L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Gang of thieves busted, mobiles recovered
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, June 28
The city police today claimed to have busted a gang of thieves, according to an unsigned press note here.
The police arrested Vijay Kumar, alias Sony, of Street No. 6 of Guru Amar Dass Colony, Giaspura; Anil Kumar, hailing from Gango Thana village in Saharnpur, Uttar Pradesh, and currently living in Street No. 5 of New Janta Nagar; Mooli, a migrant from Patna and currently living in Dhillon Nagar at Shimla Puri; Bau Rai, a migrant from Bihar and currently living in Janak Puri; and Bablu, a migrant from UP. Mr Narinderpal Singh, SSP, said the thieves were arrested during a barricade set up in the main bazaar of Vijay Nagar on the Oswal road by ASI Ajit Singh, in charge of Janak Puri police post last evening. Thirty eight stolen mobile phones, 16 SIM cards and a colour Texla television set were recovered from their possession.

According to Inspector Harjinder Singh, SHO, Division No. 6 police station, the accused confessed during the investigation that they used to pry open the shutters of shops at night to enable a young boy to sneak into the shop. The others roamed outside the shops carrying torchlights to mislead any onlookers into believing that they were night watchmen. After completing the job, they would lift the shutter again to enable the boy to come out with the booty comprising mobile phone and cash.

The alleged thieves also confessed to the involvement of Kallu, Rinku, Raju, now living in fish market at Sherpur. The police said it was on a lookout for these persons.

The miscreants reportedly confessed to having committed 27 thefts in various localities of the city, including Janak Puri, Model Town, Daba village, Jamalpur, Gias Pura, Dhandari, Focal Point, Janta Nagar, Shimla Puri, Daresi grounds, near the Aarti cinema and in the area falling under the jurisdiction of Division No. 6 police station.

Further revelations and more recoveries were expected after the remand of the accused was obtained, added the press note.



BJP stages dharna for better amenities
Our Correspondent

A child carries a placard during a BJP dharna against the MC in Ludhiana
A child carries a placard during a BJP dharna against the MC in Ludhiana on Monday. — Photo by Sayeed Ahmad

Ludhiana, June 28
The district unit of the BJP today staged a dharna at the MC headquarters here to register protest against the adjournment of general house meeting, held after a long gap, without conducting any business. The party alleged that many vital issues of public interest ought to be discussed on the floor of the House and threatened to launch an agitation if the meeting was not convened within next 10 days.

The party functionaries and councillors, speaking at the occasion, alleged that in the past over two years, not a single colony had been regularised and as a result, many localities, most of them represented by BJP and SAD councillors, were not being provided basic amenities and lacked other necessary development works. The BJP leaders regretted that the MC had not initiated any steps for cleaning of open drains and sewers lines, which was earlier done every year before the onset of rainy season.

Speakers, including district president, Dr Subhash Verma, general secretary Ashok Loomba, Om Parkash Bhardwaj and group leader of BJP councillors Parveen Bansal further maintained that sanitary conditions prevailing in the city left much to be desired as the MC was, at an average, lifting only 60 per cent of the total garbage generated in the city. It also wanted removal of encroachments on covered drains and sewer lines, which hindered the task of periodic cleaning.

The BJP impressed upon the MC administration to set up sub committees of elected representatives from all major parties to improve the working and to speed up the completion of several projects like elevated road, Dhandari Railway Overbridge, Flyover to replace Lakkar Pul and road along the Budha Nullah.



The inside story of BJP dharna against MC
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, June 28
There is certainly more to it than meets the eye in the dharna staged by the BJP councillors at the headquarters of Municipal Corporation here today. The dharna was purportedly organised to demand the general house meeting within next 10 days so that issues of public interest could be raised on the floor of the house.

However, documents in possession of Ludhiana Tribune suggest that the protest was, at best, a diversionary tactics in the face of a D.O. letter issued by the department of Local Government, Punjab, received here on Friday last on the subject of 'enlistment of contractors in the urban local bodies (ULBs) which directed all ULBs to comply with the earlier instructions on close relatives of councillors as well as civic officials working as contractors in the MC.

