L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Veggies on the boil
Shveta Pathak
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 26
With prices looking up again, vegetables are getting out of common man’s reach. Prices of veggies, that had maintained a low for a few weeks, have started to soar again.

In retail markets the impact is more significant as retailers are quick to hike rates whereas in case of decline, they take time to pass on the benefit to customers.

Market traders said the prices are expected to increase further with the beginning of Navratras and wedding season.

In retail markets of posh areas, bitter gourd was available for Rs 60 per kilo, capsicum Rs 50-55 per kilo, garlic Rs 45, bitter gourd Rs 30, brinjal Rs 18, gourd Rs 20, radish Rs 20, lemon Rs 40, onion Rs 18-20 and potato Rs 20 per kilo.

Retail rates differed according to localities.

In wholesale markets, the price of potato, which was stable at around Rs 9 per kilo had now moved up to Rs 10, whereas onion that was available for Rs 7-7.50 was now priced at Rs 9.

Cauliflower has risen from Rs 10-12 per kilo to Rs 20, whereas gourd that had recorded a downfall to Rs 7-8 per kilo has again increased to Rs 15-16 per kilo.

The prices of other vegetables in wholesale markets were: cabbage Rs 9-10, French beans Rs 17-18 per kilo, garlic Rs 9-10, tomato Rs 25, ginger Rs 25-26, brinjal Rs 9-10 and capsicum Rs 28-30 per kilo.

Retailers said demand that had been dismal in the past few days had started to look up once again. “Demand had gone down significantly before. Prices too were affected. But now, there is an increase in both,” said Rakesh, a retailer in the Civil Lines area.

Traders said demand had started rising due to which prices were looking up. “In the coming days the prices would rise further as there would be a multiple increase in demand during wedding season and Navratras,” said Amarbir Singh, general secretary of the Ludhiana Fruit and Vegetable Commission Agents Association.


Train Robbery
Son of rly employee, 2 others on the run
Kuldip Bhatia

Ludhiana, September 26
Two unauthorised railway vendors and son of a railway employee at the Ludhiana railway station, accused of allegedly robbing passengers aboard the Amritsar-Saharsa Janasadharan Express on Wednesday night, are still at large.

Two others nabbed on the spot by the railway protection force (RPF) with the help of passengers have been remanded in the custody of the government railway police (GRP), Panipat.

The gang of five robbed passengers on the moving train between Dhandari and the Sirhind railway station after the train left Ludhiana on the night of September 24.

According to information, the robbers pulled the chain near the Sirhind railway station in a bid to escape. Passengers raised the alarm and two of them were apprehended by the RPF.

The other accused managed to flee. Since the crime had been committed within the jurisdiction of the GRP in Ludhiana, an FIR was registered and the case transferred to it for investigation.

SHO Gurnam Singh told The Tribune that those nabbed had been identified as Suraj and Amit, residents of Samalkha and Panipat in Haryana, respectively.

The other accused were Jeetu, son of a railway employee, Bombaiya and Deepu. Jeetu was employed by a contractor in the parcel office here. He said raids were being conducted to nab them.

The process had been set in motion to bring the arrested accused here on a production warrant for interrogation. An application would be moved in the Ambala court in this regard, he added



Rs 241 cr to be spent on sewerage
Jyotika Sood
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 26
The municipal corporation would be laying a sewerage network costing Rs 241 crore under Jawaharlal Nehru Urban Renewal Mission (JNURM). This was stated by MC commissioner G.S. Ghuman while talking to The Tribune here today.

He said under the project, 50 per cent of the expenditure would be paid by the central government while 30 per cent cost would be borne by the Punjab government. The rest would come from the municipal corporation.

The sewerage system would be laid within a year. About bus service, he said two routes — Ambedkar Chowk-bus stand and entry point (Samrala road) to bus stand — been approved.

Three other routes — Hambran road-bus stand, Ferozepur road octroi-bus stand and Pakhowal road-bus stand — had been sent for approval.

He said a route from the entry point on the Ambala road to the bus stand could not find any bidder. Sources said the bus service was likely to start in two weeks.

Speaking on the condition of roads, Ghuman said the MC had prepared an estimate of Rs 220 crore for undertaking recarpeting and had sent it to the state government.



Ultra-modern Focal Point for city soon
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 26
Ludhiana would soon have an ultra-modern industrial focal point which would provide the latest facilities to enterprises.

