R E G I O N A L   B R I E F S

Regional potpourri


SIKH JATHA: A Sikh jatha will leave for Pakistan on June 22 to observe the death anniversary of Maharaja Ranjit Singh . It will return on June 30. Mr Harpal Singh Bhullar, president, International Bhai Mardana Yadgari Kirtan Darbar Society, said according to the tentative programme the jatha will remain at Nankana Sahib on June 23 and 22. On the next two day it will stay at Gurdwara Panja Sahib while on the last three days it will visit Gurdwara Dera Sahib, Lahore.

MUSICAL NITE: A music night ‘Punjabi Beats’ was jointly organised by Alpha Punjabi and ETC Punjabi here on Friday. Shankar Sahni, Mikka besides other singers regaled the audience.

ELECTED: The following have been elected office-bearers of the AIHRA: chief secretary - Dr Shubh Darshan; joint secretaries — Mr Kulwant Singh Matharu and Mr Ashok Kumar Soni; organising secretaries — Lt Col Bishan Dass (retd), Mr Bikramjit Singh Khaira Giani Purshottam Singh, Mr Sanjeev Jain, Mr Kuldip Singh Sallow; press secretaries — Mr Davinder Sharma and Mr Sanjay Garg and administrative secretary — Mr Ajit Singh Multani.

RECOVERED: The police has recovered theft money of Rs 12 lakh, and arrested Jaswant Singh. Rakesh Kumar, one of the partners of Deep Solvex Plant, has complained that his employee Jaswant Kumar had fled away with Rs 12 lakh. Jaswant Singh was employed to collect payments from different customers of the solvex plant

CAMP: A two-day free medical check-up camp was organised at Sidhu Hospital, Doraha. It concluded here on Sunday. Around 170 patients suffering from hernia and piles were examined during the camp. Dr Guldip Singh Sidhu, director and chief of surgery at Sidhu Hospital addressed patients on cure of piles and hernia. He said laproscopic repair provided better cure for piles then conventional techniques.

100 per cent results: Tagore International Senior Secondary School, Sahnewal, got 100 per cent results in the class X. Mamta Mahan stood first in the school by securing 90 per cent marks, Harjit Sandhu stood second with 88 per cent marks and Sukhdeep was third with 87 per cent marks. Sixtyfive per cent students got first division and 35 per cent got second division. Mr B.K. Aneja, president of school management committee, congratulated the Prncipal, Mrs Renu Singh, staff and students of the school for putting in hard work.

The Punjab and Haryana High Court Judge, Mr J.S. Narang, on Saturday inspected courts in the Sessions Division, Kapurthala, besides having interaction with members of the Bar Association. Mr Justice Narang inspected the court of Senior Division Judge at Sultanpur Lodhi and later he inspected courts at Kapurthala.

TRIBUTE TO SUNIL DUTT: A meeting to mourn the death of film actor Sunil Dutt was organised by the Malwa Sabhyacharak Manch, Punjab, here today under the chairmanship of Krishan Kumar Bawa. Pawan Dewan, president of the manch, said it was the manch who had given Shanti Doot Award to him three years ago. Ravinder Ganguwal, Surinder Singh, Pawan Garg, Joginder Singh and Vaid Sawarn Dass were among those who attended the meeting. 

SARDAR OBEROI REMEMBERED: A meeting of Khanna Press Club was organised under the presidentship of Iqbal Singh in memory of Sardar Singh Oberoi. Sardar Singh died on Sunday after a brief illness. Journalists Somesh Batta, Kamaljit Kamal, Sunil Sharma, Pardeep Happy, Vikram Mann, Jatinder Bittu, Pawan Dheer, Harish Gupta, Sat Pal Bhambri, Mangat Singh and Harpreet Singh Prince attended the meeting. One-minute silence was observed in memory of the late Sardar Singh. 

