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DCC gen secy found murdered
With face smashed, the body was lying along the road at Bhattian village
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 2
The general secretary of the District Congress Committee was bludgeoned to death hours before the dates of elections were announced. The politician was identified as Vicky Rana, a resident of Sandhu Nagar near Civil City. The deceased was found lying along the road at Bhattian village here this morning.

According to the police, at first the deceased could not be identified as his face was badly smashed with a stone.

On being searched, the police found a wallet and some identity cards from the pocket of the deceased from where the identity of the politician was established.

Mangal Singh, father of the deceased, said Vicky, who was a property dealer, received a call on his mobile phone in the evening and left the office on a motor cycle.

The family started searching for Vicky when he did not answer their repeated calls and even return home the whole night. It was in the morning that some villagers spotted the body of Vicky Rana and informed the police.

The police could not find the mobile and motor cycle of the deceased. Meanwhile, the police has started the investigation in the murder case and collecting the mobile details of the deceased.

His barbaric murder has sent shock waves among the Congress. He was cremated in the evening and his funeral procession was attended by a number of people.

District Congress Comittee chief Jagmohan Sharma said his death was a dent for the party in the district. He said Rana was a good worker. He had a good reputation. "We do not know who killed him. It can turn out to be a political rivalry but it is too early to say anything," said Sharma. 

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‘Tainted’ chief engineer awarded, chargesheeted
Kuldip Bhatia

Ludhiana, March 2
Strange are the ways of the present SAD-BJP government. It first rewarded a prime accused in the infamous multi-crore City Centre Scam of the Ludhiana Improvement Trust (LIT) only a fortnight ago, only to issue a charge sheet to him a week thereafter for alleged irregularities in calling tenders without seeking approval from the competent authority and then postponing the tenders in a whimsical manner.

It was only on February 18, 2009, that Manmohan Singh, Chief Engineer in the Local Bodies Department, was given a plum post in the reallocation of works of the department by Manoranjan Kalia, the minister concerned. Manmohan Singh was assigned to look after projects, works of improvement trusts, estimates and development projects under the National Urban Renewal Mission.

But just after a week from the date of these orders, the Principal Secretary, Department of Local Government, Punjab, directed that Manmohan Singh, then superintending engineer in LIT, having additional charge in the Municipal Corporation here, should be issued a charge sheet for calling tenders in the MC in October, 2004, without seeking the approval of the Finance and Contracts Committee and then postponing the tenders without stating any reason.

The enquiry report submitted by the then commissioner of the MC to the state government said no record of the tenders called by the officer on October 26, 2004, was available. The secretary remarked that the officer had brought a bad name to the MC and he should be chargesheeted.

Manmohan Singh was then superintendent engineer in LIT when the multi-crore City Centre Scam came to surface in 2006. The Vigilance Bureau investigating the scam had charged him with taking bribe from the successful bidder, changing site plan of City Centre and bending conditions of the tender to favour Today Homes (the successful bidder). After his arrest, along with other accused persons, he was placed under suspension by the government.

Kin of an independent legislator, extending support to the present SAD-BJP coalition, he not only managed to get his suspension revoked and get some of the most lucrative jobs assigned to him.

Ironically, it was the SAD-BJP combine (then in opposition) when the erstwhile Congress regime had promoted him as Chief Engineer even after his involvement in the City Centre Scam had come to light.

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Sub-Registrar offices to don new look
Kanchan Vasdev
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 2
The Sub-Registrar offices in the city are soon going to get a new look with Deputy Commissioner Vikas Garg announcing a grant for the offices that were devoid of even basic amenities.

The offices that make crores for the state exchequer every month as property-related documents were registered here were in a state of neglect.

Visitors to the office, who used to pay lakhs to the exchequer, were not even provided with facilities like drinking water and conveniences. The office compound was not even cemented and the visitors had a tough time during rain.

The three offices, including SR-East, West and Central in Transport Nagar, Ferozepore Road and Gill Road, were in a bad shape. There were not even proper shelters for the visitors to cover for rain and sun. During a rainy day, they have to wade through slush since the compound became slushy.

