L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


19 give slip to death
Tribune News Service

Rescuers help a woman down a ladder
Rescuers help a woman down a ladder. — Photo by Pradeep Tewari

Ludhiana, May 21
Nineteen persons, including four girls, had a providential escape today after they were trapped atop Navrang Towers building when it caught fire around 10 am today.
While the extent of damage is yet to be assessed, no loss of life has been reported. The apparent cause of the fire is said to be an electric short-circuit.

Heart-rending scenes were witnessed during the period 19 persons were trapped on the terrace of the multi-storeyed building. With the elevator of the building going out of order and the stairs engulfed in dense smoke, the trapped persons had no way out except to go on the terrace. Their woes were compounded with the sun shining bright and the temperature going up. They had to spend about three hours of uncertainty under the scorching sun before they were rescued.

While questions were being raised as to how the civic authorities allowed such a multi-storeyed building to come up with no arrangement for parking or fire safety, fire brigade officials also did not have any immediate arrangements to meet the situation.

It took the police and the fire service officials at least three hours to make a stairway right up to the top of the building. They joined several ladders together to make these reach the top. It was difficult to convince the people atop to come down using these ladders as these appeared to be quit weak. The DSP Sarabha Nagar, Mr Rabcharan Singh, himself went to the top and convinced the people to come down.

Ms Puja, an employee of Navrang Electronics, was the first one to come down. She was followed by others. Visibly shocked and unable to speak anything they were given first aid.

Navrang Towers is one of the tallest buildings in the Pakhowal road area. It houses showrooms of multinational companies, including LG, Sony, Airtel and others. Surprisingly, there are no fire safety arrangements or emergency outlets. To make the situation worse, the fire brigade officials did not have the elevating platforms so that they could reach the top for rescuing people.

The owners of the building were tight-lipped about the cause of the fire. They also refused to comment over the extent of loss. They said the exact amount of loss was yet to be assessed. The fire reportedly started from the fourth floor of the building where packing material was lying. Within no time, it spread to other floors, causing major damage to the building.



Colleges resent delay in admission notifications
Deepkamal Kaur

Ludhiana, May 21
Resentment prevails among the authorities of local technical colleges over the delay on the part of the Punjab Technical University (PTU) in issuing notification for admission to BBA and BCA courses.

The college directors have said that the university had yet neither come out with the schedule of admission nor printed any brochures defining the admission process. They said that many students had been coming to the colleges for the past fortnight to enquire about the same but they were being told to contact little later.

The colleges authorities are apprehensive that meritorious students would take admission to BCom or some other courses being offered in many colleges here. They said that while till previous years, the PTU had notified the admission dates and even issued brochures to all colleges by this time, this time the process seemed much delayed this time.

The college directors have said that the PTU had always been advertising their notification for undergraduate courses well before the results of Plus Two students were declared. But this time they said that it had been more than 10 days that result of Plus Two students had been announced by the Punjab School Education Board whereas the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) was likely to come out with its result tonight, but no information about admission had yet been released.

Dr K.N.S. Kang, Director of Punjab College of Technical Education, said that the college had been receiving many queries pertaining to admission but the university had yet not come up with any information. He said that since Panjab University was to start admission to BCom, BBA and BCA in all its colleges from June 5, it could have an adverse effect on the admission to colleges of PTU.

Dr A.S. Bansal, Director of Guru Nanak Institute of Management and Technology, Model Town, said that he too had been awaiting a notification by the university for quite some time. He said that he had even opened up an admission cell at his college but without a brochure from the university, the faculty was finding it difficult to guide the candidates properly.

Prof G.S. Dua, Director of Gujranwala Guru Nanak Institute of Management and Technology, Civil Lines, said that he was waiting for the university to release some information pertaining to admission so that the college could come out with a prospectus. He said that in case the process was delayed further, many colleges could find it difficult to fill all their seats this time.