CONTEST: The Niharika Ladies Club organised “Summer Queen” contest here on Friday. In this programme, more than 30 members of the club presented their talent. There were three age groups for the contest, above 45 years of age, 30-45 years of age and the last group was below 30 years of age. Ms Bharati, a beautician of the town, was the judge.

WORKSHOP: A five-day workshop on personal grooming by Indra Ahluwalia at Grace Beauty Clinic and Institute concluded on Saturday. Topics like skin care, make-up tips, hair care and hair styles were discussed at the workshop.

BOOKED: Two persons, Malwinder Singh, alias Lovely, a resident of Ramditterwala and Sunil Kumar, a resident of Rohtak, have been booked for their alleged involvement in selling stolen vehicles and preparing the fake documents of those vehicles. A case under Sections 379, 411, 467, 468, 420 and 120 of the IPC has been registered against the accused.

MEDICAL CAMP: The Army organised a free medical check up camp under the aegis of the Army Women Welfare Association (AWWA) at Tareti village, near here on Saturday. The camp was organised in the form of a polyclinic concept which included dental, OPD and ancillary services. Information on the ex-servicemen Contributory Health Scheme and smart card was also provided and free forms were distributed to ex-servicemen.

DISTRIBUTED: Ms Baljinder Kaur Mann, wife of Joginder Singh, Chairman Punjab Agro Foods Corporation, on Saturday distributed cheques worth Rs 9,50,000 for the construction of rooms and sanitation blocks in schools under the ‘Sarb Siksha Abhiyan’ at Chachoki village. As many as 222 persons were given pension under the old age, widow and physically challenged category.

NABBED: The Noormahal police has nabbed a member of the hawala racket and recovered Rs 1,56,000 from him. The police said on Sunday that the accused had been identified as Harbhaghan Singh of Bhagatpura mohala of Phagwara.

Tarn Taran
ONE KILLED: One person was killed and three others were injured in a road accident near Doburji village on Saturday. The police has registered a case under Sections 304A, 279, 337, 338, 427 of the IPC against Sushil Kumar, driver of the Tata Indica, allegedly responsible for the accident.

BOOKED: Manga Singh, a resident of Patti township, was booked under Sections 294, 509 of the IPC for passing indecent remarks against girls passing through the streets of the town.



ELECTED: The following have been elected office-bearers of the local Kashmir Sahayak Sabha: president — Mr G.L. Kaul, vice-president — Ms Usha Ambardar and Mr H.N. Raina; general secretary — Mr Rajesh Moza; joint secretary — Mr P.J. Durani; financial secretary — Mr Ramesh Madhan, and social secretary — Ms Santosh Kaul.

LAUNCHED: For effective management of diabetes, Medtronic insulin pump has now been launched in North India. Pump is designed to provide precise insulin doses to help improve patients’ health

OFFICE-BEARERS: The meeting of members of the Lion’s Club, Chandigarh Midtown, was held on Friday at Sector 9 under the chairmanship of Mr. B.S. Jaswal where the following office bearers were elected. Chairman-Mr. B.S. Jaswal President-Mr Sarwan Kumar Sharma General Secretary-Mr Som Dutt Sharma Treasurer-Mr Munish Kaul Public Relations Officer-Mr Vinod Rattan Directors-Mr Prem Kaushik, Mr. K L Jain, Mr Raman Chakarsal, Mr Surinder Kumar and Immediate Past President-Mr Madan Kumar Gupta.

Press Club workshop: The Chandigarh Press Club is organising a summer workshop for the children of its members from June 1 to 15. The timings will be from 9 am to 11 am. The activities will include classical dance, western dance, art and craft, oil and fabric painting and theatre workshops. Children between the age of 5 to 15 years can participate in it. Members can register the names of their children by May 29. The inaugural function will be held on June 1 at 10 am on the club premises.

