L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Farmers want drain to link pond with Budha Nullah
Kanchan Vasdev
Tribune News Service

Baniewal (Ludhiana), March 31
Claims of the state government of providing an all-round development in the state have proved to be false in the case of residents of this village whose fields usually get waterlogged during the rainy season.

The farmers are fighting a battle of sorts for the past many years for getting the drain connecting the pond with the Budha Nullah constructed. Their representations have gone ignored as the department concerned has not been able to release Rs 5 lakh for its construction.

As if the problems being faced by them were not enough, the Mandi Board is now raising the plinth level of the link road along the pond. The farmers fear that their crops would suffer more as the raised plinth level would not allow even a small amount of water to escape.

Earlier, it was the faulty laying of the road connecting Ranka village with this village that led to the inundation of the fields. Due to raised plinth level and in the absence of any siphon to discharge the pond water, the farmers have been suffering for the past five years.

Now the farmers say raising the plinth level would spell a doom for them. They said they were already reeling under debt as their crop was being damaged every year.

While the work on the road is in progress, the farmers fears of inundation are getting compounded. Thanks to the lackadaisical attitude of the Department of Panchayat and Rural Development, the drain is taking years for taking a final shape.

The villagers say a grant of Rs 2 lakh released by a former MLA for the drain was allegedly embezzled by a former sarpanch. The Panchayat Department had initiated an inquiry in this regard, but no headway has been made so far.

Sources in the department said due to political interference no charges could be framed against the sarpanch. They said the work was suffering due to the interference of the local MLA.



PAU to set up 17th krishi kendra in Jalandhar district
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 31
Punjab Agricultural University (PAU) will set up its 16th Krishi Vigyan Kendra (KVK) at Noormahal in Jalandhar district.

The Vice-Chancellor, Dr K. S. Aulakh, today said about 25 acres for the KVK complex had been given by the Punjab Government for the proposed KVK, which had been formerly approved by the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR). He expressed gratitude for this step of the government and disclosed that efforts were afoot to set up the KVK at Mansa.

The panchayat of Khokhar Khurd village has already passed a resolution to place a chunk of 25 acres for KVK at the disposal of PAU. Dr Aulakh said once the state government completed formalities, Mansa KVK would also be set up.

The PAU's Director of Extension Education, Dr S. S. Gill, said over a period of time KVKs had played a pivotal role in demonstrating and disseminating production-cum-prevention technologies to the farmers, besides opening a window for rural women and youth, who were imparted training in diversifying on farm and home front activities. The latest concept which had been added at the existing KVKs was setting up of 3-kanal demonstration plots for organic kitchen gardens, where fruits, vegetables and pulses were sown.

For the Noormahal KVK, the ICAR has made a token provision of Rs 11 lakh (2005-06). As per norms, the ICAR will give PAU Rs 73 lakh to set up permanent assets like offices, labs, audio-visual aids, computers, vehicles, farm machinery, development and demonstration units.

Besides, money for permanent assets, the ICAR will give Rs 32 lakh annually by way of recurring expenses to cover cost of seven scientists and nine supporting staff.



Doctors observe black day
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, March 31
In response to a call given by the Punjab Civil Medical Services Association (PCMSA) for a statewide protest, doctors, along with paramedical staff observed black day and held a rally in front of the Civil Hospital to denounce the government decision for handing over 1,193 government dispensaries to Zila Parishads and replacing regular doctors with those appointed on contract.

Dr Hardeep Singh, state president of the PCMSA, claimed that doctors and supporting staff of the Health Department, including pharmacists and Class IV employees, wore black badges and organised similar protests at subdivisional level.

Addressing the rally, Dr Hardeep Singh termed the government decision as “anti-doctors” and “anti-employees”. He said the doctors and paramedics were being used as a scapegoat to implement the Panchayati Raj. The government was out to once again implement such policies that had failed in the past as several dispensaries, being run by the Zila Parishads and civic bodies, had to be reverted back to the Health Department after their failure to deliver the desired results.

By such actions, the government had not only shed its responsibility of providing healthcare to the rural population but the medical fraternity and other employees of the Health Department were also being exploited through “hire-and-fire” policy without any benefit to the delivery of health services.

Dr Balwinder Kumar, district general secretary of the association, alleged that a large number of posts of medical professionals, pharmacists and Class IV employees had been abolished and regularly appointed doctors were also made to face mass dislocation as a result of the government policy.

He further said 872 doctors, recruited under the tenure of then PPSC Chairman Ravi Sidhu, were being victimised as they were compelled to serve on entry scale even after seven years of service.

Other speakers at the rally included Mr Amarjit Singh Pandher, convener, Coordination Committee of Paramedical and Health Employees; Mr Boota Singh, Health Department Class IV Union; Mr Jasdev Lalton; Mr Kulbhushan Singla; Mr Balbir Kalia; and Mr Darshan Singh.



