L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Workers burn CM’s effigy, more than 100 held, released
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 22
Protesting against the alleged ‘high-handedness of the police against workers’ who were protesting outside the Oswal Woollen Mills on March 16, the Centre of Indian Trade Unions (CITU) today burnt Chief Minister Amarinder Singh’s effigy here today. More than 100 workers were also arrested in violation of the District Magistrate’s orders pertaining to Section 144 of the CrPC. The workers were later released.

Hundreds of workers today gathered in the CPM’s office in Harnam Nagar and in Chattar Singh Park to protest against the incident on March 16. However, the police, which was deployed in large numbers to prevent any law and order violation, arrested the workers soon as they came out.

The workers, before getting arrested, burnt the CM’s effigy and raised slogans against the government.

“On March 16, the police lathicharged workers and arrested 44 workers. We want false cases to be withdrawn and arrested workers to be released. Besides, Section 144 should also be withdrawn,” said Mr Jagdish Chand, joint secretary, CITU, Punjab. He also said, “Action be taken against the employers responsible for the incident.”

The union alleged that Oswal Woollen Mills had tuned out over 2,000 workers and they demanded that those workers be taken back. “There is gross violation of labour laws by industry here. We want the government to ensure that workers get justice and do not have to suffer,” said Mr Sukhwinder Singh Sekhon, district secretary, CPM.



CM keeps Dullo in good humour
Vimal Sumbly
Tribune News Service

Samrala (Ludhiana), March 22
The Chief Minister, Capt Amarinder Singh, ensured that the Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee (PPCC) president, Mr Shamsher Singh Dullo, got due attention at a mass marriage function organised here today.

The Chief Minister appeared to keep his PPCC president in good humour and allowed him to have his share of prominence.

Often, during functions, the Chief Minister overshadows others. But today, he delivered a subtle message.

Right from the moment of his landing, when he was received by the PPCC president, the Chief Minister offered him to come along in his (CM's) official car.

Mr Dullo declined citing his disc problem due to which he had customised his private car and said he was not able to sit comfortably in any other car. The CM suggested that they could board Mr Dullo's customised Innova car.

Mr Gurdev Singh Lapran drove the car with Mr Dullo sitting in the front and Capt Amarinder, Mr Lal Singh and Mr Amarjit Singh Tikka taking the seats at the back. All through the function, the Chief Minister ensured that Mr Dullo got due prominence and kept him alongside while posing for photographers.

Even when somebody referred to Mr Dullo's suggestion of preparing progress reports of all ministers and legislators before renominating them, the Chief Minister said it was good suggestion. The CM agreed that performance of everyone needed to be evaluated. 



Harassed by daughter-in-law, couple attempt suicide
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 22
The Model Town police today booked a woman and her father for allegedly driving the aged parents of her husband to attempt suicide late last evening in Dugri here. The aged couple, Hardyal Singh and Amarjit Kaur, took an overdose of insulin in their bid to end their lives.

Hardyal Singh, a cloth merchant who runs a shop in the Bhadaur House AC market here, and his wife have, in a statement to the Model Town police, alleged that their daughter-in-law, Gurpreet Kaur, and her father, Tarunpal Singh, had made their lives miserable for the past three years.

They said their son, Harpreet Singh, was married to the woman in 2002. They alleged that their daughter-in-law and her father started browbeating them and even threatened to get them booked under the Dowry Act.

They also claimed that the woman’s father had started interfering in their daily life. Later, he even got partnership in the cloth business. They also charged their daughter-in-law of trying to oust them of the house and divest them of all their rights on the property.

Model Town SHO Rajesh Kumar said the aged couple had tried to sort out difference with the intervention of some senior citizens and relatives. However, when nothing seemed to work, they took the extreme step.

The couple took injections late last evening. Their son rushed them to Suman Hospital where doctors managed to save their lives.

The SHO said none of the accused had been arrested so far.



Improvement Trust members resign
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 22
Three trustees of the Ludhiana Improvement Trust have sent their resignations to the Local Bodies Ministers after one of the trustees was allegedly told to put in his papers.

Informed sources have revealed to Ludhiana Tribune that a trustee Suba Harbhajan Singh who was considered close to Mr H S Hanspal, former President of the Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee was told to resign . The government reportedly wanted to accommodate a local industrialist in his place.

However the other trustees objected to it and three of those, including Mr Bhupinder Singh Basant, Mr S P S Bindra and Mr Suba Harbhajan Singh have put in their papers. The fourth trustee Ms Jagpal Kaur Khangura has not resigned so far.

Other reason given for the resignation was that the government wanted to re constitute the board. However, one of the trustees has confirmed that the resignations were tendered in protest.



1 killed, 4 hurt in road accident
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 22
One person was killed and four, including a woman, were injured when a Ludhiana-Delhi bus rammed into an auto-rickshaw near Alamgir village today morning.

