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MC Budget Meeting
Who would lead Congress?
Jyotika Sood
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, February 27
The fund-crunched MC, which is already burdened with the Rs 40-crore loan handed over by Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal during sangat darshan, would be taking another loan worth Rs 44-crore from HUDCO, according to the proposed budget.

The decision on this loan would be taken during the municipal house which would meet here tomorrow to finalise the budget for 2009-2010.

The budget is likely to be interesting as the leader of the opposition, Congress councillor Prem Mittal, has joined the SAD and the Congress has not yet decided its leader in the house. Though many names are doing the rounds, who would probably lead the party tomorrow, nothing has been decided yet.

A comparison of the budget for 2008-09 and 2009-10 shows that the civic body has not performed well as far as meeting its target is concerned. However, with March still left, officials are hopeful of meeting the target.

According to comparative statements, the MC expected Rs 51 crore as house tax for 2008-09 while the revenue for the coming financial year has been worked out at Rs 75 crore. Similarly, a Rs 2-crore increase has been shown in the octroi on electricity while the additional excise duty has been increased from Rs 5 crore to Rs 75 crore.

Councillors said: “When it comes to expenditure, the civic body meets its targets, but when it comes to revenue, it generally fails.”

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Fire Fighting Arrangements — IV
Police headquarters unsafe
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, February 27
Hundreds of employees and people visiting the police headquarters at the mini secretariat every day are at risk if a major fire breaks out as there is no fire-fighting system in place.

There are no sand bags and no emergency exit from the basement in the building which houses clerical staff.

In fact, a majority of police stations all over the city do not have any fire-fighting equipment. This is when a large number of police stations store confiscated liquor and other inflammable material.

The corridors leading to the offices of the SSP, SP (City) and other officers on the ground floor are narrow and the basement continues to function with employees, despite clear government instructions on the matter concerning human safety.

The police headquarters houses important case files which could be destroyed in case of a fire. A senior superintendent, requesting anonymity, said: “We would incur great loss in case of a fire. Our bosses should walk down to our offices once in a while to acquaint themselves with the ground realities.”

Amar Singh, a resident of BRS Nagar, said: “I am amazed at the careless attitude of the authorities towards a government office housing senior officers. The fire department should first focus on government offices to set an example for a common man to adhere to rules.”

Tejinder Singh, a visitor at the SSP’s office said a casual visit to the office by the fire authorities was not sufficient. The department should initiate action against the police or administration authorities to set an example for others to follow. Strict action against a defaulting government branch would be deter others.

A senior officer said: “He was aware of the problem. I assure you that the matter would be looked into urgently.”

Each building is required to abide by the rules laid down in the National Building Code of India (NBCI).

The fire department has the responsibility of ensuring that fire safety norms laid down in the NBCI are followed. The code contains detailed provisions on fire prevention and life safety. Common buildings, new category of hotels, heritage structures and archaeological monuments have also been included in the new code.

The Bureau of Indian Standards has developed a fire protection expert system (FPES), a software based on the NBCI - Part IV, for facilitating human decisions on fire protection in buildings.

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Fire breaks out in building
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, February 27
A fire broke out on the second floor of a building at Mahavir Colony in Sunder Nagar at around 3.45 pm here today. Three fire engines were pressed into service to control the fire. Within a few minutes, the fire spread to the third floor and people in nearby buildings were asked to vacate the buildings.

A woman staying in a house adjacent to the building said: “We had just returned from a wedding and I saw a fire in the last room of the building. The fire was spreading fast and there was panic.”

The building houses a factory where T-shirts are made.

She said the factory owners were not in the building at the time of the incident as they had gone for a wedding and were informed about the fire later.

Another eyewitness said the building had a kerosene boiler and they feared that if the tanker caught fire, it might lead to a major tragedy.

Some workers of the unit said: “By God’s grace all of us vacated the building as soon as a boy came running from the second floor to warn us.” They said they were not aware of the reason behind the fire.

It’s the second incident of fire in the city this week.

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Day of Protests
College teachers strike work
Tribune Reporters

Ludhiana, February 27
College and university teachers organised a strike and held a dharna here today in protest against the non-implementation of the UGC pay scales notification issued by the Ministry of Human Resources Development on December 31.

The call for strike was given by the Punjab Federation of University and College Teachers Organisation (PFUCTO).

The president of the Government College Teachers Association (GCTA), Punjab, Prof Jaipal Singh, said teachers all over the state wanted Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal to honour his commitment made to the 11-member delegation of the PFUCTO on February 13. He said the CM had assured the teachers that the notification would be cleared at the Cabinet meeting on February 20.

“But the state government seems to have backtracked over the issue. The credibility of the CM is at stake at a time when the Lok Sabha poll are round the corner. The government did not even wait for a day when it came to implement the Sixth Pay Panel recommendations for IAS/IPS officers. The worst affected are teachers,” he said.

Teachers of Punjab Agricultural University (PAU) and Guru Angad Dev Veterinary and Animal Sciences University (GADVASU) threatened to intensify their agitation if the government failed to implement the notification issued by the UGC.

