L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S

Entry tax makes sugar bitter
Sweets prices expected to rise by 25 per cent
Shveta Pathak
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, November 1
Responding rather quickly to the government's announcement to impose entry tax on sugar, city markets recorded a rise in sugar prices today. In retail markets, the commodity, that was priced at Rs 16 yesterday, was available between Rs 16.50 to Rs 20 per kg today. Wholesalers said an increase of Rs 20-40 per quintal took place within a day.

For consumers, Diwali sweets are likely to cost 25 per cent dearer in the coming days as price rise would be triggered by the tax factor and also increased demand due to the festival season.

"Mills have been quite quick in taking advantage of the situation. They know that entry tax will lead to an increase in the rates of sugar that is imported from other states and they have already effected an increase," said Jagjit Singh, president of the Wholesale Sugar and Vanaspati Association.

Of the total consumption of sugar in the state, more than 70 per cent comes from other states like Uttar Pradesh. The government's announcement to impose entry tax will lead to increased prices of sugar that is imported.

Consumers are particularly at a disadvantage. At this time of the season when sugar rates record a minor decline due to arrival of jaggery, the announcement pertaining to entry tax has not just nullified, it has reversed the impact. Adding to it is the rise that will take place due to increased demand.

"Rates have already begun looking up. The announcement has come as a blow to the sugar market. Today we were expecting prices to be lower than yesterday but they have increased," said Pawan Gupta, who has an outlet in Kesar Ganj Mandi.

Those in the business said the coming few days could even witness artificial scarcity of sugar as mills were expecting a rise in the rates.

Sweet shop owners, however, said the impact of the rise will be visible in a few days only. "It would take three to four days for prices of sweets to rise," said a mithai shop owner in the old city.



Youth knifes friend to death for mobile
Our Correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh, November 1
The Sidhwan Bet police has nabbed a youth of Amargarh Kaler village, who, with an intention to snatch a mobile and a cycle, allegedly killed his friend and thrown his body in a field on Tuesday. Snatched articles have been recovered from the accused.

Jagsir Singh was arrested when he was trying to leave the area today. The youth had allegedly killed Happy (15) of the same village.

According to Gurpreet Singh Bhullar, SSP, Ludhiana (Rural), Jagsir Singh had allegedly killed Happy with an intention to snatch his mobile and a bicycle. Ramu, father of the victim, told the police that his son had disappeared.

Preliminary investigations revealed that Happy, after returning from a workshop at Jagraon, had gone somewhere with Jagsir Singh. His parents became worried when he did not return home even after Jagsir had reached his home.

The worried parents, besides searching their son in the area, sought help of management committees of various gurdwaras to make public announcement about disappearance of their son. Ultimately, some villagers told the family that they had seen some stray dogs and vultures near fields belonging to Arjan Singh.

“And when we reached the fields, we found the mutilated body of Happy that bore injuries of sharp-edged weapons,” Ramu reported to the police.

Investigations further revealed that Jagsir had allured Happy to go with him on the pretext of getting him higher price for his mobile. Though Jagsir had told him that his friends wanted to dispose of his mobile, Happy became suspicious after some time.

Apprehending disclosure of his sinister designs, Jagsir attacked Happy with a knife and threw his body in the field.

However, the police succeeded in nabbing Jagsir who admitted to having committed the crime. The mobile phone and the cycle were also recovered from his possession.



Youth Festival
Ten students booked for attacking judges
Our Correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh, November 1
The Dehlon police has booked 10 students and members of a bhangra team of GHG Khalsa College, Sudhar, for allegedly damaging property of GNG Khalsa College and assaulting and threatening official judges.

GNG Khalsa College hosted the Diamond Jubilee Youth and Heritage Festival of the Moga-Ferozepur zone of Punjab University.

The suspects had gone on rampage after the judges had adjudged them runners-up and declared DAV College, Jagraon, as winners.

The management of the host college has urged higher authorities of the university, including the vice-chancellor, to debar the erring team from participation in functions for at least three years.

Terming the incident as unfortunate, director, Youth Welfare, Panjab University, S M Kant said stern action would be taken against erring students. “However, it is too early to comment on the quantum of punishment at this stage,” he added. He further maintained that the sanctity and esteem of the university functions would be maintained at all costs.

Amrinder Singh, son of Jaspal Singh, Gurinder Singh, son of Baljinder Singh, Gurminder Singh, son of Surjit Singh, Hakam Singh, son of Surjit Singh, Prabhjit Singh, son of Gurminder Singh, Hardeep Singh, son of Baldev Singh, Jatinder Singh, son of Balwant Singh, Harpreet Singh, son of Ajmer Singh, Gur Ik Jo Singh, son of Pritam Singh, and Navraj Pal Singh, son of Inderjit Singh (all students and members of bhangra team of GHG Khalsa College, Sudhar) were booked under various sections of the IPC for allegedly damaging property of GNG College, Narangwal, and assaulting and threatening certain university officials.

According to a complaint lodged by Hardil Jit Singh Gosal, principal of the host college, “Immediately after coming to know that they had lost the first position to DAV College, Jagraon, they started abusing the judges and went to the extent of assaulting them. Besides tearing posters, they broke flower pots, windowpanes and damaged other property of the college,” Gosal reported to the police in the evening.

Gurpreet Singh Bhullar, SSP, Ludhiana, said, “A case was registered after receiving a written complaint by the principal in the evening.”



