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Festivals leave Satluj stinking
Residents seek directions to save the river
Kanchan Vasdev
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, February 6
While the Satluj is already polluted, especially by Budda Nullah, it becomes a victim of religious festivals.

While the devotees immersed idols of Goddess Saraswati, mostly made of plaster of paris, in the river during the celebrations of Basant Panchami, they left polythene bags, flowers and eatables on the bank of the river.

As soon as the festival ended, the bank of the river was crying for attention, left polluted all the more. Being a second home to a large number of Bihari migrants, the city has been witnessing their festivals regularly with Basant Panchami being the first festival of the year.

The city is already facing the problem of water pollution, neither the state government, nor the local administration has issued any directions guiding the residents for celebrations on the banks of water bodies.

While the local residents have all regards for the festival of migrants, the problem arises when they leave the banks of canals with litters of garbage, especially polythene bags and flowers.

The state has been witnessing the celebrations for the past decades when the migrant labour population started swelling. The festivities are at its feverish best in this city which has the highest number of labourers from other states. ‘‘We respect their festivals. But things have come to such a pass that we start bothering about pollution in our rivers. And we really have to take the pollution causing religious festivals seriously. We have to show a direction to people so that their sentiments are not hurt and at the same time, the river is not polluted.’’ said a resident.

As the festival is centred around water bodies, the labourers chose the Satluj river since water level was low in the Sidhwan canal. Environmentalists demanded that a directive should be issued by the district administration so that the banks were not polluted all the more.

They demanded that the devotees should be asked to refrain from littering and clean up the banks before they leave. ‘‘This does not require much effort. We do anything to please our Gods and Goddesses. We can save our waters too religiously, ’’ said residents.

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Felling of trees in court complex
Day 2: Rare birds lose habitat
Kanchan Vasdev
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, February 6
Even as 1,700 trees are being axed in the Old Sessions Court complex and many birds protected under the Wildlife Protection Act are losing their eggs and nests, officials of different departments expressed their inability to do anything to save either the trees or the birds.

The felling of trees started yesterday and many were uprooted by this evening even as officials of different departments as well as residents proved to be just mute spectators.

Except a few residents who protested against the felling, there was no effect of cutting of trees on anybody. The city witnessed plundering of green lungs even as the country has lost 90 per cent forest cover over the years.

Divisional Forest Officer Mahavir Singh said since the trees did not stand on forest land, they could not do anything to save these. The responsibility rests with the Punjab Urban Planning and Development Authority (PUDA) to see, he added.

The PUDA officials, requesting anonymity, said the company, which was allotted the land had got permission from Chief Administrator, PUDA, for felling the trees. He added the forest department officials, too, were taken into confidence and the company was asked to pay for the trees also.

While the Forest and PUDA officials passed the buck on each other, an animal rights activist Dr S.K. Jain said even if the forest department had given them permission, the habitat of protected birds could not be destroyed.

He said peacock was protected under Schedule-I and other birds under Schedule-IV of the Wildlife Protection Act. Their nests and eggs could not be destroyed like these.

R.K. Luna, Chief Wildlife Warden, Punjab, however, said they could not do anything for the birds. If the government had given permission for felling of trees, they could help the birds.

‘‘We cannot take away the nests so as to save these. The birds will themselves make nests at some other place,’’ said Luna. He could not say anything about the damage being done to the eggs of protected birds.

Dr Jain said it was a shame that nobody was bothering about trees as well as birds. ‘‘In a city like Ludhiana people spend lakhs on transplanting trees like palm in their houses for their beauty. But we are not doing anything for these trees, many of which are rare species. Why should we look up to the government? We can too get these trees transplanted in our lawns. Only a will is required, ’’ he added. 

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Green trees fall prey to civil hospital axe
Anshu Seth
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, February 6
Dozens of full grown green trees were axed on the premises of the Ludhiana Civil Hospital a few days back even as the authorities concerned expressed their helplessness over the issue. A visit to the civil hospital revealed that some trees were been axed to the roots while others were cut to half.

It is learnt from the hospital staff that there was no word about felling of trees as they were not an obstruction in any development work. On the contrary, it was shocking for a majority of the doctors and paramedical staff when more than a dozen grown-up trees of different varieties, including peepal, sheesham, eucalyptus were axed.