The D.O. letter issued by Mr G.R. Bansal, Additional Secretary of the Local Government Department, observed that the ULBs were not properly following the provisions of law, rules and government instructions. Quoting rule 8 of the Punjab Municipal General Rules, 1979, it further said no person, who is a kin of any councillor, officer, official of the local body, can be enlisted as contractor in the concerned urban local body.

The ULBs have been asked by the department to ensure the compliance of these statutory provisions and government instructions at the time of enlistment, renewal of license of contractors. "An affidavit may be taken from applicant contractors in this regard at the time of his enlistment and renewal of licence. The councillors may also be intimated that any violation of the above stated provisions shall amount to flagrant abuse of their position as councillors and as such are liable to face penal action of removal from their posts as envisaged under Sections 16 and 36 of the Punjab Municipal Act 1911 and the Punjab Municipal Corporation Act 1976 respectively. Similarly, officers concerned shall also face disciplinary action." The ULBs have been further asked to send compliance report by July 15, 2004 positively.

On getting the wind of the circular, which had been forwarded to the officials concerned for submitting a report and further compliance, some of the BJP councillors were learnt to have been greatly upset as their close relatives were enlisted and working as contractors in the MC here. Among them were the son and a cousin brother of two different councillors. Since the general house meeting called on June 25 was adjourned after making obituary references, the BJP councillors also had a valid ground to press for holding the adjourned meeting at an early date.

The consensus among the party councillors was that by lodging a public protest, they would be in a position to build enough pressure on the MC top brass to once again stall the follow up action on the directions, as had been done in January 2000 earlier.



Protest against militant outfits
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, June 28
Activists of the All-India Anti-Terrorist Front (AIATF) today took out a protest march against the killing of 12 persons by terrorists in Poonch district of Jammu and Kashmir recently.

Raising slogans against militant outfits and Pakistan-sponsored cross-border terrorism, the protesters, led by Mr Yogesh Diwan, state secretary general, and Mr Anil Sharma, district president, commenced the march from Chand Cinema and went up to Old Sabzi Mandi Chowk. A rally was organised there against terrorism.

Mr Dewan alleged terrorist training camps were still functioning in PoK and the military rulers of Pakistan continued to lend overt and covert support to militant outfits to disturb peace and tranquility in India.

He said terrorism could not be rooted out in Jammu and Kashmir or elsewhere till the Union Government adopted tough line to deal with militants. “Soft approach or the so-called healing touch is not going to work at all, at least in this particular case,” he said.

He urged the government to provide sophisticated weapons to the village defence committees in Jammu and Kashmir so that they were in a position to defend themselves against attacks by terrorists. He said Pakistan appeared to be hell-bent on creating a state of disorder and anarchy in India and the prevailing scenario called for adopting a hard line.

Among others, Mr Bishan Singh Dhiman, state secretary, Mr Dheeraj Kumar, district vice-president, Mr Rajesh Vaid and Mr Raj Kumar were also present on the occasion.



Sonia’s ‘PA’ takes babus for a ride
Vimal Sumbly
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 28
Two middle-rung officials in the local administration were taken for a ride by one Amandeep Mittal, who claimed to be the personal assistant (PA) of the Congress President, Ms Sonia Gandhi. The self-proclaimed PA of Ms Gandhi was accorded state hospitality with two officers being assigned the job to take care of him. However, feeling apprehensive that he might be caught, the “PA” made a quiet exit, leaving behind the “obedient” officials.

It was learnt that Amandeep Mittal of Jalandhar district arrived here yesterday and rang up some officials in the district administration. He introduced himself as the PA of Ms Gandhi. He claimed that he had been deputed on a special mission by the party President to get confidential reports about the performance of different leaders during the last Lok Sabha elections.