The industry would also be allocated plots to set up base here. This was stated by tourism minister Hira Singh Gabria at the annual conference of the United Cycle and Parts Manufacturers Association here today.

He said a notification on declaring residential areas, where a large number of industrial units were located, as industrial would be issued soon.

Parliamentary affairs, labour and employment minister Tikshan Sood, said the contribution of the industry towards the state's overall development was significant and the government was committed to encouraging this sector.

The mayor said the corporation would soon begin the recarpeting of roads, for which Rs 10 crore had been sanctioned.

The association submitted a charter of its demands to the government in which it raised issues like VAT refunds, power connections for green category units, and roads in industrial areas and focal points.



Anxious, deed writers skip work
Kanchan Vasdev
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 26
Panic has gripped sale deed writers, typists and advocates following the claims of the vigilance bureau that the sub-registrar-cum-tehsildar, Arvind Parkash Verma, had revealed several names involved in the sale deed registration racket.

Most deed writers, typists and advocates are staying away from their work even as the administration appointed a new sub-registrar two days ago.

Sources said many deed writers had gone underground and were not coming to the office since Friday, when Verma was arrested. Some typists were also staying away from office.

The vigilance had yesterday reportedly called a deed writer for questioning. He was let off after some hours. Vigilance officials were tightlipped about the issue.

“Every day, there are rumours about one deed writer or another. We do not know what to do. Everybody is scared and business is being affected badly,” a deed writer said.

“Though we are not involved in the racket, you never know who is the next one on the list. We do not know whose names Verma took. We are just acting on what we are hearing,” he added.

Real estate agents said their work was also suffering. People could not get sale deeds registered. “If somebody wants to buy, there are no deed writers. It is getting difficult,” one of them said.



Bribery Case: Tehsildar seeks bail
Legal Correspondent

Ludhiana, September 26
Tehsildar-cum-sub registrar Arvind Parkash Verma and another official Parminder Pal Singh today moved applications seeking bail in the bribery case of Rs 10,000.

The applications were filed in the court of sessions judge G.K. Rai. The applications would be taken up by the court tomorrow.

The two were arrested a few days ago by vigilance bureau officials following a complaint by an NRI. In their application, the two have claimed innocence.

Meanwhile, additional sessions judge G.S. Sran today dismissed the anticipatory bail application of third accused Gopal Krishan, a clerk of sub-registrar office.

Passing the order, the judge said it would not be appropriate to grant the concession of anticipatory bail to the accused in view of the serious allegations levelled against him.

The accused had pleaded that he was not present in the office at the time of the raid. He also produced on record an OPD card issued by the DMCH for the same day when the raid was conducted.

The public prosecutor had opposed the grant of bail to the accused.

He along with investigating officer Ravcharan Singh Brar submitted that the accused was present at the time of the raid.

They had recorded statements of certain witnesses to this effect, they claimed. They said the accused had fled with some records and keys to three almirahs sealed by them, which were later recovered from him.



IT survey on 6 units
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 26
Officials of the income tax department conducted surveys on six industrial enterprises at the Focal Point here today.

The surveys were conducted under the supervision of additional commissioner Rajeshwar Yadav and began this noon. These were on until the filing of this report.

According to sources, tax sleuths surveyed Safari Bikes, Diachi Overseas, Puneet Cycles, M.K. Processing, Supreme Agro Products Private limited and Kuttu Knit Processors.

The officials investigated computer records and bill books, besides the stock.

Sources said the department expected to unearth a large amount of undisclosed income.



Contracts for Licences
Five months on, transport office 
yet to open tenders
Anshu Seth
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 26
The district transport office has failed to open tenders for contract of computerised learning and driving licences even after the lapse of five months.

The office had invited tenders for both contracts of learning and permanent driving licence through a newspaper advertisement dated 13.4.08 scheduled to be opened on April 21, which had not been opened so far.

The contracts are given for a period of one year but the district transport office here continues to engage the services of last year’s contractors.

Further violating the RTI Act, the office also denied information to Manjinder Singh, who had submitted his tender for the contract of learner’s licence on scheduled date.

“It is obvious that officials are facilitating old contractors for their vested interest,” alleged Manjinder.

