L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Triple murder case: accused’s parents, brother also booked
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 6
The triple murder case that has rocked the city during the past two days took a surprise turn today when the Basti Jodhewal police booked the parents and a brother of the accused gunman Jarnail Singh for conspiring the crime.

There was tension again in the New Subash Nagar locality as a large number of persons gathered to attend the cremation of the third victim, Pulinder Nishad, a migrant from Bihar. The mourners tried to block traffic on the Jalandhar bypass, but the police prevented them.

The police seemed to have buckled under the pressure of family members of the three deceased who had been agitating since Monday for registering the case against family members.

The names of the gunman's father Sadhu Singh, mother Paramjit Kaur and brother Kulwinder Singh were included in the FIR.

Police sources admitted that additions in the FIR were made to pacify the victims' family members and their supporters.

Heart-rending scenes were witnessed at the cremation of the migrant labourer who was caught in the crossfire. Nishad's two brothers had died recently. While one died after falling from a roof, another was run over by a vehicle. Nishad was the only breadwinner in the family.

Heavy police force was deployed in the New Subash Nagar and Basti Jodhewal areas for several hours following a fresh demonstration by relatives of Nishad.

The police had sent Nishad's body for post-mortem to the Sahnewal Civil Hospital for preventing mourners to join hands with mourners of other two victims.

Nishad's cremation was also delayed as a large number of sympathisers could have caused law and order problems.

The police also deployed additional security at the house of the accused following an attack by relatives of the deceased yesterday.

The attackers tried to put the house on fire but succeeded in breaking doors and windowpanes. Some damage was caused to the furniture and other household items. The police is likely to book attackers in this regard, the sources said.



Railway Budget evokes mixed response 
Kuldip Bhatia

Ludhiana, July 6
The Railway Budget, which the Union Railway Minister presented today in the Lok Sabha claiming it was pro-poor Budget evoked mixed response in the industrial hub of the state with many people terming it as unrealistic and devoid of adequate resources for massive plans of infrastructure development and gauge conversion.

Dr R. Chawla, a medical teacher agreed with Mr Laloo Prasad Yadav that the Budget was pro-people. “The rail travel in air-conditioned coaches for upper middle class people has been becoming costlier with every rail Budget but Mr Yadav has been kind to this particular class, which has been bearing the entire burden of hikes,” he remarked.

The Railway Minister has done very well to provide the facility of free rail travel to unemployed youth travelling for interviews, said a college student Rohit. “The educated unemployed youth have to travel a lot in search of employment and to take part in interviews. The process would no more make a hole in the pockets of our parents,” he said.

The trade and industry were jubilant over the fact that much apprehended hike in freight rates did not come. Several associations of traders and industrialists, particularly those belonging to small and tiny sector, heaved a sigh of relief that transportation of goods and raw material through rail would not involve any additional financial burden.

Mr Ramesh Joshi, a Congress activist and director of Punjab Pollution Control Board said the Congress-led coalition government had come true to its commitment with no hike in rail fares or freight rates. He said the Railway Minister had announced several concessions in rail travel for widows of defence personnel killed in action, physically challenged persons and their escorts, unemployed youth and haemophiliac patients, which were most welcome and needed.

A hosiery manufacturer, Mr Amrit Lal Aggarwal, was of the view that besides making rail travel more safe, the government should provide more number of trains on trunk routes to ease out congestion and give more facilities, both on board and on railway stations to the passengers.

Mr Ashok Juneja, a leading taxation lawyer and chairman of the trade wing of Bhartiya Janata Party, however, reacted in a different manner. He said rail travel had no longer remained safe with number of accidents going up alarmingly. 



Harassed by husband, woman tries to end life
Tribune News Service

Rekha Ludhiana, July 6
Rekha (27), daughter of a Haibowal-based cycle mechanic, allegedly harassed by her husband, his elder brother and sister-in-law, set herself ablaze on July 3. She is oscillating between life and death at DMC Hospital.

Doctors fear that she might not survive as almost all her organs are burnt and she is in coma. The shocked family is, however, hoping for a miracle.

A mother of a three-year-old son, Rekha was not happy with her husband and in-laws. She was allegedly harassed and subjected to mental torture. She had told about her strained relationships to her parents a number of times but they had been hopeful that things would improve.

In her statement to the police, she alleged that she had attempted suicide as her life had been made hell by her husband and in-laws. She said her husband was not sound financially and the couple had fights as he used to give money to his brother.

