Now, ROB threatens war memorial
Deepkamal Kaur
Tribune News Service

Jalandhar, April 22
The Lyallpur Khalsa College railway overbridge ( ROB) controversy refuses to die down. Close on the heels of residents picking holes in the bridge design, the ex-servicemen are now up in arms against the PWD which wants shifting or slicing a portion off the Punjab State War Memorial for the construction work.

Terming the move as an insult to the martyrs, the ex-servicemen said they have shot off a missive to the PWD officials, asking them to redesign the ROB so that the prestigious monument is not harmed.

According to sources, the PWD had asked the sainik welfare office to either remove a part of the front portion of the memorial or shift the structure to some other place for construction of a slip road under the bridge. The department plans to widen the road in front of the memorial so that vehicles can go up to the bridge via an arm.

District sainik board vice-president Brigadier KS Dhillon said the monument has special “state” status and the ROB should not come up at the cost of destruction of the site. “The administration needs to modify the project design so that the sanctity of the place is maintained and the feelings of martyrs’ families are not hurt,” he asserted.

Retired Major General GS Sohi agrees. “This war memorial is pride of Punjab and it was not built in a day. It took 26 years to bring it to this level. The memorial has a huge hall of fame in the basement with portraits of war heroes, monuments and war insignias. These things cannot be recreated. So instead of disturbing the memorial, the PWD should look out for some engineering alternatives”, he suggested.

The plan to set up the Punjab State War Memorial was conceived in 1976 and raised in 1982. Though the site belongs to the Jalandhar Improvement Trust, its maintenance was handed over to the sainik welfare office in 1991 due to poor upkeep by the trust.

Sainik welfare deputy director Lt-Col Manmohan Singh said he too wanted that the memorial should be not disturbed. He said a similar situation had arisen at Dhaula Kuan crossing in New Delhi. “The authorities there redesigned the flyover to retain Defence Services Officers Institute (DSOI) at the same site,” he added.

However, PWD SE Ram Pal said, “No alternative plan is possible in this case. A portion of memorial has to be covered in the project.”



His collection bears stamp of history 
Amarjit Thind/TNS

Jalandhar, April 22
Philately has been a passion with Anand Mohan Singh for the past nearly seven decades and over the years he has collected more than 50,000 stamps of various shapes, sizes and denominations.

He claims to possess stamps of all countries, including some rare ones like that of King George V and King George VI.

“I first started collecting them in the 40s and my interest grew with every new possession. I still go to the philately bureau here and try to buy any new stamp that meets my fancy,” he added

Opening some of his dog-eared albums, the octogenarian displayed neatly arranged stamps that have been painstakingly pasted in old albums.

“Some of my prized possessions are related to important events related to the freedom struggle and dignitaries,” he said. There are some rare ones like those on Vande Matram, the first stamp of the national flag released on August 19, 1947, AICC Resolution Day in 1942, first Asian Games, 1951, conquest of the Mt Everest, 1953 and the 500th birth anniversary of Guru Nanak Dev, 1969.

Stamps released by the erstwhile states of Patiala and Jind also stand out in his collection.

Singh also has some rare stamps showing Mahatma Gandhi and Jawaharlal Nehru, Rajendra Prasad, Kamla Nehru, Lal Bahadur Shastri, Babu Jagjivan Ram, Chaudhary Charan Singh, K Kamraj, Syed Ahmad Khan and even Sanjay Gandhi.

He proudly shows the stamps which were first day covers released to mark the raising days of various army regiments like Skinners Horse, Sikh, Deccan Horse, the Guards, ASC etc.

Whole pages in some albums are also devoted to the wildlife series of many counties of the world. Some of the animals and plants are now on the verge of extinction, he points out. A perusal of the albums makes for interesting observations about the country and its people. Long forgotten events and personalities leap out of the pages as you relive history at the turn of every page. He, however, has some regrets that the present generation is not interested in philately. A question that haunts him is that who would look after his vast collection after him.His passion for philately, even at this age, can be gauged from the fact that he bought two stamps of yesteryears icon Madhubala just recently. “I aim to collect all stamps issued on film stars and other performing artists in the coming days,” he quipped.