The deceased was later identified as Major Singh. The injured were: Paramjit Kaur and her husband Jagdish Singh, Kamikar Singh and auto-rickshaw driver Balwinder Kumar. They all were travelling in the auto-rickshaw. The police has booked the bus driver under Section 304 of the IPC.



Woman, parents accused of poisoning husband
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, March 22
Swaranjit Kaur of Mallah has accused her brother’s wife Sukhwant Kaur, her parents Lachhman Singh and Charanjit Kaur, hailing from Amargarh Kaler, of administering poison to her brother.

Her brother, Gurmel Singh, has been admitted to Kalyani Hospital for treatment.

According to her, the three hatched the conspiracy to kill Gurmel and allegedly poisoned him on March 10.

A case has been registered under Sections 307, 328 and 120B, IPC, by the Sidhwanbet police.



Amarinder talks projects, jobs 
Wants showy marriages to go
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 22
The Punjab Chief Minister, Capt Amarinder Singh, today suggested that the concept of mass marriages needed to be encouraged not only among the weaker sections of the society but among the affluent classes as well.

Addressing a mass marriage function organised by the Samaj Chetna Forum, where of 63 marriages were solemnised, the Chief Minister congratulated the newly wedded couples and wished them a prosperous future.

The CM stressed upon the need to promote the concept of mass marriages not only among weaker sections but also among middle and upper classes.

He said the concept would help checking the social evil of dowry and lavish expenditure on marriages.

The Chief Minister presented a ‘shagun’ of Rs 2,100 from his own pocket and one sewing machine to each couple on behalf of the district Red Cross Society.

He also presented cheques of Rs 6,100 to each couple under Shagun Scheme of the government.

Captain Amarinder Singh announced that the required funds for the completion of mandi yard and sewerage project in Samrala would be released shortly.

Earlier, the Chief Minister inaugurated a shed and mandi yard constructed at a cost of Rs 1.75 crore.

He said the state government had embarked upon an ambitious programme to augment the power supply in the state to overcome the shortage of 2300 MW.

Various projects to generate 6000 MW of power had been evisioned, he added.

He mentioned that eminent companies like Reliance, ITC and Bharti Group had already joined hands with the Punjab Government to set up ventures in the agro-processing and cold-chain sector which would give a thrust to agricultural diversification.

The Chief Minister said the government had launched a comprehensive programme named ‘Punjab Nirman Programme’ for urban and rural areas at a cost of Rs 700 crore, under which Rs 100 crore had already been released.

Addressing the function, Mr Shamsher Singh Dullo, president PPCC, called upon the social organisations to create awareness among the people to eradicate social evils, and also to create political awareness among them.

Mr Lal Singh, Rural Development and Power and Irrigation Minister, Mr Amrik Singh Dhillon, MLA, Mr Balbir Singh Rejewal, Secretary BKU, also addressed the function.

Among others who were present on this occasion included Mr Anurag Verma, Deputy Commissioner, Mr Prayag Jain, DIG, Ludhiana Range, Mr Naunihal Singh, SSP, Khanna, Mr Bhupinder Singh Mann, ex- MP and President BKU, Mr Isher Singh, ex Minister, Mr Nahar Singh Gill Mayor, MC, Mr Gurdip Singh Bhani and Mr Amarjit Singh Tikka. 



City Centre project poses problems 
Kanchan Vasdev
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 22
Residents of Shaheed Bhagat Singh (SBS) Nagar here are paying a price for the development of their area. Thanks to the City Centre project which is in progress in the locality.

Not only the roads in their area have been converted into a mini desert by depositing sand, dug out from the basement, but the public parks in G-block of SBS Nagar have been dismantled and being converted either into site offices for officials of Improvement Trust or godowns for storing construction material.

The sand has been dumped in a 1500-2000 square feet plot reserved for a school in the area. It is carried by winds and deposited on roads and even in the houses of residents, who are complaining against the nuisance. The residents of E, H, G and F blocks are bearing the brunt of the situation.

They claim that their children have no place left to play as the parks have been converted into a concrete jungle. They said that they had taken up the matter with officials of Ludhiana Improvement Trust who had expressed their helplessness stating that the parks would be developed later on.

‘‘The sand particles flying in the air have made our lives miserable. People are falling sick, having allergies and irritation of eyes. The authorities do not even cover the trolleys carrying sand which was being spread on the roads. They should have properlu planned before starting such a big project. Now they have been caught napping as they did not realise they would be facing wrath of residents, ’’ said Mr Arvind Sharma, a resident of SBS Nagar.

Residents were surprised to find out construction of some structures inside the park some days ago. They thought it to be an encroacher’s work only to find out that it was the Improvement Trust which was using the park, meant for recreation.

