L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S

3 docs booked for negligence
Tribune News Service

Khanna, August 3
The Khanna police has booked three doctors associated with a private nursing home for causing death due to negligence while treating a patient.

According to SSP Gautam Cheema, the police has arrested Dr Ranjit Singh, owner of Khanna Nursing Home, and Dr Dharampal, while Dr Nitin Aggarwal from Ludhiana is yet to be arrested.

Relatives of the patient, Amarjit Singh of Amloh, who died today following prolonged illness, had alleged that the patient was administered treatment for an aliment that he never suffered from.

Amarjit Singh’s son Babbi claimed that his father had been admitted to the nursing home in April where he was diagnosed with a kidney stone.

He alleged that though his father was suffering from cancer, doctors at the nursing home deliberately diagnosed him wrongly.

He said even after they got a report from a private laboratory in Patiala, which confirmed that Amarjit was suffering from cancer, the doctors at the nursing home continued to treat him for kidney stone, which ultimately led to his death.

Babbi alleged that they were forced to spend lakhs of rupees on his father’s treatment even as he was not being treated for the aliment that endangered his life.

Babbi claimed that doctors at the nursing home even operated upon his father to remove the kidney stone and during the operation they slashed his small intestine, which rendered him inept to digest food.

However, Dr Ranjit Singh, owner of the nursing home, claimed that the doctors had diagnosed the patient correctly, as he had several stones in his kidney.

He refused to acknowledge the test reports produced by Amarjit’s relatives.

The SSP said the police had sought a report from the IMA and the PGI, Chandigarh, to ascertain the negligence on part of the doctors.

He said the doctors accused had been booked by the police under Sections 269, 338 and 304 (A) of the IPC.



Conceived by one, delivered by another
Vimal Sumbly
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 3
It is an irony that the projects conceptualised and approved during the Congress regime are now being “sold” by the SAD-BJP alliance to the electorate.

A little procedural delay during the previous regime in implementation and execution of such projects has placed the Congress in a relatively disadvantageous position.

On May 18, a tripartite memorandum of understanding (MoU) was signed between the central government, the state government and the municipal corporation for Ludhaina under the Jawahar Lal Nehru Urban Renewal Mission (JLNURM).

The Rs 4,000-crore project envisages total revamp of city’s development, particularly in civic matters.

The SAD has already started seeking votes on the issue and included the project in its election agenda.

However, the fact remains that the project was announced by Prime Minister Manmohan Singh during his visit to the city in 2005 when he had come to inaugurate a hospital here.

On the same day, while addressing a meeting organised by the district Congress committee, the Prime Minister had said Ludhiana was being included in JLNURM.

Somehow, the state government could not submit the plan Conceived by one, delivered by another in time and ultimately it was the SAD government that signed the MOU with the Government of India.

Congress legislative party leader Rajinder Kaur Bhattal ridiculed the SAD claims on the project.

Bhattal who was here today, told Ludhiana Tribune: “The Akalis should be ashamed of such claims as everybody knows who brought this project.”

She said this was reflective of the ideological bankruptcy of the SAD-BJP alliance, which could not think of anything of their own, and were now trying to take credit for the projects brought in by the Congress regime.

On the failure of the previous government in executing the MoU on time, she said it was a long procedure and took time.

She said the procedure was almost completed during the previous regime, hence the MoU was executed in May.

“Do you think the Akalis waved some magical wand to speed up the project?”

However, Harish Rai Dhanda, chief parliamentary secretary, department of local bodies, which would execute the project, said: “It was not just a coincidence that the MoU was signed in May.”He claimed that Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal had pursued the project with the centre. “Otherwise this project would never have seen the light of the day,” he claimed.

He observed: “Conceiving a project is no big deal, but what matters is its implementation and timely delivery.”

He asserted: “Now you see how fast the projects, including this one (JLNURM), will be executed without any excuses for delay.”



