of money’’ offered by the other group on the occasion of their son’s marriage.



YC to revamp ward, block-level units
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, June 13
To revamp the organisation and prepare the cadres for the forthcoming Lok Sabha elections, the district president of the Youth Congress, Mr Komal Khanna, has appointed a Ward Relations Officer and an Assistant Ward Relations Officer for a cluster of five wards each.

Addressing a meeting in Congress Bhavan here today, Mr Khanna announced that the WRO’s and their deputies would soon go round their respective wards to interact with concerned MLAs, councillors, block presidents and active party workers before making recommendations for the nomination of new ward presidents in the city.

Outlining the strategy for mobilising party ranks to prepare for the polls he said after the new ward presidents and their respective executive committees were in place, another 10 member committee for each of the 700 booths in the 70 wards in the city would be set up which would be entrusted the responsibility of manning their respective booths during Parliament elections.

The DYC chief further observed that the process for the nomination of new ward presidents and the formation of 21-member executive committee for each ward would be completed by the end of this month so that the task of setting up booth committees could also be taken in hand immediately thereafter. He maintained that all sections of society and other categories like women, Scheduled Castes and tribes, backwards classes and dependents of freedom fighters would be given due representation in the ward and booth committees. Deserving activists would also be included on merit in the block and district-level units.

Mr Rakesh Sahotra, Mr Paramjit Thapar, Mr Jasbir Lavan, Mr Sunil Chopra, Mr Mohinderpal Malhotra, Mr Manjit Singh, Mr Satish Bhardwaj, Mr Billa Mahajan, Mr Satnam Singh and Mr Tarsem Sharma were present at the meeting.



Tension eases in Aligarh
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 13
The three-day long tension in Aligarh village between supporters of different political parties over the issue of laying of some commemorative stones subsided to large extent today when the civil and police administration decided to withdraw the move of installing a separate stone of the Congress.

Notwithstanding this move, women supporters of Akali-BSP party sat on a day-long dharna at the park site, to stall any fresh action of the administraion to install the stone of the Congress. These women led by sarpanch Harwinder Kaur had refused to comply with a compromise formula struck by warring parties with the police and the civil administration officials yesterday.  SDM (Jagraon) Gurmeet Singh told TNS that in the interest of peace in the village, the administraion had prevailed upon the Congress leaders to withdraw the move of laying their separate stone in the park.

No untoward incident was reported from the village today. Besides the dharna, there was no cause of tension in the village.



PSEB staff found absent
Our Correspondent

Kharar, June 13
Mr Bir Devinder Singh, Deputy Speaker of the Punjab Vidha Sabha, on Tuesday made a surprise visit to the sub-office of the Punjab State Electricity Board (PSEB) at Gharuan village in tehsil Kharar and checked the attendance of employees. Of the total 43 employees, only eight were found present at 9.10 am.

The employees, who were found absent included Mr Surinder Mohan, Additional Assistant Engineer and in charge of the office, Mr Balwant Singh and Mr Naranjan Singh, both Junior Engineers.

Mr Bir Devinder Singh had kept the raid secret. He along with Mr Sukhwinder Singh, SDM, Mr Rakesh Sahi, Executive Engineer of the PSEB and this correspondent reached Gharuan around 9.10 am and remained there till 11.45 am. The Deputy Speaker inspected the attendance register and the movement register and found that there was no entry in the movement register after June 5 morning. Some employees were found waiting for the concerned Junior Engineer to send them to attend to the complaints of the people. Absentees also included 12 linemen and 14 assistant linemen.

Mr Bir Devinder Singh talked to Mr Surinder Pal, Superintending Engineer, and Mr N.K. Dharmani, Chief Engineer of the PSEB, about the situation. He told them that the AAE was reportedly not staying in the village during night and was allegedly leaving the station without permission. He said while villagers were not getting regular supply of electricity, officers of the board were being negligent.

The Deputy Speaker was shocked to see a calendar having cartoons of the Prime Minister, Mr Atal Bihari Vajpayee and the Chief Minister, Capt Amarinder Singh in the office of the AAE. He asked the SDM to take it into custody and report the matter to the Punjab Government.

As the news of the raid spread, a large number of people assembled there. Many persons levelled allegations of corruption against a Junior Engineer in the presence of the Executive Engineer and the mediamen. Mr Bir Devinder Singh ordered the Gharuan police post in charge to record the statements of the complainants and register a case of corruption against the Junior Engineer concerned.

Mr Bir Devinder Singh told Mr Dharmani to take action against the guilty employees. He asked the Chief Engineer to ensure that all employees were present in the office by 9 am and entry should be made in the movement register when they go out.



