L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


LPG shortage hits city 
Shveta Pathak
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 1
Obtaning a cooking gas cylinder is getting tougher by the day in the city. Citing shortage as the reason, oil companies have now started asking customers with two connections in the same household to surrender one. Double bottling connections (DBC), too, are not being issued.

A long wait for refilling is further adding to consumers’ troubles. "Recently, I was told by the gas agency to surrender one connection. So far, we have been managing with one connection in my name and the other in my husbands.

When we wanted to get it converted to a DBG, they refused to do so. If we give up one connection and do not even get another cylinder, how will we manage?” questioned Kuldip Kaur, a homemaker.

Some customers, who are already managing with a single bottling connection, too are feeling helpless. “I have one connection in my name. Earlier, I used to book the cylinder a few days in advance. But for the last few months, the gas agency is booking the cylinder after 20 days of the receipt of the first cylinder. However, when I asked the gas agency to convert my connection to DBC, they refused to do so citing shortage as the reason," said Praveen Sharma, a local resident.

"We are getting lesser supplies. Even this month, the supply was a few trucks lesser than the previous month. Though we cannot say when the situation will improve, it looks that the festival season may see a further rise in demand," said a leading LPG dealer, requesting anonymity.


Contractors take MC for a ride
Kuldip Bhatia

Ludhiana, September 1
The controversy surrounding tenders for recarpeting and repair of major and minor roads in the city has assumed serious dimensions with the reports that the eligible contractors enlisted with the municipal corporation have formed a pool to make their bids at much higher rates thereby short-changing the civic body by anything from 15 to 20 per cent of the estimated cost of Rs 25 crore.

The engineering (B&R) branch of the civic body had floated tenders for carpeting and repair of major roads at an estimated cost of Rs 14 crore while road works within city wards were to be carried out at a cost of Rs 11 crore.

Sources in the MC revealed that seven contractors had joined hands to offer bids for different works on major roads which were just one to two per cent less than central schedule of rates (CSR) whereas earlier, similar works had been quoted at around 20 per cent less than the CSR. A similar modus operandi was being adopted for minor road works for which tenders were submitted by 13 contractors.

It was alleged that some of the senior officials of the civic body had played a key role in manipulative bids of contractors and some of the tenders were accepted even after the deadline for submitting tenders was over. It was only when some of the contractors, who were not accommodated in the pool, raised objections to the acceptance of tenders after the cut-off time, the tender box was sealed by the officials giving credence to the allegations regarding irregularities.

Insiders maintain that even the mandatory requirement of having a hot mix plant to bid for carpeting of roads was not fulfilled. While hot mix plants of some contractors in the contention have been sealed by the Punjab Pollution Control Board for violation of norms, a few others are said to have offered multiple bids in different names on the basis of a single plant which is against the rules.

Unconfirmed reports said the bidding contractors had also not fulfilled the condition of supporting the tender with required earnest money.

Officials of the engineering branch, however, stated that only those tenders, which were complete in all respects, including the required earnest money, would be taken into consideration. About the hot mix plants, they maintained that the onus was on the contractor to commence and complete the work in time.

MC joint commissioner Mohinder Pal, who is in charge of the engineering branch, told The Tribune that a committee comprising three superintending engineers, executive engineers concerned, deputy controller, finance and accounts of the MC, would open the tenders under his direct supervision and all procedures laid down for this purpose would be followed before acceptance of tenders and allotment of works.



Refusal to withdraw complaint costs students dear
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 1
As many as eight students of Air Hostess Academy (AHA) were not allowed to take their hospitality examination by the institute authorities here today.

The students alleged that the instructor of aviation academy, M.K. Shrivastva, did not permit them to take the examination as the the institute authorities wanted them to withdraw their complaint against the institute.

Garima, a student of the academy, said: "Institute instructor M.K. Shrivastva categorically told us to withdraw the complaint against the institute in writing. When we refused, he prohibited us from sitting in the examination."

Other students namely Hardeep, Karan and Baldeep also made similar complaints against the institute authorities.

Even earlier the students and teachers were up in arms against each other over the irregularities at the aviation institute.

Agitated parents and students had arguments with the academy staff. The parents alleged that despite paying a whopping amount Rs 1.10 lakh as fee, their wards had failed to get any jobs.

The students alleged that the institute had duped them and not fulfilled their promise of a secured job which they made at the time of admission. They even lodged a police complaint against the institute.

However, the institute authorities have rebuffed all allegations made by the students as baseless.

