L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S

Ludhiana-Sahnewal third rail line to be laid: Lalu
Jupinderjit Singh
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 27
Union Minister for Railways Lalu Prasad Yadav today announced that a third rail line would be laid from Sahnewal to Ludhiana so that the Chandigarh-Ludhiana train could have a smooth run.

The Sahnewal-Ludhiana line would be constructed for a stretch of 13.40 km, as the traffic on the existing two lines on the Ludhiana-Delhi was quite heavy. The Railways Minister said the work for the laying of the third line would start soon.

He said for the Chandigarh-Morinda rail, the train 1UC/2UC, presently running between Ambala Cantonment and Chandigarh, would be extended to run to Nangal Dam and would be re-numbered 1UCN/2UCN. The halts between Chandigarh and Nangal Dam would be at Mohali, Kharar, Morinda, Kurali, Mianpur, Rupnagar, Ghanauli, Bharatgarh, Kiratpur Sahib and Anandpur Sahib. 1UCN will depart from Ambala Cantonment at 7.30 a.m. to reach Nangal Dam at 12 noon, while the return service 2UCN would leave Nangal Dam at 3 p.m. to reach Ambala Cantonment at 7.35 p.m.

The train, presently running between Ambala Cantonment and Churaru Takrala via Rajpura-Sirhind, would be diverted to run via Ambala Cantt-Chandigarh-Morinda-Churaru Takrala. This service would be introduced from Ambala from September 27 and from Churaru Takrala from September 28. The train 1 CNA would depart from Ambala Cantonment at 1.30 p.m. to reach Churaru Takrala at 6.40 p.m., while the return service 2 CNA would depart from Churaru Takrala at 6.10 a.m. to reach Ambala Cantonment at 11.55 a.m. Enroute, the train would halt at Dhulkot, Lalru, Dhappart, Ghaggar, Chandigarh, Mohali, Kharar, Morinda, Kurali, Mianpur, Rupnagar, Ghanauli, Bharat Garh, Kiratpur Sahib, Anandpur Sahib, Nangal Dam, Naya Nangal, Raj Mehatpur, Una and Panoh.

Giving details about the Chandigarh-Ludhiana Rail project, he said the Chandigarh-Ludhiana new BG line was of 112m length, of which the first section between Chandigarh-Morinda had been built at a cost of Rs 195 crore. It has 125 bridges, of which seven are major, 98 minor, three road-over-bridges and 17 road-under-bridges. It has 11 level crossings that are all manned. The section covers five stations, Chandigarh-Mohali-Kharar, New Morinda and Morinda.

The track structure of this section is of 52 kg rails laid on pre-stressed concrete sleepers and 250mm ballast cushion. State-of-the art systems in operations and safety have been provided. The Mohali station has two high-level platforms with a covered area, foot over bridge, three tickets counters, one waiting room, waiting hall, toilets and 63 water taps.



Traffic cops show humane side
Help woman in labour, heart patients out of traffic snarls
Jupinderjit Singh
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 27
Contrary to the reputation of causing undue harassment to public during a VVIP visit, the traffic police of the city today showed its human face by arranging transport for a pregnant woman who went in labour while caught in a traffic jam near Rose Garden from where the PM cavalcade was to pass.

Another team of the traffic cops deployed near Rajpura Chowk convinced residents to open gates in Kitchlu Nagar area to enable as many as 15 heart patients to reach Hero DMC hospital. The patients too were caught in the traffic jam.

In the first case the traffic police personnel deployed near Saggu Chowk (near Rose Garden) were put in a quandary when a man sought their help as his pregnant wife who was in a car stranded in the traffic jam went into labour. The area fell in Red Zone of the PM security as he was to pass through this road to reach Guru Nanak Stadium. SP (Traffic) Roopinder Singh said Inspector Jagwinder Singh arranged a police vehicle for the woman after taking permission from his senior officials. The woman was carefully taken out from her car, shifted to the police vehicle which took her to DMCH.

On the other side of the hospital, many heart patients on routine as well as emergency visit to the hospital were caught in the traffic jam. The Hambran Road was choc a bloc with vehicles and as there was no way out for the patients, their relatives were seen arguing with cops and drivers of other vehicles.