A senior doctor at the hospital stated that green cover is the most significant part of the infrastructure in hospitals and other health centres as it conveys the message of good health. "Nobody understands the underlying implications of the green and clean environs better than the medical fraternity and cutting down of the full grown trees here is equivalent to a serious crime," he added.

Contrary to the classroom teaching wherein every student is taught about the importance of planting trees, the civil hospital, which is the nucleus of intellectuals who know more about the hazards of cutting down trees, the action is rather despicable, observed a professor of a local college.

When contacted, District Forest Officer Mahavir Singh said that he too had received reports of the incident, but expressed his helplessness to initiate action saying “The permissible limit to prune the trees is up to 1/3 of its total length and anything beyond that is an offence. I cannot interfere in the matter as the trees are the hospital's property. It would be the department authorities who can challenge this act and initiate proper action," the DFO said.

However, SMO, Civil Hospital, Dr Harvinder Singh was adamant that the trees were not cut down but pruned which was a regular exercise. 

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Experts caution against GM foods
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, February 6
Joining hands with the ongoing campaign called "I am not a lab rat" against genetically modified (GM) foods like Bt Brinjal, eminent doctors of Punjab have cautioned the state and central governments against the introduction of such foods in India.

The products have been banned in the USA and European countries but are being dumped in India in the name of serving the “poor and needy” people, observed the doctors.

Dr GPI Singh, Professor and head of the department of community medicine at the DMCH, stated that soya products, American corns and its byproducts and various other chips and canned food items are amongst the genetically modified foods which have “fatal effect” on the human anatomy. "Genetic Engineering Approval Committee (GEAC) and FSSA Food Standards Safety Authority (FSSA) are playing little role to regulate the free flow of these products in India, which have been banned by the developed countries."

The doctors also referred to Dr Pushpa Bhargava (appointed by the Supreme Court) who had pointed out towards the regulatory regime's shortcomings, adding that independent, long-term research was yet to be initiated on Bt Brinjal and that investigations on health problems related to Bt Cotton were still to be taken up.The doctors called for an immediate moratorium on all GM foods. "An outdated technology used in Bt Brinjal incorporating antibiotic resistant markers is likely to have disastrous implications for developing countries like India, which are struggling with communicable diseases burden. This may jeopardise National Health Programmes for the control of Tuberulosis (already struggling with MDR/ XDR tuberculosis), diarrhoeal diseases, sexually transmitted diseases etc," pointed Dr GPI Singh.

Dr Inderjeet Kaur of the All India Pingalwara Charitable Society said the companies promoting GM crops are spreading the wrong word about increase in yield, as it is otherwise. We have proved it through manifold increase in yield through herbal methodology in agriculture in our fields and farms in village Jandiala."

Dr L S Chawla, former Vice-Chancellor of the Baba Farid University of Health Sciences, said, "Allowing GM foods like Bt Brinjal without prominent labelling will be a violation of a consumer's right to know what she/he is eating, right to decide and right to safe food. Bt Brinjal did not undergo any independent, long term testing and it is already well-established that GM foods leave several adverse impacts including inter-generational effects. In this context, the precautionary approach is the best way forward. There is really no need for this unsafe GM Brinjal in India.

Meanwhile, Dr Daljit Singh, principal DMCH reiterated the comments of Dr Chawla and said that it is the prime responsibility of the manufacturer to ensure that no genetically modified food or other biological product is released into the environment, and it must be the function of regulatory authorities to ensure this. In any case, mere bio-safety studies for a potentially dangerous product are insufficient, full fledged "Impact" studies including long-term ecological impact, are desirable and the data should be freely accessible for public scrutiny.

Bt Brinjal will play havoc with the Ayurveda and Siddha, wherein herbs (including Brinjal) are used according to the taste (Rasa), medicinal property of phyto-chemical (Guna), strength (Veerya), the end taste after digestion (Vipaaka Rasa) and synergistic medicinal property (Prabhaava). 

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Insurance company directed to pay Rs 1 lakh relief
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, Feburary 6
The District Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum here has ordered the United India Insurance company India to pay claim of Rs 1.01 lakh.

President of the forum JS Chawla and member Jagjit Kaur Mander also directed the company to pay Rs 10,000 as litigation charges.