Murderous bid on ex-councillor

Ludhiana, November 1
The police has booked 10 persons in an attempt to murder case for allegedly attacking former councillor Satwinder Singh Jawadi, who was here to attend a hearing at the District Courts complex.

The incident took place in front of the police post situated in the complex.

According to Satwinder Singh Jawadi, he came to the complex along with his father and brother for a hearing when some persons, armed with sharp-edged weapon, attacked them. — TNS



Tax sleuths seize hosiery parcels

Ludhiana, November 1
Tax sleuths conducted investigations and surveys on various assessees here today and yesterday. While books of two shellers in Raikot and Jagraon were inspected by the state Excise and Taxation Department, a team of officials seized nine hosiery parcels near Soodan Mohalla here today.

In another case, the department inspected accounts of three cotton mills in Jagraon. The Income Tax Department also conducted a survey on a city-based share broker here yesterday. — TNS



Lawyers to shun work today
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, Novmber 1
Lodging strong protest over the construction of chambers by deed writers on the parking space being used by lawyers, the District Bar Association(DBA) has decided to abstain from work tomorrow.

This decision was taken at the meeting of DBA convened by former DBA president Naval Kishore Chhibber, secretaries of the Bar Council of Punjab and Haryana Harish Narang, P S Laddi, Amandeep Bhanot and several other lawyers.

The lawyers also condemned the attack on a city lawyer Sunil Sood. They have urged the police to take strict action against the culprit. The information was given by Ravi Grewal, secretary of the DBA, in a press communique issued here today.



Proclaimed offender held
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, November 1
The local police here this morning arrested proclaimed offender (PO) Jagdish Singh, who was wanted in a murder case for the last seven months.

SP (detective) Gurpreet Singh Toor told the Ludhiana Tribune that the accused, Jagdish Singh, was wanted in a case under various sections of the IPC for allegedly committing a murder, abduction in order to murder and misappropriation of property, knowing that it was in possession of a deceased person at his death.

A resident of Jalandhar, Jagdish Singh allegedly was a highway robber, who along with other accomplices used to loot and later murder taxi drivers. He used to prepare duplicate documents of the vehicles and sell them, said the police.

His other accomplices, Joginder Singh, Jagmohan Singh, Amandeep Singh, Sumer Singh, Ranjit Singh, Gurmail Singh and Balbir Singh, are already behind bars.

Toor said the police was specially vigilant during the festival season. "Due to the festival season, the district police is keeping a special check on the incidents of robbery and looting as these tend to rise during this period every year."



7 quintals synthetic khoya seized
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, November 1
Stepped up vigil by health officials against adulteration of food items and apprehended sale of sweets made from synthetic khoya during the ongoing festival season paid rich dividends as seven quintals khoya was seized from halwais (sweetmeat makers) in different parts of the 
city in wee hours of the morning today.

The officials had yesterday also busted a racket involved in making synthetic khoya.

The consignment of khoya, believed to be synthetic, had arrived at the railway stations in different passenger trains from Uttar Pradesh in the middle of night and the local contact of the suppliers was make to delivery of the same at the door steps of the halwais.

The civil surgeon Dr Sat Pal Sharma told, the department had received information to meet the increased demand of sweets during festival season, an estimated one to five quintals of synthetic khoya was being supplied every day to the sweet makers in the city.

The consignments of khoya were being transported in a clandestine manner during night through Shalimar Express, Jammu Mail, New Delhi Amritsar Express and Deluxe Express and deliveries were made to the sweet shops before day break.

On a tip off on Wednesday night, teams of health officials were set up and deployed at the railway station. At around 4 am in the morning, two carts loaded with 14 packages of khoya from the railway station which were followed by health officials to different points of delivery.

According to Dr Sharma, two quintal khoya was offloaded at Ramji Sweets on Gill Road, one quintal each at Bengali Sweets in Aggar Nagar, Janta Sweets in Dholewal, Lakshmi Sweets on Oswal Road and Piara Sweets in Sunder Nagar while 50 kg each was delivered at Sharma Sweets in Kochhar Market and Kamla Sweets on Shingar Road.

The team of health officials intercepted the consignments at each delivery point, took samples of khoya and seized the entire quantity on suspicions of the stuff being synthetic or adulterated.



Release DA, demand staff
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, November 1
The Punjab State Ministerial Services Union is sore over the alleged indifferent attitude of the state government towards employees. The union leaders said they had entrusted full faith in the Akali-BJP alliance as the Congress did not bother to address their pending demands.

Sukhwinder Singh, president of the local unit of the union, said in a press statement today that if the government did not release their DA instalment, they would resort to an agitation. He condemned the statement issued recently by Parkash Singh Badal, Chief Minister, Punjab, in which he said the DA proposal was yet to be considered.

The union leaders said it was unfortunate that neighbouring governments had already implemented the proposal but the Punjab government was yet to consider it.

Meanwhile, the Punjab PWD Band R Ministerial Services Association held its meeting under the chairmanship of Balbir Chand here today. The association members said on the one hand, the Badal government was saying that the financial state of Punjab had improved a lot, on the other, the pending DA instalment of employees was yet to be released. The members demanded immediate release of the DA allowance and urged the government to recruit regular staff to fill all vacancies in the department.

The retired employees of Punjab Agricultural University (PAU) have also condemned the Badal government for not releasing the DA instalment to retired university employees.



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