L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Dowry victim seeks justice
Kanchan Vasdev
Tribune News Service

Jagraon, November 20
A 25-year-old woman, mother of three young children, was forcibly made to drink kerosene and a bid was made to set her on fire for not bringing sufficient dowry.
Ms Jaswinder Kaur, married to Paramjit Singh of Aitiana village, was saved by sheer providence. When her in-laws were just going to set her ablaze on November 1, her father reached their house and saved her. She was rushed to the Civil Hospital at Raikot, where the doctors washed her stomach and treated her. Now she is staying with her parents at Jalaldiwal village, near Raikot, with her two children and is battling for justice.

The medico-legal report, in her possession, says she was smelling of kerosene, had consumed around 15 ml of the oil and had suffered blows on her abdomen. She had been admitted to the hospital for four days.

She alleged that while she had filed her complaint at two police stations, Jalaldiwal and Raikot, and a case was also registered, the accused had not been arrested so far. She had met the SSP of Jagraon, who she claimed had assured her of justice.

Narrating her shocking tale of torture, Ms Jaswinder, tears rolling down her cheeks, said she was married to Paramjit Singh and her father had given every household item to her in dowry. ‘‘My father had not given me a scooter and they had been demanding it for the last six years, besides Rs 50,000. We even got a house built in my husband’s name, but it failed to make them happy,’’ said Jaswinder.

Her in-laws had taken her 5-year-old son with them. After the registration of the case, her in-laws, along with her eldest son, had gone into hiding.

Mr Tirlok Singh, the father of the victim, said, ‘‘It was on November 1 that I was going to the house of my daughter. Little had I thought that this was the time she needed me most. When I reached there, I saw she had managed to escape from the clutches of her husband and was vomitting. He was stinking of kerosene. I took her to the Civil Hospital. My daughter had been telling me that she was being tortured by her husband for more dowry. I could never imagine that he would go to the extent of killing her.’’

Ms Jaswinder is the eldest of the three children of Mr Tirlok Singh. He had paid money to a travel agent for preparing the papers of Ms Jaswinder’s husband. ‘‘I loved him like my own son. I am doing everything for these children. Blinded by the greed for dowry, he almost killed my daughter,’’ he added. 



4 NRIs booked on fraud charge
Jupinderjit Singh
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, November 20
As many as four non-resident Indians (NRIs) have been booked by the Dehlon police on the charges of cheating, forgery and misappropriation of funds belonging to the Bhagwant Singh Memorial Charitable Trust, which runs a state-of-the-art hospital in Narangwal village in this district.

The running of the 33-year-old trust has once again run into a controversy with the registration of the case against these persons who had allegedly become the trustees through a fresh trust deed allegedly made without the consent or information of the (claimed) founder trustee and Canada-based NRI, Ranjit Singh Grewal. The accused have been charged with pocketing Rs 19.71 lakh, allegedly through fraudulently means.

Only a few months ago, the trust had witnessed a bitter struggle over the control of the institutions, the hospital and nursing home, which was formerly run by the trust and now being run independently by a doctor. Gurmail Singh Grewal, belonging to Narangwal and currently based in London, his daughter Inderjit Kaur, Harmeet Singh Grewal also of the same village but presently based in Tanzania, and his sister Inderjit Kaur have been booked under sections 420, 406,467,468,471 and 120-B of the IPC.

The case has been registered after a four-month-long investigation by the police. DSP (Dakha) Jatinder Singh Khaira had conducted an inquiry into the allegations levelled by the NRI Ranjit Singh Grewal and later the case was registered on the opinion of the DA (Legal), Jagraon.

According to a copy of the FIR registered at Dehlon police station, NRI Ranjit Singh Grewal, claimed he was the legal trustee and that he had visited the village in July this year and had called a meeting of the trust board. However, no one turned up for the meeting after which he claimed that the accused had forged a fresh deed and misappropriated the funds of the trust in his absence.