A large number of faculty members today assembled in front of Thapar Hall at the PAU, following which all academic activity remained suspended throughout the day.

Dr GS Saroa, president of Punjab Agricultural University Teachers Association (PAUTA), said the state government had forced teachers to resort to the path of agitation and the participation of one and all was a befitting reply to the dilatory tactics of the government. “There is urgent need for us to get the revised pay scales before the election code of conduct comes into force anytime,” he said.

On March 2, rallies would be held at Amritsar, Jalandhar, Bathinda, Ludhiana, Patiala and Chandigarh and from March 3, a 72-hour education bandh in institutions of higher education would be observed.

Lawyers too boycott work

Showing resentment against the clash of the police and lawyers at the Madras High Court, lawyers observed a strike here today.

They watched the 20-20 cricket match between India and New Zealand on TV at the Bar room.

The chairman of the Bar Council of Punjab and Haryana, Balwinder Goel, said the Madras police beat up lawyers like they were hardened criminals. The officials who were negligent in their performing duty, which resulted in the untoward incident, must be taught a lesson.

The District Bar Association president, Parupkar Singh Ghumman, and other office-bearers termed the action of the police as barbaric.

They said such acts would not be tolerated by the legal fraternity. The police had no right to initiate or take such a harsh action, they said, wondering that if the police could do this at a place like the High Court, what would it do with the general public.

They appreciated the action taken by the Supreme Court in this regard.

Meanwhile, it was a tough day for litigants whose cases were adjourned without any hearing in the absence of their lawyers.

Farmers raise voice for PAU

To save the PAU and make it cater to the needs of farmers, hundreds of farmers demonstrated in front of the PAU on the call of the Jamhuri Kisan Sabha Punjab here today.

The Ferozepur road was blocked by farmers who raised slogans against the central and state governments.

Farmers from various districts gathered under the leadership of the Kirtan Singh Ghungrana (Ludhiana), Manohar Singh Gill (Jalandhar), Baldev Singh Saidpur (Amritsar), Dharam Singh Thali (Ropar) and Malkiat Singh Wajjidke (Barnala).

The state president of the sabha, Dr Satnam Singh Ajnala, and joint secretary Raghbir Singh Batala, while addressing the farmers, said the Centre and Punjab governments had failed to help the PAU.

They said it was not being given funds for research and other work due to which research was being affected. Farmers were not getting quality seeds. Due to shortage of funds, many posts of research scientist were lying vacant.

Kisan leaders said at least Rs 200 crore should be granted to the PAU for research on animals of good breed; fill posts and give pension.

State vice-presidents Mohinder Singh Gill and Rattan Singh Randhawa said during the tenure of the late CM Beant Singh, sugarcane research farm at Jalandhar was sold and shifted to Ladhowal, where research could not be started due to poor soil condition.

And now, the Deputy CM, Sukhbir Singh Badal, had transferred 28 acres of prime land of the regional research station at Bathinda to the Cricket Control Board. The government was also trying to sell the rice research station at Kapurthala to private companies.

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With no porters, passengers left to fend for themselves
Kuldip Bhatia

Ludhiana, February 27
For the past several months, there has been acute shortage of licensed porters at the railway station here. With just a fraction of the required porters available, travellers are forced to carry their luggage themselves.

Some passengers carrying heavy pieces of luggage have to make several rounds between the platform and the main gate of the station to put it together.

There have been instances when passengers have missed trains as they were not able to locate their coaches or board the train in time.

A couple of months ago, the railway station had about 160 licensed porters, but after the railways offered regular job of gang men to porters, a majority of them opted for it. With this, the number of licensed porters has been reduced to around 25. Not more than a dozen porters are available at the station at any given time.

According to railway officials, more than 140 mail, express and passenger trains pass through Ludhiana and around 30,000 persons undertake railway journey every day.

The railway authorities at Ferozepur had initiated the process of recruiting 60 porters for Ludhiana, as also for other major railway stations in the division around the middle of last year, however, the process could not be completed. After making the applicants wait for long, the railway ministry is said to have scrapped the recruitment.

According to sources, the railway authorities had stalled the process of enlistment of porters as many of those recruited as railway gang men, are said to have been keen on quitting and have their licenses and go back to being porters. Even though the porters do not have a secure job, they make more money than the salary of a gang man.Senior divisional commercial manager of northern railway Dharmendra Kumar said the new policy for recruitment of porters had been received from the headquarters. “We shall invite fresh applications soon and preference would be given to local candidates. At the same time, porters who were recruited as gang men would be given the option to retain their job or join back as porters if they so desired,” he said.

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I am a Punjabi at heart, says Yash Chopra
Charu Chhibber
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, February 27
His talent on screen makes viewers glued to their seats. He is a man who gave a new dimension to Indian cinema and being a veteran in Bollywood loves to experiment with his work even today. Yash Chopra does not need an introduction. His films talk for him. The Tribune caught up with the producer-director today, who was in city to attend a wedding.

Talking about the biggest achievement of the Indian cinema, which came in the form of eight Oscars for Slumdog Millionaire, Chopra said, "The film has made all of us proud and has proved to the world the talent of the Indian cinema. The film is different in every way, be it the screenplay or editing, direction or performances.

