Wanna hop on city bus? Wait
Project fails to meet April 1 launch deadline
Tribune News Service

Amritsar, April 4
City residents will have to wait a little longer for the much-hyped city bus service to start rolling. The ambitious project has already failed to meet its April 1 deadline announced earlier.

The commuters are anxiously waiting for the service, which would offer affordable public transport. For a distance of 5, 10 and 15 kilometers, the bus fare has been fixed at Rs 5, Rs 10 and Rs 15, respectively.

The state government had come up with the plan to introduce the service in order to get rid of traffic bottlenecks. The trial run was conducted in September on three routes.

Route one is from Do Burji to railway station, covering district courts. Route two covers central jail to Chatiwind Gate via bus stand, while the road from Chheharta to bus stand, via railway station has been identified as the third route.

The service on these routes would be on the pattern of Indore (Madhya Pradesh). The buses would come with a lower body for the convenience of senior citizens and children. Each bus would have room for 80 passengers.

When asked regarding the delay in the service, a non-committal municipal commissioner DPS Kharbanda said, “The process is on and tenders have been floated for setting up the required infrastructure. However, it would be difficult to spell out an exact date of the launch. The departments concerned have been holding meetings in Chandigarh in this connection,” he added.

At the local level, the corporation had chalked out a detailed plan for making the project a success, added Kharbanda. The routes have been finalised, ticketing system worked out and the bus terminal has already come up.

The ticket vending would be done using an electronic system. The corporation also plans to introduce electronic display system to inform passengers about the schedule of buses.

“The city bus service would help streamline the traffic flow in the city. At present , a majority of commuters have no other option but to depend on autorickshaws,” said Mayor Shawet Malik.



HSS elections: Members allege misconduct
Tribune News Service

Amritsar, April 4
A faction of the Himachal Sudhar Sabha (HSS) is up in arms against the alleged misconduct of the elections held on March 30 by the returning officer who had rejected the nomination papers of certain candidates on “flimsy and frivolous grounds”.

Sabha life member Ranvir Singh Rana said the alleged mala fide and partisan approach of Vikram Singh Negi became apparent when he intentionally rejected the papers of opposition candidates Bhandari Lal Sharma and Shavinder Singh Patial for the post of president and general secretary, respectively.

He alleged that Negi wanted Kewal Krishan Sharma and Kamlesh Kumar to continue as president and general secretary. He said the nominations were cancelled on the plea that the two had not mentioned their membership numbers on the nomination papers which was not mandatory as per the rules of the sabha.

However, Negi, while refuting the allegations of Rana, said that disqualified candidates had not filled the forms in a proper manner and even one of the candidates had filled the voter number of a person who had died a few years ago.

He said that even the disqualified candidates had not lodged any complaint with him in this regard and that Rana was not supposed to complain in this regard as he was not a candidate.

Rana said they had urged sabha patrons Milkhi Ram Sharma and Ram Lal to cancel the elections and start the poll process afresh.



Blind murder solved; 1 held
Our Correspondent

Amritsar, April 4
With the arrest of a migrant, Dhiraj Kumar (22), a resident of Sagar district in Madhya Pradesh, the police today claimed to have solved a blind murder case of Jagjit Singh (22), a notorious criminal, who had a number of criminal cases registered against him at various police stations in the state.

Jagjit was found stabbed to death at Bharariwal village on the outskirts of the city last morning. The police had registered a murder case at Sadar police station.

Family members of Jagjit in a complaint lodged with the police alleged that he had gone to buy medicines for his family members last evening but did not return.

Kunwar Vijay Partap Singh, SSP, in a press note issued here said during investigations it was found that the deceased was last seen with Dhiraj, who murdered him because of some old enmity.

He was arrested from the railway station when he was about to leave the city. Jagjit Singh had a fight with Dhiraj a year ago in which Dhiraj received serious face injuries.

Jagjit, a resident of Thande village, Jhabal road, was a drug addict and had many criminal cases, including that of possessing smack, excise and theft, registered against him. He was also convicted in a theft case and had remained in Ludhiana Jail for six months.



Pak blockbuster falls flat, fails to woo city audience
Vibhor Mohan
Tribune News Service

Amritsar, April 4
Despite being the first Pakistani film to be released commercially in India after four decades, “Khuda Kay Liye” (in the name of God) failed to generate the expected response in Amritsar.

Being screened in Adarsh cinema, the “world hit” fell flat on the second day with the box office registering a sale of only 28 tickets for Saturday’s first show.

Manager Roshal Lal said a majority of the audience walked out of the film midway and it proved that the movie lacked the usual masala. “Even out of 28 people in the show, more than 10 left before intermission. The Punjabi film screened before this movie fared much better,” he added.

The film, which tackles the contentious issue of “jehad”, describes how interpretation of scriptures by religious heads can affect the life of common man. The film has a simple narrative and has been critically acclaimed in several countries.