DSP (Dakha) Jatinder Singh Khaira in his inquiry report stated that he had found in his investigation that the accused had withdrawn lakhs of rupees from the bank accounts of the trust. In their defence to the police, the accused had claimed that the money was used on the upkeep of the institutions run by the trust. The inquiry report mentions that the NRIs were not in India and thus their statements could not be taken.

The inquiry report, however, did not find much substance in the allegation of the forged trust deed. It said that it was true that a new trust deed was made recently even though the original trust deed was made in 1970. However, there were not much differences in the content of both the deeds. Due to legal problems, the DSP recommended the opinion of the Assistant District Attorney (Legal) in the case. The opinion report said that the accused withdrew Rs 19,71,041 from various accounts which were not used for charitable purposes.

The trust owns property worth over Rs 30 lakh in the village besides a number of bank accounts. 



Youth shot at in group clash, old man dies 
of heart attack
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, November 20
A week-old minor dispute over exchanging newly bought readymade trousers from a cloth shop at Raikot Road, Mullanpur Dakha, which was defective led to the death of an old man, a gunshot injury to a youth and injuries to several others in a violent clash between two groups here this afternoon.

The old man, Sarup Singh, owner of the cloth shop, allegedly died after suffering a heart attack while he was narrating the sequence of events to the police at the clash site. The stunned policemen rushed him to a hospital, but he was declared brought dead.

The police was registering cases of attempt to murder against both parties. One youth, whose identity could not be ascertained, was reportedly admitted to a local hospital after suffering from a gunshot injury in the clash.

Sources disclosed that it began last week, when Baljit Singh, owner of a music shop, bought readymade trousers from Sarup Singh, whose shop is situated in the same market. Due to some alleged defect in the trousers, Baljit Singh sought to exchange the trousers which was refused by Sarup Singh. Both had an argument over the issue.

A few days ago, Baljit Singh was beaten up by a group of supporters of Sarup Singh, who followed it up by beating up some relatives of Sarup Singh the next day. The groups today gathered in front of the shops, armed with blunt and sharp-edged weapons. They clashed after challenging one another. Gunshots were fired by a relative of Sarup Singh.

The police intervened and separated the groups. The rioters were arrested and the injured were rushed to hospital. The clash took an unusual turn when Sarup Singh collapsed on the road while narrating the incident.



Heavy security outside government college
Student organisations threaten stir
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, November 20
The Jagraon police today posted heavy security at Sanmati Government Science and Research College after some student organisations threatened agitation in the wake of registration of a case of rioting against some students and politicians who spearheaded the violent demonstration over students’ death in Jagraon on Tuesday.

Choosing to act tough with demonstrators, who had damaged three private buses besides blocking traffic at the Ludhiana-Moga highway for over four hours, the Jagraon police had yesterday booked 11 persons, including students and president of the Sikh Students Federation Gurcharan Singh Grewal for rioting.

A meeting took place between the police and student leaders today over the issue. The students had staged a demonstration outside the house of a Municipal Councillor Purhsottam Lal Khalifa, who was the mediator between the police and students for ending the road block.

The police reportedly assured that no arrests would be made but cancellation of the registered cases would be possible only after the complainants, who were the owners of the damaged buses, would agree for the same. The police promised to help the aggrieved family of the deceased youth Amrik Singh in getting compensation from the Libra transports, under whose bus he was crushed on Monday.

The college remained closed for the fourth consecutive day today also as students refrained from attending classes.

Police sources said the case against the students was registered on a complaint of Ashwani Kumar, a bus conductor whose bus was severely damaged by the demonstrators. In his complaint the bus conductor had said the students action could have caused a major accident.

The sources said the police administration had decided to act tough against political leaders who allegedly hijacked the student agitation for their vested interests. The sources said political leaders should have at least ensured a peaceful demonstration. The police sources said the demonstration was unwarranted as the police had already arrested the bus driver and impounded the bus.

The student leaders, however, have been claiming that the police action came very late and only after the students went on rampage.

The sources said five accused students were arrested yesterday but released in the evening after college lecturers intervened.



