L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Sonia to decide PCC leadership issue: Tiwari
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 19
The secretary of the All-India Congress Committee, Mr Manish Tiwari, said today that the issue of the leadership of the Pradesh Congress Committee (PCC) would be decided by the party President, Ms Sonia Gandhi. He said if he was given the responsibility he would “obviously not shirk away” from it.

Mr Tiwari was on a day-long visit to the city. He also attended some public meetings. He said the purpose of his visit was to maintain a “regular rapport” with the residents. He claimed he had promised to the people of Ludhiana that whether they elect him or not, he would always be there. He said he had opened up an office where people come with various grievances which he tried to get redressed.

Talking to The Tribune he said, the PCC leadership was no issue for him since he was prepared to work in any capacity. He said he was very much happy and comfortable with the current assignment as the AICC secretary.

“But in case the party leadership has any other ideas, I will obviously have to obey those orders,” he said.

Earlier addressing a public function in ward number 35 represented by Ms Sukhwinder Kaur, Mr Tiwari said the civic body should also focus on the development of the slum areas and unrecognised colonies. He laid down the foundation stone for developmental projects worth about Rs 38 lakh. These included two tubewells and five parks in the ward.

The AICC leader maintained that the Congress government in the state had already launched a developmental programme, including the repair and construction of roads. He pointed out that foundation stones of several road projects had been laid down, while several others were in the pipeline. He said he was mooting a special plan for the beautification of the city.

Several other party leaders were also present at the function. They included senior vice-president of the Pradesh Youth Congress, Mr Pawan Dewan, Mr Amarjit Singh Tikka, Mr K.K. Bawa, Mr Gurdev Singh Lapran and Mr Gurmail Singh.



PAU to conduct entrance test for veterinary course
K.S. Chawla

Ludhiana, May 19
The authorities of the newly carved Sri Guru Angad Dev Veterinary and Animal Science University (not functional as yet) had to eat humble pie as they requested the authorities of the Punjab Agricultural University to hold the entrance test for admission to the BVSc four-year course and also conduct the counselling and interview for admission to the same course.

The Punjab Vidhan Sabha passed the Sri Guru Angad Dev Veterinary and Animal Science University Bill 2005 on April 19 in its budget session for the establishment of the university.

But the university has not yet come into being since the President has not granted assent to the same nor has the notification regarding its establishment been issued so far.

But the authorities of the new university have asked the Registrar of Punjab Agricultural University not to organise the admission to the College of Veterinary Sciences which is a constituent college of PAU and maintained that they would conduct the entrance test and admission.

The Secretary, Animal Husbandry, Punjab, who has been designated Vice-Chancellor of the proposed veterinary university, in a letter to the Dean, College of Veterinary Sciences, PAU, wrote on April 27, “The Guru Angad Dev Veterinary and Animal Sciences University Bill 2005 was passed by the Punjab Vidhan Sabha on April 19 and the same is under process for obtaining the assent of the President of India. As the academic session 2005-06 will be started in the new university, the necessary arrangements for the printing of prospectus etc may be made immediately so that the process of admission is started as and when the Guru Angad Dev Veterinary and Animal Science University Act 2005 comes into effect.” The Registrar of PAU was requested that prospectus for all courses which are to be transferred to Guru Angad Dev Veterinary and Animal Science University may not be published in the prospectus of the Punjab Agricultural University.

Accordingly, the PAU deleted the College of Veterinary Science courses published its own prospectus which have been on sale since may 6.

Now when the authorities of the new university have failed to get the assent of the proposed university from the President of India, they have requested the authorities of Punjab Agricultural University to organise the entrance test and counselling for admission to the BVSc course in the College of Veterinary Sciences.