Encroachments a traffic hazard
Our Correspondent

Sahnewal, June 13
The main market of Sahnewal remains congested due to the encroachments, which are not only a headache for pedestrians but are a major traffic hazard.
With the installation of traffic lights on the GT Road on one side and the frequently closed level-crossing on the other side, Sahnewal seems to be sandwiched between the two, providing hardly any space to breathe. The green signal paves the way for the rush to enter the town but the level-crossing, acts as a hindrance, thus blocking the space ahead. It is at this moment that accidents, quarrels, congestion and confusion creeps in.

The footpath that was once built in the front of shops, has almost disappeared. Roadside businesses flourishes as more and more rehriwallas are appearing on the scene. The pedestrians find hardly any space to move on the road. The smooth flow of traffic is also hit due to these encroachers. Not only the rehriwallas but the shopkeepers have also extended their shops to unauthorised limits.

According to Mr Devinder Singh Grewal, Executive Officer, Nagar Panchayat Sahnewal, “Once or twice in a month we remove the rehris with the support of police officials. Everytime we take away two or three of them on our trailer.” But the next day, the same number of rehris appear on the scene. The anti-encroachment drive of the nagar panchayat has failed to bring any change. Stringent measures should be evolved by which a permanent solution could be sought.

The illegal collection of ‘monthly cut’ from the rehriwalas by the shopkeepers has also came to the notice of people. It is because of this reason that these rehriwallas care two hours for any anti-encroachment drive launched by the administration. 



Transport union threatens stir
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 13
The Ludhiana Goods Transport Association has warned the government of an agitation if it did not initiate measures to end the alleged harassment of truckers by district transport officers and state traffic police.

At a meeting held recently the members voiced their concern at the corrupt practices allegedly adopted by the DTOs and the police which was adversely affecting their business.

They pointed out that the challaning by the police starts at 6 a.m. and continues late into night.

The state government should lower the fine for overloading from Rs 2,000 to Rs 500. In case of overloading the challaning officer should get the truck weighed and then challan the person rather than fill in the excess load on his discretion. In many cases, the officials arbitrarily register the excess weight, they said.

Similarly, the policemen should only challan those trucks which used pressure horns within the municipal limits of the city and not those outside the city since there was no ban on such horns on the highways, they added.



Expressing love through gestures
Shivani Bhakoo

Ludhiana, June 13
Vineet Gupta, who is deaf and dumb since birth, has shown that you don’t really have to say those three words to express your love for someone. While communicating with Gayatri, who is also hearing and speech-impaired, he expressed through gestures that he wanted her to be his wife. The communication was perfect and they tied the knot on June 8.

“I was not very sure about the kind of person I wanted to marry, An advertisement caught my eye and I responded and when I met Gayatri, I knew this was the person for me,” Vineet told Ludhiana Tribune.

Simmi Gupta, Vineet’s sister, who is the Principal at Gupta Model School here, said 29-year- old Vineet was the youngest in the family. Vineet has another sister who is also deaf and dumb.

“But he leads a normal life. He is a matriculate, can drive all vehicles and operates all bank accounts by himself. He assists me in the functioning of the school. He collects the fee and deposit it in bank. Practical training to Vineet has been given by my late father. My father always wanted to make him happy and independent. Vineet does not face any difficulty while communicating with others, ” she said.

Vineet’s 22-year-old wife Gayatri is a Punjabi but she has done her schooling from Chennai. “Gayatri’s parents shifted to Chennai only to provide her with a good education at a school for the deaf and dumb. She is also a matriculate. She is good at cooking, she makes very good dosa and idli. Watching good serials on TV is her favourite pastime,” said Simmi Gupta.

Vineet read about Gayatri in the newspaper and sent his photograph and resume to her parents in Chennai. They called up Vineet’s sister on the phone and fixed up a meeting at Jalandhar, where Gayatri’s maternal uncle lives. Gayatri also accompanied her parents to Jalandhar. “We asked whether they liked each other. They gave a positive response and we made them sit in a separate room so that they could communicate with each other for a while. Both were happy and within a month their marriage was solemnised”, said Simmi Gupta.

Gayatri is not much familiar with Punjabi culture as for more than 15 years, she has stayed in Chennai. The couple plans to visit Vaishno Devi before going on a honeymoon.

Vineet’s mother and sisters are happy that finally he has got a good life partner. “We have consulted a doctor, who has assured that they would be having normal children,” they said.



Proof of identity must for PAN
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, June 13
The Central Board of Direct Taxes has amended sub rule 114 (4) by which it has been mandatory for every person seeking permanent account number (PAN) to attach the proof of identity as well as proof of address along with the application.

