L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Murder accused captured by intrepid residents
Police to honour them for bravery
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 8
It is common for people to remain mute spectators to a crime or refuse to bear witness to it later on. But some residents of Dhakka Colony set a rare example of confronting criminals when they caught two armed persons who had murdered a youth in a crowded market in the colony late last evening.

The accused — Tony Gill and Ashok Kumar — had allegedly stabbed to death a youth, Sanju, in the market around 8 pm yesterday.

Normally, the criminals would have managed to flee without anyone stopping them. But area residents led by Neetu Kalyan and Arun Bedi showed exemplary courage and pounced upon the accused, leading to their capture.

SP (Detective) Gurpreet Singh today announced that the city police would honour the residents, especially Neetu Kalyan and Arun Bedi, for their
act of bravery.

He said they had risked their lives, as the alleged criminal were armed with sharp-edged weapons.

SI Rajesh Kumar, SHO Model Town, said the accused had attacked the youth without giving anyone the chance to come to his rescue.

The motive behind the murder was an old rivalry between them besides the quest for winning the love of a girl.

Sanju (22) was stabbed in the chest and abdomen. A post-mortem examination report confirmed that the knife had pierced his heart on two occasions causing his immediate death.

After attacking the youth, the accused brandishing sharp-edged weapons tried to pierce through the crowd. However, they failed as the residents caught hold of them.

A team of Model Town police also reached the spot and took the two
into custody.

Talking to reporters, Ms Kalyan and Mr Bedi said they could not control themselves after seeing the gory murder of the youth.

They were shocked to see that the accused had no fear of anyone and had murdered someone without having scant regard for human life.

They said everything happened in a jiffy, else they would have saved
the youth.

The SP said the residents would be honoured to encourage others to follow suit. “Crime cannot be wiped out but if residents help the police in nabbing criminals the rate of such incidents can definitely come down,” he said.



Improvement Trust turns perpetrator?
‘Usurps’ 990 sq yds of society land
Kanchan Vasdev
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 8
The Ludhiana Improvement Trust, (LIT) has been accused of having encroached upon 990 sq yds of land in Shaheed Bhagat Singh Nagar for constructing flats under its 475-acre residential scheme. According to the revenue records, the piece of land worth crores belongs to Kabir Cooperative House Building Society.

While LIT officials claimed that the land belonged to the trust and the society had occupied 70 per cent of it while it was given 55 per cent land in the area, office-bearers of the society alleged that the land located near the community hall in Block-C of SBS Nagar belonged to the society.

Interestingly, the records, in the possession of Ludhiana Tribune, show the registration of the land in the name of the society, in a Jamabandi of 2001-2002.

An agreement between the society and trust, effected on September 21, 1999 over the possession of the land, also supports the claims of the society.

Residents of SBS Nagar state that as per the notification of the Local Bodies Department (no. 277-DSLG-iii-81/33393 dated 5.11.81), the land allotted to a society could not be acquired by any authority for a residential scheme. Yet the LIT had acquired the land flouting the norms.

As per the copy of agreement, the society had paid an amount of Rs 76 lakh over a period of time to the LIT as development charges. The piece of land was demarcated by a Kanungo, Mr Nahar Singh.

“We, the law abiding citizens of the society, ridicule a commoner if he grabs somebody’s land. But here the trust itself has acquired our land despite knowing that we have been exempt by the laws laid down by the state government. We will not give up till the justice is served,” said Mr Bhagwan Singh, president of the society.

Mr Subhash Verma, treasurer, said it was undemocratic to acquire the land by a government agency by flouting its own norms. Moreover, he added that they had paid the development charges for the land.

The controversy is set to delay the work on 475-acre development scheme under which the trust will allot some residential flats to the allottees. The project is yet to take off due to certain problems, although it was announced many years ago.

Mr D.C. Garg, Executive Officer, LIT, said the society had already filed a suit for permanent injunction in the case. He said the court had granted a status quo in the case and they were not touching that piece of land.

He said the trust would follow the decision of the court in the case. He asserted that the trust was also going to file another suit against the society for occupying another piece of trust land.



Bandh observed in Doraha over Gohana incident
Our Correspondent

Doraha, September 8
Bandh was observed here today on a call given by members of the Dalit community in protest against the burning of houses in Gohana, Haryana, recently.

Around 150 persons from the Valmiki community held a protest march in the main market of the town. Various associations and unions, including the Kariyana Merchants’ Association, the Cloth Merchants’ Association, the Maniari Association, the Electronics Union, the Hardware Union, etc. supported the bandh by closing their shutters for the day.

