L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S



RDX Case
Neighbours just can’t believe it
He was gentle, soft-spoken, they say
Jupinderjit Singh
Tribune News Service

Mullanpur Dakha, September 2
An isolated house on the Jangpur road near the popular Lal Kothi remained the focus of attention throughout the day today with the police laying a seize to it. It was the house where Gurpreet Singh, from whose car a huge quantity of RDX was allegedly recovered, used to live.

Most of his neighbours were in a state of shock and they requested visiting mediapersons for more “details.” They could not believe that a “ terrorist” lived close- by. They said the youth had returned from a foreign country only a week ago.

His mother and younger sister were said to be detained inside the house. Some residents of Rurka, native village of the accused, were also inside the house, answering queries about the family.

Gurpreet was described as a soft-spoken youth, who did not hit back even when beaten up in school and college. He kept to himself and rarely shared his feelings with anyone, his neighbours said.

An undergraduate, he earned a living by working as an iron-smith.

“He was harmless. I am bewildered at the news of his involvement,”said one of them. Residents of Rurka village, who did not want to be identified, talked about the pending cases against Tarlok Singh, father of Gurpreet.

The cops had been camping in the area since last night. No one was allowed inside the house. 

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1 killed, 2 hurt in roof collapse
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 2
One labourer was killed and two were injured when the roof of an under-renovation house near Arti Chowk collapsed this evening.

A labourer, Des Raj (20), was buried under the debris. Two other labourers Ram Chander and Surinder suffered injuries after they jumped from the roof to save their lives. They told the police that they were breaking the roof when it started crumbling. “We jumped on one side while Des Raj jumped in the opposite direction. The roof fell on him.”

The police has initiated investigation under Section 174 of the CrPc.

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Servant drugs family, walks away with booty
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 2
In yet another case of a domestic help turning into a thief, a migrant from Nepal, employed as a servant with a family in civil lines, allegedly administered drug-mixed juice to the members of the family and decamped with cash and jewellery worth lakhs.aThe servant Raju also took away a.32 bore pistol of the victim couple Vivek Gupta and his wife. The incident took place on August 31 late in night.

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Processions add to chaos
Vimal Sumbly
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 2
The city has seen an unprecedented upsurge in holding of religious processions. As if the vehicular congestion was not enough, these processions further complicate the problem bringing traffic in most part of the city to a virtual halt. Given the show of strength sought to be displayed during the processions, these seem to being organised more for competitive reasons than for any sacred belief.

On an average every month there are couple of shobha yatras, rath yatras, nagar kirtans and jhankis. Nobody dares to raise any questions about these processions. These are taken out without any prior permission from the administration. And the police comes to know about it once these lead to traffic zams.

Residents of the city have always raised their objections against these processions also. People protest for a while, but nobody pursues it for long.

There seems to be no way out either. Samir Kaushal, a young professional said, almost every fortnight the city roads are held to ransom and people get stuck for hours. He pointed out, even the traffic cops cannot do anything about it. Hundreds of litres of fuel is wasted on the roads. “But whom to complain to?”, he asked, while trying to articulate the frustration of people trapped on the roads. He said: “You are taken off guard on the road and you have no option but to retreat”.

There appears to be competition also among the managements of various temples and gurdwaras for organising better processions than others. It is not just “inter-communal” but even “intra-communal” as well.

Earlier, there were suggestions that the district administration must ban such processions on the busy roads. There should be a common venue for holding such processions on the city outskirts lest it create havoc on the roads. Sometimes people have to spend hours for a journey that should take a few minutes only.

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MC honours Asian champ Raj Kumar
Our Sports Reporter

Ludhiana, September 2
Raj Kumar, who won mixed doubles title (pairing with Prajkata Sawant of Maharashtra) in the Asian Youth Badminton under-16 Championship held recently in Hanoi, Vietnam, was honoured by the municipal corporation, Ludhiana, and the Ludhiana Badminton Academy (LBA) here yesterday. The function was organised in the lawns, in front of the Shastri Hall near Guru Nanak Stadium where Harish Rai Dhanda, chief parlimentary secretary, Punjab, and Vikas Partap, commisioner, municipal corporation, were the chief guests.aDetails on page 3

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Mayor’s Selection
Wait and watch, says Badal
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 2
Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal has left the choice of Ludhiana mayor to God. That is what he told reporters at a press conference on the sidelines of a function marking the inauguration of the “Earth Exhibition”. He remained at his evasive best.

When asked who was going to be appointed mayor, Badal remarked, “Jinnu Rabb chahay (whomsoever God wills)”.

