L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S

Immigration racket: one accused held
Main accused withdraws money collected from victims
Kanchan Vasdev
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 10
Three months after six officials of an immigration company vanished after duping 130 Punjab youths of crores of rupees, the Kotwali police has managed to arrest the manager of the company even as the main accused, Tony D’ Suza, is learnt to have withdrawn Rs 1.25 crore from a bank in Mumbai where the demand drafts of the youths were deposited.

Informed sources revealed to Ludhiana Tribune that the bank account of the company, Kenya Exports Limited, in Mumbai now has only Rs 385 after D’ Suza had withdrawn money in bulk just a day before he was booked by the police in Ludhiana in April this year.

The local office of the company in AC Market, Bhadaur House here, was closed much to the ire of the duped youths on April 2. Informed police sources said ASI Surinderjit Singh Cheema had during his investigation in Mumbai, said Tony D’Suza had cheated not only youths in Punjab but had looted several others all over the country. He had multiple identities which he used in his new area of operation.

DSP Jatinder Khaira told Ludhiana Tribune that with the arrest of the company Manager, Rohit Verma, he was hopeful of nabbing the other five accused also. Rohit was caught from Ludhiana railway station today morning.

The Kotwali police had, besides Rohit, booked the Director, Tony D’ Suza, , employees Arjun, Shashi Sharma and Chandni and another employee for fleecing the youths. The company had its offices in AC Market, besides another two at Jalandhar and Mumbai. The company had allegedly taken Rs 1 lakh to Rs 1.30 lakh from each of the duped 130 youths.

The youths were lured on the pretext of providing them jobs of truck driver, carpenter, petrol pump staff besides other employment avenues in Kenya, Singapore, Qatar and adjoining countries. The youths were not given any jobs or tickets to go abroad. They made several rounds of the company head office in Ludhiana before exposing the cheating yesterday.

Meanwhile, Mr Balwant Singh Ramoowalia, president, Lok Bhalai Party, and Mr Avtar Singh Mullanpuri, acting president, who had exposed the fraud, said the travel agents were openly luring the youths through advertisements in the newspapers but the state government was helpless in checking their growth.

They urged the media to publish advertisements only with photographs of travel agents so that they could be easily brought to book later.

The families of 130 youths, who were duped, had arranged money by either pawning jewellery or mortgaging their small land holdings after taking loan on huge interest. 



Transporters livid over fuel price hike
To join protest outside Parliament on July 26
Shveta Pathak
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 10
Truckers, tempo and mini-bus operators today blocked the traffic on Sherpur road for over-an-hour to protest against the hike in diesel and petrol prices.
Demanding an immediate withdrawal of the hike, which they said was ruining their industry and badly affecting the common man, they threatened to go on an indefinite strike if the government did not act.

“It is not only the hike which hits consumers. Over 37 per cent of taxes and duties in case of diesel and 57 per cent of such taxes on petroleum make the hike much more than what the government announces. We want the hike to be withdrawn,” said the chairman of the Punjab State Goods Transporters Association, Mr Charan Singh Lohara.

Today’s protest was supported by the Ludhiana Goods Transport Association, Mini-Bus Operators Association, All Punjab Tempo and Mini-Trucks Union and various other transporters unions.

Transporters said as a result of the hike their business had been badly hit.

“We are not able to increase freights in proportion to the hike in fuel rates, which has crippled our industry. Before effecting such decisions, the government must consult industry,” said Mr J.S. Grewal, president of Mini-Bus Operators Association.

Transporters also demanded that the duties and taxes be imposed on quantity and not on per litre rate of petrol and diesel.

“Imposition of these taxes on price result in a multiple increase. Taxes, thus, should be based on quantity and not price,” Mr Lohara added.

Condemning the government, transporters said on one hand it was not increasing the price of kerosene on the grounds that it was used by economically weaker section, on the other, it was making no efforts to ensure that kerosene oil reached the sections of society which needed it.

“Besides, there are no quality controls. It is common for petrol pump owners to supply poor quality fuel and also trick consumers by filling lesser quantity. The government must ensure that consumers are not being fooled,” they said.

Mr Lohara said transporters from Punjab would participate in a protest rally on July 26 outside the Parliament.

