L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Flood Fear
Sutlej swelling, but no bundh repair yet
Kanchan Vasdev
Tribune News Service

Dhulewal (Ludhiana), June 15
With monsoon hitting the region and the water level rising in the Sutlej, thousands of villagers living along the Dhussi bundh are fearing floods, but the district administration is yet to start work on the strengthening of bundh.

While the rains are here, no repair work seems to have been undertaken as the drainage department has only moved files to demand Rs 2.27 crore for strengthening studs and spurs.

The administration has expressed its inability to sanction the amount citing cash crunch as reason. It has asked the drainage department to do with one third of the amount, which is yet to be released. The monsoon has arrived early this year catching departments napping.

Administration and drainage officials have allayed fears of villagers stating that no serious floods have taken place since 1993, but villagers claim that even minor overflowing of water or seepage from cracks in the bandh is enough to inundate villages.

A survey by the Tribune team of various villages along the bandh revealed that villages situated near vulnerable sites include Dhulewal, Sainsowal, Banhewal and Ghumana, near Machhiwara.

Residents of Dhulewal, which has been termed as a vulnerable site by the district administration, said after the floods in 1988, the government spent crores of rupees on erecting spurs and studs, but no maintenance was carried out by successive governments.

‘‘Almost every year we move our household items. The only reason we stay in the village is because of our agricultural land. Otherwise we would have shifted,’’ said villagers, who live in kutcha houses, fearing damage to property by floods.

‘‘During monsoon, officers start making rounds of Dhussi, but nothing is done. I have not witnessed any repair for many years,’’ said a villager.

Officials of the drainage department, preferring anonymity, said Dhulewal alone required Rs 25 lakh. ‘‘We have written to the district administration.

We are supposed to be through with repairs by June 30 every year, but with the grant no where in sight, it does not seem possible,’’ the official said, stating that only 24,000 cusecs of water was flowing through the river which was much below the danger mark.



Rain leaves roads waterlogged
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 15
The first showers of monsoon today left roads in the city waterlogged. Many low-lying residential areas were inundated, throwing life out of gear.

The waterlogging exposed the preparedness of the local civic body as the storm water sewerage system proved insufficient to drain rainwater.

Residents had to wade through water at several places. Areas like Damoria Bridge, Sargodha Colony, Haibowal and Chander Nagar were the worst affected as streets were flooded with rainwater. Some areas were waterlogged till this evening.

At Haibowal, knee-deep water made it difficult for residents to move on roads. They faced a similar situation after the rain yesterday. They said being a Sunday today, MC workers had not cleaned the mesh of manholes meant for draining rainwater.

The residents of Ghumar Mandi, Cheema Chowk, Dholewal road, Gill Chowk, Upkar Nagar, New Deep Nagar, Civil Lines, Kitchlu Nagar and Dandi Swami road criticised the preparation of the civic authorities to check flooding during rains.

They claimed that everytime it rained, they had to suffer. ‘‘We cannot venture out of our houses due to waterlogging. But nobody cares. If drains are cleaned properly, such a situation would not arise,’’ Gurmeet Singh, a resident of Civil Lines, said.

The colonies in the old city, including Karimpura Bazar, Street Mansa Ram, Field Ganj, Kesar Ganj Chowk, Vishwakarma Chowk, Chaura Bazar, Ghanta Ghar, Lakkar Bazar, Ashok Nagar, Janakpuri, Partap Chowk and Sunder Nagar were also waterlogged.

The MC will have to be alert to check the spread of diseases due to stagnant water.

Children, meanwhile, had a good time. They were seen splashing in puddles.



Trees, power cables uprooted
Mahesh Sharma

Mandi Ahmedgarh, June 15
Heavy rain and storm brought respite from heat last night, but at the same time wreaked havoc. The strong wind threw life out of gear. It blew away roofs, uprooted trees and damaged power and telephone cables.

While intermittent showers brought cheer to farmers, residents faced difficulties due to the large-scale damage.

Several walls or portions of old buildings could not endure the impact of the wind and rain. However, no loss of life was reported.

A large number of trees on roads leading to Raikot, Payal, Malerkotla, Ludhiana and Jodhan were uprooted last night, affecting traffic.