The orders were passed on the complaint of Mohit Malhotra of Palam Vihar, Gurgaon.

Malhotra had pleaded before the forum that he had taken insurance policy from the company for his vehicle Innova for January 25,2007 to Janary 24,2008.

On February 13, 2007, the car met with an accident near Ambala and it was brought to Ludhiana and sent to the car dealer, got the vehicle 
repaired and claim filed with the company with bills. However, the company repudiated the claim.

Insurance company officials pleaded the consumer had violated the terms and conditions of the policy and did not have valid licence to drive the car. After appraising evidence on record, the forum held the complainant was competent to drive the Innova, as per law.

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Bank staff hold demonstration
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, February 6
On a call given by State Sector Bank Employees' Association (SSBEA), employees of associate banks today held a demonstration in front of State Bank of Patiala, regional office, Miller Ganj, Ludhiana, against the "adamant and uncompromising attitude" of the State Bank of India management.

Addressing the employees, Naresh Gaur, secretary, State Bank of Patiala Employees' Union, AK Chhibber, vice-president, Ashok Malhan, assistant secretary, KK Jaggi, organizing secretary and GS Dania, central committee member, All-India State Bank of Patiala Officers' Association, said in the past when housing loan schemes, car loan, overdraft limits, festival loan etc were implemented, these were extended to the associate banks on similar lines.

More than 10 months back, these schemes were amended. Despite repeated requests and agitations, including dharnas and demonstrations, the SBI management had not exceeded to their requests. Even small matters such as root canal treatment facility has been extended to officers only but not to award staff.

Leaders of the federation said bipartite discussions with the representatives of the SSBEA were not being held on the plea that in discussions only representatives who were in active service of the bank could participate which was an attack on basic trade union rights. Even discussions were taking place at the Indian Banks' Association and in nationalised banks. There were no such restrictions.

Leaders of the federation said as a result of the struggle of the SSBEA against merger of associate banks with the SBI, the SBI management has postponed the idea of merger but it has not finally dropped the move.

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CCTV cameras at dumping sites only on paper
Jyotika Sood
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, February 6
The Municipal Corporation's policy of "quick to order and late to implement" came to fore once again on the installation of CCTV cameras at garbage dump sites.

Though the Finance and Contracts Committee (F&CC) had ordered the installation of CCTV cameras at its meetings on December 17, 2008, officials have failed to work on the orders till date.

According to directions by the committee, the officials were asked to construct observation rooms and install GPS (global positioning system) on all vehicles that had been employed for transporting garbage from various areas to the dump yards. However, nothing has been done till date.

With the officials not taking it as a priority, it seems that they themselves are not ready to mechanise the civic body at the lower level due to the reason best known to them.

Interestingly, the decision to instal these devices was taken to keep a check on the drivers of the garbage vehicles who reportedly sublet their work to others. Besides, the drivers have also been accused of not taking exact number of rounds for carrying garbage as prescribed to them.

The decision on cameras and GPS came after the idea was mooted out by Local Bodies Chief Parliamentary Secretary Harish Rai Dhanda during the municipal house meeting. Dhanda had said there were reports of diesel embezzlement by these garbage carrying vehicles. He accused the MC of pilfering of diesel and petroleum and said CCTV cameras would help monitor the functioning of garbage vehicles.

Talking to The Tribune, the Municipal Corporation's assistant medical officer Charanjit Singh Uppal said, "The work is still under progress. I was just asked to show the sites for the installation of the CCTV cameras to the company which I have done." He added that due to engineers on casual leave for the past two days the work has been suffering.

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Business volumes on LSE fall
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, February 6
Volumes of business on the Ludhiana Stock Exchange (LSE), which operates through its subsidiary LSE Securities, have fallen drastically ever since the indices on Indian stock markets have nosedived first in January 2008 and then in October 2008.

The average daily turnover which once touched a high of over Rs 1,200 crore when indices peaked in early January 2008 has now come down to about Rs 250 to Rs 300 crore, thus recording a fall of about 75 to 80 per cent. This turnover pertains to volumes registered in three segments i.e. capital markets segments of the BSE and the NSE and also futures and options segment of the NSE.

