L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Fire in courts complex, DC orders probe
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, February 3
Exposing the inefficient fire fighting system in high rise building of district courts complex, a fire broke out on the second floor of the complex today following a leakage in LPG cylinder when some persons working in the canteen were changing the cylinder.

Surprisingly, none of the 12 fire extinguishers installed in the premises worked when some canteen workers tried to use them. The fire was then doused with the help of water. Two fire engines were also pressed into service.

The fire was controlled with the efforts of some persons present in the courts. Had it not been controlled in time, a major tragedy could have taken place as hundreds of persons, including litigants, lawyers, judges and other people are present in the premises on any working day.

The Deputy Commissioner, Mr Anurag Verma, ordered an inquiry into the fire incident and asked the SDM to submit a report into the matter within a fortnight. He asked him to find out why the fire extinguishers did not work.

The fire broke out at 12:30 p.m. when two workers of canteen were trying to change the cylinder. They said that the nozzle was kept opened for a longer time and when they lighted a burner fire spread in the canteen. Fortunately none of the cylinders kept in the canteen got burst.

Panic gripped persons present in courts complex as they started running helter skelter seeing the fire. It was surprising that the fire extinguishers, installed in the building did not work, that was constructed recently. It was being said that it was a modern complex and all arrangements for fighting fire were in place.

But all claims fell flat today when a small fire could not be controlled with the extinguishers.



4 office-bearers of Vidya Sabha voted out
Our Correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh, February 3
Four office-bearers of the management committee of The Vidya Parcharak Sabha running three educational institutes including a government-aided senior secondary school were voted out of office at an emergency meeting held at Mahatma Gandhi Senior Secondary School today. The ousted members were led by Mr Rajnish Sharma Guddu former OSD to Mr Rajinder Kaur Bhattal, former Chief Minister of the state.

Six members of the management committee had asked Mr Mangat Ram Jain, vice-president of the sabha to call an emergency meeting to debate the no-confidence motion. Out of nine members present at the meeting, six voted in the favour of motion and held that Mr Abhai Jain President, Mr Sukhdev Raj Sharma, Manager, Mr Kailash Sharma, secretary and Mr Surinder Tayal cashier had lost confidence of the majority.

Mr Mangat Ram Jain, Mr Ravinder Puri, Mr Vijay Kakria, Mr Amrit Pal, Mr Mahesh Sharma and Mr Kedar Nath Kapila were elected as President, vice-president, manager, secretary, cashier and auditor respectively of the sabha.

The Sabha having around 300 members runs Janta College for Women and Lal Bahadur Shastri Public School besides the government-aided school.

Talking to the Ludhiana Tribune the new office-bearers said that the atmosphere at the educational institutes run by the committee would not allowed to be vitiated with political issues. They appealed the leaders of various political and social organisations of the town to extend cooperation in improving the standard of education in the institutes.

Mr Jatinder Bhola, Mr Sham Sunder, Ms Chiter Rekha Sharma, Mr Kishori Lal Badhan, Mr Jagwant Singh Jaggie Mr Yaseen Mohamad, Mr Mohinder Multani, Mr Jaswinder Sodhi, Ms Santosh Rani and Ms Veena Puri (all Councilors) were present on the occasion.



One gets life term for murder
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, February 3
Additional Sessions Judge J.S. Bhatia has sentenced Piara Khan alias Babbu of Khanpur village to rigorous imprisonment for life on the charge of killing his neighbour-Hussain Mohammad in 2001.

Pronouncing the judgement, Mr Bhatia held that the prosecution had proved the charges against the accused, beyond reasonable doubt. The judge also ordered the accused to pay Rs 1000 as fine.

The police had also booked three other persons, Akbar Ali, Ashraf Ali and Sadiq Mohhammad of Khanpur village but they were acquitted by the Court, giving them benefit of doubt. The Judge observed that charges levelled against these persons were not proved.

An F.I.R was registered against the accused persons under section 302 and 34 of the IPC on December 3, 2001 at Sadar Police Station, following the statement of Iqbal Mohammad (son of deceased).

The complainant had submitted to the police that on that evening, he was present in the courtyard of his house, along with his brothers-Ramzan Mohhammad, Faquir Mohd., Bholi(wife) and Hassan Mohd.(father). On hearing abuses, they all went outside their home.

There they saw that the accused persons were hurling abuses. My father asked them not to hurl abuses. Following this accused become arrogant. Piara Khan gave a blow of ‘’ wooden bahi ‘’ on the head of my father. Remaining accused also gave started giving fist and leg blows, added the complainant.

When we raised the alarm, the accused fled away from the spot. Injured Hassan Mohd. was shifted to Civil Hospital, Ludhiana for treatment but he expired. The police arrested the persons.