The Secretary, Animal Husbandry, in a letter to the Dean Colleges of Veterinary Science, PAU, with a copy to the Registrar has stated, “The Guru Angad Dev Veterinary and Animal Science University Bill, 2005 as passed by the Punjab Vidhan Sabha has been sent to the President of India for his consideration and assent. As the process is time-consuming, it may not be possible for the new university to start the admission process as per schedule. Since the career of the students is involved , therefore , it has been decided that admission to the new academic session 2005-06 may be made by Punjab Agricultural University and it may be clearly mentioned in the prospectus that the new Guru Angad Dev Veterinary and Animal Sciences University is likely to be set up very soon, therefore, degrees to the students seeking admission during 2005-06 in the College of Veterinary Science will be conferred by the said university.”

At the same time, the Secretary, has observed, “The College of Veterinary and Animal Science is to be transferred to the new university, therefore , the income generated from the sale of prospectus, admission fee and NRI students etc may be deposited in a separate account so that the same could be transferred to the new university immediately after the same is established.”

The Registrar of PAU, Dr V.K. Sharma, said today that they would publish the supplementary prospectus now as their original prospectus was already published and was on sale.

The Registrar disclosed that the common entrance test of admission to the BVSc four-year course and BSc. (Agriculture) four-year course of College of Agriculture would be held on June 23 on the campus at Ludhiana and counselling for admission to the BVSc course would held on July 7. Counselling for BSc (agriculture) course would be held on July 8.

It is learnt that senior functionaries of the Punjab Government have not relished the mess allegedly created by the authorities of the new university. A senior functionary of the Punjab Government today rang up the Vice-Chancellor, PAU, and requested him to take steps for the conduct of the entrance test for the veterinary students. He also expressed his displeasure over the manner things had been dealt it with. The PAU authorities have assured the state government that they would hold the entrance test and admission to the College of Veterinary Science and money realised as a result of the sale of the prospectus and tuition fee would be transferred to the new university as per the rules provided in the act.

They maintained that so far the new university had not come into being and the College of Veterinary Science was an integral part of PAU. There could be no separate account for the new university.

The PAU Teachers Association president, Dr Hari Singh Brar, today criticised the “authoritarian attitude” of the state Animal Husbandry Secretary, particularly when the President has not granted his assent to the Bill and the notification for the same has not yet been issued.



MC employee threatens to consume poison
Kuldip Bhatia

Ludhiana, May 19
High drama was witnessed in the Municipal Corporation headquarters here today when a head draftsman in A Zone, Mr Updeshjit Singh, threatened to commit suicide after having been asked to explain his failure to complete an assignment within the given time frame.

According to eyewitnesses, the employee, carrying a box of rat-killer poison (quicphos), barged into the office of Assistant Town Planner (A Zone) Kanwaljit Kaur and allegedly threatened that he would consume these tablets to end his life since he was being harassed and was under great mental tension.

Some visitors to the office overpowered the employee and snatched the box of poisonous tablets from him. In the meantime, security guards of the MC Commissioner were called in, who took the employee away to produce him before the senior officers.

It was officially stated that the head draftsman was given some work which had to be completed within a stipulated time. As the employee failed to complete the task in the given time, the ATP had asked for his explanation, which apparently culminated in today’s dramatic incident.

The MC joint Commissioner, Dr Jaswant Singh, told the Ludhiana Tribune that he had received the report of the incident. He said the matter had been reported to the police for taking and the MC would also initiate disciplinary action to curb such pressure tactics.



Commuters at toll plaza a harassed lot
Lovleen Bains

Doraha, May 19
Commuters who have applied for a local pass with the National Highway Authority of India at the toll plaza in Doraha are a harassed lot. Majority of them allege that their passes are being delayed for days together even after having submitted the required documents for it. Not only this, they complain of the indifferent attitude of toll employees, who pressurise them to pay for the slip till the passes are issued to them.

The commuters residing within a radius of 0 to 10 km are issued a monthly pass of Rs 150 and for those residing between 0 and 20 km are now being issued on a monthly pass of Rs 300 as against the earlier amount of Rs 500.

Mr Jandeep Kaushal, vice-president, All-India Federation of Democratic Youth, and local resident, says: “Issuing of passes to the local commuters seems to be a big deal for the toll authorities. The procedure of its procurement is very tedious.”

