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‘Dead’ man resurfaces after four years
Our Correspondent

Khanna, December 11
In a bizarre case, a man reportedly murdered four years ago has been found alive by the Khanna police. He allegedly cooked up the fake murder story to pocket the ransom amount of Rs 5 lakh that he had got by acting as his own kidnapper besides settling scores with a rival of his family.

Arrested by the Khanna police on the charges of extortion and giving wrong information to the police here, the man, Harjit Singh was produced before mediapersons in a press conference today evening.

The SSP Khanna, Mr Pramod Ban, claimed in the press conference that a case of cheating, making false accusations, putting somebody’s life in danger by false accusations has been registered against him and his family members. He said some other persons involved in the crime would also be arrested soon.

Harjit Singh told the mediapersons during the press conference that he had done so to teach a lesson to the family of Sunil Sharma. He said on November 14, 1999, he left his house and parked his scooter near the Doraha canal. He placed a letter in his handwriting saying that in any case of any harm to his life Sunil Sharma and his family members should be held responsible.

The Khanna police had registered a case against Mr Sunil Sharma, a reporter of a Hindi newspaper, and his brother Ravi Sharma at the City Police station. It was alleged in the FIR that they had kidnapped Harjit Singh and thrown him in a canal after killing him. A letter of compromise was also signed by the family members of Harjit Singh after taking the said amount.

According to the police the family members of Harjit Singh were getting money from the accused and knew about his place of hiding. Some days ago, Bhajan Singh, father of Harjit Singh had received some money from Sunil Sharma.

However, luck favoured Sunil Sharma who came to know that Harjit Singh was regularly visiting his wife at Kapurgarh village in disguise.

On the complaint of Sunil Sharma, the police has registered a case under Sections 211, 389, 420 and 120-B at City Police Station. Manjit Kaur, wife of Harjit Singh and his father Bhajan Singh, are absconding. Raids are being conducted by the police to nab the co-accused.


School prospectus cost has parents fuming
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, December 11
Exorbitant charges for prospectus and registration being levied by the school authorities here for admission of children to nursery and KG classes have left the parents fuming.

The parents said since they were not certain about the selection of their children for admission to a school, they were forced to buy at least four to five forms along with the prospectus. They had to shell out nearly Rs 1500 for this. After filling the form, it had to be registered in a day or two for which they again had to spend money to the tune of Rs 2000.

The parents alleged that it was sheer extortion on the part of the schools authorities that were charging anything between Rs 250 to Rs 500 for a prospectus. The schools authorities on the other hand have said they were distributing prospectus having good quality paper and in four-colour printing which was costing them high. But parents have argued that they could give them important information about the school in a much more simpler way.

In fact, there is much variation in the cost of the admission forms. A copy of form alongwith a prospectus costs Rs 500 at Greenland Public Senior Secondary School. The charges for the same are Rs 300 at Delhi Public School and Rs 250 at BCM Arya Model Senior Secondary School, Shastri Nagar. In sharp contrast, Sacred Heart Senior Secondary School, Sarabha Nagar, is selling its form for Rs 30 and Kundan Vidya Mandir is charging Rs 50.

A simple process of entry of the form in the school records is even more higher. The charges levied by Delhi Public School are Rs 500. Sat Paul Mittal School is charging Rs 400, GMT Senior Secondary School is taking Rs 300, Spring Dale Public School is charging Rs 250 and Sacred Heart Convent School at Sarabha Nagar is charging Rs 100.

Ms Anu Kaushal, a parent, said the charges being levied by schools were unjustified. She alleged that all schools of the city were making money in a big way as each one of them was getting over 1000 applicants. She said the district administration must take some action to regulate the charges. She said that in case the school refuses admission to a child, it was the moral responsibility of the school to refund the registration charges. In the child gets admission, the money should be adjusted in the admission fee.

Mr Rajesh Rudra, Director of Greenland Public Senior Secondary School, when asked about the high charges for prospectus, said he was giving a 250-page book about the school with coloured illustrations along with the form. He said the cost of its production was high. He, however, added that he was now deciding on get it re-printed and reducing its charges to Rs 250.

He said money would be refunded to all those parents who have already bought a copy from the school counter.

Ms Yogita, in charge of admission process at DPS, said if the parents wanted quality education, they have to pay for it. She said none of the classes would have a strength of more than 20 to 30 students. 


Typists, deed writers evicted from mini-secretariat
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, December 11
The removal of typists, deed writers and stamp vendors from the mini-secretariat here today evoked protests from the affected persons, who raised slogans against officials of the district administration. The administration had forcibly removed these people from outside the Bachat Bhavan.

They claimed that after the shifting of the district courts from the old complex, they had been going to the authorities concerned for the past six months for making arrangements for them but to no avail. And now they had been displaced from here also, they need .