Experts in the market feel that this has been mainly due to a steep fall in stock prices from third week of January, 2008, onwards when in early January, 2008, the benchmark BSE Sensex touched a peak of 21,207. Subsequently, in end January, 2008, the Sensex came down to touch a low of about 16,000.The Sensex recovered to some extent and for a major part of 2008, it traded in the range between 10,000 and 18,000. However, in October/November, 2008, the Sensex again crashed to touch a low of 7,695.

According to RC Singhal, former president, Ludhiana Stock Exchange, the worldwide recession and slowdown has adversely affected the stock markets all over the world. In India, the other factor that is political factor in view of impending elections to the Lok Sabha is also cause for concern. Analysts in the market are of the opinion that at least till the election process is over, the Sensex is expected to trade range bound between 8000 and 10,500.

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Shatabdi likely to be withdrawn from Feb 8
Kuldip Bhatia

Ludhiana, February 6
After its failure to find favour with the regular travellers from the city to the national capital after two-trial runs of a month each, the Ludhiana-New Delhi winter special Shatabdi Express (2013A/2014A) is likely to be withdrawn from February 8 when it completes its second inning. Indications are that the train which will leave for New Delhi on Sunday morning will not undertake its return journey late in the evening.

The train had its first trial run in December with poor occupancy rate (around 25-30 per cent) and the railway authorities had given it yet another chance when the Shatabdi was extended once again from January 11 to February 8.

With hopes that the passenger traffic will improve once the foggy and extremely cold weather conditions took a turn for the better, the divisional railway officials at Ferozepur had made a positive recommendation to the Northern Railway headquarters for the continuation of the special Shatabdi. In fact, the divisional level railway officers had suggested that the train should be extended to Jalandhar to take in some more passenger traffic in the wake of huge waiting list on both Shatabdi trains running between Amritsar and New Delhi in the morning and evening. Some of the frequent travellers to the national capital attributed the failure of special Shatabdi to many factors, including late running of the train during its journey from New Delhi to Ludhiana.

Sanjeev Bansal, a city businessman, who had travelled by this train a couple of times, said on its return journey to the city, Shatabdi was late by anything from half an hour to an hour. "Given a choice, any one undertaking an up-down journey to New Delhi will prefer to travel by Amritsar-New Delhi Shatabdi due its convenient timing from both ends," he added. Meanwhile, the Northern Railway headquarters have further extended 0403/0404 Delhi-Udhampur Express special train up to March 5. It was earlier introduced from January 8 to February 7.

The train will continue on its earlier schedule of departing from Udhampur at 9.40 PM reaching Delhi at 10.15 AM while the up train will leave Delhi at 11.45 PM and arrive at Udhampur at 1.10 PM. It will have stoppages at Panipat, Ambala Cantt, Ludhiana, Chakki Bank and Jammu Tawi with 2 tier AC, 3 tier AC, sleeper and general coaches.

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Over 1,500 Akalis Join Cong
Our Correspondent

Mullanpur Dakha, February 6
Former Chief Minister Capt Amarinder Singh received a shot in yesterday when over 1,500 Akali workers joined the Congress under his banner.

Major Singh Mullanpuri, president Youth Akali Dal, North America, Gurpal Singh Ranke, District vice-president, SAD, Ludhiana, sarpanch Sukhwant Singh Chak Kalan, former district president, Youth Akali Dal, Harjinder Singh Bhatha Dhua, senior Youth Akali leader, Ajmer Singh Majri, sarpanch and senior Akali leader, Talwinder Singh Grewal, Youth Akali leader and former president, GNE College, Ludhiana, joined the Congress party along with scores of their supporters. Capt Amarinder Singh and Rajinder Kaur Bhattal welcomed all of them into the party fold.

Besides this, Kulwant Singh Kaind of BSP, Raikot, and Nihang Joginder Singh of Budhewal also joined the Congress with their supporters.

Major Singh alleged that the SAD workers were fed up with the self-centred policies of Sukhbir Singh Badal. The incarnation of Badal Jr was the last nail in the coffin of SAD and unable to tolerate his harsh policies, they joined the Congress. 

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Akali rebel joins Cong 
Lovleen Bains

Doraha, February 6
Rebel Akali leader, Jagjiwan Pal Singh Gill, frustrated at the treatment meted out to him by the Akalis finally joined the Congress ysterday.

