L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Pay Rs 3.78 cr, tax sleuths tell mall contractor
Shveta Pathak
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 20
In what could be said to be the biggest case of tax evasion by works contractors this year, the excise and taxation department has imposed Rs 4.34 crore as tax and penalty on two contractors here.

Detecting gross understatement of income, the department served a tax demand notice (TDN) and a challan, requiring the contractor of a leading upcoming mall near the Jalandhar bypass to pay Rs 3.78 crore as tax and penalty. A sum of Rs 56.48 lakh of tax penalty was imposed on a local contractor.

Officials found that the contractor of the mall had understated his income in the IT return filed for the year 2006-07. On suspecting concealment of income, officials conducted investigations that lasted for almost three months.

“The income was understated in the annual return filed by him on November 20, 2007, and we were able to verify it from various sources, including purchase transactions conducted by the contractor, after which we imposed the tax and a penalty of almost 200 per cent on him,” said assistant excise and taxation commissioner H.P.S. Ghotra.

The department today served a TDN and a challan on the contractor who would be required to deposit Rs 3.78 crore now.

In the other case, the department imposed tax and penalty to the tune of Rs 56.48 lakh on a contractor for the assessment year 2005-06.

Department officials said they would keep a close eye on assessees involved in high-value transactions like property and related business and various other areas.



Recarpeting, did you say?
Kanchan Vasdev
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 20
Amid allegations of the use of substandard material for recarpeting roads, the layer of a newly laid road has corroded in Ward No. 39. A stretch of the road near the Civil Hospital was recarpeted only yesterday and it developed potholes this morning.

Shopkeepers complained to the area councillor, Sanjay Talwar, and senior deputy mayor, Parveen Bansal.

They reached the spot and inspected the road. Bansal said he would inform the mayor and get the work inspected by the authorities concerned.

He said they would get the samples collected in the presence of shopkeepers and get those tested from a laboratory to find out if adequate bitumen was used.

“We will take up the matter with the higher authorities to set up a special wing to test samples of such disputed works,” Bansal said.

Talwar said though the junior engineer concerned stated that the layer of bitumen had given away due to rain that lashed the city last night, the quantity of bitumen used was much less than required as per the norms.

He said the gravel was coming off easily. “Had it been due to rain, the condition would not have been so bad. It is clearly because of the use of poor material,” Talwar said.

“The recarpeting of road was a long pending demand of shopkeepers of the area. And finally when the work started, it was given shoddy treatment. The shopkeepers are disappointed,” he said.

The recarpeting work, from Chadda pulli to Jagraon bridge, worth Rs 40 lakh was entrusted with Ceigall Builders.

The XEN, P.K. Chaddha, when contacted, said he did not know anything about the matter. He said he had been on leave.

MC commissioner Vikas Partap said he had ordered an inquiry into the allegations. He said he had assigned the XEN to inquire into the matter and submit a report soon. 

No big deal, says contractor

Ramneek Sehgal, the contractor, said the problem arose due to the rain last evening. The bitumen gave away. He said he had repaired the 100-m stretch of the road by the evening. “It is a very small thing to happen to a road and we have already re-laid the entire stretch. We will not charge the MC for it,” he said, adding that the entire episode was a political drama. 



Squall disrupts power supply
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 20
City residents have heaved a sigh of relief following intermittent rain that dropped the maximum temperature to 21.7 degrees today. Weathermen have predicted that the weather would remain cloudy with partial rain and thundershowers in the city and the adjoining areas in the next 24 hours.

Rajita Grover, who has asthma, said the rain had provided comfort to those suffering from respiratory ailments. “Dust particles in the air had aggravated my problem,” she said.

Meanwhile, power supply was disrupted at Gurdev Nagar and parts of Sarabha Nagar last night due to the snapping of a feeder line following high velocity winds.

A farmer of Dhat village, Surinder Singh, said the rain would benefit farmers in view of the paddy sowing season ahead. 



Clash over land leaves 7 injured
Our Correspondent

Sahnewal, May 20
Seven persons are reported to have been injured in a clash that took place between two rival groups at Sahnewal Khurd last evening.

Sukhbir Singh, Duriyodhan Singh and Gurnam Kaur received minor injuries and are undergoing treatment at CMC Hospital. The condition of Bhupinder Kaur, mother of Sukhbir Singh, is reported to be serious.Members of the other group -Simarjit Singh, Malkiat Singh and Gurpreet Kaur - are reported to be admitted to the Civil Hospital in Ludhiana.

A piece of land is said to be the bone of contention between the groups.