The requisite form No:49-A has also been amended and now the applicant will have to give declaration that the proof of identity and residential address stands enclosed with the form. Mentioning of PIN code has also been made mandatory.

Giving this information, Mr Anup Jain, president and Mr Jatinder Khurana, press secretary, Direct Taxation Bar Association, apprised that the date of filing of returns for the assessment year 2003-2004 had been extended till September 30, 2003 for the assessees, who files return electronically under Section 139(B) of the Income Tax Act. This extension has not been given to the persons who files return manually. The normal date for filing of returns in case of Company and Tax Audit cases is October 31 and in all other cases like individual, HUF and firms is July 31



Budda Nullah cleaning begins

Ludhiana, June 13 
The municipal corporation here has initiated the cleaning and desilting of Budda Nullah. The Irrigation Department will deploy three drag- line machines to begin with and later on two more will be added. The MC has already deposited Rs 10 lakh of the Rs 25 lakh estimated expenditure as advance with the department.

This was stated by the MC Joint Commissioner, Mr Prem Chand. He said for desilting of the open drains a team of officers comprising Joint Commissioner, The Superintending Engineer (O&M cell) and all Executive Engineers of O&M cell had already carried out a survey during the past couple of days. Though the manual cleaning of open drains in the city continued throughout the year wherever possible, but the annual cleaning and desilting was carried out before the monsoon with the help of machines.

According to Mr Chand, the work of cleaning of the Budda Nullah would be supervised by the SE (O&M) and his staff under the over- all supervision of the MC Commissioner, Mr S.K. Sharma. The MC had deployed extra staff for the manual cleaning and the total number of workers, 108 at present, would be further increased from Monday.

The MC Joint Commissioner sought the cooperation of the residents, asking them not to throw polythene bags, non-degradable material and other filth in the open drains. He claimed that the reports that the MC had spent Rs 1crore for the cleaning of the Budda Nullah last year were incorrect. In the last financial year the drain was cleaned at a cost of Rs 21.34 lakh.



3 of family killed in mishap
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 13
Three members of a family were killed while two other were seriously injured after a bus collided head on with a car near Alamgir village here today. The accident took place around 1 pm. Manager of Search and Development Centre, Focal Point, Om Parkash, was travelling in his car with his family. They were coming to Ludhiana from Bhivani. Near Alamgir, a tyre of a Punjab Roadways bus burst and the bus hit the car.

The collision was so powerful that it killed Om Parkash, who was driving the car, his son, Ashwani, and his niece on the spot. Mr Laxmi Chand, Om Parkash’s father, and his wife, Rekha, were seriously injured. They were taken to the CMC hospital. Sources said Om Parkash belonged to Bhivani and was working in the city.



Youth goes missing
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 13
A youth belonging to Ganganagar in Rajasthan, who had come here with his wife, has gone missing under mysterious circumstances from the city since June 8. The youth, Anil Kumar Sharma, had come here to leave his wife at her parents place during summer vacation. He was going back in a car with other co-passengers. His family claimed that the co-passengers told them that Anil stopped the car on the way outside Sunder Hotel and went there. But when he did not return, his fellow-travellers went inside the hotel, but failed to find him.

His father-in-law, Lal Chand Sharma, in a complaint to the police, said he had visited all his relatives and had failed to trace his son-in-law. He also claimed that neither he nor his family had any enmity with anyone. The police has registered a case.



Truck burnt, tragedy averted
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 13
A tragedy was averted after a truck carrying yarn wastage caught fire due to sparking in high tension wires, under which it was passing at Tibba Road here today.

The sparks set the yarn waste on fire at once and the entire truck was burnt within a few minutes. Just after the fire, the driver jumped out of the truck and was saved.



Five-year-old boy abducted
Our Correspondent

Sahnewal, June 13
A five-year-old boy was abducted by the servant of a house at Chak Sarwan Nath village this morning.
Police sources said the child, Gurjit Singh, son of Iqbal Singh, was abducted by Parmod around 9 am. The owner of the house had asked the servant to bring oil. Having got the money, the servant took Gurjit along with him and fled on a bicycle. The parents of the child said the servant had earlier stayed with them for six months and had rejoined two months ago.

Mr Gurbaj Singh, SHO, Sahnewal police station, said the police had found the owner’s bicycle which the servant had used from the Katani Kalan bus stand. He said it was likely that the servant had taken the child to Haryana. Police parties have been sent in search of the child. 



76 bottles of illicit liquor seized
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 13
The Excise and Taxation Department today seized 76 bottles and 36 pints of illicit liquor after conducting joint raids with the police at the Bar village. The liquor was seized from the possession of Surjit Singh, a resident of Barundi village. Mr G.S. Bahia, ETO, said the accused had been arrested and a case registered.