The achievement shows the movie is really special."

On the world opinion about the claims of India for portraying Slumdog Millionaire as Indian film and not a British one, Chopra remarked, "Everything you see on screen is Indian. Technicians are Indian as well. So it's an Indian movie."

However, he added that if an Indian director had tried his hand on the assignment the outcome would not have been what it was.

Congratulating the team of Slumdog Millionaire, he said AR Rehman was a part of Bollywood and his venture had made everyone proud.

His songs in the film were simply mind-blowing. Similarly, was Gulzar.

Disclosing details of his upcoming projects, he said there were five new projects of the banner slated for this year, out of which two were ready while three were in the pipeline and "New York" being one of them. He added that out of five, he was directing only one.

Well known for promoting Punjabi culture around the world through his films, Chopra said, "I am proud of the fact that I am a Punjabi and I know the culture very well. It is in my blood.

I can portray the culture beautifully without having to study it, so I make sure to put in a Punjabi character in every film.

But at the same time, I am careful that whatever I portray in my films is done correctly."

Chopra said he made films with heart and made no compromises when it came to his films.

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City Concerns

Regular religious processions, mainly shobha yatras, on city roads continue to inconvenience travellers. Traffic on Jagraon Bridge, Ferozepur road, Ghumar Mandi and a majority of old city roads continues to be bad and there seems no respite in sight.

As if the enormous traffic on city roads was not enough to cause jams, shobha yatras, with deafening music and a sea of humanity, break the regular flow of traffic. Residents are peeved and feel there is no forum to address their woes.

Do you have a workable advice for the city administration to help hundreds of commuters from unwanted delay? Responses, in not more than 200 words, can be emailed to ludhianaconcerns@tribunemail.com or sent to our city office at Bhadaur House, Ludhiana.

— City Editor

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COMMUNITY
 

Top cops clueless about Rajiv Raja’s escape
Even DG (Prisons) not aware that he was shifted to four jails
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, February 27
The sensational escape of notorious criminal Rajiv Raja has left many question unanswered. He is, probably, the only criminal to have been shifted to four jails since he was arrested in 2006.

Raja, who was charged for murder of Rakesh Sachdeva, owner Raghav Jewellers, and Darshan Singh and his wife of Punjab Jewellers, has left the top cops in a tizzy since the day he escaped from police custody while he was being brought to the city from Bathinda Jail for hearing a case on January 30.

The manner in which he escaped also indicates the fact that the criminal was constantly in touch with his accomplice, who organised everything for freeing him while he was being taken for hearing to the city.

Rajiv Raja was first housed in Nabha Jail, sighting security reasons, later he was shifted to Sangrur and after few months he was shifted to Ferozpur and finally to Bathinda.

Sources in the police revealed that former Ludhiana SSP, RK Jaswal, even objected to the sudden shifting of the criminals in so many jails.

The question that is staring in the face of the police at present is how Raja managed to reach Bathinda jail after all.

The criminal, who is basically wanted in a sensational double murder case that took place in Ludhiana in 2006, was sent to Sangrur jail after arrest.

Raja was being brought from Bathinda and the party was supposed to change bus at Barnala. It has been learnt that a white car, in which three persons were seated, was already parked at the bus stand. As soon as Raja alighted from the bus, the police party was attacked and Raja fled in the car along with his accomplices.

Even police officials admitted that he was a hardened criminal, nabbing him was not an easy task and his escape was very unfortunate.

The case had earned the city police accolades when it was adjudged one of the best three cases solved in 2006.

The other two were the Reema Jain murder case and the bomb blast in Jalandhar. A cash reward of Rs 1 lakh was also given to members of the investigation team.

Mohmmad Ihzar Alam, DG (Prisons), said he was not aware of Rajiv Raja’s shifting to so many jails.

If he didn’t order his shifting then, the big question is, on whose orders was he shifted?

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Infighting within SAD a cause of concern
KS Chawla

Ludhiana, February 27
SAD leaders might be happy over the induction of Gurcharan Singh Ghalib, a veteran Congress leader, into its fold and the announcement of his candidature as the party’s nominee for the Ludhiana Lok Sabha seat, but the intense infighting within the rank and file in the city should be a cause of concern for the high command.

The infighting within local Akali leaders is so acute that they even failed to find a suitable candidate from among themselves as the party nominees for the city’s Lok Sabha seat. As a result of this the senior leaders had to engineer defection from the Congress.

The local Akali leadership is divided into different groups. Ego of each group leader is so high that they are not ready to compromise. This infighting is visible among lower ranks. Most of them can even be found fighting for the sake of finding a suitable chair at official functions where the Chief Minister is present or the party president is addressing the gathering. A few of these leaders are neither very ‘old’ nor matured enough as most of them could be found quarrelling over trifle issues.

The city unit of the party used to boast of seasoned leaders likes late Jathedar Surjan Singh Thekedar and Jathedar Jagdev Singh Talwandi. The latter is now old and has gone into the background with the arrival of the new leadership and the lukewarm response from the party stalwarts…. who are nowadays running the show.