Given the intense polarisation in the local unit of the SAD over the appointment of mayor, the reporters insisted on Badal’s comment. He also had a look at minister for tourism and jails Hira Singh Gabria, who was sitting besides him, with a smile while asking everybody to wait and mayor would be appointed at the right time.

Badal even tried to deviate on the question regarding the appointment of mayor saying that his party had no differences with the BJP. When it was pointed out to him that there was no dispute with the BJP since mayor was to be picked from the SAD only and the problem was within the party, Badal remarked jokingly: “When you try to corner me, I have to take diversions”.

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Punjab could go barren, warns CM
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 2
Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal today sought public cooperation for preserving and safeguarding the environment and natural resources.

He said it was everybody's duty towards the future generations to bequeath to them a healthy and clean environment, besides ensuring abundance of natural resources.

Addressing a function after inaugurating an environmental exhibition "Seeds of Change: The Earth Charter and Human Potential" at Punjab Agricultural University here today, Badal observed that everything must not be left to the state, as each individual can contribute in his own way and can make a great difference.

He cited the examples of Rajinder Singh, an environmentalist, whose efforts led to successful rainwater harvesting in barren lands of Rajasthan. Similarly, he pointed out that the Nobel laureate Wangari Maathai made immense contribution towards afforestation in Kenya, where 20 million trees were planted by people after seeking inspiration from her.

The Chief Minister emphasised the need of sustained development which must not be at the cost of environment and the natural resources. He pointed out that the way water resources were being exploited in the state, Punjab could even go barren in a very short period of time.

The exhibition is being organised jointly by Bharat Soka Gakkai (BSG), the Indian arm of the Soka Gakkai International in collaboration with UNESCO. The PAU is co-organising the event. Since its debut in Johannesburg in 2002, “Seeds of Change” has toured several cities across the globe and attracted thousands of viewers.

In his presidential address, PAU vice-chancellor M.S. Kang emphasised that the individuals can certainly make great differences. He said environment was one of the major issues that needed to be address and the PAU felt privileged to host this exhibition.

According to Geeta Bector, the local coordinator of the BSG, the exhibition seeks to assert "no matter how complex global problems may seem, it is ourselves who have given rise to them.

They cannot be beyond our power to resolve". Initially created by the SGI and the Earth Charter Initiative for the World Summit on Sustainable Development (WSSD) in Johannesburg, the updated exhibition links panels on the state of the world with a message about the potential of even one individual to make a positive change.

She said it is structured around the Earth charter - a declaration of ethical principles for building a just, sustainable and peaceful society - and presents the charter as a tool for understanding and achieving the vision of a sustainable world.

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Ludhiana Calling

The large ground behind the mini-secretariat used as parking space for the district court complex has not been metalled for the last many years. During rainy season, the mud ground turns into a slush field. Vehicles get stained badly or get stuck in the muddle. The lawyers have asked the administration umpteen times to metal the ground but no one seems to be listening. It seems the government would act only when the car of a VIP would be stuck there.

CM’s faux pas

Politicians do not leave any podium without bragging about their knowledge of worldly affairs. Yet, many times leaders, in their zeal to impress the audience, only cause embarrassment. CM Badal, while hailing environmentalists, repeatedly mentioned the contribution of a Nobel laureate "Man" from Kenya for planting thousands of trees. No one could stop the CM midway that the person was actually a woman, named Wangari Maathai.

Talent waste

One hopes for resurgence of Indian sports following the success of two movies "Apne" and "Chak De….." with sports as themes. However, when one sees children of nomads or Bazigaars performing well-nigh impossible acrobats, one wonders if world-beater gymnasts in them are wasting talent to earn bread and butter only.

Media-shy cop

A media-shy cop was quite happy at a case moved before the Punjab Human Rights Commission seeking ban on police press conferences where accused were paraded before the media. This cop rarely called press conferences for boasting the nabbing of a criminal. Even when senior officials organised one for his success, the camera-shy officer preferred staying away from the flashes. "Now, I would be spared completely." He said while ridiculing those who went before the media after catching a petty criminal also.

Tailpiece

Printers devil played truant with a newspaper once again and the victim was a local therapist. In a news related to him, the devil separated the word into two, changing Therapist into The rapist!

— Sentinel

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DSP to be honoured posthumously
Our Correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh, September 2
In recognition of his outstanding services to society and diligent service in the police, social organisations of the local town and surrounding villages have decided to honour Virender Singh, DSP, Payal, posthumously. Singh had died in a road accident, near Bathinda,on August 28.