Office-bearers: The following have been elected office-bearers of the Chandigarh Malayalee Association: president - Mr Sasi Kumar; vice president - Mr Rajendra Prasad; secretary - Mr Binoy Joseph; joint secretary - Mr Pradeep Kumar; treasurer - Mr K.S. Dass; executive members - Mr Abraham John, Mr Thomas T.T., Mr Kumargi, Mr Sankara Pillai and Ms Girija Chaudhary; auditor - Mr Suresh K.N.; returning officer - Mr Jose. 

Appointed: Dr A.R. Kidwai, Governor of Haryana, who is also the president of the Indian Red Cross Society, Haryana state branch, and St John Ambulance Association, Haryana State Centre, has appointed Dr Subhash Chander Bhardwaj, Civil Surgeon (retd), honorary secretary, Indian Red Cross Society, Haryana state branch, and St John Ambulance Association, Haryana State Centre, Chandigarh. 

CHECK-UP CAMP: Fortis Hospital here will organise a one-day free pulmonology check-up camp at the hospital tomorrow, during which free consultation will be given for lung diseases, malignancy, chronic obstructive pulmonary disorders, asthma and other respiratory problems. Also, free lung function test (Spirometry) will be conducted to assess the condition of the lungs of patients.

Water supply: Residents of Phase XI (East) here have been receiving dirty and low-pressure water supply for the past few days. They have asked the department concerned to rectify the water supply. 

COLLECTED: A team of Vigilance officials led by Phool Chand, inspector, and Mr R.P. Garg, Executive Officer, Vigilance Department, today collected six samples (two each from Sectors 2, 4 and 6) of the footpaths and material used in developing parks. These samples were collected as a part of the vigilance inquiry into the alleged use of poor quality material for the construction of footpaths and development of parks.

Nature camp: About 110 students of Moti Ram Senior Secondary School, Panchkula, and Guru Nanak Public School, Chandigarh, attended a nature camp at Nature Park, Sector 26, Chandigarh, and Nature Discovery Commonwealth Youth Programme Asia Centre, Chandigarh. The camp was organised by Environment Society of India to celebrate World Biodiversity Day.

Loans disbursed: Mr K.K. Chattopadhyay, Deputy General Manager, State Bank of Patiala, disbursed loans amounting to Rs 43 lakh to 43 persons on Monday under the personal segment scheme at the Kalka branch of the bank.

Bangiya Parishad: The women wing of Bangiya Parishad organised a cultural evening based on the literary works of Rabindra Nath Tagore here on Sunday evening. Children, dressed in bright costumes, presented cultural items. The vice-president of Bangiya Parishad, Mr Rajiv Kundu, attended the function.

Free coupons: To encourage meritorious students, Hotel Pallavi, Sector 5, is giving complimentary coupons. The hotel has announced that children who have secured 75 per cent and above in their Class X and XII examinations will be given a coupon of Rs 250 each to be availed of at hotel.

Appointed: Ms Anju Saini, a local advocate, has been appointed the standing government counsel for Central government cases and cases filed against public offices before the district court, consumer forum and tribunals at Panchkula.

BJP meeting: A meeting of the district unit of the BJP was held on Sunday under the chairmanship of the district party president, Mr B.K. Nayar. The meeting was held to discuss the silver jubilee celebrations of the BJP and an 11-member committee of party leaders was formed to discuss the issue.



POPPY HUSK SEIZED: The police seized 23 kg of poppy husk from Karnoli village in this district and has registered a case in this regard. According to reports, a police party was going towards village when it noticed a man coming with a gunny bag on his head. The man abandoned the bag and ran away after noticing a police jeep. The police found poppy husk in the bag. The police has registered a case under Sections 15, 61 and 85 of the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances Act.

CASE SETTLED: The Motor Accident Claims Tribunals settled 16 cases in a Lok Adalat organised here on Saturday. A sum of Rs 13.57 lakh was awarded as compensation to the victims in these cases. The District Legal Services Authority (DLSA) organised the Lok Adalat. Mr Sushil Kumar Garg, Chief Judicial Magistrate, Fatehabad, and secretary of the DLSA, told media persons here on Sunday that 17 civil cases, 14 criminal cases and nine cases under the Shop Act were also settled by his court.