He would formally declare his joining the Congress at a function organised in the honour of former Chief Minister Capt Amarinder Singh on February 12 at Doraha.

Gill, while blaming the Akali leaders, said they had failed to honour the sentiments of the loyal and dedicated workers. This is obvious from the fact the party had given posts to those who are alien to the area and were unaware of the needs and demands of the locals.

Prominent Akali leaders of the Payal constituency have expressed their solidarity towards Gill and promised him their full support in the coming Lok Sabha elections.

Prominent among those present on the occasion were Jathedar Jarnail Singh Shahpur, Darshan Singh Rabbon, Gurmit Singh Lapran, Jagtar Singh Koohli, Harnek Singh Rajgarh, Nirmal Singh Chapran, Tara Singh Maksoodra and Bhinder Singh. 

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Kisan club holds annual function

Ludhiana, February 6
The annual function of Kisan Club was held today at PAU. Sucha Singh Langah, Minister for Agriculture, Punjab was the chief-guest.

Speaking on this occasion, Dr. Manjit Singh Kang, Vice-Chancellor, PAU said that University was strengthening its research on agricultural biotechnology to develop new improved varieties with built-in pest and disease resistance. Dr. N.S.Malhi, director of Extension Education, PAU, appreciated the Punjab Government for initiating programmes for the benefit of farmers. — TNS

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Getting bills cleared tough task for varsity staff
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, February 6
Employees and departments at both Punjab Agricultural University (PAU) and Guru Angad Dev Veterinary and Animal Sciences University (GADVASU) here have alleged harassment at the hands of officials and staff of the audit department near Thapar Hall at PAU.

They said for getting their pending bills cleared, people had to wait for several days. They also alleged that after much persuasion, if files were cleared, certain auditors would sit on these until their palms were greased. Despite regular complaints and appeals, the working at audit department had not been streamlined, said the employees of both varsities.

Inderpal Singh, senior vice-president of the GADVASU Non-Teaching Employees Union told The Tribune that the audit work of both universities was being looked after by Deputy Controller, Local Audit, near Thapar Hall. And the whole staff was being paid salaries to the tune of Rs 46 lakh by both varsities on behalf of the state government. Except for telephones, electricity or salaries, all bills were cleared by the audit department.

"No bill gets cleared before 20 days here by the audit department staff. They have a habit of piling up the bills because of which the departments and employees suffer a lot", said Inderpal Singh.

The president of the non-teaching employees union of GADVASU, Anil Sabharwal, said due to their callous attitude, the employees were made to suffer. "Ours is an educational institution.

How can the employees or heads of the departments bribe the auditors, the way people do in Municipal Corporation or Local Bodies? Genuine bills are raised and audit staff has no right to raise unnecessary objections to harass the employees or department heads but the practice is openly being done for vested interests and no body can stop them", said Sabharwal, adding that this way the credibility of leading premier institutions was put at stake and the image was tarnished.

"The companies give things on credit but for days altogether, we fail to make payments as audit department does not clear the bill", said Sabhawral.

Senior vice-president of the PAU Non-Teaching Employees Union Lakhwinder Sandhu said certain staff members in the department acted as middlemen.

Ramji Lal, assistant controller, audit department, PAU, said work was being suffered as they had staff shortage. The delay was not deliberate as on six sanctioned posts of officers, just two officers were working. "The allegations of bribery are baseless. When we fail to clear files on time due to staff shortage, people level allegations against us", he said.

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Ectopia-2009 takes off at DMCH
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, February 6
The three-day annual cultural programme “Ectopia-2009” got off to a colourful start at Dayanand Medical College and Hospital (DMCH) with much fanfare at Dumra Auditorium yesterday evening.

The undergraduate medical students will compete with one another for top honours in various talent hunt competitions.

Dr Daljit Singh, principal, DMCH, applauded the efforts of the students and the staff for organising the programme and wished best of luck to the participants.

Dr Sandeep Puri, chairperson, DMCH cultural committee, said more than 300 students of undergraduate classes would be participating in different events and various talent hunt competitions during this three-day cultural extravaganza. The chief guests and faculty members were presented with a copy of “Ectopia Times” which showcased the events to be organised during the cultural bonanza and interesting facts about the faculty and students.