Referring to the decision taken at a meeting, at the Municipal Children Park today, Ravinder Puri, Journalists Association president, and Jatinder Bhola, Municipal Council president, said late Singh, brother of Rattan Singh Brar would be felicitated on behalf of residents of the area.

Singh besides performing his duty diligently was associated with a number of social organisations of the area.

A number of senior police officials mourned the death of the cop. Gautam Cheema, SSP, Khanna, Gurpreet Singh Bhullar, SSP Ludhiana (rural), R K Jaiswal, SSP, Ludhiana, Gursharan Singh Bedi, DSP, Khanna and Jagdish Singh Garcha, former minister, expressed grief on his death.

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BOB celebrates its centenary

Ludhiana, September 2
The Bank of Baroda celebrated it’s 100 years of foundation at the Sri Bhaini Sahib here yesterday .The main feature of the function was the organisation of the credit camp. The function was attended by RK Lakhanpal, deputy general manager, Chandigarh region.

Lakhanpal welcomed all the persons at the camp and assured the farmers and traders of efficient customer services and said they will be provided with highest services. The sarpanch of Bhaini Sahib, Rajinder Kaur, appreciated the services of BOB in the village. — OC

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Spiritual healing helps achieve ‘peace of mind’
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, September 2
A public health lecture on “Natural Healing and Spiritual Counselling” was delivered by advanced clinical hypnotherapist and aura specialist J. Lal at Dumra Auditorium in Dayanand Medical College and Hospital (DMCH) yesterday. The lecture was organised under the aegis of the health education cell of the DMCH.

Dr Lal said application of natural therapies, based on scientific approach, had been in use by the mankind since times immemorial. Spiritual healing helped a lot in relieving pain and mental worries and enabled to achieve peace of mind.

Focusing on the “aura therapy”, Dr Lal said everything in the universe, including thoughts and consciousness of the human beings, seemed to radiate energy and the display of this radiation pattern was called “aura”. This aura in human beings was the energy field that surrounded the physical body. It was also called magnetic energy or electro-magnetic energy.

He said the physical, emotional, mental and spiritual aspects of an individual could be easily judged by aura therapists.

Regarding spiritual therapies, he stated that by inculcating spirit of spiritualism and faith in one's personality, a person could channelise the deviated energies back on the right track. “The best way to control life by a man is to control his choice of words and thoughts. All this can be achieved better by practising the art of relaxation and concentration, and for which, the help of music and mantras can be taken. Other alternative therapies, including yoga and meditation, also help in restoring good health and having a sound mind and body.”

During the lecture, a few relaxation and mediation exercises were demonstrated.

Convener of the cell Rajoo Singh Chhina acknowledged the importance of organising such public health lectures at regular intervals to create health awareness among the masses. He said most of the ailments could be cured faster and in a better manner if the patient retained a better frame of mind and got rid of negative and depressing emotions by inculcating positive attitudes.

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At The Crossroads
Growth of a poetic mind

Recalling the old days is the pastime of old persons and I indulge in this luxury off and on. The other day Bharat Bhushan informed me on the telephone that he was retiring on the last day of the current month. This information jolted me back forty years when he was studying for his first degree at Brijindra College, Faridkot. He used to commute daily by train from Jaito. I fancy even today a slim and trim pop-eyed boy, with inquisitive mind and suave demeanour.

In the classroom, he would stand up if a point was not clear to him. But, more often, he would be following me when the period was over, with a copybook in his hand. He would look into the copybook and pose me certain questions. Even at that time I could visualise that he was cut out for a higher position in life. Starting as a college lecturer in English, he entered the Punjab Civil Service shortly afterwards. His retirement as assistant excise and taxation commissioner at Ludhiana is of course a feather in 
his cap.

But he is yet to realise his dream of being a poet in his own right. He has not been unduly ambitious in this regard throughout his life. He believes in the dictum - Slow and steady wins the race. Earlier, he composed poems in English and was published in literary journals like Youth Times. Later he turned to his mother tongue, Punjabi, and published a collection of poems ‘Meel Pathar’ (milestone) way back in 1994.

This collection was well received in literary circles, but on his part he was not fully satisfied with his output.

Undoubtedly, he has arrived on the literary scene with his second collection of Punjabi poems entitled, ‘Supneyan da Safar’ (The Journey of Dreams), published recently. His poems mark the growth of a mind bent upon understanding the mystery of life. Starting with recording impressions, he has reached the stage when the sensibilities fall easily into the pattern of sense. In the poem ‘Jugn’' (glow-worm), he says -

You, a mere piece of wax,

your life a long journey of inexplicable pain.

