All eyes on five big fights
Vibhor Mohan
Tribune News Service

Amritsar, July 31
With a total of 405 candidates having filed their nominations for the 65 wards, the stage is set for the forthcoming municipal corporation elections. Even as people are eagerly-awaiting for the final battle, all eyes are on the five high-profile wards from where the heavyweights of Congress and SAD-BJP alliance are contesting.

Ward 50

It’s the ward of BJP’s district president Bakshi Ram Arora. Interestingly, around a dozen other BJP leaders had also applied for the party ticket. Now it remains to be seen if the denial of tickets to them would lead to bad blood among these party leaders and affect Arora’s chance. “All of them are with me, except for Vimal Arora, who is contesting as an independent. The BJP is confident of winning all the 38 seats,” he said. “I have represented this ward from 1997 to 2002. After me no development work took place here. Even work on the road in front of the DAV College, which was left incomplete at that time, could not be resumed in all these years,” he claimed. The grapevine had it that MP Navjot Sidhu and MLA Anil Joshi were keen on Arun Taneja name instead of Arora. However, the district BJP chief managed to have his way. When asked, Arora says he was always the first choice of his party and the entire party leadership had full faith in him. Arora is pitted against Rajiv Duggal of the Congress.

Ward 2

With sitting Congress mayor Sunil Datti contesting from this ward, the hype is but obvious. Datti is upbeat. “The development works taken up during my tenure as mayor are visionary and would help people avail the facilities for many years to come. “During this period, Amritsar bagged the distinction of being the second ultra-modern Inter-State Bus Terminus in the country, second after Dehra Dun. Elevated Road Project has also got underway which would give a boost to the religious tourism in the city,” he claimed. Besides, he added that the Congress has successfully implemented the water supply scheme something that the opposition could not achieve even after sanction of funds. At the local level, the corporation got the nullah (drain) running through the heart of the city covered,” he said. Datti would slug it out with Lovekiranpreet Lalli of the SAD.

Ward 51

Two-time councillor, BJP’s Shwet Malik claims the civil amenities in his area are the best in the city. “During my last two terms, I have ensured that the residents of my ward get every basic facility. Roads have been recarpetted several times, there are sodium lamps at every stretch of road and water supply has also become regular,’ he said. “The people are with us. It can be gauged from the fact that they are turning out in large numbers at our programmes. I’m committed to take the ward further on the road to development,” he said. Malik, who is being touted as a contender for the mayor’s post in wake of BJP sweeping the polls, said the decision is entirely the party leadership’s prerogative. He is faced with Dharamveer Sareen of the Congress.

Ward 12

O.P.Gabbar (Congress), the senior deputy mayor of the last house, is the bigwig from here. “I belong to Vijay Nagar, which falls in this ward. But because the seat was reserved for women candidates, I had to contest from different wards during the last two occasions. Now, I’m back to where I belong. People of the area have great expectations from me and I am committed to meet them. Congress workers are confident that the next mayor would be from our party,” he said. The BJP candidate from the ward is Anuj Sikka.

Ward 29

The district president of Youth Congress Navdeep Goldie is trying his luck in this ward for the first time. “The focus is on local issues including condition of roads and sewerage condition in areas like Inderjeet Colony and Sudarshan Nagar,” he said. Jaskirat Singh is the SAD’s candidate from the ward.

Women power

The BJP and its alliance partner SAD have fielded women candidates at all the 22 wards reserved for women. The details are as follows: Ward 1 (BJP), ward 4 (SAD), ward 7 (BJP), ward 10 (BJP), ward 13 (SAD), ward 16 (SAD), ward 19 (BJP), ward 22 (BJP), ward 22 (BJP), ward 25 (BJP), ward 28 (BJP), ward 31 (SAD), ward 34 (BJP), ward 37 (SAD), ward 40 (SAD), ward 43 (BJP), ward 46 (BJP), ward 49 (BJP) and ward 52 (BJP). They would fight it out with the Congress and CPI alliance.

Smooth conduct

To ensure fair conduct of elections, the state election commissioner today appointed three IAS officers —- Sunil Kumar, Ramesh Kumar Ganta and R.L.Mehta —- as election observers. Deputy commissioner K.S.Pannu who is also the district election officer held a meeting of representatives of Congress, CPI, SAD and BJP. The 12 ROs were also present on the occasion and the code of conduct and other modalities of the election process were discussed in detail.