“If even after that rally the government does not withdraw hike, we would go on an indefinite strike.”

Among those present at the rally were Mr Kirpal Singh Sandhu, president of All-Punjab Tempo and Mini Trucks Union, Mr Charanjit Singh Gill from Mini-Bus Operators Association, Mr Diljang Singh and Mr Subhash Gupta from the Ludhiana Goods Transporters Association and Mr Sarabjit Singh from the Punjab State Goods transport Association.



Youth murdered due to tiff over octroi
Mahesh Sharma

Mandi Ahmedgarh, July10
A fight over octroi fee allegedly led to the murder of an only son of a family of nearby Payal town, by at least six persons last night. The police has registered an FIR under Sections 302, 120 B, 148 and 149 of IPC against the accused but no arrest has been yet made.

In a complaint lodged at Payal police station Karamjit Singh, a resident of ward number 9 of Payal, alleged that Dinesh Kumar, alias Babboo, Surinder Kumar alias Billa, Amandeep Singh alias Shelly, Jaswant Rai alias Ghulla, Sukhwinder Kumar alias Shoki and Harpreet Singh alias Happy, had killed his son Amrinder Singh Gandhi (20) after abducting him from his home last night.

Karamjit Singh said the accused had murdered Amrinder Singh at Pippal Wala Chowk immediately after they took him from his house at around 10.30 pm last night. “It was around 10.30 door bell of my house rung and Amrinder went to open the door. When I followed him I saw the accused talking to my son, who later went along with them. Hardly had I returned to my room when I heard a noise. By the time I reached Pippal Wala Chowk my son was laying in pool of blood,” Karamjit told to the police. He said the accused fled from the scene on seeing him coming.

Amrinder, who had received sharp-edged weapon injuries on the back, breathed his last on the way to a private hospital.

Referring to information received from his dying son Karamjit Singh told the police that his son been attacked with a sharp-edged weapon on the back. Though post-mortem report was yet to arrive, the doctors suspected that the weapon had pierced vital organs, including heart of the deceased.

Amrinder was the only son of his parent and was unmarried. Preliminary investigations revealed that the deceased had had a tiff with Jaswinder and Sukhwinder over issue of payment of octroi earlier during the day.

Mr Kuldip Singh, DSP, Payal declined to comment on the progress of investigations but maintained that Sarabjit Singh SHO, Payal, had sent special teams to nab the accused. 



Punjab heading for white gold revolution
K.S. Chawla

Ludhiana, July10
Punjab is heading for a white gold revolution as the cotton crop is in a very good condition so far. The area under cotton cultivation has also increased thanks to the introduction of Bt cotton.

Dr GS Chahal, a senior cotton breeder and Dean, College of Agriculture of Punjab Agricultural University, disclosed today that the cotton crop was in a very good condition in Punjab and the current month was very crucial for the same. The weather conditions had been favourable for sowing of cotton this year. If the monsoon remains normal, there will be no cause for worry for cotton growers, he said.

Textile industrialists of the state are also happy with the present condition of the cotton crop and they are confident that Punjab would achieve its goal of becoming the leader in cotton production once again.

The area under cotton cultivation in Punjab has risen minimum by 10 per cent. The area under cotton this year is estimated at 6.20 lakh hectares against 5.58 lakh hectares last year.

However, the area under cotton in Haryana and Rajasthan has fallen because of water shortage. Ganganagar circle of Rajasthan had area under cotton to the tune of 3.20 lakh hectares last year. It was likely to fall to 2.60 lakh hectares this year.

According to Mr D L Sharma, Executive Director of Vardhaman Group, the bulk of area had been sown under Bt cotton this year in Punjab and Haryana. Farmers also made purchase of Bt cotton at higher rates.

Mr Sharma estimated that cotton production in the northern circle comprising Punjab, Haryana and Rajasthan was likely to touch the level of last year despite fall in area in Haryana and Rajasthan. Some of the farmers allegedly also purchased spurious Bt cotton at higher prices, i.e. at Rs 900 to Rs 1000 per packet. The Bt company which was authorised to sell the genuine seed sold a packet of 450 grams for Rs 1250.