You stepped into old age

direct from childhood

and carried all the burden

on your back.

Indeed you covered a long distance

during pitch dark nights

in the hope of

a pleasant morning.

Bharat Bhushan has been influenced, among others, by the writings of Kahlil Jibran, who had been immersed in deep mystical thoughts and soared high on the wings of poesy. Not rhyme but rhythm has guided his poetic expression. No backward glance but looking ahead for a gleam in the misty horizon. There has been no respite for the restless soul in quest of meaning in the labyrinth of absurd reasoning. No regrets, nor is there any grumble for the lost love. In ‘Khamosh Geet’ (Silent Song), he says -

Whenever I see a woman

embellished gracefully in finery

my mind visualises the time

when autumn prevailed all around.

In such dismal surroundings,

tattered clothes and days of starvation,

your visit created sensations

like a melody, mute and muffled.

But, I grieved intensely for long

in the valley of devastation

and desolation.

Not words but long silences are the leitmotif of Bharat Bhushan’s poems. The spaces between his unsaid words are eloquent. He wants to convey the inner void in the language of pauses. He can never be vociferous under the stress of feelings and intensity of emotions. Not the sound but its echo in the wilderness of yearnings lends meaning to his poetic expressions. He is not after the imps of joys and delights but is in tune with the symphony of mind’s glorious moments of beatitude.

— N.S. Tasneem

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Army team visits institute for recruitment
Our Correspondent

Doraha, September 2
A team of the Indian Army came for recruitment under the programme,”17th University Entry Scheme as Officers for the Corps of Engineering, Signals & EME” at the Bhutta College For Engineering today.

Brig S.K.Pillai headed the four-member team. Other members of the team were Col. A.K. Mukherjee, Lt. Col. Ashok Kumar, Major Anshuman Chowdhary and Hav. /P.A Harpreet Singh. The team shortlisted 45 students.

Brig. S.K. Pillai, Chief Signal Officer, who is a postgraduate in the ECE from the IIT Madras, interacted with students.

He also visited the laboratories and appreciated the library facilities provided to students in this rural institute.

He also appreciated the infrastructure available and was pleased at the facilities being provided to the students.

Dr S.D. Khepar, director of the BCET, said it was a great privilege for the students to join the Army and serve the motherland.

He also lauded the efforts of the placement cell for making the event a great success.

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Short-circuit sets off bank alarm

Mandi Ahmedgarh, September 2
After getting alerted from the burglar alarm at the local branch of Punjab National Bank, cops of the Sangrur police rushed towards the bank premises here today. However, they were relieved when it was found that a short-circuit had caused the alarm.

It was at about 12.10 p.m. that the burglar siren of the local branch of the PNB started ringing, which caused panic among residents of the Railway Road area and Grain Market Area. Automation programmes fed in the software of the bank, besides informing bank officials, alerted officials at the local police station and subdivision level. While it took some time for the bank officials to reach the branch, policemen reached there to find locks of the main gate intact. They got the locks opened to check if anybody was present in the branch. — OC

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  Mukesh remembered
Our Correspondent

Chandigarh, September 2
"Jag mein reh jayange pyare tere bol " Surely the bols of the timeless melodic songs of invincible maestro, Mukesh are bound to stay for for centuries enrapturing all inquisitive music aficionados even after thirty years of his demise.

Some of his hit songs were presented at a musical tribute " Mukesh Ki Yadein -IX ", organised by the Payal Musical Club and Pancham Musical club at the Tagore theatre here today.

The programme director and lead singer, Harkseh Thakur and other artists attempted to revive the majesty and magnificence of the base voice of Mukesh in different moods. Harkesh attempted to bring alive the pathos immaculately instilled by Mukseh. 

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Dr Kuldip Singh scales new heights
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, September 2
Prof Kuldip Singh, Department of Surgery, Dayanand Medical College and Hospital, Ludhiana, has been elected secretary-general of Endoscopic Laparascopic Surgeons of Asia (ELSA). Dr A.P.J. Abdul Kalam honoured the surgeon at Hyderabad during the ELSA congress on being elected to the post, held by surgeons from China, Singapore and Hong Kong since the inception of the body 14 years ago.

ELSA governs and organises academic and training programmes in the subcontinent and is part of the International Federation of Endoscopic Societies (IFSES).

Dr Kuldip Singh is the president of the Indian Association of Gastro Endo surgeons.

“My endeavour will be to get the maximum number of Indian surgeons involved in the academic and training programmes in the subcontinent in terms of short courses”, said Dr Singh while talking to mediapersons here.