The local Akali leadership was earlier divided into groups known as the Jagdish Singh-Mann Singh, Garcha- Sharanjit Singh Dhillon and Hira Singh Gabria- Amarjit Singh Bhatia and Avtar Singh Makkar groups. The latter was known as ‘urban Sikhs group.’ But with the induction of Avtar Singh Makkar as the SGPC president, the equations have changed. Now Sharanjit Singh Dhillon, Harish Rai Dhandha, Chief Parliamentary Secretary, and Avtar Singh Makkar have formed a new group while the Gabria group has Hakam Singh Gyaspura, Mayor, Ludhiana Municipal Corporation, and Amarjeet Singh Bhatia, SAD vice-president.

Another group that has emerged in the recent past is known as the Satinder Singh Bains group. Bains is a municipal councillor and was a strong contender for the mayor’s post. But, the Gabria group succeeded in gaining control over the corporation’s seat. The Garcha group, which was once very close to the Badals, is feeling isolated and its proximity to them will be known at the time of the allotment of the liquor vends next month.

Mahesh Inder Singh Grewal, Akali Dal general secretary, is close to both senior and junior Badals. He is always sent to attend all-important NDA meetings and that with the Chief Election Commissioner. Grewal is trying to keep himself aloof from the groups within the Ludhiana town. There is another group known as ‘ Bhaoo Bhagwan Singh’ group whose residence is the Chief Minister’s abode. It claims itself to be a ‘sleeping’ group of the party and keeps the Chief Minister informed about all local politics. The Chief Minister stays at his residence whenever he has to stay in the city for a night.

Though, Badals are aware of the division among the party leaders, they haven’t taken any steps for curb it.

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APJ wins inter-college contest
Our Correspondent

Mandi Gobindgarh, February 27
Desh Bhagat Institute of Management and Computer Sciences organised an inter-college programme, “Techminds -09”, yesterday.

About 400 students from 21 institutes of North India participated in various contests, like business quiz, IT quiz, paper presentation and essay writing. Parveen Bakhashi, vice-president, IDS Infotech Ltd presided over the valedictory function and gave away the prizes.

The July-December issue of the bi-annual “Desh Bhagat Newsletter” was also released.

Results of various events:

Overall trophy-APJ Institute, Jalandhar.

Test Your C Skills (PG category): Vishal Luhia, APJ Institute, Jalandhar, 1 and Dinesh Kumar, APJ Institute, Jalandhar, 2.

Test Your Skills (UG category): Jasleen Kaur, Guru Harkrishan College, Patiala, 1 and Jaspreet Kaur, Lovely Institute of Management, Jalandhar, 2.

Debugging: APJ Institute, Jalandhar, 1 and AS College, Khanna, 2. Business Quiz: JMIT, Raudar, 1 and GNIMT, Ludhiana, 2.

Essay Writing: Niharika Kala, APJ Institute, Jalandhar, 1 and Mansi Arora, Lovely Institute, Jalandhar, 2. Paper Presentation (Management): Jasprit Kaur, GNDU Regional Campus, Jalandhar, 1 and Amit Sharma, DMIT Doraha, 2.

Sell it: GNIMT, Ludhiana, 1 and GNDU Regional Campus, Jalandhar, 2.

Paper Presentation (IT): Neha Choudhary, Lovely Institute, 1 and Rukmani, GNDU Regional Campus, Jalandhar, 2.

IT Quiz: DAV College, Abohar, 1 and GNDU Regional Campus, Jalandhar, 2.

Application Development: DAV College, Abohar, 1 and APJ College, Jalandhar, 2.

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Enact stringent law to check video piracy: Front
KS Chawla

Ludhiana, February 27
Punjabi music and film industry has received a major setback thanks to the large-scale piracy of the same and lack of strong laws for checking piracy. The successive government’s in Punjab has failed to put an end to the piracy and the singers, film directors and actors and producers of the films have formed an organisation known as “Punjabi Front”. The front has set up a 13-member action committee for protecting the music and film industry.

The Punjabi front has also decided to put up its candidates in the ensuing Lok Sabha elections to force the state government to enact a stringent law for stopping piracy.

The front is likely to announce its candidates for the Lok Sabha elections within a week or so say Iqbal Dhillon, a spokesman of the front. There are 300 to 4,000 singers in Punjab and they can affect 15 lakh votes of the parties in the state.

The pirated CD’s are available in the markets in the towns of Punjab in abundance and their annual sales run into several crores. The cable operators show porno films and pirated CD’s of the films are made by them alleged Dhillon with the result that the film industry has also suffered huge financial losses.

Enquiries made by Ludhiana Tribune reveled that CDs of all types of films and songs are available in plenty all over the state and in small villages. The availability of the latest technological gadgets has made the preparation of the CDs easy.

Following a threat from the folk artists and film producers that they would not perform on the stages of the political parties in the Lok Sabha elections, Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal ordered the district police chiefs to conduct raids and seize the pirated CD’s. The police parties raided the CD shops at Ludhiana, Mohali, Bathinda, Hoshiarpur, Budhladha, Amritsar and Muktsar last week and recovered more than 10 lakh pirated CD’s. In Ludhiana alone more than two lakh CDs were seized during the raids according to Sukhchain Singh Gill, SSP. Ludhiana is a big centre of pirated CDs. The police also arrested four persons under the copyright act in Ludhiana.