Another commuter alleged that: “I have submitted the documents on March 30 but till date I have not been issued the pass. Earlier, I was told that my documents have been misplaced, now the toll authorities contend that they are sent to Ambala for further verification.”

Ms Amandeep Grewal, a lecturer in a local college, who commutes from Ludhiana daily, says: “Earlier, I used to commute on car, the documents of which I have submitted to the toll authorities. After a month or so I learnt that the toll authorities have misplaced the documents. Again it has been nearly one-and-a-half month now when I submitted the documents of my changed vehicle but was astonished to hear that they are again misplaced. I am at a double loss.”

The additional toll manager, however, said they had not received any complaint in this regard. Moreover, he denied that the commuters had to suffer on account of any delay in the issuance of passes. He maintained that since the documents had to be verified at Ambala, the process for issuing passes required some time.

“We will definitely take action if any of our employee is found guilty of misbehaving or pressurising the commuters,” he added.



Uncertainty over screening of ‘Jo Bole So Nihal’
Vimal Sumbly
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 19
Uncertainty over screening of “Jo Bole So Nihal” persisted as the theatre owners here were been told to make alternative arrangements in case they were not to show the movie tomorrow. It is learnt that the distributor of the movie had asked the theatre owners running the movie in the state to wait. The movie was released in Punjab last Friday and was running full house so far.

Although some symbolic protests marked the release of the movie last Friday, it ran full house the whole week, particularly after the film producers clarified that there was nothing religious in the movie. Some theatre owners said that the film was being liked by the people since it was a hilarious comedy with Sunny Deol in the lead role.

However, it was not certain whether the movie would continue to be screened tomorrow or not. Currently, it is running in the Shinghar cinema. The administration had taken all precautions to ensure that there was no untoward incident as some religious groups had threatened to disrupt the screening of the movie.

After a lot of hype created due to the demand for banning the movie, some other cinema halls in the city were also scheduled to screen it from tomorrow. However, the theatre owners said, they were not sure whether it could be screened from tomorrow or not as the distributors was awaiting directions from the producers who were in negotiations with the SGPC authorities.

A senior official in the local administration said that all precautionary measures were being taken in the wake of threats by some organisations to “physically stop and prevent” the screening of the movie. The official maintained that law and order would be ensured at all costs.



IT officials conduct search operations
Our Correspondent

Khanna, May 19
Officials of the Income Tax Department conducted search operations on two business premises in Khanna this morning.
According to information, the officials from Jalandhar and Ludhiana were among those who conducted the search operations at a cattlefeed factory on Samrala Road and on the premises of a doctor in the Purana Bazar area.

Mr Ajay Sharma, Mr Devinder Singh and Mr Sarbjit Singh were among the team. The officials refused to disclose any information about the search.



Passing Thru

Sanjay Sachdev
Mr Sanjay Sachdev, Managing Director and CEO, Principal PNB Asset Management Company Pvt Ltd 

What are the factors one needs to keep in mind before investing his money?

Risk and returns are the factors an investor needs to keep in mind before making an investment. One has to consider his risk taking ability and cautiously select the company, be it mutual funds or shares, before taking a decision to invest. Besides, there are other factors like tax saving etc.

How is the Principal Junior Cap Fund, being offered by your company, different from other funds?

It is a diversified equity fund that seeks to invest in a flexible manner across market capitalisation range. The difference comes in the portfolio’s choice of range of capitalisation, which will have a bias towards stocks that comprise the CNX Nifty Junior Index complemented by mid cap stocks to create a blended portfolio. This fund would aim to construct a portfolio with a blend of large cap and mid cap stocks. This combination seeks to provide a portfolio that has the potential for growth beyond the ordinary while carrying risks lower than that of a pure mid cap fund.

How do you think can companies generate awareness among investors?

Financial markets have witnessed tremendous changes including change in the attitude of investors. Besides, companies are also increasingly working towards generating awareness among investors. An effective way is to do it through agents and financial advisors who reach out to a large number of people.