The authorities concerned could not immediately remove the trees, but some branches were taken by slum dwellers and others.

Power supply and telephone cables were also damaged at several places. Poles were uprooted or got bent due to the wind. Linemen of the PSEB and the telephone department were busy since morning in the repair work and restored power supply by afternoon.



Murder Bid
SSP told to probe afresh
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 15
The DIG of Ludhiana has asked the SSP, Khanna, to inquire if a family of Bore village had been falsely booked for attempting to murder a woman. DIG Ishwar Singh gave these directions to the SSP on an application filed by Amar Singh of Bore village.

Amar Singh claimed that his daughter-in-law Rajinder Kaur had falsely accused his son Avtar Singh of trying to kill her by giving her poison. He claimed that Rajinder Kaur suffered from chronic depression and was on medication.

He said she took an overdose of medicine following which Avtar and his daughter took her to hospital. Later, her brother lodged a complaint against them.

The police even booked Prithipal Singh, the second son of Amar Singh, who was not staying with them.

He said the daughter of Avtar and Rajinder was a witness to the entire episode in which her mother took overdose, but the police did not give any value to her statement.



Ancient coins a passion with this scholar
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Hira Singh with his collection of coins
Hira Singh with his collection of coins. — Photo by Inderjeet Verma

Ludhiana, June 15
In a classic case of hobby turned into a passion, Hira Singh, a student of PAU, carrying on his doctoral research in vegetable science, has piled up a collection of over 2,000 coins from 50 countries across the globe in his kitty.

He has some very precious coins belonging to the Ranjit Singh era and the British Raj. Interestingly, his collection has coins, which are not identifiable to any period in history, at least, not to him. He is looking out for experts to guide him.

Singh, belonging to a sleepy village called Bhopal in Mansa district does not know when the legacy from his grandmother took the shape of a passion. "These coins are my prized possession as they have been gifted by my grandmother. I was only 10 years old when my grandmother, Bhagwan Kaur, gifted her collection to me before she died in 1996," he said.

Though, she had nothing to do with numismatics but the fetish for varied coins grew on her and she started collecting antique coins. Hira Singh, currently, is heavily short on space to store his increasing collection at his room in Hostel Number VII.

This obsession of collecting the ancient coins led him undertake journeys for finding people, all around, who could help him, with coins. He said, "Be it foreigners or locals, living at distant villages, across the country, I met every one, I could, during my unending pursuit of coin collection."

Narrating one such incident he said, "One farmer in a village in Haryana told my veterinary doctor friend that he has a collection of old coins. My friends called me and I immediately set off for my journey. I cracked a deal with him."

Showing his collection, he said , "I have got ancient Taka, coins of Bahawalpur state (1940), coin contemporary to Madhav Rao shinde dated 1860 and many more coins of foreign countries." He further said, “I have many coins the writing of which I can not discern. I need some expert, who can actually tell me how old these coins are?”

Singh also showed one-rupee coins of year starting from 1850 till 2007. “I am trying to find coins of around ten years that I have missed in the series.”

Singh is a contributor to Punjabi dailies and has become a source of inspiration for many students of his village, where the literacy rate is the lowest in the state.



3 die in accident
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 15
Three persons travelling in a Maruti Omni van were killed in a road accident near Mullanpur this evening. They were going to Ludhiana when the van crashed head-on into a bus of Orbit Transport coming from the opposite direction.



Council Polls
Congress announces 13 candidates
Our Correspondent

Mandi Gobindgarh, June 15
The Congress, at a meeting attended by local MLA and member of the All-India Congress Committee Sadhu Singh Dharamsot, today finalised the first list of candidates to contest the elections from 13 wards of the A-class municipal council of Mandi Gobindgarh.

The meeting was presided over by district Congress chief Lakhbir Singh Rai and youth Congress district president Sandeep Singh Ball. Both secretaries of the PPCC Harinder Singh Bhambri and Dr Joginder Singh Maini also participated in the discussion for the selection of the candidates.

