L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Hailstorm causes worry to farmers
Mahesh Sharma

Mandi Ahmedgarh, April 10
Farmers of the area were scared by the rain and hailstorm which lashed the region yesterday. Though no substantial damage to the wheat crop was reported from the area, panic existed among farmers who were seen requesting the owners of combine harvesters and reapers to harvest their crop on priority.

Mr Amar Singh, former sarpanch, Baurhai Kalan village, said the light shower mixed with hailstorm had not caused much harm to the wheat crop. "Fortunately, the hailstorm was not accompanied with lashing rain and reaped crop was saved from being wetted," said Mr Amar Singh. Mr Gurbachan Singh of Ahmedgarh Chhanna village, said the hailstorm had created panic among farmers. "Those who had earlier decided to reap the crop manually changed their minds and began searching for combine harvesters to harvest their crop ," he maintained. The owners of combined harvesters increased their rates by Rs 100 per acre, he claimed.

Mr Bir Singh of Rachhin village said farmers would suffer more loss on account of increased humidity due to the recent precipitation. 



Affiliated schools allege step-motherly treatment
Shivani Bhakoo

Ludhiana, April 10
The Association of Punjab School Education Board (PSEB) Affiliated Schools has condemned the step-motherly treatment meted out to them by the state government. Members of the schools alleged that various restrictions were imposed on them, whereas government and government-aided schools in the state were being run without any conditions.

Mr Rajinder Sharma, president of the association, today said secondary schools were facing a lot of problems as a majority of these schools were unable to get elevation to the senior-secondary level due to lack of land.

He highlighted that this restriction of the land area did not apply to government and government-aided schools of the state. "The move not to elevate schools to the senior-secondary level is nothing but simple discrimination against the affiliated schools, which is unfortunate", said Mr Sharma.

Meanwhile, a state-level meeting of the association was also held here last evening in which delegates from various districts participated. The members from Hoshiarpur, Nawanshahr, Jalandhar, Moga, Ferozepore, Sangrur, Ropar, Bathinda, Mansa etc also expressed concern over the panic created by the Education Department regarding the closing of private schools, including affiliated schools, on this occasion.

The other important issue was raised regarding the special road tax imposed on school buses. The members said this road tax was a great burden on the rural community.

The meeting was attended by Mr I.M.Dutta, Mr Walia, Mr Ravi Nandan Sharma, Mr Kartar Singh, Mr Sonu Rawat, Ms Usha Jain and Mr Harnek Singh.



PCMA plans series of academic programmes
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, April 10
The Punjab Commerce and Management Association (PCMA) will organise a series of academic programmes this year to promote commerce and management education in the region.

Giving details about the activities here on Saturday, Prof Ashwani Bhalla, general secretary of the PCMA, said, “A faculty development programme on Human Resource Management will be organised at the Desh Bhagat Institute of Management and Technology, Mandi Gobindgarh, on May 14 and 15, in which leading HR specialist will train commerce and management faculty of various colleges about the technical aspects of HR issues”.

“The association will also organise two-day national youth festival for commerce students in September. The PCMA 3rd international conference has been scheduled in the month of October, theme of which is entrepreneurship, creativity and employment. Apart from that, the PCMA lecture series will be another major event in every month in which prominent experts will deliver lectures on various issues in different parts of the state”, said Professor Bhalla.

He said the association had launched a membership drive and by the yearend, all commerce and management teachers of the state would be made its members and a directory would be prepared.

Prof Rajesh Marwaha, president of the PCMA, said the city unit would start a discussion forum to make the students aware about the latest happenings.

The newly-elected state executive committee of the PCMA includes: Dr Prem Kumar — president; Dr Subhash Chander — senior vice-president; Dr Vijay Asdhir — vice-president; Prof Ashwania Bhalla — general secretary; Prof Shallini Gupta — finance secretary; Prof V.K. Sareen — joint secretary; Prof Deepak Dhingra — joint secretary (PR).