Administrator of the institute Inderpal Singh said: "The students are making baseless allegations against the institute and trying to malign the image of the academy. We are ready to address any problem regarding their examination. We have already made all arrangements for the reconduct of the examination."



Rise in Suicide Cases
Internet, TV making kids intolerant: Experts
Mohit Khanna

Tribune News Service
Ludhiana, September 1
Suicide committed by the minor girl about two days ago has brought to the fore the growing intolerance among children which is ultimately forcing them to take such an extreme step. The autopsy report ascertained that Mamti (11), who was working as a maidservant at Kultar Singh’s residence at Punjab Mata Nagar, committed suicide by hanging herself from the ventilator.

The suicide has alarmed people living in this city. The child psychologists are taking it as a wake up call for parents as the growing level of anxiety among children is forcing them to commit suicide.

It is even difficult for the police to come to terms with the situation. Earlier, in charge of the Dugri police station Dalip Bedi was astonished at the nature of the case. It was only after receiving the autopsy report that the case of suicide was registered. Rajiv Gupta, a psychiatrist, terms such cases as growing ratio of children who attain maturity much before their actual age and growing intolerance among children.

He said, “Nowadays small children have started behaving like a mature person. Children of this age group have started reasoning out things like a teenager. With all kinds of information, just a click away, it is getting difficult for the parents to cope with the situation. Mixed images of the fast changing society are further making them confused. Parents are bent upon teaching morality to them, but children are getting attracted towards all kinds of absurdities, thanks to the abuse of Internet and television. Further, the pornographic movies have also made the matter worse. The suicide attempt by children, which was considered rare thing in the past, has become very common nowadays.

With the children getting more and more intolerant it’s getting difficult for parents to cope up with the situation. I regularly come across such children who have taken extreme steps if their demands are not fulfilled.”

Child psychologist Pooja said: “The patience is eluding most of the children and this is not only true for those living in the urban areas, but also for those in rural areas. I believe we need to probe into the incident of murder in our city and take correctional steps, if possible.”

Manjit Singh Chabra, a member of the Ek Pryas, an NGO, said, “It is time for parents to pay attention to what phase their children are passing through.

If 11-year-old girl can take such an extreme step, then our children who are living under constant stress can also do so. And for all this the parents are to blame as they are the ones who are putting pressure on their wards for fulfilling their aspirations.”

He added, “The television has become the primary mode of information among children rather then parents. The child gets baffled once he is unable to decide as whom to believe. It is happening in every household. Children are now threatening to take extreme steps if their demands are not met. The case of Mamti is no strange, it is just the reflection of changing social fabric.”



Acid Attack
Accused get interim bail Lawyers demand probe
Rajneesh Lakhanpal
Ludhiana, September 1

The Court of Additional Sessions Judge Ashok Kumar today granted interim anticipatory bail to Arun Kumar Khurmi, a city lawyer, and his father, Roshan Khurmi, in the acid attack case here yesterday.

The Judge ordered the police to release the accused persons on bail, if they needed to be arrested. The police has been asked to produce the case record before the court on September 4 for hearing arguments of both sides.

The duo were booked under Section 307 of IPC on the statement of Ekta, daughter-in-law of Roshan, at Salem Tabri Police Station. The woman had accused her brother-in-law Arun Khurm and father-in-law for throwing acid on her.

The accused, however, had pleaded innocence. It was pleaded that earlier their entire family was booked in a dowry case under the influence of Ekta's family. When they got a bail in that case, Ekta got infuriated and planted this false case.

Meanwhile, showing solidarity with its member, the District Bar Association (DBA) passed a resolution condemning police action. They have demanded a high-level probe into the case.



3 held with 250-kg poppy husk
Our Correspondent

Raikot, September 1
The local police arrested three persons, including a father-son duo, for allegedly carrying and smuggling narcotics. Ten bags of poppy husk weighing about 250 kg and a Tata Sumo used in the crime were seized from the suspects.

Gurdev Singh Debu of Dhudike village, Jagsir Singh Jaggi and his father Waryam Singh of Barhmi village were nabbed with 250 kg of poppy husk from outskirts of Barhmi village last evening by a police party led by SHO Gurdial Singh.

Preliminary investigations revealed that the accused had been supplying the contraband in the area for about three years. They used to bring the material from Sangharia area in Rajasthan and sell it to the addicts, predominantly farm-labourers.