Harpreet Singh Sandhu, former Additional Advocate-General, Punjab, who has been pleading the case of Punjabi Front artistes says that piracy of audio, video films in Punjabi and other films and albums of the singers has crossed all limits in Punjab. The police authorities have been taking action under the Copyright Act, which is very stringent.

The Punjabi Front has demanded that Goonda Act should be implemented in Punjab for preventing the sale of pirated CDs.

Harpreet Sandhu says that the Tamil Nadu government enacted the Goonda Act in 2004 and took action against those indulging in piracy business. In Punjab, too, there was the need for the enactment of the Goonda Act to put an end to this clandestine business.

Dhillon alleged that the Punjab government is losing revenue worth Rs 400 crore due to the sale of pirated CDs as they are not paying VAT besides; there is a huge loss of IT too.

There is no Goonda Act in Punjab under the Punjab Police Act and a legal order would have to be issued for the same. The Punjabi Front has increased pressure on the state government in the view of the impending Lok Sabha elections. During the Amarinder Singh’s government, too, the singers and other artistes had demanded the enactment of the Goonda Act.

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Engg Expo-2009 begins
New industrial policy soon: Bir
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, February 27
To boost the industry in Punjab and to generate more employment opportunities, the government would soon pass a new industrial policy, which would enable new entrepreneurs and the industry to take advantage of a single window clearance mechanism.

There would also be a deemed approval clause, which would help budding entrepreneurs to carry on the business with ease in case necessary government proposal could not be administered within the stipulated time fame. This was stated by JS Bir, Divisional Commissioner, Patiala range, here today.

Bir was addressing a function while inaugurating “Engineering Expo-2009,” which has been organised by Infomedia 18 Ltd at the Government College for Women, Ludhiana. Sudhanva Jategaonkar, senior General Manager, Infomedia 18 Limited, Vikas Garg, Deputy Commissioner, Ludhiana, and SC Ralhan, regional chairman, EEPC India, and Vishav Bandhu, General Manager, District Industries Centre, Ludhiana, were also present on the occasion.

Bir said: "Engineering Expo is a platform for big and small engineering companies to come together and showcase their innovation, explore new technologies and exchange ideas and meet business interests. I hope more such exhibitions take place in Ludhiana as the city is growing rapidly." He further said the expo would showcase the best in engineering innovations and technology to serve as a platform for the industry for increasing their business to get the competitive edge. The expo will have pavilions dedicated to machine tools, hydraulic and pneumatic systems, plastics, packaging, electrical and electronics, pumps and valves, automation systems, material handling equipment, instrumentation and control equipment, chemical plant and machinery, pharmaceutical machinery, automotive components, IT products and services and general engineering.

Talking to Ludhiana Tribune, Jategaonkar said: "Taking forward the success from the last expo we expect this to be even bigger in terms of exhibitors, revenue generated and the number of visitors. Ludhiana is a fast growing industrial hub of the country and home to major industries."

He added, "Infomedia 18 directs its efforts towards advancing the skills of engineering and technology, encouraging development for managing organisations with a high engineering usage and promoting technology transitioning.Engineering expo is an annual event held in Pune, Ahmedabad and Ludhiana to meet the business requirements of the engineering and technology sector. After receiving a good response from these cities, the expo this year has expanded its reach to Chennai and Indore, which are industrial hubs, and home to numerous SMEs."

He said the expo, which would hosts more than 150 exhibitors would witness over 15,000 visitors from all over the country during the four-day expo at Ludhiana. The event will be open to business visitors from 10 am to 3 pm and general visitors from 3pm to 7.30 pm.

He said the expo serves as a platform for Indian and foreign companies for exhibiting their products and services, interact with potential buyers and sellers, generate new incremental business and forge new partnerships.

Showcasing cutting-edge technologies, this year's edition will also unveil the latest in products, machinery and equipment from manufacturing and related industries. Leading engineering companies such as Tech Aids, Mitutoyo South Asia Pvt Ltd, Faro Business Technologies India Pvt Ltd, AV Engineers, Blum Novotest GmbH, Bhardwaj Cranes and Elevators, Emtex Machinery Pvt. 

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New cardiac care techniques discussed at CME
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, February 27
The National Integrated Medical Association (NIMA) organised a seminar on cardiac diseases and diabetes under the continuing medical education project here today. At least 100 NIMA doctors and local medical professionals attended the CME.

RP Singh, senior interventional cardiologist and Ramanbir Singh, consultant endocrinologist, SPS Apollo Hospital, Ludhiana, were the guest speakers. Jasbir Singh Makar, a cardiologist from the USA, was invited to share his views on latest techniques of cardiac care in advanced countries.

He said it was most important to rule out cardiac complications in each and every case of chest pain. "Complete and careful examination, along with thorough history of the patient, is very important," he added.

