L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Private Colleges
PU panel irked over steep fee structure
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 26
It is not only the parents or students who are upset over the exorbitant admission fee demanded by the managements of private institutions, but also the admission committee, constituted by Panjab University, which has raised objections over the "non-recommended" fee structure adopted by these colleges.

The committee holds PU Syndicate responsible for "wrongly" allowing these institutions to go ahead with their agenda, following which parents had to shell out huge amounts.

One of the committee members, on condition of anonymity, disclosed that it would meet on July 29 to discuss the issue and other anomalies. The private institutions are raking in huge money by charging about Rs 20,000 per student for BCom courses. This was never approved by the committee.

"The college managements were asked to provide us a figure on which 7 per cent tax had to be imposed and fee funds could come down reasonably. But the new figures were not shown or discussed in the committee and the Syndicate allowed it without giving a second thought. The worst sufferers were the students and parents, who had to pay through their nose for admissions", said the member.

The committee members, including principals, senate, Syndicate and management members, will meet on July 29 to discuss the "burden" of other funds on students at Chandigarh. The other funds that needed to be properly monitored include pupil charges, additional subject (add-on) charges and special facility funds, etc.

Many private managements have been charging "unnecessary" funds but the students have not been provided extra facilities for that. Another member of the committee said, "The unfortunate part is that university authorities end up not taking stern action against the defaulters. It is because the students and parents do not complain about such unethical practices in writing to the authorities. The vice-chancellor and other officials are keen to reform the system but complainants have to come forward in such matters", he said.

During the recent admissions, many colleges charged upto Rs 22,000 for BCom courses whereas the fee could not have been more than Rs 14,000.


Power Crisis
Industrialists plan shifting to Gujarat
Shveta Pathak
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 26
Upset about poor power situation a few industrial units are planning to shift to other states. Industrial enterprises have been reeling under prolonged power cuts, apart from the mandatory two weekly offs, which has reduced the production by at least 50 per cent, said industrialists.

Lesser number of working hours has crippled the industry due to which it is unable to meet its orders on time and is losing buyers. A few industrialists, particularly in the engineering sector, who had decided to shift their base to other states, have started rethinking in this direction. They were persuaded to stay back after the Badal’s government promised round-the-clock power supply.

“We are planning to finalise our land deal for setting up industrial units in Gujarat by next week. Last year, we backed out of the land deal after the government promised to provide round-the-clock power supply. However, the power situation has worsened and we see little hope of its improvement. Now, we are left with no other choice but to look for better alternatives,” said S.C. Ralhan, regional chairman, Engineering Export Promotion Council (EEPC).

Industrialists said the government had failed to fulfill its promise. It had sought votes on the basis of its promise of providing an uninterrupted power supply. “They had claimed that Punjab will become power surplus state within three years. But now, they are saying that the situation can’t improve for at least year-and-a-half, which is disappointing,” said a factory owner.

Thanks to power cuts, daily working hours at factories have reduced to less than eight as most units are working in single shifts only.

“We have to pay wages to labourers whether the number of hours are more or less. Costs, hence, rise and on the other hand, production has declined significantly,” rued Charanjit Singh Vishwakarma, president, United Cycle and Parts Manufacturers Association.

Delays in orders not only hamper business operations and cause payment- related problems; these affect units’ credibility as well. “If such a situation continues to prevail, not only international but domestic buyers as well would not like to do any business with us,” added Raj Kumar, another industrialist.



Powerful, yet most neglected
Zila Parishad office recalls gardeners, ‘beldaars’
Jupinderjit Singh
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 26
At least 30 “beldaars” and gardeners posted with the Zila Parishad, but illegally working in the houses of bureaucrats or influential government officers for the past few years have been summoned to their parent department.

Within a week of his election as the chairman of the Zila Parishad, the most powerful office in the district now, Manpreet Singh Ayali has begun streamlining its functioning and landscaping of the office lawn was his first priority.

“I was shocked to see tall grasses and shrubs all over the premises, which happens to be the highest office in the district and yet the most ignored one. On enquiries, I found that all gardeners and “beldaars” employed for its upkeep were working in the residences of influential officers,” he revealed.

Ayali, a young Akali leader, who was unanimously elected chairman of the Zila Parishad last week, said, “There is no point in talking about developmental works to be carried out in the district if your own office looks ignored.”