Mall to replace Ahmedgarh bus stand
New bus stand to come near highway
Mahesh Sharma

Mandi Ahmedgarh, September 1
Travelling by bus will become more expensive and troublesome for residents of the town and surrounding villages as the state transport department has decided to shift the local bus stand near the Ludhiana-Malerkotla road.

The decision was taken after authorities failed to make drivers of private buses reach the bus stand instead of returning from Pohir village. The dilapidated condition of the present bus stand owned by the Pepsu Road Transport Corporation (PRTC) seems to be another factor for the development. Instead of spending lakhs of rupees on repair of the bus stand building, the corporation will construct a business mall here.

The residents of the town and about two dozen surrounding villages will have to cover an extra distance of about four kilometres to board a bus. Besides spending more on auto-rickshaws or private vehicles, their time will also be wasted.

Elderly persons and women will be the worst sufferers due to unavailability of public transport between the town and the proposed bus stand. Those finishing their journeys during night will either have to walk down the distance or take the risk of taking lifts from unknown persons.

Councillors led by Ravinder Puri and Bimal Sharma said the PRTC had constructed the present bus stand with the help of local social organisations about three decades ago. The corporation had purchased a low-lying land at a throwaway price.

Things went smoothly for about 10 years, after which a majority of the bus-drivers, plying between Ludhiana and Malerkotla, stopped coming to the bus stand. They started dropping and picking passengers from Pohir village.

In the absence of basic amenities at the bus stand, office-bearers of some social organisations tried to provide drinking water here. The courtesy, however, ended due to alleged non-cooperation from corporation authorities.

Requests by residents for improvement of services and repair of the bus stop building fell on deaf ears. The Ludhiana Tribune had carried a series of stories on plight of the commuters.

When a delegation of local leaders requested transport minister Master Mohan Lal to get the facilities restored, he said the government had decided to shift the bus stand to a distant place and a mall would be erected here.

"Instead of spending lakhs of rupees on the repair of the bus stand, we will construct a new one near the highway, connecting Ludhiana and Malerkotla. We will construct a business mall here and the income from the new venture will be spent on the maintenance of the proposed bus stand," said Mohan Lal. However, minor repairs would be undertaken soon, the minister assured.



Sloppy patchwork: Rain god shows no mercy

If the Municipal Corporation in the mega city remains under fire for poor maintenance of roads and making a mess of the occasional recarpeting or patchwork on the city roads, it is deservedly so if one goes by the pathetic condition of the roads.

Then, at least for the last few months, the rain god has been mercilessly flogging the civic body as all patchworks carried out to fill the potholes had been washed away.

On Saturday, the weather was clear till noon and the MC authorities were carrying out patchwork on several roads, including sections of the Ferozepur road Humbran road and Gill road. However, late in the afternoon, it started to rain and the downpour continued for several hours.

The MC staff, deployed to fill the potholes, was not sure whether continue with the work or abandon it since the patchwork was, even otherwise, bound to be washed away by heavy rain.

NRI character

A kaleidoscopic view of the Punjabi NRIs gives an insight into their Indian traits that they are unable to do away with even after their prolonged stay abroad. A sigh of relief that follows their first step on the airport signals towards ‘easy homecoming’.

Lengthy discussions during lunches and dinners are not just restricted to friendly neighbourhood but accommodate even the village ‘cattle and battle’.

Then follows the most awaited ritual of opening up of a Pandora’s Box (the jumbo bags containing gifts). It is indeed the day of bossy aunt (bhua ji) from Toronto who presents a doll to her four-year-old niece, a scotch bottle to her brother, a leather purse to ‘bhabi’ and a handful of branded cosmetics to her sister-in-law. Not to miss small gifts for other relatives.

It’s showtime for ‘bua ji’ as she says, "Oh my god, mein apne toilet tissues de packs leane tan bhul hi gayi” (I forgot to bring my toilet paper rolls) followed by “kake zaldi bazaar to bisleri water mangwa de, tap water tan mainu digest nahin hona” (Please get me the mineral water as I won't be able to digest normal tap water).

Rationalisation sans logic

The rationalisation policy of teachers’ transfers in the district revealed some interesting facts. The transfers are being done in the name of surplus staff to the schools where they are needed.

Two social science teachers in a school in city’s periphery near Jagroan received their transfer orders earlier this week. Interestingly, after the transfer orders came, the authorities realised that the school was without any social science teacher. So, a new one was posted.