District presidents of the association include: Prof J.R. Prashar (Ferozepore), Prof Rajesh Marwaha (Ludhiana), Prof Sandeep Vij, (Jalandhar), Dr Rajan (Gurdaspur), Dr Dharminder Singh (Fatehgarh Sahib), Dr B.D. Sharma (Amritsar), Prof Tejinder Singh (Faridkot) and Prof K.K. Uppal (Muktsar).



Stress on role of media in education
Our Correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh, April 10
Various speakers participating in a seminar on ‘‘The Effects of Media on Education’’ organised by Dr Santokh Singh Tiwana Memorial Trust at Officer’s Club, Malerkotla, near here, called upon mediapersons to step up efforts to highlight positive reporting to counter the negative effects of media on education.

Prof Dharam Chand Vatish presided over the seminar and Dr Maghar Singh, Circle Education Officer, was the chief guest.

Dr Kamaljit Singh Tibba, the keynote speaker claimed that the media in general and electronic media in particular, had eclipsed the positive growth of education during the past few decades. ‘‘Though media has both types of effects— positive as well as negative— the students tended to imbibe the negative influences more easily than the constructive one,’’ claimed Dr Tibba.

Supplementing his claims with statistics, Dr Tibba maintained that interest in studies, creativeness, reading habits and standardised research had recorded a steep decline.

Dr Maghar Singh, who was felicitated by the organisers for his achievements in the field of education, held the parents responsible for the present situation.

Prof Dharam Chand Vatish claimed that a majority of parents had been genuinely trying to protect their children from the harmful effects of media, including TV, but without much success.

Karamjit Singh, secretary, Mr Ravinder Singh, president of the PSU, Charanjit Singh, Prof Mohd Hanif, Mr Paramvir Singh Choondh and Sadhu Singh participated in the seminar. 



Right to Information Act discussed
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, April 10
The GGN Institute of Management and Technology organised a lecture on “Right to Information Act” for students of BBA and MBA here today. Dr P.S. Jaswal, Director, Ryat College of Law, was the guest speaker. Justice S.K. Jain (retd), Punjab and Haryana High Court, presided over the seminar.

Mr Jaswal informed the students that the USA was the first country to enforce the information Act in 1966. India enforced the Act last year and it was extended throughout the country, except Jammu and Kashmir.

By implementing the Act, the government promoted transparency and accountability in the administration and ensured effective participation of the people in the administration affairs. Mr Jaswal talked about the application procedure for requesting the information, time limit to get the information and fees to be paid to obtain it.

Justice Jain said every right had a corresponding duty. Therefore, the right to information entitled the individual to be duty bound to use the information for the welfare of society.

The Director of the institute, Mr Kuldip Singh, the coordinator, Mr Gunwant Singh Dua, and the joint secretary, Mr Harmohinder Singh, were present, among others.



Cleanliness drive at Tagore Public School
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, April 10
A cleanliness week organised by the Eco-Club of Tagore Public School to inculcate the habit of cleanliness and emphasise the need to protect the degrading environment was inaugurated here today .

The officiating manager of the school and the honorary secretary, Mr Jaspal Singh, formally inaugurated the week.

The Principal of the school, Ms Amrita Gakhar, in her welcome note, threw light on the need to keep the surroundings of the school clean. She introduced the teachers eco-club followed by the oath-taking ceremony.

Learning Day celebrated: Children of Lovely Lotus Nursery School celebrated 'Welcome to the World of Learning Day' in a novel way here today.

The children were introduced to the world of reading through the medium of wonderful playbooks like pop-up books, puppet books, peek-a-boo books, lift-the-flap books, magic and mirror books, musical books, picture playbooks, match-the-card books, three dimensional books, touch and feel and multi sensorial books.They were shown creative use of paper with the tearing and crumpling activity by making balls out of it.