The police found out that some roads passing through Kitchlu Nagar, Block-A could be used to reach DMCH but the residents had locked the gates, which had been erected to check crime in the area. The police prevailed upon the residents to open the gates and enabled the patients to reach the hospital after passing through the colony.

Though the commuters were put to inconvenience yesterday due to unannounced rehearsals of the traffic movement and diversions, not many jams occurred today. However, some commuters were unhappy as they had to take a longer route to reach their destinations.

However, not many residents were seen on the road till about 4 pm. The residents started coming out after the restrictions imposed due to Prime Minister’s visit were lifted.



Thousands turn up at PM’s rally
Equal number returns disappointed
Vimal Sumbly
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 27
Thousands of persons today turned up at Guru Nanak Stadium to listen to the Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh. Many more returned disappointed as they could not make it to the venue in time. Partly due to the severe traffic restrictions and partly due to assumption of rally starting late, a number of people returned disappointed without listening to the Prime Minister.

The timing of the rally was little early. The organisers had announced that the rally would start at around 10 am. However, the Prime Minister arrived at the stadium at 11 am. People were still pouring into the stadium expecting it to start late. The entire function took just 70 minutes to complete. While initially part of the stadium was empty, within half an hour the entire stadium was filled and people still kept on pouring in.

The Prime Minister started his speech at 10 minutes to 12 and finished at eight minutes past 12. Usually, people arrive at the rallies at around noon only. Moreover, the people had come from different parts of the state. Plus the diverted routes they had to take, making their journey longer, made them miss the real occasion they had travelled for so long.

There was limited space at the dais. The seats were reserved for the Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh, the Governor, Lieut-Gen S.F. Rodrigues, the Chief Minister, Capt Amarinder Singh, the Railway Minister, Mr Lalu Prasad, the Union Minister of State for Finance, Mr Pawan Bansal, the Union Minister of State for Industries, Mr Ashwani Kumar, the Deputy Chairman, Planning Commission of India, Mr Montek Singh Ahluwalia, the Deputy Chief Minister, Ms Rajinder Kaur Bhattal, and the Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee President, Mr Shamsher Singh Dullo. There were two more chairs which remained vacant as the Lok Sabha Deputy Speaker, Mr Charanjit Singh Atwal, and the local MP, Mr Sharanjit Singh Dhillon, (both belonging to the SAD) stayed away from the function.

All Cabinet ministers, deputy ministers, parliamentary secretaries, legislators and local leaders were made to sit in special VIP enclosures. For a while, they had to mix up all and sundry, who had managed entry through the VVIP gate and occupied seats in the VIP enclosures.

There were unprecedented security arrangements in and outside the stadium. All routes leading to the stadium were blocked. The vehicles were let in after thorough questioning.

The minister and parliamentary secretaries had a taste of the security arrangements as their vehicles were also stopped and let ahead only after good questioning.

While three gates of the stadium were for the entry of the common public, one gate was reserved for the VVIP entry meant for the ministers, legislators and journalists. The checking and frisking was intense at this gate. People walking into the stadium through this gate were frisked. However, all this was done with extreme decency and politeness. For a change, the cell phones were also allowed inside the stadium.



Bihari divers not allowed to meet Lalu
Kanchan Vasdev
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 27
When these two migrants from Bihar heard that former Chief Minister of their native state, Mr Lalu Prasad Yadav, would be in town, they were overjoyed at the prospect of meeting him and narrating him their tale of woes.

But when Mr Yadav actually reached the city today, they were not allowed to have a glimpse of the Union Minister for Railways what to talk of meeting him. These two divers, Satyan Sahani and Rudal Mahato, who were not given the promised jobs by the Municipal Corporation for fishing out many bodies involved in various accidents had to go back disappointed.

Though it was understandable that they could not be made to meet Mr Yadav due to security reasons, the fact that they were not allowed to enter the venue of the public rally left them disappointed.

‘‘We wanted to meet our leader. But when we reached the road near Guru Nanak Stadium with our papers, the policemen asked us to go away. Otherwise people were allowed inside. Maybe, they thought that we could create trouble with our documents, ’’ rued Sahani.

In his simplicity, he added that had the cops told Mr Yadav that two Biharis wanted to meet him, he would have come running to them. ‘‘We would have told him how we were treated in this city.’’