SAD(B) Dalit wing reorganised
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, November 20
The president of the Dalit Bhalai Manch of the SAD(B), Mr Mohan Lal Banga, has claimed that their party alone could safeguard the interests of Dalits and ensure a place of pride for them in the society.

Addressing a meeting at the residence of Mr Darshan Singh Shivalik, in charge, Dakha Assembly segment of the party, after the new district body of the Manch was announced, he claimed that during his regime, party supremo and then Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal had launched a number of welfare schemes for the Dalits. He was sore that the facilities being provided by the previous government to the Dalits like free houses, free bus travel for senior citizens and women, concession in power bills and shagun scheme, had been withdrawn by the Congress government.

The district president of the manch, Mr Rattan Singh Kamalpuri, who presided over the meeting called upon the ranks to strive for the enlightenment of the Dalit community so that the dream of Dr B.R. Ambedkar could be fulfilled and the Dalits could become self reliant. Mr Shivalik asked the party workers to rally round Mr Badal and give a befitting reply to vindictive policies of the Congress government, which was out to settle political scores.

Mr Kamalpuri announced that the following had been elected office-bearers of the district unit of the manch: Senior vice-president — Mr Harbans Singh Bhanohar; vice presidents — Mr Netar Singh Ayali, Mr Surinder Pal Singh Dakha and Mr Harcharan Singh Sarinh; general secretaries — Mr Amar Singh Baddowal, Mr Tarsem Singh Ayali, Mr Surjit Singh Bhattian and Mr Narinder Singh Khaira Bet; organising secretaries — Mr Nachhattar Singh Hamayunpur, Mr Subedar Mohinder Singh, Mr Narain Singh Dolon, Mr Kabal Singh, Dr Sikander Singh, Mr Hardev Singh Ayali and Mr Balbir Singh Toor; secretaries — Mr Harbans Lal Aheer, Mr Pargat Singh Ayali, Mr Zora Singh Khanjarwal, Mr Nasib Singh Mullanpur, Mr Gurmeet Singh and Baba Nand Singh Nagar; coordinating secretaries — Mr Ajaib Singh Rauwal, Mr Chamkaur Singh Sheikhupura, Mr Daljit Singh and Mr Avtar Singh Happy; propaganda secretaries — Mr Gurdeep Singh Chauki Mann, Mr Gurcharan Singh Threeke, Mr Mohinder Singh Waraich and Mr Hardev Singh Boparai; finance secretary — Mr Gurdip Singh Saroye; press secretaries — Mr Gulzar Singh Gulshan and Mr Gurdev Singh Jhammat.

Prominent among those present at the meeting were Mr Manpreet Singh Grewal, general secretary, Shiromani Youth Akali Dal, Mr Maghar Singh Waraich, senior vice-president, SAD-B, Mr Avtar Singh Sheikhupura, Mr Ram Asra Singh, Mr Sukhdev Singh Chakk Kalan, Mr Surinder Pal Singh Baddowal, Mr Nirmal Singh Burj Manpur, Mr Inderjit Singh Khaira Bet, Mr Gurdeep Singh Leel and Mr Jagdish Singh Mehmi.



Lal Singh flays Badal for making VB documents public
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, November 20
The Finance Minister, Mr Lal Singh, today criticised the former Chief Minister, Mr Parkash Singh Badal, for going public with the Vigilance documents. He said Mr Badal was trying to pre-empt any fallout of the chargesheet. “But it simply amounts to confessing to the charges much before the chargesheet was filed”, he claimed, while denying that the disclosures caused any embarrassment to the government.

The Finance Minister was here to attend a function in connection with the cooperative week celebrations. He ridiculed Mr Badal and his son, Mr Sukhbir Badal for their “misadventure”. “What do they want to prove to the public by such gimmicks?”, Mr Lal Singh asked, while maintaining that the Badals have made the job of the government and the vigilance bureau much easier.