The prosecution examined as nine witnesses to prove its the case.



3 convicted for selling adulterated foodstuff
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, February 3
Mr S.S. Dhaliwal, Chief Judicial Magistrate has convicted three persons under the Prevention of Food Adulteration Act 1954 for selling adulterated and sub-standard foodstuff.

According to Dr Rajinder Kaur, civil surgeon, shopkeeper Tara Singh, of Kochhar Market has been sentenced to six months imprisonment and fine of Rs 1000 for selling adulterated haldi powder. Suresh Kumar, resident of New Subhash Nagar on the Rahon Road and Sohan Singh of Mansooran Milk Producers’ Union have also been awarded similar punishment for selling adulterated milk.

Meanwhile, continuing the drive against adulteration of food items being sold in the city, teams of health officials had taken 11 samples of cold drinks from different localities, which were sent to Government Laboratory for analysis.

Dr Rajinder Kaur further said that drive to check adulteration of foodstuff would continue relentlessly and strict action would be taken against poor-quality eatable destroyed.



PAU gets Rs 1 crore ICAR project
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, February 3
The Indian Council for Agricultural Research (ICAR) has sanctioned a multi-disciplinary project worth over Rs one crore to develop technologies for the utilization of paddy submitted by the School of Energy Studies for Agriculture, PAU, Ludhiana. Giving this information, Dr Kirpal Singh Aulakh, vice-Chancellor of PAU told that this project has been sanctioned with a budget of Rs 1.09 crore.

Wheat and paddy are the major crops of the state. Wheat straw is generally utilized as feed for animals. Punjab produces about 14 million tonne of paddy annually resulting in about 15 million tonnes of paddy straw. About 90 per cent of it remains unutilized and is burnt in the fields which result in severe air pollution, depletion of vital nutrients of soils and wastage of useful energy source.

Dr Aulakh disclosed that the project consisted of eight components and the research would be conducted in seven different departments of the university. Utilization of paddy straw as fuel and the GIS assessment of paddy straw would be taken up in the school of Energy Studies.



Pirated CDs seized, 2 held

Khanna, February 3
The local police seized 389 pirated CDs and arrested two persons in this connection yesterday. According to the police, Mr Gurdeep Singh in charge of the Criminal Investigation Authority, conducted a raid on a music shop in Ikolaha village on a complaint by T Series Music Company’s observer Mr Jasbir Singh.

During the search, the police seized 340 VCDs, 38 DVDs and 11 audio CDs of MP3. The police arrested owners of the MG Star Music shop, Nazar Singh and Gurjit Singh, both residents of Harion Kalan in Khanna subdivision. OC



18-year-old pins hopes on good Samaritans
Kuldip Bhatia

Ludhiana, February 3
Gurdeep Kaur has seen many ups and downs in her short life of just 18 years. Her father Kuldeep Singh is a truck driver and stays away for home for months together just to earn a livelihood. Being the eldest in the family, she has to help her mother to look after her younger siblings and aged grandparents. The family somehow manages to meet their ends with 2500 rupees that Kuldeep Singh earns as monthly salary.

13th of July last year proved true to its evil name for Gurdeep. A 12th standard student of Himalaya Public School, Khanna, in this district, she fainted in her classroom. She was rushed to Khanna Nursing Home where after an EEG and blood tests, she was referred to Christian medical College and Hospital (CMCH) here.

It was then revealed to her shocked mother and frail grandfather that both her kidneys had failed and she immediately required dialysis as a life saving measure. Since then Gurdeep was undergoing dialysis every fourth day to be kept alive. Her mother Swaranjeet Kaur was willing to donate her kidney so that her daughter could lead a normal life but the family did not have enough funds for the expensive kidney transplant surgery.

“We live in Khanna, and since I have to look after the whole family as well, I travel daily between Khanna and Ludhiana to visit my daughter. We have borrowed money from our relatives but it has all been already utilised on her regular dialysis. Doctors have concluded that only a kidney transplant can save the life of my daughter. I am ready to give my kidney to her but we do not know how to arrange the money,” said inconsolable Swaranjeet.

According to Dr Basant Pawar, head of nephrology department in the CMCH and Gurdeep’s treating doctor, the patient required immediate kidney transplant. Aware of the financial condition of the family, the hospital was providing maximum help for the treatment. In spite of all financial help from the CMCH, Gurdeep would still require at least Rs 2.5 lakh for her surgery and follow up treatment.

Gurdeep, as well as her family members, were now pinning their hopes on the kind hearted city residents and service organisations to lend a helping hand to save a young life.

All those who wish to help Gurdeep could contact, Dr Basant Pawar or the Medical Superintendent’s office in the CMCH at Ludhiana. All payments should be made in favor of Christian Medical College and Hospital with “Treatment of Gurdeep Kaur” written on the back.