Strike paralyses panchayat dept working
Amarjit Thind
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 3
Agitations are a peaceful way to express ones resentment in a democracy, but what about the suffering of the people at large.

A case in point is the ongoing strike by employees of the Rural Development and Panchayat Department which entered its tenth day today. The officials are protesting against the failure of the police to arrest the accused involved in assaulting DDPO Ranbir Singh Mudhal in Dera Baba Nanak on July 21.

The fallout of the strike is that routine functioning at all 12 blocks of the department in the district, including the Zila Parishad, is at a standstill. With all employees staging a pen down strike, people with important work are forced to return empty handed. Hundreds of people visit the offices at Ludhiana 1and II, Raikot, Sudhar, Doraha, Khanna, Machhiwara, Sidhwan, Jagraon, Pakhowal and Dehlon everyday only to be turned back.

The worst affected are those who have come to get the births and deaths of their near and dear ones registered. Similar is the case with those who throng the offices for widow and old-age pension. The release of grants for various ongoing developmental works too has come to a standstill since no money is being released by the department.

The work of cross-checking of voter lists which was entrusted to the department by the state election commission is also not being carried out. The commission had directed the officials of the department to ensure checking of the photos printed on the voter lists from July 15 to August 15.

In addition to this, the work of the recruitment of teachers, veterinary officers and doctors for the rural sector too has come to a standstill. .

The protesters said they were aware of the problems being faced by the people but there could be no compromise at the cost of self respect. They said they would continue with the strike till justice was done.

Meanwhile, for hundreds of people waiting to get their work done, there’s no option but to wait. 



Bhattal steps in, targets atta-dal
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 3
Congress legislative party leader Rajinder Kaur Bhattal today ridiculed the ruling SAD-BJP alliance for trying to claim the credit for various projects that were brought in by the previous Congress government.

Bhattal who joined the party’s campaign for the election to the municipal corporation here today, said the alliance had failed on all fronts.

She claimed that they were “totally dumfounded as they did not know what to do”.

She asserted that the Congress was all set to sweep the civic body elections across the state and that would mark the beginning of the end for the government.

She pointed out that the SAD-BJP alliance that had got the votes in the name of “Atta-dal” scheme had failed to fulfil its promise.

She observed that the alliance had held the elections to the local bodies deliberately ahead of August 15, the deadline for providing subsidised “Atta-dal” to the poor, as it knew it could not fulfil its promise. She said the alliance “stood exposed” before the masses and it was all set to get a drubbing in the elections.

Accompanied by former ministers Surinder Singla, Harnam Dass Johar and Rakesh From page 1

Pandey, legislators Jassi Khangura and Harmohinder Singh Pradhan, besides former legislator Milkiat Singh Dakha, and District Congress Committee president Jagmohan Sharma, Bhattal went around several wards appealing to people to vote for the party.

“Make a fair and judicious choice,” she urged people, while adding that they must be able to appreciate the work the party had done during the past five years.

Bhattal had to face some uncomfortable questions as well. When asked as to why the Congress did not field its candidate from ward No. 72, from where senior Akali leader Hakim Singh Giaspora got elected unopposed, she said she had received some representations and she would look into the matter.

She observed that the Congress should have fielded a candidate there, particularly when there were so many aspirants waiting for the ticket.

When asked about the campaign by some “tainted” leaders, she remarked that there was nobody tainted in the Congress, but there were certainly a number of such leaders among the Akalis.

The leader also sought to play down the issue of rebels. She said such candidates were in every party and did not make much difference anywhere. She pointed out that there were so many candidates for one ward and it was not possible to accommodate everybody.

She said that most of the party workers had gracefully accepted the party decision and had been working for the official candidates.



Ward Watch 14
Nahar fortunes shifty
Vimal Sumbly
Tribune News Service

Prem Sagar Aggarwal
Prem Sagar Aggarwal

Ludhiana, August 3
As a mayor, Nahar Singh Gill had a mixed record. Placed against a commissioner who followed his own course, things were never that easy for him in spite of the Congress government being in the saddle and him being close to Amarinder Singh.