One of the teachers did not want to answer the Tribune correspondent regarding his differences on the subject of rationalisation. He only kept repeating: “Brother, I have not been shifted. Why do you want me to speak on an issue which could bring me into the line of fire? Please ignore rationalisation. I will give you three story ideas, instead.

Punjabi flavour finds favour

Modern day restaurants and accredited five-star hotels take a backseat when it comes to tasting the tang of Punjabi cuisine. Young boys and girls of the Punjab Agricultural University (PAU) prefer to gobble up 'rotis’ with ‘karhi pakora' rather than nibble at tongue-twisting delicacies in restaurants. It's flavour of ‘tandoor’ with a pankhi in hand and a glass of tea at Sharma dhaba that concludes their day at the varsity.

Beauties with brain?

The college managements are busy organising fresher parties these days. In the girls’ colleges, such parties mean a lot when students put in their best effort to look gorgeous.

The girls start preparing themselves for the event much in advance. The outfits, accessories to be carried, hairstyles and make-up are discussed amongst friends and family members.

As far as sashaying on the ramp is concerned, majority of them carry themselves pretty well. They look gorgeous till the moment they speak.

In the question-answer round, their real personality comes out. Majority of the participants disappoint the judges and audience with their stupid answers. At least the organisers must prepare them to speak well on the stage. After all, the title has to be given to the “beauty with brains”.

Media crazy

The organisers of sports and social functions have become so fond of electronic media that they do not bother to confirm if a particular channel is operative or not. Though majority of reporters of TV channels working in area do not betray ethics of journalism, there are some who do not hesitate in exploiting organisers by posing as reporters of channels, which are not operating anymore.

There are others, who work for some operational channels, but carry inoperative logos to increase their “bargaining power”. Logos of NRI and Lishkara can be occasionally seen in press conferences and functions being organised in the area.

However, it’s not that all the organisers get befooled by the fake reporters.

Mega reception to cager

Nagma Mirza, a student of class IX of Khalsa Girls’ Senior Secondary School, Civil Lines, received a thunderous applause when she reached the campus on her return from the IVth International Games “Festival of Asia” in Russia, last week, where the Indian team won a gold medal in basketball.

A special function was organised in the school where she was honoured by Ravinder Kaur Grewal, the manager with a cash prize. Principal Inderjit Kaur said that Nagma was a brilliant student.

Consumer not the king

When oil companies started promoting sale of premium fuel, there was much uproar from various segments right from petroleum dealers to consumers.

Getting diesel has become a tough task, particularly at petrol stations located on the outskirts of the city and in villages. The affected segments, however, seem to have accepted the situation. They are no loner cribbing, though procuring fuel still remains a tough task.

The workers at the filling stations direct customers only towards premium fuel sections. Consumer, once again, it seems, has lost the battle.

(Contributed by Kuldip Bhatia, Anshu Seth, Mohit Khanna, Shivani Bhakoo, Mahesh Sharma, Sanjeev Bariana and Shveta Pathak)



Gastro Outbreak
Vulnerable areas remain neglected
Anshu Seth
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 1
Tall claims by the municipal corporation and the health department notwithstanding, the remote areas of the city, under the influence of gastroenteritis, remain neglected even as the authorities sent official notes saying that awareness lectures and cleanliness drives were carried out across the city.

According to sources, the MC has not carried out a cleanliness drive in Gurbachan colony, Adarsh colony and adjoining areas on Dabba Lohara road as heaps of garbage lie unattended outside the lanes and vacant plots. Though, the authorities engaged some local boys to clear the waste in the area, it was later dumped into a vacant plot (the area earmarked for a colony for slum dwellers).

Almost every house in Adarsh colony has one member suffering from the viral infection and stomach disorder. The residents of the area told The Tribune that no one from health department or the Ludhiana MC has visited the area this season.

“The government land adjoining the colony is becoming a garbage dump as the waste of more than half of Gyaspura is being dumped here causing health hazard,” rued Vinod Kumar, an area resident said.

The authorities have neither taken water samples nor distributed chlorine tablets in the area and fogging has been restricted to the main roads, he added.

The public health department claimed to have conducted public awareness lectures in Gyaspura, one of the most affected areas of the city. Workshops were held in ‘jhuggis’ opposite the Avon Bicycle factory, Dhandari Kalan, and Lakkar Colony. The health authorities claimed to have taken five water samples and visited more than 200 households.

The MC authorities, on the other hand, claim to have visited ward numbers 2, 3, 4, 19, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 33 and 34 and distributed over 13,000 chlorine tablets.