On July 3, the couple had a fight and Rekha doused herself with kerosene and set herself ablaze. She was rushed to the Civil Hospital, Moga, by her husband. Her parents brought her to DMC Hospital.

The police has booked her husband Satish Kumar, his elder brother Sudarshan Kumar and his wife Manju under Sections 306 and 511, IPC. Satish has been arrested but the other accused are absconding.

"Had I known that my daughter would be killed, I would have brought her home. Now I have brought her son with me and I will not give him back to his father. I am surprised why did she kill herself. She was not like this. She was loved by all of us,’’ her father said.

Her mother Phoolan Devi was inconsolable. ‘‘I am yet to come to terms with reality. Only a fortnight ago she had visited me and we had been talking throughout the night. What has she done? I cannot even speak to her. She is lying in a coma, not responding to anybody. I want her to talk to me once. Nobody in the world can understand the pain of a mother who has lost her young daughter,’’ she said.



Inquiry ordered into bribe charge
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 6
The city police today ordered an inquiry against a Head Constable for allegedly demanding bribe from an undertrial at bakshi khana in the new district courts complex here today for allowing him to call up his relatives.

The undertrial, Desh Raj, facing trial in a murder case, was also allegedly injured in a scuffle with the accused Head Constable, Joginder Singh. However, the police said that the undertrial had injured him by banging his head repeatedly against the iron-bars in the door of the bakshi khana room.

The police has made an entry into the Daily Diary Report (DDR), which would be converted into an FIR if the allegations of bribery and beating were proved in the inquiry, DSP Ravcharan Singh Brar said.

The undertrial alleged that he had requested the Head Constable to let him make a phone call but he demanded a bribe of few hundred rupees. He and the Head Constable exchanged abuses when the undertrial was not allowed to call anyone. He suffered head injuries and was provided medical treatment later in a hospital.



Ludhiana Calling

The Punjab Police has been harping on the concept of community policing but a response from the public is found wanting. There has been a spate in robbery and snatching incidents in the city but people have just refused to take precautions advised by the cops. The police has been trying hard to tell residents not carrying cash while walking or traveling on two wheelers but people still continue to do so. One wonders how industrialists can take the risk of transacting lakh of rupees and not spend a few hundred or thousand of rupees in getting a security guard. After all, the 5000-odd cops cannot provide security to over 35 lakh residents.

Bye pass or bypass

One cannot expect Indians to be perfect in the Queen’s language, no wonder than the spellings on sign boards continue to be wrong for months till someone points it outs. The Ludhiana administration, in trying to provide directions to commuters, has wrongly spelt ‘bypass’ as ‘bye pass’ . As per the dictionary bypass is a noun, which is used for a road, passing, round a town or its centre to provide an alternative route for through traffic. These days more than a road bypass people are more familiar with the term ‘a heart bypass’, which is a verb. But many react to wrongly spelt words by saying how does it matter as long as you understand what it means, after all English continues to remain a foreign language.

‘Powerless' people

As the mercury keeps soaring and the monsoons nowhere in sight, the life of Ludhianvis has become miserable with drastic power cuts being imposed by the PSEB to meet the increased demand of the farm sector. Right from early mornings, during afternoon, evenings and even late at nights, the power goes off for anything between half an hour to one had a half hour and the people literally sweat it out, be it the time for the morning bath, afternoon siesta time or dinner time. To add to the woes of the city population, there are unscheduled cuts, shut downs for maintenance or breakdowns. With the power playing truant, the water supply, being directly dependent on urban or industrial feeders, as the case might be, depending on the locality, is also disrupted and most of the times, the people are not only ‘powerless’ but waterless as well.

Man’s cruelty

Trees are the benefactors of mankind - giving us shade, fruits, wood for furniture, help in giving rain, and help in pollination, yet man is its worst enemy. The bare trees tell about the man’s cruelty towards environment of which trees are a major part. Due to land pollution, the trees start decaying. They die a slow death. There are hundred of trees that have died. By being careless, we are robbing the birds of a place to make their nests. Temperatures are rising as forest cover is decreasing. The cities are becoming jungles of concrete and losing the natural beauty. Let us resolve to plant one tree on every important occasion of our lives.

Stray dog menace

The city is in the grip of a big menace of stray dogs with the solution to the ‘canine’ problem remaining elusive. There has been scores of mishaps in a large number of city localities where small children have been bitten and seriously injured by the dogs, who at times, become so aggressive that even the grown up people find it difficult to stand up to their aggressive postures. The civic administration expresses its helplessness to come to the rescue of the city residents with the plea that its hands are tied as bodies like People for Animals and laws prevent cruelty against animals. The district authorities had mooted a plan for a concerted campaign to sterlise stray dogs to curb their population but it does not appear to have made much headway till now.