The residents had been complaining all these days but to no avail. There was no water coolers and even toilets. As long queues of the visitors were the order of the day everyday, they had to stand out in sun even during summers. The parking place too was in a bad shape.

The DC said these offices would be provided with all facilities so that the visitors did not have a difficult time. He said he had annonced the grant already before the model code of conduct came into effect today.

He said the improvement work on the offices would be done soon and residents would not be made to suffer. He added they did not look up to the PWD now since the official formalities would have delayed the matter.

Earlier, Divisional Commissioner, Patiala Division, JS Bir had visited the offices and expressed concern over the state of offices. He had then directed the PWD (B&R) to renovate the offices. But even after the announcement, nothing had been done.

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Improvement Trust gets show-cause notice
Information denied under RTI
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 2
State Information Commissioner PPS Gill today issued show-cause notice to the Improvement Trust for its failure to give information to a complainant since 2007 despite the fact that the complainant has submitted Rs 430 for seeking photo copy of the documents.

According to information, the complainant had bought a plot from the Improvement Trust and had requested a copy of all documents pertaining to the land purchase under the RTI. In November, 2007, the complainant saw all these documents in the LIT's office and was asked to pay Rs 430 as charges for photo copy which he immediately paid. However, till date the Improvement Trust failed to provide the documents to the complainant.

The commissioner directed the trust to return Rs 430 and provide all documents free of cost. He also issued show-cause notice to the Improvement Trust in the case.

Gill was in the city to hold an RTI court session involving 17 cases pertaining to the Ludhiana Municipal Corporation and the Ludhiana Improvement Trust. During the session which was held at Circuit House, 10 cases were disposed of while the remaining have been given the next hearing dates for Chandigarh.

Gill said, "I was forwarded 40 cases out of which 17 were from Ludhiana that involved these two departments, so I decided to call a session in the city so that people and officers could easily come." Describing the nature of cases, he said they were primarily related to delay or denial of information. While some complainants had asked for information involving the third party where the officials had been refusing.

Gill also met municipal commissioner GS Ghuman, who has the additional charge of the Improvement Trust, and asked him about what problems his departments were being faced in disclosing information. The commissioner told the information commissioner that the applications received by the departments sometimes were very vague or involved third party information.

The information commissioner suggested Ghuman to hold seminars for residents to create awareness about the RTI and educate public information officers of both departments for quick redress of complaints.

According to information, the State Information Commission has received 7,857 cases till December 31, 2008, out of which 6,653 had been disposed of. 

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Insurance co penalised Rs 35,000
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, March 2
The District Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum has ordered ICICI Lombard General Insurance Company Limited to pay a compensation of Rs 35,000 to Vijay Kumar on account of theft of his motor cycle.

President of forum JS Chawla and its member Jagjit Kaur Mander directed the insurance company to make the payment of Rs 5,000 as compensation for dragging the consumer into unnecessary litigation. The orders came on account of a complaint moved by Vijay Kumar of Railway Colony, Sham Nagar, Ludhiana.

Vijay Kumar had submitted before the forum that he had purchased a Hero Honda Motor cycle and it was insured from July 9, 2005, to July 8, 2006.

On February 13, 2006, his motor cycle was stolen. An FIR was lodged with the police station Haibowal, Ludhiana. Then he lodged a claim with the insurance company, which was rejected without any plausible reason.

Refuting the allegations, officials of the insurance company submitted that the consumer had violated the terms and conditions of the policy. He was requested several times to provide the necessary documents but he failed. Thus the company was unable to settle the claim. But the evidence on record did not match with the version of the insurance company.

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Shopkeepers protest incomplete road
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 2
Shopkeepers on Haibowal Road, near Phuriwala Gurdwara, today blocked the traffic for more than two hours after the Municipal Corporation failed to get the road constructed in the area.

The shopkeepers complained that the work on the road was started three months ago, but was stopped due to chill weather conditions and the contractor had left the construction work in the middle by adding pebbles on the road. To give it a smooth surface, mud was added but it had been more than two months, they said.

The shopkeepers alleged that neither the Municipal Commissioner nor the area councillors were listening to them despite the fact that they had been going through a lot of problems. They said when last time they complained about the road, Municipal Commissioner had come to the spot and promised to get the road constructed within 15 days, but to no avail.

