L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Advocate, 3 others booked for munshi’s murder
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 25
A city-based advocate, Takur Singh, was today arrested with three of his alleged accomplices, including a woman, for the murder of his munshi who had been missing for over one-and-a-half month. Takur Singh is the father of well-known comedy artiste Neelu, who regularly features in the albumbs of Jaswinder Bhalla.

Takur Singh and others have been charged with murdering Lalit Kumar, alias Tony, a resident of Chowni Mohalla, here. Tony had been missing since May 12 and a complaint in this regard was lodged with the police.

The revelation has shocked the family of the victim, who were hoping that Tony would be found alive. They were also devastated realising that he was killed by his employer, who had been sympathising with the family all these days.

The three others arrested by the police are Amrik Singh, his wife Bhinder Kaur and Ashok Kumar. A team of Salem Tabri police would exhume the body from near Hoshiarpur tomorrow.

The police said during investigations it was found that relationship between the advocate and the munshi had got strained over a missing cheque. Sources said the two were at loggerhead over relationship with a woman too.

The advocate was accusing the munshi of stealing the cheque, which the latter had been denying. According to the police, the accused called Tony at his farmhouse on the Jassian road on May 12. They pressurised him to reveal the truth about the cheque. However, when Tony did not admit to theft they gave him liquor mixed with poison. His body was then dumped near Hoshiarpur.

The victim’s mother, Darshan Kalra, had lodged a complaint with the police that his son had been missing since May 12.

The police said the accused had been booked under Sections 302 and 201 of the IPC. The arrest had shocked the lawyer fraternity in the city as well as the fans of the famous artiste daughter of the accused.



PAU daily-wage staff gets salary
Financial crunch continues
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 25
Although Punjab Agricultural University (PAU) here has disbursed salary among its daily wagers, a financial crunch continues to haunt the university. University officials said the salary to the daily wagers had been paid after making some local adjustments. But, the officials admitted, the problem had been continuing for a long time now.

The university officials maintained that there was nothing new in the financial situation, which was not comfortable. The main problem remained the pending grant of Rs 10.2 crore by the state government to the university. This grant was due in the month of March. This included the salary and other liabilities.

Although the university Vice-Chancellor, Dr K.S. Aulakh, had written to the government way back in March, the grant was yet to be released. The Rs 10 crore gap, the officials pointed out, was a substantial one and it certainly disturbed the financial equilibrium of the university. The officials admitted that the state of finances in the university was poor and it required immediate release of the Rs 10 crore grant which was pending for the past four months.

The problem cropped up once again recently when the university could not pay the salary to its daily-wage employees. Earlier the problem was even with the regular staff as the salaries had been delayed by about a month.

The president of the Punjab Agricultural University Non-Teaching Employees Association, Mr D.P. Maur, said the salaries of some of the daily wagers were paid yesterday. The salary of the remaining employees would also be released in a day or two. Mr Maur said, although the university had made some temporary adjustments right now, there was no permanent solution. He hoped that the state government would release the Rs 10 crore grant at the earliest so that the problem did not get complicated.



City boy tops MCA entrance examination
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, June 25
A local student, Kunal Sablok, has got the first rank in the entrance test for admission to Master of Computer Applications (MCA) programme in NIMCET held for nine National Institutes of Technology (NITs). Kunal has scored 67.5 marks.

Formerly known as RECs, the list of NITs includes, MNNIT, Allahabad, MANIT, Bhopal, NIT, Calicut, NIT, Durgapur, NIT, Jamshedpur, NIT, Rourkela, NITK, Surathkal, NIT, Tiruchirappalli (Trichy), and NIT, Warangal. The entrance test was held on May 28 at various centres in the country, and was conducted by REC, Trichy.

Kunal prepared for his entrance examination at a local institute. The main topics comprised of mathematics, reasoning, computers and general knowledge. He has completed his schooling from SD Government College for Boys and graduation from GGNIMT, Ludhiana, in BCA. “One should be a positive thinker and work hard to realise one’s dreams and ambitions”, says Kunal. Talking to Ludhiana Tribune he said, “By working consistently towards a goal, one can achieve it.”

Besides NIMCET, Kunal has also bagged 7th rank in IIT Roorkee and 2nd in Thapar Patiala MCA entrance examinations, which were held on 8th May and 4th June 2005 respectively. Kunal is planning to take up either NIT Trichy or IIT Roorkee for the masters program. MCA is a 3 years Post Graduate Program in Computer Applications, after which Kunal plans to step into an MNC for a dream career.

His father, Mr Suresh Sablok, who is working with a hosiery mill, and mother, Mrs Manju Sablok, who is a housewife, are very happy about their son’s performance. “We were sure that our son’s hard work will pay off one day. We want him to achieve much more in life, and are thankful to God for his benevolence.” Kunal attributes his success to his parents’ support and to the local institute. “My parents have always been supportive and have encouraged me at every step”.



Transporters to observe strike on June 28
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 25
Truck operators, tempo operators and three-wheeler drivers will observe a strike on June 28 in protest against the recent hike in petroleum and diesel prices. A decision to this effect was taken at a joint meeting of the Punjab State Goods Transports Association, the Punjab Truck Operators Union and the Ludhiana Goods Transporters Association held here today.