Family physicians should either have ECG facility or at least be competent enough to interpret an ECG graph done at some other centre. Early detection of infarction or acute coronary event can save many lives, if treated well within the window period by interventions like PTCA or by conventional thrombolytic therapy, he added.

According to him, a tablet of Aspirin given during heart attack was the cheapest, effective and lifesaving thrombolytic step. One should always be ready to discuss, any doubts with one's colleagues since competency flowed down from the regular discussion and introspection.

Ramanbir Singh, while speaking on diabetes, said the regular use of medicines along with diet and exercise, was sure to insure longevity in the type-2 diabetes patients. He discussed various new molecules introduced for diabetic patients, in the form of oral pills and insulin.

Makar, while sharing his views on cardiac care in the USA, said the availability of newer techniques like nuclear stress testing cardiac catheterization, single or multiple stenting, radio frequency ablation and newer pace makers had revolutionised the treatment modalities of cardiac problems.

"In high risk patients automatic implantable cardioverter defibrillator is used for preventing sudden death. Robots are being used to repair damaged heart valves with excellent results", the expert commented.

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Auction of fancy nos. gets Rs 40 lakh
Shivani Bhakoo

Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, February 27
There seems to be little impact of global meltdown on city residents. During the auction of fancy numbers by the district transport department at the Circuit House here today, a large number of people gathered to get numbers for their vehicles. Until the filing of the report, the department was able to generate a whopping Rs 40 lakh through the auction of special numbers.

The auction was held under the supervision of district transport officer Chander Gaind. The number PB 10 CK was sold for Rs 3.10 lakh while PB 10 CL went for Rs 3 lakh. Number 0007 in CK series got the maximum bid of Rs 1.16 lakh while in the CL series, the number went for Rs 1.6 lakh.

A resident of BRS Nagar, Asim Goel (name changed on request), who got the number of his choice said: “There is recession, but for passionate people like me, money hardly matters.

One can afford to spend a few thousand or lakh rupees to get special numbers for the vehicle.

I am happy that I got the number of my choice today as in the previous auction, the same number went for a higher price,” he said.

The DTO said barring one or two auctions, the district generally had generated maximum revenue for the state exchequer through the auction of special numbers.

“As far as spending money on special numbers is concerned, there is no meltdown.

Several crores have been generated by the district transport department through the auctions of these numbers in the past year,” he added.

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Fee Hike
Parents MGM standoff turns ugly
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, February 27
The dispute between the parents of the students and management of MGM Public school, Dugri, took an ugly turn today when the parents allegedly threw stones and broke window panes of the school.

The parents had been protesting for the last three days against the hike in the tuition fee, and demanding the withdrawal of the hike.

According to Gajjan Singh, president of the school, there would be an agreement between the management and the parents, in which the management had offered to reduce the fee by Rs 500 from the enhancement of Rs 1,000 per annum. But the parents had insisted that the management should give in writing that there would be no hike in fee for the next ten years. The management had refused to accede to the demand and there had been a deadlock, said Gajjan Singh. He further alleged that the parents then had resorted to stone throwing and deflated the vehicles of the school.

The parents later staged dharna and blocked the traffic. The police was summoned to control the situation.

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Intra-college contests at Doraha college
Our Correspondent

Doraha, February 27
The Doraha College of Education organised a series of intra-college competitions today. Student and teachers showcased their talent in cooking, home science and fancy dress competitions.

Students prepared desserts, shakes and soups. They were adjudged in the categories of cross-stitch, glass painting, fabric painting, mehndi, rangoli, pot painting, handwork, “bagh”, mural making and phulkari.

Principal Dr J Kiran Gera congratulated students on their performance.

The results are: mehndi-Harpreet Kaur 1, Leena 2 and Gagandeep Kaur 3; rangoli-Shifali 1 and Neha Gupta 2; glass painting-Hardeep Kaur 1, Amandeep Kaur 2 and Sandeep Kaur 3; pot painting-Kamaljit Kaur 1, Daljit Kaur 2 and Mandeep Kaur 3; fabric painting-Manjeet Kaur 1, Jatinder Kaur 2 and Sandeep Kaur 3; mural painting-Harpreet Kaur 1 and Kushwinder Kaur 2; hand-work-Usha Rani 1; phulkari-Ritu Bala 1; cross-stitch-Rajwinder Kaur 1, Murti Kaur 2 and Rajvinder Kaur 3; “bagh”-Harjeet Kaur 1; and fancy dress-Paramjit Kaur 1, Jagveer Kaur 2, Harpreet Kaur and Gurdeep Kaur 3. 

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Montessori education catches up
Sheetal Chawla

Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, February 27
Montessori education has witnessed success in Punjab. It is being replicated at various places through a tie-up with existing schools, educational institutes and entrepreneurs/individuals.

Gurmeet Singh Arora, chairman of ABC Montessori, said the ABC Montessori network at present existed in eight states and three metro cities and was rapidly developing across India, particularly in Punjab. Montessori schools are in Ludhiana, Patiala, Bathinda, Dinanagar, Phagwara, Narnaul, Jandhiala Guru, Mandi Dabwali, Rajpura and Mohali. In this session more schools would be opened in Ludhiana, Mansa, Jalandhar, Ferozepur, Amritsar, Pathankot, Fazilka, Sonepat, Karnal and Rohtak.

