L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S

MC spat brings public works to halt
Mayor, his men hold gate rally 
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, December 11
Public works were paralysed in the city today as the employees and officials of the Municipal Corporation were busy in participating in a protest against the city municipal commissioner on the first working day after the general house meet a few days ago.

The garbage was not lifted and no public work was taken up in the offices of the MC during the morning hours as the employees and officials organised a gate rally outside the MC office in Mata Rani Chowk.

The staff members came out of streets in a big way and raised slogans against Bains and demanded that he should be expelled from the house for levelling allegations against the commissioner. They handed over a memorandum to the city mayor Hakam Singh Gyaspura for expelling him from the house.

The agitating staff alleged that Bains always indulged in blackmailing of employees and even pressured them to do works illegally. They also alleged that he always threatened to get them framed in Vigilance cases if they did not oblige him.

The gate rally was addressed by mayor, senior deputy mayor and senior officials who criticised Bains for casting aspersions on the integrity of commissioner without having any proof against him.

They said it was not the first time that the councillor had indulged in such a practice but earlier also he was bullying employees to get his works done.

They even threatened to go on pen down strike if their pleas were not heard and action was not taken against Bains.

Probe Gill bridge scam: Bains, aides 
Kanchan Vasdev
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, December 11
Intensifying his tirade against municipal commissioner Vikas Partap, city councillor Simarjit Singh Bains paraded 18 councillors belonging to his camp in an ostensible show of strength and demanded an inquiry into the alleged Gill bridge scam that had rocked the general house of the MC a few days ago.

Jagbir Singh Sokhi, another councillor, supported by many others, alleged that a nexus existed between the former media adviser of a former Chief Minister and Deepak Builders and all contracts of important buildings were given to the firm during the Congress regime.

Though Bains did not address the mediapersons on the issue, he remained present at the venue where allegations were being levelled. His aides demanded a high-level inquiry into the allotment of contracts and even relieving of the officials concerned, including the commissioner pending the inquiry.

The councillors alleged that the builder was allotted all important contracts, including the Gill overbridge, new sabzi mandi, covering of ganda nala and recarpeting of Pakhowal Road during the Congress regime.

‘‘The owner of Deepak Builders was close to Chahal. That is why he was given all good contracts. Only a thorough probe can unveil the entire scam, ’’ alleged Sokhi. He added that the commissioner and other officials should be relieved from duty for the time being.

Sokhi said that he had violated the decorum of the house by leaving the proceedings midway. ‘‘Action should be taken against him for doing so. And he was not answering the questions put to him during the zero hour but was replying to Bains’ questions,’’ said Sokhi.

He added that every house member had the right to raise a voice against the corruption and the employees and officials were indulging in pressure tactics by striking work.

Those who were present at the conference included Parminder Singh Soma, Jaspal Singh Sandhu, Kamaljit Singh Kaswal, Tarsem Singh Bhinder, Tanvir Singh Dhaliwal, Inderjit Singh Gill, K.L. Chabra, Manminder Singh Makkar, Swarandeep Singh Chahal, Bibi Pushwant Kaur Gohalwaria, Bibi Sunita Rani, Bibi Roopandeep Kaur Mohli, Sher Singh Garcha, Daljit Singh Grewal, Gurpreet Singh Gora, Dharamjit Singh Garcha, Kapil Sonu and Akali leaders, including Harcharan Singh Gohalwaria, Jaswinder Singh Khalsa, Sarabjeet Singh Baba, Narinder Singh Malhi, Satpal Singh Lohara and Paramjit Kaur Shivalik.

Report on ’slips’ ready for CM’s perusal
Jupinderjit Singh
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, December 11
With the ongoing tussle between municipal councillors led by Simarjit Singh Bains on the one side and Mayor Hakam Singh Gayaspura and commissioner Vikas Pratap on the other, several skeletons in the MC cupboard are being revealed.

One such scandal seems loss in crores on account of building fee evasion with work done on illegal "recommendation slips" issued by certain municipal councillors.

Bains, once a claimant to the post of mayor, is alleged to have issued a large number of slips carrying his official stamp to the effect that the work recommended on these was to be carried out with reduced or no fee charged by the MC.

Most slips pertain to the work in his area, especially Dabba Colony and surrounding areas. Bains is in the centre of controversy after he alleged irregularities in the work of a city flyover, charging the MC commissioner at the general house with involvment in the irregularities.