Led by Mr Gursewak Singh, Executive Magistrate, a team of administrative officials asked the typists to vacate the place but when they did not budge, the team forcibly threw their goods in a tempo. The affected later persons staged a dharna at the mini-secretariat.

Mr Karnail Singh, president of the Deed Writers Association, said that he had been earning his livelihood by writing deeds in the old courts complex for the past 20 years. “The officials had not done any arrangements for us and now they want us to leave this place also.”


Khanna SSP to probe molestation case
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, December 11
Mr Pramod Ban, SSP, Khanna has been appointed the investigating officer in the infamous molestation case of a woman constable that has rocked the city police. Mr Ban was already inquiring into the case as the inquiry officer by the Punjab Police.

He was appointed the investigating officer also in order to end the problem of multiple inquiries. Under the rules an investigating officer is appointed after the registration of a case.

Sources disclosed that the Punjab Police may inform the Punjab State Commission for Women and the Punjab State Human Rights Commission also that Mr Ban would be the sole inquiry officer in the case. The Women Commission had directed the State Police to depute DIG (Crime) as the inquiry officer.

Mr Narinder Pal Singh, SSP, Ludhiana, said Mr Ban had already started the investigation process.


Liquor banned in bar poll

Ludhiana, December 11
Strict guidelines have been issued to the candidates contesting elections of the District Bar Association. They have been restrained from sticking posters, defacing court complex and serving liquor in the New Judicial Complex. Any violation could lead to disqualification of the candidate.

As per the code of conduct issued by the Returning Officer, Mr Jaspal Chugh, no candidate or his supporter shall serve liquor, neither shall they serve any non-vegetarian dishes anywhere in the court complex till voting is over.

No candidate or his supporters shall paste any poster or deface the complex in any manner. OC


Scooter device brings him state award
Deepkamal Kaur

Ludhiana, December 11
Gagandeep Singh, a class XI student of the Ramgarhia Senior Secondary School for Boys, Millerganj, was simply going through his lessons on combustion engine when the idea of creating a scooter device came to his mind. With the device thus made, Gagandeep was successfully able to inflate the punctured tyre of a scooter or a motor cycle without going to any vulcanising centre.

Gagandeep presented his idea at a tehsil-level science model exhibition held on October 21 under the title ‘Spark plug as air filling device’ and won the first prize. He was selected for the district-level contest that was held on October 30 this year and again won the first prize. He then went to the state-level contest held on December 6 at Fatehgarh Sahib and has again brought back the first prize.

Gagandeep said that never in his dreams had he thought that he could win so many prizes for the simple idea. He owed his success to his science teacher, Mr Sohan Singh, who guided him and inspired him to prepare the exhibit. “Without his guidance, I could have not won a single prize”, the boy said.

Explaining the principle of his model, he said that highly compressed air available during the compression and exhaust strokes of a petrol engine could inflate the pneumatic tube. The compressed air could be used to inflate the air on the tyre tube using a small connecting attachment.

Demonstrating the working of the device Gagandeep said that the petrol knob must be closed initially and the engine should be made to run for sometime till the petrol in the carburettor was burnt completely. He further explained, “The metallic socket of the connecting tube must be fitted in the cylinder head of the engine by initially removing the existing spark plug. Then the air-filling end of the connecting tube should be fitted to the valve of the tube of the tyre that needs to be inflated. After this, the vehicle should be kicked. Each kick would then fill the compressed air in the pneumatic tube of the tyre.”

Mr Sohan Singh said that the student won prize for a model which cost him just Rs 30 for the connecting tube available with scooter service units. He said the device attracted everyone’s attention and helped hundreds of people get the idea of how they could help themselves tackle the day-to-day problem on roads.

Even if a tyre gets punctured on way, people can apply the mechanism and save themselves from the harassment of dragging the vehicle to the vulcanising centre.


Jagirpur land scam once again in centrestage
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, December 11
Unable to find a solution to the 30-year-old panchayati land scandal, residents of Jagirpur village near here, have finally demanded a CBI probe into it. The scam is being put at worth crores of rupees.

The scam came to light three years ago when a group of villagers complained to the then Deputy Commissioner to look into the matter. The leader of the villagers was even stabbed and a case of fraud was registered against him. He got respite recently when the Division Number -V police station started the proceeding under Section 182, IPC, against the complainants for registering a false case.

Villagers have been alleging that a piece of 55 acres of land was allotted to the gram panchayat way back in 1973 under the Indira Vikas Yojna. The then deputy Commissioner had transferred 45 plots in the name of villagers that time. But since they were unaware of the scheme they did not claimed the possession.