Ward commotion

There was commotion in ward 29 today when the SAD filed a complaint against Congress candidate from the ward Navdeep Goldie, who is also the district president of Youth Congress, that he had been declared a proclaimed offender in a criminal case registered in 1994. However, the complaint was rejected by officials of the election commission. When contacted, Goldie, said he had been duly grated bail in the case and the complaint was baseless.

Numbers game

According to information available, ward number 56 has the distinction of having highest number of candidates, 15. The scrutiny of nominations is yet to take place. 



Dowry dirt: Woman alleges torture by hubby
P. K. Jaiswar

Amritsar, July 31
Supreme Court’s ruling making it essential for the police to register an FIR on complaints filed by citizens of the country, notwithstanding, local resident Kanwaljit Kaur has been running from pillar to post for lodging complaint under Domestic Violence and Dowry Act against her husband, Inderjit Singh Kaka.

Mother of two, she alleged that she and her parents was being pressurised to reach a compromise with Kaka by the officers of concerned police station. However, Inderjit Kaka, who owns a meat shop refutes the allegations levelled against him. He claimed that he was instrumental settling of his in-laws family. He alleged that his wife had been forcing him to transfer all properties in her name and because he refused to do so, he was being harassed and pressurised by filing wrong complaints against him at the various police stations.

Kanwaljit, in a communiqué to the Chief Minister, Parkash Singh Badal, and district police chief (urban), Kunwar Vijay Partap Singh, alleged that her husband had illicit relations and was threatening to eliminate her for opposing him. Inderjit however denied the allegation.

The woman alleged she had complained to the C-division police station on June 20. Kanwaljit alleged that the police was instead of taking action against the culprit was forcing her to compromise. She said Inderjit had earlier also compromised before the police in which he had promised to desist from such activities and ‘improve’ himself within
a month.

The Apex Court had directed all state governments to issue clear instructions to their police force to make registration of FIRs mandatory.

The police authorities said the matter was with the women cell of the police which was looking into the case. Action would be taken in the case after completion of investigations, according to the police authorities. 



Shaheed Udham Singh statue in dire straits
Body seeks MC permission for maintenance work
Sanjay Bumbroo
Tribune News Service

Amritsar, July 31
The statue of Shaheed Udham Singh is going to the bins. Kamboj Sabha has brought this to the notice of the Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal, chief secretary Punjab, secretary local bodies and municipal corporation commissioner.

The sabha claimed that the polish and the slates at the base of the statue have come off and the area was filled with water and filth as a result of which the whole area was stinking.

Even various political parties have put up banners at the site due to which the statue was not visible 
to the people, said sabha president Harbans Singh Kamboj.

The sabha president in a missive to the Chief Minister, chief secretary Punjab, local bodies secretary and MC commissioner, has urged them to take immediate steps for the upkeep of the monument and grant permission for the maintenance of the martyr’s statue situated at Hall Gate chowk in the holy city.

The members said the pathetic situation prevailing there came to their notice when they had gone to the chowk to pay obeisance to the martyr on Udham Singh’s 81st martyrdom day.

Sabha general secretary Jagjit Singh Kotli said they would soon meet commissioner Hussan Lal in this regard and seek details about the money spent on the upkeep of the monument.

He alleged that a gardener appointed by the authorities was working at the house of a senior officer of the corporation.

The members said if the corporation grants the approval to the sabha for its maintenance they would engage a gardener on permanent basis who would be responsible for maintaining the greenery around the statue.

He said the sabha would also seek views of the experts to install lights near the statue to beautify the area.



This theatre man is on a song
Shivani Mehra

Amritsar, July 31
‘Jattan da munda marassi ban gaya’ said my family when I decided to act. But now they appreciate my decision”, says Kewal Dhaliwal, well-known theatre artiste and director. He is also the president of Manch Rangmanch, an organisation engaged in nurturing budding artists.

There is a secret that most of his students don’t know. Dhaliwal is equally good at humming Punjabi songs. “When my students see me completely engrossed in putting together a play, the last thing that they expect is that I can settle down calmly in a chair to sing for them. I used to sing when I was a student. I even lent my voice in a play named Yahudi ki ladki. My teacher, B.V.Karan, used to call me mahasur as I used to sing very high notes,” he said. Even now he sits to compose music for plays.

“The organisation, Manch-Rangmanch, is a platform for artistes who want to learn and make a career in acting. It conducts seminars, rehearsals, and training. It has all the facilities for the artists who come from other cities and countries and stay here,” says Dhaliwal. Dhaliwal is now a days busier in directing and training budding artists rather than acting himself.

