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Allotment of plots by LIT under scanner
Kuldip Bhatia

Ludhiana, March 16
After the entire allotment of plots made by the Ludhiana Improvement Trust (LIT) since April, 2007, were frozen and further allotments were stayed by the Principal Secretary, Local Government, Punjab, on the directions of the State Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum last month, the Directorate of the Local Government is understood to has ordered an inquiry by a PCS officer in the allotment of plots to locally displaced persons (LDPs).

LIT officials were also in the process of filing first information reports with the police about such allotments that were suspected to have been made fraudulently and also challenging the verdict in favour of the allottees in the national forum.

Even though the officials were tightlipped about these developments, highly placed sources in LIT revealed that the exercise of preparing a complete list of allotment of plots from April 2, 2007, had been completed and officials were going through each and every case of allotment of plot to find out whether the allotment was genuine. In case of questionable allotments, the officials were trying to ascertain the connivance of any employee of the trust so that the guilty persons could be proceeded against.

Since the next date of hearing of the case before the state forum is March 18 when both Principal Secretary, Local Government, DS Bains, and Administrator of the LIT GS Ghuman are to appear in person, the inquiry assigned to the PCS officer was desired to be completed today and report submitted to the local government department immediately so that the officials appearing on behalf of the department could be fully prepared before the forum.

On the last date of hearing of the case on February 12, 2009, Justice SN Aggarwal (retd), president of the commission, had pointed an accusing finger at the working of the LIT and, in particular, the process of allotment of plots.

Granting a period of one month to the department of the Local Government for a detailed inquiry in allotments of plots by LIT, the commission had directed the state government to provide it with status of the probe, earlier conducted by the joint secretary of the local government department and whether any FIR had been lodged by the LIT, if allotments were found to have been made in a fraudulent manner.

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PAU Sexual Harassment Case
Panel constituted for fresh probe
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 16
Punjab Agricultural University (PAU) Vice-Chancellor Dr M.S. Kang today said a one-member committee had been constituted by the authorities for a fresh probe into the alleged sexual harassment case against Director, Students Welfare, Dr Dulcha Singh Brar.

A senior woman IAS officer of the Punjab cadre has been appointed for the task. Dr Kang said that he does not want to name the person at this stage as this might hamper the probe.

The new committee has been formed after a period of about a month since Dr Brar was chargesheeted by authorities in the first week of February. Dr Brar had requested the authorities to constitute another committee to probe the case in an “unbiased manner” as he did not have faith in the previous committee.

It may be mentioned here that a woman employee, working under Dr Brar, had filed a complaint of sexual harassment against him in the second week of September following which a four-member committee, headed by the Dean, College of Home-Science, Dr Neelam Grewal, was constituted.

After recording the statements, the committee had submitted the report to the VC following which Dr Brar was put under suspension.

The case was further discussed during the Board of Management meeting at Chandigarh and it was decided to revoke the suspension orders of Dr Brar.

The complainant has maintained silence over the issue. She however said: "I have full faith in the authorities and I am confident that ultimately truth will win.”

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Aphid attack on wheat fields
Experts advise farmers not to panic
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 16
Farmers in the region are worried over the aphid (tela) attack on matured wheat crop. Yellow rust on wheat has also been reported in many pockets of the state, particularly on wheat cultivar PBW-343.

There are reports that the crop in the entire belt of Jagraon, Raikot and Moga is affected by the disease. The farmers in areas like Lalton, Pakhowal, Jodhan and Mansuran, too, are worried over the disease attack on acres of the standing crop. But scientists at Punjab Agricultural University (PAU) here have advised farmers not to panic unnecessarily as with the rising temperature, the population of the insect will decrease.

Gurmit Singh, a farmer from Lalton village, said this was a major problem the farmers were suffering with in this part of the region. He said it was a black-coloured fly, which attacked the green grain. "It fully stops the growth of grain. We have been spraying in the fields. The entire fields are affected in Lalton village with the aphid attack. We are much worried and have crossed our fingers for good crop this season as the harvesting season is going to start anytime in the end of March", said Gurmit Singh.

Another farmer Narvinder Singh said yellow-rust (peeli-poongi) had also started appearing in certain fields in Lalton Kalan village. "No spray has been recommended for it. This has been for the first time that we are facing with this problem", he added.