The primary focus of the Montessori system of education is to treat each child as a unique individual. This allows children to learn at their own pace. The goals and outcome among Montessori graduates are similar to conventional schools, but the experience of getting there is much more pleasant and stress free for children, parents and educators.

The company would be looking at the international ventures in Sri Lanka and Nepal in another two years.

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Pulse polio drive tomorrow
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, February 27
The health department will undertake a campaign to vaccinate children between 0 and five years of age against polio on March 1. In order to create awareness among the public about the pulse polio drive, civil surgeon Dr Sat Pal Sharma flagged off a rally of publicity vehicles and three-wheelers today.

He said a comprehensive campaign had been launched under which posters and banners were being put up, announcements were being made and cassettes being distributed to motivate the people to bring their children to the polio booths for getting vaccinated.

The department would set up 2,100 polio booths in the city, other towns and rural areas in the district. Mobile teams would operate to cover urban slums, brick kilns and travelling population on general bus stands, railway stations and highways.

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Extension lecture on history
Our Correspondent

Mullanpur Dakha, February 27
The postgraduate department of history today organised an extension lecture, wherein Dr Surinder Singh, professor at Punjab University, Chandigarh, presented a talk on “The state of medieval India”.

Dr Sukhmani Bal Riar, reader in the same university, also delivered a talk on “Recent writing on the national movement”. She explained how the historical writings come into existence and emphasised on the historiography of the national movement related to Punjab.

The audience comprised of teachers and students of various departments of the college.

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Seminar on climate change
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, February 27
A seminar on climate change, under a project sanctioned by Punjab State Council for Science and Technology was organised by Government Senior Secondary Model School, PAU, here.

Pardeep Kapoor, district science supervisor, was the chief guest on the occasion and Manpreet Kaur, science mistress, Government High School, Ramgarh, was a resource person. Speaker of the seminar and the project incharge, Inderpreet Kaur, talked about the climate change, the internal and external forces responsible for it, including the anthropogenic activities like burning fossil fuel etc. Emission of green house gases cause global warming, which in turn, is leading to melting of glaciers and rise of the sea level.

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MC workers raise slogans against mayor
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, February 27
Members of the Municipal Workers’ Union and the Municipal Safai Mazdoor Union staged dharna outside the corporation’s zone-A office from 12 noon to 1 pm here today.

They raised slogans against the mayor and municipal officials for its failures to meet their demands despite repeated reminders.

They were demanding regularisation of employees of the Mohalla Sanitation Committee, recruitment of more sanitary staff and promotion for sanitary inspectors.

The leaders of both organisations said they would be forced to intensify stir if their demands were not accepted at the earliest.

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CRIME
 

Husband, kin booked for dowry death
Our Correspondent

Raikot, February 27
The police yesterday booked four persons on the allegation of dowry death. Those booked were Lakhvir Singh, husband of the deceased, his mother Malkiat Kaur, father Amar Singh and sister Gagandeep Kaur.

The victim, Jaspreet Kaur, unable to sustain the burn injuries, died on the night of February 25 at DMCH, Ludhiana. She was stated to have set herself on fire over a minor altercation with her husband on February 24. But in the statement given to the JMIC of Ludhiana, Yukti Goyal, she had recorded that she accidentally got herself on fire by the bursting of stove. She had said that her in-laws had had no involvement in the incident.

Married for seven years, she is survived by two sons. In an attempt to extinguish the fire and save Lakhvir Kaur, her husband is also said to be suffered with some burn injuries and admitted to Bansal Hospital, here.

The father of the victim, Shamsher Singh, and uncles, Sarabjit Singh and Harbans Singh, also recorded their statements with the police, claiming this to be a dowry case. They claimed that the in-laws of Jaspreet Kaur had been demanding Rs 20,000 in cash. They also claimed to have audio and video recordings of her stating that Lakhvir had set her on fire, while his parents grabbed her and the sister of Lakhvir doused her with kerosene oil. But the father of the victim said there was no stove in the house and the family had never purchased kerosene oil ever. They said their daughter was not apt to cooking on stove.

About 200 villagers gathered at the Sudhar civil hospital, where a post-mortem was conducted.

They seized the state highway by putting the dead body on the Sudhar canal bridge from afternoon to evening. DSP (D)-Jagraon Satnam Singh, SHO-Raikot Gurdial Singh and SHO-Sudhar Mohan Dass tried to persuade the crowd to lift the dharna but they demanded an FIR to be registered. Later, the police booked the accused under Section 304-B and 34 of the IPC. No arrest has been made. However, SSP-Jagraon Gurpreet Singh Bhullar said a special investigation team (SIT) had been constituted.

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Dowry Case
Man trying to flee, arrested
Our Correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh, February 27
The local police has arrested a proclaimed offender who along with his parents was booked under Sections 498 B, 406 and 120 B of the IPC and 3/4/5 of the Dowry Act about three years ago.

