L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Vet kills wife, held
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 8
A 55-year-old veterinary doctor allegedly murdered his 52-year-old wife in Bhattian village at about 2.30 am today.

The victim had as many as 10 stab wounds on her face and head. The accused had used an ice-pick to assault the victim. The police said the woman suspected him of infidelity. So the accused wanted to eliminate her.

The Salem Tabri police has booked Dr Surinder Pal Singh under Section 302 of the IPC for murdering his wife Gurbax Kaur. He has been arrested.

According to police sources, the case has been registered on the complaint of Mr Satpal Singh, brother of the deceased woman.

The couple had only one daughter. She was married several years ago. The accused doctor enjoyed a good professional reputation as a veterinary doctor. They had neither any property dispute nor enmity with anyone.

He had claimed to the police that his sister had shared her tension over her husband's illicit relationship. He also claimed to the police that his sister had told her that if she died an unnatural death, her husband should be held responsible.

Mr Satpal Singh further states in his statement that last night he had come to the village to attend a Jagrata function. He got a call from someone that his sister and her husband were quarrelling with each other.

He rushed to the house which was not far away. He was shocked to see his sister lying on the floor with the doctor sitting close to her head. He had an ice pick in his hand.

The police said the FIR has been registered as per the statement of the deceased's brother. Further investigation was on.



Exam centre staff indicted
Our Correspondent

Ahmedgarh, April 8
The civil administration has indicted examination supervising staff of M G M N Senior Secondary School in the infamous student’s suicide case and has recommended departmental action against the Superintendent, Deputy Superintendent and Invigilator on duty at the centre on the day of the incident.

In her inquiry report submitted to the Deputy Commissioner, Sangrur, the SDM, Dr Indu, has held that the ‘‘supervising staff violated the rules and created such an environment in the examination hall which caused fear psychosis among the candidates.’’

The inquiry report further stated that while pindrop silence was required in the examination hall, mobiles phones of certain staff members were ringing constantly and an altercation over the issue of joining duty by a couple had caused a lot of disturbance to the candidates.

The students could not concentrate as they were repeatedly frisked by the staff on duty, said the report. The SDM added, ‘‘Teachers are more than parents. But they created so much fuss over a trivial issue that students could not perform well and one of the students even committed suicide as he failed to do well in the examination.’’

Dr Indu had earlier recommended the transfer of staff at the centre as she had found that disharmony among the staff members had driven Sarabjit Singh, a youth from Ghungrana village, to commit suicide.

Some students, their parents and office-bearers of some organisations had complained to Dr Indu that disharmony among staff had caused inconvenience to the students appearing for chemistry paper of Class 12.

Kewal Singh, father of the deceased, had also told the police that Sarabjit Singh had hanged himself to death after returning from the school in the evening as he had not fared well in the chemistry paper.

After investigations Dr Indu observed that an altercation between Baltej Singh Deputy Superintendent, his wife Ms Inderjit Kaur, Invigilator and Manjit Singh, Superintendent, had caused inconvenience to a majority of students appearing in the examination.

‘‘Mr Manjit Singh, who was the Superintendent, should have confirmed the rule about joining of spouse in the same centre before the start of the examination and should have settled the issue outside the centre," observed Dr Indu.

Mr Baltej Singh and his wife Ms Inderjit Kaur, however, denied the charges levelled against them and maintained that they were being framed as they had been working to curb the menace of copying. 



PAU has no funds for research
K.S. Chawla

Ludhiana, April 8
The Punjab Agricultural University has stopped filling vacant posts. It has merged eight departments, pooled vehicles and made efforts to raise its own sources of income. But it's not out of financial crisis.

The university receives all funds through the departments of agriculture and veterinary. The Punjab Government has been providing Rs 90 crore per year to the university for the past three years. Of this, Rs 80 crore is for agriculture and Rs 10 crore for the veterinary scheme.