Brother, sister allege threat by uncle
Kanchan Vasdev
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 31
Karamjit Kaur (20) and her brother Sandeep Kumar (14) were thrown out of their house by their own uncle, who allegedly wanted to grab their share of property after their father’s death. In order to ensure that they did not put up a fight against him, their mother was allegedly implicated in a false theft case.

Karamjit and Sandeep, both residents of Gill village, levelled these allegations in front of the Deputy Commissioner, Mr Anurag Verma, in his office today.

After listening to their tale of woes, the Deputy Commissioner directed the case to the Senior Superintendent of Police. Stating that they were living under constant fear of their uncle, Karamjit Kaur told that their father had died in 1990 and following his death, their uncle and grandfather allegedly wanted to transfer their share of property in the name of some other relative.

In their written complaint they alleged that the registration of the house in which they used to live had been done in the name of their cousin by their uncle, Ajit Kumar and grandfather Pyare Lal. ‘‘Our house was demolished and we moved into a rented accommodation ’’, she said.

She added that when they had gone to their maternal grandparents’ house, a theft case was registered against their mother allegedly by their uncle who was allegedly helped by a former Sarpanch of the village, Charanjit Singh Channi. She is still an undertrial in the case.

To add to their problems another Sarpanch, Gurcharan Singh, who was helping them, was allegedly murdered by some persons. ‘‘He was trying to work out a compromise between the two parties. And our relatives had also agreed to sit together and find a solution. But then Gurcharan Singh was killed. ’’ she said in her complaint.

In her SOS to the district administration Karamjit said they were being threatened and intimidated by some persons. Asking the Deputy Commissioner to come to their rescue, she added that if anything happened to either of them then responsibility should be fixed on the persons named in the complaint.

‘‘We are too scared to spend nights in our house. We have seen our mother being picked up and fear that we would be subjected to similar treatment,’’ she said.



Courting spirituality through sunshine
Our Correspondent

Swami Suryendu Puri explains the principles of Sidhamrit Surya Kirya Yog in Ludhiana on Friday
Swami Suryendu Puri explains the principles of Sidhamrit Surya Kirya Yog in Ludhiana on Friday. 
— Photo by I.V.

Ludhiana, March 31
‘‘Sunlight is a wonderful energy, the assimilation of which can help humans get over even the most incurable of diseases. It can not only strengthen the human body but can also give self satisfaction as one absorbs this cosmic energy,’’ says Swami Suryendu Puri, a proponent of Sidhamrit Surya Kirya Yog (SSKY).

Experiencing the power of this cosmic energy made this former computer professional in Bangalore to leave the material world and become a yogi to share the benefits of this kirya with thousands of people and free them from ailments—both physical and mental.

He will be organising a Surya Kirya Yog camp from April 1 to 3 at PUDA grounds, Urban Estate, Dugri Road, from 6 am to 7.30 am and from 5 pm to 6.30 pm.

Talking to Ludhiana Tribune today, Swami Suryendu Puri said he was working with a software company in Bangalore. He used to love partying but the question whether he was happy always nagged him.

He was asked by his company to go to the USA for three years. He said, ‘‘I took a break for two months and came home (read Lucknow). I had a lot of free time to think where my life was headed to and whether I was really happy with my life. As luck would have it. I got a chance to attend a camp by discoverer of Sidhamrit Kriya Yoga Swami Budhpuri, my guru. That was the turning point in my life. He was also a graduate from IIT, Delhi, and was teaching when he found that he wanted something more from his life than to just earn and possess material comforts. In 2002 when we were holding a camp in a remote area of Kulu, Guru ji went out and came back excitedly. He told us that as he was going out of his hutment he directly looked at the sun for two minutes and felt flooded with energy. That was the birth of the revolutionary Surya Kriya Yog’’.

Swami Puri said, ‘‘After that we all practised looking at the sun. We researched over it and found out that one hour after sunrise and one hour before sunset if one does this sadhna, the benefits are immense. Sadhna includes chanting of some mantras and some mudras and then sitting with eyes closed and drinking deep the energy of the sun.

‘‘Only a healthy body will have a healthy mind and that healthy mind is the basis of any spiritual development’’ Maharaj ji often says. He further said ‘‘all over the world people are practising this and have got rid of diseases. For detailed information people can visit our website www.shabadsuratsangam.’



Disappointment over lack of gratitude
Our Correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh, March 31
Canada-based philanthropists are disappointed over the cold response of relatives and friends of the persons who had received massive donations for various causes from NRIs over the past few years. They have called upon leaders of social organisations to join hands in felicitating overseas organisations for helping the needy.

Mr Sangeet Ahluwalia, brother of Dr Sanjiv Ahluwalia, a Canada-based philanthropist, said the functionaries of The Helping Hands, an NGO based in Canada, were disappointed over the response received from certain beneficiaries who had received massive donations for various causes recently.

