L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


PAU crisis ends; students agree
to pay nominal hostel charges

Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 17
The 10-day-long strike by the students of Punjab Agricultural University (PAU) ended today after they (the students) agreed to pay nominal charges for their stay in the hostel during the summer vacation. The compromise was reached between the students and the PAU authorities at a meeting held today. The university also decided to withdraw the ‘conduct probation’ for the four student leaders.

Earlier, the hostellers spent the last night in the open. They wanted to express their resentment against the decision of the university authorities to expel three of their colleagues from the hostels and also the orders of eviction in case they failed to deposit the extra fee for their stay in the hostels during the summer break. The students voluntarily stayed out of their hostels in front of the students’ home.

Braving the intense heat and mosquito bites, the students, including girls, stayed put in lawns. None of the student went inside the hostel room all through the night. “Although it was very difficult to pass the night in the open, but we wanted to register our protest in the most non-violent manner”, remarked a girl student of the College of Agriculture. In the morning, the students went to the Thapar Hall and staged a dharna.

While the modalities of the agreement between the striking students and the authorities were being worked out, it was learnt that the students had agreed to pay Rs 190 for dormitory and Rs 234 for a cubicle during the summer break. Punjab Agricultural University Students’ Union (PAUSA) president, Swaran Singh Boparai and convener Ravinder Singh said that they had to agree to the charges as some students had committed in writing to the authorities that they would be paying the charges for summer break from the year.

The PAUSA leaders expressed relief at the resolution of the crisis. They claimed it was a victory for the students as the authorities had agreed to all their demands. They said they had to agree to the summer vacation charges, which they claimed were quite nominal, for the stay in the hostel as their predecessors had committed it in writing. It was because of the resistance shown by the students led by the PAUSA that the authorities brought the charges to this amount, they claimed.



Co-op press manager, ASI held for taking bribe
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 17
The Ludhiana Vigilance Bureau today swooped down on a manager of a cooperative society press and an ASI with the Basti Jodhewal police in separate raids and arrested them for taking bribe. Avtar Singh Saran, manager of the cooperative press having its office opposite the DIG-Ludhiana Range, was caught by a Vigilance team headed by DSP Darshan Singh while taking a bribe of Rs 3.5 lakh from complainant Avtar Singh.

The press is allegedly located in a building owned by the complainant. The DSP said the complainant wanted to get the building vacated . The accused demanded a bribe of Rs 8 lakh to facilitate it. The complainant had paid him Rs 2 lakh earlier with the understanding that another instalment would be paid today.

The complainant and the Vigilance Bureau laid the trap and caught the official. Rs 3.5 lakh taken as bribe were recovered from him.

In another raid, a Vigilance team led by DSP Sajjan Singh Cheema, caught ASI Mohd Rashid while accepting a bribe of Rs 10,000 from a resident of Rajpura town in Patiala district. The complainant party was involved in a brawl at a liquor vend of District Youth Congress leader Dimple Rana last month.

He had allegedly kept some ATM cards and other documents of the complainant and wanted his palms to be greased to return those. He was called by the complainant at a PCO near the Basti Jodhewal police station today evening where a Vigilance team was waiting for him.

Sources said the ASI and the Vigilance team came to blows also as the accused tried to run away. 



They got lathis not roll numbers
Shivani Bhakoo

Ludhiana, June 17
Thanks to the apathy of the Panjab University authorities, thousands of students who have to appear in BEd exams were made to face police lathis following chaos and confusion on the Government College for Boys campus, from where they were supposed to collect their roll number slips. The students, who had come from different parts of the state said the university had charged Rs 22 from each of them for dispatching the roll number slips to them by post, but today the authorities issued a notice in various newspapers asking them to collect these from the government college here.

There were about 10,000 students, some of them accompanied by their parents, who had converged on the government college campus. The college authorities appeared to try their best to provide roll number slips to the maximum candidates. “But it was not possible for about 10 persons whom we deputed for the job to issue slips to 5,000 candidates in a single day”, said a senior official in the college. The official said those who could not be issued slips today would be given the same tomorrow as college might put some more persons on the job.

There was chaos and confusion on the campus. The authorities had to call the police, which resorted to mild lathi charge to control the students. Some of the students and attendants also suffered injuries in the process. The students were angry that they were made to wait in the scorching heat and to add to their woes they were made to face the brunt of the police lathis. Mr Bishambhar Dass, a resident of Basti Jodhewal, received head and shoulder injuries in the lathi charge, while standing in the queue.