The angry shopkeepers complained that the dust on the road was even affecting their health.

When councillors were asked about the matter, they revealed that hot-mix plants of the contractors were closed and the work would be started in three or four days.

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7 injured in accident
Tribune News Service

Khanna, March 2
Seven people received injuries in an accident today and three of them are reported to be serious. According to information, seven caterers were on their way from Patiala to Khanna in a canter, which collided with a truck near Gurdwara Kalgidhar in the city.

Driver of the canter failed to apply brakes at a light point and the canter hit the truck ahead of it.

The injured have been identified as Suresh Kumar, Shankar, Randhir, Brijesh, Kallu, Inderjit and Pappu Yadav.

They were rushed to the local civil hospital from where they were referred to Rajindra Hospital in Patiala.

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Woman hacked to death
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 2
The body of an unidentified woman was found from Allowal village near Ladhowal here this morning.

According to the police, the woman's neck was hacked by the assailant.

The middle aged deceased was spotted by villagers this morning who informed the police about the incident.

One of the villagers said the body was thrown in the field of Nirmal Singh during the wee hours. Meanwhile, the police has started probe into the matter. 

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Woman, child commit suicide
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 2
A woman allegedly ended her life along with her son by jumping in front of a moving train near the Model Town extension railway station here this morning.

According to an eyewitness, people warned her about the moving train and even shouted at her but she kept on walking near the track and just when the train approached near her, she jumped in front of the train and ended her life.

The identity of the deceased could not be established.

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Sixth Pay Commission Report
Teachers vent ire against govt
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 2
On the call of the Punjab Federation of University and College Teachers' Organisation (PFUCTO), protest rallies were held at six regions at Amritsar, Jalandhar, Ludhiana, Patiala, Bathinda and Chandigarh today.

University and college teachers are upset over the failure of the Punjab government; particularly Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal for failing to honour his commitment to implement the UGC pay scales' notification issued by the MHRD on December 31.

The CM had assured an 11-member delegation of the PFUCTO on December 13 that the MHRD notification shall be cleared in the cabinet meeting scheduled for February 20.

Unfortunately he had failed miserably to clear the pay scales in the cabinet meetings held on February 20, 24. Whereas resentment has brewed in the ranks of the university and college teachers over the delay in implementation of their pay scales, the state, as a whole was going to be a big looser.

The Central government has asked the states to implement the MHRD notification and get 80 per cent Central assistance towards the additional burden from 2006-2010.

It has also asked to get 40 per cent of that assistance in this financial year. This share alone comes out to be more than Rs 100 crore.

The most painful is the lame excuse put forward by the department of finance that the university and college teachers should be given new scales when the state employees would get the same.

In today's rally held at PAU campus, the teachers from the government colleges and private colleges from Ludhiana, Moga and Firozpur districts participated in large numbers.

All speakers warned the government with serious consequences if the government does not implement the MHRD notification before model code of conduct comes into force. 

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Labourers stage dharna
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 2
Rural labourers staged a massive dharna on a call given by the Joint Action Committee at Grain market here today. Labourers said due to the callous attitude of the State Government, they were on the verge of starvation.

Leaders said for the last 60 years, not even a single political leader came to the rescue of any labourer.

“Labourers are forced to commit suicides, as they are debt- ridden”, said Swaran Singh Nagoke, a speaker.

He further added labourers were living in penury and demanded for better wages with the implementation of the Rural Employment Guarantee law.

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At the Cross Roads
Books galore in Ludhiana

National Book Trust, India, has come to the city to hold Book Fair from February 28 to March 8 on the Govt. College (Boys) grounds. As many as 100 publishers from all over the country have displayed their books in a stylish manner. The book lovers have been offered a rare opportunity to get the books of their choice at reasonable prices. The city that remembers Sahir Ludhianvi, who was a great lover of books, cannot let this occasion go uncelebrated. The words printed on a page ultimately get transferred onto the screen of the reader's mind. With the passage of time, these become an inalienable part of human consciousness.