They stood there for two hours and came back empty-handed.

The divers were awarded by the LMC some years for recovering many bodies of well-diggers and other persons involved in different accidents. Besides honouring them, the MC officials had said that they would be absorbed in the civic body, but even after six years, the promise remains unfulfilled.

Not only that they have not been given jobs, the monetary award of Rs 50,000 each announced to them at that time also eludes them. They were given trophies and were garlanded at a function but an amount of Rs 1,000 each was given to them by the Red Cross.

‘‘We had written to Minister of Chemicals and Fertilisers and Steel, Government of India, Mr Ram Vilas Paswan, who is also from Bihar. He wrote to Local Bodies Department of Punjab to provide us jobs as promised.”

“Do you think Lalu would not have helped us? We will write to him apprising him of today's situation, ’’ they said.

Showing the letter of Mr R.P. Rathi, Officer on Special Duty to Mr Ram Vilas Paswan, dated June 29, 2006, (number-05/01/CFSM/06), to the Personal Secretary of Local Bodies Minister that their case should be considered sympathetically and they should be given a job in the MCL, the duo said that nothing could help them.

They added that despite moving from pillar to post all these years, they were waiting for the promises made to them to transform into reality. Their skill is so much acknowledged by the district administration that whenever a body is to be fished out from some water body, they are summoned.



History sheeter gets seat in VIP block
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 27
Notwithstanding the massive security imposed for the Prime Minister’s visit to the city today and multi-tier security set up at the venue, Guru Nanak Stadium, a history sheeter of category-A was seen sitting in the VIP enclosures after gaining entry on the basis of a pass issued by the district administration.

This was quite a shift from the routine manner of the police functioning where bad characters are generally rounded up and detained before such important functions or religious festivals. Interestingly, senior police officials have put him under a scanner due to various allegations against him.

A senior official told The Tribune that activities of Shambhu were under watch as the police did not want further trouble after the arrest of Nirdosh Dhand, a well-known financier.

Shambhu Prasad, a migrant from Bihar, who runs a finance business in the city, faces as many as 7 FIRs of kidnapping, looting and beating persons. He was mainly charged with loaning money on high interest rates and allegedly using force to take the money back.

One of the complainants, Hira Lal and his wife had to sit on a fast before the Deputy Commissioner office for days to get a case registered against him.

The passes and cards for the function were issued after thorough examination of the person. Yet, a man against whom the police had registered FIRs was seen passing through the security checks which were manned by police officials who wanted to arrest him.

Shambhu was earlier also spotted in a rally of Mr Shamsher Singh Dullo, president, Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee.

He had tried to participate in a rally during the inauguration of the City Centre Project, presided over by Capt Amarinder Singh, but he was not allowed to enter the premises.

SSP A.S. Rai said Shambhu could not be arrested as he had got bail in the most of cases. In one of the cases, a city court had ordered that the police had to serve him a 3-day notice before arresting him.

Mr Rai said merely registration of cases did not mean that a man was guilty and his movement was curtailed.

All seven FIRs were registered against him at the Focal Point police station but he was never arrested. The number of the FIRs are, 313/2001, 139/2004, 152/2004, 225/2005, 109/2006, 172/2006, and 177/2006.



Encroachers back to business as PM leaves
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 27
The Prime Minister, Dr Manmohan Singh, came to the city and went. But the encroachers, who disappeared from city roads two days ago, came back as the PM left the city.

Soon after he left Laddowal after inaugurating the FieldFresh Agriculture Centre, the encroachers were back on business. So were stray cattle and the beggars.

The Prime Minister was in the city to lay the foundation stone of the Dedicated Freight Corridor Railway project and to inaugurate the Chandigarh-Morinda rail line and to flag off the Amritsar-Hardwar Jan Shatabdi Express.

He landed on Punjab Agricultural University campus in chopper and took the road route to reach Guru Nanak Stadium. Interestingly, the route which was to be followed by him to reach the venue, was free from encroachers, who usually dot all roadsides.

City’s worst traffic bottlenecks, including Damoria bridge, Old DMC Road, Kailash Cinema Road, New Sabzi Mandi Road, Vrindavan Road, Deep Nagar, which are otherwise chock-a-block with encroachers and heaps of garbage, virtually looked like roads leading to a model city.