The police has arrested two more accused in the murder case of Israna resident Harender and his father Dayanand. The accused, Rampal of Israna and Sandeep, alias Neetu of Noorankhere village, had been absconding since June 4, 2004. Panipat SP Anil Kumar said seven other accused had already been arrested.

Pension adalats: Pension adalats will be held under the auspices of the Divisional Railway Authorities at Jaipur and Bikaner on June 15. Pending cases and other allied grievances of railway pensioners of the Jaipur division as well as the Bikaner division will be settled at these two adalats. As many as 10 cases of railway pensioners of the Rewari region have been forwarded to Bikaner division while two other cases have been submitted to the Jaipur division.

Arrested: The police has arrested two more accused in the murder case of Israna resident Harender and his father Dayanand. The accused, Rampal of Israna and Sandeep alias Neetu of Noorankhera village had been absconding since June 4, 2004.

Pension adalats:
Pension adalats will be held under the auspices of the Divisional Railway Authorities at Jaipur and Bikaner on June 15. Pending cases and other allied grievances of railway pensioners of the Jaipur division as well as the Bikaner division will be settled.



ARRESTED: The police has arrested Lekhram of Dobha village near here under Section 302 of the IPC for allegedly killing his wife Banti Devi in his house on Friday.

WATER SHORTAGE: Residents of Dalit Basti, Dugali, are sore over the inadequate supply of drinking water to their village. Village leaders Om Prakash, Nand Lal and Shiv Ram, who led a deputation to the Deputy Commissioner said all other villages were directly linked through pipes to the tank while this facility was being denied to their basti.

CRITICISED: The H.P. Medical Officer’s Association has criticised the government decision to appoint a retired CMO as lecturer, ENT, Dr R P Government Medical College and Hospital, ignoring those doctors who had completed their MD and senior residency. Dr Ajay Dutta on Saturday criticised the pick-and-choose policy of the state government.

CRAFT MELA: R.D. Nazim, Deputy Commissioner, inaugurated a 10-day-long craft mela at the Dhalpur maidan here on Saturday. The fair is being organised by the Traditional Crafts Creation Women Association, Lucknow, under the aegis of the Ministry of Textile, Government of India. As many as 120 craftsmen from 11 states of the country are participating in the fair.

BODY FOUND: The Paonta police on Friday recovered the body of a young man from a nullaha near Dhaualan Kuan under Paonta subdivision. According to police sources the body could not be identified.

PROTEST MARCH: Muslim organisations on Friday protested against the alleged desecration of Koran by the American army. At Paonta Sahib Muslim organisations held a protest march and submitted a memorandum to the Prime Minister of India through the SDM Paonta. They demanded strict action against the miscreants.

POWERS DELEGATED: The Irrigation and Public Health Department has delegated powers to the Junior Engineers to check the misuse of water during summer when many towns are facing an acute water shortage. Mr Kaul Singh, Irrigation and Public Health Minister said the IPH Department had evolved a strategy to streamline the distribution and check misuse and wastage of water and he appealed to people to extend their cooperation to ensure judicious use of water.



Message mania

Deepak Sharma of Ludhiana holding the 1410-page-long bill that he got for sending 1,82,689 SMS in one month
LONG AND SHORT OF MESSAGING: Deepak Sharma of Ludhiana holding the 1410-page-long bill that he got for sending 1,82,689 SMS in one month. Photo  — Inderjit Verma

Sending an SMS may be simple fun for most mobile phone users but for Deepak Sharma of Haibowal in Ludhiana, it is nothing short of an obsession. He sent 1,82, 689 SMS last month itself. Now, he is striving to touch the 2-lakh mark by the end of May and the 3-lakh mark next month. He had sent 91,235 SMS in March 2004, 77,000 in November last year and 1,13, 556 in January this year.