A report on these “slips” has been prepared for the perusal of the chief minister. An estimate made on the basis of the slips suggest the MC lost revenue of several crores due to the practice. Inquiries made by Ludhiana Tribune reveal that not only he, but several other councillors indulged in the practice.

The slips addressed to MC officials carried a note that the bearer was known to the councillor and the “needful” should be done.

However, Bains says that as an elected representative, he had every right to issue such slips.

“People in my area are poor. They live in small 50 or 100 square yard houses.The slips ensured they were not harassed. Moreover, I have not taken any money for issuing the slips.” 



Hockey tourney, a family affair 
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, December 11
These hockey player knows how to make a perfect balance between home and astrotchildren along with them at the Mohinder Partap urf as they have brought there Grewal Hockey Tournament.

These hockey women are successful on both the hockey grounds and home front. While playing hockey they bring laurels at national and international level, and on the home ground they are proving to be good mothers.

And this is evident from the fact that some players have brought there little children along while they participate in the 11th Mohinder Partap Singh Grewal Hockey Tournament being played at PAU here today. About six women hockey players have brought their children along with them here.

The children are staying with there mothers at various hostels accommodations provided by the organisors of the tournament.

Most of these women players have not only brought laurels for their state and the country but have also won the prestigious Arjuna award. KSH Surajlata Devi, who came here as a manager, has brought her 3-year-old son, Max with her.

Playing for Western Railways, this Arjuna award winner from Manipur is currently working at Church gate Railway station Mumbai.

The former National hockey team captain has represented India from 1994 to 2004.

While talking to Tribune, Surajlata said,"Initially, it was quite difficult job to devote equal time at all three fronts, of being a player, office-goer and a mother. But now I have got habituated of busy life as I have recently hired a maid to take care of my kid."

Further, she said she had preferred to take baby along where ever she was going to participate in a tournament.

According to Raman Deep Singh, director of Sport, PAU, Surajlata Devi will soon be joined ay another Arjuna award winner Pritam Thakran who will arrive tomorrow to play a match along with her two-year-old daughter Kristina.



City girl gets universal human rights award
Shveta Pathak
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, December 11
City girl Priti Kansal has been conferred with 2007 Universal Human Rights Promotional Award by the Indian Institute of Human Rights.

The 29-year-old social activist has worked towards bettering the lives of women in jails, building awareness on human rights, upliftment of women and children in rural areas and working towards getting justice to the underprivileged.

A former student of Kundan Vidya Mandir here and St Bedes College in Shimla, Kansal , who is the first one from Punjab to get this honour, came to limelight in 2001 when she launched a massive awareness campaign against shatoosh shawls.

"Working towards bettering the lives of others is the mission of my life towards which I strongly feel a lot more needs to be done," she said while talking to the Ludhiana Tribune. The journey towards contributing her bit for the society started way back in her college days when she undertook the task to teach children of the under priviledged. Soon after college, she got associated with the Wild Life Trust of India.

Another major task was her work for women at the Women Central Jail in Ludhiana. Conducting awareness campaigns and seminars for human rights, she also set up a charitable foundation, Aagaz, that works for the underprivileged. She takes up cases concerning violation of human rights and works towards getting justice to the victims.

The award, that was given to her by the Chief Minister of Nagaland, Neiphi-u Rio, in New Delhi yesterday, is given to one person every year.

Rahul Rai, director, Indian Institute of Human Rights, said: "The criteria to select the winner is critical as we nominate only two or three human rights activists every year and select one from across the country. This is the first time it has gone to someone in Punjab ."

Asked about her plans, Kansal said: "Helping the weaker lot get justice is my aim and I will continue making all efforts possible towards that direction." 



Youth takes man for a ride
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, December 11
A youth, well built and clean shaved, rode away a Bajaj Pulsar-220 motor cycle of black colour priced at over Rs 85,000 from Dada Motors on the pretext of taking a test drive of the vehicle.

The youth sped away on the vehicle much to the shock of salesmen. He went towards Sherpur Chowk.

The police later learnt he filled petrol in the vehicle from a fuel station and went to an unknown location.

A complaint has been lodged with the police. An alert has been sounded to look out for the bike on whose number plate test drive is written in bold letters. 



PAU pensioners yet to get pension 
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, December 11
More than 2,700 pensioners of Punjab Agricultural University (PAU) have failed to get their monthly pension. The pensioners have raised a lot of hue and cry over the non-disbursement of pension from State Bank of India, PAU branch. Some even blamed the PAU authorities for adopting "callous attitude" towards such a serious issue.