The amount is just enough to meet the annual salary bill of over Rs 90 crore. The university has to spend between Rs 5 crore and Rs 7 crore per year over and above the state grant of Rs 90 crore.

The university authorities had submitted a plan for raising a corpus fund of Rs 100 crore for the university to enable it to earn interest and undertake research projects. After great persuasion, the state government agreed to provide Rs 20 crore to the university. Before the end of the financial year 2005- 2006, the state Planning Board sanctioned Rs 10 crore to the university for undertaking new research projects.

But this amount has now gone to the state Agriculture Department which will release the amount only after setting up a committee on the use of funds.

The Central Budget for the year 2006-2007 has a provision of Rs 100 crore for the university for giving a push to the Green Revolution. But the university authorities have not received any intimation how this amount has to be utilised.

The university authorities have already submitted schemes to the state and the central governments for the utilisation of the funds.

The board of management of the Punjab Agricultural University has passed budget estimates for the year 2006-2007 to the tune of Rs 204.66 crore. The ICAR will contribute Rs 26.10 crore while the state government will contribute Rs 163.77 crore.

The PAU which has introduced the pension scheme for its employee is also worried over the depletion of pension fund at Rs 10 to 12 crore per year. 



BKU factions unite on wheat import issue
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, April 8
All three factions of the Bhartiya Kisan Union (BKU), headed by Mr Ajmer Singh Lakhowal, Mr Balbir Singh Rajewal and Mr Pishora Singh Sidhupur, have decided to sink their differences and come together on a single platform to launch protest against the government’s decision to import 20 lakh tonnes of wheat, that too at a time when fresh crop had already started arriving in mandies.

Terming the government move as anti-farmers, the leaders today threatened to boycott the grain markets and procurement operations if the government went ahead with the decision. They said a joint meeting of all three factions of the BKU would be convened here on April 10 to chalk out a strategy for proposed agitation.

The leaders said the government had stabbed the wheat producers in the back by going for import of wheat at this particular time. “Now that the wheat crop has started arriving in the mandies, the decision to import wheat has created a sense of confusion and insecurity among the farmers”.

The BKU leaders reiterated the demand of linking support prices of farm produce with wholesale price index of 1966-67. Calculated on this basis, the minimum support price of wheat should be fixed at Rs 950 per quintal, paddy Rs 765 per quintal, superfine variety Rs 865 per quintal, cotton Rs 3,750 per quintal, oil seed Rs 3,300 per quintal and sugarcane Rs 165 per quintal.



Liquor pilferage bares chinks in IAF station
Our Correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh, April 8
The Sudhar police has cautioned the authorities at the Air Force Station, Halwara, against the probable lapses in security arrangements after three persons, including two civilian employees, were arrested at Officers’ Mess for allegedly stealing liquor meant for the use of defence personnel.

According to Mr Shawinder Singh Dhillon, SHO, Sudhar, Mukesh Kumar, Binder Pal Singh, mess employees and Rajesh, alias Kakoo, a civilian, had been arrested for allegedly pilfering liquor meant for the use of Air Force officers at the Officers’ Mess in the station.

The three had been nabbed by the police in connection with an FIR registered on the statement of R.K Yadav, in-charge of security at the station. 



Residents, industry bear brunt of power cuts
Shveta Pathak
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 8
Summers might take some time to come to full swing, but power cuts stretching up to seven hours are giving residents a tough time. Disappointed with the government for not being able to improve the power situation, residents and industry fear that the situation could worsen in the coming months.

"We have been facing cuts for up to seven hours quite frequently. If the situation is so bad when summers have just begun, we fear the coming days would provide no relief. The government has miserably failed in improving the power situation and we feel quite helpless," said Mr Jaswinder Singh, a resident in Civil Lines.

A nine-hour cut was imposed on areas, including Sunder Nagar, Nirankari Colony, Punjabi Bagh, Mahaveer Jain colony, Mangat Colony, Basti Jodhwal, Kirpal Nagar, Daulat Colony, Kuldip Nagar, Basti Mani Singh and Mahavir Jain Colony today.

