L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Administration orders inquiry into malaria deaths
Kanchan Vasdev
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 10
The district administration today ordered an inquiry into the deaths that took place in Ambedkar Nagar and adjoining areas of Giaspura allegedly due to malaria last one week. The inquiry officer has been asked to fix responsibility for the epidemic

This was stated here today by Deputy Commissioner, Mr Anurag Verma, who deputed Mr M. S. Jaggi, SDM (West), to inquire into the circumstances under which the deaths took place in Giaspura and identify the negligent authorities.

The Deputy Commissioner along with Mr Jaggi, Mr S. N. Tiwari, Civil Surgeon, Mr Ashok Kumar, Zonal Commissioner, Municipal Corporation, Mr B. K. Gupta, and Assistant Commissioner, Municipal Corporation, visited the affected areas of Giaspura, including Ambedkar Nagar, Sukhdev Nagar, Ajit Nagar and Azad Nagar and went to the houses of the families of the victims.

Reacting to the complaint regarding non-availability of doctors at the medical camp set up in the area last night, Mr Verma told the Civil Surgeon to ensure availability of doctors and ambulances round the clock and to ensure that each patient was provided with required medicines for the treatment. He also directed the Civil Surgeon to ishift the serious patients, if any, to the hospital for treatment after first-aid at the medical camp.

The Deputy Commissioner directed the officers of the Municipal Corporation to start fogging operations to kill mosquitoes in all affected and surrounding areas twice a week and ensure cleanliness.

He also asked the Zonal Commissioner to send sufficient water tankers to supply potable drinking water in the area.

The residents complained to the Deputy Commissioner about poor sanitary conditions in the area.

They also demanded better medical facilities. The Deputy Commissioner asked the SDM (W) to constantly monitor medicare services, drinking water supply and fogging operations on a daily basis and send an action taken report to him.

The Civil Surgeon informed that the Health Department had set up a medical camp and the affected people were being provided with the required medicines.



Lineman’s wife becomes crorepati
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 10
Kuldeep Kaur, wife of an assistant lineman with the Punjab State Electricity Board and resident of a village in Moga, could not believe her luck when she saw the result of the Baisakhi bumper. She used to purchase lottery tickets ending with 92 digits regularly. But she had hardly expected that one day she would be a crorepati. She is the lucky winner of the Rs 1.5 crore Baisakhi Bumper of the Punjab State lotteries. The cheque for this amount was presented to her by the Punjab Finance Minister, Mr Surinder Singla, at a glittering function held at Hotel Majestic Park Plaza here today.

Kuldeep Kaur, who has two sons and a daughter, said that she would like her husband to invest the money in some profit-making venture. She dreamt of setting up an industrial unit in her native village. Besides, she wanted to spend a lot of money on the education of her children. She also desired donate some money.

Her beaming husband, Chamkaur Singh, said that they used to purchase about 10 tickets of each bumper draw ending with digits 92. Their three children, who accompanied them, however, appeared unmindful of the wealth they were to inherit. 



Official convicted in graft case after 11 years
Legal Correspondent

Ludhiana, August 10
The Special Judge, Mr Jaspal Bhatia, has convicted an employee of the Punjab State Electricity Board (PSEB), Sewa Singh of Balwala village and sentenced him to undergo imprisonment for one year in a graft case.

The case had been registered against him 11 years ago on the charge of accepting a bribe of Rs 200. A fine of Rs 1,000 was also imposed on the accused.

An FIR was registered against the accused on April 27, 1993 at Vigilance Bureau Police Station, under Section 7, 13(2) of the Prevention of Corruption Act, following the complaint of RazauDin, owner of M/s Modern Steel Furniture Works, Industrial Area.

The complainant had submitted to the Vigilance Bureau that he had moved an application for getting commercial electricity connection in the name of his father on October 15, 1992. He had deposited the security money with the PSEB. In January 1993, a demand notice was issued by the board. Following which he deposited Rs 320.

The complainant had further alleged that he along with Harinder Pal had gone to the office of PSEB to inquire about the connection, where the accused met him and demanded Rs 500 as gratification with the plea that the whole work was to be done by him and he would get their connection installed. Thereafter, he agreed to release the connection after charging Rs 200.

But the complainant informed the Vigilance Bureau. The bureau swung into action and apprehended the accused red-handed, while accepting bribe. However, during the trial accused pleaded false implication.

In support of his contentions, the accused examined Gurmail Singh, cashier of PSEB office in the Industrial Area. 



Bureaus to provide maids!
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, August 10
If you are on the lookout for a good maid for your child or for domestic work, simply contact bureaus in New Delhi and they will provide you with a maid immediately. The latest trend of keeping maids through such bureaus is fast catching up with the local residents. According to elite city women, these bureaus, hundreds in number, not only provide maids but also stand guarantee for them. In case, you don’t like a particular maid, you can contact them and get a substitute.

Ms Ritu Anand says that she got a responsible maid through a bureau. She asked one of her relatives at New Delhi to arrange a maid and had to pay Rs 2,500 to the bureau in advance. She says, "I have been searching for a good, trained maid to look after my house for the past six months but could not find any. Then one of my relatives arranged a maid from a Delhi-based bureau. I pay her a monthly salary of Rs 2,500. She takes an off on alternate Sundays to visit a local church. I am very comfortable with her”.

Ms Shailja Bhasin (name changed), working in a multinational bank here, says that she needed a maid for her six-month-old baby. “Since I worked in Delhi for a few years, I knew about these bureaus who arranged servants and maids.