The list of the party candidates is as under:

Ward No. 1 Gurbax Singh Rally; ward No. 3 Raj Rani; ward No. 4 Suresh Kumar Bably; ward No. 5 Sandeep Singh Ball; ward No. 6 Chinda Ram; ward No. 7 Harmeet Kaur; ward No. 9 Jagmeet Singh Sahota (outgoing council chief); ward No. 12 Dr Satya Rani; ward No. 13 Shushama Kakar; ward No. 14 Randhir Singh Happy; ward No. 17 (former council chief and treasuer PPC) Joginderpal Singla; ward No. 18 Dr Dawinder Mangat; ward No. 19 Kiran Mittal.



Organise workshops for reporters to avoid litigation: Expert
Mahesh Sharma

Mandi Ahmedgarh, June 15
Regretting that editors of most main newspapers were facing court cases due to slip-ups of their field reporters, Vijay Chopra, a veteran journalist and chief editor, Hind Samachar Group, advocated that the managements of various newspapers should organise workshops for reporters occasionally, to avoid unnecessary litigation and embarrassment.

Chopra was talking to Ludhiana Tribune after presiding over a function to inaugurate a cowshed at Mahadev Mandir Gaushala in Payal, near here, today.

"Instead of wasting time and energy in litigation, the managements should organise workshops for their stringers and other field staff," argued Chopra ruing that people had started seeking a 'magic wand' in hands of journalists and wanted to get their work done by creating pressure through newspapers and TV channels. Filing stories without evidence and version of both parties had weakened position of the newspapers, said Chopra.

"As people have lost faith in legislators and bureaucrats, they try to find solace in the media as judicial procedure is slow besides being expensive," asserted Chopra.

Earlier, Chopra urged the representatives of various social and religious organisations of the area to join hands to protect lives of animals in general and cows in particular.

Naresh Garg Mintoo and her mother Surinder Kumari, who had contributed Rs 5 lakh for a proposed cowshed, were felicitated by the organisers.




Lawmakers or lawbreakers?

Very often it is seen that people who have been elected by us to make and enforce law are more habitual of breaking them. At times they lead lawbreakers from the front and mobilise like-minded people to break laws and harass the public.

The recent shooting of a constable in UP was an extreme example. Such incidents start at the lower level, like the one that took place in Ghumar Mandi. The councillor who was very much a part of a law-enforcing agency stood against it.

Rather then pacifying the shopkeepers to help them in a legal manner he opted to disturb the peaceful atmosphere of Ludhiana by blocking the road. Such persons who have no concern for the public should be severely punished or they would reach the level of shooting and killing someone someday.

Madan, Ludhiana

Readers are invited to mail letters (not more than 200 words) at "ludhiana@tribunemail.com" or post the same to The Tribune, 1, 2 Improvement Trust Building, Badaur House, Clock Tower, Ludhiana.



Bus driver, conductor beat up passenger, booked
Tribune News Service

Khanna, June 15
A bus driver and conductor of Jhajj Bus Service, Sirhind, have been booked for beating a resident of Ludhiana over a petty issue.

The passenger, identified as Bhupinder Singh, a resident of Bhai Randhir Singh Nagar, boarded the bus from Mohali to Ludhiana last evening. The incident took place at around 8 pm when the bus halted for a few minutes at the Khanna bus stand. Bhupinder requested the driver to stop the bus for a few more minutes as his co-passenger had not boarded the bus.

The driver and the conductor allegedly abused him and beat him up. Co-passengers came forward and saved him. They also reported the matter to the police.

The police has booked the driver, Ajaib Singh, and conductor Gurmail Singh, both residents of Fatehgarh Sahib. They were booked under Sections 295-A, 323, 341, 506 and 34 of the IPC.



Tribune Impact
National institute of studies may be set up afterall
K.S. Chawla

Ludhiana, June 15
Hopes for the establishment of the National Institute of Studies at Guru Nanak Dev University, Amritsar, have revived with the expert committee recommending the establishment of an institute rather than a centre of excellence. The expert committee was appointed by the University Grant Commission (UGC) under the chairmanship of Dr G.K. Chadha, former vice-chancellor of the Jawaharlal Nehru University and member of economy advisory council of the Prime Minister, to study the proposal for the establishment of the National Institute of Studies in Guru Granth Sahib.