Dr M.S. Grewal, Registrar of PTU, when contacted, said that since admission to BBA and BCA was in-house, he felt that there was no urgency in issuing a notification. He said that the university was currently concentrating on conducting entrance tests for candidates aspiring to take admission in B.Pharmacy and entry to engineering course. But he said that university would soon come out with a notification for BBA and BCA candidates as well.



Holiday destinations that beckon everyone
Asha Ahuja

Ludhiana, May 21
Now that summer vacation is here, people have started making holiday plans. However, they do not want to go to regular holiday destinations, rather they look for some exotic places to spend their time. Some of them may settle for adventure holidays, others may escape to some hill station, or decide to see architectural wonders of India or embark on wild trail holidays, or go on pilgrimage. Some of them may decide to visit a foreign country.

Some places in India have breathtakingly beautiful scenery. Many of these are not much frequented by tourists. If you are a nature lover, go out for exotic places. One such place is Ladakh. The scenic beauty is heady. One can go there by an Indian Airlines flight. It is advisable to check out weather conditions before packing your bags.

Another place worth visiting is Nagar. This small town has Nicholas Rorerich’s gallery, showcasing his paintings. A castle made of stones and wood is another attraction. It was built by Mandi King of the 15th century. The place is en route Manali. Ravalsar, which has a lake and some Tibetan monasteries, is also on way to Manali. Nature lovers would love these places.

Patnitop in Jammu has dense forests. All these places have precious little accommodation. Lonavala, Matheran, Mahabaleshwar in Maharashtra and Saputata, the only hill station in Gujarat, and Mount Abu in Rajasthan are also good holiday destination. Gangtok, Capital of Sikkim, is another good destination for holidays.

Those fond of seeing Indian architectural marvels can head towards Konark. The Sun Temple, with chariot wheels designed as a symbol of passage of time, by the picturesque seaside presents a marvellous scene. Mysore has beautiful palaces and museums. The forts of Rajasthan are breathtakingly beautiful. Madurai in South is a temple town and the Meenakshi Temple with its carved sculptures and pillars is a must see for those who want to have a peep into India’s past architectural wonders.

Coming to activity holidays, one has to decide on the activity one wants to take up. If one wants to have a taste of camel safari, then Jaisalmer or Bikaner is your destination. If cool waters pull you during summers, go for river rafting. The best rapids are at Rishikesh on way to Dehra Dun at Tons Valley and on way to Kulu.

Those fond of mountaineering must go to Himalayas. Head for Himachal Pradesh, Uttranchal or Sikkim. There is not better place for sea sports than Goa. For scuba diving, no place is better than Lakshadweep islands. If you like angling, go to Kashmir, Himachal Pradesh or Karnataka.

For wild trailings, one can go to the Corbett National Park in Uttar Pradesh. One can also visit the Ranthambore Natural Park, Rajasthan, to have a look at tigers, deer, crocodiles and pythons.

If money is no problem, Raj Bilas, Jaipur, Devigarh, Udaipur, Neem Rana Fort Palace, Punjab, are the places to spend your holidays. Ananda Fort, near Rishikesh, offers all comforts.

For those deciding in favour of holidays for shopping purposes, Singapore, Bangkok, Malaysia and Dubai are the places to visit. Head west to Switzerland or Venice for great holidays. Island happiness can be found in plenty in Maldives and Seychelles.

But, of course, the simplest way is to take your children to their nani’s or dadi’s house and let them get closer, while you can reshape and renew your relationships with your dotting parents.



70-year-old woman murdered
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 21
A 70-yr-old woman was allegedly murdered at Jagraon, near here, by an unidentified assailant at about 2.30 am today, who decamped with her earrings.
The police was informed by some neighbours that some person had entered the house of Ranjit Kaur in Agwar Ladhai and attacked her with sharp-edged weapons.

A police party reached the spot and found the old woman lying on the floor in a pool of blood. She had received three deep wounds on her throat, which had resulted in her death on the spot.

The woman had been living along for the past many years in her small house. One of her sons, Kamaljit Singh, works in Dubai. He used to visit her occasionally and his wife lived at Mohalla Balochan. The murderer reportedly scaled the boundary wall of the house and killed the woman.