Sources reveal that for the past several years the Zila Parishad office has never got its due from the public or bureaucrats. But with the Centre’s move to strengthen the grass roots democracy, Zila Parishad office has been given more grants and powers.

Henceforth, all developmental works to be carried out have to be passed by the Zila Parishad’s office. “We are getting funds from the Prime Minister development schemes, rural development schemes and a few others for improving water, sanitation and roads,” he added.



Education dept comes to Shilpi’s aid
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 26
Finally,there is a ray of hope for the state topper and daughter of Class IV employee, Shilpi Negi,who was worried about her further studies due to financial constraints back home.

Realising her plight, the education department has come forward to extend a helping hand to this brilliant student.In a communiqué to the Shilpi’s parents the department has asked them to submit in detail the expenses to be incurred on her till she gets a degree in bachelor of fine arts.

Her father Prem Negi said, "I received a communiqué from the district education department, asking me to submit an estimate amount be spent on her further further studies.Subsequently, I submitted an estimate of Rs 2. 50 lakh to be spent on her studies. Now,I hope that the education department will look after her education."

Chief Minister Parkesh Singh Badal, who had recently announced a reward of Rs 2 lakh for poor students at Guru Nanak Dev University, Amritsar, did not consider Shilpi, who also belongs to a humble family.

Badal announced a reward of Rs 2 lakh each for Neeraj Saini, who secured first position in the Matriculation and Navpreet Nagi, who secured first position in the commerce stream by scoring 402 marks out of 450 in Class XII PSEB examination.

Shipli, who scored 427 out of 450 marks in Class XII examination conducted by Punjab School Education Board (PSEB), was in no position to continue her studies further, as her parents could not afford the same.

Feeling ignored, she wrote a letter to the Chief Minister requesting him for her share of reward she deserves.

M.R. Mehta, principal, BCM School Focal Point, hoped that Shilpi would receive reward due to her. “She is a brilliant student. Now, the education department has taken the responsibility of providing monitory help,thus we hope there will be no impediments in her further studies.”



IT Raids
Industrial group surrenders Rs 10 cr
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 26
An industrial group in Mandi Gobindgarh has surrendered Rs 10 crore after the income tax raids that were conducted on Thursday, said sources.

Tax sleuths had raided over 24 premises on Thursday at several places, including Khanna and Mandi Gobindgarh. It is learnt that officials also sealed six lockers.

During the investigations, the department also investigated transactions of sub-brokers here and those of others who had transactions with the parties that were suspected to have concealed income.



Sunwinder, Mitika entertain students
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 26
Sunwinder and Mitika, ‘Sa Re Ga Ma’ 2006 contestants from the city and Chandigarh, brought alive the audience at Rajindra Model Senior Secondary School with their captivating performance.

The duo performed for a city-based NGO, Aadhar, the foundation that campaigns against female foeticide.

Sunwinder, the city lad, was a hit with the school students who tapped on ‘Mein hun Don’, ‘Dekha tujhko dekha’ and ‘Surmai sham aati hai’. Spurred on by his celebrity status, Sunwinder was at his best as he accredited his younger sister Prabhjot (11) for being an inspiration in his life. “I see myself as a successful playback singer five years down the line besides pursuing my studies, as I want to do MBA,” said Sunwinder.

Formally trained in classical singing by Chaman Lal, the singer expressed his desire to work with Shankar Mahadevan, adding that the music director had promised him a chance as a playback singer.

“I was touched when Asha Bhonsle called me ‘Punjab Di Sherni’ adding that you have a bright career ahead,” recounts Mitika. She became the proud recipient of ‘golden key’ by Asha Bhonsle on her scintillating performance on ‘O meri jaan’, yesterday.

The daughter of Punjabi music director Kanwar Iqbal, who is also her guru in classical singing, Mitika is a psychology (honours) student. Impressed by Dr Brian Wess, the famous psychologist, she says, “I want to become a psychologist as it will enable me to deal with the ups and downs in my career as a playback singer. Coming on to music, Ustaad Amin Khan, Sunidhi Chauhan, Hariharn, Mahalaxmi are amongst my favourite singers,” she added.



OBC body to launch agitation
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 26
The All-India OBC Welfare Organisation has proclaimed that the organisation will launch an agitation to secure the rights of the OBCs in the country.