Had he been as effective as he was accessible, things would have been far better.                                             

Although he enjoyed a lot of goodwill in his ward (No. 18), his shifting to ward No. 14 has given his opponents a good issue to harp on.

Gill maintains that he had to shift to ward No. 14 since his native village Sherpur fell in the same ward after the fresh delimitation of wards.

He said: “Mere moving from one ward to another does not mean I have ceased all my relations with those people (of ward No. 18), most of whom are now in ward No. 14.”

About his achievements, he remarked: “It is for everybody to see.” He said he not only ensured the development of his ward, but that of the entire city as mayor. In spite of difficulties, he tried to ensure equitable development of each ward, he remarked.

He said the supply of drinking water to 100 per cent population of the city was brought about during his regime and the scheme was launched by Amarinder Singh from his ward.

There is resentment among some party workers and supporters of former councillor Kanwardeep Singh Pappi from this ward. His nomination papers were rejected.

He had been alleging that his papers were rejected at the behest of Gill. Pappi’s wife Ravinder Kaur was the sitting Congress councillor from this ward.

Pappi had applied for the party nomination from here, which was rejected following which he decided to contest as an Independent.

Gill’s main rival Prem Sagar Aggarwal of the Nahar fortunes shifty

Akali-BJP alliance has been using this as his poll plank against Gill. Aggarwal said: “Like he deserted the residents of ward No. 18, who elected him and paved the way for his becoming the mayor, next time he will do the same with the people of ward No. 14.”

His criticism notwithstanding, Aggarwal appears to be comparatively on a weak wicket, given the presence of Parshotam Mittal, a BJP rebel, in the fray.

Mittal might cut a good chunk of votes of the BJP but Aggarwal asserts that the party rank and file was with him.

“Ours is a disciplined cadre and they go by the party decision,” he said.



Man awaits financial help for surgery
Kanchan Vasdev
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 3
Karan, aged 22 is faced with the unhappy prospect of undergoing a surgery to amputate his arm. Also, his financial condition is not good enough for him to be able to afford the surgery and post-operative care which will cost Rs 2 lakh.

Karan had come to Ludhiana in search of greener pastures from Sirsa. He started working with Chahal Cold Storage situated on Jalandhar bypass. On June 17, when he was trying to cover with tarpaulin, a truck which he had loaded, his arm hit high tension electricity cables.

He fell on the ground and he sustained a head injury and severe burns on his arms and face. He was rushed to the Christian Medical College and Hospital (CMCH) by the owner of the storage, Suresh Kumar, who promised him money for the treatment.

However, later, he did not help Karan.

Karan is admitted in CMCH where Dr Vijay Obed and Dr Deepak Bhatti are treating him. The doctors said that his head injury had healed but his arm had got infected. They feared that the arm would have to be amputated in case it did not heal.

Karan's father, Mahipal, a worker in Sirsa said that as he had been attending to his son for the last two months and had not been able to work and earn. He now owed Rs 1.5 lakh to CMCH for treatment. Doctors say he would have to pay even more than that if he had to undergo amputation.

Mahipal said Karan's employers had agreed to help him in getting treatment. “He had told us not to go to police after the incident. So we did not do anything. But now he has not even come to see my son who is admitted in the hospital.”



Makkar’s son using SGPC vehicles: Cong
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 3
Congress candidate from Ward 48 Surinderpal Singh Bindra today accused his main rival, Manvinderpal Singh Makkar, son of SGPC president Avtar Singh Makkar, of misusing SGPC vehicles and deploying sewadars on election work.

Bindra alleged that the sewadars on SGPC vehicles had torn his posters and also those of rebel BJP and Akali candidates Vivek Jindal and Gurpreet Singh, respectively. He said, they had submitted a complaint to the election authorities, seeking that he be disqualified.