Tribune Impact
NGO offers Pritpal xerox machine for a living
Kanchan Vasdev
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, February 3
The Viklang Sahayata Kendra (VSK) of the Bhartiya Vikas Parishad today offered to help a 19-year-old physically challenged boy Pritpal, for setting up a photostat shop to make him self-sufficient.

Mr R.P. Gupta, honorary secretary of the VSK, said the organisation would buy a Xerox worth Rs 60,000 for Pritpal to enable him to earn his livelihood. Besides the organisation has offered to provide him callipers.

His plight was highlighted in these columns today. Pritpal had contracted polio and damaged his legs due to the disease when he was just one-year-old. Since then he has not been able to walk properly.

Mr Yash Pal Gupta, national secretary of the VSK, said they would buy the copier for him but he would have to arrange for a place to work. He added that they would advise him to tie up with some PCO owner or some other shopkeeper where he could put up his machine.

He said the machine would be the property of the organisation and Pritpal would be allowed to take away all the money he earns with it. The organisation would not take any commission or any other charges from him. The charges for the AMC of the machine would also be paid by the VSK.

Mr Gupta said Pritpal would not need to pay any money for his callipers throughout his life as the VSK would provide him new calipers whenever he would require the same.

Ms Kanta, mother of Pritpal, thanked The Tribune for highlighting his case. She said with the help of the NGO, his future would be secured. She was, however, little skeptical about finding a place for him where he would be putting up the machine.

“We live in a rented room and our landlord is always wanting us to go away. I do not know what is going to happen next. But if some people have offered him this help, some others would solve this problem also,’’ she said.

Pritpal had met Ms Sonia Gandhi, All-India Congress chief, two years ago. She had directed the Chief Minister, Captain Amarinder Singh, to provide some aid from the Chief Minister’s Relief Fund to him. He had further directed the youth to meet the city Mayor, Mr Nahar Singh Gill. But despite making rounds to various offices, the youth was not given any relief. 



DC redresses grievances
Tribune News Service

Raikot, February 3
Poor level of healthcare, corruption by officials of various departments and breakdown of the water supply schemes in Raikot subdivision were evident during a grievances redressal function organised by the district administration here today.

Taking a serious view of the non- availability of doctors at the local Civil Hospital, Deputy Commissioner Anurag Verma pulled up the SMO and directed him to ensure the availability of at least one doctor round the clock for emergency cases so that the serious patients could be attended to timely. He also directed the SDM and SMO to ensure the opening of one chemist shop round the clock in the town, so that people should not face problem in purchasing medicines.

As many as 100 complaints were taken up and most of them redressed by issuing direction to the officers concerned on the spot and the remaining have been sent to the officers for their action within a period of two weeks.

The complainants from Raikot and surrounding villages alleged that before and after duty hours, normally no doctor remains available to attend emergency cases in Civil Hospital. The SMO could not give a satisfactory explanation, following which the Deputy Commissioner told him to give top priority to ensure availability of medical staff in hospital round the clock.

Taking up the problems faced by people in the preparation of ration cards in the area, the DFSO informed that earlier blank ration cards were not available with the department but now ration cards are being made. The DC took a serious note of the negligence on the part of the Food and Supply staff and directed it to launch a special campaign in the subdivision and prepare all ration cards by March 31.

Panchayats of some villages complained that there was a large-scale leakage of water from the water supply tanks and pipes in the villages. Mr Verma pulled up the SDO, Public Health, and directed him to immediately take the remedial measures. He asked the SDO, Public Health, to immediately prepare estimate for tubewell bores in Rattowal and Tusey villages, where overhead tank had been constructed and water pipes had already been laid so that the people could make use of the water supply scheme.

The panchayats of Rupo Patti village offered to bear all expenses of separating the joint water supply of Seeloani and Rupo Patti, as the joint supply system was not adequate for both villages. On this the DC asked the SDO to prepare the estimate so that the required money could be got deposited by the village panchayat.

People of Raikot complained about serious traffic problem near the Tehsil Office and suggested that the problem could be eased if the Tehsil Office is shifted to a vacant building available with the Cooperative Department.

On this, Mr Verma asked the SDM and Assistant Registrar, Cooperative Department, to work out the modalities for shifting of the Tehsil Office.

On a complaint regarding the eve-teasing by boys at Ganga Giri Girls College Road, Mr Verma directed the SHO to take strict action to ensure that no girl is harassed by any miscreant.

Reacting to an allegation of bribe against a patwari of Johlan Circle through an affidavit, the Deputy Commissioner marked the enquiry to the SDM, Raikot, and assured that if the allegations substantiated in the inquiry, strict action would be taken against the patwari. On a complaint regarding the large scale encroachments in the main bazar by shopkeepers Mr Verma directed the EO, Municipal Committee, and SHO Raikot to jointly remove these encroachments within one week.