Man commits suicide
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, June 13
Raj Kumar, 40 a resident of Shaheed Karnail Singh Gate, Jagraon, committed suicide, here today, by consuming some poisonous substance. According to information, after consuming poison, he told about it to his wife. She managed to bring him to the Civil Hospital, but he died after an hour. He is survived by three daughters and two sons.



‘Wool consumption in India gets a beating’
Kuldip Bhatia

Ludhiana, June 13
After the September 11 tragedy in the USA, the textile and woollen exports from India have dwindled and coupled with many other factors, the wool consumption in India has gone down by around 20 per cent in the past last two years.’

This was disclosed by Dr S.K. Choudhry, Director, the Woolmark Company, India and South East Asia, in an interview with Ludhiana Tribune here today. He said till 2001, with almost 35 million kg import of greasy (raw) wool, India was the third biggest consumer of wool in the world. However, the significant reduction in export of woollen textiles, had relegated the country to fifth place in wool consumption after China, Italy, Germany and Japan.

Among the other factors, responsible for a slashed wool consumption in the country were the strengthening of cotton in garments market, particularly in the trousers segment and the ever-increasing prices of good quality wool, he observed.

Dr Choudhry was in town in connection with a technical seminar on ‘Improving the quality and spinning performance of worsted wool yarns’, organised by Woolmark Company in collaboration with the Wool Club. World renowned scientist in textile processing Dr Peter Lamb, Dr Bill Humphreys, Senior Scientist from Centre of Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation and Dr Kimble Curtis, an agricultural scientist, all from Australia comprised the faculty for the seminar.

The Woolmark director said the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR), associated with the woollen textile industry in India for a long time now, had recently taken up two new projects in the country in collaboration with the Union Textile Ministry. Under these projects known as ‘Scouring and effluent treatment’ and ‘Spinning prediction system’, scientists working with the ACIAR would hold intensive interaction with members of the woollen textile and spinning industry for better effluent treatment and an objective and accurate spinning prediction system. These projects would go a long way in strengthening the industry by way of better and economical manufacturing techniques, particularly for the wool processing industry.

Earlier, the technical seminar was attended by more than 70 members of the woollen and knitwear industry. Mr Sandeep Jain, Executive Director, Oswal Woolen Mills was the chief guest and Mr Harjit Singh, Chairman, Wool Club was also present.



Furnace units to defy PSEB move
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, June 13
Upset over the decision of the Punjab State Electricity Board (PSEB) on deposition of monthly consumption charges in advance, the North India Induction Furnace Association has decided that no induction furnace unit will comply with the order as the industry is already in a deep financial crisis.

The PSEB, while giving effect to the revised billing cycle for induction furnaces, had made it compulsory that every unit would have to deposit 15 day’s consumption charges on the basis of average consumption charges for the proceedings 12 months. The charges worked out on the basis of monthly reading would continue to be billed as per the existing billing procedure after due adjustment of the average fortnightly charges deposited by the consumer. Further, there would be no grace period for the fortnightly charges, the PSEB orders said.

According to the PSEB directions, in case of default by consumers in depositing the fortnightly charges, his advance consumption deposit would be updated by recovering ACD at the latest revised rates of Rs 1500 per KW applicable to power intensive rates. This additional ACD could be recovered in suitable instalments if so desired by the consumer.

Mr P.D. Sharma, president, Apex Chamber of Commerce and Industry (Punjab), had already taken up the matter with Mr Y.S. Ratra, Chairman, PSEB, to apprise him of the crisis caused by the revised billing cycle. It was further brought to the notice of Mr Ratra that some sections in the board were out to liquidate induction furnace units.

Mr Sharma claimed that the PSEB Chairman had given an assurance that he would convene a meeting with the induction furnace owners shortly to sort out the matter. However, unmindful of the difficulties being faced by the units, the PSEB had, in the meantime, started raising bills, which was most unfortunate and should have been avoided till the matter was sorted out, Mr Sharma added.



AirTel to launch tower at Payal
Our Correspondent

Doraha, June 13
AirTel Mobile Company has decided to launch a tower at Payal shortly. Releasing this information to the press, a sales manager of the company said they were planning to launch a tower at Payal.

Mr Ram Kapoor Vinayak, owner Vinayak Communications, said Bharti Mobile Limited had been catering to the needs of consumers all over and now with the launching of a tower at Payal, nearly two dozen villages would benefit. He said that the company always kept in mind the basic needs of the customers before providing them their services.


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