L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S

LIG flats without water for 1 year
Kanchan Vasdev
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 17
Dilly-dallying on the part of the Ludhiana Municipal Corporation in paying money to the Water Supply and Sewerage Board (WSSB) for the installation of a tubewell is forcing around 4,000 residents of LIG Flats in Sector 32 to literally live without water in this sweltering heat.

For more than a year, the residents of 906 flats are dependent on a single tubewell for their water needs that supplies very low pressure and dirty water. Last year, one of the tubewells failed due to the declining water table. Since then, they are making rounds of the LMC to get a new tubewell installed, but to no avail.

Things have come to such a pass that they have to boil water before drinking and they go without taking bath for days together. The clothes are also not washed.

‘‘At times we go to the homes of friends and relatives to take a bath as it becomes impossible to stay without it in this weather. But nobody is caring, ’’ said Chamkaur Singh Parmar, secretary, LIG Flats Welfare Society.

He added that their area councillor, Sardul Singh Grewal, had got the tubewell sanctioned from the MC four months ago. An estimate was also prepared by the WSSB, which had to install the same, but the MC did not pay the money to the board.

And the work has come to a standstill.

The councillor sent a reminder to the civic body on April 9 also but nobody listened to him.

‘‘Everyday we get water in drops. That too stinks and is yellowish in colour. How are we supposed to make do with it? Is anybody listening?’’ asks Parmar.

The area residents threatened to stage a protest with empty buckets outside the local body office if their grievance was not redressed. Even today, a number of residents, including women, came out on the street to protest against shortage of water. They beat buckets to wake up the authorities.

They say that they have reminded the commissioner a number of times but to no avail. ‘‘If they do not listen, we will have to shake them out of slumber. We only know how we ready our children in the morning without water,’’ said Manjeet Kaur, a resident.



No debate! PU just wants senators’ stamp
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 17
In an attempt to avoid debate and discussions and maybe to curtail the rights of the Senate, Panjab University, Chandigarh, has asked the Senators to express their views on many issues through letters.

The letter issued by PU to the Senators says that if there is no communication by them, it will be considered that the agenda has been approved.

How can we decide on issues without weighing the pros and cons, wonder senators 

By sending a circular to almost 90 Senate members in the state, PU has invited their suggestions on many academic or financial issues by May 25. The letter also says that in case there is no communication by the Senate members, it will be considered that the agenda has been approved.

Through letters to the senators, the university has asked for approval of certain combinations in BA examinations like music vocal with sociology or geography or mathematics etc, introduction of post-MA diploma courses in professional counselling and psychotherapy, introduction of masters in Indian theatre etc.

The letter mentions about several Regulation Amendments also.

Expressing shock over such functioning, a retired principal and a Senate member said for new courses, many things had to be discussed. "Staff budget, posts to be created, overall expenditure, feasibility of starting new courses etc are to be discussed by all, only then a decision can be taken. We are not given even the backgrounders of many proposals. How can we agree on all the issues without weighing the pros and cons? We will definitely convey our resentment on the issue to the university authorities," said the Senate member.

The decision has evoked condemnation by many PU senators, who feel that the Senate is not a stamping body. The meetings of senators were held to discuss various issues and policy matters. The agendas, which had many implications, could never be passed through "remote control".

The members stressed when the VC could convene a Senate meeting anytime, why was he reluctant to do so?

One of the Senate members said that crores of rupees were involved for the smooth working of the university. The budget had to be passed after thorough discussions. "Such a thing has never happened. Sending a note to Senate members will not solve any problem and we do not agree with the university decision. They are avoiding a meeting with the members for no reason. I don't think that the university has any such provision to approve agendas by circulating letters," said the local Senate member. 



Car bazaar sprouts in Sarabha market, residents see red
Kanchan Vasdev
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 17
With the Punjab and Haryana High Court banning the car bazaar from Feroze Gandhi market, here, car dealers have started holding it in the posh Sarabha Nagar area and the residents are seeing red.

The shopkeepers and residents of the area said they had purchased houses and shops in the posh area so that they could live amid peaceful environs.

Earlier, second-hand cars were put on sale on Sundays only but today a car bazaar was organised near Durga Mata Mandir in the residential area. The organisers were playing music very loudly.

This made the residents sick and S.S. Chana, a resident, complained to the police. A team of officials came and the music was switched off.

They, however, could not do anything about the bazaar as they said that the temple authorities had given permission for holding the car market.

Though the land does not belong to the temple as it was earmarked for a park, the residents objected to it. They pleaded that such bazaars disturbed the environment of a residential area.

Some time ago, a signature campaign against the problem was started by the residents and shopkeepers who submitted their complaints with the principal secretary, Local Bodies, city mayor, Nahar Singh Gill and area councillor Amrit Varsha Rampal.