Talking to Ludhiana Tribune, the parents said at the time of submission of forms, students were asked to deposit Rs 22 extra so that roll numbers could be sent to them by post by June 8. Many of them enquired about the same from the university authorities, but they were not given proper reply. “It was a rude shock for us when we read it in the newspaper that roll numbers could be collected from government college. They did not bother to mention in the advertisement which government college? We want to go to the Government College for Women first”, said Mr Vijay, who had come from Khanna to collect the roll number.

One of the parents alleged that the university authorities did not issue the receipt for Rs 22, which were taken from students for sending the roll numbers by post.

The students came in the morning from places like Jagraon, Moga, Samrala, Mandi Gobindgarh, Chandigarh and nearby villages. Harassed at the hands of the university authorities, they had to bear the scorching heat for more than eight hours, still about 3,000 students could not be issued the roll numbers.

Mr D.S. Gill, Principal of the college, said it was the university’s fault. The college authorities were told about issuing the roll numbers in the morning today. “Not only this, confusion prevailed as the lists were in alphabetical order and the roll numbers were sent in serial form by the university”, said Mr Gill.

Dr C.L. Narang, former Director (NSS), Panjab University, Chandigarh, who was sent by the university along with other two members in the morning, said the university would have streamlined the whole process. “We admit that a lot of confusion and chaos prevailed today. We were just three and had to tackle more than 8,000 persons here. The college authorities have cooperated very well and we even took help from one of the Senate members, Mr Jagpal Singh, to organise things here. About 2,000 roll numbers have been issued and the remaining will be issued tomorrow", said Dr Narang.



Petrol stations to remain closed on June 20
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 17
Petrol stations across the state would remain closed on June 20. Protesting against non-implementation of the agreement to increase dealer’s margin, petroleum dealers across the country would observe strike for one day.

“The agreement to the effect was signed by the marketing directors of national oil companies and the Federation of Automobile India Petroleum Traders. However, nothing has been implemented as yet,” said Mr Sumesh Chadha, president, Ludhiana Petroleum Dealers Association.

He said in protest against government’s inaction, petroleum dealers in Ludhiana would join the nationwide strike the call for which had been given by the All India Petroleum Dealers Association.



Tributes paid to Bibi Jagdish Kaur
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 17
Bibi Jagdish Kaur Tributes were paid to late Bibi Jagdish Kaur, sister of youngest martyr of the freedom movement, Kartar Singh Sarabha, on the occasion of her antim ardas at her native village in Sarabha, 25 km from here, today.

Paying tributes, Mr Ajmer Singh, ADC, said Bibi Jagdish Kaur was a noble soul and a social reformer, who during her lifetime remained active in educating the younger generation about the ideals of the martyrs and freedom fighters.

He said the Sarabha family was a pride of the country, particularly of Punjab. He said Bibi Jagdish Kaur had never demanded any thing for her family during her life, but had always been active for the development of the historic village. He said the real tributes would be to follow her footsteps and work towards a harmonious environment in the society.

Addressing the gathering Mr Mohinder Singh Kalyan, former MP, said people of the country would never forget the sacrifices of Kartar Singh Sarabha and his family. He said as a memorial a hospital had been set up in Sarabha village with financial assistance from NRIs, which was providing medical services to the people of the area. Mr Kalyan also got printed a book relating to Shaheed Sarabha in English, Hindi and Punjabi and distributed it among the people.

Among others who were present on the occasion included Mr Jagdish Singh Garcha MLA, Mr Jagpal Singh Noorpur (Kisan Union), Mr Hoshiar Singh UK and Mr Mohinder Singh Issru, Mr Avtar Singh, Chairman, Block Samiti, Pakhowal, Mr Bhag Singh Dardi and master Hernek Singh.



BJP lambasts govt for power shortage
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 17
The activists of the Bhartiya Janata Party today staged a protest demonstration against the power shortage in the city. They also burnt an effigy of the Chief Minister in front of the local office of the Punjab State Electricity Board.

The BJP leaders alleged that the state government had proved to be an all-round failure. It claimed that the industry was facing huge losses while the domestic consumers were left in the lurch to face the scorching summer heat.