Addressing a press conference here yesterday, Malkiat Singh Birmi, national president of the organisation, said neglect of the rights of the OBCs has forced the organisation to choose the path of struggle.

Birmi said it was incomprehensible why the OBCs, who participated in the freedom struggle and were contributing to nation- building, were being deprived of their rights.

He said the Mandal Commission' recommendations for the OBCs were 27 per cent reservation, but till now more than half a dozen governments at the Centre had come and gone without anyone caring to implement the recommendations of the commission.

To get the recommendations implemented was on priority of the organisation' agenda. Birmi appealed to all the OBCs to come forward and participate in the struggle of the organisation to secure their rights.



Villagers educated about social welfare schemes
Our Correspondent

Sahnewal, July 26
A seminar to educate the rural folk about new schemes initiated by the government was organised at Harian village by Pancho Fed Chandigarh and Ludhiana District Cooperative Union Limited yesterday.

Speaking on the occasion, Ranjit Singh Dhaliwal, assistant registrar, Cooperative Department, said under various schemes launched for the poor , the government was providing a loan of Rs 2 Lakh under the Bhai Ghanaian Health Scheme, Rs 25000 under the Bhai Lalo Kirti Scheme and Rs 25000 under the Mai Bhago Nari Shakti Scheme.



Organise regular events, council tells sports clubs
Our Sports Reporter

Ludhiana, July 26
The Punjab Rural Sports Promotion Council, governing body of the rural sports clubs, has urged upon the clubs to organise regular events instead of holding rural sports festivals.

Addressing the meeting of the council, held here today at Guru Nanak Stadium, chairman Paramjit Singh Khatra said the clubs should encourage the games included in the Olympics chart so that the participants could be benefited.

He also announced that National Amarjit Grewal Khed Rattan Award function would be held in the last week of September in Ludhiana. "Before the function, five seminars will be organised in different zones to make the clubs aware about the importance of regular disciplines," he said.

The first seminar would be held on August 9 in Majha region at Batala while the second one would be conducted in Pepsu zone at Patiala, on August 23. The third seminar was slated for Doaba zone to be held at Adampur on August 30. This would be followed by one in the Malwa zone I at Jarkhar and the last one in the Malwa zone II at Bathinda in the first and second week of September, respectively. The main purpose for organising these seminars was to attract the young budding boys and girls towards sports and also preserve the rural sports culture in the state, Khatra added.

Gurmit Singh, vice-chairman of the council, and Harmail Singh and Sukhvir Singh Chouhan, presidents of Malwa Zone I and II, respectively, appealed to the sports minister, Punjab, to make the game of hockey compulsory in all the schools so that the national sport could regain its lost glory.

Jagroop Singh Jarkhar, Kulwant Singh Sohal, president and general secretary of the council, respectively, also shared their views at the meeting. A cash prize of Rs 50,000 each to outstanding players (boys and girls) would be given during the function scheduled to be held in September, they said.

Cash prizes of Rs 25,000 each will be given to best coach, best sports promoter and best rural sports club.

A large number of sports club representatives from all over the state attended the meeting. 



Student gifts computer for poor kids
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 26
Ridhi Jain, a student of class VII of Atma Singh Public School, has gifted a computer to a school in Shimla Puri that teaches underprivileged children.

This 12-year-old girl, who has celebrated her 13th birthday, donated her entire pocket money and purchased a computer for students of Jain School.

She said, “My father visited this school a few days ago and told me that there was no computer in the school.”

She further said, "Computer education is necessary for the students so I decided to help these children and collected approximately Rs 7000. Rest of the money was collected by my father.”



Plantation drive by schools
Tribune News Service

Khanna, July 26
Various schools of the city yesterday launched a tree plantation drive under which students planted saplings on school premises. They were taught about the disadvantages of tree felling. The students were encouraged to plant maximum number of saplings in their houses and their respective residential areas.



Pharmacist held taking drugs into jail
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 26
The alert staff of Borstal Jail yesterday arrested a pharmacist employed with the jail for trying to smuggle 45 capsules, allegedly used as intoxicants, into the jail premises.

Charanjit Singh Bhangu, superintendent, Borstal Jail, said pharmacist Harpreet Singh was trying to take capsules, parvon spas, inside the jail premises which was against the rules.