— Shveta Pathak



Rise in panchayats’ income from auctions
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 19
Extensive monitoring of lease auctions of agricultural panchayati land by the district administration has resulted in substantial increase in the income of the panchayats in the district.

Deputy Commissioner Anurag Verma reviewed the progress of the auction process at a meeting of SDMs and BDPOs held his under chairmanship here today.

The SDMs informed that they were personally attending the auctions in those villages, where panchayati land was more than 50 acres and Tehsildars were attending the auctions in those villages, where panchayati land was between 20 and 50 acres, to ensure the minimum increase of 10 per cent every year.

The DC informed that in Samrala block, out of the 32 villages, the auction in 28 villages had been completed and the revenue had been enhanced from Rs 19 lakh to Rs 22 lakh. Mr Verma further informed that in Machhiwara block in some villages, the increase had been recorded up to 30 per cent from last year.

In Shtabgarh village, the income of the panchayat had increased from Rs 4.50 lakh to Rs 6.50 lakh. He said in Dhaloor village in Machhiwara, the auction rate had touched an unexpected rate of Rs 22,000 per acre and farmers of the village had given higher bids in fierce competition.

He said that in Dehlon block, out of the total 47 villages, the auction had been completed in 23 villages and the revenue had recorded an increase of 10 per cent from Rs 22 lakh last year to Rs 24.44 lakh this year and in Sudhar block, the auction had been completed in nine villages, out of the total 17 and increase of 20 per cent has been reported.

Giving further details, Mr Verma informed that in Ludhiana East, the auction also fetched good increase. In Ghumana village, the income of panchayat had been enhanced by Rs 2 lakh, in Selkiana Rs 1.75 lakh, in Machhian Kalan Rs 1.25 lakh and in Garcha village Rs 60,000.

He said in Bassian village, the panchayat income from the auction had been enhanced from Rs 2.61 lakh to Rs 3.34 lakh.

The Deputy Commissioner directed all the BDPOs to make allout efforts to ensure the presence of maximum number of bidders by giving extensive publicity to these auctions, so that the income of panchayats could be enhanced.

Giving last years’ block wise details of income from the panchayati land, Mr Verma informed that Rs 6,66,61,450 was collected from the auction of lease of total 11402 acres of shamlat land in different villages of the district.

Giving block-wise details, he informed that the highest income of Rs 1,15,43,240 from 1911 acres of shamlat land had been recorded in Sidhwan Bet block closely followed by Machhiwara block of Rs 1,15,41,290 from 1937 acres. Income of Rs 99.89 lakh from 2705 acres in Ludhiana II, in Khanna Block Rs 80.57 lakh from 1027 acres, Dehlon block Rs 46.95 from 562 acres, Jagroan 46.84 lakh from 603 acres, Pakhowal block Rs 35.50 lakh from 867 acres, Raikot block Rs 32.07 lakh from 550 acres, Ludhiana –I block Rs 27 lakh from 372 acres, in Samrala block RS 29.83 lakh from 437 acres, Sudhar block Rs 24.31 lakh from 272 acres and in Doraha block Rs 12.75 lakh from 159 acres.

Mr M.S. Grewal, DDPO, assured that he would personally monitor the auction process in the entire district and efforts would be made to get maximum enhancement in the income of panchayats from the lease of shamlat land.



Work on Jawaddi Road irks residents
Kuldip Bhatia

Ludhiana, May 19
The ongoing work for the construction of the central verge on the 100-foot Jawaddi Road in the Model Town area here has drawn flak from the local residents. They allege that the contractor entrusted with the work, is negligent and the supervisory officials of the Municipal Corporation are indifferent to the suffering of the road users and the area residents.

According to area residents, first of all the work was progressing at a snail’s pace and it had been suspended a number of times for unknown reasons. Throwing to winds all norms of safety for road users, the contractor had failed to put up any warning signs about the construction work being going on. And at times the drivers failed to notice the incomplete divider, leading to accidents during the past few days.

