L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S

28 more suspected dengue cases surface
Kuldip Bhatia

Ludhiana, October 6
There seems to be no respite from dengue, at least for the time being, as 28 new patients, suspected to be afflicted with dengue, were admitted to the Christian Medical College and Hospital (CMCH) and the Dayanand Medical College and Hospital (DMCH) during the past 24 hours.

With quite a few patients seeking treatment at other local hospitals and nursing homes, the number of dengue cases in the city had gone well past 225.

According to hospital authorities, the CMCH and the DMCH had received 16 and 12 suspected cases while 18 others, already admitted to the CMCH for treatment of high-grade fever, had serologically tested positive for dengue, said Dr John Abraham, Medical Superintendent of the hospital.

Seventy suspected and confirmed cases of mosquito-borne viral infection were under treatment at institutions.

In what could be described as a damage-control exercise, the Health Department here had set up 28 rapid response teams, each headed by medical officer of the area concerned, which were directed to take immediate action to deal with cases of dengue.

These teams would have a malaria inspector and three anti-larva spray teams attached.

Dr Yash Pal Singla, Civil Surgeon, said that the city had been divided into five sectors and each sector in charge, a medical officer, would supervise work of rapid response teams under his or her jurisdiction.

These sector heads would maintain coordination with private hospitals in their respective areas about suspected or confirmed cases of dengue.

In an attempt to educate the public about the symptoms and prevention of dengue, the medical students and faculty of the Community Medicine Department at the CMCH today started a dengue awareness programme in vulnerable areas of the city.

This initiative was spearheaded by Dr Sanjay Gupta, Assistant Professor in the department.

Dr Gupta said a team of medical and paramedical professionals, along with students, went to the Vardhman Colony and held street plays at locations in the locality.

The play highlighted the clinical features of dengue and the preventive measures that could be taken for protection.

There were quite a few questions after the play from the onlookers on how to prevent mosquito breeding and what was to be done if a person was suspected to have dengue.



Six cases reported
Lovleen Bains

Doraha, October 6
Six cases of dengue have been reported at the Sidhu Hospital here recently. Dr Gursharan, chief physician at the hospital, said eight other cases of mosquito-borne viral infection had been admitted to the hospital along with others attacked by mild or serious degree of temperature, but were yet to test positive for the infection.

As more patients with dengue were being admitted, there was a cause for scare and taking immediate and effective precautions, failing which the situation could assume serious proportions, he added.

He suggested various steps to be taken on a war footing to nullify the effect of the virus as far as possible.

As the mosquito causing dengue bred in stagnant water, steps must be taken to ensure clean and hygienic surroundings by using mosquitoes repellents, pouring kerosene on stagnant water and using DDT, he stated.

The moment a patient suffering from mild fever was reported, no time must be lost to get the blood test done as time and duration were significant in this infection, he said.

The more the prolonging, the less the platelet count would be and the fewer the chances of recovery, he added.



Anti-dengue drive launched
Mahesh Sharma

Mandi Ahmedgarh, October 6
To curb the outbreak of dengue, the local civic body launched a massive drive today to check the spread of carrying agents.

Various social and educational organisations supplemented the efforts by creating awareness about preventive measures among students and other organised groups.

Besides augmenting solid waste management arrangements, the civic body authorities launched a drive to spray insecticides in the town and surrounding area to check the growth of vector for microbes of the disease.

Dr Indu, SDM, Malerkotla, said she had directed the executive officer of the council to take necessary steps to keep the town clean and dry so that the causative factors could be minimised.

Referring to information received from Mr Jagjit Singh Jajj, executive officer, and Mr Jatinder Bhola, president of the council, Dr Indu said teams of scavengers and operators had been prepared ward-wise which would ensure the spray of insecticide and removal of stagnant water.

The SDM urged leaders of various social and educational institutes to join hands with the civil administration in awaring masses about manifestations of the disease and preventive measures.

“Though we have made all efforts to check the disease causing factors, the residents should take protective measures also,” said Dr Indu.

She suggested that everybody, irrespective of age and sex, should wear full-sleeved shirts and full-length trousers.

Heads of various educational institutes advised their students and staff to follow instructions given by the administration.



Karva Chauth shopping on
Shivani Bhakoo

Ludhiana, October 6
Though the festival of Karva Chauth is a few days away, shopping for it has begun in the city, with the city wearing a festive look these days.

Women have been buying bangles and other items related to the festival in advance to avoid the last-minute rush.

Women were seen buying bindis, sarees, matthis, feniyan and sweets at places in the Ghumar Mandi, Dandi Swami, Deep Nagar and Sarabha Nagar markets here today. The most busy of all were mehndi and tattoo artists, booking hundreds of orders in the city everyday.

Be it beauticians of the city or roadside mehndi artists, women had been approaching them to get mehndi on their hands on the eve of Karva Chauth.

Mr Rajiv, a shopkeeper at the Ghumar Mandi, said women had started buying bangles.