District president, Bharti Kisan Union, Faridkot, Sukhchain Singh, said Muktsar, Ferozpur and Faridkot areas, there were not much reports of aphid attack on wheat crop. "It was there in February but with recommended sprays, we have been able to save our crop", he said.

The disease had started appearing in the first week of February in the district of Ropar, Fatehgarh Sahib and Hoshiarpur. Subsequently, it started spreading to others areas due to favourable climatic conditions.

But the scientists at the PAU here have asked farmers not to get panicky as the population of the disease was decreasing with each passing day with an increase in the temperature.

"As the temperature is increasing, insects will die slowly. During February and March, this attack is common but with recommended sprays, we can easily tackle the problem. At the same time, the farmers are advised not to spray unnecessarily in their fields if there is no aphid attack. In case they have to, border areas can be sprayed", said a senior entomologist at the PAU.

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Tension over poster in EWS Colony
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 16
Tension gripped the EWS Colony today after some radicals damaged a poster of Jesus Christ last night and beat up two pastors. Residents of the EWS Colony staged a dharna today afternoon to protest against the incident and demanded action against the accused.

According to Albert Dua, a resident of the EWS Colony, some 20-30 men entered the colony and tore the picture of Jesus Christ and beat up pastors Tiwari and Paul, who are looking after the church.

The police has started investigations into the matter.

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Teenagers befool car driver; steal laptop, camera
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 16
Thieves fled with a laptop and a camera from a car by deceiving the driver near Bharat Nagar Chowk here today. The incident took place this afternoon when two teenaged thieves took the laptop and camera from the car of DP Singh, which was parked outside Surya Hotel.

DP Singh, who is working with Coca-Cola company, left his laptop and camera inside the car for some urgent work in the hotel.

According to the car driver, a teenaged boy knocked at the door and told him that diesel is flowing out from his car.

When he stepped out of his car to check the fault, the other teenaged boy saw the opportunity and took the laptop and camera. The thieves ran in different directions to confuse the driver.

In the meantime, the Kochar Market police reached the spot and started the investigation.

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Domestic quarrel turns ugly
Man tries to set house on fire; held
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 16
A domestic quarrel took an ugly turn when a man, reportedly in an inebriated condition, tried to commit suicide by setting his house afire at Harbanspura late last night.

However, the alert cops foiled the suicide bid and arrested him. Gurinder Singh, a resident of Harbanspura, had a heated argument with his wife, who chided him for coming home in an inebriated condition.

According to the police, Gurinder first torched his motorbike by pouring kerosene oil on it and opened the knob of a LPG gas stove.

As Gurinder was in process to light a matchstick, the police reached the spot and arrested him.

The incident spread panic in Harbanspura and surrounding areas. The neighbours said the couple was fighting at the top of their voice. They alleged that Gurinder, in process of setting his house on fire, also put their life in danger.

Gurinder's wife, Paramjit Kaur, accused him of assaulting her. She alleged that he tried to kill the entire family by setting the house on fire.

The police has booked Gurinder on the charges of assault and for an attempt to suicide.

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Asst registrar held for graft
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 16
The Ludhiana Vigilance today arrested Ravinder Singh, Assistant Registrar, Cooperative Societies, Payal, for allegedly accepting a bribe of Rs 10,000.

Talking to mediapersons here today, SSP, Vigilance, Kanwarjit Singh Sandhu said: “Ravinder was nabbed following a complaint from Ranjit Kaur of Bhuani village. Ranjit is honorary secretary of a Scheduled Caste Landowner Cooperative Society and had sought help of Ravinder to remove encroachments on a land measuring 118 bhiga and 16 biswa that was owned by her cooperative society.

However, the accused demanded Rs 20,000 for initiating action and the deal was struck at Rs 10,000."The SSP revealed that a trap was laid under DSP Gurcharan Singh and the accused was arrested today while Ranjit was handing over the money to him. 

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Woman prisoners a harassed lot
Have to ‘bribe’ cops to meet kids
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 16
The prisoners, especially women, are facing a tough time while they are being ferried to the court complex for hearings. The women prisoners face difficulties while meeting their families during the time of hearing, as they complain of eve teasing by their male counterparts.

With no shade to park the vehicles, the prisoners are made to bear the heat till the time they are shifted to Bakshi Khana. With no water facility this, too, is in a pitiable state, where many prisoners are kept.

A woman inmate alleged that they had to grease the palm of cops to meet their children. There have been complaints of eve-teasing by their male counterparts while they are being taken to court.