He tried to escape via rooftops of neighbouring houses, but was noticed by her neighbour, who raised the alarm. On this, the assailant made good his escape.

The old woman eked a living by knitting sweaters. The murderer took away her earrings as he could not find anything valuable in the house. A case under Section 460 of the IPC was registered.



‘Allah megh de’
Our Correspondent

A woman scooterist covers face to beat the heat
A woman scooterist covers face to beat the heat in Ludhiana. — Photo by Sayyed Ahmad

Ludhiana, May 21
Roads and lanes in the city are virtually wearing a deserted look. Business centres are facing subdued activity. Frequent power cuts have made the life of residents hell. And lack of rain has added to their woes.

Passengers and commuters, in particular, are the most hard hit with restricted supply of water and a few water coolers installed at bus stands and railway stations.

Shopkeepers of various local markets are paying heavily for the water containers being supplied to them.

Residents of various wards, notably Nos. 23,25,52,58 and 62, have been protesting against the acute scarcity of water in their respective areas. Certain areas are even receiving dirty and contaminated water. It seems that no one wants to pay heed to their problem. The Municipal Corporation, instead of taking immediate remedial measures, is claiming that it was supplying water far in excess of the city’s actual need.

The civic body is reported to have chalked out an ambitious scheme of installing 54 ‘piaos’ on the pattern of Delhi. This will be implemented with the cooperation from certain advertising houses.

Interestingly, the predictions of many a weather pundit about a month ago that an unprecedented temperature rise in the region will lead to early pre-monsoon showers have not come true.

The dust haze that engulfed the region yesterday and which provided a bit of relief from the heat today settled down leading to rise in temperatures.

While the elderly choose to stay indoors, those who cannot be restricted to the four walls of a room take all possible precautions. Swimming pools in the town are also witnessing heavy rush in this regard . The nearby Gill canal has also gone dry and boys who used to come there to play are praying to the rain god.



‘Manmohan best suited for the top job’
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 20
A number of social, cultural and other organisations have welcomed the choice of Dr Manmohan Singh for the post of Prime Minister. These organisations said he was best qualified and suited to lead the country.

A meeting of the Indian Medical Association (IMA) here was held at Hero-DMC Heart Institute. The IMA congratulated Dr Manmohan Singh and said the IMA felt that this had brought confidence among the professional people of the country. The IMA also expressed gratitude to Ms Sonia Gandhi in this regard.

The IMA has also initiated a move to compile the data of all doctors in Ludhiana district by publishing medical yellow pages. This directory will contain the addresses of all doctors besides their specialties and facilities. It is to be released in July.

The Guru Gobind Singh Circle has also hailed the choice of Dr Manmohan Singh for primeministership. Deputy chief organiser of the circle Inderpal Singh said this had raised a lot of expectations for the people across the country.

Principal Ram Singh, chief organiser, and members Partap Singh, Ranjit Singh, Renuka Sarabjit Singh, Gurpmit Singh and Jatinderpal Singh have also hailed it.

Rana Bawa Singh Sansi, chairman, All-India Tribes Dal, Prof Mohan Singh Memorial Foundation, Ludhiana Machine Tool Makers Association, Ramgarhia Brotherhood have also welcomed it.



Talwandi hails Manmohan’s elevation
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, May 21
Two senior leaders of the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) today hailed the choice of Dr Manmohan Singh as the next Prime Minister of the country and congratulated him for the same.

Mr Jagdev Singh Talwandi, former president of the SGPC and former president of the Shiromani Akali Dal, said the move was laudable as it would lead to end of bitterness between the Sikhs and the Congress.

He described Dr Manmohan Singh as an honest and competent politician and hoped the nation would progress under his leadership.

Mr Surjan Singh Thekedar, patron of the Shiromani Akali Dal, also welcomed the Congress decision to elevate Dr Manmohan Singh to the post of Prime Minister. Ms Sonia Gandhi had put forward an example of sacrifice by declining the post.



