L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S

Industry to boycott CM's rally
Calls for statewide bandh on Nov 17
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, November 8
The local industry has decided to boycott the Chief Minister's rally scheduled to be held here on November 14.

Annoyed with the government’s "apathy” towards industry-related issues, industrialists have not only refused to participate in the rally, they will also wear black badges and hold protest rallies on that day.

The irked industry also gave a call for a statewide bandh on November 17.

The current issue pertaining to the absence of response on demand to extend the date for filing annual VAT returns, in particular, has caused great resentment among the industry that will hold protest rallies on November 16 and observe bandh the next day.

"Entire trade and industrial units across the state would remain closed on November 17," said Mr Varinder Kapoor, general secretary, United Cycle and Parts Manufacturers Association.

Industry representatives blamed the government for “ignoring” them and said the state government has failed to fulfill any of its promises. "Industry does not seem to be anywhere near the government's priorities. They have not fulfilled any promises, as a result of which industry Punjab is suffering heavily," rued Mr K.K. Seth, an industrialist.

Over a dozen leading industry associations, supported by several others, that would carry the protest campaign include the Chamber of Industrial and Commercial Undertakings, United Cycle and Parts Manufacturers Association, Apex Chamber of Commerce and Industry and Fasteners Manufacturers Association. To ensure participation from other cities, industry bodies have formed five-member teams to coordinate with associations at different places across the state.

Reiterating their demand to extend the last date for filing VAT returns from November 20, 2006, to March 31, 2007, industrialists said extending the date would not cause any revenue loss to government and it was un necessarily ignoring the issue. "On account of shortage of C forms, it is quite difficult for trade and industry to adhere to the November 20 deadline. We are unable to understand why the government is not paying attention to our genuine demand regarding extending the date," said Mr Rajnish Ahuja , president, Focal Point Sheds Association.

Other issues like delay in VAT refunds, non-reduction in oil and lubricant rates by the government, power shortage, too, have not been dealt with, industrialists complained.



Farmers protest land acquisition
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, November 8
Activists of all the major farmers' organisations today staged a massive dharna in front of the Mini Secretariat as part of their state-wide agitation against land acquisition by the government for big industrial houses. The Trident Group in Barnala is one such industrial house for which land is being acquired.

The farmers converged on the Mini Secretariat grounds from early in the morning. They said although it was only a district level protest, yet they ensured that maximum number of them participated.

The farmers said the government had no right to "snatch away" precious land from farmers and hand it to industrial house for peanuts. They pointed out that these industrial houses could always buy this land on their own at market prices.



Debris being dumped on forest land
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana November 8
The forest land along the Ferozepore Road continues to be misused with people continuing to dump the debris there. The forest officials have been maintaining that due to the shortage of staff they were not able to trace the people responsible as most of the debris was being dumped during the night hours.

With a lot of construction of new buildings going on along the Ferozepore Road the old buildings are being demolished. The huge debris is being thrown along the road even in front of schools and offices.

This has been causing a lot of problems to the people who pass by. Moreover, the concrete debris also creates road blocks and could be a cause of accident also. The residents of the area have already complained to the concerned officials, including the police. But no action has been taken so far.

A senior forest official told The Tribune that they have been keeping a watch for last few days so that to get hold of the culprits red-handed. The official pointed out people usually try to dump the debris after ensuring that nobody is watching. "Since we started a vigil nobody has come", he claimed.

The concrete dump is also damaging the trees planted along side the road by a charitable organisation.



Sarabha Nagar firing incident: girl gets anticipatory bail
Rajneesh Lakhanpal

Ludhiana, November 8
After over four-month legal battle, one of the four girls allegedly involved in the infamous Sarabha Nagar firing case today got anticipatory bail from the local court.

The Additional Sessions Judge, Mr A.K. Mehta, granted the bail to Pushpa Devi of Chandigarh. Earlier, the court had granted her interim bail.

The Punjab and Haryana High Court had already granted anticipatory bail to three other girls - Tript Kaur Pannu, Sukdeep Kaur and Neha Saini.

A case was registered under Sections 336 and 34 of the IPC and Section 25 of the Arms Act at the Sarabha Nagar police station on May 27.

The police had recorded the statement of an eyewitness in the court of Mr Tarsem Mangla, Judicial Magistrate. He had named three girls involved in the incident. But the name of Pushpa Devi did not figure in his statement. Later, the police had recorded the supplementary statement of the eyewitness in which her name figured.



Greed for '84 riots relief puts woman in dock
Mahesh Sharma

Mandi Ahmedgarh, November 8
Exploiting the symapthies attached to 1984 riot victims, a woman of Rachhin village allegedly tried to get the government compensation by showing that her husband had died in the riots where as he had died an year before in 1983.

The Raikot police has booked the accused woman on the charges of trying to cheat the government.

The police was also investigating if some government officials were hand in glove with her or not. They had allegedly issued her a red card and other documents related to identity of riot victims.

The police has registered a case on the basis of an enquiry conducted by Mr Prem Chand, SDM, Raikot. No arrest has been made so far.