In these days of hectic activities, books are the only source of comfort and solace. They provide equipoise to the mind which is essential for viewing the panorama of life from its true perspective. Things fall into a line and the mists of doubts, fears and anxieties are dispelled. Like a lighthouse in troubled waters of the sea, the books guide the seekers of knowledge, understanding and wisdom to the real path of life. To the people, too much obsessed with material advancement, books may appear to be the refuge for the escapists from the onerous duties of life. In fact the books are the milestones that indicate the distance covered by the seekers of truth on the path of life. They also point to the soaring heights of progress to be scaled by mankind in the days to come.

Books provide a link between the generations as well as the ages. The written words point to eternity. These can be preserved for any length of time and for any number of people. It is like a candle that illuminates other candles and thus banishes the darkness of ignorance. The process of reading books generally leads to the writing of books. Reading urges a person to take pen in his hand and share his thoughts with others. Wisdom filters through the sieve of words and takes an attractive form. Thus the joy of reading books merges imperceptibly into the pleasure of losing oneself in the creative process. Life is multidimensional and it needs to be viewed not from a single perspective but from varied viewpoints.

Swaranjit Savi, poet and artist, highlights the value of books, so very succinctly, in his poem Kitab Jaagdi Hai — Buy the book

Read it or simply lay it aside

Better place it in a rack at home

Forget about it, if you can

It needs rest and a long sleep

Spanning months and years.

Waith patiently

The book will get up one day

It will be read by someone

The one who had not bought

That book.

— N.S. Tasneem

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Award for farmers announced
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 2
Guru Angad Dev Veterinary and Animal Sciences University (GADVASU) will confer the Chief Minister’s award in the field of dairy farming, poultry farming and fish farming. The directorate of extension education, GADVASU, has invited applications from farmers undertaking different aspects of livestock farming.The last date for the submission of application is extended from February 13 to March 13.

Dr Onkar Singh Parmar, director, extension education, revealed that the awards were funded by the CM to boost the livestock sector in the state and would consist of cash prize as well as citation. Parmar said earlier the awards were given in the field of dairy farming but from last year, it was decided to give awards to farmers undertaking poultry and fish farming, along with dairy farming.

The forms can be obtained from the directorate of extension education and from Krishi Vigyan Kendars, deputy directors of state departments of animal husbandry, dairy development, fisheries and also from general managers of the co-operative and private milk plants. The contesting farmers will be shortlisted and a team of deans and directors of the university will visit different farms for making on-the-spot assessment. 

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Badal faces criticism over fund diversion
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 2
Manish Tewari, the spokesperson of the All India Congress Committee criticised the Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Badal for diverting the development funds from Ludhiana to Bathinda here today. He said people had realised that they were being cheated and discriminated by the Akali regime. He said, “The Akalis kept quiet when our funds were snatched from us and given to Bathinda”.

Referring to the shifting of the jet sewer cleaner from Ludhiana to Bathinda, just because Sukhbir’s wife Harsimrat Kaur was going to contest the parliamentary elections from there, Tewari said, it was an indication of things to come in future when everything would go to Bathinda.

The AICC spokesperson disclosed that the local municipal authorities had been asked to spare funds for the development projects in Bathinda. He said, “This is cheating and fraud with the people of Ludhiana which will not be tolerated in any case”.

Tewari said, Badals were welcomed to ensure full development in Bathinda, but not at the cost of Ludhiana. He said, the Akalis would have to face the repercussions in the coming parliamentary elections.

He said Ludhiana had been ignored and sidelined by the Akalis and during the last two years, there had been no developmental work as the funds were being diverted and transferred to Muktsar and Bathinda from Ludhiana which contributed so much to the state revenues.

He said they had already lost Ludhiana, as they had themselves conceded the defeat by fielding an ex-congressman and Bathinda they would certainly lose.

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Nehru Planetarium to get new look
Jyotika Sood
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 2
The journey in the world of stars and planets through planetarium in the city will soon be more interesting and comfortable as the civic body has decided to give Nehru Planetarium at Rose Garden a new look.

The decision has come in the wake of limited sources of entertainment in the city and the deplorable condition of the building. Talking to The Tribune, Municipal Commissioner GS Ghuman said, "The city has already very few places of recreation and the new look for planetarium will surely bring more people to it." He said he had directed XEN Karamjit Singh to prepare estimates about what all changes were need to be brought.