RCF to dish out 300 crashworthy coaches
Dharmendra Joshi
Tribune News Service

Kapurthala, April 22
The Rail Coach Factory (RCF) has planned to manufacture 300 crashworthy coaches during the current financial year of 2008-09.

According to RCF sources, crashworthy features will be introduced in these coaches in order to improve the safety of passengers. These coaches will be capable of absorbing high-impact energy in non-passenger area of a coach at its ends while keeping the middle passenger portion safe in an accident.

Besides this, the RCF has set an even higher target to manufacture 1,550 coaches during 2008-09, which includes 150 stainless-steel coaches for Rajdhani and Shatabdi Express trains and 100 low-cost stainless steel coaches with air-spring suspension system for the first time introduction in other mail/express trains.

Meanwhile, 129 employees, including 13 officers, were awarded for their meritorious and outstanding performance during the year 2007-08 during the 53rd Railway Week celebrations at the RCF. Railway Week is observed by all zonal railways and production units to mark the occasion of introduction of first train in India on April 16, 1853.

After inaugurating the function during Rail Week celebrations by lighting of the traditional lamp, RCF GM S.K. Suri gave away awards to officials for their outstanding performances.

Addressing the audience on the occasion, Suri said the RCF made a great contribution to the nation by meeting 50 per cent of the total requirement of passenger coaches of the Indian Railways.

He complemented the RCF employees for not only achieving highest ever production of 1,480 coaches, but also achieving the highest ever growth of 12 per cent in a single year.

Suri attributed this success to the excellent team work by the officials. He also made a mention of great strides, the RCF has made in the fields of sports, culture and energy conservation. RCF senior sports officer Ajmer Singh had an honour of being one of the select 70 celebrities of India who got the privilege to carry the Olympic torch on April 17 in New Delhi, he added.

While congratulating RCF officials for their outstanding contribution, Suri exhorted RCF employees to scale new heights and achieve even higher target of 1,550 coaches set for the current year.



Job camp brings good news for 80 youths
Dharmendra Joshi
Tribune News Service

Jalandhar, April 22
In an effort to provide equal amount of job opportunities to unemployed Punjabi youth in private industries, a special job camp was organised at the district industries centre at focal point on national highway number one here today.

The job camp, may be termed as the first of its kind, was organised by the Jalandhar Chamber of Industries and Commerce at the behest of deputy commissioner Ajit Singh Pannu.

In a meeting with the chamber on April 5, Pannu urged the local industrialists to provide an equal amount of job opportunities to the Punjabi youth as they were falling easy preys to the menace of drug addiction due to unemployment.

While as many as 1,050 Punjabi youths turned up for jobs in the camp, 80 of them were selected on the spot for different works in several factories, said joint secretary of the chamber Harsh Gupta while talking to The Tribune.

Four different teams, including the chamber president Narinder Sehgal, general secretary Charanjit Singh Maingi, senior vice president Kuldeep Singh and vice president Gaman Monga as their members, were constituted to interview the youths.

Gupta said the 80 youths were selected for different jobs including technical, skilled, semi skilled, clerical and helper in several factories located in different parts of the city. The selected youths would start their work with the new employers from Tuesday itself and they had been provided with salary according to their work and qualification, he added. Applications of the remaining 970 candidates would be scrutinised and many of them would also be selected for different jobs, Gupta added. DC Ajit Singh Pannu, GA to DC Anupam Kaler and the officials from district employment generation and training department were also present at the camp.



Brothers band together for cantt poll
Tribune News Service

Jalandhar, April 22
For brothers Avinash Chander Sharma and Rajinder Sharma, the day begins with chalking out poll strategies at the breakfast table. With less than a month to go cantonment board poll, the duo, who are in the fray from ward 3 and 5, don’t want to waste a single minute.