According to Mr Sharma, the overall cotton production in the country was expected to touch 244 lakh bales this year against 243 lakh bales last year. The sowing of cotton in Gujarat, Maharashtra and Madhya Pradesh had been good this year. The recent rains in Maharashtra might cause some damage to the crop.

Mr Sharma revealed that India exported 35 lakh bales of cotton to China, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Indonesia, Thailand, Taiwan and Turkey. India imported four lakh bales of cotton. The international prices of cotton were also stable this year.

The export of cotton garments has also picked up despite stiff competition from China after the phasing out of the quota regime. India had exported garments worth $ 8.2 billion and the total export of text and clothing was worth $ 15 billion against China's $ 117 billion.



ETO charged with attempt to rape niece
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 10
The Ludhiana police has arrested an Excise and Taxation Officer for allegedly trying to rape his 13-year-old niece by luring her to buy garments from a factory in the city.

ETO Chamkaur Singh was booked under Sections 376/511/ 506 IPC for allegedly trying to rape and threatening the victim of dire consequences if she told any one about it.

He was arrested by division number-II police and produced before a district magistrate. He was remanded in two days police custody. 



Badal assures succour to industrialists
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 10
The Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) president, Mr Parkash Singh Badal, assured industrialists relief from their existing problems if his party came to power. Mr Badal, who visited the Chamber of Industrial and Commercial Undertakings (CICU) general-secretary, Mr Avtar Singh, yesterday to express condolence on the death of Mr Singh’s father Swaran Singh, met various industry leaders.

He said if his party came to power, it would deal with industry’s problems on a priority basis and would not let it suffer.

He interacted with the CICU president, Mr Inderjit Singh Pardhan, the chairman of Janata Nagar Small Scale Manufacturers Association, Mr Charanjit Singh Vishwakarma, the president of Auto Parts Manufacturers Association of India, Mr Gurpargat Singh Kahlon, vice-president of the same association, Mr Charan Singh Kohli, and various other industrialists.

He said the industry in the state was passing through a tough time and the present crisis was due to the “wrong policies of the ruling Congress”.

The SAD president assured industry leaders that his party would frame policies related to industry only after due consultations with industry representatives.



Panchayats asked to unite against social evils
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, July 10
A seminar on drug abuse awareness was jointly organised by the Social Security Department, Child Development Project Officer D.N. Kotnis, the Acupuncture Hospital and panchayats of Mangat Block at Boothgarh village here today. Mr Priyank Bharati, ADC, Ludhiana, was the chief guest while Mr Mewa Singh Chauhan, Chairman, Khadi Board, Punjab, presided over the seminar.

Before the seminar started, a rally was organised by the students of different schools of the nearby villages and an exhibition on the ill-effects of drugs was held by the Health Department.

Mr Bharati asked the panchayats to unite with different organisations in eradicating social evils from society. Mr Mewa Singh Chauhan said women folk could play a vital role in eradicating the menace of drugs amongst the rural youth.

Dr Inderjit Singh of Kotnis Hospital said the Administration, the Health Department and NGOs should work together as a team to advise the rural youth against the use of drugs.

Ms Neeta Gupta, CDPO, said the Punjab Government would organise 10 such seminars in each block to spread awareness among youth on drug abuse.

Ms Nachatar Kaur, Sarpanch of Boothgarh village, presented the guests with mementos.



Centenary birthday celebration!
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 10
The Badwal family of Ludhiana today celebrated the 100th birthday of one of their elders here. Four generations of the family of Mr Lal Singh Badwal, a former Station Master, came together in the city today from various parts of the country and abroad. A beaming Lal Singh cut his birthday cake as he announced his entry into the second century of his life.

‘’We are proud of our father and want him to live for another hundred years, ‘’ said his son Tirlok Singh, who had flown all the way from Texas, USA, to celebrate the birth centenary of his father.

Missing his wife on this very special day of his life, Mr Lal Singh said that she had died five years ago. ‘’Had she been alive, she would have been very happy today. Even though I am elated at the celebrations I am feeling the void created by my wife’’s death,’’ said Mr Lal Singh, acknowledging the love and affection showered on him by his children, grandchildren and great grandchildren.

‘’They have really made me feel like the most special person on the planet. Otherwise who cares for the elderly men in today’s fast world? Have you ever heard anybody celebrating an old man’s birthday? They have actually skipped their work to attend the function today, ‘’ said the centenarian.