In the absence of warning signs, several vehicles had rammed into the partially constructed central verge. Many concrete slabs had already broken, which in turn had further slowed down the pace of work.

Mr Jasbir Singh Joga and Dr Sood, both are residents them, were particularly sore over the ‘chalta hai’ attitude of the supervisory officials of the MC, who blamed the road users for accidents rather than owning the responsibility for lapse on the part of the contractor.

“Such indifferent at attitude of the civic officials concerned that a drum of water, lying right in the middle of the road at the construction site has not been shifted for the past many days despite repeated pleas to the authorities,” they rued.



Residents resent anti-encroachment campaign
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, May 19
Residents of Rarri Mohalla in Barewal village, led by activists of Shiromani Akali Dal (Badal) today protested against removal of encroachments by a team of civic officials here last evening and the MC officials had to return without taking any action in this respect for the second day in succession.

As the MC demolition team arrived in the locality to clear certain encroachments during its ongoing drive under the directions of the Punjab and Haryana High Court, a large number of affected residents questioned the MC action while claiming that they were living in these houses for several generations. The residents also raised slogans against the civic administration and Congress government in Punjab.

SAD-B leader from Dakha Assembly segment and former councillor Darshan Singh Shivalik confronted the MC officials and alleged that the demolition notices sent to the residents were wrong, illegal and politically motivated. Several area residents including Mr Sukhdev Singh, Mr Nazar Singh, Mr Gursharan Singh, Mr Bharpur Singh, Mr Satvir Singh, Mr Udham Singh and Mr Ratan Singh Kamalpuri claimed that they owned the land on which their houses were constructed and asked the MC to get these sites demarcated once again.

The residents, while denying the allegations of encroachment on government land, further maintained that even though some of the residents did not possess title deeds of the land, they were bonafide owners of their respective properties and were paying all taxes like water and sewerage charges and house tax to the civic body.



BDPO Doraha dead
Tribune News Service

Doraha, May 19
Mr Daljit Singh, the Block Divisional and Panchayat Officer posted at Doraha, passed away last night after remaining ill for quite some time.

He was suffering from stomach infection followed by jaundice, for which he was under observation at CMC Hospital, Ludhiana. He was 42. He is survived by his wife, Parminder Kaur, and children.

He was cremated at his native village Jugiana. 



Market Pulse
Capital fund launched
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 19
Principal PNB Asset Management Company Private Ltd, in association with Vijaya Bank, announced the launch of its new scheme “Principal Junior Cap Fund”, here today. The new fund offering would be on till June 8.

Mr Sanjay Sachdev, Managing Director and CEO of the company, said the fund would construct a portfolio combining large cap and mid-cap stocks. “This would offer dual advantage of stability and growth,” he said.

The fund offers the investors two investment options of growth and dividend. The minimum application amount for both options is Rs 5,000, he said.

Mr Harwant Singh, General Manager, Punjab National Bank, Punjab zone, who was the chief guest, said the asset management company was a joint venture of Principal Financial Group, Punjab National Bank and Vijaya Bank.

Models display a collection of watches in Ludhiana on Thursday
Models display a collection of watches in Ludhiana on Thursday. — A Tribune photograph

LAUNCHED: The Longines on Thurdsay launched its DolceVita collection. The Longines would sell these watches at Ethos, one of the leading chains of showrooms in the country. According to Mr G. Kannan, country manager, Swatch Group India, manufacturers of the watches, the DolceVita diamond collection range starts from Rs 53,000. It comes in a choice of mini, lady’s and mid sizes, “all tailored to feminine wrists”. The stainless steel case is available with a setting of 32 and 28 diamonds fitted with quartz movement.

PROGRAMME: Dettol has launched a nationwide health and hygiene programme on mother and baby care. The month-long activity by the company would focus on care of the newborn and aim to educate new mothers across hospitals.

RANGE: Monte Carlo has introduced Cool Finish, a range of 3/80s 100 per cent cotton premium light weight chinos. A company press note said the company was also offering expandable trousers which could be adjusted as per the user’s waist size for a perfect fit. 


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