Over the years, Bakshi Khana has become a perfect destination to smuggle narcotics. Once handed over to the prisoners, they further try to transport the drugs inside the jail.

Several cases have been reported in the past where the inmates have been nabbed while taking the drugs inside the jail. The sources said in most cases, the prisoners have successfully managed to take the drugs inside the jail.

“This cell and buses in which they are ferried to jails are in a bad state. Even animals are not treated this way,” an inmate said.

A cop said, “We are under a constant pressure as some prisoners are violent and fight over petty issues.”

While the officials are passing the buck to the politicians by saying that it is the job of a jail minister to make adequate arrangements for the prisoners.

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Class V Exam Begins
Dingy rooms without benches
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 16
There was smooth beginning of Class V examinations today and the first paper was that of mathematics. During a visit to different centres of examinations at government schools, the reporter found that small children were taking their examinations while sitting on a jute mat on the floor.

There was no provision of benches. The rooms of the examination centres were dingy and there was no proper arrangement of light. The authorities had kept the windows open to allow the sunlight in the rooms. But the centres were by and large peaceful.

While this reporter was visiting a centre, a flying squad team, headed by Gurdeep Kaur, principal, Government Inservice Training Institute, made a surprise checking of the centre.

The students found the question paper easy. DEO (secondary) Amarjit Kaur also inspected 10 centres in the district. She disclosed that 359 centres have been set up in Ludhiana district. More than 50,000 students were appearing in the examinations in the district.

Earlier, more than 12,000 teachers have been put up on duty to hold the Class V examinations, which began today in the state. The examinations are being conducted by the education department under the Sarva Shiksha Abhiyaan for first time.

Earlier, the examinations were conducted by the Punjab School Education Board. The department has also put on duty the teachers of primary schools and given them the duties of marking the papers.

Avtar Singh, Controller of Examinations, told The Tribune yesterday that all arrangements had been finalised and the question papers had been sent to the District Education Officers, who had been made overall in charge of the examinations in the districts.

More than four lakh students will be taking the examinations. The examinations will be over on March 20 and result will be declared on March 31.

The education department has also allowed the affiliated schools to be used as centres for examinations. Earlier, the government had not permitted the use of the buildings of the private schools. However, the supervisory staff would be from the government schools in the centres, said Avtar Singh.

The board conducted the examinations last year and charged Rs 100 per student as admission fee. This year, the education department has charged Rs 20 per student from general category and Rs 5 from scheduled caste students.

Amarjit Kaur, District Education Officer (Secondary), Ludhiana, said as many as 359 examination centres had been set up in the district and more than 50,000 students would appear in the examinations.

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‘Indifferent’ govt machinery

In a classic case of shrugging off the responsibilities, the Municipal Corporation, the police and even the colony residents, on Sunday night, passed the buck for clearing a sack feared to be a dead body on Sham Singh road. The problem became more peculiar when the body turned out to be one of a German Shepherd.

On Sunday night, foul smell emanating from a sack created panic among the residents relaxing on the weekend. At the first glance, everyone suspected that there was a human body in the sack. A lady, who was supported by many others, said: “The smell was different from the one associated with dead animals. This one looked human”.

A police team checked the sack and confirmed to the officers that it was a dog. A well-connected resident called up a The Tribune reporter and asked him to ensure that a senior police officer personally visit the spot.

Interestingly, the job of opening the sack was done by reporters with local dailies. After opening the sack, one of the journalist said: "See for yourself. This is dead body of a four-legged creature, and not a two legged human”. The trouble started now. After discovering that it was a dog, no one showed any professional commitment towards removing the sack. The police said it was not their job and the MC officials too left it unattended. Interestingly, there seemed no one from any resident welfare association as well. Residents had to privately engage a sweeper to get the body cleared.

Objections raised

Once again, the proposed sterilisation of stray dogs in the city by an Ahmedabad-based NGO, Animal Health Foundation (AHF), with the financial support of the civic body, has run into trouble with a local NGO, Mamta, throwing a spanner in the works.

Terming the method to be adopted for sterilisation of dogs as cruel, the local NGO has sought cancellation of the MoU signed between the AHF and the MC. Choosing not to get involved in the controversy, the civic body set up a committee to seek information from the AHF on the objections raised, which is still to submit its report, after which a final decision is expected to be taken. In the wake of alarming proportions, the stray dog menace has assumed in every nook and corner of the city and cases of dog bites going up manifold in the absence of any measures to control the canine population, the Mamta would have done well to be a little more considerate towards the human population suffering at the hands of thousands of stray dogs.