The function began with “Ad Fads” in which the students had to conceptualise and enact an advertisement based on a humorous concept of product/services. The excellent performance and humorous ideas left the audience in splits. The first position in Ad Fads was bagged by batch 2004, second by batch 2005 and third was a tie between batches 2006 & 2008. In “group song” segment, students from 2008 batch were the winners followed by the students of batches 2006 and 2005 on second and third positions respectively.

Nupur of batch 2005 was adjudged first in solo dance competition followed by Vaini of batch 2006 on second and Tanureet of batch 2008 batch on third position. Praful (2007), Saminder(2004) and Devinder(2008) were the winners in boys solo dance category .

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Poem recitation contest at GGPS
Our Correspondent

Doraha, February 6
Green Grove Public School organised an inter-house poem recitation competition today.

Students of different houses recited poems on different topics such as pollution, terrorism, fashions and importance of time or success. Akansha of Nehru House and Rashmi and Ravinder Singh, both from Tilak House, bagged the first positions. Akanksha's poem "Don't forget" urged countrymen to remember the sacrifices made by the freedom fighters.

Chashandeep of Tilak House, Tanveer Kaur of Nehru House and Subhpreet of Gandhi House jointly bagged the second positions. The poem "Kuriyan Chiriyan Muk Chaliya Ne" recited by Chashandep called for banning the female foeticide.

Third position was, however, secured collectively by Sukhneer of Gandhi House, Navpreet Kaur of Nehru House and Aashna of Nehru House.

At the end, president JPS Jolly along with principal S. George congratulated the winners and praised their efforts for being concerned about the problems being faced by the society.

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Godman, 3 booked for murder 
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, February 6
The Basti Jodhewal police has booked a godman and his three accomplices for allegedly murdering his driver.

According to the police, Narinderpal Sharma, who was the head priest of a religious shrine situated in the middle of the road at Basti Jodhewal, has been booked for allegedly murdering his driver Balwinder Singh.

Balwinder Singh, who worked as a driver of Narinder Pal Sharma, sustained serious injuries as he was beaten up at a dharamshala near the Jodhewal petrol pump by the followers of the godman a fortnight ago.

Balwinder Singh succumbed to his injuries last night.

A case under Sections 323-24, 342 was registered against Chamkor Singh, Babbu Lal and Fauji.

While some followers of the godman were nabbed by the police, the godman is absconding.

Gurpreet Singh, brother of the victim, alleged that he saved his brother from the clutches of the accused while he was being beaten by the accused.

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Constable booked for fraud
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, February 6
The division No. 8 police has booked a police constable and his wife in a fraud case for allegedly cheating a resident in lieu to send him abroad.
The complainat Inderjeet Kaur, a resident of police lines alleged that constable Perveen Chopra and his wife Amarjit Kaur usurped Rs 1.80 lakh in order to send his brother abroad. Neither, the accused sent his brother abroad nor they returned the money.

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3 youths assaulted; 10 booked
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, February 6
The Sidhwan Bet police booked 10 persons for attacking three youths and inflicting grievous injury on them.

The incident occurred on the night of January 4 near Gureh village when they were going home. The injured are identified as Sukhdeep Singh, his brother Mandeep Singh and Jaswinder Singh, all of Talwandi Kalan, who were working at a mobile shop at bus stop Chowkiman village.

The police has booked Amandeep Singh of Khurd village near Malerkotla and at present residing with Jarnail Singh of Gure village and his nine accomplices on the statement of Sukhdeep Singh under Sections 324, 323, 341, 379, 148, 149, IPC.

The attackers were led by Amandeep Singh who happens to live near the shop where the victims were doing job. The attackers equipped with sharp-edged weapons. They chopped of a finger of Sukhdeep Singh and inflicted two stab wounds on his thigh. Jaswinder Sing had severe head injuries and a hand fractures while Mandeep Singh had head injuries. The victims had bruises oll over the body.

Investigation by Ludhiana Tribune revealed that Amandeep Singh had suspected of Mandeep Singh having relations with his cousin Kulwant Kaur (name changed) a student of Sidhwan Khurd College. On the other hand, Mandeep Singh says that for the past 15 days, she had been in her telephonic contact but he discontinued attending her calls.