Interestingly, the planetarium has been already witnessing a low response from the residents despite nominal entry fee per show, which is Rs 2 for students and Rs 5 for adults. With the seating capacity of 80 people, the planetarium has a computer and a projector for the show. Started in late 1980's, the planetarium has generally been ignored.

However, according to the staff working at the planetarium, absence of an AC plant for the building is the reason why the projector doesn't performs well in summers. "The projector cannot work if the temperature goes beyond 29ºC," said the staff, adding that they had generator but it was not possible to run both ACs and projector with one generator as it caused problem. They also rued that the place had been lying in state of neglect from past so many years, but nothing has been thought about the place even though it was in front of Mayor's residence. They said Dr Narinderjit Singh was the only programmer they had and in case he was on leave, it meant no work.

On the news of civic body giving a strong thought to the planetarium, the staff suggested, "Demand for AC plant is very old. If it is incorporated with increasing seating arrangement and some other things, it will be just icing on cake."

Schoolteacher Gurleen Kaur said, "Even I use to go to planetarium when I was small and it's a good experience." If it came up with new ideas in city now, it would surely be an advantage for students as understanding of planets and stars through planetarium were different than what we taught or showed them on computer, she added.

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For Bhutan cops, it’s city of black canal
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Phillaur, March 2
Ludhiana, the industrial city popularly known as the Manchester of India, has a new name. Thanks to the industrial waste discharged by dyeing and electroplating units, some foreigners have named it a city of black canal.

A five-member group from the Royal Bhutan Police which is undergoing one-year training programme in police training at the Punjab Police Academy here recognise the city from the filthy Budda Nullah.

Lt Ugyen Wangchuk said he had visited the industrial capital of the state, which had a black canal and he was familiar with the stench that could be smelled from a distance.

The cops from Bhutan appreciated the shopping malls, hosiery and cycle industry, but expressed concern about the nullah.

“Something must be done to clean it as the contaminated water of the canal can endanger lives,” Wangchuk said. The cops missed no chance to mention the green cover of their country. “We do not have any black canal in Bhutan,” they said.

“We had a terrible day when we first saw the town. There was filthy black water and massive traffic jam,” they said.

They, however, appreciated the higher police education and research set up at the PPA.

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Nurses’ role in patient care discussed
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, March 2
A daylong workshop on "Critical care in nursing" was held at the Dumra auditorium of Dayanand Medical College and Hospital (DMCH), which was attended by about 150 members of the nursing fraternity from all major hospitals of the city.

The workshop was formally inaugurated by Prem Gupta, secretary of the DMCH Managing Society, who was accompanied by vice-principal Dr Jagdeep Wig, medical superintendents Dr Sandeep Puri, Dr Rajoo Singh Chhina, and Dr BS Shah, and principal Dr Jasbir Kaur, College of Nursing.

In his opening remarks, Dr Vivek Gupta, consultant in cardiac anaesthesia at Hero DMC Heart Institute, focused on the critical role performed by nurses in the area of patient care.

Elaborating on the subject, Dr Puri commented that even doctors decided on the proper line of treatment on the basis of the feedback provided to them by the nurses. As such, the quality of nursing care was the foundation of good medical care.

The nurses must always be observant and rely not only on their five senses but also on their sixth sense i.e. the sense of intuition.

Speaking on "Prevention of infections in ICU", Dr UP Sidhu, consultant, the department of chest medicine, DMCH, said recent studies had contributed to understanding of the risk factors and the impact of infections in the ICU, allowing a more rational approach to the prevention of such infections.

Dr Jasbir Kaur exhorted the participating nurses to strive for excellence in this human-centric work.

Among other topics that were covered during the workshop were the care of unconscious patients in the ICU, monitoring in the ICU, nutrition strategies in the ICU and practical aspects of ventilation.

The workshop concluded with practical demonstrations of some of the discussed topics on actual medical equipment and life-size human dummies.

Dr Vivek Gupta, organising secretary, distributed the prizes to the winners of tests organised during the workshop and expressed his gratitude to all participants.

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40 donate blood at camp
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 2
A blood donation camp was organised at Atam Vallabh Jain College, in which more than 40 students donated blood here on Saturday.