Mr Sharma added that earlier the sand was being dumped in Kabir Nagar. But after protests from residents there the place was changed and now it was being deposited in H-block.

LIT officials claimed that only three parks fell in the City Centre project area and were being used as there was no other place for erecting site offices. They added that the parks would be developed under the project after its completion and these would become better recreational places than any other parks in the city.

The officials also said that the sand was being dumped in open plots as the construction company would be requiring the material after some time. They said the digging work on the basement was near completion and sand would be required for taking up construction. Then it would become difficult to carry the sand to and fro to the site. They had found the vacant plots as perfect place for doing so.



Oppn councillors to move court on MC budget issue
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 22
The SAD-BJP combine Opposition councillors in the local Municipal Corporation today announced taking legal recourse to stall the passing of the MC budget for 2006-07, which was allegedly passed in a controversial manner in the General House last week.

The leaders announced this while staging a two-hour-long demonstration outside the MC office, Mata Rani Chowk, here today.

The leaders, including Mr Parveen Bansal of the BJP and Mr Harbhajan Singh Dang and Mr Simarjit Singh Bains of the Akali Dal, said the budget was passed in an illegal manner.

‘‘There was no discussion on the budget. The Congress councillors were not in majority on the floor of the House, besides there were several other procedural lapses,” said Mr Parveen Bansal.



Rich tributes paid to martyrs
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 22
On the eve of the 75th martyrdom day of Shaheed Bhagat Singh, Rajguru and Sukhdev, activists of the All India Anti-Terrorist Front (AIATF) paid rich tributes to these brave heroes who sacrificed their lives for freedom of their motherland.

A large number of workers sporting saffron turbans marched from various parts of the city to the martyrs' statues at Jagraon flyover and raised slogans of Shaheed Bhagat Singh, Rajguru, Sukhdev amar rahein and Bharat Mata ki jai. State chief of the unit Balwinder Singh Kaka, state secretary general Yogesh Dewan and district president Anil Sharma paid floral tributes on the occasion.

On the occasion, Balwinder Singh administered the oath to front activists that they will fight anti-national forces and not let them succeed in their evil designs of dividing the country on communal, regional or caste basis.

He said that it is our duty to educate younger generations about the sacrifices made by our freedom fighters so that they should understand the importance of this hard earned freedom and also learn how to preserve it.

He said that it is really a matter of great concern that these days youth is getting addicted to drugs, following which they are not only spoiling their lives but also contributing in the crime graph, which is rising drastically.

Mr Dewan and Mr Sharma asserted that to protect the younger generation from slow poison of drugs, we must start a crusade against drug abuse. They also urged government agencies to take stringent measures to stop drug trafficking in order to stop availability of drugs to youth. 



Special counters for IT returns from today
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, March 22
The Income Tax Department here has made special arrangements for Bar members, assessees and public for receipt of tax returns. According to Ashok Juneja, president, and Ajay Paul Singh, general secretary, of the Taxation Bar Association (TBA), the last date for filing of returns for accounting year 2004-05 was March 31, 2006.

In case of failure to file return by the date, a penalty of Rs 5,000 can be imposed and defaulters can be prosecuted. In the wake of expected rush of the assessees to file returns during the last week of this month, the department has decided to set up a separate counter for Bar members and for those filing bulk returns (exceeding 10 in numbers) from March 24. The bulk returns would have to be submitted in a separate folder.

TBA functionaries further said all assessees must write PAN as well as their bank account number on the returns for purpose of refund. Special receipt counters would function on March 24, March 27 to 30 up to 5.00 PM and on March 31 up to 8.00 PM.

Mr Juneja and Singh further said the TBA would hold a seminar on March 24 on Budget-2006. Mr Girish Ahuja, a renowned expert on the subject, will be the main speaker while Mr R.S. Mathoda, Chief Commissioner, Income Tax, would be chief guest on the occasion.



Suvidha camp at Mallowal
Our Correspondent

Amloh, March 22
The Punjab Government under the leadership of Capt Amarinder Singh, Chief Minister, Punjab, is committed to launch various welfare schemes for the people and the Lok Suvidha Camp was part its efforts towards that goal, said Mr Sadhu Singh Dharamsaut, Parliamentary Secretary (Home, Justice and PWD), at such a camp organised at Mallowal village in Shamspur Kanungo circle here today.

Such camps are being organised in the state to provide on-the-spot services to public to eliminate harassment by middlemen, delays and corruption in the delivery of services, added Mr Dharamsaut.

Around 2,000 persons from 49 villages of 11 patvar circles in Amloh tehsil had came to get there problems solved. Twenty counters of various departments were set up for the convenience of the public.