Flanked by three sons, a daughter, their spouses, eight grandchildren and 11 great grandchildren, Lal Singh thanked the guests for gracing the occasion even as he turned nostalgic and said that the younger generations would never be able to enjoy life as his generation did.

‘’We had to struggle a lot throughout but the simplicity of life had its own charm. The modernisation had actually made the life complex for our children, ‘’ he said while going down the memory lane and stating that they did not have any material luxuries but they had the contentment to feel on the top of the world.

Spending the twilight of his life with his younger son’s family at Phagwara, Lal Singh went to UK and USA to stay with his elder son some years ago. But his roots pulled him back. He could not adjust in the foreign lands and returned back home.

He said right kind of food, sleeping habits and happy disposition had helped him keeping good health throughout his life. Despite the fact he has turned hundred today he has led a disease-free life, he added.



BKU dharna against power shortage
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 10
Activists of the Bhartiya Kisan Union(BKU) today staged a demonstration at the Mini Secretariat to protest against the power shortage during the paddy transplantation season.

They said, the government wanted farmers to transplant paddy after June 15, but even then adequate power was not being supplied to them.

The farmers alleged that the power supply was for three hours against the eight hour claimed by the government. They demanded that the power supply be increased so that the farmers were able to water their paddy .

The BKU also demanded reversing of the hike in prices of diesel. It pointed out, the increase in the prices had the worst effect on the agricultural economy in the state and had put additional burden on the farmers. 



Body seeks action against illegal architects
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 10
Fosroc Chemicals International, a flagship company of the $500-million JMH Group, launched its retail division in Punjab at the monthly meeting of the Ludhiana Architects Association (LAA) here on Saturday.

At the meeting, Mr Ravinder Khosla, president, LAA, spoke about the achievements of the association. Mr Rajesh Sareen, vice-president of the body, talked about problems created by illegal architects in the profession. He rued that the government was not taking any action against them.

Mr Sanjay Goel, organising secretary, said the LAA would launch the second edition of its directory along with IIA sub-chapter next month.



Lions Club members urged to help needy
Our Correspondent

Mandi Gobindgarh
Newly appointed regional chairman MJF Lion Dr Man Mohan Kaushal called a meeting of all club officials of the region –III of district 321-F at Gymkhana Club, here today. All zone chairpersons Lion O.P. Goyal, Lion Ramesh Kumar and Lion Lalit Mohan were present at the meeting.

Club officers of all eight clubs in the region, Samrala City, Samrala Smile, Nabha, Khanna, Sirhind, Aamkhas Bagh, Bassi Pathana and Morinda attended the meeting, said Mr Man Mohan Kuashal in a press note here today.

Dr Kaushal emphasised the need to serve the needy, downtrodden and less-privileged people of society. He also stressed the need to observe punctuality in meetings and requested all clubs not to serve liquor and non-vegetarian food during meetings.



Jagran at Ayyappa temple
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 10
The Ludhiana chapter of the Akhil Bharatiya Sewa Sangam organised a jagran at Shri Ayyappa Swami Mandir here last night. The jagran was performed by Tuslidharan Pillai, Biju Kumar and others.
Hundreds of people participated in the jagran. The Ayyappa temple is being managed by the Keralites here. 



Cop held for creating nuisance in hospital
Mahesh Sharma

Mandi Ahmedgarh, July 10
The police has arrested a Jagraon cop who, along with a woman and her son, had been booked under Sections 160, 294 and 34 of the IPC for allegedly creating hooliganism in a hospital after the staff and attendants caught them in a compromising position yesterday.

According to Mr Rachhpal Singh Hara, DSP, Malerkotla, Amarjit Singh of Chhanna village presently posted at the Dehlon police station was arrested by the police, when he was trying to leave the area yesterday. However, Harjinder Kaur and her son, Sarabjit Singh, other accused succeeded in dodging the police.

referring to information received from Mr Jaswinder Singh, SHO, (City), Mr Hara said Dr Sunit Hind, Director, Hind Hospital and Diagnostic Centre had accused the three of creating nuisance in the hospital after staff and attendants of other patients objected to Amarjit Singh's staying there.Harjinder Kaur was admitted to the Intensive Care Unit (ICU) of the hospital for the treatment of some cardiac disorder.