Interestingly and quite intelligently he did not inform any of the Congress leaders about his arrival in the city lest he should be identified and caught. Instead he tried to make the ever “obedient” and unsuspecting officials believe that he was on a secret mission and did not want any of the political leaders to know about it.

Some of the officials found the opportunity as God sent. They started obliging him right from his arrival. He was provided an official car with a police escort. The two officials who were deputed on duty reportedly did everything possible to keep him in good humour so that they might be adequately compensated. One of the officials even did not mind to betray his motives and straightway requested the “PA” to take up his case with the government.

As the news spread in official and political circles that Ms Gandhi’s PA was in the town, inquiries started pouring in. Some leaders even tried to trace the PA so that they could win an audience with him. A local Congress leader disclosed that he thought it might have been Mr Vincent George himself. “But that would have been quite an event in itself”, said the leader adding, “still I tried to inquire”. Everybody was surprised and none of them had heard Amandeep’s name till now. It was only later in the day that he was traced to a village in Jalandhar, where he had earlier been reprimanded for falsely claiming himself to be the block president.

Inquiries by Ludhiana Tribune revealed that Amandeep happened to be related to someone working in the Grievance Redressal Committee of the Congress President Ms Sonia Gandhi. He not only tried to flaunt this connection but went a step ahead, claiming himself to be the PA of Ms Gandhi and making babus toe his line.



Mystery over poisoning of labourers
Our Correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh, June 28
Mystery shrouds the poisoning of four migrant labourers, two of whom have died at a private hospital in Ludhiana. The others are struggling for life at the Dayanand Medical Hospital (DMC) here.

Police sources confirmed that Subodh Kumar (35) and Chhotu (18) of Bela village in Purnea district of Bihar died of poisoning, while Chitranjan and Sukhra of the same village were struggling for life at the DMC.

Policemen investigating the case said the four migrant labourers had cooked and eaten rice at the farm of Jarnail Singh of Dango village on Friday evening. They started vomiting late in the night and were taken to a hospital at Sarabha village. The doctors there referred them to the DMC as their condition was serious.

Subodh Kumar and Chhotu reportedly died at the hospital on Friday and Sunday, respectively. The bodies of the deceased were handed over to the members of their families.

Chitranjan had been working at the farm of Jarnail Singh for over a year. Chhotu joined him recently while Subodh and his son Sukhra had come in search of job just a day before the incident. The four reportedly consumed some poisonous substance in cooking rice.



PAU changes eligibility rules for College of Home Science
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 28
The PAU authorities have changed the eligibility rules for admission to its B.Sc. Home Science (Honours) four year programme.
According to the varsity sources, earlier the candidates having only science subjects at class XII level could apply for admission to this course but now the candidates who have taken up arts with home science at the same level are also eligible to apply for the admission to this course.

Dr (Ms) M K Dhillon, Dean, College of Home Science, informed that this change would be of immense value to girls in rural areas since there is a dearth of schools teaching science subjects in the villages of Punjab. She said the College of Home Science is committed to improve the quality of life of rural families through its teaching, research and extension programmes.

Apart from B.Sc. Home Science (Hons) programme, the college is running one- year diploma courses in interior decoration, fashion designing, food preservation and baking as well as management of creche and nursery school. 



Atwal releases directory on Punjab heroes
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 28
Lok Sabha Deputy Speaker Charanjit Singh Atwal released a directory on the heroes of Punjab at Ramgarhia College here yesterday. The directory has been brought out by the Talented Womens’ Research Library run by Dr Harpreet Kaur.

Addressing students on the occasion, he said people who forgot their heroes were bound to repeat history. The communities that registered all-round development were the ones that cherished and respected their past.

He said Dr Harpreet Kaur had done a great service to the people by undertaking the arduous task and taking it to its logical end.

The directory would be an eye-opener to the new generation since they would be educated by the hitherto unknown contributions of the community, he added.

He said the directory listed those who had contributed in the fields of science, culture, religion, social service or stirring the consciousness of the masses. Such books were far and few in between and reading them was a must for the current generation, he stressed.