According to Sukhbir Singh they had bought land of a Canada-based relative of the other group on lease for 10 years. But the latter was putting pressure on them to end the lease and hand over charge so as to illegally acquire the land.

Four months back too the two parties were involved in a clash. Sukhbir Singh said yesterday they were attacked with sharp-edged weapons and sticks by Simarjit Singh, Malkiat Singh and Gurpreet Kaur, resulting in injuries to his grandfather, grandmother and mother.

SHO Gurjit Singh said a case on the statement of Sukhbir Singh and another on the statement of Simarjit Singh had been registered under sections 322,324,148 and 149 of I.P.C.



Tenant flees with Rs 5 lakh
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 20
A tenant in the Salem Tabri area decamped with Rs 5 lakh and gold ornaments worth Rs 2 lakh here last night.

The theft came to light in the morning when the landlord, Pawan Kumar, woke up and found the almirah open.

Pawan, who works in a mobile accessory shop, had rented a part of his house to Shukla, who lived with his wife and brother-in-law. Pawan did not know the first name of his tenant. Last night they had dinner together and Pawan slept without bolting the door.

When he woke up in the morning, he found the almirah ransacked and ornaments and cash missing. When he went to call his tenants, they were also missing.



Govt staff fear violence; say no to poll duty
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 20
The incidents of booth capturing and violence during the recently concluded zila parishad and panchayat samiti elections have not only shaken the authorities, but have also sent shock waves among employees of various government offices deputed at polling stations across the district for the ensuing panchayat 

A large number of employees, particularly teachers, have refused to join the election duty on the pretext of some or the other problem.

A teacher on the condition of anonymity said, "One of the contestants from Sidhma Khurd told me to either favour him during the elections or be prepared for thrashing. I have refused to join the duty on medical grounds as I fear thrashing by his goons."

"A number of violence cases were reported during the previous panchayat elections when supporters of political parties went on rampage against each other and innocent officers were beaten in the clashes. So, I have decided not to participate in the ensuing elections," said a government school teacher.

According to an electoral officer, due to the fear of losing, supporters of candidates resort to booth capturing and violence.

This can even harm electoral officer if there is lack of security and that is the reason, the employees abstain from being deputed at counting centres.

Despite repeated attempts, no official responded to the matter and said to be busy in the preparation for the elections.



Village celebrates Kanwaldeep’s return
Mahesh Sharma

Mandi Ahmedgarh, May 20
Sports lovers and residents of the area are thrilled that hockey star Kanwaldeep Singh of Assi Kalan village, near here, who had been banned to play for India earlier, was yesterday allowed to play in the national team by the chairman of the ad hoc committee for Indian hockey.

“We are happy that the committee, led by chairman Aslam Sher Khan, remembered Kanwaldeep who had donned the colours of the country at various international hockey events,” says Aman Deep, a sports lover.

Jiwan Singh and Malkiat Kaur, parents of Kanwaldeep, hope that he lives up to the expectations of millions of Indians who had wished him a bright future after seeing him perform during tournaments held in Australia and Germany in 2003.

Though they aspired to train their second son to play hockey, he had shown little interest due to the indifference of the authorities concerned.

Kanwaldeep had bagged around 12 gold medals and several silver medals at state and national levels, but he was banned following an altercation with a referee a few years ago.

The Tribune had highlighted the plight of his family and the apathy of the government. A large number of sports fans, including NRIs, had come forward to felicitate him. Cash awards worth lakhs were presented to him by some organisations.



Nanda’s book 'Baran Gharan Di Rani' out
Anshu Seth
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 20
Winner of the Preet Lari Award J.B.S. Nanda released his new book "Baran Gharan Di Rani", an anthology of short stories.

Having won accolades for his earlier writings "Kusumbran Chuk-Chuk Hari" and "Rama Nahin Mukadi Phulkari" wherein Nanda compared endless woes of women with ‘phulkari’, the author once again succeeds in touching the nerve of his readers.

The book is a compilation of chapters from the life of common man with which readers can identify themselves.

“Baran Gharan Di Rani” is a portrayal of a woman, who, with her multifaceted personality, gets the coveted title of Rani. It is the tragic end that leaves every mother, who lost her young son to wars and revolts, speechless.

Similarly, dealing with dilemmas of the teaching fraternity and daily passengers are stories “Ik Aitwar” and “Zindagi Di Paribhasha” that point towards dexterity of life.

