L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


PHRC directive on city parks
Kanchan Vasdev
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 8
Commenting on the bad condition of parks maintained by the Municipal Corporation, the Punjab State Human Rights Commission, (PHRC), has directed the Principal Secretary, Local Government, Punjab, to personally attend to the problem along with the Commissioner, MC, Ludhiana.

The commission has observed that the Park Management Committees constituted by the public have done better job as per the report of the Deputy Commissioner, Ludhiana, regarding the state of public parks.

The PHRC held that ‘‘due care and attention is not being paid to the upkeep and maintenance of parks. This has a direct relevance with the quality of life being experienced by the residents. A clean and pollution free environment has bearings on the right to life and dignity.’’

Stating that the ‘‘commission forcefully recommends that the matter receives the personal attention of Personal Secretary, Local Government and Commissioner himself,’’ the PHRC suggested that ways and means have to be devised for this larger objective. ‘‘It appears that so far, short-term and long-term measures as advised in the earlier order have yet to be materialised. It is hoped that the matter shall now be pursued in full earnestness.’’

While directing the Principal Secretary to ensure that decision on the report of Deputy Commissioner be arrived at preferably within three months of the order, the commission has closed the matter on the plea that it has already been substantially delayed.

The federation of the Park Management Committees had moved the commission in May 2003 stating that while they were maintaining the parks, the civic body had not made any payments to them for doing so although it had agreed in principle to pay them at the rate of Re 1 per sq meter.

The federation of PMCs was represented by Mr S.S. Chana, Mr K.S. Gill, Mr Satnam Singh Khera, Mr H.K.L. Verma, Mr Pawan Sood, Mr Surjit Singh and Mr Satnam Singh. The PMCs had revived several abandoned parks in the city.

The case saw many developments in the past with the PMCs alleging that they had been maintaining the parks well and MC was claiming that it was also doing a good job.

The commission had then sought a report from the Deputy Commissioner regarding the state of maintenance of public parks some months ago. The report of the DC said that out of 703 municipal parks, maintenance of 583 is being done by MC while 104 are being maintained by PMCs. Sixteen parks were being placed under miscellaneous category.

The DC, had maintained that out of 583 parks, 389 were in a rather bad shape. On the other hand 61 out of 104 parks being maintained by PMCs were in a good shape. He had recommended larger participation by the PMCs for better environment.

The PHRC said that it was, however, upto the administration to consider whether they would like to utilise the services of PMCs or not and the issue is outside the purview of the commission.



PNB auctions defaulters’ properties
Shveta Pathak
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 8
In what comes as a strong warning to loan defaulters, Punjab National Bank (PNB) today auctioned properties of defaulters. This is the first case here wherein after taking physical possession of defaulters’ properties under the Securitisation Act, a bank moved a step further and sold off the properties that were taken over.

The properties that were sold through auction today belonged to M/s Bittu Garments of Haibowal Kalan and M/s Chinky Garments of Basti Jodhewal. The properties were sold for Rs 4.77 lakh and Rs 8.45 lakh, respectively, according to the Chief Manager Mr Anil Sama.

The parties were issued notices after they erred in repayment of their loans. “Even after we took physical possession of the properties, they were given 30-day notice during which they were asked to settle the loan. However, as they failed to do so the bank decided to auction the properties,” a senior official said.

After the Securitisation Act came into place last year, PNB took physical possession of 23 properties for default in repayment of loans that stood over Rs 4 crore.

The move assumes significance as so far banks had been focussing on issuing notices or taking physical possession of defaulters’ properties.

“In this case also, we tried to negotiate with the parties concerned, but as no final settlement took place, we had to sell the properties to recover our dues,” the officer said.

He said, “After taking possession of properties, if no settlement is done, the bank has various options to sell these. These options include calling tenders, auctions or a private treaty between the borrower, the purchaser of the property and the bank. In case of the Chinky Garments, for instance, we had first decided to invite tenders. But as no tenders were received, we went in for an auction.”

