L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S

Poor to get 10 pc more seats: Minister
No tuition, admission fee in engg colleges, polytechnics
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana November 2
Swarna Ram, Minister for Technical Education, Industrial Training and Social Security, Punjab, said here today that the state government had decided to sanction 10 per cent more seats for poor students in all engineering colleges and polytechnics in the state, for which no admission and tuition fee would be charged.

The minister was addressing a meeting of principals of polytechnics and ITIs of Ludhiana district here.

More sops

  • Each block to have polytechnic or ITI
  • New vocational courses to be started
  • Polytechnics, ITIs to begin plus I, plus II classes
  • Machines from Germany to be imported for fashion institutes
  • Training institute at Ahmedgarh with 600 seats soon
  • 350 more instructors to be appointed

He said the state government had also decided to open at least one polytechnic or ITI in each block of the state, for which a survey had already been conducted.

The minister Swarna Ram added that a number of new vocational courses suitable for the changed technology in the industrial sector would be started in all technical education institutions.

He said with a view to properly preparing students for technical education, plus one and plus two classes would be started in all the polytechnics and ITIs, where quality education in maths, science and english be available.

The minister further said keeping in view the revolution in latest training techniques in fashion technology, the government had planned to import the latest machines from Germany for training in fashion technology institutes.

As part of its plan, the government was going to set up a new vocational training institute at Ahmedgarh with 600 seats of entirely latest trades and 19 new polytechnics in government sector were also being set up in the state.

The minister said 470 instructors for different trades had been recruited in ITIs and the process for recruitment of 350 more instructors started.

Among others who were present at the meeting included district social security officer Karam Singh Dhillon, principal, Government Polytechnic for Women, H K Sood, principal Kirpal Singh Bhullar, Principal ITI Ludhiana Balwinder Singh and Principal ITI Samrala Jagmohan Kumar.



PU election fever grips city students
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, November 2
Though the government has banned student elections in the state, still a few leaders of student unions here are busy supporting their candidates for Panjab University election, Chandigarh, which is scheduled to be held on November 5.

A large number of local students from different colleges and Punjab Agricultural University are in Chandigarh for supporting their friends and acquaintances.

Senior vice-president of the local wing of the National Students Union of India (NSUI) Amritpal Shori said they had done everything for supporting their candidates. Active NSUI members and presidents and general secretaries of other unions, too, visit Panjab University, Chandigarh every year requesting friends and acquaintances to vote for their favourite candidate. Not only the students from Ludhiana but from Jalandhar, Sangrur, and Bathinda as well extend indirect or direct support to their candidates in Chandigarh.

He added that earlier the students needed vehicles for canvassing but now students could easily be contacted on telephone.

On the issue of unruly scenes during the election, Shori said students now believed in peaceful elections and if any party indulged in dirty politics or fights, the voters preferred to stay away from it. “They can never emerge as winners”, he said, adding that a number of

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Man gets 1-yr jail for cheque that bounced
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, November 2
Judicial magistrate Tarsem Mangla has convicted Bhag Singh of Mata Nagar, Ludhiana, in a cheque bounce case. He was sentenced to undergo imprisonment for one year and told to pay fine of Rs 5000.

Accused was convicted by the court, while deciding the complaint filed by Harjit Singh of Punjab Mata Nagar. The judge turned down the plea of leniency raised by the accused with the observations that instead of admitting the liability, accused had started maligning the complainant by calling him a thief.

Harjit Singh had stated that the convict was his neighbourer. He had extended a loan of Rs 50,000 to him in 2000. In order to return the loan amount, the convict issued a cheque of the same amount as security, drawn on Punjab National Bank, Jawaddi. But when the cheque was presented to the banker of the convict, it was dishonoured. Despite notice, the convict failed to pay the money.

However, the convict denied any transaction or issuance of cheque and even denied having bank account with Punjab National Bank.



Work at sub-registrar office paralysed
State losing lakhs daily due to protest by real estate agents against stamp duty hike
Kanchan Vasdev
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, November 2
The work of sale deeds at the sub-registrar office here has almost come to a standstill, causing a revenue loss to the state exchequer, as real estate agents are in protest against the steep hike in stamp duty in the city.

Just a few sale deeds were executed today against a normal daily average between 200 and 300 deeds in the office as the property dealers sat on relay fast for the second consecutive day outside the office at Ferozepore Road.

The exchequer makes lakhs of rupees everyday on account of sale deeds in the district but for the past one week it has been facing a loss of huge money.