The issue of pension has already been raised many times as the university had showed its inability to continue with the pension fund because of severe financial crunch. After much efforts, the state government had agreed to help university till May, 2008. But till date, the bank has not received any grant from the state government.

M.R.Passi, convener, Confederation of PAU Pensioners' Association, said the pensioners were making rounds at the bank to get their pension but returned empty-handed as there was no money in the bank 
for pension.

"They say that they have not received the grant declared by the state government. It is the duty of the PAU authorities to get in touch with the state government. Why should we suffer?", he asked.

Another retired PAU employee B.D.Tandon said “Pensioners got their pension on 2nd or 3rd of every month. But it is December 11 and we have not got the pension. They have asked us to wait for another one week. It is unfortunate that neither the state nor the PAU authorities are paying any attention in this matter", said Tandon.

R.R.Katyal, another pensioner, said it was difficult for people like him to make rounds at PAU daily. "At the dusk of our lives, we are dependent on others now. The authorities should realise and try not to harass us like this", complained Katyal.

Dr R.K.Mahay, registrar, PAU, said they were given assurance of getting financial aid (for pensioners) from the state government. "We will send a person to Chandigarh tomorrow to get all details. The procedure might take a few more days. But we are very serious on this matter", said Dr Mahay.



DBA Poll
16 more file nominations 
Rajneesh Lakhanpal

Ludhiana, December 11
With the filing of 16 more nominations for various posts on the last day of nominations, the annual election scene of the District Bar Association (DBA) has heated up. Now there are 24 candidates in the field.

Prominent among those who filed their nomination papers today were former president of the DBA K.R. Sikri for the post of association president. He went to the returning officer followed by a procession of a large number of lawyers including Naval Kishore Chhibber, Jagmohan Singh Warraich (ex-DBA presidents), Harish Narang, G.S. Bal, Vijay B. Verma, Rajesh Rai and B.K. Baweja.

Senior lawyer Parveen Talwar also filed his nomination papers staking claim for the presidentship of the DBA. He was also accompanied by numerous lawyers including sitting Bar president Balwinder K. Goel, Rajneesh Gupta, R.S. Ratol, S.S. Cheema, Kanwar Harpal, Aman Kapila and Rustam Pal.

Parupkar Singh Ghumman, former secretary of the DBA, also filed nomination papers for the post of president. He was accompanied by Vicky Ahuluwalia, Gurpreet Singh Saini, Gagandeep Singh Johny, Rajan Chand.

For the post of secretary, five nomination were filed including those of Kirpal Singh Kalra, Govind Puri, Gurvinder Singh Sodhi, Sandeep Punni and Surinder Singh Gill. Puneet Chabbra submitted papers for the post of finance secretary. Two lawyers had already filed their nominations for the same post.

Navita Sharma filed her nomination for the post of joint secretary. Earlier, Mandip Singh Sidhu and Naginder Singh Gill had also filed papers for the same post.

Six nomination were filed for the posts of executive members which included those of Naveen Sharma, Inderjit Kaur, Jarnail Singh, Rahul Singla, Karamjit Sidhu and Dinesh Kumar.

Returning officer S.K. Pathak and assistant returning officer Darshan Gupta informed that scrutiny of the nomination papers would be done on December 12 while nominations could be withdrawn on December 13.



Assault on employee
Doctors, civil hospital staff hold protest 
Kuldip Bhatia

Ludhiana, December 11
The doctors, nurses and paramedical staff along with Class IV employees in the Civil Hospital held a protest here today against assault on a Class IV employee and intimidation of an emergency medical officer by those accompanying a resident of Haibowal colony, who was injured in an attack.

The police said two persons, identified as Gurcharan Singh and Bhutto, both residents of Haibowal, had been arrested in this connection and cases registered against them under various sections of the IPC. Surinder Mohan, SHO, Police Div No 2, said that rest of the accused persons would also be arrested soon.

Giving details of the incident, the protesting hospital staff said that some persons, accompanying a victim of an assault, came to the hospital on Sunday night for getting a medico-legal report (MLR) issued. Those seeking the MLR entered into an altercation with the medical officer on duty Dr Gurpreet Kaur Sekhon and the nursing staff, and later threatened them if the language of the MLR was not changed as per their desire.