In complete paradox to the claims of the health authorities for carrying out awareness drives followed by medical camps in remote areas of Gyaspura, no employee in the vehicle of civil surgeon office was giving instructions on the public address system on main road today. Interestingly, the official did not even bother to come out of the vehicle. 



Anti-dumping duty to hit exports: Industry
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 1
Reacting to slashing of duty drawback rates on several items, including bicycle and bicycle parts , the Chamber of Industrial and Commercial Undertakings (CICU) today termed the decision as "anti-export".

Avtar Singh, general secretary of the chamber, said the government should withdraw this decision immediately as it would hit exports.

"Exports have already been passing through a rough phase. By slashing duty rates by 2 per cent to 5 per cent, the government has made a move that would hit exports badly. The rates should be allowed to remain the same," said Avtar Singh.

The chamber added that the rise in steel prices and hike in various input costs were making the Indian industry uncompetitive in the global market. Amid all these adverse factors, such a move would only act as another blow, he added.



Quacks thrive in absence of checks
Anshu Seth
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 1
Increasing activities of quacks and self-styled medical practitioners are playing havoc with the health of illiterate and unaware masses living in the city slums and rural areas of the district.

A large section of populace residing in Fieldganj, Gyaspura, Sherpur, Basti Abdullapur, Basti Jodhewal and villages adjoining Ludhiana are buying medicines from these quacks and self-styled medical practitioners.

Nonchalant attitude of the district health authorities has further encouraged these quacks.

On a recent visit to Gyaspura, The Tribune reporter witnessed a large number of quacks sitting in small shops dispensing medicines to the patients. Posing as a patient, the reporter went to a clinic in Guru Nanakpura which was being run by a retired dispenser from a local industry. The dispenser had a board with 'Dr' written before his name in bold letters.

Procurement of medicine by these quacks is another issue that puts the role of the health authorities under scanner. These fake doctors are administering all sorts of medicines to the people coming to them. From mild painkillers, including Analgin, to Proxyvon, which comes under habit-forming drugs, is available at these 'illegal counters'.

Civil surgeon Dr S.P. Sharma said all these complaints pertaining to the RMP (registered medical practitioners) and quacks were dealt by the director, research and medical education (DRME). "We can't initiate action till we have a serious complaint or orders of the DRME to conduct raids on these medical practitioners," the civil surgeon said.

The area is full of pharmacists posing as doctors, quacks with fake degrees from unrecognised universities and people practising medicine without license. Making a mockery of the profession, some quacks have named these outlets as 'nursing homes' and 'hospitals' to dupe innocent people living in the nearby colonies.

Interestingly, these so-called doctors refrain from giving any prescription and run their shops by selling medicines from their own counters. Sushil, a migrant from Bihar working in a local factory, confirmed that his doctor on the Dabba Lohara road himself gave him the medicine and never asked him to buy it from a drug store.

In what could be termed as blatant violation, the quacks are practising medicine, carrying out incisions and are also treating pregnant women.

Peddling fake cures for simple stomach disorders to dental and ortho problems, some self-styled homeopaths and ayurveda practitioners are also earning their livelihood at the cost of innocent lives. 



Unveiling of Ishmeet’s wax replica today
Anshu Seth
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 1
A 5.11-foot tall wax replica of Ishmeet Singh would be unveiled in the museum at Hardy’s World to pay tributes to the singer on his birthday tomorrow.

Having created the statue in a short span of one month, Chander Shekhar Prabhakar adds, “I worked for almost eight hours a day to do justice to Ishmeet’s statue as it was my wish to complete it before his birthday.” It would be donated to the music academy, which is being opened in his name by the state government.

Chandershekhar was determined to “reproduce” Ishmeet as people had seen him on the stage during his performances. Clad in crème “sherwani”, red turban and “bandni” stole with a mike in his hand; the wax image gives a ready-to-sing impression.

The intricately sculpted image undeniably bears the humane touch as is evident from the frame of his spectacles to the “jutti” in his feet.



Show for special children
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 1
Waves Cinema, Ludhiana, celebrated its first anniversary by organising a special show for 175 children from Vocational Rehabilitation and Training Centre (VRTC), a school for deaf and dumb, Ashirwaad, Ek Prayas and Viklang kendre run by the Bharat Vikas Parishad, today.

It had sponsored a show of Ranbir Kapoor starrer “Bachna Ae Haseeno” for the children of these institutions to celebrate their one-year in the city.