The land was grabbed by some persons who even tried to sell it. The land valued at the rate of Rs 25 lakhs per acre, has been cynosure of land grabbers, who according to the villagers work in the form of a mafia. The villagers claim that various inquiries have been initiated into the case by the administration but nothing fruitful came out of it as the land grabbers are allegedly influential people. They demanded that only an inquiry by an independent agency can salve the matter.

According to Mr Tarsem Banga, a villager the land having mutation number 729 (July 24, 1987) and 730 (July 24, 1987) as per the revenue records belonged to the panchayat of Jagirpur village and some people had illegally occupied it.

He added that surprisingly the records do not so anybody’s possession as there is no ‘‘jamabandi” done in anybody’s name. But nobody knows how the land was sold and resold by some persons. Mr Banga also said that some alleged land grabbers were having some power of Attorneys signed in the name of some women who don’t live in the village, although the land was a panchayati land and it was allotted to the villagers only.

The villagers said that they were facing problems in identifying the real owners as it was an old issue and most of the elderly, who were aware of the events, have either passed away or are more than 80-year-old. They are now unable to recollect the case.

They alleged that though the land belonged to the village panchayat as per the revenue records, the local administration was not doing anything to get it vacated and hand it over to its original owner. They said that the fight between the panchayat and its illegal occupants had been going on for the last more than 10 years. They had even approached the former Chief Minister and the Rural Development and Panchayat minister over the issue but to no avail.


Follow teachings of saints, Verma tells people
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, December 11
The Punjab Governor, Justice O.P. Verma (retd), today called upon the people to follow the message of peace, brotherhood and service to the suffering humanity propounded by great saints and Gurus so that all human beings could flourish irrespective of their caste, creed or colour.

He made these observations after participating in a four-day mahayagna organised for world peace by Haidakhandi Samaj at Aggar Nagar here. The Governor also paid his obeisance before the charan paduka of Sant Bhole Baba of Haidakhan. Hundreds of the followers of the Baba from different parts of the world are attending the four-day event and will pray for the welfare of humanity and peace in the world.

The Governor said that our great saints had themselves practised the philosophy of moral and human values during their times, which they had been preaching to follow among the people, and their message was still relevant in the present context of the social set-up.


Ex-policewomen complain against sons

Ludhiana, December 11
Two former policewomen have complained to the district police authorities about the harassment meted out to them by their sons, both of whom are presently serving in the police department only.

It was an unusual afternoon for City-I SP, Harish Kumar yesterday when the two women, one a retired DSP and the other a retired Head Constable filed written complaints against their own sons. The son of the former is working as a Constable here while of the other is posted as a Head Constable in the police lines.

Sources disclosed that DSP, Sarabha Nagar Gurjit Singh and DSP S.S. Kahlon have been appointed as inquiry officers in the case. TNS


Woman dies in mishap, case registered
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, December 11
On the statement of Mr Shukar Singh, a resident of Bonkran Gujjran village, the Koom Kalan police yesterday registered a case under Sections 279 and 304-A of the IPC against the driver of a mini bus Joginder Singh, a resident of Mand Chaunta village. The complainant had stated that while he was going on a scooter along with his wife Raj Kaur, the accused, who was driving a mini bus, hit the scooter near Machhian Khurd village on Wednesday night, as a result of which his wife fell down and died on the spot. No arrest has been made so far.

Smack peddler held: The Shimla Puri police yesterday arrested Surjit Singh alias Jeeta, a resident of Guru Arjan Dev Nagar and recovered 110 gm of contraband smack from his possession and booked him under the NDPS Act.

Fraud alleged: The Sarabha Nagar police yesterday registered a case under Sections 420 and 506 of the IPC on the statement of Mr Tajinder Singh, a resident of Bhai Randhir Singh Nagar, against Kuldeep Singh, a resident of Urban Estate, Dugri, now living in his neighbourhood. The complainant had alleged that he had given Rs 1.5 lakh to the accused who had given him a cheque for repayment of the same amount. But the cheque was not honoured by the bank concerned and that the accused had committed a fraud on him. When he asked for an explanation from the accused, he was threatened by him, added the complainant. No arrest has been made so far.

Assaulted: The Sadar police yesterday registered a case under Sections 324, 323, 452 and 34 of the IPC on the statement of Mr Raj Kumar, a resident of Mohalla Isher Nagar, against Hardeep Singh, Ramesh Kumar, Jinder, wife of Ramesh Kumar and Harjinder Kaur, residents of Nichi Mangli village. The complainant had alleged that the accused, who were his in-laws, forced their way into his house, beat him up and injured him and he was admitted to the Civil Hospital on Wednesday. No arrest has been made so far.

Satta bookies held: The division number 6 police arrested Vishal Kumar, a resident of Iqbal Ganj chowk area yesterday and booked him under the Gambling Act. The police said today that the accused was indulging in booking ‘satta’ and ‘darra’ bets openly in the area and that a sum of Rs 450 was recovered from his possession. 