As Rajeev Kumar, a Class IV employee intervened, those accompanying the injured persons launched an attack on him with a sharp-edged weapon which one of the accused persons brought out of his car. The doctor and nursing staff saved their lives by running away and locking themselves inside a room. The police personnel, deployed at the police post inside the hospital premises, were said to be sleeping and failed to intervene in time, the staff alleged.

The protesting doctors and other employees of the hospital demanded immediate action against the culprits while also calling upon the police and district administration to strengthen the security of the hospital employees, medical officers and nursing staff. They said the matter had been brought to the notice of senior health officials, who were asked to take up the matter with the police and make adequate security arrangements to check such incidents. 



Punjabi Week
Punjabi writers to get state backing
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, December 11
Hira Singh Gabria, jails, tourism and cultural affairs minister has said that the state government will take effective steps to ensure the effective implementation of the Punjabi language in the working of the government offices at all levels in the state. It would also encourage the writers engaged in the creation of Punjabi literature in a befitting manner.

Gabria was addressing writers and students at a function organised as part of Punjabi Week celebrations dedicated to 150th anniversary celebrations of Kuka Movement at Punjabi Bhawan here today.

Referring to Kuka Movement, Gabria said Satguru Ram Singh had created brave revolutionaries who had dared the British rulers and sacrificed their lives, even presented themselves to be blown before canons for the freedom of the nation. He regretted that even after the passage of 60 years after attaining Independence, we could not fulfil the basic needs of shelter, food and employment to all citizens of the country and we miserably failed to rise to the expectations of the martyrs.

Avtar Singh Hadd, director, Language Department, said for the promotion of Punjabi language a number of seminars and symposia were being organised during Punjab Week in various parts of the state. Dr Dharam Singh, head, Punjabi department of Guru Nanak Dev University, Amritsar, Dr Harvinder Singh Bhatti of social sciences department, Punjabi University, Patiala, and Dr Tara Singh Sandhu read out their papers on different aspects of Kuka Movement.

Surjit Pattar, president, Punjabi Sahit Academy, Suringder Singh Namdhari, Suba Harbhajjan Singh Namdhari and Tirath Singh Dhillon, chief news editor, Doordarshan, Jalandhar, were honoured for their excellent contribution for the promotion of Punjabi language and literature. 



PAU to honour progressive farmers
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, December 12
According to the information given by the PAU director of extension education today, the Punjab Agricultural University will honour two progressive farmers of Punjab for their excellence in agriculture (crops) and horticulture with the Chief Minister's award.

The awards, funded by the Chief Minister, will consist of a cash prize as well as a citation. The directorate of extension education, PAU, has invited applications containing information on different aspects of crop growing as well as fruit growing from progressive farmers by January 15, 2008.

The application proforma can be obtained from the office of director extension education, all Krishi Vigyan Kendras in different districts, offices of district extension specialists in different districts and agricultural officers and horticultural officers of the state department of agriculture and horticulture.

The farmers will be short-listed for the awards based on their contributions to agriculture and horticulture. 



10 booked for bid to grab land 
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, December 11
The Model Town police has booked a group of 10 alleged land grabbers along with their unknown accomplice for their attempt to grab a plot on the basis of forged documents in the colony owned by Gulshan Arora.

The accused Santosh Singh, Swaran Singh, Veer Singh, Dharam Chand, Satya Parkash, Harjinder Singh, Harvinder Singh, Sukhwant Singh, Baljinder Singh, Harbans Singh and an unknown accused allegedly forged the registraion copy of the plot and tried to forcibly occupy it on November 9.

A case under various sections of the IPC was registered on the basis of an inquiry conducted by SP City-I Sukhchain Singh.

Car stolen

The Division No. 8 police has registered a case against two unknown turbaned persons for stealing a car owned by Avtar Singh, a resident of Rishi Nagar. In the FIR Avtar Singh said he had parked his black Indica (PB-10-4674) near Bharatiya Vidya Mandir, Udham Singh Nagar, and went to the nearby street along with his friend. From the distance, he saw two turbaned youths taking away his car. SI Sukhdev Singh is investigating the case.

PO declared

Balwinder Singh, a resident of LIG flats near Dholewal Road, has been declared a proclaimed offender (PO) in a case registered against him on October 17 under Sections 406 and 420 of the IPC. He has been evading arrest in a case of cheating registered against him.

Rash driving

The Division No. 6 police has booked an unknown driver for damaging a Timber Store. The complainant Gurpreet Singh, owner of New Kalyan Timber Store on Rurka road, Dehlon, alleged that an unknown car (HR6 3A-1600) driver rammed his car into his timber store. The car crashed into the timber store and caused serious damage. The accused escaped from the seen.