Infact, Avinash, who is a seasoned player (had won the last poll held in 1997), has appointed his brother Subhash Sharma as covering candidate. His ward limits includes Mohalla 26, 27, 28, Kasturba Nagar, Army area from Deep Nagar barrier to Solanki Lines and Ghumar Mandi. Considering his ward as his lucky charm, Avinash said, “The poll are being held after 11 years and I expect they would give fair representation to the civilians.”

He said many times people were compelled to go back or choose longer routes for entry into the cantonment area and he would see that all board members were taken into confidence before finalising such steps.

Rajinder Sharma, who would debut his political career, maintained that he was focusing on core issues including octroi, sewerage and building registration.

“There are many issues which need to be addressed but my prime focus is on sanitation and sewerage which have been lying ignored for the past couple of years.

Though I am contesting for the first time, I am sure about my victory,” Rajinder added. When the duo was asked about any plans to join some political party, their answer was no.



Dinning Den
Youngsters’ headquarters
Kusum Arora/TNS

Jalandhar, April 22
An evening in Jalandhar sans a visit to “Headquarters,” a famous hang out among youngsters, means you have surely missed out something. The multi-cuisine restaurant known for its quality food has a lot to offer right from quick service to an attractive ambience.

Popularly known as HQ in the youngster’s lingo, the place attracts city residents with its friendly environment, interiors and mouth watering dishes. Started in 1999, the restaurant is almost a hit.

The USP of the hang out is its special vegetable grilled sandwiches, chicken in chef’s special sauce, momos, onion kulcha and much more. Name any sumptuous treat of HQ and the youngsters as well as oldies have reasons to tell why the place is a must for them.

Talking to The Tribune, Aakshi and Henna, students of Apeejay School, said, “We often visit this place, whether it is a birthday party or a contributory party HQ is our first choice. Moreover the place has a lot of food variety.”

Witnessing the huge response, HQ owner Rajan Sidhu has come up with an idea of launching a HQ chain in Punjab. “Very soon an HQ outlet would be opened at Lawrence road in Amritsar followed by the same in some selected cities.

Before it we you would soon find another HQ near Pizza Hut in Jalandhar,” he said, adding that the city foodies would soon get an all Chinese and Thai restaurant in the coming days.

Clientele manager Joseph Kapoor said, “We are proud of the fact that not only youngsters but even families love to our place daily.”



Young World
Contests, rallies mark Earth Day
Tribune News Service

Jalandhar, April 22
The week-long celebrations to mark Earth Day concluded at CT Public School with poster making and slogan writing contest. The topic for competition was “Be eco-friendly”.

The students from classes IV to VIII visited Greater Kailash and distributed pamphlets with message “Save water-It’s precious” to the residents.

They also gave tips to on saving water and after effects of water crisis. School principal Lakhvinder Kaur encouraged the staff and the students to protect earth by growing more trees and avoiding pollution.

The students of Apeejay School, Rama Mandi, observed Earth Day by discussing issues like pollution, deforestation, decreasing water table, war, terrorism and violence. Varsha of class VI dressed up like earth and tiny tots presented a song to display their love and concern for the blue planet.

A special talk and painting competition was organised by the NGO Pahal at the Government Senior Secondary School Kudowal here on Tuesday to mark the 190th Earth Day. Speaking on the occasion, president of the NGO professoer Lakhbir Singh said 190 nations across the globe are putting up their best efforts for establishing sustainable environmental conditions. Protests have widely been organised by colleges and universities against the deterioration of the environment.

The NGO planted 180 saplings of plants like Neem, Jamun, Reetha, Dek etc. on the occasion.

Meanwhile, Ravi, Salinder and Gurmukh Singh won the first, second and third positions, respectively, in the painting competition.

Principal Ravinder Singh, Hind Ratan awardee S. Gurmeet Singh Malhi, Mohan Lal, Jaswinder Singh and sarpanch Santosh Kumari were the others present on the occasion.

Golden jubilee

St Joseph’s Convent School celebrated its golden jubilee on Sunday. Punjab governor Gen S.F. Rodrigues addressed the students asking them to be prepared for education reforms.