Dhuri Line, Guru Nanak Colony, Ishar Nagar, Lohara Gurbachan Colony, Sunder Nagar, and New Janta Nagar suffered a cut from 9 am to 4 pm. The situation was no better in Model Town, Vishwakarma Town, Model House etc where a seven-hour cut was imposed.

Tomorrow, areas of Bhogal, Kabir Nagar Janta Nagar, Joshi Nagar, Ranjodh Park, Rajesh Nagar, Prem Nagar etc will face power cuts for five to six hours.

Industry too is crying hoarse and suffering as it is not able to meet its orders. "Power cuts do not end, be it winters or summers. The duration has increased these days which is making it difficult for us to meet our orders. We are forced to incur fixed costs, labour costs even when there is no production. Payments too are delayed and exporters do not want to place orders with us. Poor power situation has rendered industry here uncompetitive and it is high time the government took it seriously," rued Mr Varinder Kapoor, general secretary, United Cycle and Parts Manufacturers Association.

While the situation is being attributed to a widening demand-supply gap, the problem would only get severe in coming days as people would start using coolers and air conditioners.

What bleaks any hopes for improvement is the fact that Punjab State Electricity Board (PSEB) officials too have ruled out the possibility of no power cuts. Though member distribution, PSEB, Mr B.K. Bindal, who was recently in the city, said cuts in peak time would vary between one and two hours, the claims hold no good as cuts of a much longer duration have already begun.

As per estimates, daily demand during peak season is expected to rise to 1,900 lakh units. Even after purchasing power from outside, a shortage of 100-200 lakh units is expected.



Timely surgery saves 82-yr-old woman’s arm
Kuldip Bhatia

Ludhiana, April 8
Ms Sarla Jain, an 82-year-old woman, suffered a fall at home. She consulted Dr A.O. Afzal, Senior Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon and former head of Orthopaedics at Christian Medical College and Hospital. On examination, he found that she had sustained a fracture of her left arm.

What was alarming was that she had absence of her pulse as the main artery of the arm had got damaged in the fracture. The woman was immediately rushed to Ludhiana Mediciti Hospital on Ferozpore Road where Dr Harinder Singh Bedi realised that with every passing minute, the chances of the saving the arm were diminishing.

An angiogram was done immediately by Dr R. Aggarwal, which confirmed the site of injury. Within half an hour of reaching the hospital, she was taken for a major combined vascular and orthopaedic surgery. The risk was high because of the advanced age of the patient and the skills of the team were taxed to their limit in this case.

During surgery, the artery of the arm was found to be totally damaged. It had to be replaced with a long piece of imported tube graft. The delicate nerves, which control the movement and sensations of the hand, were carefully safeguarded. Dr Afzal performed the fixation of the fracture using a nail.

Post-operatively, Ms Jain made a complete and fast recovery. Dr B.S. Sengar, Dr C.S. Sohal, Dr B.S. Sekhon and Dr Gaurav Sachdeva were the other members of the team.

Both Dr Bedi and Dr Afzal stressed the importance of a combined multi-speciality approach to such cases. In cases of vascular trauma, time is of the essence as any delay in restoring blood flow, can lead to loss of a limb as the muscles and nerves die within a few hours due to lack of blood.



Beant Singh complex opened
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 8
Education Minister Harnam Das Johar inaugurated the Shaheed Beant Singh Memorial Cultural Complex at Doraha, 20 kms from here, today.

On the recommendation of Punjab government, Ludhiana city had been adopted under the Jawaharlal Nehru Urban Renewal Programme (JNURP).A sum of Rs 1300 crore was being spent to strengthen its infrastructure, housing and local transport system .

Mr. Johar announced that Govt. Senior Secondary School in Doraha would be named as Shaheed Beant Singh Memorial Senior Secondary School He announced a grant of Rs 2 lakh for the complex.