Dr Manmohan Singh during his visit to Amritsar while participating in the 400th year celebration of installation of Guru Granth Sahib at Harmander Sahib, in September 2004, had announced that a National Institute of Studies would be established at Amritsar to mark the centenary celebrations.

The Union HRD Ministry and the UGC had organised seminars and brainstorming sessions to deliberate on the issue and had made unanimous recommendation to the HRD Ministry for the establishment of an autonomous National Institute of Studies in Guru Granth Sahib on Guru Nanak Dev University campus at Amritsar. However, the finance ministry had rushed the proposal and asked for the establishment of a centre of excellence for studies in Guru Granth Sahib.

The Tribune had raised the issue in these columns and Tarlochan Singh, member of the Rajya Sabha and former chairman; National Commission for Minorities, had raised the issue in the Rajya Sabha.

Following a report in The Tribune, Prof Prithipal Singh Kapoor, former pro-vice chancellor, Guru Nanak Dev University, and a renowned Sikh scholar, had also taken up the matter with the UGC and raised objections about inclusion of some members in the expert committee setup by the UGC.

The Chadha committee examined the entire proposal afresh and the committee also invited the vice-chancellor of Guru Nanak Dev University Dr Jairoop Singh. Two experts helped the vice-chancellor from the GNDU.

Dr Jairoop Singh explained the entire background and presented the records before the committee. Dr Jairoop Singh had explained to the committee that the deliberations conducted on this subject had concluded that Guru Granth Sahib was not only a scriptural study and Guru Granth Sahib presented an inter-religion dialogue and also fostered the idea of humanistic values, which included the contributions not only of Sikh Gurus but also of Hindus, Muslims and Dalit religious divines. The proposed institute would be engaged in the study and understanding of inter-religious dialogue as it had been enshrined in the Guru Granth Sahib.

The expert committee after deliberations is understood to have recommended the establishment of an institute rather than a centre.

The UGC had been asked to take up the matter with the Human Resource Development ministry.



Classes XI, XII to have semester system
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 15
A meeting of the members of the association of the Punjab School Education Board Affiliated Schools was held with Dalbir Singh Dhillon, chairman of the board, here today.

The association discussed various issues confronted by the affiliated schools of the state. Rajinder Sharma, a member, said school authorities should not be bound to pay salary to the staff members through cheques as so many affiliated schools are doing in the rural areas.

Sharma said education board is going to consider maths as a compulsory subject to pass the matriculation examination. The association demanded that maths should be considered as an ordinary subjects like other subjects. The chairman said this demand would be reconsidered.

He also said subject of physical education will become a school-based subject. The board has also decided to remove the word 'open school' from the certificate provided to the Punjab Open School students.

Sharma said if internal assessment is not added in the final examination then it is only an additional unnecessary paper work for the schools.

The chairman said board is going to conduct semester system examinations for Classes XI and XII from the next session.

The association demanded that school authorities should take practical examination for Class VIII and X students. There was no need of appointing an external examiner for conducting practicals of Class VIII and X.

Regarding the land infrastructure required by the board authorities, to run 10+2 classes, the chairman has formed a committee under the chairmanship of director general of education and the delegates for the association of the affiliated schools will be the members of this committee. In the same manner, a committee will also be constituted under the guidance of director academic for getting affiliation up to Class X to the middle schools and up to Class XII to the matric schools of Punjab Open School. The two delegates of the association will be the members of this committee.



An evening of glam, glitterati
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 15
A fashion show by the passing out batch of designers of Sportking Institute of Fashion Technology (SIFT) was organised at the lawns of Sutlej Club last night.

The elite and glitterati of the town witnessed the function. Choreographer Liza orchestrated the show. Designs created by the students gripped the attention of the onlookers. The models and the choreographer were so impressed that they did not want to come out of the outfits they were wearing.

Jayshree who has been a part of many international fashion shows was all praise and appreciated the students.

Every sequence exhibited the work of four designers and at the end of the sequence; the four young budding designers walked the ramp amidst a roaring applause.

The range of garments displayed had a large variety of original moods on which the students had worked. No single theme was given to the students and they had created design sequences from their own research and imagination.