Registering his protest on the working of the office, he said: “I had submitted my tender with a demand draft of Rs 25,000 in favour of the DTO, Ludhiana. On my visit to the office on April 21, district transport officer Chander Gaind said tenders would be opened after the end of code of conduct for zila parishad and panchayat elections on June 30.”

He along with other applicants paid repeated visits to the office but to no avail, as officials failed to dispense any information on the issue.

Thereafter, Manjinder filed an application under the RTI Act to seek information from the office on July 17 but the clerk concerned refused to accept it. “Following this, the ADTO (the designated information officer) took the application stating that it was the DTO’s prerogative to decide for the registration. However, he didn’t give any registration number,” stated Manjinder.

In what could be termed as non-compliance of orders of higher authorities, the district transport office has also ignored the directions of the Punjab State Transport Commissioner wherein he had directed the office to provide the information vide letter number PIO/RTI/22368 dated August 4.

Chander Gaind said the file was with deputy commissioner Sumer Singh Gurjjar who had to decide on the matter.



From Schools & Colleges
Dengue awareness rally
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 26
Bhutta College of Education organised a dengue awareness rally here today in two adjoining villages of Bhutta and Seelon. Students and staff of the college participated actively in the rally. The students raised slogans and carried banners like "machchar bhagao, dengue hatao”, “cooler da pani, machchar da hani aur dengue di samjho shuru kahani”, to create awareness about the dengue fever. They also distributed posters and pamphlets to disseminate information regarding causes, symptoms and preventive measures of the disease.

Awareness programme

A dengue awareness programme was organised at GMT College of Education. Students were made aware of precautions to be taken to prevent the spread of the dengue fever. Resource person Bhupinder Kaur said precaution was better than cure. Dr H.S. Sidhu, addressing the future teachers, exhorted them not to restrict their role to teaching alone but also to take social responsibility.

Freshers' party

Senior students of Gobindgarh Public College, Alour (Khanna), organised a freshers' party on the college campus to welcome first year students of BA, B.com, BCA and BBA. Principal Dr Suresh Tandon welcomed Piara Singh Kali, president, GESWT, N.K. Khanna, secretary, GESWT, Pawan Sharda, treasurer, GESWT, Vimal Vinod Banal, chairman, GPC along with members of GESWT and freshers of the college. The students participated with great vigour in items like folk song, group dance, laughter challenge and games. Later, a dance party was also held for the freshers.

NSS camp

Imbibing the spirit of the motto "not me, but you", a 10-day NSS camp was inaugurated at Ramgarhia Girls' College, here today by principal Jasbir Kaur to commemorate NSS day. The camp commenced with tree plantation on the college campus followed by an audio-visual presentation on traffic rules by the computer department.


To magnify the exuberance in retail expectation, the department of business management of Khalsa College for Women, Civil Lines, organised a national seminar on "Retail Revolution". The programme commenced with a welcome address by principal Dr Varinder Kaur Thind. In the inaugural session, the first lecture was delivered by P.P.S. Grewal, president, Khalsa Dewan, who stressed the importance of such seminar. The keynote address was given by Dr M.A. Zahir, chairman, SBS, and former dean, PAU. He brought to the fore, the retail revolution and how it should be taken as a challenge or an opportunity. Resource person Bikramjit Singh Mann, the department of commerce and business administration, GNDU, dwelled on international and national brands vis-à-vis Indian retail. Prof H.S. Bhalla, vice-principal, Government College of Ajnala, Dr Sandeep Kapur, the department of business management, PAU and members of the managing committee of KCW were also present.

‘Rhyme a mime’

"Rhyme a mime" competition was held at G.D. Goenka Public School. Students of nursery and KG participated with a great enthusiasm. They recited the rhymes and also used props. The kids were dressed according to the theme of their rhyme. Headmistress Deep Bedi appreciated the efforts of the little ones. Winners of the contest were Prachi Seth, Samarth Sareen and Paarvi Verma from nursery and Dhruv Gambhir, Harshit Mittal, Niharika Puri, Pranjal Makkar and Jhanvi Makkar from KG.

Handwriting contest

An English handwriting competition was organised for Class I and II at G.D. Goenka Public School here today. Winners included Pranav Gupta, Ananya Saha and Amitoj Kaur from Class I and Ishwardeep Singh, Vridi Jindal and Arnav Sharma from Class II.