Summer siesta

Summer siesta sessions are round the corner, with the temperature gaining heat gradually with each passing day. When The Tribune lensman went to GMT School, on the weekend, he saw certain gentlemen dozing off in the waiting hall. They were waiting for their wards, who were appearing in an entrance examination for the banking sector.

The photographer was amused to see a parent dozed off on his scooter. An onlooker said: "A little while ago, he was saying he was sleepy and could not leave his scooter unattended".

Magic of Internet

With technology making leaps and bounds, it has made life of every individual easier. One of my friends is the best example of people taking the help of technology to make their work easier. In order to impress her mother-in-law, she thought of making new dishes everyday and give her a surprise. She daily logs on to one of the cooking sites and learn one new recipe each day.

From main course dishes to desserts, she learns everything from sites and makes it the following day. Her mother-in-law got so impressed with her that she gifted her diamond earrings. Little did she know that it was all the magic of Internet. If her daughter-in-law had no access to the Internet, she would have been cooking simple daal and sabzi, and not the exotic dishes. Everyone in her family has now become a great fan of her cooking, while she secretly smiles and thanks the Internet.

Youngest Rotary chief

Enterprising city-based industrialist Sanjiv Sethi has become the youngest governor of the Rotary International District 3070, which covers the states of Punjab, Himachal Pradesh and J&K.

When he would see his father JK Sethi discharge his duties as the district governor some two decades ago, he wished to emulate him. The industrialist, not only realised his dream, he did it with a difference. Sethi has not only handled his business successfully, he has also been able to take out time for charity and service to the mankind. He likes to undertake big projects to serve the community. He now wants to reach out to the people in the villages to serve them more effectively.

He said the Rotary Club would intensify the campaign against polio in the region.

Music works

Ludhiana is a city of enterprising businessmen, who surely know how to use innovation to enhance their business. An auto-rickshaw driver, this correspondent met recently, provided testimony to the fact. While most auto-rickshaw drivers have a set of radio installed in their vehicles as a means of entertainment, this particular person had an expensive hi-fi Sony music system fitted in his auto-rickshaw.

The auto driver said though he was not too keen spending a fortune on the music system, but he had decided to have one installed in his vehicle after some student clients had jokingly remarked that it would have been wonderful if autos plying in the city had some good music to offer. "The music system has earned me numerous permanent clients, especially university students," remarked the tech savvy auto driver.

Search for school

Having undergone their share of anxiety and apprehensions in schooldays, the plight of “poor parents” is beyond words when they are subjected to worst fears in the lobbies of the so-called leading city schools during kindergarten admissions.

Sweating hands, fingers crossed, dried throats, trembling voices make even the most loud parents mere spectators as they stand before the “notice boards” of the schools to see the interview results. Facing similar parenting blues, it was difficult for an NRI mother to send her daughter to kindergarten, who is frantically searching for a “school with a soft approach”.

Overcome by the fear of interviews and admission criteria, she is unable to send her six-year-old daughter to the main school, instead, is requesting her friends and acquaintances to suggest a normal school that should treat the child like a child.

Contributed by: Mohit Khanna, Kuldip Bhatia, Sanjeev Bariana, Manav Ghuman, Rajesh Bhambi, Charu Chhibber, Anshu Seth.

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MC accused of causing delay in plans
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 16
The Ludhiana Builders and Designers Association has accused the Municipal Corporation of following a “pick-and-choose” policy for sanctioning the building plans of areas from 25 to 200 sq yards.

The association president Jaspal Singh said: "It should not take more than 15 days to sanction a commercial plan but the way the MC has been working has disappointed us. The meetings with the Municipal Commissioner, G.S. Ghuman, have also turned to be futile."

He added that the documents they availed through the RTI Act revealed that their commercial plans were sanctioned by the ATPs, MTP and STP but it was the signature of MC Commissioner that was causing the delay. He said the plans which were submitted in July and August last year still awaited the MC's nod.

“We have sought information on some buildings that have come up without site plan approval of the MC and would now request a probe into the matter by writing to Local Bodies Minister Manoranjan Kalia and Chief Vigilance Officer A.K. Prabhakar,”, he added.