Mr Jagdish Singh Jassowal of the Punjab State Goods Transports Association said as many as 72 unions of vehicle operators in Punjab would join the nationwide strike. There would be no loading and unloading, bookings or delivery on that day, he said.

Mr Jassowal said to make the bandh successful, various associations across the state had put volunteers on duty. The associations have also put up posters declaring the bandh in Transport Nagar.

Condemning the hike, Mr Tarlochan Singh, president, Punjab Truck Operators Union, said: “The government’s policies are having a detrimental effect on transporters’ business. But now we have decided to raise our voice against such policies.”

The associations said the business of transporters was on the verge of closure due to the government’s policies. They said the hike would not only impact transporters, but other businesses as well.

All Punjab Operator Tempo Union president, Mr Kirpal Singh Sandhu, said apart from the bandh, the operators would also hold protest dharnas at various places.



Keeping a bit of Lahore alive in the city
D.B. Chopra

Ludhiana, June 25
Like most of the Panjabis born in post-partition India, Mr Tejinder Singh (57) has a desire to see Lahore. For their fathers, who had spent a good part of their lives in what is now Pakistan, had been telling them since their early childhood that one who had not seen Lahore was not born.

Ludhiana and Lahore, in their respective Panjabs, are miles apart, but a bit of the latter continues to exist here — albeit in the form of a book shop. Lahore Book Shop, which was opened by Mr. Jeewan Singh on Nisbet Road at Lahore about a decade before the partition, is now doing business under the same banner near the Lakkar Bridge.

Mr Jeewan Singh passed away in March 1994. In his illustrious career as short story writer and a book seller, Jeewan Singh penned down nearly 30 short stories in Panjabi, some of them based on real-life characters who lived in Mardwal village of Sargodha district, his birthplace.

The beauties and natural charms of Mardwal village, as described by Jeewan Singh in his autobiography — Bahu Rang Tamashe- are, enough to arouse anybody’s curiosity about the present day Mardwal village. One would surely like to know as to whether the well, surrounded by a bunch of banana trees, still exists on the Soonkesar mountain or not. The growth of bananas near the well on the Soonkesar mountain was an unexplained magic of mother nature because there was no banana cultivation in the area. The devout, in Mr Jeewan Singh’s time, took back the bananas from near the well as ‘parshad’ as the same was believed to have come there because of the will of the God.

The village, located in a valley of the Soonkesar mountain, had a cool climate even in summers. Though there was no clove cultivation, the mountain was full of clove bushes which did not exist elsewhere in the area. But since the bushes did not bear any fruit, the inhabitants used these to brush their teeth using these as ‘datun’.

The mountain touched the boundaries of three districts namely Sargodha, Mianwali and Kaimalpur. Because of cool climate, the Deputy Commissioners of these districts shifted their headquarters to the top of the mountain in summers.

Mr Jeewan Singh has indeed painted a vivid picture of the colourful village and its beautiful surroundings.

Mr Tejinder Singh, Mr Jeewan Singh’s son, is not yet sure whether he would be permitted by the Pakistan government to visit Mardwal. He would not mind it either, he says. Because there would be nobody in that village to recognise him as the son of Jeewan Singh who did the village proud by obtaining an MA degree.

His father Munshi Maha Singh also commanded a lot of respect from the villagers as the principal of the village high school as also the adjudicator who had to settle petty land disputes on a daily basis.

Even if he is not permitted to visit Marsdwalo, Mr Tejinder Singh would be happy only to see the place on Nisbet Road where his father, though belonging to Sargodha, opened his book business for the first time and named it Lahore Book Shop. He is looking forward to the cooperation of Prof M.S. Cheema, a noted literary figure and a long-time family friend. For Prof Cheema is the man who can tell him exactly where his father’s shop stood on Nisbet Road.

Apart from Mr Jeewan Singh’s Lahore Book Shop, which migrated from Nisbet Road, Lahore, to Lakkar Bridge, Ludhiana, two other famous shops which did roaring business in Anarkali Bazar at Lahore, namely Jassal Tailors and Bhalla and Sons, also shifted to the city’s Chaura Bazar. But it is Mr Jeewan Singh’s Lahore Book Shop which is keeping Lahore alive in the city.



A mechanical engineer turned literary genius
Lovleen Bains

Kuldip Singh Dhir
Dr Kuldip Singh Dhir 

Doraha, June 25
Dr Kuldip Singh Dhir is a mechanical engineer who failed to abandon his first love for literature. His obsession for literature was so intense that he did docterate in Punjabi literature. His literary works in Punjabi has made him equally popular among scientists and scholars.

Born on November 15, 1943, at Mandi Baha-ud-din in district Gujarat, Dr Dhir graduated in mechanical engineering and technology from Patiala in 1966. He served as research investigator with the IIAMR, Delhi, assistant professor, Department of Mechanical Engineering, VP Agriculture University, Pant Nagar, Uttaranchal, and Technical officer, Department of Industries, Government of Rajasthan.