All business establishments, including grocery, confectionary furniture, hardware and sanitary stores; and sweets and cloth shops, remained closed.

Vice-president of the Valmiki Association Johny Badlan said the Gohana incident had shaken the community. He sought the dismissal of Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda. He also demanded registration of cases against the guilty.

Expressing resentment against the violence, he said: “We are here to protest peacefully over the recent incidents.”

President, Cloth Merchants’ Association, Raju Tiwari said: “All associations and unions have supported the bandh call as the Valmiki community has every reason to protest against any sort of injustice done to the community.”

They later burnt the effigy of Bhupinder Singh Hooda. The bandh passed off peacefully with no untoward incident.

According to SHO, Payal, Paramjit Singh, security had been beefed up in the town.



Ex-cop’s grandson goes missing
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 8
Mystery shrouds the disappearance of a grandson of a retired Inspector of the Punjab Police, who went missing on August 5 and has been untraced ever since.

In a report lodged with Division No 2 police, the former Inspector, Jaswant Singh, a resident of Punjab Mata Nagar, said his grandson, Harjit Singh (31), had been searching for a new job after resigning from a local company.

He said on August 5 he had left his house but not returned. The police has alerted police stations in the district and surrounding areas but no headway has been made so far.

Police sources said the family had not received any threat or ransom call.



Rain chokes sewer system in Feroze Gandhi market
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 8
The sewerage system of the Feroze Gandhi market choked today with drain pipes in the shops overflowing with dirty water following sharp showers of rain today evening.

The system was creating a problem for the past many days and parking lots in the area were filled with sewer water. Traders and shopkeepers of the markets had complained to the authorities concerned but to no avail.

The situation worsened in the evening with water entering the shops and causing loss to the traders. A vehicle of the local MC visited the spot but could not do much to help the suffering shopkeepers.

‘‘We had been complaining against the problem for the past many days, but they did not listen. Now things have come to such a pass that our expensive goods stored in the shops are facing damage. Our basement shopkeepers are suffering even more,’’ said Mr T.S. Monga, an office-bearer of the Market Association.

‘‘We had spent crores of rupees on buying shops in this market. Why should we suffer because of the inaction of the local body? Afterall, we are paying all kinds of taxes to them and if they do not care about our problems who should we go to?’’ he asked.



Anganwari workers hold protest
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, September 8
Members of the Anganwari Mulazam Union, Punjab, held a dharna in front of the Mini Secretariat here today.

The were protesting against the opening of pre-nursery schools under the Sarv Shikhye Abhiyan.

Addressing block-level secretaries of the union, members of the union said nursery education was already being provided by Anganwari workers and there was no need for opening such schools.

They alleged that with the opening of these schools, 30,000 Anganwari workers would lose their jobs.

They said they would protest in front of Harnam Dass Johar’s residence and burn his effigy on September 10 if these schools were not closed down immediately.

They said the union was making rightful demands and if the government failed to pay heed to these, they would block roads on September 29. 



Passing Thru

Mr K.N. Memani
Mr K.N. Memani, president, PHD Chamber of Commerce and Industry

What is the PHDCCI’s focus in its centenary year celebrations?

Our aim this year is to focus on improving government-industry dialogue. We want to come out with a road map for improving industry’s competitiveness. The initiative is being taken at all the 11 places where the Chamber has its presence.

What are the key issues ailing industry in Punjab?

While the locational disadvantage has been neutralised by the enterprising spirit of people here and the conducive industry environment built by the state government, the state has a long way to go in the current competitive global scenario.

In this connection, the government’s support and policies to supply power at low cost are extremely important. Besides, constructing a pipeline for supply of natural gas, providing investor-friendly environment to high-potential growth industries like IT and ITES, biotechnology and agro processing, establishing R&D centres in biotechnology, identifying new destinations for developing airports and implementing infrastructure projects through private sector participation are other areas that need to be focussed upon.

Due to its power problems, do you think Punjab has become an unattractive industry destination?

It would be wrong to say that the state is unattractive destination for industry. It has a lot of advantages like easy availability of labour and an industry-friendly environment, which make it an attractive destination.

— Shveta Pathak



MC cuts water, sewerage connections of defaulters

Ludhiana, September 8
The Ludhiana Municipal Corporation (LMC) has started disconnecting water and sewerage connections of the city residents for not paying the pending bills.