The organisation had recently sent a huge amount for renal transplant operation of Sanjay Kumar, son of Shadi Ram, a daily wager of Patiala. “Though we have made all efforts to help the family and the patient had been operated upon successfully, none of the persons managing the case had bothered to write even a word of thanks to the organisation that had sent the money in response to a story published in The Tribune,” rued Dr Sangeet Ahluwalia. Instead of appreciating the help, the mother of the patient had commented that they could have received enough aid from the government. “Had you not paid us a meagre amount of Rs 1.25 lakh, Ms Preneet Kaur, MP, would have given us much more money,” said the mother of the patient.

While talking to Ludhiana Tribune, Dr Ahluwalia, a functionary of The Helping Hands, said he had managed to send at least Rs 15 lakh to help certain patients, sportspersons and students. In some cases the funds had been arranged by Dr Bharpur Singh through Radio Punjab. In all cases the decision to help the beneficiary had been taken in response to reports published in The Tribune.

Appreciating the role of The Tribune, Dr Ahluwalia said, “Though we do not expect our own praise, the acknowledgement through the esteemed columns of the paper had been instrumental in raising funds from prosperous members of society.” He claimed that nobody except Pawandeep, a local power-lifter, had ever sent a word of thanks to any of the members of The Helping Hands. He urged leaders of various social organisations of the state to help his organisation to identify genuine persons in need of help.



PUDA issues notice for building bylaw violation
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 31
The Punjab Urban Planning and Development Authority (PUDA) has issued notice to a house owner in Punjab House Building Colony in BRS Nagar for allegedly violating the rules and opening a window in the property of his neighbour.

Confirming it today, PUDA officials said they had issued the notice some days ago and action would soon follow against the defaulter. He said the Junior Engineer concerned was on the job to ensure that the building bylaws were not violated at any cost.

PUDA officials said the notice was issued following a complaint by a neighbour who alleged that the house had been demolished and reconstructed without taking prior permission from the authorities concerned.

They said they would ensure that someone’s privacy was not infringed upon.



Seminar on Gurmat Sangeet Heritage
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, March 31
The Dharam Parchar Committee, Shiromani Gurdwara Parbhandak Committee and the Sri Guru Gian Prakash Foundation together held a seminar on "Gurmat Sangeet Heritage: a comparative perspective" here today .

Jathedar Avtar Singh , president of the SGPC, presided over the seminar while Mr Sharanjit Singh Dhillon was the guest of honour. Padma Shri awardee Surinder Singh of "Singh Bandhu" delivered the keynote address.

Jathedar Tarlochan Singh of Keshgarh Sahib, Sukhdev Singh Bhaur, General Secretary, SGPC, and Prof Prithpal Singh Kapoor, former Pro-Vice- Chancellor of Guru Nanak Dev University, Amritsar, also participated in the event.



Mantra to safeguard skin in summer

The summer sun is shining bright and along with this are rising the worries of skin-conscious people. India is a tropical country and receives very strong sunlight and too much of exposure to sun is harmful for skin. Making these observations, Dr Alka Dogra, Professor and Head of the Department of Dermatology at Dayanand Medical College and Hospital, said there were two main types of damaging ultraviolet rays— UVA and UVB. The UVA caused ageing, wrinkling of skin and damage to deeper layers of skin while UVB resulted in sun tanning, burning of skin. In some cases too much exposure to UVB might cause skin cancer.

‘‘Melanin in the skin absorbs ultraviolet radiation and as the quantity of melanin is more in dark-skinned people they are much less sun-sensitive than fair-skinned people. People with fair skin and freckles are more at risk to suffer skin damage due to excessive exposure to sun rays. People in the Indian sub-continent, being brown-skinned are therefore somewhat better off."

Stressing that prevention was better than cure, she advised the people to take adequate measures to guard themselves against the adverse effects of sunlight especially during summer season. Dr Dogra said exposure to sun should be avoided, especially between 10 am to 2 pm when sun rays were the strongest, body should be kept covered, a cap should be worn to protect the face while moving outdoors and sunscreens should be applied to all exposed areas of skin on a regular basis.

She further pointed out that as children were much more sensitive to the ill effects of these rays, they should be properly clad while playing in the sun. And sunscreen should be applied to all exposed areas of the body.

Dr Dogra observed that extended exposure to strong sunlight even for a short while could cause burning of skin. ‘‘The skin becomes red, hot and painful and after a few days the burnt skin may peel off. In such a condition, a cool shower or bath will help. Soothing creams will also help. A mild steroid cream may be advised by a doctor to soothe the inflamed skin. However, a doctor should be consulted if the sunburnt skin does not heal quickly.’’

Similarly, repeated exposure to too much sun over a number of years can cause damage to skin in the form of premature ageing, wrinkling, actinic keratosis, skin cancers etc. Outdoor workers who do not cover their skin are more prone to the problem of sun damage.

To sum it up, just ‘slip’ on some clothes, ‘slap’ on a cap and ‘slop’ on a sunscreen.


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