The shopkeepers and residents of the area said they had purchased houses and shops in the posh area so that they could live amid peaceful environs. But the holding of such bazaars was holding all of them to ransom.

‘‘We paid through our nose to buy land to build houses in this locality. If thy have to degrade the environment here also then why did we need to spend so much of money? I am forced to listen to the raunchy music since morning. Is this a way?’’ asked Chana angrily.

Similar problem was marring the environment in Feroze Gandhi market and the traders had knocked at the high court doors. The latter had directed the administration to keep the cars away from the parking lots.

The genesis of this problem is in the inconvenience caused to the visitors and shopkeepers who had spent crores of rupees while buying property in the posh area.

They had been demanding shifting of the car bazaar from the market. They had moved the HC after failing to get any response from the local authorities. 



They stole a luxury car every second day by making copies of coded keys
A family gang of car thieves busted
Jupinderjit Singh
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 17
It was all in the family for this eight-member gang of car thieves, who have allegedly stolen at least 56 luxury cars till date this year only. The police has recovered a list of 56 more cars that they had identified to steal in the next few months. The gang stole a car every second day.

The exploits of the gang are akin to a number of USA-based gangs whose expertise in stealing such a large number of cars had made them the subject of movies like "Gone in 60 Seconds". The police was investigating if the gang was under contract with some national gangsters.

The members are closely related to each other and were well known as the 'Bombay wale' family in Haibowal. They worked in the garb of a 'tiffin-supply' firm.

The high point of the gang, which differentiated them from the routine ones, was that they targeted high-end luxury cars by making copies of the coded keys that are specially designed by the car manufacturers to prevent stealing of the vehicle. The gang has put a new challenge to the car companies to further finetune the security system of the vehicles.

SSP R. K. Jaiswal said the police had nabbed two members of the gang. They are Prabjot Singh, alias Lovely, and Damanveer Singh, alias Sunny. Both are cousins. The absconding members of the gang are brothers Amandeep Singh, alias Billa, and Rattandeep Singh, alias Prince, their cousins Manjit Singh and Harjot Singh, uncle Sarabjit Singh and his son Jaspreet Singh.

The police team led by SP Gurpreet Singh and DSP Jatinder Singh Khaira recovered three Innova cars, two Tata Safaris and a Scorpio. The police recovered Rs 2 lakh from the accused.

Jaiswal said the gang used to sell the car on the original registration number in such a manner that the buyer couldn't make out he was buying a stolen vehicle.

The accused used to first buy an accident damaged car from insurance companies. The stolen and the bought cars were sent outside Punjab where the chassis number and the registration number of the accidental car were replaced on the stolen car.

The gang stole even those cars having special keys laced with a micro-chip containing the special coding by the manufacturing company. They either stole the keys of the car or made a duplicate one and then easily stole the vehicle.

Prabjot was earlier arrested in Dakha. He had stolen a truck trailer from the area.



10 eateries warned against bad food
Our Correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh, May 17
The district health department has warned owners of more than 10 eateries in the area for allegedly showing negligence during preparation, storage and service of food items, contamination of which could cause spread of waterborne diseases. Further action might be initiated after the receipt of results of the examination of samples sealed from these establishments.

Meanwhile, district health officer Dr K.C. Goel has urged the office-bearers of various educational and social organisations to make students and general public aware about the hazards of consuming contaminated food in general and drinks in particular.

Earlier a team led by Goel inspected eateries and vendors at the local town and surrounding areas falling in Sangrur district. The team collected about 10 samples from some establishments. 



Gosain releases 40th issue of magazine
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, May 17
Punjab deputy speaker Satpal Gosain released the 40th issue of the magazine of the Shaheed Memorial Society (SMS) here at a function held in his house today. The society is doing a yeoman service in the field of social service.

Gosain praised the spirit of service present in the members of the society and said, “Today, when everyone is busy in his own affairs and hardly has time for others, the sewa society is doing service to the needy people and organising marriages of girls from poor families who cannot bear the burden of marriages. I bow before the organisation, which is helping the downtrodden. The government will provide all required help to it”.

Varjinder Singh, president of the society, and Radha Krishan said, “We have completed 40 years helping people. We offer our sincere thanks to the media as it has highlighted our work that has encouraged a lot of kind hearted people to come forward and offer their help. We have been helped by philanthropists like Om Parkash Munjal, Satish Jain, Ranjodh Singh, Prof Gurbhajan Gill, Amrish Jain, Dr G.S. Preet, Surjit Singh Minhas, former minister Rakesh Pandey, Hira Singh Gabria, film producer and director Ravi Chopra, Subhash Sagar, principal Harmeet Kaur, Suversha Kalra, Maharaja Tirath Ram, Swami Sumedha Nand and MLA Surinder Bhardwaj”.