SHO Dharampal Singh told the Ludhiana Tribune that Nachhatar Singh, son of Mohinder Singh of Rachhin village, had complained that Surjit Kaur of the same village had sought compensation for the death of her husband, Amar Singh, under the riot-victim category where as the deceased had died at a village in 1983 only.

On receiving the complaint, Mr Prem Chand, the then SDM, Raikot, had conducted a probe into the allegations levelled by the complainant and found that Surjit Kaur had made a futile attempt to dupe the government by preparing fake documents about the death of her husband.

Investigations revealed that Mr Amar Singh had died at his village in 1983 and his death was in no way concerned with riots in Bihar as claimed by Surjit Kaur.

Records at the cremation ground and the concerned police station also falsified claims made by the accused.

Finding substance in the complaint, Mr Prem Chand recommended registration of a criminal case against Surjit Kaur.

Having received directions from Mr R.K. Jaiswal, SSP, Jagraon, Mr Dharam Pal has now registered an FIR under Sections 420, 465, 468 and 511 of the IPC against the accused.

The police was trying to establish the identity of staff responsible for issuing red card, which entitled riot victim families to the facilities provided by the state government from time to time.

“Besides proceeding against the accused, we are trying to establish how she succeeded in getting fake documents, including red card, from the authorities concerned,” said Mr Dharam Pal.



Stop gender discrimination: expert
Our Correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh, November 8
Male child would cease to be the priority for Indian families in case daughters vowed to look after their parents during their old age, asserted Dr Jyoti Hind at a seminar on female foeticide held at Shanti Tara College and Collegiate Public School at Akbarpur Chhanna, near here, today.

The seminar was presided over by Ms Gurjit Kaur, general secretary, Mahila Congress, Ludhiana, and Mr Jagpal Singh Khangura was the chief guest.

While concluding the seminar, Dr Hind maintained that difference between sons and daughters would sublime spontaneously in case parents started feeling safe in the hands of their daughters. She said the sons were no more sailboats of their parents.

Calling upon women to shun conventional attitude about sex of the children, she solicited them to stop gender discrimination.

“When they have been provided right to live by their respective mothers, why should they snatch this privilege from their unborn daughters,” argued Dr Hind. She held that giving birth to healthy child was women’s birthright and nobody could force them to abort their foetuses in wombs. She reminded that present day daughters were tomorrow’s mothers.

Mr Khangura said most of problems related with women were generated by females only and males were blamed for nothing. He called upon the social organisations to associate with the administration to implement policies discouraging female foeticide.

Mr Arvind Malhotra and Mr Ajay Batra, secretary and Principal of college, respectively, Mr Ravinder Puri, president, Journalists Association, and Ms Amandeep Kaur Kalkat, District President, women cell of the Congress, also spoke on the occasion.

Organisers felicitated Dr Hind for her outstanding performance in educating people about consequences of female foeticide.



PPCC legal cell to participate in vikas yatra
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, November 8
The Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee legal cell, under the leadership of its state Chairman, Mr S. K Pipat,will participate in the Punjab Vikas Yatra started by Chief Minister Amarinder Singh and the Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee President Shamsher Singh Dullo.

This was claimed here by the district chairman of the local unit of the legal cell, Mr Dharmjit Singh Khera. He said that a function would be organised to felicitate the Chief Minister and Mr Dullo at Kheri Ghemeri Chowk near Lalton village on November 9 for their work for the uplift of people of the state.



Bush's effigy burnt
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, November 8
In protest against the death sentence awarded to Saddam Hussein, the disgraced President of Iraq, the Muslim Aman Society of Panjab today burnt an effigy of American President George Bush in Kabir Nagar of Basti Jodhewal area here yesterday.

Addressing the gathering on the occasion, Mr Mohammad Ansari, president of the society, said it was a matter of deep regret that America, by showing its muscle-power, had imprisoned and sentenced Saddam Hussein to death. By doing so, America had throttled not only the genuine aspirations of Iraqis but also insulted and throttled humanity at large.

Mr Ansari further said the world was witnessing writing of a new history as the president of a nation was bent upon showing his muscle power by killing the president of another nation. If the American judges were charging Saddam Hussein with the murder of 160 Shias and awarding him death sentence for doing so, then George Bush was guilty of ordering the killing of thousands of innocent Iraqis on the baseless suspicion that Iraq possessed biological and chemical weapons of mass destruction. Since no such weapons were found in Iraq after the war and death of thousands of innocent civilians, the UNO should announce death sentence for Goerge Bush as well as Prime Minister of England, Tony Blair.

Apart from a large number of Muslims, a fair number of Hindus were also present on the occasion.



Biz Clips

Ludhiana: The National Small Industries Corporation (NSIC) and Ludhiana Productivity Council (LPC) organised a seminar on their schemes pertaining to micro, small and medium enterprises. According to a press note, the NSIC and LPC signed an MoU earlier this month with an aim to contribute towards development of micro, small and medium enterprises through their schemes. Mr B. S. Brar, project manger, District Industries Centre, and Mr Rajiv Kapoor, senior branch manager, NSIC, were the chief guests. Mr Deepak Gupta from Dun and Bradstreet Corporation explained the credit rating scheme for exporters and industrial units. TNS



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