The axe has already fallen on nine consumers in Zone-B for not paying the bills worth thousands for the past many months.

The MC has warned the residents to deposit the bills soon otherwise their connections would also be cut. And they would be required to pay for the disconnection and subsequent reconnection also.

Despite warnings by the local body, many residents are not paying the sewerage and water bills. After assurances from a senior Congress leader, who had told the residents not to deposit the bills as he would get them exempted from doing so, the residents had not heeded to the warnings and are now left to face the music. — TNS



LIC holds contest for kids
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, September 8
A drawing and painting competition for children of classes I to VIII from various schools was organised in the LIC’s Divisional Office at Durgri here today as part of its golden jubilee celebrations.

More than 500 children from various schools, including Guru Nanak Khalsa Girls Senior Secondary School (Gujarkhan), Model Town, New Era High School, Dugri, R S Model Senior Secondary School, Shastri Nagar, Joseph’s School, Dhandra Road, Dugri, MGM Public School, Dugri, and Government Model Senior Secondary School, Model Town, Ludhiana, Guru Ram Dass Public School, BCM Senior Secondary School and some open entrants participated in this drawing and painting competition.

All tiny tots were seen immersed in their own world of fantasy and colours. They could be seen drawing from toys to the bounties of nature out of various topics chosen by the LIC. All children were at their creative best.

Mr D.K. Bhagat, Senior Divisional Manager, LIC, Ludhiana, gave away certificates to all participants. 



Cong, BJP men file papers for byelection
Vimal Sumbly
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 8
While the BJP and SAD are adamant on fielding their own candidates from the Ward 66 where the byelection is to be held on September 18, the Congress also appears to be a divided house with not many leaders happy with Mr Subash Taina who has been fielded by the party from here. While SAD candidate Ajit Singh Dhillon filed his nomination papers yesterday, BJP candidate Charanjit Bhargava and Congress candidate Subash Taina filed their papers today.

The ward fell vacant after sitting Congress councillor Satpal Puri was disqualified. He was trying for the nomination of his son from the ward. However, the Minister of State for Science and Technology and Industrial Training, Mr Rakesh Pandey, in whose Assembly segment (Ludhiana North) the ward falls, insisted on Mr Taina. There was considerable opposition to his nomination within the party.

Despite the support from Mr Pandey, Mr Taina may have to face a tough time with the opposition within the party remaining as much as from the outside. Mr Puri, who was made to vacate the seat would also not like him to win from here. That makes Taina’s job more difficult. However, the Mayor, Mr Nahar Singh Gill, told The Tribune, that he would convene a meeting of all councillors and party leaders to ensure that their candidate wins. He said he was confident that personal interests would be ignored in the overall interest of the party.

While Mr Dhillon filed his nomination papers yesterday, the BJP candidate filed his papers today. Both the parties have staked their claim for the seat. The BJP has been arguing that the SAD was going against the coalition rule since it should not have fielded a candidate. A senior BJP leader said, “Whether our candidate is weak or strong, as they claim, they should come and support him as they are our coalition partners”. The SAD has been holding that Mr Dhillon was better placed to win from here.

The BJP leaders asserted that they would ensure that the party candidate contests and wins as well.

They hoped that the SAD would withdraw its candidate in the interest of the coalition. “Ward 66 was with us in all previous elections and when the byelection was necessitated, it would continue to remain with us, which some Akali leaders are refusing to understand”. They claimed it would also turn out to be a test for their coalition partners. 



81 file papers for civic poll
Our Correspondent

Amloh, September 8
Today was the last day to file nomination papers in 13 wards of the Municipal Council Amloh. A total of 81 candidates have filed their papers from September 6 to 8. The five-year term of the council had expired on July 17.

The candidates came in procession along with their supporters.

Out of 13 seats of councillors, four are reserved for women, three for Scheduled Castes, one for backward class and five seats for general category candidates. The seat of president is reserved for the Scheduled Caste category. The seat of president of the outgoing council was reserved for the backward class.

After screening on September 9 and withdrawal of nomination papers on September 10, elections will be held on September 18 at 13 polling stations of the town, asserted Mr Sandeep Hans, SDM-cum-electoral officer, here today. Training will be imparted to the polling staff.

According to Mr Karmjit Singh Bhagrana, former senior vice-president of the Karamchari Dal, Punjab, it is for the first time that the SAD has extended support to Mr Gulzar Singh, Mr Paramjit Singh Rupal, Mrs Kamlesh Mittal and Mr Jarnail Singh.


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