When contacted, MTP Hemant Batra said the allegations were baseless and no plans were being delayed. 

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Empowering the powerless
Manav Ghuman
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 16
Though their life is filled with deep silence, it has never deterred their spirits. Reason: they are armed with a unique medium of communication called sign language.

The Deaf Way Foundation, a voluntary organisation, held a seminar to empower women at Punjab Agricultural University here yesterday.

The seminar was different from the usual ones. Unlike a speaker addressing the audience, the addressers here conveyed their messages by gesture. Amidst silence in the hall, all one could see was the quick motion of the hands. Moreover, they put across their mixed feelings through their expressions, so easily comprehensible to a lay man.

Reema Jain, coordinator of the community for women at the Deaf Way Foundation, lends a helping hand to hearing impaired women in gettting justice and making them independent. She is also committed to solving their married-life problems and helping them out of domestic violence. Though hearing-impaired, she understands all problems faced by such souls.

“Both my parents are deaf and they were always worried about my future. I have studied till class XII and that, too, in a normal school. Students in the school used to laugh at me and I had no friends. It was just my will power that I learnt the English language and later on did courses in beauty and cooking,” she smiled.

Reema got married to Anuj, also a deaf guy, and their eight-year-old daughter Ananta is a normal child. “I am very happy for my daughter. I want her to do everything what we canot and scale new heights in life,” she enthused. Ananta is determined to become an interpreter an interpreter and help these people in communicating their feelings through alphabets used by deaf and dumb.

Sonia Sharma, the interpreter, has been associated with the foundation for the past two years. Her elder brother is deaf and dumb who she learnt the sign language. “I joined the foundation to help them express their feelings in a better way,” she signs off.

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Medical centre in a state of neglect
Lovleen Bains

Doraha, March 16
The sub-centre of Doraha civil dispensary too is in no better a position to prove its worth according to its allocation.

Recently, The Tribune highlighted the plight of the 55-year-old rented building of the dispensary, which effect the principal secretary, along with the CMO of Ludhiana, who paid a visit and dwelt upon the possibilities of fund-allocation in near future for its suitable and healthy functioning.

Meanwhile, the sub-centre too looks to be a mockery of the medical aid and the medicinal facilities, being accorded to the residents and the villagers, for it is ailing under the heavy mess of pollutants surrounding it, in the form of the village pond, the water of which conveniently enters the sub-centre, thus adding insult to injury to the already bruised health centre.

The foul smell emitted out of the pool and the flies and mosquitoes that multiply on the stagnant pool are enough to prove as befitting carriers of any sort of contagious disease or can result in an epidemic outbreak even on the slightest pretext.

A single room in nearly 1.6 acres of government land and with an ANO put on the charge, the sub-centre has failed to be of any worth as the villagers rue that in such shabby locations, they never dare to visit the centre, for instead of getting cured for one, no one wishes to invite a few more ailments that will surely follow in its wake. “Moreover, a pool of dirty foul smelling water receives you at the very entrance and you cannot cross the place without keeping your nose covered,” they said.

The residents of the area demand that with this ample space, the government should open a mini primary health centre or a trauma centre to be erected for the accidental victims as the sub-centre is located on national highway.

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‘Docs ignorant about medico-legal cases’
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 16
After the US, it is the Indian doctors who are bearing the brunt of litigations in medico-legal cases. However, it is their duty and obligation to the sick as the medical report is a crucial piece of evidence in homicide, suicide, poisoning, burns and sexual assault cases, observed Dr S.K. Verma from UCMS, Delhi.

Dr RK Gorea, professor and head, department of forensic medicine, Gyan Sagar Medical College, however, held the doctors responsible for litigations. “They are ignorant about handling of medico-legal cases, hence try to avoid cases with legal connotation,” he said.

Medical Council of India (MCI) should increase credit hours in MBBS from 100 to 200 for thorough understanding of the doctors, suggested Dr Gorea.

Dr Gorea said that every medical institute should have a protocol for MLC (medico-legal cases) and a committee of experts should be formed to look into its implications.

However, speaking on the change in reports, he said, "The reports should not be changed after the discharge of the patients as it amounts to tempering. Additions should be made separately in case of missing or additional information,” added Dr Gorea.

He welcomed the Supreme Court orders on non-registration of criminal cases against the doctors without the expert committee's report. "This will save the doctors from uncalled for harassment, but at the same time the approach of the committee members should be fair and not to safeguard the interests of the guilty doctors," he observed.