The camp was organised under the aegis of the Rotaract Club and the medical team of Guru Tegh Bahadur Hospital conducted the services.

Dr Vinod Sharma, district governor, Rotaract Club, inaugurated the camp and urged students to actively participate in social service.

“Youth can steer the society to a progressive front with their energy and enthusiasm,” he said. He further said India was one of the four countries across the world where polio cases had been detected. He asked the youth to work overtime to make the nation polio-free.

KK Dhir, founder registrar of Punjab Technical University, who was instrumental in organising the event, appreciated the students for their overwhelming response. He said the students should take inspiration from martyrs who sacrificed their blood for their nation.

Kashmiri Lal Jain, college president, felicitated six students who went to the DMCH to donate blood to save life of a heart patient of Hoshiarpur. 

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484 examined at medical camp
Our Correspondent

Mullanpur Dakha, March 2
The Jeewan Dan Charitable Society, in association with panchayat of Salempur village, organised a free medical camp at High School of the village, near here.

The camp was inaugurated by Darshan Singh Shivalik, MLA, Dakha, and Sanjeev Prabhkar, XEN, PSEB, was guest of honour. President of the society Dr Gurdeep Singh said 484 patients for cardiac, sugar and bone diseases were examined by a team of experts from DMC Hero Heart Institute, lead by senior cardiologist Dr Naved Aslam, senior endocrinology consultant Dr Navin Mittal, Dr Pawan Dhingra and Dr Harpreet Jolly.

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500 attend medical camp
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, March 2
A neuro and heart check-up camp was organised at Sobti Neuro and Super Specialty Hospital here today. As many as 500 patients suffering from disorders of nervous system and cardio-vascular diseases were examined.

Diagnostic tests like TMT, echography, angiography, CT scan, MRI and EEG were carried out at subsidised cost while routine laboratory tests like blood sugar, blood cholesterol and ECG were done free of cost.

Dr Sobti, consultant neuro surgeon, said neurological disorders like epilepsy, headache and backache were on the rise whereas cases of head injuries and brain tumours were getting complicated in the absence of proper follow-up. He claimed that stress due to modern life style was the main factor behind headache and advised the patients exercises and yoga while asking them to adopt a positive attitude towards life.

Dr Kulwant Singh, cardiac specialist, said the main cause for the increase in heart diseases was the increase in take of fat-rich diet, fast food and the highly stressful life style. He advised the patients to switch over to simple eating habits and change the stressful life style. 

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‘Benefits of science must reach common man’
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 2
"India is now being viewed as a future economic power and is a prospective market for many developed countries. The uniqueness of Indian mind has been well accepted globally. It was the Indian intellect that influenced events of the 20th century. There is no dearth of talent in India. Indian doctors, engineers and information technologists are serving meticulously the world over,” these were expressed by PAU VC Dr Manjit Singh Kang on the occasion of National Science Day on Saturday at PAU.

Dr Kang said the benefits of science and technological developments must reach the common man. He said the scientists should endeavour addressing the requirements of the common man through formulating need-based scientific programmes. He said PAU had recently organised programmes like science congress, etc. to promote scientific temperament.

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City girl shines in MA(English) exam 
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 2
City girl Nafees was awarded the first prize for scoring the highest percentage of 61in the MA (English) examination of the University School of Open Learning (USOL).

Speaking about her achievement, Nafees, an alumnus of Sacred Heart Convent School, said it was her focused approach towards studies that helped her to get this distinction.

She claimed, “Being a student of B.Com, learning the language at the higher level was not a very easy thing to do. However, I was determined to excel in the language and put in my honest efforts.”

She thanked her parents for their constant motivation.

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300 students awarded
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 2
With a view to recognise the sincere efforts put by students in various fields, the annual prize distribution function was held in the auditorium of Government College for Women here today.

Harish Rai Dhanda, chief parliamentary secretary, was the chief guest and Vijay Dhanda was the guest of honour. Principal R K Aulakh accorded a warm welcome to the guests. She read the annual report of the session and highlighted the achievements of the college in the field of academies, sports and cultural activities.

He exhorted the students to do something for the nation. He congratulated and appreciated the students for their excellent performance. He announced a grant of Rs 5 lakh for the college hall.