Some complainants demanded that all the buses should stop inside the bus stand rather than outside on roads, which creates traffic problem. On this, Mr Verma asked the SHO to ensure the stoppage of buses inside the bus stand only.



Fire in machinery unit

Ludhiana, February 3
A machinery parts manufacturing unit in Miller Ganj here caught fire causing damage to the goods stored inside. The manufacturing unit, United Sales Corporation, caught fire at around 1 p.m. It was witnessed by a worker when he saw smoke emanating from a window. The fire started from the first floor of the building and soon engulfed the ground floor also. It took around eight fire engines to douse the fire in two hours.

Owner Rajesh Grover said that the fire engines took quite a long time to reach the spot. He added that mediapersons reached the place earlier than the fire brigade. Some of them even called the fire station from their cell phones for the fire fighting squad.

He added that the cause of fire could not be known but preliminary investigations suggested that it was caused due to a short circuit. He said that the loss was being evaluated. TNS



Locomotive driver suspended
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, February 3
A driver of a railway locomotive was suspended today afternoon when the engine derailed because of his alleged negligence near Dhandari Railway Station today morning.

Railway sources said the driver had brought the engine without any permission on the Delhi-Ludhiana section of the railway.

Traffic had to diverted to a loop line. Though no train was stopped but the trains had to pass at slow speed.

The engine could be removed from the accident site in the afternoon only.



Labourer’s body found, murder case registered
Our Correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh, February 3
The Sadar Police at Ludhiana has registered an FIR under section 302 of the IPC against unidentified persons for allegedly killing a migrant labourer whose body was recovered from the outskirts of Sharinh village near here. The deceased was yet to be identified.

According to complaint lodged at Sadar Police Station Mr Darshan Singh a farmer of Sharinh village had noticed a body lying concealed in the bushes along a brook near his fields. He informed the police in the afternoon after which a party led by Mr. Sandeep Kumar SHO Sadar, recovered the body.

Investigations by the police revealed that deceased had been murdered some time on Wednesday. The deceased seemed to have registered the assailants. He was hit on head, face and neck with a sharp-edged weapon and his body was so concealed in the deep stagnant water of the nullah that a casual look by passers by could not notice it. He had suffered a deep sharp edged weapon cut on the neck.

Though the police questioned a large number of migrant labourers by summoning them from nearby fields and a brick kiln none of them identified the deceased.

As the spot where the body was found is situated almost half a kilometer from the residential area of the village, the villagers showed ignorance about the murder. A marriage palace is also situated near the spot. The body has been sent to the civil hospital for post-mortem examination.



Illicit liquor seized, car impounded
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, February 3
In Jagraon district police claimed having seized Lahan and illicit liquor from four places and impounded one car and arrested five persons in this connection. The Dehlon police intercepted a Cielo Car no. UP-14C-3828 near Kaaned village and alleged to have recovered120 bottles of IMFL. Harjit Singh of Mullanpur P.S. Payal and Satwant Singh of Aasi Kalan, the occupants of the car were arrested and a case under Section 61/1/14 of Excise Act has been registered. The police also impounded the car.

In other incident the Dehlon police arrested Sukhraj Singh alias Gogi of Nangal and recovered 32 bottles of IMFL, whereas Sidhwanbet police seized 13.680 liters of illicit liquor from Amar Singh of Parjian Biharipur and Raikot police recovered 45 kg of Lahan from the fields of Rabinder Singh from Jalaldibad. Cases under Excise Act have been registered.



SBI grahak mitra centre opened
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, February 3
Mr Akhilesh Mohan, Deputy General Manager, State Bank of India, zonal office (Punjab), today inaugurated a grahak mitra centre at the SBI Civil Lines branch here. The centre, which has been installed at the entry point in the branch premises, would cater to all customer queries.

Mr Mohan said that the bank was working at a fast pace towards improving its services. He said that business process re-engineering, which was started by the bank in 2003, aimed at speed loan proposals, had taken off well. “Already it has been implemented in 500 branches across the country and would include 12 branches in Ludhiana,” he said. He also disclosed that the bank was planning to acquire a foreign bank. “We are expanding our overseas operations as a part of which the bank is planning to acquire a foreign bank,” he disclosed. SBI currently has around 50 offices overseas.

Regarding general insurance business, Mr Mohan said the bank had applied for a license as it planned to get into general insurance business on its own. “But that is in initial stages only,” he said.

At the inauguration of the bank’s grahak mitra centre, Mr S.K. Jain, Assistant General Manager, and Mr Manohar Lal, Deputy GM (inspection), Mumbai, were also present.


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