Principal, DMCH, Dr Daljit Singh, Medical Superintendent and member the Punjab Medical Council Dr B.S. Shah gave an overview of various medico-legal issues related to clinicians. The experts shared their views during a medico-legal update organised by the department of Forensic Medicine, DMCH.

A textbook on forensic medicine and toxicology, authored by Dr Gautam Biswas, Associate Professor and HoD Forensic Medicine, DMCH, was released during the inaugural ceremony.

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Saumya has passion for poetry
Manav Ghuman
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 16
Poetry has been her passion since childhood. Saumya Tandon, who played the role of Kareena's sister, Roop, in superhit "Jab We Met", has a poetic heart and loves reading poetry.

During a video conferencing here, she said, "I have been writing since the age of six and my collection was also published with the name of 'Meri Bhavanayen' This book was nominated for national award. Since then whenever I get time, I get hold of my book and that's the time, I feel best. My poems are simple and deal mostly with feelings," she quips.

She took up projects as and when good roles came to her. She started with television and enjoyed it thoroughly then "Jab We Met" just happened to her and is extremely glad about it.

"Now I am now hosting "Dance India Dance" but that doesn't mean that I have given up on the big screen. I will be very much seen in movies in the coming months," she adds.

Every project she takes is a new challenge for her. Both acting and hosting are challenging in their own way. This will be her first anchoring experience on screen and hence she is very excited about it.

Telling about her fitness regime, she shares that she tries to go to the gym at least four times a week and exercise for an hour. "I don't really follow a diet regime but I definitely avoid oily food, carbs and other fattening stuff. I make sure I have my dinner at least three hours before I sleep everyday. Something I just can't control is my sweet tooth. I can’t resist sweets as much as I try," she smiles.

For Saumya, success is not a certain stature or an amount of money that she will collectively own at a point of life. For her success is to do what she truly believes in and desires to do and then trying 100 per cent to achieve it. "The realisation of the fact that I am following my heart and have a freedom to do so is the greatest inspiration for me. I want to die realising that I have done everything that I wished to do and not regretting that I could have done much more," she says.

While signing off she shares with people her motto of life, "It's a bit heavy to the ears but whenever I go through a dark phase in life, the words I keep repeating to myself are - 'True magnanimity lies not in never falling but rising everytime you fall". 

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LS Polls
Poll Duties: Headache for govt employees
Kanchan Vasdev
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 16
Election is giving a nightmare to public sector employees, who are trying hard to do away with the duties assigned to them during this period.

The election department of the district administration has sought the lists of employees from all public sector units and offices. With the process set in motion, the employees have already started feeling tense though the elections are two months away.

Every time during elections, government employees and teachers indulge in various methods to ensure that they are not put on the election duties. Several duties are revoked when employees give valid reasons and some even use their political and other connections to stay away from such duties.

A delegation of the Government School Teachers Union met Deputy Commissioner, Vikas Garg, urging him to spare the physically challenged and women staff from such duties.

They also demanded that the employees on the poll duty should be allowed to cast their votes at their respective polling booths. ‘‘Every year we are unable to exercise our franchise. We should be allowed to do so this time,’’ said Charan Singh Sarabha, an office-bearer.

He added women teachers should not be assigned poll duties, as the environment at the polling booths was not conducive for them. The office-bearers said they should be provided with public transport for reaching the polling stations, which were in remote villages. 

Cong disowns Galib aide

Ludhiana: The District Congress Committee (Urban) today disowned Ishwarjot Cheema, a party activist and former office-bearer of the National Students Union of India (NSUI), the student wing of the party, who joined SAD with two-time Congress MP Gurcharan Singh Galib last month.

In a joint statement here today, DCC chief Jagmohan Sharma and District Youth Congress president Dimple Rana said at present Cheema had no relationship with the party nor he was a primary member of the Congress. They said Cheema, a one-time PA to Ghalib, was making all statements in his individual capacity and the Congress had no link, whatsoever, with his remarks.

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Rally to promote govt schools
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, March 16
To promote admissions to the government school, the panchayat, students and authorities of a school at Rasulpur village organised an awareness rally near here.

The students presented songs, skits, plays and choreography related to the lives and sacrifices of martyrs giving information on culture of martyrdom in India.