BJP workers hold meeting
Our Correspondent

Khanna, May 21
A meeting of the BJP Khanna Mandal was held at the residence of its president, Mr Sarvdeep Kalirao, here today. The meeting was held under the presidentship Mr Hans Raj Sood, president of the BJP Ludhiana (Rural).

According to a press note issued by Mr Sudhir Sonu, press secretary of the Khanna Mandal, Mr Ranjit Singh Libra, son of the newly elected Member of Parliament, Mr Sukhdev Singh Libra, was the chief guest. Mr Libra thanked the BJP workers for ensuring the success of SAD candidate in the parliamentary elections. He said an office would be opened to meet the demands and grievances of the SAD and BJP workers.

The meeting was also addressed by Mr Sanjiv Dhamija, Mr Amrit Lal, Mr Jaspal Lotey, Mr Satish Verma, Mr Mohinder Pal Jassal, Dr Amar Chand, Mr Ram Parkash Mehta, Mr Rajneesh Bedi, Mr Jatinder Nagpal, Mr Harpal Singh, Mr Darshan Singh and some other prominent workers of the party.



Rajiv Gandhi remembered
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 21
The martyrdom day of former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi was observed as anti-terrorism day in the district today.
An impressive function was organised in the committee room of the mini-secretariat under the chairmanship of Deputy Commissioner Anurag Verma.

He said the objective behind the observing of this day as anti-terrorism day was to wean people away, particularly the youth, from terrorism by highlighting the suffering of the people.

He said Rajiv Gandhi had sacrificed life for the nation and one should take inspiration from his martyrdom.

He added that terrorism was a threat to mankind. He appealed to the people to fight the menace unitedly.

He administered oath to all members present at the function to oppose all forms of terrorism and violence and fight the forces of disruption. Mr Ajmer Singh, Additional Deputy Commissioner, Mr R.K. Jaiswal SP(H), Mr Prem Chand, SDM(East), Mr M.S. Sandhu, DTO, Mr Tarlochan Singh Sahota, ADTO, were also present on the occasion. 



People recall association with Satprakash Grewal
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 21
Tributes were paid to late Satparkash Singh Grewal on his thirteenth death anniversary here today. A simple and solemn function was organised by senior Congress leader Jagpal Singh Khangura at the Samrala chowk. An akhand path was organised on the occasion, followed by langar.

Paying tributes to Grewal the speakers recalled his untiring services for society. People recalled their association with him.

Grewal was a senior Congress leader who had close association with Indira Gandhi, Partap Singh Kairon, Giani Zail Singh, Darbara Singh and Rajiv Gandhi.

Mr Khangura said Grewal had always remained a sincere and dedicated Congress worker. He added that the best tribute would be to follow the path shown by him.

Several of Grewal’s associates also attended the function. Among others present on the occasion included general secretary of the Pardesh Youth Congress Gurinder Sing Grewal. 



Readers Write
 Performance alone matters

Sewage in Oswal street on the Gill Road is choked and overflowing for the past many days, making the life of residents miserable. Wires are left dangling from poles to be uprooted. Residents of Kucha No.16 held a dharna over insanitary conditions in the area on Monday. In another incident, a worm slithered out of a Municipal Corporation tap in Urban Estate, Jamalpur. Frequent power cuts belie the tall claims of the PSEB.

With such misgovernance, no wonder the ruling Congress had to bring in an outsider for fighting the Lok Sabha elections for the Ludhiana constituency. It is high time politicians should understand that it is performance alone which matters and can help them win in the elections. Public interest should be their priority and they should try to mitigate the sufferings of the people. Major S.S. Khosla



Police seeks help in implementing plan
Our Correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh, May 20
The Sangrur police has sought cooperation from local traders and industrialists of the area with regard to implementation of the social policing scheme.

Mr Gurinder Singh Dhillon, SSP, Sangrur, said the scheme was being launched to beep up security in view of recent incidents of loot and arson. “We have identified 249 ex-servicemen who would be imparted special training at the police headquarters,” he said. Seeking cooperation from businessmen, the SSP suggested that industrialists and traders should employ these exservicemen. 


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