Declamation contest

A declamation contest was held at Bhartiya Vidya Mandir Senior Secondary School for Class I and II, in which 27 students participated. Topics were "Mahatama Gandhi ji" and "Shri Lal Bahadur Shastri". Winners were awarded with prizes by vice-principal Madhu Soni.



PAU, Mahindra sign memo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 26
Punjab Agricultural University (PAU) and Farm Equipment Sector (FES) of tractor manufacturer Mahindra and Mahindra signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) here today.

According to Dr P.K. Gupta, dean, college of agricultural engineering, PAU, who welcomed the representatives and other participants, said the MoU would felicitate industry-academia interaction on a regular basis. It is aimed at setting up collaborative training facilities and mechanisms for common benefit, and encourage R and D facilities among students and faculty on mutually agreed projects.

Terming the signing of MoU as a win-win situation, PAU vice-chancellor Dr Manjit Singh Kang said both the PAU and the FES had a common denominator of serving farmers.

He expressed confidence that the tie-up would provide benefit to students, enabling them to keep themselves abreast with latest technology and industry requirement.

He added that the PAU had signed agreements with several other industrial organisations as well.

FES’s chief operating officer Gautam Nagwekar said: “The MoU is a trendsetting initiative in industry-academia partnership to address the problem of skill resources in Indian industry. The synergies between the two will set a new trend in Indian agriculture.”

He added that their company had two tractor manufacturing plants in Mohali and a programme beyond tractors. He said they could be global leaders as the largest tractor manufacturing company in terms of numbers produced.

Nagwekar said they had recently acquired 51 per cent share of Yancheng Tractors, China.

He added that under the farm tech prosperity programme, Mahindra was focussing on grapes, potato value chain and seed business. “We have developed ‘Smridhi centres’ and provided soil water testing service,” said Nagwekar.

He said using agri-wastes for generating power could be a worthwhile option for an economically viable business model.

Nagwekar said last year they produced over one lakh tractors and carried out export of Rs 250 crore worth of grapes. Their main focus would be on seed potato. Training of farmers would also be undertaken by their company, he said.

Vishal Bector introduced the dignitaries to the house, while Prof V.K. Sehgal, estate officer-cum-chief engineer, proposed the vote of thanks.



PAU students’ protest enters third day
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 26
Strike of the Punjab Agriculture University Students’ Association (PAUSA) entered its third day here today. The agitating students met the vice-chancellor in the morning regarding their long-pending demands following which a meeting was convened in the evening here today.

During the first round of talks, the students demanded a written assurance by the university authorities regarding the fulfillment of their demands, failing which, they said they would continue with their agitation.



10-day NSS camp at Khalsa college
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 26
As many as 150 NSS volunteers are participating in a 10-day NSS camp organised at Khalsa College for Women, Sidhwan Khurd. Principal Dr. Parmajit Kaur inaugurated the 10-day camp.

Keeping in mind the slogan "healthy youth for healthy India", the NSS volunteers are being exposed to the importance of healthy youth in building healthy India. Through practical demonstrations and expert talks the students will be acquainted with the latest know-hows so that they could contribute their might in progress and prosperity of the country.

Apart from bringing transformation in the college in context of its upkeep, cleanliness and maintenance, the NSS volunteers will also organise a rally in the village to awake women folk about the need of healthy environment, which will eventually pave the way for healthy India. Under the guidance of Prof Rajwinder Kaur, Varinder Kaur and Shalini Gupta, the students are actively engaged in the organisation so that a sense of responsibility and organising ability could be drilled into them. 



Release bonus: BSNL staff
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 26
Members of the BSNL employees union today held a demonstration in front of the office of the general manager. They are demanding the early release of bonus and a minimum pay of Rs 10,000. The protest was held all over Punjab.

Balbir Singh, circle secretary, and Balwinder Singh, district secretary of the union, said the management of the BSNL was not releasing bonus on the pretext that the profit had reduced during the last financial year. They said the employees could not be blamed for the reduction in profit.

“The profit has gone down mainly due to its inability to provide connection because of lack of mobile line capacity. Stiff competition in the telecom sector has compelled the management to reduce tariff, which has also resulted in reduction in the total revenue for 2007-08,” Balbir Singh said.

Mullanpur Mandi: The BSNL authorities held a meeting with consumers to address public grievance here yesterday.