Sidhwan is Sukhbir Badal’s political secy
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 17
Paramjit Singh Sidhwan has been appointed political secretary to Sukhbir Badal, acting president of the SAD,

Sidhwan belongs to Sidhwan Khurd village, near Ludhiana. A master’s degree holder in political sciences, he joined the SAD in 1976 during the Emergency days and also spent some time in jail. He also joined the Dharam Yudh Morcha of the party.

However, in 1994 he joined the Lok Bhalai Party of Balwant Singh Ramoowalia. He was considered to be the main architect of the Bhalai Party. Besides being a good orator, he has a deep insight into the Punjab politics.

In 2004, he returned to the SAD and came in close contact with Sukhbir Badal. He was one of the active members of his close circle of people that mobilised the maximum number of youths during the Assembly elections. 



PSEB staff burn chief’s effigy
Our Correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh, May 17
Activists of the Technical Services Union staged a dharna and burnt the effigy of the chairman of the Punjab State Electricity Board to protest against alleged indifferent attitude of the authorities towards the demands of kin of former employees of the department who had lost their lives during service.

The activists demanded that the chairman should be booked for allegedly abeting Balwinder Singh of Amritsar, son of a former employee, to commit suicide about 10 days ago.

Addressing the gathering, Sukhcharanjit Singh, president of the union, alleged that the authorities had been ignoring the interests of the employees.

A large number of dependents of deceased employees of the board resorted to protests at Patiala but the authorities did not clear cases for their employment on compassionate basis.

“Disappointed over the role of chairman Balwainder Singh, a youth of Amritsar took the extreme step of ending his life,” said Sukhcharan Jit Singh, adding that the demonstration was organised to pay tributes to the deceased on his bhog ceremony.



Jagrans and nagar kirtans bring all together: Lakha
Our Correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh, May 17
Thousands of devotees paid obeisance to Lord Rama and Lord Hanuman and listened to the bhajans recited by renowned devotional singers Lakhbir Singh Lakha, Pandit Bhagwan Dixit and their associates at a jagran. This annual jagran was organised by the Shri Bala Ji Trust at MGMN Senior Secondary School, here, last night.

Many among the audience were seen dancing to the devotional songs sung by the singers.

While addressing the gathering during the jagran, Lakha said religious functions were the only occasions where political party leaders interacted with each other irrespective of their political consideration.

“Contrary to a common belief that the religion causes gap among various communities and their leaders, including politicians, the events like jagrans and nagar kirtans bring people from all sections of society closer,” said Lakha.

He pointed out that representatives of Hindu, Sikh and Muslim organisations had come to attend the jagran.



4 marriages solemnised
Our Correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh, May 17
A function was organised under the aegis of Swami Chetanya Ji Trust at Gurdwara Singh Sabha at Brahampur, near here, where four couples from various sections of society tied the nuptial knot.

Jagdish Singh Garcha, former SAD minister, was the chief guest on the occasion.

Besides arranging an elaborate party for the parents of brides and grooms and their guests, the organisers presented gifts to the newlywed couples. The gifts included jewellery, clothes, furniture and cooking gas cylinders.

Bimal Kumar Sharma, president of Shri Ram Mandir, Ravinder Puri, president of Journalists Association, and Jatinder Bhola, president of Municipal Council, were among others who blessed the couples.



NSS camp volunteers do manual work

Ludhiana, May 17
A ten-day NSS Camp being held at Government College for Women, will conclude, here, tomorrow.

Today, the volunteers did manual work. Navnita from the English Department of Khalsa College for Women, delivered a lecture on ‘Personality Development’.

The students took part in different games, organised to educate and entertain them at the same time.

To give boost to the literacy campaign, the volunteers visited the Railway Colony under guidance of the programme officers, Harjeet Kaur, Sukhwinder Kaur and Praveen Sharma. — TNS



1 booked for extorting money from nephew
Mahesh Sharma

Mandi Ahmedgarh, May 17
The local police has booked a farmer, Ekam Singh of Maholi Kalan village in Sangrur district, for allegedly extorting money from his nephew on the pretext of paying bribe to senior revenue officials, including deputy commissioner, Sangrur, assistant sub-registrar and patwari of the area.

According to executive magistrate Mukesh Sharma, Harjit Singh, son of Jasbir Singh of Dilawargarh, had accused his uncle Ekam Singh of extorting Rs 1.05 lakh on pretext of paying bribe to senior revenue functionaries.

Mukesh said when he told Harjit that stamp duty was not required on transfer deeds made by his grandmother, Harjit alleged that his uncle Ekam had demanded Rs 2.5 lakh for paying bribe to get an approval for the transfer deeds of a land.