Ludhiana Calling

Dowry bait

A major electronics company seems to have rubbed the city women the wrong way. In its zeal to overtake the sales promotion exercise undertaken by its rivals, the company sought to attract consumers by claiming that they had good schemes for presenting the big screen TV and latest audio-video sets as dowry items! While the nation has collectively abhorred the menace of dowry and a Dowry Prohibition Act is also there to teach the dowry seekers a lesson, the multi-national company had no qualms in trying to sell the equipment in the name of dowry. Using a public address system atop a three-wheeler, the company announced, “ Daaj-Wari (gifts, valuable given to the bride), dahej (dowry) layee wadhiya tohfa hai eh TV, special scheme naal” (The TV is best dowry item). No wonder then that a number of ‘aware’ women called up Sentinel to express their displeasure.

Quick-India movement

The ruling party boasts about its patriotic zeal and knowledge of various movements during the country’s struggle for independence all the time. But the District Congress Committee does not seem to have its facts straight. An invitation to a press conference to be organised to commemorate the Quit India Movement read ‘Quick-India movement instead of Quit India Movement. The error cannot be dismissed as the printer’s devil as the invitation cards must have passed through several hands before being sent to the medispersons.

Looking for talent hunters

The gypsies are known to perform difficult gymnastic feats since long. They can be seen performing these feats on the roadsides and in melas in order to make some money. This has been going on for centuries together. But their talent has never been put to any use. While nation spends lakhs of rupees every year on training gymnasts and they still fail to come upto expectations in world championships, these people learn the art themselves. Won’t it be nice if some talent hunters spotted these and used it in the right manner. Why not train these people further and make them participate in various national and international games? Sentinel



Cong leaders say they did not know of Satnam's activities
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 10
The Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee(PPCC) is trying hard to save several senior leaders and ministers who allegedly sheltered notorious robber, Satnam Singh, caught recently by the Ropar police. He is a resident of Ludhiana and has been held responsible for several criminal cases in the district.

The PPCC has been embarrassed by the criminal activities of some of the present leaders as well as former ones. While Satnam Singh, organising secretary of the PPCC, is being charged with involvement in over 40 cases of robbery, snatching and murder, Nirdosh Dhand, a former Youth Congress leader is wanted in a murder case in a gang war between rival groups in Ludhiana.

Just a month ago two Congress leaders from Jalalabad were caught in Ludhiana with two sex workers and booked under the immoral trafficking Act.

Highly placed police sources informed Ludhiana Tribune that the Congress leaders , especially those from Ludhiana, had been working to ensure their name was not associated with Satnam Singh's. They had initially tried to protect the accused from the police.

Sources informed that the police had recovered a large number of pictures and incriminating documents from the possession of the accused which indicated his closeness to several Congress leaders. The pictures have not been made public nor brought on record by the police so far.

Mr H S Hanspal, PPCC President, has already gone on record saying that the PPCC leaders were unaware of Satnam Singh's criminal activities. Announcing his suspension from the party, he said he and other leaders were as shocked as the general public regarding the charges against the accused.

The Ludhiana police is, however, yet to arrest Nirdosh Dhand, booked in about 20 cases of murder, extortion and other criminal activities. He is yet to be arrested.

The Youth Congress leader, Parminder Kumar, alias Kukkar, and a millionaire rice mill owner ,Vimal Kumar, both of Jalalabad town in Ferozepore district, were arrested by the Division No. 5 police in a raid on City Heart Hotel near the famous Cock Tower of this city in June this year. They were caught with prostitutes.

The exposure of criminal activities of these persons has ruffled the feathers of many Congress leaders. 



Memorial to battle of Baddowal
Kanchan Vasdev
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 10
Even as the government has failed to preserve the memory of the historic Battle of Baddowal fought almost 160 years ago, a retired Army officer is using his resources to construct a memorial and a museum in his native village here.

Col. Amarjit Singh Sekhon (retd) of Pamal village wants to dedicate the museum to the nation on the occasion of Independence Day this year.

Colonel Sekhon is striving hard to set up a museum through which he would educate the coming generations about the Anglo Sikh War which was fought near Baddowal.

The museum has been named "Desh de Raakhe" He is even trying to procure some historical documents recording the chronology of events.

"I am trying to contact a painter, who will paint the history for this museum. I know it is a difficult task but I will keep working on it slowly and gradually till I accomplish my mission. I hope that the coming generations would at least remember that a war was fought on this land,"he added.

He was disappointed to know that not many people of his own village were aware of the battle. After his retirement he settled in this village and decided to set up the memorial in Pamal. The foundation stone on the memorial was laid on January 28, 1995, on the occasion of 150th anniversary of the battle. "I got the idea of constructing this memorial after the tercentenary celebrations of the Khalsa. I thought why I should not commemorate the 150th anniversary of war as a tribute to all those who died unsung and unknown. I started working on it and could see my dream turning into a reality", he added. 



Bank employees stage protest
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 10
On a call given by the All-India State Bank of Patiala Employees Federation, staff members of various branches held a demonstration in front of the regional office of the bank here today.

The protesters were addressed by, among others, Mr Naresh Gaur, organising secretary, Mr A. K. Chhibber, vice-president, and Mr Ashok Malhan, regional secretary,of the federation.

The employees were protesting against the "adamant"attitude of the bank management to the issue of compassionate appointments for dependants of deceased employees despite assurances given by it that an understanding would be arrived at with the union. 



Restoration of trains sought
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, August 10
The Dhuri-Ludhiana Train Commuters Association has demanded an early restoration of passenger trains on the Ludhiana-Hissar lines which had been cancelled a few days ago due to a damaged rail track near Ambala. All rail traffic on the Ludhiana-Ambala-Delhi section has been diverted via Jakhal.


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