GM N.K. Aggarwal, DGM M.S. Dhaliwal, DET Parveen Kumar and SDOs of Mullanpur, Gujjarwal, Baddowal, Delhon heard the grievances of people. People were also informed about the services being provided by the BSNL.

Aggarwal said the problem of poor signal would be resolved shortly as around 100 towers would be set up in the district.

He added that 67 villages had been given 64 ports each for broadband Internet connections. An interactive IP TV would be launched within one month for broadband subscribers.



Platinum jubilee  celebrations at DMCH
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 26
As a part of platinum jubilee celebrations of the Medical Council of India (MCI), a symposium-cum-workshop on the topic “Trends in medical education: Role of information technology” will be held at Dayanand Medical College and Hospital (DMCH) tomorrow.

Dr. Baldev Singh Aulakh, head of transplant unit, Dayanand Medical College, Ludhiana, in a statement issued today stated that the body was established in 1934 under the Indian Medical Council Act, 1933.

The council not only deals with the issues regarding medical education but also deals with social and ethical issues, which directly deal with the medical fraternity, Dr. Aulakh said.

There are 281 medical colleges throughout India recognised or permitted by the MCI and there are 30,888 undergraduate students and 45 medical colleges of India, which are celebrating the platinum jubilee by organising discussions on various topics.



Conference on transplant surgery
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 26
Pioneers in the field of transplant surgery will attend the 19th annual conference of the Indian Society of Organ Transplant on October 17 and 18 here.

Dr Baldev Singh Aulakh, professor of urology and transplant surgery and head of transplant surgery at the DMCH, said Dr Abhinav Humar would be among the keynote speakers. He is an expert in the field of abdominal transplantation.



121 units of blood donated
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 26
The Krantikari Shaheed Bhagat Singh Sewa Dal collected 121 units of blood during a day-long blood donation camp here today.

Youngsters donated blood under the supervision of a blood bank team from Dayanand Medical College and Hospital. Dal president Sarwan Attari and chairman Raju Kanojia called upon students to stay away from scuffles and urged them to work for social causes.



Roads in pitiable condition

Roads of urban estate, Dugri, are in a pitiable condition. There are big potholes in the roads. During rainy season it becomes very difficult to move on these roads. Residents of the area approached the area counsellor and municipal authorities but no action has been taken fo far.

During the last municipal elections, many promises were made but none had been fulfilled. The residents appealed to the municipal authorities to take immediate steps in this regard.

Manjit Singh Mehram, 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.



Sant Ishar begin campaign in style
Our Sports Reporter

Ludhiana, September 26
Hosts Sant Ishar Singh Ji Memorial Public School, Karamsar (Rara Sahib), began their campaign on a sound note beating Sacred Heart Convent School, Jagraon, 7-1 in the North Zone II Inter-School Hockey Tournament, which started on the school campus ground, Karamsar, near here, today.

In the inaugural match, Shah Satnam Ji Public School, Sirsa, too registered a 5-0 win over Police Public School, Hisar, while in another match played between Mehta Gurukul School, Doraha, and Apollo International Public School, Sonepat, the former emerged triumphant 2-1.

In the fourth match of the day, MDN Public School, Rohtak, thrashed DAV Public School, Gurgaon, 6-0. In another match between JD Senior Secondary School, Rohtak, and Shaheed Darshan Singh Public School, Rayyia, Rohtak school romped home victors 4-0.

In other matches, Pooja Modern Public School, Pipli, thrashed Police DAV School, Jalandhar Cantonment 7-0, while Police Public Senior Secondary School, Hisar, defeated GGS Public School, Sangrur, 5-0.

Earlier, Baba Jarnail Singh inaugurated the tournament in which teams from North India are taking part.

School principal Gurinderpal Singh welcomed the teams.



3 LBA lads for north zone meet
Our Sports Reporter

Ludhiana, September 26
Three players of the Ludhiana Badminton Academy (LBA) have been selected to represent Punjab in the North Zone Badminton Championship to be held at Hans Raj Stadium, Jalandhar, from September 28 to 30.

Academy honorary secretary Anupam Kumaria said Raj Kumar, Lakhwinder Singh Punnu and Anand Tiwari were picked up for the forthcoming event during the trials held at Jalandhar.

The LBA had fielded three players for trials and all performed well.



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