In “Bulla Aje Nahin Mareya” the author narrates the story of his meeting with a wandering sage who sings the couplets of Bulle Shah. The author terms his meeting with the sage as 'the rendezvous with life'. Nanda reveals that most of the anecdotes in his stories and novels are based upon real-life incidents. 



Scarcity of coins

Metal coins, which were readily available earlier, seem to have disappeared from the market. As an alternative, vendors in the city have started using products like sweet candies, toffees etc in place of coins thereby increasing the sale value of these unwanted products.

But, whenever a customer offers the same sweet candies or toffees to a vendor in lieu of coins, he refuses to accept the same. When a trend of exchanging goods in lieu of money has started, then both, customers and vendors, should follow it.

The Government of India should take measures to overcome the scarcity of coins or should stop making the currency and revive barter system.

Ravi Chander Garg, Ludhiana



Two thieves arrested
Tribune News Service

Khanna, May 20
The Khanna police arrested two more thieves of a gang that was involved in a large number of thefts in various villages of Punjab yesterday. The accused — Deepak and Kapil Bhagat — were arrested from Mohanpur village. They belong to villages in Bihar.

The police has recovered electric wires, motor wires, 32 bore pistol, five live cartridges and a knife from them. Earlier also, two cases had been registered against them at the Sadar police station under Sections 25, 54 and 59 of the Arms Act. This gang was involved in a number of thefts in Sahnewal, Kohara and Jandli Mangli villages too.

The police officials investigating the matter said one of the five thieves was caught by people of Bhammadi village on May 13. The villagers saw smoke emanating from one of the fields of Gursewak Singh. When they reached the fields, along with the farmer, they saw that some migrant labourers were burning some electric wires which had taken out from tube well motors. While four of them fled from the scene after firing gunshots in the air, one of them— Surinder of Motihar village in Bihar— was overpowered by the villagers. The accused then revealed the names of his accomplices. 



From Schools & Colleges
Students do school proud
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 20
Class XII students of Sacred Heart Higher Secondary School have brought laurels to the school. All 64 students, who appeared for the examination in all three streams of the first batch, have passed it. Roohani Sharma topped in non-medical with 91 per cent marks while Sugandha Singh topped the commerce stream with 78 per cent marks.

Awareness Programme: To make the students and their parents aware of the rising problem of asthma, Kundan Vidya Mandir, Civil Lines, organised a programme in the school auditorium here today. Students of Classes V to VII attended the programme.

Guest of honour Dr Jagdeep Whig, vice-principal and head of the chest department of the DMC, was accorded a floral welcome by principal of the school S.C. Saxena and in charges of various sections. He was accompanied by school health officer Dr Achla Gupta, who spoke about bronchial asthma and educated the students on its causes, prevention and treatment. Dr Jagdeep Whig spoke about its general diagnosis, management and prevention. The principal thanked the speakers and presented a memento to Dr Whig.

Pool party: Spring Dale Senior Secondary School, Sherpur, organised a pool party on the school premises. The place decorated with colourful umbrellas, balls, fish and chairs. A dance floor was also set up.

Students of nursery and LKG had a lot of fun playing water games.

Rain added to their delight. The tiny tots in cool summer wear walked the ramp.

Results: Nursery: Summer Prince-Krrish Punj; runner-up-Krrish Thukral; Summer Princess-Gunn Maihotra; runner-up-Parneet.

LKG: Summer Prince-Karanvir; runner-up- Sanmeet; Summer Princess-Janvi; runner-up-Shiny.


NSS camp: A 10 day NSS camp on the theme “Healthy youth for healthy India” was organised at Guru Nanak National College here.

Principal Narinder Singh Sidhu advised the volunteers to do manual work in everydaylife.Managing committee general secretary Prof Balwant Singh Pangli advised the students to make optimum use of their talent and capabilities, and try to become self-dependent.

The participants were taught fabric and pot painting by Prabhleen Kaur, a student of fine arts. They were also taught the art of making greeting cards and posters. Programme officer Harwinder Kaur enlightened the volunteers with the aims and objectives of the NSS. — OC



Ludhiana teachers elected to IPSA
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 20
Dr S. S. Nagra, professor and head, department of livestock production and management, Guru Angad Dev Veterinary and Animal Sciences University, has been elected the vice-president of the Indian Poultry Science Association in recently concluded elections.

Dr Manish Chatley, associate professor, department of livestock products technology, has been elected the executive member of the association. 



PAU becomes part of Khorana Programme
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 20
Punjab Agricultural University has been included as a co-member of the prestigious Khorana programme. University of Wisconsin-Madison (UW) had launched a scientific exchange programme with India in honour of Nobel Laureate Dr Har Gobind Khorana in January this year.