He said the pharmacist, posted in the jail a month ago, had not informed any senior official about the capsules. Further, he said, he had no business to take the capsules other than to give to inmates.

He said criminal action against the pharmacist would be taken only after the lab report testifies the capsules, basically used as pain killers, acted as intoxicants if heavy dose was taken.

The jail superintendent said he had written to the civil surgeon to take necessary action against the pharmacist and transfer him out of the jail.



Wool council to set up warehouse in Moscow
Shveta Pathak
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 26
Concerned over the decline in the export of woollen products and readymade garments, the Wool and Woollen Export Promotion Council, has decided to set up a warehouse in Moscow, in order to ensure supplies to customers at a short notice.

The proposal of the council has been accepted by the ministry of textiles, said Ashok Jaidka, chairman of the council.

“There has been a decline of 6.84 per cent in the export of wool, wool-blended textile and readymade garments, including knitwear, between April 2007 and February 2008. The amount has declined from Rs 1,812 crore to Rs 1,688 crore which is a matter of concern. To reverse the declining trend we have chalked out a plan that includes setting up a warehouse in Moscow,” he said. The members of the council will be able to store their goods in the warehouse from where they can ensure timely supplies even at a short notice.

The council has also finalised an export promotion programme for the year 2008-09 under which it would send various trade delegations to Moscow, Almaty, Tashkent, Australia and New Zealand. Besides, participation in international exhibitions, trade shows has also been planned. Jaidka said the council would participate in Trends Apparel Show in Canada, the India Garment Fair in Japan and Moda Accessories Exhibition in the UK.

He said these activities would help members gain more orders leading to a rise in exports.



From Schools
Investiture ceremony at Ryan school
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 26
Vanshika and Arjit were appointed president and vice-president, respectively, at the annual investiture ceremony held in Ryan International School here yesterday.

A sapling was presented to the chief guest, Harish Rai Dhanda, chief parliamentary secretary.

Talent Search at KVM: Nikhil Sareen of Raman House was declared the best actor and Arshdeep of Nehru House was adjudged the best actress in a talent search contest organised by the Junior Humanities Forum for students of the primary section at Kundan Vidya Mandir, Civil Lines.

This activity provides a platform for the gifted ones to show their artistic talents.

The function was presided over by school principal Rajeev Nagalia along with Annu Sehra, in charge of the primary section.

Varun Arora and Anjali Jain took the oath as head boy and head girl along with 12 house captains and 12 house vice-captains.

After this colourful bonanza of the primary section began.The talent search contest was divided into seven categories -mono acting, skit, dance (folk and classical), solo song and instrumental music.

The budding artists of the primary section mesmerised the audience. The majestic classical dancing, folk dancing depicting cultural heritage, melodious songs and music were appreciated by all.

Savitri Kaura was declared the best comperer. While giving away the prizes, the school principal appreciated all the participants and congratulated the prize winners.

Results: Mono-acting: I Vidushi, II Lavanya, III Abhinav Lekhi. Skit : I Dr Hansod ka dawakhana of Raman House, II Khap Roti Khap Dal of Nehru House, III Bahana of Tagore House.

Dance Folk: I Damini and Arzoo, II Mahima and Kirtika III Arushi and Dikshita

Dance (Classical): I Svrnima, II Aanchal Takkar, III Sbreya Vassan. Solo Song : I Vanshaj Jam, II Ojasvi and Kavya, III Shaurya Sharma.



Training course ends
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 26
A 10-day training course concluded at Guru Angad Dev Veterinary & Animal Sciences University (GADVASU), here yesterday.

Experts from the College of Veterinary Science delivered lectures on various aspects of dairy farming. The farmers were advised to have proper planning in regard to land, funds and availability of loans etc. Further, they were guided to keep high yielding dairy animals in their herds.

They were instructed to construct cheap, but comfortable sheds for animals. The farmers were guided to make green fodder available to their animals throughout the year. They were also advised to grow leguminous and non-leguminous fodder together for a better yield. They were encouraged to make the concentrate feed and prepare the silage at the farm itself. The first aid methods for various ailments were taught and practical demonstrations were also held.