Narrating experiences of the children with special needs, Neelam Sodhi, director of Ashirwaad, said, "Such gestures are touching as people no more showing sypmathy towards them.”



Development projects worth Rs 10,000 cr launched
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 1
Bikram Singh Majithia, minister for information and public relations, water and sanitation, Punjab, said development projects costing more than Rs 10,000 crore had been launched in the rural areas.

He was addressing a gathering before the installation ceremony of new Zila Parishad chairman Manpreet Singh Ayali here today.

The minister said the government had launched a crash programme costing Rs 3,000 crore for the repair of the rural roads. Another amount worth Rs 1,280 crore from the World Bank has been marked for water supply and sewerage projects to cover 3,044 villages by year 2011.

Strongly refuting the propaganda of Congress party for slowing down the development process in Punjab, the minister said the Congress party had completely ruined the economy of the state and left a debt of Rs 53,000 crore on exchequer.



Villagers protest outside sub-registrar’s office
Mahesh Sharma

Mandi Ahmedgarh, September 1
Residents of Pohir village in Ludhiana district, led by its panchayat, staged a protest in front of the sub-registrar’s office at Dehlon today. They urged the sub-registrar to revoke the land deed, allegedly prepared by a villager, who was not legal owner of the land. According to the villagers, market value of the common land that was handed over to the public works department was Rs 22 lakh.

Harbans Singh, naib tehsildar, denied having registered any land deed. He claimed that nobody would be allowed to sell the land for which he or she had no clear title.

“Before allowing any sale deed we go through the records about its ownership and lien on the land. So it is not possible that an illegal possessor will dare present the deed,” said Harbans Singh adding that the payment would only be forwarded to the legal owners.

Villagers led by sarpanch Surinder Kaur alleged that the revenue authorities at the Dehlon sub tehsil were allegedly felicitating an illegal possessor of the common land, bearing khasra Nos.10, 8, 9, 12, 13 and 14 of the Pohir village, to sell the land to the government. The government for the four-laning of the Ludhiana- Malerkotla road was acquiring it.

Claiming that a number of legal cases regarding ownership of “disputed” land were pending in various courts, villagers maintained that the possessor had no right to realise the amount from the government.



Budding designers at their creative best
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 1
Inter National Institute of Fashion Design (INIFD) organised a glittering fashion show in which leading models of the country exhibited creations of the budding designers of the institute.

It was a display of class, creativity and blend of style and spirit as the models walked on the ramp. The rounds were named “amplifier personified”, inspired from the life of DJ and VJ rockers and their jazzy world, “desi grunge” presented the tradition of rich Indian heritage fabrics, “sneak preview”, “vekhi ja chedi na", "mithila" and "hastakshar".

The models, Montu Thapar, Anousha Chauhan, Nandini Vaidya, Sahiba Singh, Ritu Kapoor, Preeti and Pallavi Roy, dressed in western as well as traditional outfits, set the ramp on fire. Accessories like bangles, scarves, mufflers, bows, ties, bags and umbrellas were also displayed during the show.

While “vekhi ja chedi na”, inspired by the roadways buses, was adjudged the most innovative round, “mithila" bagged the prize in the most creative round category.

Designers Mani Batra, Gurpreet Kaur, Jasbir Kumar, Gaurav Sehgal, Sakshi Jain, Aaena Sharma, Ravneet Kaur, Shilpi Sachdeva, Kiranjot Kaur, Manoj Kumar, Nisha Kainth and Parul Malik were declared winners. 



Coaching classes fail to take off 
Likely to begin from Nov 1
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 1
Guru Nanak Khalsa College For Women, Gujarkhan Campus, which had proudly announced UGC-sponsored coaching classes (free or at subsidised rates) from September 1 on the college campus, today failed to begin the programme. The authorities maintain that due to some "technical problems" the classes could not be started as announced earlier. They, however, assured the classes would be started from November.

Earlier, the college had announced the starting of coaching classes for entry into services for minority communities at two levels: coaching for group B and C level posts and All India Services, state/provincial services from September 1.

According to sources, the college was able to get a grant of Rs 8 lakh in March for the programme. "But they have no proper infrastructure. Moreover, the college management has failed to get the guest faculty for teaching current affairs and general knowledge to the students preparing for competitive examinations," said one of the faculty members.

Shahira, a student, said if the college had announced the starting of coaching classes then they should have begun them today. "At least the authorities should have intimated students through the media," she said.