The SGPC president, Avtar Singh Makkar, denied the allegations.He said the Congress candidate was frustrated as he feared defeat. "Why should I use the SGPC men and machinery? There is no dearth of Akali workers,” he asked.



BJP expels 3 rebels
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 3
Bharatiya Janata Party today expelled three party men who had refused to withdraw their nomination papers in support of the SAD-BJP alliance candidates. Those expelled include Parshotam Mittal from Ward 14, Bharat Bhushan Sharma from Ward 34 and Rakesh Vohra from Ward 21. They have been expelled from the primary membership of the party for six years.

Party spokesman Rajinder Khatri said that the decision to this effect was taken at a meeting presided over by party’s district president Dr Subash Verma. The party has asked its workers to ensure that they worked for the alliance candidates only.



Aggarwal community to support SAD-BJP
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, August 3
The Punjab Pardesh Aggarwal Sammelan today made an appeal to the Aggarwal community to cast votes in favour of the SAD-BJP candidates during the municipal elections.

In a statement here today, Amrit Lal Aggarwal and Surinder Kumar Gupta, president and general secretary, respectively, of the body, urged the people to defeat the Congress.

“During the previous Congress regime, the condition of these cities has not improved even a bit while development work was not carried out as per the requirement of the people,” they said.

During the sammelan, it was decided that office-bearers of the organisation would visit cities to mobilise support for the SAD-BJP candidates.



Notices to employees
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 3
Taking a serious view of the absence of some polling staff from the MC polls rehearsal of August 2, district electoral officer-cum-deputy commissioner Priyank Bharti has issued notices under Section 134 of Representation of the Punjab State Election Commission Act, 1994, here today. He has directed them to explain the reason for remaining absent before 5 pm.



Khanna police to start de-addiction centres
Our Correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh, August 3
The Khanna police has decided to start drug de-addiction centres at Khanna and Samrala.

Terming drug addiction to be responsible for genesis of all types of social evils, Khanna SSP Gautam Cheema said the drive launched against the drug menace recently had received an overwhelming response from all sections of society. Taking this response into account the authorities have decided to open two drug de-addiction centres.

“Not only have the people appreciated the initiative taken by the department, they have also come forward to contribute in controlling the evil. Promptness and sincerity of rank and file in our department enabled us to crack the nexus of illegal traders and drug peddlers,” claimed Gautam adding office-bearers of various social and religious organisations had suggested that a drug de-addiction programme be started in consultation with health authorities.

Cheema disclosed that two de-addiction centres would be opened at the civil hospitals at Khanna and Samrala soon. Besides undertaking therapeutic procedure for weaning the victims away from various addictions including opium, poppy husk, narcotics and psychotropic drugs, the experts would take the help of counsellors also.

“Besides giving medical treatment to the addicts we will also chalk out a programme for their rehabilitation,” said Cheema while maintaining that the effort would save victims from exploitation on the hands of quacks.

He said the police personnel had delivered on their promise to fight the menace. 



Close shave for 60 in pileup
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 3
Around 60 persons travelling in four vehicles, including three cars and a bus, had a providential escape when their vehicles were involved in a pileup, after a truck they were tailing came to a grinding halt on the national highway, near Dhandari, this afternoon.

Eyewitnesses said the truck driver applied brakes suddenly. The truck was being followed by a Verna car with four passengers, an Amritsar-Delhi Punjab Roadways bus with 52 passengers, an Indica car with a driver and another car with three members of a family.

It was a miraculous escape for a Jalandhar-based family of four travelling in the Verna car.

Their car was sandwiched between the truck and the bus. The family members managed to come out of the car unhurt.

For the driver of Indica car that was following the bus, it was a close call as well. The driver, Venus Goel, who was heading to Delhi Airport to see off his relatives, said he could sense everything going out of his hands.