Tej Parkash Singh, a former Minister, said that the government had given liberal funds for the development of Payal constituency .He had disbursed grant cheques of Rs 1 crore under the Punjab Nirman Programme And cheques for Rs 3 core would be disbursed shortly.

Mr. Johar presented cheques for Rs 20 lakh to the Municipal Committee of Doraha and Rs 14 lakh to the Municipal Committee, Payal.

Later , at a function organised by the Sarb Sanjhi Welfare Society at Abdulapur Basti, Mr. Johar distributed 250 bags of wheat floor among the poor families. 



Devotees throng Ayappa temple
Annual idol installation ceremony
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, April 8
Hundreds of devotees attended the first day of the two-day annual idol installation celebrations organised by Shri Ayappa Seva Sangam, Focal Point, here today. The celebrations included various pujas and havans such as ‘‘Laksharchana’’ and ‘‘Sahasra Kalasabhishem’’.

Mr N.V.Rajan, Chairman, Shri Ayappa Seva Sangam, while talking to the Ludhiana Tribune said ‘‘with the divine grace of Lord Ayappa and with the sincere efforts of the devotees and well-wishers, the long cherished dream of establishing a temple complex in Ludhiana for Lord Ayappa had been fulfilled with ‘updevtas’ like Lord Ganesha, Devi Ma, Lord Shiva, Lord Vishnu deities, Nagas and Navgraha (nine constellations).

‘‘The installation ceremony of idols of all deities was performed by Brahamshree Kandararu Rajeevaru, chief Tantri of Sabarimala temple, Kerala, in April 1998. Today, this temple (Ludhiana) has become a centre of pilgrimage and thousands of devotees from all parts of Punjab gather here to have a glimpse of Lord Ayappa on festive occasions’’, said Mr Rajan.

Mr Vikraman Pillai, General Secretary of the sangam, said there were many temples dedicated to Lord Ayappa in Kerala, the most famous being the one at Sabari Hills. The sphere of influence of Lord Ayappa has spread beyond Kerala and several new Ayappa shrines have been established in various parts of the country, he added.

‘‘This year on the auspicious occasion of ‘‘pratishtha dina mahotsavam’’ (annual installation day celebrations), ‘‘Sahasra Kalasabhishekam’’ and ‘‘Laksharchana Mahayanjam’’ pujas have been performed by Brahmshree Kandararu Rajeevaru himself’’, said Mr Pillai.

As many as 1000 copper kalasams (vessels), filled with precious metals and holy water from sea, rivers and panchdravyas were used in the puja. It is believed that participation in ‘‘Sahasra Kalasabhishem’’ was the holiest thing to happen in the life of a human being. This puja was performed for the first time in northern India. The other puja—Laksharchana Mahayanjam— was performed for the prosperity of society as a whole and also to accord spiritual divinity to the sanctum sanctorum of the temple. Divine mantras of Lord Ayappa were chanted 100,000 times to pray for the well-being of devotees on this occasion.



A dream come true for Ramoowalia
Vimal Sumbly
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 8
For Mr Balwant Singh Ramoowalia, leader of the Lok Bhalai Party, it is a dream come true.

With representatives of six political parties, other than the Congress, the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), attending his rally, he says it is the beginning of a third front in Punjab.

Mr Ramoowalia has been harping on a third front for a long time, maintaining that people of the state are fed up with the Congress and the SAD-BJP combine.

He has been a votary for a third front, which will exclude the political parties which have ruled the state.

The rally at Mullanpur Dakha on Thursday was a success and it was mainly due to the efforts of Mr Ramoowalia that such a large turnout was moblised for the rally.

He holds considerable influence in the area, having cut into traditional Akali support base among rural peasantry.

He hopes that the good turnout will prompt other reluctant parties to 
join it.