Jatinder Kumar, who along with his parents was booked for allegedly harassing his wife, Sarita, for bringing insufficient dowry, was arrested from near the bus stand while he was trying to leave the area. The police is yet to recover dowry items from his possession.

According to an FIR registered on statement of former headmaster Randhir Kumar, his daughter Sarita was married to Jatinder Kumar about three years ago. As Sarita was working at a private school, the couple started living in a rented accommodation here. Things went smooth for some months after which Jatinder and his parents started harassing Sarita for bringing more dowry.

The local police had registered an FIR against Jatinder, his father Madan Lal and mother Mohinder Rani on May 18, 2006. Though other accused had been arrested and released on bail earlier Jatinder had been evading arrest. He was declared proclaimed offender on April 4, 2008.

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Attempt on life, three youths held
Our Correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh, February 27
Three youths have been arrested after being booked under Sections 307, 450, 324, 323, 148 and 149 of the IPC for allegedly trying to kill a youth and injuring three others with sharp-edged weapons, after they entered into a Punjab State Lottery booth near a bus stand eight days ago. Weapons used in the crime were recovered from their possession.

Kuldip Singh, alias Manak, Jagdip Singh of Lehra village and Harinder Singh of Rangian village, were arrested while they were trying to leave the area. Six of their accomplices are yet to be identified.

The accused had been booked for allegedly attempting to murder Jatinder Singh of Chhanna village and assaulting Mazid and Kadar Khan on February 19.

Jaswinder Singh of ward No. 5 had reported that the accused had come on three motorcycles with sharp-edged weapons.

While other victims were discharged after the first aid at various private hospitals, Jatinder was yet to be declared fit for giving statements by doctors at a multi-speciality hospital in Ludhiana.

The accused were also found to be involved in beating up innocent youths, including a cop’s nephew, at Pohir, Lehra and Dehlon.

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Rs 2 lakh snatched
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, February 27
Three motorcycle-borne youths allegedly snatched Rs 2 lakh from an employee at Kadwai Nagar in a broad daylight here today. Snatchers managed to disperse the crowd which tried to restrict them by firing a few shots in the air.

Narrating the incident BR Bansal, the victim, who works in Logowal Spinning Mills, said he left his office in the morning for completing a few bank formalities.

He withdrew Rs 2 lakh cash from the bank and headed towards Kidwai Nagar for purchasing some material. When he reached Kadwai Nagar, three youths who had covered their face forced him to stop his vehicle. One of the snatchers pointed a pistol on the victim and snatched the bag containing the cash.

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SPORTS

Inter-Varsity Cycling
Pbi university sweep titles
Our Sports Reporter

Ludhiana, February 27
Cyclists of Punjabi University, Patiala, proved their superiority over others to retain the titles in the men's and women's sections of the All-India Inter-University Cycling Championships that concluded at Punjab Agricultural University here today.

In men's section, Punjabi University secured 52 points to clinch the team championship, followed by Panjab University, Patiala, which accumulated 35 points to finish runners up, while MGS University, Bikaner, with 10 points, finished at third place.

In the women's section, Punjabi University riders scored 23 points to emerge champions, while Panjab University, with 20 points, secured second position. Kerala University eves, 19 points, had to content with third position.

Today, in the 4,000 m team pursuit event for men, Punjabi University gained an early lead, which they managed to hang on till finishing point. In the Olympic sprint event, again, participants from the Patiala varsity exhibited their excellence riding techniques to romp home victorious.

Final day's results:

Women: 3,000 m team pursuit: Punjabi University, Patiala, 1; Punjab University, Chandigarh, 2; and Kerala University 3.

4000m team pursuit: Punjabi University, Patiala, 1; Panjab University, Chandigarh, 2; and MGS University, Bikaner, 3.

Men: 1,000m sprint: Kaminder Singh, Punjabi University, 1; Harpinder Singh, Panjab University, 2; and Sarpreet Singh, Punjabi University, 3.

20 km point race sprint: Ramswaroop of MGS University, Bikaner, 1; Gursharan Singh, Punjabi University, 2; and Javir Singh, Punjabi University, 3.

Olympic sprint: Punjabi University 1; Panjab University 2; and Kerala University 3.

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Jithin, Elizabeth win 100m race
Our Sports Reporter

Ludhiana, February 27
The two-day 26th Combined Institutional Annual Athletic Meet began at Chritian Medical College and Hospital here today in which participants from CMCH and Christian Dental College are taking part.

The meet started with prayer by Stanley Thomas and Abraham G Thomas, Director, CMCH, declared it open. The contingent from the College of Nursing bagged the marchpast trophy.

First day's results: Boys (CMCH) 100m race- Jithin 1st; Abin 2nd and Rejul 3rd; shot put-ut- Himang 1st, Mayank 2nd and Jackson 3rd; (Girls)-100m race- Elizabeth 1st, Donageorge 2nd and Simi Samuel 3rd; Shot put -Nina Philip 1st, Shilpa 2nd and Dono George 3rd.

CDC (boys) Shot put - Gaurish 1st, Amit 2nd and Basil 3rd; 100m race- Liza George 1st, Assir 2nd and Neetu Roy 3rd.

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