The police has registered a case under Sections 279, 427 of the IPC for rash driving and endangering human life. 



5 held for theft
Our Correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh, December 11
The Dehlon police today arrested five persons in two separate cases of theft registered recently. Goods worth Rs 1.5 lakh were recovered from their possession.

Kanshi Ram alias Jalebi of New Simla Puri, Rajinder Kumar of Giaspura, Shiv Dyal of Chheentawal village and Balwinder Singh of Dhuri Line area were arrested by a party led by Nirmal Singh.

Dehlon SHO Prem Singh said the accused had been booked for allegedly stealing aluminum conductor from electricity poles installed between Chhapar and Latala villages about three months back. Cable worth about Rs 1.3 lakh was recovered from their possession.

Pappi of Kaind village was arrested for allegedly stealing a vacuum cleaner motor. 



Burglary attempt at bank
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, December 11
Burglars broke into a branch of the State Bank of India on the Subhani building road last night but could not succeed in gaining entry into the locker room.

In an FIR lodged in the division no. 2 police station, N R Dhingra, manager of the bank, said the attempt to burgle came to the notice this morning when the employees reached there. The main lock of the gate was found broken. The window was also found broken.

No valuable was, however, found missing. The police has registered a case under Sections 457, 380 of the IPC. 



Sanskrit teaching centre at Desh Bhagat college
Tribune News Service

Khanna, December 11
With a view to equip the students of Desh Bhagat Ayurvedic College with knowledge of Sanskrit language, the National Sanskrit Sansthan has set up a new Sanskrit teaching centre on the college premises.

Chairman of the Desh Bhagat group of Institutes, Zora Singh, said Sanskrit was a widely accepted language. 



Northern Railway trounce SAI 8-0
Anil Datt

Ludhiana, December 11
Northern Railway, Delhi, thrashed Sports Authority of India (SAI)-North, Sonepat, 8-0 to register second consecutive victory on the third day of the XIth All-India Mohinder Partap Singh Grewal Women's Hockey Tournament being played at Prithipal Singh Astroturf Stadium of Punjab Agricultural University, here today. Yesterday they overwhelmed Dhanoa XI, Punjab 11-0.

In the first match of the day, Northern Railway players dominated the proceedings throughout giving no chance to their opponents to settle down. They opened the account in the 13th minute through a field goal scored by Simrajeet Kaur. They increased the lead in the 28th minute when Jaydeep converted a penalty corner. Ritu made it 3-0 in the 33rd minute.

Two minutes into the second half, Balwinder Kaur scored a superb field goal to read it 4-0 and four minutes later, Simrajeet struck to consolidate the lead 5-0. Rajwinder Kaur successfully converted a penalty corner into a goal which complete the rout 6-0.

In the second match, North Eastern Railway, Gorakhpur, defeated Dhanoa XI, Punjab 5-2 after leading 3-1 at half time.

It was Dhanoa XI who went into the lead when Sharanjit Kaur scored through a penalty corner in the 8th minute. However, North Eastern Railway scored the equaliser five minutes later through a field goal by Mukta. They went ahead in the 17th minute through a penalty corner coversion by Poonam Singh. Toshi made it 3-1 just five minutes before the half time.

NE Railway pumped into two goals in the second session (40th minute and 48th by Anita to further cement the lead 5-1. With five minutes to go for the long whistle, Sapna Saini of Dhanoa XI sounded the board to reduce the margin 2-5.

In another match, Western Railway, Mumbai, toiled hard to outplay Madhya Pradesh Academy, Gwalior 2-0.

Nisha Singh found the target in the 30th minute to put her side into the lead while Th. Chanachan Devi struck in the 66th minute which sealed MP Academy girls' fate 2-0.

In the last match of the day, South Eastern Railway, Kolkata, quelled a strong challenge from Rail Coach Factory, Kapurthala, before emerging winners 3-2.

RCF, Kapurthala drew first blood in the 26th minute through a field goal scored by Sarita Lakra. Anandi P Hans of SE Railway restored parity in the very next minute. They went ahead in the 30th through their skipper, Jyoti S Kulu (2-1).

SE women consolidated the lead (3-1) through Adline Kar in the 46th minute while RCF, Kapurthala, reduced the margin with a few seconds to go for the long hooter through Renu Bala. 



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 |