“Besides, creating a nuisance there Amarjit Singh interfered with the treatment of Harjinder Kaur who was put on life saving support and needed complete rest,” reported Dr Hind to the police.

Preliminary investigations revealed that the woman was allegedly admitted in the hospital with an ulterior motive of staying with the cop. Perusal of hospital records showed that her son Sarabjit, who is an unemployed had identified himself as a police official and name of patient was given as Premjit Kaur instead of Harjinder Kaur. They said she was a government employee.

A police party led by Mr Tara Chand swung into action immediately after receiving the report about the incident. Amarjit Singh, who was later found to be a Constable posted at the Dehlon police station was arrested when he was trying to leave the area in the evening.

the medical examination revealed that Amarjit was drunk at the time of incident and arrest. Harjinder Kaur and Sarabjit, who had dodged the police, were still absconding.



Liquor seized, two held
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, July 10
The police in two separate incident arrested two persons and recovered liquor from their possession. ASI Satnam Singh arrested Kulwant Singh of Guru Arjun Dev Nagar, Moga, near the bus stand and recovered 12 bottles of IMFL mark brand Big Boss. Whereas, H/C Chamkaur Singh arrested Tejinder Singh of the same locality near the same place and recovered the same quantity of the same brand. Both have been booked under the Excise Act.

Snatched: Some unknown person on a motor cycle snatched a gold chain from Sonia Sharma of Shakti Nagar, near Malak Road, Jagraon. The chain valued Rs 20,000. The police has registered a case under Section 356 of the IPC. No arrest has been made so for.

One held: The police has arrested Tejinder Singh, alias Tonny, of Patel Nagar Malout from Malak Chowk and recovered from his possession a stolen scooter. The police has registered a case under Sections 379 and 411of the IPC.



Industrialists briefed on IT policies
Our Correspondent

Mandi Gobindgarh, July 10
The Income Tax Department has been organising functions at industrial towns to create awareness regarding any new policy being launched by the department for the benefit of industrialists and traders, said Mr S.S. Kemwal, Additional Commissioner, Income Tax.

He was speaking at the inaugural function of an office, Ashwani Pradeep and Co, today at Motia Khan, Mandi Gobindgarh.

He said the new form introduced by the department has some new entries, mentioning the account number of a firm, which would bring the accounts online and the firm would not have to run to offices for the refund of tax which would automatically go into the account of the concerned firm.

Now, the department would organise the Tax-Awareness Camps at Amloh and Mandi Gobindgarh in the next month.

It had already conducted such camps at Sirhind, Dera Bassi and Lalru in this region, he added.

It was the result of such camps that the Income Tax Department had succeeded in enrolling 15,500 new accesses in Mandi Gobindgarh area last year.

He appreciated the tax advisors for their cooperation which worked as a link between the department and tax payers and helped the later to remove their misunderstandings. Mr Jagroop Singh, Assistant Commissioner, Mr Kehar Singh and Mr Karnail Singh (ITOs) were present.

Representing the industrialists, Mr Raj Bansal, Mr Mahender Gupta, Mr. Dinesh Aggarwal, Mr Gopal Singh, Mr Subhash Bansal, Mr. Surinder Garg, Mr Ashwani Garg and PPCC Secretary Joginder Singh Maini also spoke on the occasion.



Biz Clips
Channel launches products for kids

Cartoon Network Enterprises has launched its latest range of products for school-going children. A company press note issued here today said the range is in form of popular cartoon characters like Power Puff Girls, Dexter and Johnny Bravo. The range is available at all leading stationery and gift items shops, including multi-brand outlets like Ebony, Pyramid etc. It includes school bags, lunch boxes, water bottles, stationery items like books, pencils, erasers and sharpeners and is priced from Rs 28 to Rs 845. TNS

Incense sticks launched: House of Cycle has introduced its latest range of incense sticks in the Indian market under the brand name, “Lia”. The fragrances available have been named as spice world, rainbow, nature's gift, seashore, chandan, primerose etc.

The range boasts of having therapeutic powers too. These packs are available at all major ration shops in packs of 35 and 130 sticks and is priced at Rs 15 and Rs 50 respectively, a press note said. TNS



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