NCC cadets hold rally to help polio drive
Our Correspondent

Samrala, April 10
A big rally was organised by NCC cadets (senior division and junior division) of Government Senior Secondary School, Ghungrali Sikhan, at Ghungrali Sikhan village and its surrounding areas. The rally was organised under the leadership of the school's Principal Gurmeet Kaur Dhaliwal and NCC officers, Jatinder Kumar and Narinder Pal, in charge of the senior and junior divisions respectively.

An inauguration ceremony was performed by Ms Dhaliwal at Ghungrali Sikhan village. With the cooperation of Mr Manmohan Kumar Puri, Ms Mohinder Kaur , Inspector Bhinder Singh, the NCC cadets helped the health departments at Ghungrali Sikhan, Sangatpura, Bhangalan, Unchi Bondal, Jhamlutti and Dyalpura villages in giving polio drops to children under five years.



Bhardwaj group wins teachers’ poll

Ludhiana, April 10
Prof V.K. Bhardwaj's and Prof Devinder Joshi's group won the teachers' union annual poll for the election of office-bearers, delegates and executive members of the Arya College Teachers' Union.

Professor Joshi was elected president defeating his rival Prof R.P.Sabharwal by six votes. Prof P.S.Bhogal was elected vice-president by defeating Ms Anuradha Dhiman. Professor Bhardwaj was elected secretary and defeated Mr A.K.Malhotra by five votes. Prof R.L.Behl was elected joint-secretary and Professor Lekhi was elected finance secretary. The executive members include Dr P.D.Gupta, Prof A.K.Singla, Ms R.Bali and Ms S.Sood. — OC



Student beating case: hearing adjourned
Rajneesh Lakhanpal

Ludhiana, April 10
The Additional Chief Judicial Magistrate, Mr S.S. Dhaliwal, today adjourned the student assault case, involving O.P. Arora, Principal, Nauria Mall Jain Senior Secondary School, Devinder Kumar and Baldev Kumar, both teachers, and Girdhari Lal, peon, till April 25.

The next date of hearing has been fixed for consideration on the notice to the accused regarding the allegations levelled by a former student of the school, Saurav Kumar, and his parents.

Following the complaint filed by the student and his parents, the court had issued summons under Section 323 and 34 of the IPC and ordered the accused to appear before the court today. But the accused had surrendered before the court on April 5 and were granted bail, as the offence was bailable.

On the day of incident, a case under Sections 323, 341 and 506 of the IPC was registered against the student, his brother, parents and another person at the Division No 5 police station following the complaint of the school authorities. This case is also pending in this court and it had fixed for prosecution evidence on July 5. Charges had already been framed against the student and his family members in that case.

Showing dissatisfaction against the police action, the student and his parents had filed complaint against the school authorities in the court. It was submitted in the complaint that Devinder Kumar, the teacher, caned Saurav on January 19, 2005. The student told the incident to his parents, who went to the school to complain against the teacher.

It was further stated that when the man and the son were standing outside the office of the Principal, Devinder Kumar along with another teacher Baldev Kumar reached there. They asked the parents to leave the school. On refusal, the teacher allegedly beat up the son.

The Principal, who also came there, asked staff to throw them out of the school.



400 patients examined at medical camp
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, April 10
More than 400 patients were examined and free medicines distributed among them at a medical camp organised at Shree Raghunath Hospital here yesterday.
Needy patients were provided free laboratory tests and 10 patients were admitted for eye operations performed by Dr Sherry Gupta.

Mr Rakesh Pandey, Minister of State for Science and Technology, Punjab, while inaugurating the camp, stressed the need for making modern medical treatment affordable and accessible to the people in remote and rural areas. He urged medical professionals to serve the suffering humanity with compassion and dedication.

According to Dr Ritu Gupta, medical superintendent of the hospital, doctors from different specialities conducted medical check up and rendered follow-up advice to patients.

Among other executive members of the hospital managing committee, Mr Arun Goel, president, Mr Prem Gupta, secretary, Mr D.J. Jain and Mr Surinder Gupta, vice-presidents and Mr Chaman Lal and Mr N.D. Goel were present on the occasion.