“The vehicles ahead braked hard and nobody on the road could anticipate what was happening. We can only thank God for saving us. It could have been far worse,” he said.

The owner of the car, Parminder Singh, also escaped unhurt.

The three passengers of the fourth vehicle, which was the last one to collide, also came out of the car safely.

Om Prakesh, the driver of the car, said everything was so sudden that he had no time to react.



Responsible citizens needed

Residents of Ludhiana face problems on the roads, in residential areas and government offices. Have we ever thought about who is responsible for this? We want readymade solutions from the government or from nature without giving back anything positive to our surroundings. We clean our houses and litter outdoors. When Municipal Corporation plants trees, we do not help in maintaining them.

We do not respect traffic rules, signals or speed limits. We do not slow down for even senior citizens crossing roads and try to get past them by honking horns.

We pass the buck to those governing the city for every problem we face. The media helps us by raising issues that concern us but follow-ups and citizens’ cooperation are also needed to get the desired results.

Garish Gupta, Ludhiana

Readers are invited to mail letters (not more than 200 words) at "ludhiana@tribunemail.com" or post the same to The Tribune, 1, 2 Improvement Trust Building, Badaur House, Clock Tower, Ludhiana.



4 held, poppy husk seized
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, August 3
Incharge of Narcotics Cell Ludhiana (Rural) today claimed to have recovered 51 bags of poppy husk from two trucks and arrested four persons in this connection. According to a press note released here today by SSP, District Police, Ludhiana (Rural), Gurpreet Singh Bhullar stated that a police party, under the supervision of SP (D) Ashok Baath, headed by incharge (narcotics cell) inspector Amarjit Singh was present at T-point Nanaksar on Moga- Jagraon G.T. Road when information was received regarding some persons bringing large amounts of poppy husk in trucks.

The police party recovered 51 bags containing 2,040 kg of poppy husk from truck bearing registration number PB-29A-9884 valuing Rs 13,77,000 whereas the other truck was empty.

After interrogation it was found that the narcotics were purchased from one Naresh Kumar, a contractor from Kishangarh (Rajasthan), at Rs 13,000 per bag.



Student crushed to death
Our Correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh, August 3
A class XI student of a local school was killed and another injured when a speeding truck ran over the two while saving a group of pilgrims at the Jagera bridge, near here, this morning.

The students were waiting for their mates near a police post.

The Payal police impounded the vehicle and booked the driver under Sections 304 A, 279, 337 and 427 of the IPC. However, the accused fled the scene.

Ravi Kumar, son of Satish Kumar, a class XI student of Guru Har Gobind Khalsa Senior Secondary School, was crushed to death when he along with classmate Prabhjot Singh, son of Jaswinder Singh of Jagera village, was hit by a speeding truck (PJP 5617). Timely help from passersby saved the life of Prabhjot Singh.

Sources at the Sihar police chowki said the accident took place due to the alleged negligence of the driver, later identified as Santokh Singh, son of Darshan Singh of Aakalana village, near Balachaur.

The truck was going from Ludhiana to Malerkotla.

The accident occurred when a group of pilgrims coming from Naina Devi came onto the main road and the driver lost control of the vehicle, hitting a police post.

Ravi and Prabhjot were run over and the former succumbed to his injuries on the way to a private hospital at Pohir village.



Bus overturned, one killed
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, August 3
One person was killed and 20 were injured when a bus of Rishab Spinning Mill, Jodhan, overturned today.

The bus daily carries female employees of the mill from different villages. At the time of accident, nearly 40 persons were travelling.

Conductor Virinder Pal Singh of Pakhowal died on the spot.

The injured were taken to the civil hospital where Prabhjot Kaur of Dalla, Amanjit Kaur and Inderjit Kaur of Daudhar and Swaranjit Kaur of Buttar Kalan were referred to a hospital in Ludhiana. They got head injuries.



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