Traffic chaos

Leisure Valley, a lovely landscaped park, a walker’s delight, has been fully developed. Slowly its popularity has increased and people have started coming in droves for walking. Since people have started coming in large numbers, many smart operators have set up small businesses in front of the valley. There are balloon sellers, ice cream sellers. Some carry portable swings wherein the kids up to 5 years can take a ride. Almost half the road is blocked cars too are parked haphazardly. On Sundays, the scene looks like a ‘mela’ but for commuters it is a nightmare to move. Traffic police should be posted at strategic points so that the traffic moves smoothly

Cut fruit

Despite of gastroenteritis, cut fruit is being sold openly everywhere. It seems the Administration is just not bothered to check this violation. The DC has declared a ban on sale of open fruit. Open fruit is considered to be the biggest source of infection. Instead of attractive pieces of watermelon, sold openly, one sees golden colored mango and papaya pieces instead. Due to heat, one feels tempted to eat, and ends up having gastroenteritis. Many man-hours are wasted when the ailing people do not report for work. But who cares? If the law was enforced strictly, many people would have been spared the pain and a lot many hours would be spared.

PAU security

The Punjab Agricultural University authorities have been taking a lot of security measures to prevent outsiders from entering the campus without any work inside the varsity. But the more such measures are taken; more embarrassing security-failure incidents take place. Recently the university spent thousands of rupees in constructing a long wall on the south city and canal side end to prevent people from entering the campus. This system, however, failed within days when three outsiders lured a Bihar migrant into the university campus and stabbed him to death. The varsity authorities were left trying to figure out the chinks in the armour. May be now the authorities erect a higher wall or install live electricity wire on the wall.


This is a real philosophic one written at the rear of a truck, ‘‘ Neki kar, chhittar kha; mein vi khadhe, tun vee kha! (Do good, earn brickbat. I got them so shall you!).




Undertrials protest against water shortage
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 6
The city police today had to rush additional personnel to the bakshikhana in the new district courts complex to control 150-odd undertrials who were protesting against the non-supply of adequate potable water.

The undertrials were already upset with certain cops posted there for allowing select undertrials to meet their relatives or make phone calls. As the mercury began rising at noon, the undertrials began demanding drinking water and raised slogans.

The undertrials jostled with one another for a few minutes to quench their thirst with the small quantity of water provided to them. However, as the supply was far less from the required quantity, they began quarrelling with one another and later started banging the doors of the bakshikhanna.

The SP (City-I),Mr Mandeep Singh, and the DSP,Mr R.S. Brar, reached the scene with additional personnel and brought the situation under control. Later, a meeting took place between the police officials and acting Sessions Judge Inderjit Kaushik to sort out the problem.

Sources said the problem was a recurrent one. It becomes difficult to provide adequate water to undertrials if their number crosses 100. 



Book on city’s history released
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, July 6
The last 100 years' history of the city, compiled in a Punjabi book "Ludhiana bolda hai", written by Shiromani Sahitkar Dr Atam Hamrahi, was released at a function organised by the Vishwa Punjabi Sabhyacharak Manch, here today.

Addressing the function, Mr Jagdev Singh Jassowal, a former legislator and president of the manch, remarked that people make history but did not make efforts to preserve it. He said Dr Hamrahi had done a great service to the people and institutions which had made significant contribution towards the growth of the city during the last century.

He said compilation of this monumental work in the face of odds and difficulties spoke volumes about the 'pen power' of the author. Mr Jassowal further said the manch would make all-out attempts to make this book available to Punjabi settled all over the globe. A Punjabi convention being held in the first week of August in Pakistan would also focus on the book.

Mr Krishan Kumar Bawa, president, Malwa Sabhyacharak Manch, congratulated Dr Hamrahi for writing the book, which, he expressed confidence, would turn out to be a big literary treasure for coming generations. He made a fervent appeal to all educational institutions to add this book to their respective libraries since it was truly a golden leaf of the history of the great city.

The secretary of the Baba Farid Foundation and young artist Nirmal Jaura said the entire Punjabi brotherhood, especially the people of Ludhiana, would always remain indebted to Dr Hamrahi for adroitly describing the entire history of the city in mere 400-odd pages of the book, which was a remarkable literary feat.