The cultural show began with a prayer dance and was followed by a musical play “Cindy” highlighting the story of a girl who aspired to be a singer but remained burdened due to household tasks. Finally, she comes across a teacher who moulds her to achieve her aim.

Bishop of Jalandhar diocese Anil Couto, Sister Edward, and principal Sister Sophie addressed the gathering highlighting the mission of the school and its progress over the past 50 years.

Convocation held

St Soldier College of Education organised its convocation in which 200 students were conferred degrees by Punjab education minister Punjab Dr Upinderjit Kaur. Principal Dr Alka Gupta presented the annual report and a cultural programme was also presented.

Parents’ orientation

MGN Public School, Adarsh Nagar, organised an orientation session for the parents of nursery students. Councillor Manmeet Sawhney told parents about ill effects them of fast-food and asked parents to spend quality time with their children.

Paper reading

An inter-house English paper-reading competition for classes VI to VIII was held at Police DAV Public School. As many as 24 students competed and showcased their reading skills. From class VIII Somali Vij won the first prize, while Anandita and Prajwal were declared second and third, respectively. Similarly in class VII, Meenakshi, Priya and Aman Virdi were declared winners, where Sejal, Shweta and Shweta Sharma from class VI were adjudged best.

Grandparents’ day

Eklavya School, Model Town, observed grandparents day to explain students about their importance. The students welcomed their grandparents by applying tikka and cards. The sparkling kids recited a rhyme “Grand Pa Darling” to show affection for their family. The grandparents too displayed their talent through quiz on Bollywood and tongue twisters.

Hobby classes

BD Arya Girls’ College organised “Dhamal”, a learning programme for students from 14 to 19 years of age. The students were given tips on dance, fabric painting, block printing, snacks, e-cards, personality development, communication skills and cosmetology. Nearly 150 girls attended the programme.

Awareness event

NSS volunteers of Guru Nanak Dev University College, Basti Nau, visited Nangal Shama village to aware residents about HIV. Unit in charge S.M.S. Dhall accompanied the students.

Biotech workshop

The department of biotechnology, Lyallpur Khalsa College, has received the sanction from the UGC to hold a workshop on molecular technology.

Head of the department Dr Arun Dev Sharma said the 12-day workshop would focus on role of rDNA technology in transgenic plants, screening strategies for recombinants and bio-informatics.

Career counselling

The Delhi Public School organised a career counselling programme for the students of class XI. Career counsellors Gursimran Kaur and Roma Arora guided the students to choose their career by choice and not by chance.

They gave a presentation and laid stress on the need to choose the career according to aptitude, personality and interest.

School director Dr Augustine Isaac and principal Asha Kumar addressed the parents.

Graduation ceremony

Tiny tots of St Soldier Divine Public School, Mithu Basti, were awarded certificates by vice-chairperson Sangeeta Chopra on their graduation ceremony. A cultural programme was also presented on the occasion.

Campus placements

Shapporji and Pallonji Co Ltd has selected 23 pre-final year students of DAV Institute of Engineering and Technology.

During the training period the students would get a package of Rs 2.88 lakh per annum and would join the company in June 2009.

Infosys BPO Ltd conducted campus interviews at CT Group of Institutions, Shahpur, and selected 35 students as process executive at a package of Rs 1.8 lakh per annum. The students underwent aptitude test, group discussions, personal and telephonic interviews during the selection process.



Biz Buzz
Rural India to go mobile with Gaon Chalo

Jalandhar: Reliance Communications Limited, on Tuesday, announced their special product - Gaon Chalo - for rural India. With the customised offer, the new product will touch the lives of 72 percent of the people who live in the countryside where telephony is yet to penetrate. Customers can go mobile for just Rs 49 with the help of new activated pre-paid SIM card. This price is 50 percent less than the cost to go mobile in urban areas. Customers are free to choose any validity, talk-time or tariff propositions on this card.

People will also have the option of buying a new pre-paid SIM card with lifetime validity for just Rs 249. Apart from this, the customers will also receive talk time worth Rs 75 which would be disbursed in easy installments over the next few months. — TNS



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