Wool exporters visit China
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, December 11
A high level delegation of Indian wool and woollen exporters led by Dr D.K. Verma, Executive Director of the Wool and Woollens Export Promotion Council visited Chinese cities, including Beijing and Shanghai, as part of a sales-cum-study tour to China.

The members interacted and held meetings with their Chinese counterparts. The Chinese expressed interest in exporting woollen knitwears and shawls from India while Indians wanted to source cashmere yarn, raw wool and woollen waste from China. The two sides sought to forge closer cooperation for mutual benefits.

During the visit a seminar-cum-buyer-seller meet was organised at Beijing which was attended by 35 importers and manufacturers of woollen products in China. The meet was organised with the help of the Indian Embassy in Beijing and was addressed by Ms Peng Yanli, President of the China Woollen Industry Association as also senior officials of the Indian Embassy and the Executive Director of the council.

A large number of inquiries related to imports and exports were generated during the meetings with Chinese manufacturers. The issues relating to the setting up of joint ventures were also discussed in Beijing and Shanghai. The follow-up action by individual exporters is likely to result in increase in bilateral trade of woollen products in China and India.


Engg exports to touch $ 10 billion by 2005
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, December 11
Engineering exports from India and particularly from the northern region had made a remarkable progress with the total exports during the current year expected to be to the tune of $ 8.50 billion as against $ 7.87 billion during the last year. An ambitious target of exports of worth $ 10 billion by the year 2005 had been fixed by the Engineering Export Promotion Council (EEPC).

Talking to mediapersons here today, the Director General of Foreign Trade, Mr L. Man Singh observed that it was not only the total export generated from the country that had shot up but the kind of engineering products being exported also spoke volumes about the potential of the Indian exporters. Whereas, in the past, the auto parts used to be a major item among the engineering exports from the country, now Indian cars were the hot favourites the world over.

Similarly, the steel exports from the country had also surged ahead with an increase from Rs 6,000 crore to 9,000 crore over the year. China being a major market for the Indian steel, the rising export had also changed the nature of Indo-China trade in favour of our country.

Mr Man Singh, who was here in connection with presentation of awards of excellence for export performance in the Northern Region for the year 2000-2001, further informed that the Directorate General of Foreign Trade (DGFT) was in the process of simplification of procedures and intensive computerisation to provide online services for registration, approval and verification of different documents. While admitting that a little bit of leakage of custom duty and draw back incentives did take place despite various checks and procedures, he said such minor loopholes did not mean that the system was imperfect.

Replying questions about abnormal hike in steel prices in the country and the industry’s uproar against the cartel of major steel producers, he commented that it would be wrong to blame the DGFT as such for the situation. The condition of conforming to BIS standards was imposed on imported steel by the DGFT since it was mandatory for the domestic product. But once the steel ministry withdrew this requirement, the DGFT had also followed suit. “Same was the case of fixing floor price for the domestic steel which was necessary to protect the steel industry. All these restrictions have been removed now.”

Mr Man Singh admitted that inspite of cuts affected over the years, the custom duty on import of steel was still on a higher side and the DGFT had taken up the matter with the Union Finance Ministry for further cut in the duty to bring it to a realistic level. He, however, hastened to add that the pattern of steel consumption in the country, over the last few years, had undergone a sea change. The consumption had gone up tremendously to the extent that the steel industry, once considered sick and unworthy of being restructured by the financial institutions, was now thinking in terms of capacity expansion.

Mr Satish Dhanda, Chairman and Mr S.C. Ralhan, Chairman (Northern Region) of the EEPC, who were also present on the occasion said the northern region had achieved an impressive export performance of Rs 10,225 crore during the last financial year which was 32 per cent more than the previous year.

Commenting that almost 60 per cent of the export of engineering goods from the region was made by small scale sector, despite having a locational disadvantage, Mr Ralhan pleaded for freight subsidy against the export from North which would increase the export manifold. He also asked the government to grant income tax benefits under Section 80HHC and to evolve a policy under which the exporters had an assured the supply of steel from major producers.


LG leader in electronic goods, says survey
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, December 11
‘The multinational brand; LG, has emerged as the leader in various product categories as per the recent ORG-MARG figures, reiterating its position as the leading consumer durable and electronics brand in the country.’

Claiming this, Mr Anil Arora, Head Marketing, LG Electronics India Ltd, said LG’s brand leadership position was attributed to the holistic approach towards rendering quality products, good communications and innovative marketing initiatives and dynamic sales team. Consistent efforts were made to make the brand synonymous with world class products. As a result, it was not surprising that LG had emerged as the leader in numerous categories, including being number one in terms of market share in flat TVs, washing machine, microwaves and frost-free refrigerators.

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