Sunil Vinayak owner of the S2D'O Sunil Vinayak said, "It was a well choreographed show and aspiring designers proved their mettle. The creations were designed as per the international standards."

The knitwear design students had the hosiery industry doyens wonder that such design collections were possible.

According to Vinod Thapar, president of the Knitwear Club, the collection of all knitwear designers were high class and the best that he ever witnessed.

Anjali Avasthi, the president of the SIFT, congratulated every one for making the show a grand success. She thanked Rati and Shivani for their efforts to organise the show, the choreographers, and the models who had come all the way for the show.



Kids try their hands at martial arts
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 15
A 10-day 'summer camp' at Everest Punjab Senior Secondary School, Moti Nagar, concluded here today. The primary feature of the camp was to surface hidden talents of children and inspire them to inculcate creativity.

Students flocked to the camp in large numbers and enthusiastically took part in various activities like yoga, sports, martial arts, and cultural programmes. Students were also given training in dance and music. The function started by lighting the lamp followed by a speech delivered by Rajinder Sharma, president, Association of the Punjab School Education Board, Affiliated Schools.

He highlighted the importance of yoga. He congratulated students for showing deep interest in various activities. Naresh Kumar from Vishav Yoga Sansthan also provided training in 'yoga asanas'. Rakesh Kumar, judo coach from Guru Nanak Stadium, Ludhiana, imparted training to the students in judo, karate and kung fu. Rajwinder Singh, D.P. Ed, gave intensive training in badminton, volleyball, baseball and kho kho.

Desraj and Bobby trained children in Bhangra. The students exhibited their newly acquired talents at this closing function by giving a wonderful performance.



Outstanding students awarded
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 15
The eighth annual prize distribution function of the local Partap College of Education was presided over by Sucha Singh Langah, agriculture minister, Punjab, here today. The chief guest gave away the prizes to students with outstanding achievements in academics, cultural and sports activities. An entertaining cultural programme was also presented by the students.

A book on the teaching of mathematics by Harvinder Singh, a lecturer at the host college, and 'Parkash, the college magazine, were also released on the occasion. Principal Dr Balwant Singh welcomed the guests.

Sunil, Divya, Sona and Parminder, students of BEd and ETT were awarded the roll of honour. Gurvir, Nidhi, Deepika, Amanpreet Singh, Gursharn Singh, Charanjit Singh got prizes for their outstanding achievements. Rohini Gupta was declared the best student of the year. K.K.Bhatia extended a vote of thanks.



Meet on arthritis on June 22
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 15
The Arthritis Foundation of India (AFI) Trust will organise a walk meet on June 22 at Nehru Sidhant Kendra, Feroze Gandhi Market, as a part of its ongoing nationwide arthritis awareness and management campaign titled 'Walk'.

The forum will witness participation from leading orthopaedic and joint replacement surgeons.

Leading medical luminaries, including Dr Manoj Wadhwa, Dr Sanjeev Mahajan and Dr H.S. Gill, will address queries and myths related to the problem.

Patients, who have successfully lived with this disease will also share their experiences.

According to Dr Sushil Sharma, head, AFI, "The walk forum provides an excellent educational platform for one and all. Anyone can attend the meet, which will be beneficial for those who are either responsible for an arthritis patient's welfare or themselves suffering from joint pain and other related symptoms."

Registration for the meet is on. Dr Sharma added, "We are hopeful that people will take full advantage of the programme. Our slogan is “Bone Health - a right, realise it".

Arthroplasty (joint replacement surgery), which may be required in eroding forms of arthritis, has seen extensive advancements.

From successful techniques of minimally invasive surgery to innovations in material, shape and implant procedure of prosthesis, joint replacement has been revolutionised, maximising survivorship, optimising function and accelerating recovery.

Today, arthroplasty has become the most commonly performed orthopaedic procedures with a very high success ratio.

Unfortunately, those who are at a risk of developing this painful condition or are already suffering from its effects do not have ready access to the latest news and advancements. They are unable to make informed decisions due to a lack of knowledge about the disease, its management and treatment options.