The property dealers on a call given by their association, sat on the dharna with five of them observing fast against the hike that, they claimed, was between 75 per cent and a whopping 600 per cent, especially in Ludhiana.

‘‘Stamp duty on not only urban land but also on agricultural land has also been increased so many times. This is arbitrary. Why should Ludhiana bear the brunt of the situation if the revenue department has set a target? ’’ asked Kamal Chatley, an office-bearer of the association.

He added that the residents were already paying through their nose to buy property here and the government wanted to pressure them all the more by charging so much of stamp duty.

‘‘Hardly 10 sale deeds were executed today. We have told our agents to boycott the entire process. And see the state is losing instead of earning money. Is it fine with them now? ’’ asked an angry Chatley, who added that he did not understand how they would meet their targets now.

Chatley said they would sit on a dharna on Monday also with wearing black badges.

Reshamjeet Singh Gaba, another office-bearer, said they had a talk with the deputy Commissioner also who asked them to lift their dharna. ‘‘But we are not pacified with his assurance. We have submitted a memoradum to the Chief Minister also.’’

The dealers said they would continue their protest until their demands were met. "If they do not resolve our problem, we will not hesitate to intensify our struggle and will resort to agitation”, they added.



Festivities keep cops on toes
Tribune News Service

A police team conducts checking at Jagera Bridge near Ahmedgarh on Friday.
A police team conducts checking at Jagera Bridge near Ahmedgarh on Friday. — Photo by Mahesh Sharma

Ludhiana, November 2
Shaken by the Shingaar bomb blast tragedy, the local police has beefed up security especially in the congested markets of the city in view of the festival season.

A police party along with its dog squad is making rounds of the old bazaars like Chaura Bazaar, Sabun Bazar, Trunk Bazar, Lakkar bazar and other areas. People throng these areas during the festival season. Team members said they were thoroughly checking these areas so that no untoward incident takes place in the city.

Police officials said public should not panic as it was routine affair and advised them to carry on with their usual activities but should remain vigilant.

‘‘We are just keeping a tab on the anti-social elements so that nothing untoward takes place. The dog squad has been put on the job,” a police official said.

Mandi Ahmedgarh: Vehicles, including public transports, were being checked lest the miscreants enter or leave the area with weapons or other contrabands. Ludhiana Tribune found out that special teams, acting under direction of Paramjit Singh Gorayan, Bhupinder Singh and Narinder Pal Singh Ruby, all DSPs at Dehlon, Jagraon and Raikot, respectively, had conducted raids at a few establishments, including religious places, hotels, inns and busy market places in their respective areas.

While residents of the area have welcomed the police action, sympathizers of a few extremists termed it as a move to harass those who had returned to the mainstream. Passengers coming from outside were also not happy with the state police which according them was allegedly harassing them for nothing.

Dehlon SHO said he had been directed to conduct raids at a few places, including the bus stops and accident-prone spots.



Tax-evading units under watch
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, November 2
Rented property is a major focus for the department of Customs and Central Excise which is expecting to rake in high amount of service tax from this segment. The department, that has set a target of collecting Rs 950 crore as service tax this financial year, is also keenly observing “tax-evading” industries like steel furnaces and “pan masala” manufacturers.

While the department is looking at a 20 per cent growth in the service tax collection this year, the collection is not matching the national average as a few services are not included in this zone.

“After inclusion of 10 more services, the number of services under the service tax has increased to 110 this year. We are expecting good performance and 600 more assessees have been registered with us now. But, collection is lower as a few services are not included in this zone,” said D.S.Sra, chief commissioner, Customs and Central Excise, who was in Ludhiana today.

The department has set the target of collecting Rs 1,650 crore for the central excise and Rs 900 crore for Customs.

Regarding trade between India and Pakistan, Sra said the response had been encouraging now that road route had been open. “On the first day we had sent just three trucks and in October alone we had sent as many as 45 trucks in a day. Incoming trucks from Pakistan are lesser, say 20, in a day,” he added.

He said infrastructure at the Amritsar port would be improved and 100 acres was being acquired for the purpose. “It will be utilised for loading, unloading, storage et al. Besides, a separate gate for the cargo movement will be opened, which is expected to make things easy for the traders.”



Govt attitude

Personnel of Punjab Agricultural University, Ludhiana, have expressed their resentment against the state government’s attitude for not issuing the notification for sanctioning the DA from November 1,2007, on the pattern of the Central government employees. However, the Central, Haryana and the Himachal Pradesh governments had sanctioned the DA long ago.