“I have plans to bid for hosting the world congress 2012 at the general body of the world congress to be held at Japan in 2008”, he said.

Dr Singh has delivered more than 75 international guest lectures and organised several conferences and workshops.

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Love birds in cop net

Ludhiana, September 2
The police detained 38 love birds caught loitering in an amusement park near Sahnewal here today. They were later released after a stern warning.

The police action comes in the wake of media reports on “indecent activities.” — TNS

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Cadets get training on microlight engine plane
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 2
Air Squadron NCC No. 4 (PB) started a combined annual training camp-2007 at Guru Nanak Public School, Sarabha Nagar, here yesterday under the command of Wing Commander Pradeep Bishnoi, commanding officer No. 4(PB) Air Squadron of the NCC.

The camp will run till Tuesday at the school and thereafter it will be shifted to Maharaja Ranjit Singh Punjab Police Academy, Phillaur.

A total of 350 air wing cadets, including 80 girls, are participating in the camp. Microlight flying training has already been started at the Sahnewal airfield. Twenty cadets are getting training on a microlight engine aircraft everyday.

Apart from flying training and military training, range firing, drill competitions, aeromodelling and cultural programes shall be conducted during the camp.

A lecture in career counselling is also planned during the camp to make the cadets aware of various opportunities available to them to pursue their career after graduation. 

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Letters
Be careful about water

When people like me come to India from cold countries like Canada, they like the weather and find it very relaxing. But they have to be extra careful with their food. One day I was out for my walk with my dog when I saw a fruit seller. He was smoking on the fruit without realising how many germs he was transmitting through the fruits. As a young girl from Canada, my advice to people from outside is that if they have to eat anything from outside, they should take only hot and fresh food. Other major problem for visitors like us is the drinking water. I find water contaminated everywhere and moment you drink water from a public tap or hand pump or even from a roadside eatery, chances are you will fall sick. To enjoy your vacations and have fun, take only mineral or boiled water after cooling it.

Gursahiba K. Chandhoke (Canada), Jagraon, 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.

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Fake passport case
Our Correspondent

Samrala, September 2
On the complaint of Bhupinder Singh of Kakrala Khurd, SSP Khanna had ordered an enquiry in the case of Bhan Singh, son of Harchand Singh, of the same village. The complaint stated that Bhan Singh had got another passport issued in the name of Gulwinder Singh. After the enquiry by DSP Samrala, he was found guilty and therefore a case under Section 420 has been registered against him in the Hedon police chowki, under Sa rala police station.

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Brother of civic head booked
Tribune News Service

Mullanpur, September 2
The Dakha police has booked the brother of the president the local nagar panchayat and in a cheating case involving a land deal.

Bajrang Bansal, the brother of president of the nagar panchayat Telu Ram of Mullanpur Dakha, and Pritpal Singh of Mullanpur and Mohinder Singh of Pakhowal Road, Ludhiana, have been booked under Sections 379, 420, 447, 511 and 128 B of the IPC on a complaint of Gurdeep Singh of Mullanpur.

Sources close to Bajrang said the point of contention in the case was the prestige issue of Akali workers who had failed to make their candidate president of the nagar panchayat, Mullanpur. Telu Ram became the president two years ago defeating the Akali-BJP combine candidate.

The sources said Bajrang Bansal was neither the purchaser nor the seller of the disputed land.

He was not even a witness in the said land deal situated on the link road, Mullanpur.

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2 held for stealing mobiles
Our Correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh, September 2
The Dehlon police has arrested two youths of Jhuner village who had allegedly snatched mobiles from at least nine cyclists from this area during recent months. They used to sell snatched mobiles at throwaway prices and used the proceeds for their “personal” expenses.

Satnam Singh, son of Balbir Singh, and Sultan Khan, son of Kewal Khan, residents of Jhuner village in district Sangrur were arrested by the police party led by Prem Singh, SHO, Dehlon, from Ghungrana level crossing near here yesterday. The accused admitted to have snatched at least nine mobiles from various persons during recent months.

Preliminary investigations revealed that the accused belonged to noble families. They were identified and later nabbed on the basis of information provided by one of the victims. Jaspreet Singh, son of Bhajan Singh of Brahampur village, had complained to the police that two motorcycle borne miscreants had snatched his mobile and cash worth Rs 1,200, when he was returning home from a village dairy on the last Monday night.

The motorcycle was intercepted by the police near Ghungrana level crossing and the nabbed youths admitted to have committed the crime. On the basis of information provided by the accused, the police recovered mobiles from various persons at Malerkotla and Sanduar area.

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