Mr Atwal said: “Such books are like a beacon in our lives. The present generation has no idea of our rich past and is being swayed by western values.”

Dr Harpreet Kaur said after years of research she had complied the contributions of 248 personalities, which had left a lasting impact on our lives, of the region. Besides, brief information about the lives and times of the 10 Sikh Gurus, four Sahibzadas and the five temporal seats of the faith had been provided.

She emphasised that special care had been taken to list the contribution of Sikh women like Mata Tripta, Bebe Nanki, Mata Sulakhni, Mata Gujri, Bibi Bhani, Bibi Roop Kaur, Mata Sahib Kaur and Mata Sundri. A mention of age-old musical instruments of the region has also been recorded for posterity, she pointed out.



Recarpeting of roads begins
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, June 28
The Municipal Corporation launched a project for resurfacing main roads of Gurdev Nagar locality here today. The project would cost Rs 10 lakh.
The recarpeting work was inaugurated by the area councillor, Ms Amrit Varsha Rampal, as the City Mayor, Mr Nahar Singh Gill, arrived late at the function.

Speaking on the occasion, Ms Rampal said work had already commenced for laying storm water sewerage in Block I of Sarabha Nagar. Sodium lights were in the process of being installed in Gurdev Nagar and Jagjit Nagar colonies. Tender had already been invited for the work.

She said other development projects in the pipeline for the area included the widening of the convent school road and the Gurdev Nagar road, construction of boundary wall around Leisure Valley and sinking of a new tubewell near Guru Nanak Public School to augment water supply.

Prominent among those present pm the occasion were Mr Harnam Singh Machhiwara, Mr B.K. Rampal, Mr D.K. Jain, Mr J.S. Garcha, Mr Sat pal Sharma, Mr Manjeet Singh Matharoo, Mr N.S. Sidhu, Mr K.K. Bagai, Mr P.K. Puri, Mr Ravinder Sehgal and Dr Devinderjit Singh Walia.



Illicit liquor seized
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, June 28
Ram Singh of Kotumra was arrested while he was distilling illicit liquor in the fields. The police seized 150 kg of lahan, 9.180 litre distilled illicit liquor along with some parts of the still. A case under Sections 61, 1 and 14 of the Excise Act has been registered.

Gang of cheats busted: With the arrest of a member of a gang of cheats, the police claims to have busted the gang. The Sidhwanbet police, on an information that a gang of cheats is active in the area and alluring the people to double their money, registered a case under Section 420.

On the information that Bachan Singh of Chakarwal Jhuggi, Fazilka post office, Gujan Singh of Rajapur, Sadar Ludhiana, Swaran Singh of Patrewala Khera, Ferozepore district , Surjit Singh of Vehran, Lakha Singh, alias Lakhi, of Guruhar Sahai, had deprived Bakhshish Singh of Shafipura of Rs 2,50,000 on the allurement to double his amount and now were again present at his house to cheat Bakhshish Singh and others, the police raided the house of the victim and arrested Bachan Singh. The other gang member escaped.

Opium seized: Lakhwinder Singh of Khanjjarwal was arrested and 500gm of opium seized from his scooter. A case under Sections 18,61 and 85 of the NDPS Act has been registered and the scooter impounded.



Three killed in road mishaps
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, June 28
On the statement of Mr Mool Chand, a migrant from Madhya Pradesh now living near the New Courts, the Model Town police yesterday registered a case under sections 304-A and 427 of the IPC against the driver of a car who knocked down a cyclist near a culvert adjoining Ghawaddi village on Sunday morning and sped away from the scene. The cyclist, Vijay Kumar, brother of the complainant, died on the spot. No arrest has been made so far.

The Sahnewal police registered two cases under sections 279 and 304-A of the IPC yesterday.

The first case was registered on the statement of Bhanu Kumar, a Bihari migrant now living at Veer Palace on the Chandigarh Road, against an unknown truck driver who hit a relative of the complainant Sanjay on the Chandigarh Road on Saturday evening and sped away. Sanjay was admitted to a hospital where he succumbed to the injuries on Sunday. No arrest has been made so far.