Forty three-years-old Dhaliwal has been associated with Punjabi plays for the past 28 years after doing post graduation from The National School of Drama (with specialisation in direction), 
New Delhi.

“As a kid I was never interested in acting but Suprabha Arya, a teacher at the NSD motivated me to go in this field. It was then that I joined Gurusharan Singh for further training in acting and worked with him for ten years,” he says.

“I never wanted to be in films though my batch mates, now film actor Ashish Vidyarathi, Seema Biswas, Nirmal Pandey, Anup Sone (Kahani ghar ghar ki) and my junior Ashutosh Rana always wanted to be in films. Creativity of a person can only be developed in theatre,” says Dhaliwal.

“I have performed in 2100 Punjabi plays while directing more than 100 full length and 50 one act plays and acting in more than 100 plays,” says Dhaliwal.

Wherever he goes he does his plays in Punjabi only, to spread his mother tongue, says Dhaliwal. Despite its language the play Loona, got a better response in Karnataka than in Amritsar. “Language can not be a bar for an artist,” he believes Dhaliwal who also authored many books on art.



For a clean, green city
P.K. Jaiswar

Amritsar, July 31
“My Mother Most Beautiful”- a non-government organisation dedicated to various issues concerning environment and the holy city - is a one-man initiative, which has turned into a “karvan”.

Initially, the organisation employed about 18 needed and poor youths who worked four to five hours in the morning on daily basis for planting trees and other environmental causes. All expenses of providing them salaries were borne by Dr Sushil Gupta, a medical practitioner in the Rambagh area, whose brainchild is the organisation.

But now many philanthropists have come forward to help Dr Gupta for the cause. However, Dr Gupta has not reduced his own share of contribution to the organisation.

Interestingly, these persons were earlier addicted to intoxicants owing to unemployment and various reasons before they joined My Mother Most Beautiful (M3B). They were brought into the mainstream by making them responsible citizens and bringing them close to the “Mother Nature.”

“It all started about two and half years back from filling a ditch by paying certain amount to a poor person and not waiting for authorities concerned to fill it with earth. Thus the idea generated, which became so successful that Dr Gupta decided it to continue though it cost him Rs 10,000 to 15,000 every month. Started with one man, it has a team of 18 persons who work only four to five hours daily for the cause. Since then it has become a routine for Dr Gupta and his team to dedicate their morning hours to environmental work.

This is not the only case that makes this organisation unique. There is more. Impressed with the idea and work of Dr Gupta, about 150 rickshaw pullers in the city regularly give their monthly share to the organisation for continuing the environmental work. “It is not the money that matters, what matters most is the involvement and participation of the people,” says 
Dr Gupta.

He said he tried to ensure that more and more people made whatever contribution they could for saving environment. He said students and children were least corrupt sections of the society and he made sure that they as well as senior citizens were involved in the cause.

Unlike certain other organisations accusing authorities and pointing fingers at others, Dr Gupta appreciates the authorities for helping him and the organisation by providing all possible help. The organisation believes in the motto “Be strong, desist wrong”. He said the deputy commissioner and other authorities concerned provided all type of help he wanted from them.

The latest project of the M3B is the removal of plastic ropes which got collected on streetlights and electricity poles due to tying of banners on them. Although putting up of hoardings and cross road banners has been banned by the Punjab and Haryana High Court as it becomes a cause of accidents, besides creating “vision pollution,” the rampant violation of the order is going on unchecked thus defacing the city.

When the M3B removed these ropes from poles, the average weight of these waste plastic was 5 km per pole. The team then decided to remove all waste from poles and the M3B collected a record 1,800 kg waste, which is kept in four huge bags in a room of the house of Dr Gupta.

The next project of the organisation is making the city dust-free. The president of the organisation said the soil was precious matter which should be used for good purpose. “We cannot make even a particle of soil by spending crores and crores of rupees. This earth makes our planet so special and worth living. This earthen soil is pure gold and we must learn to make proper use of it,” Dr Gupta said.

The M3B dumped heaps of dust collected alongside roads in gardens and then used the soil for making green patches rather than dumping it outside the city. The M3B educates safai karacharies on saving the invaluable soil by puting it at proper places rather than collecting it on roadsides.

There is a vision about the city in the mind of Dr Gupta and slowly and steadily he is moving forward to bring this vision into reality.