PSWK, PTA and MTA committees of the school actively participated in the rally. The presentations in the rally were directed by Satwinder Singh of Chetna Kala Manch of Mullanpur Dakha. DTF leaders Naib Singh, Hardev Singh, and Malkait Singh, PTU block president Narinder Singh, BKU leader Nirmal Singh and others while addressing the gathering appealed to villagers to admit their wards to the government school and avoid the misrepresenting claims of private school that exploit the students and their parents.

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Spardha 2009
Desh Bhagat students bag overall trophy
Our Correspondent

Mandi Gobindgarh, March 16
Students of the Desh Bhagat Institute of Management and Computer Sciences brought laurels for their institution by winning a host of first and second prizes in the inter-college competitions held at different places in the state.

In a grand show called "Spardha-2009" organised by SSIMT, Dinanagar, these students grabbed the overall trophy by winning first positions in the fashion show, paper presentation, western group dance, choreography and mehndi competitions and second positions in the quiz, turncoat, mimicry, rangoli and skit competitions.

In another function "Partibha-09" held at the Gian Jyoti Institute of Management and Technology, Mohali, the institute’s teams annexed first positions in the giddha, rangoli, western group dance and the parody competitions and the second position in the laughter challenge and the Punjabi folk song competitions.

In "Crescendo -2009", held at the GGN Institute of Management and Technology, Ludhiana, teams of DBIMCS got first prize in giddha, quiz and dance competitions. 

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Doraha girl brings laurels
Our Correspondent

Doraha, March 16
Kusum, a student of SCD Government College, Ludhiana, and a resident of Doraha, recently presented a paper on “Gitanjali”, at Student's Conference of Linguistics in India (SCONLI), Centre for Linguistics, Jawahar Lal Nehru University, New Delhi.

Theme of Kusum's paper was lyrical intensity of Tagore's poems, the importance of liquid consonants, cosmic rhythm and the poetic language, diction, pitch and tone.

She deliberated upon the imagery, rhythm and atmosphere that Tagore skillfully created in “Gitanjali”, which gives one the feeling of poet's realisation of love, death and the life-beyond. She elaborated that Tagore found God to be a supreme musician.

“The language used by the poet is the language of emotion, rhythm, lyrical intensity. The songs of Gitanjali have an organic pattern and design.

The language used by the poet is simple, conversational, effortless, natural and familiar,” she stressed in the paper. Thus, Kusum opined that all the poems of “Gitanjali” are in a prayer-sense and perfectly organised.

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Desh Bhagat students win overall trophy
Our Correspondent

Mandi Gobindgarh, March 16
Students of the Desh Bhagat Institute of Management and Computer Sciences won laurels for their institute by winning a host of events in the inter-college competitions held at various colleges of the state.

In ‘Spardha-2009’, organised by the SSIMT, Dinanagar, the students grabbed the overall trophy by bagging the first positions in events such as fashion show, paper presentation, western group dance, choreography and mehndi. They finished second in quiz, turncoat, mimicry, rangoli and skit.

In ‘Partibha-09’, organised by the Gian Jyoti Institute of Management and Technology, Mohali, the teams of the institute won first positions in the events like giddha, rangoli, western group dance and parody.

They secured second positions in laughter challenge and Punjabi folk songs.

In ‘Crescendo -2009’, held at the GGN Institute of Management and Technology, Ludhiana, the teams got first positions in giddha, quiz and dance to the tune. The second position in the event, dance to the tune, was bagged by another team of the institute.

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Free surgical camp
Tribune News Service

A polio patient being treated at a surgical camp in Ludhiana on MondayLudhiana, March 16
Bhartiya Vikas Parishad Charitable Trust organised a free surgical camp for polio patients here today. Dr Pawan Dhingra and his team operated the patients free of cost. Bhartiya Vikas Parishad works for the physically handicapped people. The organisation offers various vocational courses to such people. The courses vary from computer training, candle making, paper bag crafting, book binding , stitching and embroidery.


A polio patient being treated at a surgical camp in Ludhiana on Monday. A Tribune photograph

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21 couples tie knot
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, March 16
The Lok Sewa Society, Jagraon, organised a mass marriage programme in which as many as 21 couples tied knots.

A community kitchen was also organised on the occasion. Kulbhushan Gupta, president of the society, said this was the 10th mass marriage programme by the society and the utensils and goods worth more than Rs 70,000 were given to the newly-weds.