The success of the rally is likely to boost the morale of votaries for a third front like Mr Ramoowalia, Mr Prem Singh Chandumajra and Mr Jaswant Singh Mann.

In certain quarters, it is believed that a third front has the patronage of the state government as it can weaken the prospects of the SAD-BJP combine.

Mr Ramoowalia has been unequivocal and unambiguous in his criticism of the government as well.

At the rally yesterday, all speakers, including those from Left parties, were critical of the state government, charging it with all-round failure.

They pointed out that the industry had been facing difficult times and there was widespread unemployment.

They said prices had touched an all-time high and farmers had been committing suicide.

Nobody in political circles is prepared to dismiss Mr Ramoowalia’s third front talk as mere rhetoric.

He has been trying to bring all splinter non-Congress and non-SAD-BJP forces together under one platform.



Pensioners’ demand
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, April 8
The annual general meeting of the Northern Railway Pensioners Welfare Association was held here recently. Mr Sher Singh, president of the association, presided over the meeting and Mr H.R. Dhand, Chairman, Bar Council of High Court, inaugurated the meeting. Dr Sham Sunder was the guest of honour while Mr K.L. Chitkara read out the annual report of the association, citing its various activities.

On this occasion, needy students of Government Higher Secondary School, Loco Shed, were given monetary aid of Rs 300 each. Few golden age pensioners, who had crossed 75 years of age, were honoured by the association.

Mr Sher Singh, president, demanded the appointment of the sixth Pay Commission at the earliest. He also asked for an increase of Rs 300 per month in medical allowance.

Mr Singh demanded rent free land phones and concession in bus fare for senior citizens and pensioners. Advocate H.R. Dhanda assured a concession in fee to pensioners for legal guidance.



Community police service for residents
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, April 8
A meeting under the presidentship of DSP Gurjit Singh Rommana was today held as per the instructions of SSP R.K. Jaiswal for providing the services of community police officer for the safety of the local residents.

Mr Vijay Jhanji, president, Arhtya Association, Vaid Naseeb Chand, member Grievance Committee, Mr Manjit Singh Dhillon were among others present present on the occasion. Mr Jagraj Singh Sandhu, coordinator, CPO, also participated in the meeting and highlighted the success of this scheme.



Woman booked for fraud
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, April 8
The police has booked Rabinder Kaur, wife of Satinder Singh of Mohi, allegedly for obtaining service in Ajitsar School on the basis of fabricated B.Ed. degree and cheating the school management.

Mr Charanjit Singh, president, Managing Committee, had complaint to the police, which after inquiry found the degree fabricated. A case under Sections 420,465, 467, 468 and 471 of the IPC has been registered.

Couple booked

Balbir Kaur and her husband Balwinder Singh of Amargarh Kaler allegedly cheating Sadhu Singh of Dangian of Rs 2,81,250 on the pretext of selling him their land. The couple did not execute the sale deed nor refunded the amount. The local police has registered a case under Section 420 of the IPC.

Buffaloes stolen

The Dehlon police has registered a case under Section 379 of the IPC on the complaint of Pardeep Singh of Gujjarwal against Varinder Singh, alias Soni, of Gujjarwal and an unidentified person for stealing two buffaloes.

Transformer stolen

A 63 KVA transformer valuing Rs 40,380 was allegedly stolen from Bhanaur. The SDO of the PSEB, Dakha, has lodged complaint with the police. A case has been registered under Section 379 of the IPC.

One held

Jasmel Singh, alias Nikka, of Swaddi Kalan, was arrested by the Sidhwan Bet police for allegedly possesing 150 gm of charas. A case under the NDPS Act has been registered.



Youth booked
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 8
The Salem Tabri police has booked a youth for allegedly filming a girl in compromising position after promising to marry her.

The youth, Raman Kumar, was arrested after the police recovered some evidence against him. The girl had claimed that the youth lured her into an affair first and promised to marry her.

However, he allegedly filmed her and circulated the clip through MMS sent to several persons.


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