The party leaders alleged that despite all this, the state government had enhanced the power tariff without increasing the power supply.

Condemning the government, they said they would be intensifying their strike in case the power supply was not improved.



Prodigies in service of God
Asha Ahuja

Ludhiana, June 17
Three siblings — two brothers, aged 7 and 5, and their sister, aged 10 years, — walked into The Tribune Office greeting every body with Jai Mata Di.
They have been blessed with many talents and they show their gratitude to God by singing devotional songs at ‘jagratas’ and ‘gurdwaras’. Jyoti has got a good singing voice besides great artistic abilities.

She can draw and paint quite well without any formal training. Similarly, the most versatile singer of them all is Deepak Dildar, who sings in praise of Mata at jagratas and at the young age of 7 has been a star performer of almost 45 jagratas.

The youngest of them all, Karan, accompanies his siblings on ‘tabla’ when they sing. His little fingers move with speed while he plays on the tabla. The unique feature of this Dildar family is that none of the three children have taken any training.

Jyoti started drawing and painting when she was in Class 1.

She just picked up a pencil and started drawing pictures. Gradually, her pictures turned alive as she started filling in colours.

She won a prize in a national contest held at Guru Nanak Stadium last year. Presently, she is taking art lessons at Master Tara Singh School where all of them are studying also.

Till very recently, she did not know that she had a good singing voice. It was discovered by her brother Deepak who sings ‘devotional songs’ with aplomb in ‘Jagratas’ and has been given the sobriquet of ‘Bhagat Ji’ by people.

This little boy is extremely religious and devotes full two hours in prayers.

He says, “My mother is extremely religious, noble and a pious lady. Under her influence only, we have become very religious. When I was four years old, I started singing devotional song.

The most amazing feature of this boy is that he writes ‘bhetan’, gazals, shabads etc in Roman English and sings them in Punjabi.

In a recently held contest, Awaaz Punjab Di, to spot talent, Deepak floored the judges, Hans Raaj Hans, Jaspinder Narula and Music Director Sachin Ahuja with his singing ability.

Deepak’s father said Haans Raj Hans was captivated with my son’s voice. He said that the boy is amazing as he is the only boy who writes the songs in Roman English and sings them in Punjabi. He will go a long way, he added.

Deepak wants to train under Dev Dilar, a noted Punjabi sufi singer. It was Deepak only who asked his sister Jyoti to sing and over come her shyness.

Karan is shy and under the shadow of his big brother but he has talent and can play ‘teen taal’, ‘jhap taal’ and other taals on stage.

The three make quite an impressive presence at city jagratas.

The young boy is very bright and writes his own bhajans and wants to become an established singer whilest the sister wants to become an artist and Karan the shy one, wants to be a tabla player.



June 19 — a day to honour your precious dad
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, June 15
A dad is a person, who is loving and kind,

And often he knows what you have on your mind.

He's someone who listens, suggests, and defends,

A dad can be one of your very best friends!

He's proud of your triumphs, but when things go wrong,

A dad can be patient and helpful and strong

In all that you do, a dad's love plays a part.

There's always a place for him deep in your heart.

And each year that passes, you're even more glad,

More grateful and proud just to call him your dad!

Thank you, dad...for listening and caring,

for giving and sharing, but, especially, for just being you!

Happy Father's Day.

While reading these words, Satnam’s eyes swelled with tears as he remembered his father who had passed away a few years ago, leaving behind a deep void in his life.

He said, "Dad — the very word evoked in me the feelings of security, protection and guidance. He was truly my friend, philosopher and guide and I miss him especially on Father's Day when all my friends buy gifts and cards for their fathers."

Fathers' Day owes to its origin to Sonora Dodd of Washington who first came up with the idea of celebrating the day.

She thought of celebrating the Father's Day while listening to a Mother's Day sermon in 1909.

Sonora wanted a special day to honour her father as he had raised six children single-handedly and since he was born on June 19, the day was chosen to be Father's Day as a tribute to his patience and his loving nature.

"I cannot think of any need in childhood as strong as the need for a father's protection," said Sigmund Freud, the great psychologist.

But commercially, Mother’s Day is more profitable than Father's Day. The hype is more, the variety in cards is more and even the gifts that children can buy for their mothers are definitely more.