The leave travel allowances had been withheld for the past four years. Pensioners apprehend that their pension is also likely to be withheld for months together due to the non-release of the funds.

R.R. Katyal, Ludhiana

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Commission agent dupes farmers; flees
Our Correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh, November 2
Acting on the directions of the SSP Ludhiana (Rural), the Raikot police has booked a commission agent of Tazpur village for allegely duping farmers of huge amounts. Kewal Krishan of Tazpur village, now settled at Raikot, was booked for allegedly duping Surrain Singh of Tazpur and other farmers of huge amounts they had deposited with the suspect.

A large number of farmers near here had accused the agent Kewal Krishan of taking away their money which they had deposited with him. Kulwinder Singh, Ranjit Singh, Surain Singh, Sukhdev Singh, Sikander Singh, Lakhbir Singh and Zora Singh of Tazpur were among victims.

After receiving report about the alleged disappearance of the commission agent, SSP, Ludhiana (rural), has ordered the police to probe the allegations levelled by the farmers.

During investigation, it was found that the commission agent had breached the trust of the farmers and had misappropriated amounts deposited by them for his own luxuries. While the exact amount taken away was yet to be ascertained, Surrain Singh alone had been duped of more than Rs 33 lakh.

According to DSP, the police has started preparing lists of the property of the commission agent which, at a later stage, might be appropriated to set off loans of farmers proportionately.



Man booked for abetting suicide
Our Correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh, November 2
The Raikot police has booked a resident of Pakhowal village near here under Section 306 of the IPC for allegedly abetting his wife to commit suicide by setting herself on fire yesterday.

Ram Kumar, son of Balbir Singh of Pakhowal village, was booked for allegedly forcing his wife, Lachhami, to commit suicide by setting herself on fire. The victim took this extreme step after her husband, suspecting her of having illicit relationship with a few persons, had been harassing her after their marriage.

According to a complaint lodged on the statement of Jaswinder Singh of Shaheed Bhagat Singh Nagar Ludhiana, Lachhami and Ram Kumar had got married 18 months ago. Ram Kumar used to harass her on one pretext or the other. Not bearing the strain, Lachhami set herself on fire yesterday and died on the spot.



Trader’s account books seized
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, November 2
Official of the state excise and taxation department seized books of accounts and other documents of a dry fruits trader near Kesar Ganj, Mandi Chowk, here today.

According to sources, officials under the supervision of assistant excise and taxation commissioner D.K. Verma inspected account books of Makhan Lal Sham Lal, the dry fruit trader.

Officials of the district II inspected the account books of a business unit as well. Investigations were going on till the filing of this report.



Woman booked for forgery

Jagraon, November 2
Sidhwanbet police has booked Rajinder Kaur wife of Chamkaur Singh, Moga, under Sections 419,420,465, 467,468, 471,120-B of the IPC. Rajinder Kaur prepared few documents, misrepresented the same to be genuine and got issued police clearing certificate.

During verification the SSP ordered the registration of the case. No arrest has been made so far. — OC



Biz Word
India must supply branded products, says expert
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, November 2
Indian exporters, who are currently passing through a tough situation due to stiff competition offered by China, should focus on their strength areas to emerge winners in global market. They must venture into supplying branded products, something that China is not doing, and should try to focus on smaller size orders, which again is an area that can help them gain competitive advantage over their competitor, said Ajit Shah, export-import consultant.

Shah was here to address exporters at a seminar on “Export Assistance Schemes, Foreign Exchange management, Customs and Excise” organised by the Synthetic and Rayon Textiles Export Promotion Council (SRTEPC) today. He elaborated on export assistance schemes that exporters can avail of.

Anil Sareen, head of regional treasury market unit, State Bank of India, New Delhi, spoke on forward contracts, hedging and options.

Exporters also presented problems related to banks. A.K. Mehra, commissioner of central excise, Ludhiana, V.K. Gupta, joint director general foreign trade, Ludhiana, and Sanjeev Saran, chairman of SRTEPC, were also present.



Seminar on software development

Ludhiana, November 2
Quest Infosys, Regional Centre of Punjab Technical University, Jalandhar (under Distance Education Programme), organised a Seminar on ‘Software Development’ here today. The resource person Tarvinder Singh, chief analyst of technocrats, a software firm of Ludhiana, said software development is the translation of a user need or marketing goal into a software product.

It is a complex and often difficult process requiring the synthesis of many disciplines, from modelling and design to code generation, project management, testing, deployment, change management and beyond. — TNS



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