The main accused, was reported to have slipped after making a written statement before executive magistrate Mukesh Sharma and Sukhdev Singh, SHO. He earlier had admitted to have received Rs 1.05 lakh from his nephew. But he claimed that he had paid Rs 2.5 lakh to Punjab state electricity board official as for paying the amount to certain officials in the department.

Preliminary investigations revealed that Ekam had been looking after affairs of the victim’s family since 1987, when Harjit’s father had died. Harjit’s mother had lost her balance after the death of her husband in an accident. 



Gang of kids loots yarn manufacturer
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 17
The notorious gang of minor children, which targets cars by hurling pebbles at them, has struck again. The modus operandi of the gang is that while a member throws pebbles at a vehicle, forcing the driver to stop and come out of the vehicle, another gang member getting an opportunity picks up money stacked in bags or envelopes in the car.

This time they chose a yarn manufacturer, Sanjeev Kumar and robbed Rs 1.60 lakh from him outside Kansal Hosiery, near Cheema Chowk, today. Sanjeev owns a factory on the Chandigarh road and was visiting Kansal Hosiery for a business related work.

Police sources said Sanjeev’s driver was in the car and the bag containing the money was also in the car. A group of five-six children, around 10 years of age, threw pebbles at his car. The driver got irritated and left the car to shoo them away. But he was shocked to find the bag containing money go missing.

A police team reached the crime site but nothing worthwhile was found. 



Youth club seeks removal of liquor vends
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, May 17
The City Youth Club, Jagraon, today demanded the closure and removal of all liquor vends in the town, which fall within the prohibited area near the places of worship.

Chairman of the club Sanjeev Kumar said the liquor vends were opening within the prohibited area near the places of worship due to the patronage given by the authorities concerned to the liquor mafia. He said a case would be filed in the High Court against the erring officers, who permitted the opening of such liquor vends. The club was in the possession of written instructions issued by the commissioner excise to assistant commissioner, Ludhiana-1, D.K. Verma and the deputy commissioner and these would be produced in the court.

Four booked for bid to murder

The police has booked four persons on the charge of attempt to murder in two incidents. In the first incident, Kulwinder Singh, alias Kinda, and Jaskarandeep Singh, alias Lali of Jandi, allegedly assaulted Varinderpal Singh of their village with ‘gandasi’ and firearms. The duo allegedly fired from a .12 bore DB riffle. The Sidhwan Bet police has registered a case under sections 307, 34, IPC, and under sections 25, 27, 54, 59 of the Arms Act. The injured has been admitted to the Civil Hospital, Jagraon. Some land dispute is said to be the reason behind the incident.

In other incident, Parminderpal Singh and Mohat of Gurunanak Nagar, Jagraon, have been booked for attempt to murder. The duo allegedly assaulted Ramandeep Singh of Kacha Malak, Jagraon. A land dispute is said to be the reason behind the incident. Parminderpal Singh has been arrested while Mohat is absconding. The injured has been admitted to the local Civil Hospital.

Three held for gambling

The local police has arrested Kulwinder Singh, Natha Singh and Jasvir Singh on the charge of gambling. Kulwinder Singh of Jagraon was arrested from the Agwar Gujjran area and Rs 335 was seized from him, whereas Natha Singh of Kothe Khajuran was arrested from Kamal Chowk with Rs 165. Jasvir Singh of Agwar Dalla was arrested from the level crossing and Rs 150 was seized. The police also seized from their possession number slips. Cases under the Gambling Act have been registered.



Wire drawing industry flays rising steel prices
Shveta Pathak
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 17
Emphasising on the need to form a regulatory authority to control the rising steel prices the Wire Drawing Federation of Punjab, in a letter to the Prime Minister, has said rapidly rising steel rates were adversely affecting the steel consuming industry.

Condemning the recent hike by the public sector companies, the federation said the decision was shocking as steel consuming industry was expecting a reduction in the prices as rupee had beefed up. “With this the import of coal and raw materials to these companies would have got cheaper and we were expecting prices to reduce,” the federation stated.

“The Vishakhapatnam plant has put on hold the booking of the wire rods to new SSI units citing scarcity as a reason whereas they have shown 35,000 metric tonne of material as export in the first quarter. Export of raw steel from India should be allowed only after fulfilling domestic requirements and there should be a complete ban on iron ore export,” said the federation general secretary, Badish K.Jindal.

The federation added that bicycle, hand tools and sewing machine industries in Punjab, were already suffering and rise in steel rates had further put a halt in their production.

It said the light engineering industry was a heavy employment generating industry and an adverse impact on this sector could result in unemployment.

Asserting that the situation was getting tougher for steel consuming industries, Jindal said a regulatory authority should take all major decisions pertaining to the steel prices and exports.



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