As many as 300 students were awarded prizes for their excellent performance in the field of academics, sports and extra-curricular activities.

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NGO opens school for poor kids
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 2
Several non-government organisations have set up a school for the children of domestic helps at BRS Nagar L-Block here.

The school, opened in the first week of February, has admitted as many as 100 children within a month and is working towards providing a shelter to the children while studying.

Being run under a tent for the time being, the school set up by Maha Sabha, Jaago, and welfare society of BRS Nagar is waiting for good samaritans to help them.

Yesterday, Chief Parliamentary Secretary, Harish Rai Dhanda, visited the school and assured that the government would provide a grant for the building.

Col JS Brar, Jaswant Jeerakh, Gurmel Singh, Rajinder Singh, Teja Singh, all associated with the three organisations, said the land mafia was trying to grab the piece of lands on which the school was set up. They said they would name the school after Gadar martyr Baba Bhan Singh.

‘‘The school has attracted a lot of children. In the first week of February, there were only 25 children. Now, the number has risen to 100 within three weeks. The children, whose parents were not in a position to arrange money for their education, were attracted to the school. Their teacher, Maninder Kaur, is working very hard for the children,’’ said Jeerakh.

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Private teachers go on mass casual leave
Our Correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh, March 2
The private schools remained closed here on Saturday, as the staff went on a mass casual leave in protest against the alleged indifferent attitude of the government towards the long-pending demands of private teachers.

Some activists were reportedly arrested in Chandigarh, where they had tried to cross barricades put up by the administration.

The activists of the Private-Aided Schools Teachers’ Union marched to Chandigarh to participate in the state-wide agitation launched by the union.

Union president Raghbir Singh Grewal claimed all private-aided schools in the area remained closed on Saturday because the teachers proceeded on a mass casual leave.

The union asked the government to consider the demands of the teachers and demanded a pension scheme and parity with the government teachers.

The staff of local schools, including MGMN Senior Secondary School, JM Shri Kundan Kanya Mahavidyalaya and Guru Nanak Kanya Mahavidyalaya, also joined the procession. Heads of various schools Pardeep Sharda, Bhupinder Kaur and Sudesh Verma addressed a rally before leaving for the agitation. 

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Thieves thrive on MC property
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 2
It seems that thieves are making merry on MC property these days, it has happened countless number of times that special inverters and batteries installed at five key road crossings to run traffic lights have been stolen, leaving serpentine queues on the roads during power cut hours.

Causing embarrassment to the local police, the thieves caused losses in lakhs to the Municipal Corporation.

On one hand the police is left in a quandary over the thieves and on the other hand it has to deal with long queues and knotty jams at the traffic light due to frequent power breakdown.

Bharat Nagar Chowk, Dholewal Chowk, Bhai Bala Chowk, Durga Mata Mandir intersection and Gill Chowk are the main trouble spots.

Commuters blame the non-functioning traffic lights at these points for the chaos.

Traffic snarls gets bad to worst during the time of routine power cut from 11 am to 3 pm.

The police has till date not lodged an FIR regarding the thefts even though officials of the Municipal Corporation has sent complaints on the matter.

But senior traffic official says he has no knowledge about the thefts.

The MC official passes the buck to the police and said that the MC did not have funds to install the inverters.

It is people, who are suffering in the on going tug-of-war between the MC and the police.

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Accused sewadar caught by villagers
Our Correspondent

Raikot, March 2
The sewadar of gurdwara, who had abducted a minor girl of Tugal village, was caught by the villagers, when he came to the village to pick his belongings.

A case under Sections 363 and 366 of the IPC had been registered against him at the Sudhar police station on February 3 on the statement of victim’s mother Balbir Kaur. The police has now added Section 376 of the IPC in the FIR.

Santa Singh (60) of Batthu Chuck village, Amritsar, was working as sewadar at gurdwara of Tugal village and used to collect food from the nearby villages. Balbir Kaur of Tugal village had accused him of abducting her 11-years-old daughter, Rupinder Kaur (name changed), on February 1. The girl and her family frequently visited the gurdwara. She said, somehow, the accused seemed to have brainwashed her daughter and abducted her. She went missing from the gurdwara on February 1, along with Santa.