It was a rare occasion for buses on the Jalandhar bypass also, which were parked at the stipulated bus stop and not blocking traffic in the middle of the road.

The roads were lined with lime powder and were taken guard of by “dutiful” cops, who remained on their tenterhooks throughout the day to manage the traffic.

Unfortunately, the cleanliness and the discipline was maintained till the Prime Minister was in the city. Soon after he left, it was back to square one.

Kudos to the employees of the Ludhiana Municipal Corporation, who had worked overtime to convert city into a heaven, literally. Heaps of garbage were removed overnight and the shopkeepers encroaching the already narrow roads were restrained from their daily practice.



Officials assure transparency in IT surveys
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, September 27
Income tax cases for scrutiny will be picked up strictly in accordance to the spirit and guidelines issued by the Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT). In case of any discrimination or deviation from the CBDT directions in this regard senior officials concerned must be intimated so that suitable corrective steps are taken.

This assurance was given by Mr A.P Srivastava, Mr R.K Roye and Mr Vijay Kumar, Commissioners of Income Tax (CITs) while addressing a joint meeting of office-bearers, executive members and delegates of the District Taxation Bar Association (Direct Taxes) and Taxation Bar Association (TBA) here last evening.

The delegations of the two associations were led by Mr Subhash Jain, president, DTBA and Mr Ashok Juneja, president, TBA.

The Bar members were told that non-auditable cases, where the amount of loan or fresh capital exceeded Rs 10 lakh would be selected for scrutiny if these were approved by the Chief Commissioner. The list of the cases fixed for scrutiny will be displayed on the notice board of the department for the purpose of transparency in accordance with the guidelines of CBDT.

Responding to queries raised by Mr Juneja and Mr Jain, the CITs observed that attempts would be made to cut down delay in the processing of cases and issuing refunds speedily for which computer system was being upgraded and further modernised.

Mr B.R Kaushal, convener of Study Circle of the TBA, along with Mr Anup Jain, former president of DTBA raised the issue of non-acceptance of returns when certain computers were rendered non-functional due to a variety of reasons. The IT officials assured that in such instances, returns would be accepted manually or other computer systems would be used in order to avoid delay or inconvenience to the assesses and Bar members.

The Bar members were further told that before issuing penalty notice under Section 221 for not depositing demand amount, the assesses would be informed regarding the nature and details of demand raised by the department as well as demand notice will be issued as per law.

The IT commissioners remarked that even though the mega city was witnessing an unprecedented progress and development of infrastructure, yet a large number of people still appeared to be showing income which was grossly disproportionate to their assets, volume of business and standard of living. They made a fervent appeal to such assesses to file returns based on their true income and pay due taxes to avoid surveys and raids. Expressing agreement with these views, Mr Juneja and Mr Jain said all those earning taxable income but not filing income tax returns, must come forward voluntarily for tax compliance.

Senior officials of the department, including Mr Rajeshwar Yadav, Mr J.S Minhas, Mr Sandeep Dahiya, Mr S.S Rana, Mr Lakshman Singh and Mr Kanwaljit Singh were among those present on the occasion.



Dullo supports SEZ order
Shveta Pathak
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 27
The order pertaining to Special Economic Zones (SEZs) needs to be followed in toto, since the Congress President has desired it, said Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee president Shamsher Singh Dullo while talking to reporters here today.

The PPCC chief said the issue of setting up SEZs on prime agricultural land was in the right direction and that Ms Gandhi’s concern about the same was to the benefit of farmers.

“It would be beneficial for marginal farmers,” he said, adding, “Whatever she says we will support it. “ He maintained that “existing contracts cannot be cancelled”.

Talking about Bharti group’s FieldFresh Foods project, he said the company should take measures to bring more awareness about uses of adopting horticulture.

“It should reach people at the block levels. When you complete globally, you have to bring in technology,” he asserted.



When art transcends religion
Shivani Bhakoo

Ludhiana, September 27
Art transcends religion and this is evident from the fact that more than 25 Muslims from Agra have landed in the city to make effigies of Ravana, Meghnada and Kumbhkarana for Dasehra festival.