“Bangles and mehndi have always been a craze among women. They are so fond of bangles that they get dresses to match those. We are selling bangles at reasonable rates, but a day before Karva Chauth, those would be sold at higher prices. It is a day we get a good clientele”, he said.

Ms Indra Ahluwalia said she had booked orders of mehndi in advance.

“This time we will introduce some unique designs, especially for newly weds. The mehndi which will be applied on the hands of women is purely herbal. There are no synthetics which can cause rashes or allergy. As it is time-consuming and needs perfection, we have started applying mehndi for Karva Chauth”, she said.

Women had always been crazy about jewellery and clothes, but women here did not mind spending thousands in a single day on those, especially during Karva Chauth and Divali.

A showroom owner on the Mall Road said buyers had a shopping spirit his time.

“Our clientele is not limited to the upper strata, but we have all kinds of customers. As Karva Chauth is approaching, daughters-in-laws and mothers-in-laws are busy buying clothes”, he said.

Mr Bitta, a shopkeeper at the Cemetery Road, said sarees remained the favourite among Indian women.

“They always look for the same. A majority of our customers demand sarees on Karva Chauth. Women prefer elegant and intricate embroidery on sarees and georgette, crepe and silks are much in demand”, he said.



Ludhianavis love to spend on food, clothes: survey
Shveta Pathak
Tribune News Service

Suneal Mangal
Suneal Mangal

Ludhiana, October 6
That city residents are food lovers is now supported by facts and figures. At Ansal Plaza, the sole Mall here, the food outlets record an average daily sale of Rs 6 lakh. Mr Suneal Mangal, Director of the company, said in the one year of its operations, outlets in the Mall were witnessing an average sale of around Rs 25 lakh a day of which Rs 6 lakh came from fast-food sale.

“The response we got in Ludhiana has been quite encouraging. People here love to spend on eating and clothes. Besides food, branded clothes are getting an equally good response,” said Mr Mangal, who was in the city on the occasion of anniversary celebrations of the Mall.

The Ansal Plaza Mall Management Company (APMMC), in association with The Tribune, launched ‘Ek Din Ka Raja’, a contest to mark its anniversary celebrations that would continue till October 15. During this period customers who shop at the Mall will get coupons that entitle them to a lucky draw. Winners will get prizes like Rs 1 lakh and consumer durables like television, vacuum cleaner, microwave ovens etc.

Mr Mangal said an average week day witnessed 5,000 to 6,000 visitors and this number went up to almost 12,000 on Saturdays and more than 25,000 on Sundays. “First mover advantage has helped us a lot and people have given a good response to the Mall. One year after its launch, the Mall has 54 showrooms and five restaurants. It is not only residents of this city who visit the Mall, people from areas around the city and places like Jalandhar and Amritsar too come for shopping here,” he said.

Revealing a recent survey the company did, taking 750 persons from different age groups, Mr Mangal said it was a good shopping experience, which made shoppers opt for a Mall than a regular market place.

The company, he revealed, was focusing on this region for expansion and would be coming up with four malls in Punjab, one each in Amritsar, Jalandhar, Mohali and Ludhiana, a group housing project in Jalandhar and a SEZ on the Chandigarh road here.

“Land has already been acquired and most of these projects will be completed within the next four to five years. While expansion is on across the country, it is the northern region we are focussing on,” he added.

Meanwhile, a fashion show was also organised in the evening by Cotton County at the Mall.



GK group launches employment plan
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, October 6
The GK group of companies, which is engaged in real estate business, today launched an ‘employment plan’ under which it is targeting to provide employment to thousands of educated youth in the country.

Mr Gulshan Kumar, Managing Director, today said that the company had chalked out a plan under which it would attach 300 youth in the first phase and increase this number to 90,000 across the country gradually.

The company will appoint these people as its authorised dealers who will promote the company’s projects. “All they have to do is fill in an application form and take a franchisee. They will be allotted an area in the city by the company and will get commission for any sales they generate. Besides, if the company buys any product in their area, they would be entitled for a commission there as well.”

Talking about the company’s projects, he said the company has eight colonies and is shortly coming up with group housing projects and another project called GK Valley.

“In GK Valley, we would supply gas through pipelines. In case of other projects, we plan to come with around 2,000 flats and target middle income categories. The projects are intended to be implemented on Ferozepur Road, Pakhowal Road , Gill Road, Chandigarh Road and Dhandra Road,” he added.

He said atleast two of the six housing projects would begin around a month. “We are also coming up with a bus service for our customers to view our sites.”



Animal Week concludes
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, October 6
Animal Week, organised by the Hope Animal Welfare Society, concluded here today. The society conducted various awareness programmes and painting competitions in schools during the week.

Ms Poonam Kalra, founder of the society, said, “We started celebrating animal week six years ago and it has been an effective way to sensitise people about animals, the importance of vaccination and behaviour towards animals.”

While 30 children participated in the painting competition ‘Save the Animals’, Bonn Bread and Lucky Bakery supported the cooking competition.

Kundan Vidya Mandir (KVM) conducted an on- the-spot painting competition and the society organised an awareness camp for the general public along with an anti-rabies vaccination camp at the Punjab Agricultural University (PAU) Animal Clinic.