Dr Gupta is writing a book on the city entitled “Making of a city.” He said he wanted to make the holy city a clean, green and an accident-free city and he added if it became successful in Amritsar then it would become in other cities also, the only need was the participation of the people.

Dr Gupta is very optimistic. Expressing his hope, he said there would be a positive change in the next five to six years in the city.

Tree plantation drive

Amritsar, July 31
Mission Aagaaz, an NGO, has initiated a tree plantation project in and around the holy city. For the purpose, it has tied up with the district administration. The campaign started with the plantation of trees near Bharawan Da Dhaba at Town Hall, Gurdwara Saragarhi Sahib and Gurdwara Santokhsar Sahib. Deepak Babbar, director of the NGO said 121 trees were planted on day 1. Vijay Mehra, a consumer forum member was also present on the occasion. Mehra said citizens interested in becoming part of the campaign could contact the NGO on phone numbers 2500598 and 98152-61302.

The members of the NGO also surveyed the nearby area and found running taps and heaps garbage around the localities. “Water is a precious natural resource which should not be wasted,” said Mehra, adding that the administration should take strict action against those who misuse it. — OC



The divisibility factor
Vandana Bansal

Which method will you opt for, when you have to check the divisibility of any number by 9? Will you go for the traditional division method or will you follow some other method? If you don’t know the other easier method, let us learn how the divisibility of any number by 9 can be checked with the help of only the addition-operation.

When you have to check whether any given number is divisible by 9, simply add all the digits of that number. If the sum of all the digits of the given number is equal to 9, that number is divisible by 9 otherwise it is not so.

Let us take some examples to understand this method:

In case you want to find out whether any number say 715661325 can be divided by ‘9’, add all the digits of the number i.e. 7+1+5+6+6+1+3+2+5 =36

Its answer is 36 which is a two digit no. So add all of its digits again i.e. 3+6 =9, the answer will be 9. Because the final sum of all the digits of the given number is 9, so this no. 715661325 is divisible by 9.

To check whether the number 153632 can be divided by 9 or not, add all the digits of the number as -

1+5+3+6+3+2 = 20

= 2+0 =2

Since the addition of these digits does not give ’9’ as the answer, so this number 153632 is not divisible by 9. Similarly divisibility of another large number say 32459887611 by 9 can be tested by adding all of its digits like

3+2+4+5+9+8+8+7+6+1+1 = 54

= 5+4= 9

Final answer 9 helps us in concluding that this number 32459887611 is divisible by 9.

In the same way, the number 2526412 is not divisible by 9 as the sum of digits is not 9.

i.e. 2+5+2+6+4+1+2 = 22

= 2+2 = 4

By adopting this easy addition - operation method, you are in a position to decide whether any given no. can be divided by 9 or not. The specialty of this method is that by using only addition you can find an answer to a problem which otherwise needs division operations. It’s really amazing!




Men should have their fair share at GCW

In the past three or four decades, there has been a major change in the education scenario of the state. Not only the course curriculum and infrastructure but also the student profile has witnessed a makeover. Girls have made deep inroads into the male bastion and occupied majority of seats in all major courses.

It may appear as a healthy sign of a society developing on modern lines. However, it has a flip side too. The shift has resulted in a decrease in the opportunities for men. The colleges which were earlier only meant for boys are no longer their exclusive realm. Boys’ colleges have thrown open admissions for girls in the recent past. And, as if in response, now some girls colleges are contemplating throwing admissions open to boys.

For example, the local Government College for Women (GCW) once justified as a centre of opportunities for girls, invites a review. GCW has a vast campus and plenty of open space for expansion if required. The faculty, once all women, now has a staff which comprises both men and women. The step of making GCW co-ed will not only save a lot of government money, but remove unjustified gender discrimination by the government.

The demand for a boys’ college in Amritsar was long pending as the previous government had floated a proposal to develop a piece of farmland in the suburbs of the city for this purpose and spend a whopping Rs 10 crore to make it a college for boys, but nothing is known about the status of that scheme.

The issue is fast picking up once again particularly when viewed against the zeal with which the present state government wants to promote higher education in Punjab. Given the present state of affairs, the proposal to turn GCW into a co-ed institute seems to be a smart answer to this problem.

— Prof Mohan Singh



HOME PAGE | Punjab | Haryana | Jammu & Kashmir | Himachal Pradesh | Regional Briefs | Nation | Opinions |
| Business | Sports | World | Mailbag | Chandigarh | Ludhiana | Delhi |
| Calendar | Weather | Archive | Subscribe | Suggestion | E-mail |