He finally decided to devote himself to the cause of Punjabi language and literature. A scholar of Punjabi, Hindi, English, Urdu and Sanskrit, he did his masters degree from Punjabi University, Patiala, as a teacher and researcher. He had been Dean, faculty of languages of the university, from May 1999 to May 2001.

Dr Dhir has written on various aspects of Punjabi language, literature and culture. He has been listed in the who’s who of Indian Writers’ Sahitya Academy of India, Marquis who’s who in the world (USA), the Dictionary of the International Biography (England), International Directory of Distinguished Leadership (USA) and many other such publications.

He has to his credit 37 books, including ‘Paryogic Bhartik Vigyan,’ ‘ Sikh Raj De Veer Nayak,’ ‘Daryanvan Di Dosti,’ ‘Vigyan Dee Dunia’ ‘Gurbani’, ‘Jote Ate Jugat’, ‘Gian Sarovar’, ‘Computer’, ‘Kahani Atom Bomb Dee’, ‘Jehaz Rocket Atc Upgreh’, ‘Taria Ve Teri Lo’, ‘Dharat Ambar Dian Batan’ etc. He was awarded for his writings by the National Productivity Council in 1967. In 1998, the Guru Gobind Singh Study Circle honoured him with Bhai Santhokh Singh Puraskar. The Sain Mainmeer Trust honoured him in 2000.

He was also awarded the Shiromani Punjabi Lekhak award for year 1999 by the Punjab Government,

Dr M.S. Randhawa Award by the Language Department in 2003, and Dr M. S. Randhawa Gian Vigyan Award in 2004.

Dr Dhir feels that Punjabi is one of the richest languages as it holds 12th position in the world languages with 14 crore people speaking it.



Film sought on life of Banda Singh Bahadur
Our correspondent

Mandi Gobindgarh, June 25
A talk on “life history of Baba Banda Singh Bahadur’, the great warrior of Sikh history, was organised on the campus of RIMT-Institute of Engineering and Technology. Participating in the talk, the speakers threw light on various aspects of the multi-faceted personality of the great martyr.

In his welcome address, Dr B.S. Bhatia, Director, RIMT-Institute of Management and Computer Technology, described how Baba Banda Singh Bahadur became a great general and strengthened the foundation of Sikh state.

Mr Hukam Chand Bansal, chairman RIMT Group of Institutes, also participated in the discussion. He assured the participants that all the educational institutes of the trust were committed to providing resources to students to excel not only in academics but also to help them in their mental development based on religious and social values.

Mr K.K. Bhatnagar, Principal Secretary, Technical Education and Industrial Training, Punjab, was the main resource person. Quoting from his novel on Baba Banda Singh Bahadur he said this great warrior held a unique place in the history of India and brought tyranny of rulers of that time.

He appealed the Punjab government to make a film on the life of Baba Banda Singh Bahadur so that the younger generation got inspiration from his achievements.



Yoga camp
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, June 25
A one-month-long yoga training camp for children organised by the local Bharatiya Yog Sansthan in Rose Garden here from June 1 would conclude on Sunday. Selected students from the camp will give a demonstration of what they have learnt during the training programme from 6 am to 7 am. Mr S.R. Mittal, a naturopath, will give tips on food therapy.



Factory watchman shot
Our correspondent

Mandi Gobindgarh, June 25
Two persons scaled the boundary wall of a factory godown here and allegedly fired at a chowkidar last night. The chowkidar was taken to the local Civil Hospital where he died.

Mr Daljit Singh Rana, DSP, Amloh, said on the complaint of watchman Santosh Kumar, a resident of Bihar, a case under various sections of the IPC and the Arms Act has been registered.

Two persons scaled the boundary wall of the industry and entered its premises. They fired at Rajesh Yadav who fell unconscious. He later died at hospital. 



‘Midnight bazar’ a new attraction
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, June 25
‘Midnight Bazaar- Consumex 2005’ an exhibition cum sale of handicraft, handloom and various other consumer items put up at Government College for Women here, has become an attraction for city residents. The entry hours for the nine-day exhibition which started on June 18, are from 4 pm to 10 pm.

More than 150 stalls have been put up by people, who have come from all over India. Stalls of handicraft from Uttar Pradesh, handloom, cotton kurtas for men and women both, artificial jewellery, books, pottery, cane furniture and consumer goods are attracting crowds.

Mr Sandeep Chabra, organiser of the exhibition said that artisans have come from places like UP, Mumbai, Delhi, Ferozabad, Lucknow etc and the response has been excellent.

“City residents have also shown interest in consumer products like kitchen appliances, refrigerators, televisions, automobiles etc. We have already put many exhibitions at places like Chandigarh, Dehradun, Jaipur, Patiala and Rajasthan and consumers have responded well,” said Mr Chabra.

Divit Maini, a seven-year-old boy, accompanied with his mother said that he enjoyed the exhibition as the stalls were tastefully decorated and properly lighted. “I have got very nice story books and a bracelet for myself and a few toys for my little brother”, he said.


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