The walk aims to help such people and their caretakers to manage the disease in a better way and approach the doctors at the earliest.

The Trust is a non-profit, voluntary health organisation carrying out organised social work in the field of osteoporosis and arthritis.

The aim is to place these diseases on the national health agenda and increase the awareness level amongst the masses.

In 2003, the AFI was recognised by the International Osteoporosis Foundation (IOF), which is a partner of WHO in "Bone and Joint Decade".



‘CME must for doctors’
Kuldip Bhatia
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, June 15
Continuing education programmes are the lifelines of medical and related professions as only by updating their knowledge, the medical and dental professionals can keep pace with newer techniques and provide better treatment to their patients.

These observations were made by Dr Abraham G. Thomas, director, Christian Medical College and Hospital, while inaugurating a continuing dental education series on ‘dental innovations on the horizon’ at Jindal Smile Centre, here today.

In his address, Dr Thomas, a world-renowned plastic surgeon said such continuing education programmes were the need of the hour for improvement in dental as well as medical procedures and growth of the profession. He added that with the advancement in dentistry and treatment options, the global concept of giving the best treatment by different specialists under one roof had become a reality in this part of the country.

Dr Vikas Jindal, chief director of the centre, and a member of Dental Council of India (DCI), while welcoming the guests, said DCI, in its recent general body meeting, had taken a landmark decision of making it mandatory for qualified dental professionals to spend a minimum stipulated number of hours in CDE programmes every year to keep their license valid for practice in the country.

"The DCI has also started short courses in implantology and endodontics for the dentists of the country to help improve their surgical skills." Dr Jindal further added that the concept of multi specialty dental clinics would help the patients get best treatment for various dental ailments by different specialists under one roof.

He claimed that Indian dentists were the best operators worldwide and it was now possible to give state-of-the-art treatment in our country at affordable prices. This was one reason of increased inflow of NRI patients in the city.

The international and national faculty at the CDE included Dr Surinder Singh (Canada), Dr Rajan Gupta, Dr Sameer Kaura, Dr Kapil, Dr Rajan, besides many other stalwarts in the field of dentistry.

The course director Dr Kanika said the centre will keep organising such CDE programmes in future as well and keep disseminating information of latest techniques and procedures in the profession of dentistry to keep pace with the changing times and needs of the patients.



Budding cricketers get tips on improving game
Our Sports Reporter

Ludhiana, June 15
The two-week long cricket coaching camp organised at MGM Public School, Urban Estate, Dugri, concluded today.

Thirty students of different age groups attended this camp during which experts, including qualified coaches and specialist dietitians, advised the young cricketers what was useful for them to become good players.

The campers were given tips on improving endurance, diet, hard work, dedication, discipline, match temperament besides importance of exercises to avoid injuries.

Director of the school Gajjan Singh Thind and principal Mona Singh addressed the campers and congratulated them on the successful conclusion of the camp. They expressed hope that players' interaction with the experts would help them to improve the game. They appreciated coach Charanjit Bhangoo for his efforts to train the players.

Chaman Lal Malhotra, chairman of the Cricket Selection Committee, Punjab (senior), was the chief guest at the concluding function. He shared his experience with the campers and advised them to play the game with dedication and hard work and be punctual.

The office-bearers of the Ludhiana District Cricket Association were also in attendance. Cricket shirts and trousers were given to the campers.



70 aspirants attend cricket trials
Our Sports Reporter

Ludhiana, June 15
At least 70 aspirants turned up for the selection trials to be conducted on the Punjab Agricultural University campus to choose Punjab probables for the forthcoming inaugural edition of the Senior National 20 Cricket Championship stated to be held at the same venue from June 22 to 25.

Secretary general, Punjab State 20 Cricket Asociation, Jasbir Singh informed that as the inclement weather did not allow to hold trials today, it was decided to call all the players who turned up today for a camp to begin at the PAU ground from June 16. They have been asked to report to coach, Anil Kumar at 3 pm.

On the basis of their performance at the camp, the Punjab squad will be announced for the national championship in which 15 states have confirmed their participation so far. Bhagawn Singh Gill, president of the association along with Narinder Pal Singh and others were present at the trials' venue.



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