Shakeel, one of the artists preparing the effigy of Ravana at Daresi ground said the group had come to the city along with their families in August. ‘‘Making idols and effigies of Hindu Gods and Goddesses is our traditional profession. We learnt the art from our fathers and forefathers and it gives us a feeling of satisfaction when our art is appreciated’’, he said.

Asgar Ali, the main contractor said last year too they had prepared the effigies for various committees in the city. ‘‘We have made effigies at Upkaar Nagar and Agar Nagar also. Hardwork by a lot of artists is involved in making a single effigy. The artists are on daily wages. A good artist can make about Rs 150 per day’’, said Ali.

The artists and their families are staying in tents put up at Daresi Ground. It takes about 10-15 days to make these three effigies, which are burnt on Dasehra night. Bamboos, huge quantity of paper, sparkling colourful wrapping sheets and other decorative items are used to make the effigies.

Anwar, another craftsman said he always looked forward to be in the city as people here celebrated festivals lavishly on these effigies. ‘‘They do not mind spending a few thousand rupees on getting these effigies made. We feel good while coming here. Otherwise, we have our own professions in Agra but those are not so lucrative. We get good money here for our hardwork. I have been coming here for the past many years now’’, said Anwar.



Workshop held on solid waste management
Our Correspondent

Mandi Gobindgarh, September 27
The Lions Club organised a workshop on Solid Waste Management, Energy Conservation and Environment Cleanliness at Municipal Council hall here today.

Mr Henke Klosters, an expert of Netherlands, was the keynote speaker. He stressed the need of installation of waste processing plants so that it could be used for other purposes after recycling.

He suggested that industrial waste should not be thrown in the open or in the rivulets like Budda Nullah at Ludhiana.

Mr Malwinder Singh, member secretary, Punjab Pollution Control Board, was the chief guest. He was accompanied by Mr Avtar Singh, SDO, Punjab Pollution Control Board, and Mr Gurnam Singh, XEN, of the board.

Mr Malwinder Singh asked the municipal council to adopt adequate measures to control the pollution so that the city might become a model city.

Mr Jagmeet Singh Sahota, president, Municipal Council, Mandi Gobindgarh, was the guest of honour. Mr Sahota assured that the council would leave no stone unturned in the field of waste management.



Forum to remember Bhagat Singh today
Our Correspondent

Doraha, September 27
The Youth Forum of Doraha will celebrate the centenary of Shaheed Bhagat Singh tomorrow. Stating this in a press note, Mr Jandeep Kaushal, chairman of the forum, said that it had decided to celebrate the occasion with fervour and enthusiasm, for which a series of programmes had been planned.

On September 28, the forum will be offering tributes to the martyr by garlanding his statue in the grain market at 7 a.m.

At 12 noon, an inter-school declamation contest will be organised with the assistance of the youth club at Guru Nanak National College Doraha in which students of various schools will speak on the ideals and approach of Bhagat Singh for the country's salvation. In the evening, a “Chetna-March” will be conducted through the main market road that will conclude in the grain market.

Mr Mudit Mohindra, Mr Joginder Kirti, Mr Bobly Anand, Mr Khushal Jaggi, Mr Rajwinder Dhaliwal, Mr Anil Bhanot, Mr Gagan Bector, Mr Khushwant Singh, Prof Williamjit Singh and Prof Heera were present in the meeting.



Katyal re-elected welfare body gen secy
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 27
Mr R.R. Katyal was unanimously re-elected general secretary of the Kidwai Nagar Welfare Society. Mr Katyal has been holding this assignment since 1986.

According to a press note of the society, the nomination to the post of the president and cashier of the society was postponed till further meeting.



Man commits suicide
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, September 27
Sat Pal Singh (28) of Kular village committed suicide by consuming some poisonous substance yesterday. He was married to Sarbjit Kaur of Halwara two years ago.

He was allegedly assaulted by Karnail Singh and Buta Singh, his father-in-law and brother-in-law, respectively. He was taken to the Civil Hospital where he died in the evening. The police has registered a case under Section 306 of the IPC against Karnail Singh and Buta Singh.



Traders meet Excise official

Ludhiana, September 27
The Apex Chamber of Commerce and Industry highlighted the problems being faced by the industry regarding central excise, service tax and customs to the Chief Commissioner, Central Excise and Customs, at a meeting held here on Monday evening. — TNS



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