After the property is sold, an authorised officer of the government issues a sale certificate to the buyer on the basis of which the property is registered in his name.

The official said in several cases where the bank took physical possession of properties, borrowers had come forward and settled their accounts.

“The Securitisation Act has helped us curb defaulters. Many, who were not making payments, came forward after their properties were taken over by the bank,” the official said. 



Gang of robbers busted
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, April 8
With the arrest of four criminals, the Sidhwanbet police has claimed to have busted a gang of robbers in Hoshiarpur, Jalandhar, Jagraon and Barnala. Their fifth accomplice managed to escape.

According to Mr Rajiv Ahir, SSP, Harnek Singh, alias Samra of Bilga, Harpreet Singh of Taggar, Lakhbir Singh of Sandowal, Sukhwinder Singh, alias Sonu of Gumtala, were arrested by the police from bridge drain Sadarpura today while they, armed with deadly weapons, were planning to commit crime.

Their fifth accomplice, Harbans Singh, alias Bansa of Ganna, fled. The police had received a secret information about the gang.

Addressing a press conference, Mr Ahir, said the gang members had gone to the Barnala area in a Tata 407.

They intercepted an Indica car with an intention to snatch it, but the car driver managed to dodge them. The gang thereafter went to akhara bridge.

There they again tried to stop an Esteem car coming from Jagraon side, but failed.

They also intercepted a scooter, assaulted Gurpreet Singh and snatched Rs 1,050 from his brother.

A case under Section 395 of the IPC was registered at the Jagraon police station.

Mr Ahir said one .32 bore country-made pistol, one .315 bore pistol one .303 bore pistol, along with cartridges, one sword and two iron rods, one Hero Honda motor cycle, one TVS motor cycle, one Tata 407 had been seized.

Cases under Sections 399 and 402 of the IPC and various sections of the Arms Act have been registered at the Sidhwan Bet police station.

The preliminary inquiry revealed that Harnek Singh Samra, and Harbans Singh, alias Bansa, are the gang leaders and they had established their headquarter at the shop of Gurpreet Singh at Kot Badal Khan where they would usually gather and plan crime.



Murder accused jumps from first floor of court complex
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 8
Teja Singh, who was arrested for his alleged involvement in a murder which took place yesterday, is battling for life at the local Civil Hospital when he suffered multiple injuries after jumping from the first floor of the district court complex here this afternoon.

Information gathered by Ludhiana Tribune revealed that Teja had been arrested for stabbing Charanjit Singh, of Hawaas village to death yesterday. He escaped from police custody while being brought to the district court complex in connection with his remand and jumped from the first floor.

Whether Teja Singh, a resident of Koomkalan town of this district, involved in the murder of Charanjit Singh to avenge the murder of his (Teja) brother, which took place about 15 days ago, had made an attempt to commit suicide or made an attempt to escape from police custody could not be known. Charanjit’s son had killed Ranjodh Singh, brother of Teja Singh.

Mr Jatinder Singh, in charge, police post, Kochar Market, under whose jurisdiction the district court complex falls, said though he sent a police official to the spot immediately after getting the information in this connection, the police party accompanying the accused had already taken him to local Civil Hospital. He added that so far he has not received any official information in this connection.



Passing Thru

Sandeep Pandey
Mr Sandeep Pandey Convener, Peace March (Delhi to Multan)

Is there any historical significance of the peace march undertaken by you?

Nizamudeen had once initiated such a peace march from Delhi to Multan, the land of Baba Farid. The “aman March” started by us is a enactment of the same as it began from the shrine of Nizamudeen Aaulia on March 23 i.e. martyrdom day of Shaheed Bhagat Singh, and will finally arrive at Multan on May 11, the day on which first revolt for freedom started. The purpose of the march is to spread the voice of oneness and strengthen Indo-Pak ties.

What about Pakistani delegates participating in the march?

Of the total of 43 delegates, only three of them were given visa and that too till Delhi, from where they had to return. But the political restrictions cannot resist our inner desire of unification. We shall be carrying the march till Wagah border from where it shall continue to Multan by these 43 delegates and the chain shall be carried forward. But if the cricket fans can be given visa why not peace lovers?