Meanwhile, both principal Gursharan Kaur and coordinator of the programme T.S.Arneja said that due to "technical faults", the classes could not be started. "But we are hopeful that we will start them from November 1,” said the principal.



Schools’ body submits memo to CM
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 1
To counter the demand for a hike in teachers' salary, the Association of the PSEB Affiliated Schools yesterday submitted a memorandum to Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal. A delegation, led by association president Rajinder Sharma, met the Chief Minister and apprised him of the problems like revenue, road tax, electricity and sewerage charges being faced by the affiliated schools. The association demanded that the affiliated schools be charged on the basis of domestic rates of electricity.

Sharma further said since school buses were meant to pick students from their homes and drop them to schools and back, it did not involve any commercial activity. Thus, the road tax imposed on these buses was an unnecessary burden on the school managements.

Sharma said the schools did not get any grant or financial assistance from the government which made it difficult for them to meet the requirements.

The Chief Minister assured the delegation of a definite solution to the problems being faced by the PSEB-affiliated schools.



Irregularities in Transfer
Asst director promises to make amends 
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana,September 1
In order to make amends in the alleged irregularities committed in transfer of orders during the ongoing process of the rationalisation of teachers,Surjit Kaur,assistant director (School Administration), heard the grievances of the surplus teachers at R.S.Model Senior Secondary School here today. She said irregularities had been detected and amendments to be immediately carried out.

While addressing the activists of the Democratic Teacher Front ( DTF) she said all general transfers had been withheld and teachers would be transferred to their respective zones only. Teachers complained that medical reasons cited by them had not been taken into consideration while going ahead with the transfer process.

A large number of teachers from all over the district who had been sitting in front of the school’s office since morning complained that transfers list was displayed late during the day. Those from the city complained that their panels are only airing the transfers of the rural teachers and no one seemed bothered about them. 



From Colleges
Mehak, Gunjan win essay-writing contest 
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 1
To encourage students to explore their creativity in prose, poetry and story writing, the department of English organised a creative- writing contest, here today. Principal R.K. Aulakh presided the function. Sunanda Joshi, head of the department, accorded a warm welcome to the principal.

Speaking on the occasion, Aulakh inspired the students to bring forth their imaginative streak and appreciated the efforts put by staff and the students. Gagan Preet Kaur, president of a literary society, proposed a vote of thanks. In essay writing Mehak Arora of BA III stood first while Gunjan Sachdeva of BA III stood second. In poetry writing Gaganpreet of B.Sc. III stood first and Navroop of BA I stood second.

Induction programme

Guru Nanak Institute of Management and Technology (GNIMT), Gujarkhan campus, organised an induction programme for MBA I and MCA I semester students, here today. To mark a beginning of new academic session, the director, faculty and all students of GNIMT went to Gurudwara Shaheedan to seek blessings of the Almighty.

Bhai Pinderpal Singh, a renowned spiritual orator, addressed the gathering and explained the divine hukamnama. He said the Almighty must not be forgotten at any cost. He told the students to have a strong value system and to give respect and seek blessings and guidance from their faculty. Later, in the campus seminar hall, Col H S Singha, director, GNIMT, gave a welcome address to the new entrants. He congratulated all of them for choosing a right career and a right college to pursue their career.



'Central status to PU against Punjab’s interests'
K. S. Chawla

Ludhiana, September 1
Manjit Singh Calcutta, a senior Akali leader and former education minister, today charged union minister of state for finance Pawan Kumar Bansal and principal secretary to Prime Minister for conspiring to get central status to Panjab University that belonged to Punjab.

Manjit Singh Calcutta, talking on phone from Kolkatta, said Pawan Kumar Bansal and BJP leaders of Chandigrh were hand in glove and Bansal was trying to gain his vote bank by getting the central status. “This is totally against the interests of Punjab and the Punjabis will not tolerate it,” he said.

Manjit Singh called up the Chief Minister to withdraw this letter referring central status to PU. He also urged the Prime Minister to reject any proposal for granting the status.

Manjit Singh warned that fate of Panjab University would be doomed like that of Allahabad University once central status was granted to it, Which had been saffronised.



From Schools
Tips given on healthy living
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 1
A workshop on healthy living was organised today at Sacred Heart School. Tarsem from Rishi Sanskriti Vidaya Kendre, Banglore, was the main speaker of the programme. He provided tips on a stress-free life. Principal Anju Banga said such programmes would prove to be a great help to the students and parents.