Personal hygiene must while swimming
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, April 10
'Maintaining a good personal hygiene is the best way to prevent any infection and ensure safety in public swimming pools,' advises Dr Vikas Bhutani, consultant, Internal Medicine at Fortis Hospital, Mohali, in an advisory issued here today.

He says, "During summer, swimming is one of the most popular activities as it is enjoyable and a healthy way to spend leisure . Over the years, the use of modern disinfection systems in pools has improved the quality of water. Despite this, there has been an increase in the number of outbreaks of illness associated with swimming, essentially because of swallowing, breathing or having contact with contaminated water from the pool."

Commenting on the health problems experienced by swimmers, Dr Bhutani said these include skin, ear, respiratory, eye, wound infections, common cold and fungal infection, apart from the most commonly reported illness —These can be caused by germs such as cryptosporidium (crypto), girdia, shigella and e.coli. This particular infection can occur even while swimming in chlorinated pools as crypto is chlorine resistant.

He emphasised that some precautions taken by swimmers can avoid infections and make swimming a healthy pastime like taking a good shower or a thorough wash before entering and after leaving the pool and at the same time swimming in well-maintained, chlorinated and clean pools. Both excess and little amount of chlorine can cause health problems.

Dr Bhutani further asked the swimmers to avoid swallowing pool water to prevent gastrointestinal infections, wear a clean swimming costume, along with eye goggles, ear plugs and a well-fitting swimming cap before entering the pool, remove contact lenses while swimming, avoid entering the pool if suffering from eye flu, skin allergy, common cold, ear infection, open wound or any other contagious illness.

In a word of caution for children, he observed that swimming can pose specific risks for children with current ear infection or previous surgery. Especially, children with ruptured acute otitis media(drainage from ear canal) should not go swimming until their infections are completely healed. Kids with AOM that is not ruptured, should not dive or swim under water. Children with implanted ear tubes ought to use ear plugs or cotton balls, coated in petroleum jelly when swimming to prevent infection.



216 units of blood collected for thalassaemics
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, April 10
In the course of its continuing efforts to lend a helping hand to the underprivileged children suffering from thalassaemia, Dayanand Medical College and Hospital (DMCH) organised a blood donation camp, in association with the Punjab Thalassaemia Welfare Society (PTWS).

A team of doctors and technicians conducted the camp under the supervision of Dr Amarjit Kaur, Professor and Head of the Department of Transfusion Medicine. As many as 216 units of blood were collected during this camp and the donors comprised mainly the parents and relatives of thalassaemic children.

In her address to the blood donors, Dr Amarjit Kaur expressed gratitude for their consistent co-operation and assured the support of the institution towards the cause of thalassaemics. She emphasised that more and more people should come forward to donate blood to save the lives of these children.

Mr S.P. Malik, Honorary Secretary of District Red Cross Society, was the chief guest at the camp. He lauded the role of DMCH for making a remarkable contribution to the noble cause of working for the welfare of thalassaemia patients.

Dr Rajoo Singh Chhina, Medical Superintendent (P), asked the people to come forward enthusiastically to donate blood for the thalassaemic children, as well as for other critically ill persons. Appreciating the efforts of PTWS, Dr Chhina said DMCH was committed to the cause of thalassaemic children and was making efforts to provide quality health care to them. He informed that a special thalassaemia unit was already operational in DMCH where admission, nursing and medical care, and all other investigations were being provided absolutely free of cost.

In an interactive session with the parents, relatives and friends of thalassaemic children, Dr Praveen C. Sobti informed that thalassaemia was the most common inherited blood disorder in the world and Punjab was one of the worst affected states. At present, 3.5 to 5 per cent of Punjabi population had the thalassaemia trait while more than 200 children were registered with the thalassaemia unit of DMCH. She expressed regret that due to the lack of awareness about the disease, many of the patients died or developed complications due to improper management. 


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