The victim said Santa took her to Sudhar on the pretext of buying her shoes and clothes. He bought shoes for her from Sudhar and took her to Patiala on the pretext of buying her good clothes from Ludhiana. She could not make the difference in Patiala and Ludhiana. At Patiala, he raped her twice, thereafter he took her to Chakku village in Kaithal district of Haryana to the house of his cousin, Virsa Singh. There also, he made physical relations with her, threatening to kill her.

The teenage daughters of Virsa Singh, somehow, asked her about her relation with Santa Singh. She broke out and narrated the whole story. They informed their father of the incident, who threatened to call village panchayat. Fearing being exposed, he left the village for Amritsar, leaving her back and started calling the villagers that the girl was with Virsa Singh and they had falsely implicated him. The Sudhar police recovered the girl from Chakku village in Haryana.

Santa tried to collect his belongings from Tugal village gurdwara by changing his guise. The villagers identified him and nabbed him. He was thrashed by the villagers. Thereafter, his face was blackened and he was made to wear a garland of shoes. Later, he was handed over to the police.

A team of three doctors of the Sudhar civil hospital conducted the medical examination of the girl and the swabs have been sent to the chemical laboratory at Kharar.

Santa was produced before the magistrate at Ludhiana courts, who ordered judicial remand for him till March 14.

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Six booked for assault
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, March 2
The Jagraon police today booked six persons for entering the house of a man, identified as Gursewak Singh, and beating him and his mother badly.

Gursewak in his complaint stated that on February 28 he along with his mother went to a marriage party. Sita of Ajit Nagar also accompanied them.

While returning, he started smoking and Gursewak’s mother objected to his smoking in the car.

In the evening he along with Jaspreet Singh, Shinder Singh, Raju and Kunni, all from Ajit Nagar, came equipped with blunt weapons and beat them.

The victims were admitted to the civil hospital, Jagraon. The Jagraon police has registered a case against the accused under Sections 452, 323, 148, 149 of the IPC. No arrest has been made so far.

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2 held with stolen mobiles
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, March 2
The police yesterday nabbed two pick-pockets with stolen goods.

The accused used to pick the pockets at religious places or marriage palaces. They were expert in snatching mobiles and sell these to labourers working around at cheaper rates.

The accused have been identified as Gurtej Singh of Landeke village in Moga and Jeewan of Bharatpur in Rajasthan. ASI Swaran Singh nabbed them on the basis of an information that they were going towards Gurudwara Nanaksar to pick pockets. He laid the naka on Chuhar Chak Road at Nanaksar and attested them with three mobile phones worth more than Rs 30,000 and a wallet of an NRI containing some documents and five credit cards.

The accused were presented before Judge Mandeep Kaur Bedi, who sent them on one-day police remand. The police has registered a case against them under Sections 379 and 411 of the IPC.

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Canadian man booked for dowry
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, March 2
The police has registered a case against dowry seeker Canadian husband. Sarabjit Kaur of Gure village near here in her application to SSP (Ludhiana Rural) Gurpreet Singh Bhullar has stated that she was married to Ajaypal Singh of Shaheed Bhagat Singh Nagar of Mullanpur Dakha on June 3, 2007.

In her application on October 8, 2008, she had alleged that though her father Gurinder Singh gave adequate dowry at the time of marriage, her husband turned out to be a greedy person. Within a couple of days of the marriage, he started demanding Rs 5 lakh if she wanted to go with him to Canada.

Her father somehow arranged this amount and in August, 2007, he paid Rs 5 lakh to him. Immediately, he left for Canada but returned about a month later and again started demanding another Rs 5 lakh from her.

She narrated the whole episode to her father and the family decided not to pay him any more. On this, he started harassing her and left for Canada. Despite several requests, he neither returned nor did he take her to Canada.

When she lost all hopes from her husband, she complained to the SSP, Jagraon, who entrusted SP(D) Pritam Singh to inquire the matter.

Pritam Singh found the allegation true and then the SSP sent the inquiry report to DA Legal to have his opinion. On the recommendation of the DA Legal, the SSP recommended the SHO to register a case against the accused.

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