The other case was registered on the statement of Mr. Mohammad Sufi, who hails from J and K against the driver of a Maruti car bearing a temporary registration. The complainant had stated that the accused had hit Mohammad Yusuf near a dhaba on the Chandigarh Road. Yusuf, who was rushed to the CMC Hospital, died during treatment, added the complainant.

Held with smack: The Shimla Puri police yesterday arrested Charanjit Singh, a resident of Jamalpur, recovered 8 gm of smack from his possession and registered a case under the NDPS Act against him.

Killed: The Salem Tabri police yesterday registered a case under Sections 302 and 34 of the IPC on the statement of Mr Gulzari Ram, a resident of Hazuri Bagh Colony at Bhattian bet village, against an unknown persons.

The complainant had stated that the accused had murdered an unknown person and threw the body, packed in plastic sack, in a field near the colony before it was discovered on Sunday. The police is groping in the dark.

Assaulted: The Civil Lines police yesterday registered a case under sections 341, 323, 324, 506 and 34 of the IPC on the statement of Mr Rakesh Kumar, a resident of Basant Vihar in Salem Tabri, against Bhushan Jain, his son Amit Jain and Jawahar Jain, who live in the same locality.

The complainant had stated that the accused had intercepted him in front of the New Courts on Saturday and beaten him up as a result of which he was injured. the accused threatened him as well, added the complainant. No arrest has been made so far.

Pickpocket held: The Shimla Puri police yesterday arrested Surinder Kumar, who lives near the Matharoo chowk in Har Krishan Nagar and registered case under sections 379 and 411 of the IPC.

The police said today that five gents purses containing various amounts of money which had been stolen by the accused, were recovered from his possession.

Robbery: The Division Number 6 police yesterday registered a case under Sections 342,506,323,380,148 and 149 of the IPC on the statement of Mr Madan Lal Sharma, who lives near the Manju Cinema in Miller Ganj, against Laxman Bahadur, who hails from Garhwal and two of his cronies.

The complainant had stated that the accused tied him up and stole Rs 44,000 from the premises of the Panjab Handloom Textile Corporation showroom. The culprits made good their escape after locking him in the showroom, added the complainant. No arrest has been made so far.

Land grab: On the statement of Mr. Harmesh Khullar, SDO and Mr. Roshan lal Sharma, ADO, PUDA, the division number 7 police yesterday registered a case under sections 447,448,511,149 and 120_B of the IPC against Mohinder Singh, Gaba and Chhote la Pardhan.

The complainants had stated that the accused were trying to occupy PUDA land in front of Sacred Heart Convent School in Sector-39 by constructing a gurdwara building on the same on Saturday. No arrest has been made so far.

Liquor seized: The Division Number 2 police yesterday arrested Sagar, a migrant from Bihar, recovered 11 bottles of country liquor from him and registered a case under the Excise Act against him. The accused was nabbed near the culvert in Issa Nagri, said the police.



Flour millers’ delegation to visit Lanka
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 28
A delegation of the Roller Flour Millers Federation of India led by its president, Mr Gopal Bhushan Gupta, will be going to Sri Lanka to discuss the modalities of wheat export to that country with officials of the Sri Lankan government. The delegation has been specially invited by the government of Sri Lanka for this purpose.

Disclosing this here today, the president of the federation, Mr Gupta, who is also the vice-chairman of the Indo-Pak Roller Flour Millers Confederation, said that other members of the delegation include Mr Prem Gupta, Mr Datta Raj, Mr Raj Kumar Garg, Mr Prem Goyal and Mr Nitin Gupta. The Sri Lankan High Commissioner in India will also accompany the delegation.

Mr Gupta said that this will help in exploring the possibilities of the export of wheat products to Sri Lanka. This will be of much economic interest to Punjab in particular where abundant stocks of wheat are lying unutilised in the godowns.


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