Clothes donated

Tiny Tots of Little Champs Playway School today donated clothes and other articles of daily need for the flood victims. School Principal Kuldeep Kaur said city residents should also take inspiration from small kids and donate generously towards the noble cause.

Freshers’ party

SDP Senior Secondary School today organised a function to welcome the freshers in the school. Karan Verma won the title of Mr Fresher, while Damanpreet Singh and Ansh Grover were declared first and second runners-up, respectively. President of SDP Sabha and educational institutions Balraj Bhasin said such constests provided confidence to the students. Principal Jasvir Chauhan welcomed the new students.

Quiz contest

Pre-primary wing of Guru Nanak International Public School organised a quiz contest in the series of 'Chote Ustad 2008' for second standard. The questionnaire round included grammer, mental ability and spellings etc. Principal B. Gulati encouraged the students and gave away the certificates to the winning team.

Poster making

Ishwar Singh, DIG, Ludhiana range, said a poster drawing competition on the theme of road safety among school students would be organised on September 8 at Sacred Heart Convent School by the Ludhiana traffic police. The DIG said the competition was being conducted to create awareness among students about the dangers of the ever-increasing road accidents and also to make them aware about various facets of road safety. The theme of the competition would be ‘How to make roads safer’. Two students from Classes VIII to XI from any school can participate in the competition. The participants were required to bring a full drawing sheet, a drawing board, pins and a colour box.

Bhajan contest

BCM Arya Model Senior Secondary School won the bhajan competition organised by Arya Samaj. Various city schools participated in the competition. Second prize was won by RS Model School while third prize went to Arya Kanya Gurukul. BCM, Focal Point and DAV School won consolation prizes.



Lsara team win kabaddi tourney
Our Correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh, September 1
Fandi of Lasara village and Pintho of Seeran village were declared the best raider and stopper, respectively at the 6th Kabaddi Cup Tournament organised by the Meehan Singh Gill Jhalli Sports Club at Sidhsar village near here. Sant Ekam Singh presided over the concluding function yesterday.

Teams of Lasara and Jargari villages bagged first and second prizes worth Rs 25,000 and 18,000, respectively, for showing outstanding performance in village open category. As many as 65 teams had participated in the category.

Boys of Lasara village and Chaunke village were declared winners and runners-up, respectively, in 70kg category. Over 50 teams were reported to have participated in the category.

As many as 40 teams participated in 60kg category and teams of Jhuner and Bathan villages emerged winners and runners-up, respectively.

The organisers presented bicycles to Chhember Singh, Kuljit Singh Lasara, Kaka Bathan and Kaka Chaunke for being best raiders and stoppers in their respective categories.

Pamma Buani and Khushi Mohammad acted as referees.

Jasbir Singh Nizampur, Devinder Singh sarpanch and Kulbir Singh gave away prizes.



Green Land karatekas win seven medals
Anil Datt
Our Sports Reporter

Ludhiana, September 1
Girl students of the Green Land Senior Secondary School, Jalandhar byepass branch, won seven medals, including one gold, in the Ludhiana Sahodaya Schools Complex Karate Championship organised at A S Modern Senior Secondary School, Khanna, recently.

According to a press note issued by the school here today, karatekas won medals in the u-14 and u-19 years sections. In the u-19 years section, Bhavika Jain bagged gold medal in the 46-50 kg category to prove her mettle.

In the same weight category, Twinkle Sachdeva secured silver medal while in the 41-45 kg section, Priyanka Kaushal finished runners-up and had to content with a silver medal. In the above 50 kg weight category, Shilpa Sharma won a bronze medal.

In the girl's (u-14) section, Himani Jain and Shikha Grover clinched a silver medal each in the 31-35 kg weight and 36-40 kg weight categories, respectively, while Manpreet Kaur won a bronze medal in the above 40 kg weight category.

Director of the school Rajesh Rudhra and principal Baldeep Pandher congratulated the winners. 



50 players attend grading camp
Our Sports Reporter

Ludhiana, September 1
As many as 50 players took part in a karate grading camp organised by the Punjab Ashihara Federation, Ludhiana, at GMT School, here today. The camp was inaugurated by federation chairman, Vijay Kumar Agnihotri.

He urged parents of students to encourage their wards to take part in the camp, which teaches the art of self defence and also makes one fit and healthy. Successful trainees were given certificates. Chief instructor, Sensei Pankaj Sahni, a black belt (Japan) along with a large number of other belts winners were present at the camp, who shared their experiences with the campers.



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