Mr Jassowal, Mr Bawa and Mr Jaura presented mementoes to Dr Hamrahi on behalf of their respective literary bodies. In his thanksgiving speech, Dr Hamrahi expressed gratitude to the literary bodies and

fellow writers for the honour bestowed upon him. He said for quite some time, he was feeling withering away in isolation. "But the enthusiastic response given to my book has recharged my energy."

Prominent among others present at the function were Prof Mohinder Singh Cheema, Mr Jaswant Singh Chhapa, Mr Watanjit Singh Grewal, Mr Pawan Diwan, Mr Kanwaljit Shankar and Dr Gurcharan Singh Sek.



PWD employees hold rally
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 6
In protest against the arrest of officials of the PWD in the alleged bitumen scam, hundreds of employees of the department organised a rally in front of the main gate of their office here today. The dharna continued for two hours.

It was addressed by several employee leaders. Rejecting the FIR by terming it baseless and politically motivated, the speakers alleged that on the eve of downsizing of the Punjab Cabinet, one group of the ruling party, had through this action, only tried to clip the wings of a leader of another group in the party. "Innocent" officials of their department, they said, had been made scape goats.

They threatened that if the FIR was not withdrawn, they would resort to a statewide agitation. They also said their colleagues had been arrested without verifying facts.



Two dowry harassment cases registered
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, July 6
The Shimla Puri police yesterday registered a case under Sections 420, 406,498-A, 506 and 120-B of the IPC on the statement of Ms Baljit Kaur, who lives on the Ludhiana Road at Raikot, against her husband Satnam Singh, father-in-law Nirmal Singh, mother-in-law Nirmal Kaur, brother-in-law Gurpreet Singh and his wife Gursharan Kaur, who live in street number 6 of Shimla Puri.

The complainant had stated that ever since her marriage, the accused had been harassing her and threatening her to get more dowry. No arrest has been made so far.

In another case on the statement of Ms Suneeta Rani, who lives in Gurpreet Nagar on the Noorwala Road, the Salem Tabri police yesterday registered a case under Sections 406 and 498-A of the IPC against her husband Balwant Singh Malhotra, brother-in-law Sant Kumar, mother-in-law Asha Rani, sister-in-law Rekha Malhotra, who live in Shaheed Bhagat Singh Colony at Moti Nagar.

The woman said that she was married in February 2002 and alleged that the accused had been harassing her and demanding more dowry. No arrest has been made so far.

Assaulted: The Sadar police yesterday registered a case under Sections 341,506,294 and 34 of the IPC on the statement of Mr Sucha Singh, a resident of Noorpur Bet village, against Sukhwinder Kaur, alias Sukhi, a resident of Rasoolpur Patti village and one other person accompanying her.

The complainant had stated that the accused had stopped his wife on the road in Barewal Dogra village, threatened and abused her on July 3. No arrest has been made so far.

Injured: The division number 5 police yesterday registered a case under Sections 279, 337 and 338 of the IPC on the statement of Ms Savitteri Devi, a housewife living on the Gurdial Singh Road, against an unknown woman driving a Honda City car (DL-3CS- 1932).

The woman had stated that while she was traveling by a rickshaw, the accused had banged her car into the rickshaw near the Fountain Chowk due to which she fell down on the ground and broke her right arm on June 30. No arrest has been made so far.

Knives seized: The division number 6 police yesterday arrested Hem Raj, who lives near the Durga Mata Mandir on the Barota Road in Shimla Puri, and recovered a kamanidar knife from his possession and registered a case against him under the Arms Act. The accused was nabbed on Monday evening near the Quality chowk, the police said today.

Raj Kumar, who lives in street number 1 of Nanak Nagar in Shimla Puri, was also arrested and booked under the Arms Act. The police said today that the accused was arrested from near the post office in Vijay Nagar on the Oswal Road last evening and a kamanidar knife was seized from his possession.

Liquor seized: The division number 6 police arrested Vinod Kumar, a resident of Chhajpur village in Panipat district of Haryana now employed at a tent house in Hargobind Nagar, recovered 10 bottles of country liquor from his possession. A case was registered against him under the Excise Act.

The Basti Jodhewal police arrested Jaswinder Singh alias Raju, a resident of Lall Kalan village near Samrala, and recovered 12 bottles of whiskey form his possession. He was booked under the Excise Act. The police said today that the accused was arrested from near the culvert in Sardar Nagar last evening.


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