Sumita Kapoor, an MSc student of the department of food, science and technology, was offered an internship award. Sumita is planning to join the mandatory orientation fellowship programme on May 26. She will get $4,000 to cover room, insurance, meals and other living expenses under the fellowship.

PAU VC Dr Manjit Singh Kang said, "It is a great opportunity for PAU and Sumita.” He advised her to do her best and come back well-equipped with knowledge to serve the university and Punjab. 



50 examined at camp
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, May 20
A fortnight-long neuropathy camp, being organised by the Sarb Dharam Jagriti Manch at Guru Amar Das Dispensary in Salem Tabri, commenced with the examination of 50 patients on the first day. The camp was inaugurated by Sajjan Singh Birdi, Vijay Danav and area councillor Prem Sharma.

A team of doctors, comprising Dr Mukesh Kochar and Dr R.K., conducted the check-up of the patients and rendered follow-up advice.



Chandigarh, Mohali  register win
Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, May 20
Hosts Chandigarh and Mohali registered victories over Amritsar and Zone A team, respectively, on the basis of the first innings lead during the Punjab State Under-16 Years Tournament for M.L. Markan Trophy 2008-09 here yesterday.

Chandigarh pipped Amritsar as they got 17 run lead to win the match being held at the Sector 16 cricket stadium while Zone A could put on 202 for 7 in the allotted 95 overs in reply to Mohali’s first innings 308 all out in 77.5 overs.

Earlier, in reply to Amritsar’s 292 for 7 in allotted 95 overs in the first innings, Chandigarh put on 309 for 5  in the stipulated quota of overs thus, made  17 runs to win  the match.

Resuming from overnight score of 13 for 1 in 10 overs, Chandigarh crossed the target with Vaibhav Garg’s 109 off 168, slamming 12 boundaries. Shubham Mahajan (67 in 140 balls) and Hitesh Bhutani (61 n o off 84) were the other remarkable  contributors.

Vinay Chaudhary chipped in three for 130 for Amritsar being followed by Kamal Passi, who took one for 84.

Chandigarh won the match on the first innings lead.

In the second match between Mohali and Zone A at YPS grounds, Mohali, Zone A resumed their innings from overnight score of 43 for 3 and scored 202 runs for the loss of 7 wickets in the allotted 95 overs. With this, Mohali took the lead of 106 runs from Zone A.

Mahavir Singh was the highest scorer with his 76-run knock while Harjit Singh chipped in 49 runs and Harpreet Singh remained unbeaten on 26 runs.

Sumit Agnihotri was the wrecker-in-chief, claiming four for 67. In the second innings, Mohali team was playing on 46 at the loss of three wickets in 22 overs.

Brief score:

Amritsar (1st Innings): 292 for 7 in 95 overs (Jagdeep Singh 112 n o, Kamal Passi 67, Mohit Handa 27, Beer Karan Goel 3 for 97, Naveen Dhiman 3 for 77). Chandigarh (1st Innings): 309 for 5 in 95 overs (Vaibhav Garg 109, Shubham Mahajan 67, Hitesh Bhutani 61 n o, Jaskaran Singh 30, Vinay Chaudhary 3 for 130, Kamal Passi 1 for 84).

Mohali (1st Innings): 308 all out in 77.5 overs (Birkanwar Singh 111, Subeer Hayer 53, Sourav Chopra 68, Princepal Singh 3 for 111, Amandeep 3 for 71, Shahbaz 2 for 64).

Zone A (1st Innings): 202 for 7 in allotted 95 overs (Mahavir Singh 76, Harjit Singh 49, Harpreet Singh 26 n o, Sumit Agnihotri 4 for 67, Manish 1 for 51, Birkanwar 1 for 15).

Mohali (2nd Innings): 46 for 3 in 22 overs (Harjit Singh 13 n o, Harpreet 4 n o, Sherbar 8, Satwinder 9, Sumit Agnihotri 2 for 16).



Softball tourney from May 24
Our Sports Reporter

Ludhiana, May 20
Ludhiana will play host to the 10th Punjab State Softball Championship for sub-junior boys and girls to be organised here at Ramgarhia Educational Complex, Miller Ganj, on May 24 and 25.

According to a press note issued today by P.N. Passi, honorary secretary, Punjab Softball Association, players born on or after January 1, 1994, are eligible to take part in this championship.

Interested players are advised to submit roster forms in duplicate along with age proof, certificate and one passport-sized photograph with the secretary at Ludhiana one day before the commencement of the event.



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