What do you feel about the relations of two countries?

India and Pakistan should end the race for nuclear armaments so that the outer and inner boundaries vanish and peace prevails.

— Lovleen Bains



Peace marchers reach Ludhiana
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 8
A group of 35 persons from a cross-section of the society and representing different parts of the country reached here today. The group is on a padyatra from Delhi to Multan. The marchers started from Delhi on March 23, the martyrdom day of Bhagat Singh, Sukhdev and Raj Guru and will reach Multan on May 11.

The marchers are led by the Magasaysay Award winner, Dr Sandeep Panday. Interestingly Mr Panday, while retaining the award had returned the prize money of $50,000 as not want to compromise his position vis-a-vis USA.

Dr Panday pointed out, people of the two countries, India and Pakistan were not hostile towards each other. It was the perceived hostility only among people which needed to be removed.

Dr Arun Mitra, convener of the Indo Pakistan Peace March and Dr L.S. Chawla, chairman, said that such people to people efforts were of paramount importance in the region. 



Scientists given award
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 8
Dr Sat Pal Mehra, coordinator extension, Department of Agronomy and Agrometrology, Punjab Agricultural University, has been given Dr Satwant Kaur Memorial Best Extension Worker Award for the year 2004 for his outstanding achievement in the field of agronomy.

Dr Mehra, who has been looking after the extension activities of the Department of Agronomy and Agrometrology since 1994, has been very successful in propagating different agronomic technologies among the farmers at grass root level.

During the past five years he has been actively involved in the conduct of about 1450 varietal trials on different field crops and 451 agronomic trials in the fields. He has also delivered eight TV talks and 11 radio talks for dissemination of agronomic technology. He is having 50 research papers, 60 articles, two books and one farm bulletin to his credit. 



City engineer honoured in Australia
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 8
Dr Harninder Singh Sidhu, Research Engineer, Department of Farm Power and Machinery, PAU, has been awarded with the John Dillon Memorial Fellowship for 2004-05.

The award was presented by Australia’s Minister for Foreign Affairs Alexander Downer in the Australian Parliament house recently in Canberra.

The fellowship also provided a five-week advanced training in agricultural research management in the best practised Australian institutions like the Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation (eco-system), Canberra, Charles Sturt University, Wagga Wagga, Department of Primary Industries, Wagga Wagga and the Australian Centre for International Agricultural Research (ACIAR), Canberra.



Singla’s death mourned
Our Correspondent

Samrala, April 8
A joint meeting of employees of the local market committee including commission agents association, was held here today in the committee premises under the chairmanship of Mr Harpal Singh Dhillon, chairman, market committee to condole the death of Mr Sant Ram Singla, Chairman, Mandi Board, Punjab.

A two-minute silence was observed and tributes were paid by Mr Balbir Singh Rajewal, national general secretary of the Bharti Kisan Union.



Electro Trade Fair begins
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 8
The Ludhiana Dealers Association inaugurated Electro Trade Fair 2005 here today. Over 60 companies from different states are participating in the three-day fair that concludes on April 10.

“Technology in this industry has witnessed tremendous. The idea to conduct this exhibition is to make industry in Ludhiana aware of these changes so that they are able to meet global competition,” said Mr Raman Nayyar, secretary general, Ludhiana Electrical Dealers Association.

Among the participating companies are names like L&T, Seimens, Crompton Greaves, GE and Crystal.

Companies, besides displaying their products, have also put up latest technologies in manufacturing. Emphasising on the need to adopt latest technology Mr Nayyar said, “We have been using old systems for manufacturing which are time consuming and make industry uncompetitive. Use of new systems would not only help improve manufacturing systems and saving costs and time, it would also attract more buyers from other countries,” he said.

This is the fourth year that the association is conducting this fair. Mr Nayyar said multinationals were keen on exhibiting their products in Ludhiana as it was a high potential market.


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