SHO Sidhwan Bet Balvir Singh said they had booked the accused as per information received and other sections of the IPC would be added after they received the MLR of the victims. The victims are admitted to the civil hospital in a critical state.

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Gang of cheats busted, 1 arrested
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, February 6
The Sidhwan Bet police has busted a gang of cheats and arrested a woman member of the gang.

The arrested member was identified as Reshma, alias Rano (40), of Jammu Basti near Jalalabad in Ferozepur district.

The police has booked her and Preetam Kaur of Salimpur Tibba village near Sidhwan Bet and Satnam Singh under Sections 420 and 34 of the IPC.

SHO Sidhwan Bet Balvir Singh said the gang, as presently identified, was of eight members.

The gang’s modus operandi was to procure artificial ornaments made of either copper or brass and give them a gold coating.

The gang members first visited small jewellery shops and offered to mortgage their fake jewellery at half the market price to help their “ailing husband”. While a woman remained inside the shop, the rest of the gang members waited outside for her.

He said yesterday she was identified by Kewal Krishan Verma in whose shop this was her third visit, who caught her with the help of fellow shopkeepers and handed her to the police.

She had gone to his shop about 15 days ago and mortgaged her gold. About a week ago, she came and sold the mortgaged gold to him and defrauded him of Rs 28,500. Similarly, she reportedly forged Khaira Jewellers of Rs 27,000 about 20 days ago.

The SHO said that during investigation, she confessed her crime and identified herself as Preetam Kaur. He said when the other gang members suspected something wrong, they escaped from the crime scene, leaving her alone.

The police also recovered fake gold ornaments from her procession that she bought for sale.

The accused Reshma was produced before Judge Ranjeev Kumar at Jagraon Courts today, who sent her to one-day police remand.

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Two nabbed for snatching mobile sets
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, February 6
The CIA- II police has nabbed two mobile phone snatchers and claimed to have solved the complaints of residents of Shimlapuri.

The two are identified as Amandeep Kumar alias Binda and Satish Kumar, both residents of Daba Lohara.

The police has recovered 13 mobile sets and a motorcycle from the accused.

The police received a tip-off that the accused were heading from Lohara to commit another snatching in the Shimlapuri area.

The police laid a trap and nabbed that accused.

Dilpreet Singh, in charge CIA- II, said these snatchers were operating in the Shimlapuri area for the past few months and had been involved in many cases of mobile snatching.

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Athletics meet at colleges kicks off
Anil Datt

Ludhiana, February 6
Rajpreet Kaur, a student of BA I, gave outstanding performance to bag four titles on the first day of the 48th Annual Athletics Meet of Khalsa College for Women, Civil Lines, being held here today. Maninder of BA III and Harinder Kaur, a student of B.A I, clinched two titles each.

Rajpreet Kaur romped home victorious in the 100m sprint and then went on to win top honours in the 400m and 800m races and long jump event. She also finished third in the shot put event.

Team of BA III bagged the shield in the inter-class march past as well as the title in the tug-of-war match.

A large number of students are taking part in the two-day event during which competition in the regular and fun games are being conducted.

First day's results: 100m race- Rajpreet Kaur 1, Manjinder Kaur 2 and Ramanpreet Kaur 3; 400m race- Rajpreet Kaur 1, Ramanpreet Kaur 2 and Rajni Bala 3; 800m race- Rajpreet Kaur 1, Rajni Bala 2 and Ramanpreet Kaur 3.

Long jump- Rajpreet Kaur 1, Manjinder Kaur 2 and Sudha 3;

Javelin throw- Maninder Kaur 1, Gagandeep Kaur 2 and Manpreet Kaur 3;

Shot put- Maninder Kaur 1, Manpreet Kaur 2 and Rajpreet Kaur 3.

Sack race- Harinder Kaur 1, Ramanpreet Kaur 2 and Ritu 3;

Three-legged race: Harinder and Jagdeep 1, Deepnashu and Sunita 2, Amrinder and Nayna 3;

Spoon and potato race- Narinder 1, Sumandeep 2 and Shelja 3;

Rope skipping race- Resham 1 and Neha 2.