PAU to organise workshop on instructional delivery
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 26
Keeping in view the contemporary paradigm shift from teaching to learning and increasing role of instructional effectiveness, PAU department of home science will conduct a three-day workshop on improving instructional delivery from July 29 to 31.

The programme will have discussions, group activities and individual experiences of participants based on assigned topic in each of the technical sessions. Issues to be raised by teachers based on their classroom experience will be collectively explored.

Head of the department Dr V. Randhawa said, " The best practices for accelerating learning will be examined. Dr M. A. Zahir and Dr S. Roy will deliberate on topics like role of teachers in the changing environment and developing soft skills for experiential learning. Lectures on ‘innovative instructional techniques’, ‘teachers as motivators’ and ‘leadership for change in teaching-learning’ will also be organised."



BCM toppers felicitated
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 26
As many as 120 meritorious students were felicitated for their outstanding achievements in academics, sports and extracurricular activities at a function at B.C.M Arya Model Senior Secondary School, Shastri Nagar, here today.

Dr M.A Zahir, chairman, Synetic Business School, was the chief guest.

The programme began with a lamp- lighting ceremony followed by Saraswati Vandana. A cultural programme was also held.

The chief guest gave away the prizes to the students.



300 patients examined
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 26
As many as 300 patients suffering from bone diseases were examined at a free orthopaedic camp, organised today at Bhagwan Ram Charitable Hospital.

Dr Amit Modi along with his team of doctors conducted the camp wherein patients were given free consultation followed by medicines.

Patients from all age groups suffering from chronic bone diseases were also examined and told to follow up with the doctors. 



Badminton Tournament
Vineet, Ritu emerge champs
Our Sports Reporter

Ludhiana, July 26
Vineet Kumar of the Jagraon branch in the men's section while Ritu from the divisional office, Dugri, in the women's section overpowered their opponents to emerge champions in the one-day Life Insurance of India(divisional level) Badminton Tournament held at Shastri Hall, near Guru Nanak Stadium, here today.

Fifteen participants in the men's section and six competitors in the women's section took part in the tournament in which players from Mansa, Jagraon, Khanna and Samrala offices, besides those from eight branches of Ludhiana city also participated.

In the men's final, Vineet Kumar faced little resistence from his rival, T P S Nanda from Unit IV, Ludhiana, whom he defeated in straight sets. Vineet wrapped up the first set 21-9 and then went on to win the next one 21-11 to fetch the top honours.

In the match to decide the third position, Sanjeev Kalia of Gurdev Nagar, Ludhiana branch, got a walkover against Amarjeet Singh of the Divisional Office, Dugri (Ludhiana), who failed to turn up.

However, the final in the women's section played between Ritu of the divisional office, Ludhiana, and Nisha of Unit I, Ludhiana, turned out be a keenly contested affair in which, eventually the former came out triumphant.

In the first set, Ritu appeared to be no match to her rival as Nisha won it 15-10. But, in the second set, Ritu bounced back into the match by winning it 15-8 to level the score one-all.

The third set witnessed a fierce battle between the two as they fought for each point. However, Ritu managed to keep her composure at crucial moments which helped her win it 15-12 and clinch the cliff hanger.

In the match played between Kanchan and Nirpinder Kaur, both from the divisional office, Dugri, Ludhiana, to decide the third position, the former, after surviving some anxious moments, managed to prevail upon and secured the third place. She won the verdict 15-9, 15-11.

On the basis of their performance, Vineet and Ritu have qualified for the North Zone Inter-Division Life Insurance Corporation of India Badminton Tournament slated to be held at Bikaner in the middle of September.



State junior swimming meet at Sangrur
Our Sports Reporter

Ludhiana, July 26
The 33rd edition of the Junior Punjab State Swimming and Water Polo Championship for boys and girls in the age groups 13-14 and 15-17 , in all the national events will be organised at the War Heros Swimming Pool, Sangrur from August 1 to 3, according to the president, Punjab Swimming Association, Apinder Singh Grewal.

Swimmers, born in the years 1991, 1992 and 1993 are eligible for the 15-17 groups and those born in 1994 and 1995 can take part in the 13-14 group. The entries will close on July 30. The performance in this meet would be taken into consideration while selecting the Punjab state junior swimming and water polo squads for the 35th Junior National Aquatic Championship to be held at Amritsar from August 30 to September 4, Grewal said.



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