Coming down heavily on the Akali Dal supremo, Mr Lal Singh tried to play down the leak of the sensitive and highly confidential Vigilance documents. He evaded all questions on the issue saying that it should better be asked from Mr Badal and his son as where from did they manage to get those documents. He was non-committal as whether the government had initiated any inquiry into the leak of such sensitive documents causing much embarrassment to the government.

Mr Lal Singh said, these disclosures before the media would in no way help the Badals as the law would take its own course. He strongly denied the charges levelled by Mr Badal and Mr Sukhbir Badal that the government was trying to fabricate evidence against them. “Evidence can never be fabricated as it has to stand the test of law”, he said, while expressing the hope that due justice would be done in the matter.

The Finance Minister questioned the moral standards of the BJP, the alliance partner of the Shiromani Akali Dal. He pointed out, when the BJP could make the Defence Minister, Mr George Fernandes, to resign after the ‘tehelka’ disclosures merely for the reason that his house was used for defence deals, “how could it tolerate a corrupt leader like Mr Badal”. He claimed that Mr Badal’s company would prove to be too dear for the BJP and its consequences would be felt in the forthcoming assembly elections in various states.

Mr Lal Singh, considered to be too close to the Chief Minister, Capt Amarinder Singh, also sought to dispel the apprehensions of rising dissidence within the party. He claimed that all legislators, “without a single exception” were with the Chief Minister and the high command was also aware of the fact. He alleged that such reports were being spread by certain vested interests who did not want to see Punjab prosper.



Cops upset over recent transfers
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, November 20
It is in the open now. The brewing resentment against the posting of a recently promoted Superintendent of Police in the city, closely related to a former president of the Punjab Youth Congress, has culminated into some of senior police officers lodging their protest with the Punjab Finance Minister Mr Lal Singh, at a government function here today.

It is reliably learnt that two SPs and two DSPs, posted here made their resentment known to the minister against the posting of Mr Harmanbir Singh as SP (Operations) saying that the officer was junior even to the serving DSPs and the move, motivated by political considerations, would adversely affect the morale of the police force.

During the reshuffle of the middle rung police officers by the Chief Minister Capt Amarinder Singh, the said SP was shifted to the city, reportedly under political pressure. Initially, a proposal was mooted to create a new post of SP(City III) to accommodate him but stiff opposition from the senior police officers led to the proposal being dropped for the time being and the officer was designated as SP(Operations). The SSP, Mr Narinder Pal Singh, was on record to have said he was not aware of any proposal to create a new post of the SP (City III).

Not all Congress leaders, who could pull strings, were obliged by the Chief Minister while finalising new posting orders of police officials, claim well placed sources. Some were in for disappointment as well. It is learnt that another middle rung police officer of the rank of the DSP, who was also closely related to a Congress legislator and was heading an important police subdivision here, had been transferred within a fortnight of his posting.

The sources said, although he was offered an equally important post, still he was far from being happy with the new posting.

Ludhiana happens to be the most sought after place among all officials of any rank of any department for varied reasons. Even some officials prefer to keep their families here only as the educational facilities are considered to be the best in city after Chandigarh.



MC Commissioner inaugurates tubewell
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, November 20
Municipal Corporation Commissioner S.K. Sharma reaffirmed the commitment of the civic body to bring about a qualitative improvement in civic services and make the city a better place to live in.

Addressing a function at Salem Tabri in Ward 4 after inaugurating a tubewell to augment water supply in surrounding localities, he dwelt upon the agenda for the overall development of the city during the year, which was being observed as ‘development year’. He said a comprehensive programme had been chalked out for intensive repair and resurfacing of all major and minor roads and improvement of infrastructure in the industrial belts.

Mr Sharma laid the foundation stone of a project for the construction of roads in the area at a cost of Rs 17.5 lakh and performed the switching on ceremony of a Rs 8.5-lakh streetlight project in the locality.