Inter-class march past: B.A III 1 and B.C.A 2;

Inter-class tug-of-war: B.A. III 1 and B.Sc II 2.

Guru Nanak Girls College

The two-day annual athletics meet of Guru Nanak Girls College, Model Town, Ludhiana, began today. Jasvinder Singh Bhandari, District Sports Officer (DSO), Ludhiana, inaugurated the meet in which students of all streams are taking part.

The chief guest exhorted the girls to carve a niche for themselves in the field of sports as they have done in other fields. He released colourful balloons to mark the opening of the meet.

Gurbir Singh, president of the Guru Nanak Education Trust, and Dr Charanjit Kaur Mahal, principal of the college, along with faculty members welcomed the chief guest.

Results

800m race: Gurjit Kaur 1, Priya 2 and Amandeep Kaur 3.

Javelin throw: Gurjit Kaur 1, Mandeep Kaur 2 and Amandeep Kaur 3.

1500m race: Gurpreet Kaur 1, Priya 2 and Sandeep Kaur 3.

Shot put: Baljinder Kaur 1, Gurpreet Kaur 2 and Harminder 3. High jump: Ramandeep 1, Ravneet Kaur 2 and Amandeep Kaur 3.

200m race: Rajbir Kaur 1, Nainay Bala 2 and Priya 3.

Discus throw: Gurpreet Kaur (BA II) 1, Gurpreet Kaur (BA I) 2 and Manjit Kaur 3.

Long jump: Ramandeep Kaur 1, Harminder Kaur 2 and Manjit Kaur 3.

Three-legged race: Mandeep and Manjti Kaur 1, Hamit and Suman 2, Davinder Kaur and Kalyani 3.

400m race: Raman 1, Priya 2 and Gurjit Kaur 3.

Skipping race: Swarjit Kaur 1, Harpreet Kaur 2 and Pushpinder 3.

4x400 relay race: BA II- 1, MA II-2 and BA I- 3.

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City team to play in Surat 
Our Sports Reporter

Ludhiana, January 6
The Gully 1 team, which emerged champions in the four-team T10 Gully Cricket Tournament organised at Guru Nanak Engineering College on January 28, will take part in the semifinals to be held at Surat on February 12, 13 and 15.

Team’s coach Charanjit Bhangu said Gagandeep Dhand, a Class XII student, will lead the team while Varun Chitkara, a BCA student, College of Technical Education, Baddowal, will be his deputy.

Other members of the team are Bharat Malhotra, Shakun Jindal, Yogesh Sharma, Chinton Sehgal, Sanjay Kumar, Sunny Kumar, Manpreet Singh, Varun Verma, Karan Puri, Jayant Batra and Rahul. Arjun Puri of the Gully II team, who was declared the Chamkta Sitara for his outstanding performance in the tournament on January 28, has also been invited by the organisers to be present at Surat.

Teams which came out triumphant at other centres are Pune, Surat, Nashik, Jalandhar, Kanpur, Thane and Lucknow besides Ludhiana will slug it out at Surat, Bhangu added.

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Himanshu wins tricycle race
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, February 6
Students of pre-nursery, nursery and KG classes, along with those from primary wing, competed in various fun games during the one-day annual athletics meet of Sanatan Vidya Mandir Senior Secondary School, Civil Lines, here today.

Results: Pre-nursery- Tricycle race- Himanshu 1, Paras 2 and Tamanna 3. Balloon race- Paras 1, Tamanna 2 and Abhey 3.

Nursery: Flower race- Simranjit Singh 1, Ishu 2 and Arman 3.

Frog race- Simranjit Singh 1, Archie 2 and Tisha 3.

KG- Snake race- Aryan 1, Smriti 2 and Imanjot 3.

Mask race- Kevalya 1, Sidhant 2 and Ansh 2.

Class I- Bananna race- Aneesh 1, Aditya 2 and Jatin 3.

Animal race- Shubham 1, Naman 2 and Jyoti 3.

Class II- Backward walking- Trishna 1, Prabhjot 2 and Anjali 3

Mobile race- Rohit 1, Dixit 2 and Ankit 3.

Class III- Pick the maximun objects: Sumit 1, Pawan 2 and Lalit 3

One-leg race: Ansh 1, Vishal 2 and Sandeep 3.

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