Long queues of people were seen on the health, pensions, transport and revenue counters. Agriculture horticulture and animal husbandry departments had also set up their stalls near the gates. These counters provided literature to create awareness about various diseases of crops and animals.

Mr Sandeep Hans, SDM, and Mr D.S. Rana, DSP, supervised the arrangements. Mr Partap Singh Baini, chairman of the local market committee, Ms Jaspreet Kaur Talwar, Deputy Commissioner, were also present at the camp.



ASI held, released on bail
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, March22
ASI Joga Singh of Jagraon was today arrested on the order of Ms Jitender Walia, Subdivisional Judicial Magistrate, when he appeared in the court. Joga Singh, in spite of the summons issued by this court to appear as witness in a criminal case, was avoiding to appear in the court. So the court issued his arrest warrants. However, when the ASI made his appearance, the court ordered his arrest and later released him on bail.

Shop burgled: Some persons allegedly burgled the shop of Jagminder Singh in the area of Humbran and took cellphones. The police has registered a case. No arrest has been made so far.

Bid to loot vend: Two persons, who came on a scooter at a liquor vend of Cheemna, demanded liquor bottles. But being late hours Umesh Yadav, employee of the vend, refused to open the door. A scooterist fired in the air and later managed to flee. The police has registered a case

Sarpanch assaulted: Ashok Kumar, Satpal and Raj Kumar of Gureh village allegedly hit their jeep into the car of Kuldip Singh, sarpanch of Sherpur Kalan, Jagraon, and also assaulted the sarpanch with iron rod. The police has registered a case. 



Investors confused as Sensex fluctuates
Shveta Pathak
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 22
The investor community remained a confused lot as the BSE Sensex, after hitting the 11,000-mark yesterday, closed a little lower at 10,841 points today. While many investors expected the bullish trend to continue, no less was the number of those who expected a "correction any time".

The Ludhiana Stock Exchange (LSE) buzzed with activity and so did several broking companies after the Sensex crossed 11,000 points yesterday. What made investors happy was the continuation of the bullish trend even after the 10,000-mark. The estimated daily trading in the city, that was around Rs 600-700 crore around among ago, rose to Rs 1,000 crore this month, portraying the widely prevalent bullish sentiment.

However, the fluctuation has caused confusion among investors. "Last month, when the Sensex hit 10,000 points, we had expected correction anytime. However, the rise continued and it touched 11,000. While earlier I thought it would not take longer to cross 13,000 points, I am a little apprehensive now," said Ramesh Kumar, an investor.

To touch the 11,000-mark, the BSE Sensex took only 29 trading sessions, which means a little less than a month's time. The increase from 9,000 to 10,000 points was the fastest as it took only around a fortnight. While dealers attributed the initial trend to heavy buying by Foreign Institutional Investors (FIIs), by local funds, they said the trend could continue on account of factors like a high economic growth and a good Budget. A wide section of analysts, on the other hand, warn people to be careful as the market could undergo a correction.

For investors the situation is tricky. If they decide to sell a stock they lose profit.On the other hand, if they do not sell a stock, it could go down, causing them losses.

To deal with such situation, market experts say it is better to invest in blue chip stocks and in mutual funds, that are relatively low on risk.They also advise investors to spread their investment over a period of at least one-year and diversify their portfolio.

"Investors should remain cautious. It is better to stick to blue chip shares instead of penny stocks. We expect a correction any time now," said Mr H.S. Sidhu, executive director, Ludhiana Stock Exchange (LSE).

Even as investors in the city are an aware lot, experts said they should not get carried away by general market sentiment and take decisions based on their own requirements and a sound analysis.



Biz Clips
Airtel broadband, phone services

Ludhiana: Airtel launched its broadband and telephone services in the city on Tuesday. With this, the company expects a substantial growth in its customer base, said Mr Sunil Bharti Mittal, chairman and group managing director, Bharti Enterprises. The company, that launched the service simultaneously in Chandigarh and Jalandhar, said over 25,000 people have already subscribed to its various facilities like telephone services, leased lines, ISDN, internet, video-conferencing and value-added services. TNS

New LG handsets: Aiming to consolidate its position in the Indian market, LG Electronics on Tuesday introduced two GSM phones here. Both the models, P-7200, S-5200, have been launched by the company to cater to the mid and high-end market. The company said it targets a growth of 300 per cent in the GSM business in 2006. Presently, the company stands on a fifth position in the GSM market. Besides, LG will also increase its dealer network from the existing 11,000 to 20,000 by December this year. 

New Hutch offer: Hutch on Wednesday introduced a ‘Double Talk-time’ offer for its post-paid subscribers. Under the offer, subscribers can avail, at a monthly rental of Rs 300, talk time worth of Rs 600. Mr Arun Kapoor, COO, Hutch, Punjab said, “The offer gives our postpaid subscribers twice the value they have paid for.” 


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