For all this prolific messaging, Deepak got a whopping 1,410-page-long bill giving details about the SMS he had sent. Owing to the sheer volume of papers, he had to take the help of a friend to show the bill around.

Interestingly though, the amount of the bill was miniscule compared to the number of messages sent. Deepak had to pay just Rs 121 for sending the 1.82 lakh-odd messages. The reason being that he had availed of a package that entitled him to unlimited SMS.

“Initially, I was not paying anything for the SMS, as under a corporate scheme I could send unlimited messages free of cost from 2003 to January this year. But seeing the high number of messages sent, the company officials wanted me to pay something,” he informs. He then started paying Rs 99 per month as charges for the unlimited SMS and went on to clock over 1.82 lakh messages in one month.

The owner of a shop that sells and repairs mobile phones, Deepak never realised that he might have set a record until he saw a programme on TV last month. A national news channel had broadcasted the interview of a youth from Kapurthala who had sent 55,000 SMS in a month recently.

He is not sure whether the Guinness Book or the Limca Book of Records have introduced a category for SMS, but he certainly would like to stake his claim for recognition.


Students undergoing training in textile and knitwear technology.
STITCH CRAFT: Students undergoing training in textile and knitwear technology. 

The Bahadurke Textile and Knitwear Association in Ludhiana has taken an initiative that has not just helped it fulfill a social responsibility but also meet its needs for trained hands. 

The association collected funds and set up an institute which provides specialised training in sewing, cutting, folding, packing, elastic moulding and button-hole stitching. The setting up of this institute assumes significance not just because it is an industry initiative, but also since it provides training on machines that are in use in the textile industry. And all this comes for a nominal fee.

While the land for the institute was given by the Sri Baba Jai Ram Das Jain Charitable Trust, the machines, on which the association spent around Rs 10 lakh, have been imported from the UK and Japan. They include laser cutters, overlocking machines from Japan, folding sets, elastic moulding machines etc. 
The association hires expert trainers, who have an experience of working in the industry, to train the students. In fact, the institute is attracting students from neighbouring areas as well.  The short duration (40 days) of the courses is an added attraction.

Not only has this helped generate employment, it has also solved the problem of labour shortage when the migrant labourers go back to their native states. The association also absorbs students in its units on completion of the courses. In the last three years of its establishment, the institute has trained over 500 students. Says Vipin Singh, a student from Phagwara: “Specialised training at such low cost is hardly available here. I am doing this course so that I may get a job in one of the textile units here.” Recognising the initiative of this association, NABARD recently started giving a grant for running the institute.

Epic contribution

Government servants generally adopt a laidback lifestyle on retirement. But for Lal Das Thakur ‘Pankaj’ it has turned out to be the most productive time of his life. At 80, he is writing poetry and has, penned a book, ‘Mahabharata Kuluvi Boli Ne’, the first version of the epic in the Kuluvi language.

Thakur was born and brought up in Chipni village of the Banjar area in Kulu district.

His son, O. C. Thakur, who is the DIG, Central Range, helped his father in editing and revising the book before it was published by the Rupi Kala Srikhand Manch, Kulu.

“I started writing the ‘Mahabharata’ after I retired in the mid-1980s and it took seven years to complete,” says Thakur, who has also written a book on Urdu shayiri in the Devnagari script, ‘Phasihat-O-Khuraphat, and translated the ‘Srimad Bhagavadgita’ into Kuluvi.

His version of the ‘Mahabharata’ has 18 parvas and 2000 chandas, and comprises 1400 pages.

He feels that the state needs to develop a language that borrows words universally from all dialects — Kangri, Kuluvi, Mandyali, Lahauli, Mahasuvi, Sirmauri and others. “It will unite the people, bridge the gap between lower and upper Himachal, and between Kuluvi and Kangri. 

It will also enrich Pahari literature and foster  brotherhood among  the people”, he says. 

Contributed by Jupinderjit Singh, Shveta Pathak and Kuldeep Chauhan


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