SDM Mukand Singh appreciated the initiative of the society and said this was the right way to help the needy. He said more institutions should come forward for the selfless noble cause. 

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Groom, family taken for a ride 
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, March 16
A girl of Kokri village has reportedly deceived a boy by luring him into marriage. An inquiry by Ludhiana Tribune revealed that the marriage of Paramjit Kaur (name changed) of Kokri village was scheduled for today with a boy of Talwandi Mallian village.

The marriage was to be solemnised at Basant Marriage Palace on Sidhwan Bet road here. But the family of the groom came to know that the parents of the bride had earlier agreed to marry their daughter with boys of Chuhar Chak and Galib villages and had taken a considerable amount from them. It was stated that she was engaged to the boys also and till date the relationships had continued at both places. When the family talked on the issue with the parents of the girl, they refused to marry their daughter with the boy and failed to arrive at the marriage palace.

When talked to Piara Singh, manager of Basant Marriage Palace, he said a person from Talwandi Mallian booked the palace for 150 guests for Rs 20,000 and paid Rs 2,000 in advance.

He rued that around 11 am this morning, members of the groom's family came and took all material of catering stating that the marriage was cancelled. He said they even refused to make the balance payment of the rentals of the marriage palace.

When talked to the father of the groom, who is a retired teacher, he said they had paid the family of the bride heavily and lost the earning of his life. Refusing to divulge any information, he said “Our first priority is to get the refund of the payment made”. He also said the girl had done IELTS and the family was making fool of the boys aspiring to go abroad as they lured them of sending abroad after marriage with their daughter.

SHO Pritam Singh said nobody had contacted them with any complaint till date and they could only act when a complaint was lodged with them. 

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Mercedes launches M-class
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 16
Mercedes-Benz India launched its M-class here today. The SUV is available with two different engines: ML 320 CDI (featuring a high-torque diesel engine) and the ML 350 (powered by a high output gasoline engine).

Dr Wilfried Aulbur, CEO and managing director of Mercedes-Benz India said, “ The car offers the highest levels of luxury, comfort and on-road refinement combined with excellent off-road capabilities and best safety standards, we have maintained the same price for this product despite significant enhancements of equipment, features and performance”, he added.

It presents seven speed automatic transmission (7G-TRONIC), a height adjustable air suspension (AIRMATIC), an exterior sports package with alloy wheels, and luxurious leather interior with burr walnut accents. It features the famous 4MATIC permanent all-wheel drive system with a start-off and a Downhill Speed Regulation (DSR).

The cost of ML 350 is Rs 53.77 lakh and of ML 320 CDI is Rs 54 lakh. 

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Award for TVS Motor
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 16
TVS Motor won the coveted 2009 Progressive Manufacturer 100 (PM 100) Award for the end-to-end automation of the entire business process of its lubricant brand, TVS TRU4.

Instituted by the US-based Managing Automation Media, the award is designed to support and reflect the extensive drive by manufacturers across the globe to improve and capitalise on growth opportunities. Hundred projects that achieved distinction in at least one of the eight core disciplines defined by Managing Automation Media were recognised.

The disciplines include business model mastery, customer mastery, supply network mastery, data and integration mastery, innovation mastery, training and education mastery, leadership, and operational excellence.

Winners are chosen on the basis of mastery, business integration and use of technology.

“Automation of our lubricant business through seamless implementation of the progressive manufacturing concept, which advocates manufacturing business transformation, supported by advanced technology, has won us this award. We have been selected for our mastery in the Data and integration discipline. Our endeavour is to bring innovation into the manufacturing and distribution processes,” said the CIO, TVS Motor, TG Dhandapani.

An independent judging panel of eminent personalities from various industries, chaired by David R Brousell, editor-in-chief, Managing Automation Media, and Jeff Moad, executive editor, Managing Automation, reviewed the project nominations and chose the winners based on the scope, business impact and use of technology related to each discipline.

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Sewadar held cultivating poppy

Mullanpur Dakha, March 16
The Sudhar police yesterday arrested a sewadar of a gurdwara for cultivating poppy husk on the gurdwara premises. The accused, identified as Karnail Singh, was working as a sewadar at Sat Kartar Gurdwara in Burhail village near Sudhar for the last 27 years.

Following a tip-off, the police arrested him with 1.26 quintals of poppy plants. However, Karnail said he did not know cultivating poppy was illegal. — OC

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