The story revolves around a young Muslim man in his youth who goes to a western country and marries an English woman. However, when his daughter wants to marry an English man all of a sudden religion comes in the way.

Her daughter is married to a young Pakistani man who believes in preaching religion. The film has been written, produced and directed by Shoaib Mansoor.

The manager said, “Indian films have traditionally done well in Pakistan and there are reports that ‘Race’ is doing good business there. Even audience in India have admired music of Nusrat Fateh Ali Khan and Reshma. Pakistani films do stand a chance provided they have a slightly general theme and are not made for the selective audience.”

However, there were some who really liked the film and believed that it had the potential to leave a lasting effect.

“The movie sparks off a debate in the audience’s mind, especially on the role of religion in the present contemporary world. The director has ably captured the beauty of Afghanistan and border areas of Pakistan. Besides, the music of the film is foot-tapping,” adds Vikas Chhabra, an MCA student from PTU.



Post bail, it’s ‘business’ as usual for criminals
Varinder Walia
Tribune News Service

Amritsar, April 4
Though the police has been trying hard to keep check on the criminals in the city, the crooks continue to have a field day.

Their modus operandi is simple: Get bail and resume old “business” by hoodwinking the cops.

Interestingly, the police arrested more than 125 criminals in a year for snatching chains, purses and mobile phones but the snatchers continue with their work as soon as they get out on bail.

Criminal Vishal Kundra, alias Nikka, was arrested on March 30 for various snatching cases but he got bailed out and has committed 13 crimes since then.

Similarly, Deepak was arrested on February 20 and he managed to get a bail after five days.

The incidents have created panic in the region and are giving sleepless nights to the police. In a blind murder case, both deceased and accused were found to be old criminals released on bail.

The deceased Jagjit Singh, alias Raju (25), was found killed with a sharp-edged weapon near Hakima Gate yesterday.

After scrutiny of criminal sheets, the police found that Raju was earlier arrested in different cases and was currently on bail.

However, after investigations it was revealed that accused Dheeraj Kumar, a resident of Madhya Pradesh, too had a criminal background and was released on bail last month.

SSP Kunwar Vijay Partap Singh said the police was planning to provide pictures of criminals to the victims along with copies of FIRs so that the latter could easily recognise them during judicial trials.

“It would definitely help to deny bail to the accused,” said SSP, adding that internet facilities were being given to the SHOs to keep a record of criminals.



Big Bonanza
April 12: Watch air warriors take a musical flight
Vibhor Mohan
Tribune News Service

Amritsar, April 4
After a hit performance in Chandigarh, Air Warrior Symphony Orchestra of the Indian Air Force will now mesmerise the people of Amritsar.

The concert, scheduled for April 12, is aimed at generating awareness about the defence forces by showcasing the talent of the force’s musicians.

The repertoire will include an extravagant ensemble of military fanfare, opera, pop, jazz, popular Hindi film songs and patriotic songs.

The concert is being organised at Panther Stadium in the cantonment area to facilitate attendance of maximum civil and military personnel and there will be no entry fee or passes.

Group Captain S. Rath said the two-hour performance would have an “exuberance of melody, with fusion and pop music, enthralling the audience.” An air show, with remote-controlled airplanes doing acrobatics in the air will precede the concert.

“The symphony orchestra has enchanted audience with its soul-stirring performance in all prominent cities of the country and this would be its first performance in Punjab.

It has also earned applause in foreign countries like Myanmar, Finland, France and Italy,” he said.

The Air Warrior Symphony Orchestra is based at Air Force Station, Bangalore, and it consists of 70 musicians, who play a variety of instruments.

The idea for a symphony orchestra was mooted in 2002 and it gave its maiden performance on March 11, 2003, in Kolkata.

The Indian Air Force has a total of eight bands and the first band was formed in 1944 in the North West Frontier Province, now in Pakistan.

A film on the ethos of military life will also be screened as part of the programme. “We are expecting a crowd of 8,000-10,000 people and the show will instill the feeling of patriotism among them, besides informing them about the lifestyle of defence personnel. Pamphlets about the Indian Air Force will also be distributed among the audience as part of the awareness effort,” he said.

Popular Hindi songs like “Ek main aur ek tu” will cast a spell on the audience with quality sound system and large screens put up at several places making sure that the audience enjoy every moment of the concert, he said.

The air show will begin at 6 pm and the concert has been scheduled from 7.30 pm to 9 pm.



Move to set up central varsity hailed
P.K. Jaiswar

Amritsar, April 4
The decision to set up a central university in the holy city has been hailed from all quarters. Welcoming the step, Gunbir Singh, vice-chairman of CII, said the state government was facing severe resource crunch for upgrading the education system and providing infrastructure support.

“It should provide complete political support to centrally funded, private educational facilities,” he opined, adding that the city has a great potential of becoming a nucleus for spiritual, academic studies and a complete knowledge centre.

He said Punjab required huge inflow to boost educational infrastructure and upgradation of standards of academic delivery system to meet the benchmarks at the national level. He urged that the holy city needed an Indian Institute of Technology (IIT).