Meanwhile, the area councillor of Ward 42, Mr Satwinder Singh Jawaddi, claimed that development projects worth more than Rs 1 crore had been sanctioned for different localities in the ward and Rs 29 lakh would be spent on development projects in Jawaddi, Rs 21 lakh in Vishal Nagar, Rs 12 lakh in Punjab Mata Nagar, Rs 23 lakh in Shaheed Karnail Singh Nagar and Rs 37 lakh in Vikas Nagar.



2 labourers rescued from well
Our Correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh, November 20
A five-hour-long joint operation by the civil and police administration saved two persons who had got buried in a deserted well.
Sources said Ramzan Khan, alias Zanni, of Rohira village and Iqbal Khan of Begowal village were buried under earth when the walls of the well they were working in collapsed. They had been engaged by Mr Makhe Khan, the owner of the fields.

Dr Indu Malhotra, SDM, Malerkotla, who supervised the rescue operation, said coordination between the civil and police administration saved the lives of the two youths, who were seriously injured. Both injured persons have been shifted to Civil Hospital, Malerkotla.



Sabha to observe martyrdom day
Our Correspondent

Samrala, November 20
The Brahmin Sabha here has decided to observe the martyrdom day of Bhai Matti Dass, Bhai Satti Dass and Bhai Dial Dass at the local Durga Mandir on November 30. This was stated by Mr Behari Lal Saddi, the president of the sabha, here today.

Talking to media persons, Mr Saddi said these martyrs sacrificed their lives along with Guru Teg Bahadur, the Ninth Sikh Guru, on November 11, 1675.

On this occasion, Dr Gurdev Singh Pandoh will read papers on the martyrdom of Bhai Matti Dass, Bhai Satti Dass and Bhai Dial Dass, he added.



Infant thrown near canal
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, November 20
A newly born child, wrapped in a polythene bag, was allegedly thrown near the Gill Canal yesterday afternoon by an unidentified woman. The police registered a case under Section 318 of the IPC on the basis of the statement of Mr Pawanjit Singh, who lives near Gurdwara Guru Arjan Dev.

Kidnapping alleged: The police registered a case under Sections 452, 365, 332, 148 and 149 of the IPC on the statement of Mr Rajvir Singh of Sant Isher Singh Nagar on Pakhowal Road, against Amit Mittal, Vijay Kumar, Nitin Jain, Gurwindrejit Singh and Sanjay Kumar, residents of Moga. The complainant alleged that the accused forced their way into his office, beat him up and kidnapped him on Tuesday. The accused took him to Moga in a Tata Qualis, added the complainant.

Man killed: The police registered a case under Sections 279 and 304-A of the IPC yesterday on the statement of Mr Surinder Singh, a resident of Heeran village, against an unidentified truck driver who hit a man near the village on Tuesday and sped away. The man, who was badly injured, was rushed to the Civil Hospital at Ludhiana, where he succumbed to his injuries on Wednesday. The police is clueless about the incident.

Held for gambling: The police yesterday raided a gambling den in Civil City, Haibowal Kalan, and arrested Joginder Kumar, Vinod Kumar, Babu Lal and Akbar Ali, residents of Chander Nagar, Haibowal, while they were allegedly gambling there. An amount of Rs 270 and playing cards were seized from their possession.



Kisan loan mela held

Machhiwara, November 20
An agriculture loan mela was organised by the local branch of the Oriental Bank of Commerce yesterday. Mr Ashok Verma, DGM, (head office) and in charge of Rural Department of the bank, was the chief guest whereas Mr Rajiv Rishi, DGM, (Regional Office), Ludhiana, presided over the function.

Addressing the farmers on the occasion, Mr Rishi said after the nationalisation of the bank in 1980, its working had improved a great deal due to which no loan account had been declared dead till date. Because of such a magnificent working the Oriental Bank of Commerce was one of the nine top most banks in Asia and was amongst the 200 finance companies of the world, he added. Mr Verma expressed his gratitude to farmers from Machhiwara , Samrala, Khanna, Ikolaha, Doraha, Sahnewal and Bhamian Khurd for their fair dealing. OC


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