Mr Mitra, a card dealer, says," There is definitely more frenzy during Mother's Day. Children of all ages come to buy cards and gifts,. For father's Day, I feel that they become very conscious and perhaps feel they are too grown up to say, I love you, dad."

When Kulvir and Amandeep, two college-going boys, were asked as to what they were planning to buy for their dad, they said, "We have a great deal of love for our fathers, but we do not believe in any formality. So on June 19, we will give him a big hug and make him happy by doing whatever he tells us to do."

Mohit, a Vaastu expert, says, “I will buy him a ring with the stone that is good for him. I am going to make his whole year's horoscope and see that if there are any pitfalls in his life he does not fall into them and stays healthy, happy and is prosperous."

Lalita, married for three decades and a mother of two kids, says, “I feel my umbilical cord is still very strong with my father. May be I am using wrong metaphor, but since my mother died when I was young, my father has been both my mum and dad.

“I honour him on Father's Day and I also teach my sons to value their own father by quoting these lines of Margaret Courtney —

"Be kind to thy father, for when thou wert young, Who loved thee so fondly as he? He caught the first accents that fell from thy tongue, And joined in thy innocent glee."



Head Constable held for graft
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, June 17
A Head Constable posted at Dakha police station has been booked under Sections 223 and 224 of the IPC and Section 13(2) of the Prevention of Corruption Act.
Mr Rajiv Ahir, SSP, said Head Constable Gulzar Singh was arrested allegedly for letting off Amandeep Singh, alias Babbu, who was arrested under the Narcotics Act after occupying bribe of Rs 500. The constable was arrested on the complaint of Daljit Singh, a former sarpanch.

Motor cycle stolen: Jaswant Singh of Rasulpur (PS Sidhwanbet) reported that his motor cycle Kawasaki Calibre (PB-25B-9720) was stolen from Bharowal Kalan village where he went to attend funeral of one of his relative. The police came to know that Ranjit Kumar, alias, Happy, of Bharowal Kalan was seen driving the motor cycle towards Bhundri.

Body found:
The police today recovered the body of a nine-year-old girl, Kayye, one of the missing victims of the Wednesday evening canal electrocution mishap.

DSP R.K. Bakshi said the police found the body 20 km downstream the Sidhwan canal. With this, the police has fished out six bodies related to that incident.

DSP Bakshi said the police would continue the search operation for more bodies.



Industrialists flay power tariff hike
Our Correspondent

Mandi Gobindgarh, June 17
In a joint press statement Mr J.P. Sharma and Mr Joy Kutty, president and general secretary, respectively, of the Steel Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Mandi Gobindgarh, have flayed the power tariff hike. The tariff revision has caused concern amongst industrialists, who claim that the industry is already passing through recession and the tariff hike with retrospective effect would aggravate the problem.

The steel industry in the state is facing tough competition due to sops given to industries in adjoining states and are now on the verge of closure, the statement said.

The chamber urged the government to withdraw the tariff hike and to take necessary steps to provide benefits like that of the neighbouring states so that the industry would become more competitive.



Workshop on foreign trade policy from June 20
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 17
The PHD Chamber of Commerce and Industry will conduct a one-day workshop on the new foreign trade policy on June 20, here.
Dr Praveen Rathi, Assistant Director, PHDCCI, informed that the workshop was being conducted in order to create awareness about the nuances of foreign trade so as to face the global competition.

The workshop would focus on the latest developments in the foreign trade policy, EPCG schemes, duty exemption / remission schemes, important policy provisions, export finance and documentation.

Among those who would address the workshop include Shri V. K. Gupta, Joint Director-General, Foreign Trade, Ludhiana, and Shri K.K. Jindal, Programme Director, National Institute of Banking and Corporate Management.



Aid for cycle manufacturers’ association
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 17
The Punjab Government has give Rs 10 lakh as grant to the United Cycle and Parts Manufacturers Association. Mr Varinder Kapoor, general secretary of the association, said: “We thankful to the Chief Minister, Capt Amarinder Singh, Mr Surinder Dawar, Parliamentary Secretary, and Mr H.S. Hanspal, PPC, for delivering the cheque of Rs 10 lakh.

He said the CM had announced a grant of Rs 25 lakh on October 26, 2003, for the Research and Development Centre building when he was here to lay the foundation stone of the centre.


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