Meanwhile, Amritsar Vikas Manch (AVM), led by Dr Charanjit Singh Gumtala and Prof Mohan Singh, has hailed the decision to set up the central varsity in Amritsar.

“It’s the first national-level higher institute ever sanctioned to the city post,” the duo said. “Till date, successive Congress and Akali governments in the state have meted out step- motherly treatment to the holy city,” they further alleged.

They added that Chief Minister Prakash Singh Badal should immediately acquire land at Amritsar for the project. AVM also demanded setting up of IIT & National Institute of Bio-Technology in the city.



Hand Of God
Rare surgery gives 52-yr-old tumour patient new lease of life
Our Correspondent

Amritsar, April 4
A medical team of Fortis Escorts Hospital managed to save the life of a 52-year-old woman Lakhwinder Kaur, who was suffering from rare brain tumour. The surgery lasted for around nine hours.

Lakhwinder, resident of village Dullo Nangal Baigoian was brought to the hospital in a critical condition. She was suffering from severe pain in the right eye with no vision and marked restricted movement of the right eye ball.

Dr Raj Kamal, neurosurgeon of hospital, said the patient was suffering from a large cavernous sinus (skull base) tumor on right side of her brain.

“It was a rare condition and required supersensitive handling. Conventional brain tumors are located superficially at frontal, parietal occipital or temporal (side of the head) lobe, which are easier to approach. It was a high-risk operation, as fatality rate is higher in such cases with more than 40 per cent chance of suffering from permanent disability,” he added.

Giving details of the procedure, the doctor said a high-speed cranial (related to skull) drill was used to reach the tumor by drilling the skull bone. An ‘ultrasonic aspirator’ was also used in the procedure.



Best Buy
BSNL to auction VIP mobile phone numbers
Tribune News Service

Amritsar, April 4
Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) here has decided to auction VIP numbers of mobile phones which were available on itswebsite:www.punjab.bsnl.co.in.

Stating this in a press release here on Thursday, a BSNL spokesman said those interested could also call 9417194176 to know whether their choice number was included in the fourth auction to be held on April 6.

He said that auction was open to all the subscribers of the BSNL’s cellular service and post-paid and pre-paid phones.

He said for getting registered for auction the bidders would have to send SMS: REGVAN<SPACE>10 digit mobile number for which they want to bid.

However, he added that the bidders would be charged Rs 50 per number as registration fee which would be adjusted in their final bid amount at the time of receipt of payment.



Admn invites entries for bravery awards
Our Correspondent

Amritsar, April 4
As many as 40 persons from the district would be felicitated on Independence Day for courage and exceptional work in the fields of social work, art, literature, science and technology, etc.

This was revealed by deputy commissioner Kahan Singh Pannu. He said the Punjab government had sought lists of such persons from all districts in the state.

Each selected person would be honoured with Rs 50,000, certificates, a gold medal and a shawl. Besides, special bravery awards of Rs 25,000 would be given.

The DC said the deserving candidates should submit their bio-data along with an application and 12 copies explaining their bravery acts in Punjabi and English to his office. The selected names would then be forwarded to the government.



GNDU reader gets UGC project
Our Correspondent

Amritsar, April 4
The University Grants Commission (UGC) has sanctioned a research project for Rs 5 lakh to Dr Sudha Jitender, reader in the department of Hindi, GNDU.

Dr Sudha said the project had been entitled “Aadhunik Hindi aur Punjabi kavita mein swantantarta aandolan ke bhavebhivyakti ka tulnatmak adhyayan (1857-1947)".

It would go on for three years. The research would focus on the role and contribution of Punjab in literature.



Honour for Dr Sohinder Bir
Our Correspondent

Amritsar, April 4
Chheharta Vikas Sabha has decided to felicitate Dr Sohinder Bir Singh, poet and professor at Guru Nanak Dev University for his book “Inqlaab De Bani: Shaheed Bhagat Singh”.

Prof Nirmal Singh Randhawa, patron of the Sabha said the poet would be honored with Bhagat Singh, Rajguru and Sukhdev Award-2008 during a function dedicated to the martyrs on April 6 at NRI Bhawan near Gurdwara Chheharta Sahib.

A kavi darbar would also be organised on the occasion. Rajinder Mohan Singh Chhina, honorary secretary of Khalsa College Governing Council, would be the chief guest while deputy commissioner Kahan Singh Pannu along with other dignitaries would grace the event.



DAV School bags top 3 positions
Our Correspondent

Amritsar, April 4
DAV Public School on Lawrence Road here has bagged all the top three positions in the class VIII examination in Punjab conducted by the DAV educational management, New Delhi.

Principal Neera Sharma said Deeksha Aggarwal clinched the first position, while Monil Gupta stood second and Rhythmn Sodhi third.

She said three students of the school scored above 95 per cent marks, 35 above 90 and 80 students above 85 per cent.



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