Ms Kalra said, “People often talk about stray animals causing troubles. However, with awareness, we can learn how to be more patient and find ways to deal with animals so that they do not harm us.”



NGOs can play a bigger role, says DC

Ludhiana, October 6
Mr Ashok Kumar Gupta, Deputy Commissioner, today called upon NGOs and the business community to come forward in a big way to provide liberal financial assistance to the institutions engaged in the education and rehabilitation of mentally and physically challenged children.

He was addressing a function after inaugurating the two-day Carnival of Lights here. The Deputy Commissioner said the Nirdosh School for mentally challenged children had been rendering excellent service in providing education and rehabilitation.

He appealed to the participants to contribute for mentally challenged children by purchasing items from the carnival as the returns were to be spent on their welfare. — TNS



Deer kills another

Ludhiana, October 6
The Special Wildlife Week celebrations in the region were badly hit when a fight between two barking deer (kakkar) to win the love of a female of the species at the Tiger Safari-cum-Zoo resulted in the death of one of them.

The incident has exposed the pitfalls of keeping disproportionate number of males and females of a species in an enclosure.

Though such fights are part of the natural behaviour of animals in their natural habitat, the death in an enclosure has raised questions about the ‘failure’ of the zoo staff in acting in time to separate the two.

The lack of medical facilities at the zoo also contributed to the death, sources added. TNS



Shobha yatra taken out
Our Correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh, October 6
Residents of the town paid obeisance to Maharishi Balmiki, Luv and Kush during a shobha yatra organised by activists and office-bearers of the Balmiki Samaj Luv Kush Colony at Jagera Road here today.

The shobha yatra was accorded a warm welcome at various places in the town. A large number of devotees from all sections of society paid respects when it passed through Railway Road, Chaura Bazar, Bhagat Singh Chowk, Gandhi Chowk, Bazar Bajajan and Galla Mandi.

Office-bearers of various organisations offered drinks and eatables to the devotees accompanying the yatra.



Cop attacked
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, October 6
An unidentified person on Wednesday allegedly attacked a police party injuring Head Constable Chamkaur Singh at Sudhar Bazar. The police has registered a case under Section 307, 353, 332, 186, 34 of the IPC. Chamkaur Singh has been admitted to the DMCH. No arrest has been made so far.

One held for gambling: The police on Wednesday arrested Sohan Singh of Biharigarh (UP) on the charge of gambling at Chowki Mann village and allegedly seized Rs 4200. A case under Section 13-A, 3, 67 of the Gambling Act has been registered.



BSNL launches new schemes
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, October 6
To commemorate BSNL week being observed from October 1 to 7, the Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) has launched a special reconnection plan for disconnected subscribers without paying rent for the period of disconnection.

Under this plan, any disconnected customers can apply for reconnection of disconnected telephone connection. Depending on reasons for disconnection, rebate in pending telephone bill could also be given in deserving cases. This scheme would be valid till December.

Stating this in a news conference here on Thursday, the General Manager Telecom, Mr S.K. Nigam said that the BSNL had also decided to revise monthly fixed charges for its ‘sulabh plan’ from Rs 99 to Rs 75 per month for rural areas with exchange capacity of less than 30,000 and from Rs 160 to Rs 120 for urban areas with exchange capacity of more than one lakh. In addition, discounts would also be offered on annual advance payment.

He said that conversion of postpaid CellOne connections to prepaid Excel connection would be allowed for a limited period. Similarly, activation charges of postpaid mobile connections had been reduced from Rs 200 to Rs 100 whereas no activation charges would be payable under the Punjab Government mobile plan.

In a bid to attract more customers to its fold, the BSNL would provide full talk time on recharge coupons of denomination of Rs 300 while the recharge coupon of Rs 2000 would have a talk time of Rs 2200 with validity up to 365 days.

The BSNL was in the process of installing automatic bill payment machines for accepting cheque and cash payments, as also for issuing recharge coupons.

“Last year, we introduced broadband services ‘DataOne’ in Ludhiana, Jagraon, Samrala, Khanna, Doraha, Machhiwara, Mullanpur, Raikot and Sahnewal towns, where more than 7600 subscribers had availed this service for their homes and businesses,” said Mr Nigam.



Carnival of lights a huge draw
Our Correspondent

People admire display of jewellery at a stall during the Carnival of Lights in Ludhiana on Friday.
People admire display of jewellery at a stall during the Carnival of Lights in Ludhiana on Friday. — Photo: I.V.

Ludhiana, October 6
Huge crowds turned up at the Carnival of Lights at the Rotary Bhavan here today.

Right from the entrance to the hall, one could see beautifully done up pathway.

The stalls had exquisitely crafted jewellery with emphasis on precious gem stones and diamonds.

Elegant household linen, eye-catching pottery, studded evening bags, embroidered shawls, and artefacts filled viewers with joy.

The food pavilion had a lot of variety for gourmets and a play pen for children gave them satisfaction.



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