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NGO to persuade candidates against liquor supply
Kanchan Vasdev
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 18
The Guru Gobind Singh Study Circle, an NGO here, has found a way to check distribution of liquor and narcotics for votes in the Lok Sabha elections by putting moral pressure on candidates not to supply these items.

The NGO is getting an undertaking from the candidates from all over the state that they will not serve liquor or distribute narcotics like poppy husk, opium and even psychotropic drugs to voters for votes.

With units all over the state and 17 other cities in the country, the NGO's activists are visiting candidates.

‘‘We have prepared a list of the things usually gifted to voters in elections. We will request candidates not to give away these substances to anybody,’’ said Inderpal Singh, chief secretary of the circle.

He added that though without any legal power, they would exert moral pressure.

Inderpal Singh said they started the process today at Daad village by distributing undertakings to their activists, who would go to all parts of the state and make the candidates sign these.

They also asked residents of Daad village to pledge not to vote for a candidate making people hooked to drugs or liquor.

‘‘In a survey, we found candidates supplied several substances to voters. In cities it was imported liquor, in villages it was country-made or poor brands and in most of the villages of Malwa poppy husk and opium were supplied. This time we are sure to bring about a change,’’ he said.

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Colleges flout norms for ‘good’ results
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 18
Despite clear-cut instruction of Panjab University (PU), most of the private colleges here are openly violating norms by putting subject teachers on examination duty, allegedly to get good results.

According to sources, the subject teachers, put on duty as invigilators during exams, help students solve their question papers.

It is the duty of chief coordinator (principal of the college) to ensure that there is no violation of varsity guidelines, but in order to "oblige" their managements, lecturers teaching the particular subject are being put on duties at certain centres, reveal sources.

Subject teachers, otherwise, are not supposed to become invigilators during exams of undergraduate or postgraduate classes.

Kamini Sharma (name changed), student at a women’s college in the city, said they were relieved to see their own teacher on duty during an exam. “The teacher was of great help and provided us with required information. We were even allowed to ask each other without making any noise,” she added. It may be mentioned here that the list of teachers is provided to the respective superintendents by the college authorities.

President, Government College Teachers' Association (GCTA), Punjab, Prof Jaipal Singh said that in case of limited staff and under unavoidable circumstances, the colleges could put subject teachers on exam duties.

“But other than that, if the norms are being flouted to get better results, it is wrong. The teachers must ensure that our future generations get quality education. For the sake of our own popularity or progress, we should not sell education,” said Prof Jaipal.

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Three killed in accidents
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 18
Two persons were killed and one was injured in two different accidents on Ferozepore Road here today.

Ajay Kumar (27) was killed, while Kehar Singh (50) was injured when their motor cycle on which they were travelling hit by a tanker here this morning near Baddowal. While Ajay was killed on the spot, Kehar Singh has been undergoing treatment at DMC. The police revealed that the driver of the tanker managed to flee and the vehicle had been impounded. A case has been registered.

In another accident, a man in 40s, identified as Buta Singh, was crushed to death by a bus. The police revealed that Buta was on his cycle and the speeding vehicle hit him. The bus driver fled and the vehicle had been impounded. A case has been registered.

Jagraon: Anshu Bhandari (29), an advocate of Jagraon, died in a road accident yesterday. He was driving Accent car (PB 25 C 8100), which rammed into a recovery van on the outskirts of Jagraon, leaving all members of the family injured.

He was returning home from Ludhiana last night along with his wife Simple Bhandari and two daughters when the accident occurred.

According to an eyewitness, all injured were admitted to the civil hospital, Jagraon. Doctors referred Anshu to Ludhiana from where he was first taken to Medicity Hospital and then to DMCH where he succumbed to his internal injuries.

The Sidhwan bet police has registered a case and impounded the vehicles. The Jagraon courts works remain suspended throughout the day as a mark of respect to the advocate.

The District Session Courts at Ludhiana also remained suspended for half day. The shocked Jagraon Bar Association passed a resolution to keep their offices closed for the day.

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Duping Farmers
Commission agents booked
Our Correspondent

Raikot, April 18
The Raikot police today booked two commission agents for allegedly duping farmers and embezzling their amount from sale of crops.

About 18 farmers, mostly from Sehbajpura village, including Karam Singh and Hardev Singh, had filed a complained with the then SDM, Raikot, Mukand Singh, that the accused, Bharat Bhushan and Naresh Kumar, did not pay them the amount to the tune of Rs 43.32 lakh for their sold produce. Inquiry into the matter found the allegations to be true and after due consultation, the Raikot police booked the accused.

The accused are still at large. Both accused are real brothers while Naresh Kumar, the younger one, was mentally retarded since birth.

Investigations revealed that the business of the accused was running into losses and they had taken loans at high interest rate from the farmers itself. This further worsened their financial position and in the meantime, one of the accused, Bharat Bhushan, developed some heart ailment as was hospitalised. The other partner, who was not mentally fit since birth, could not manage the business and everything collapsed. It has come to the notice that they had made payment to farmers and other creditors by selling off their properties and the amount pending was of the farmers who had lend them money.

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Akali leader attacked
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 18
A group of around eight persons led by Jasdeep Singh Konke and Sher Singh allegedly attacked Akali leader Randhir Singh Laddi at his office on Tajpur Road here today. The group leaders, who too are associated with the Shiromani Akali Dal, are stated to have some personal enmity with the victim.

According to information, Laddi was discharged yesterday from hospital and went to his office. While Laddi was working in his office, Konke, along with his group members, came to the site and started abusing and beating him. His friends tried to save him. They informed the police but the police failed to reach the spot. Finally, the police from four stations arrived at the site and controlled the position.

Later, in the evening, a case was also registered against Konke, Sher Singh and their accomplices under Sections 452, 323, 506, 148 and 149 of the IPC.

Both parties had a fight earlier too this week and during that time, a case was registered against Konke and Laddi was injured. Meanwhile, BJP leader Subhash Gupta complained that his Swift car was damaged during the incident and got a case registered with the police.

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Tribune Impact
Varsity postpones exams
Our Correspondent

Doraha, April 18
It is merely a day that the Tribune has highlighted a clash between the date of first election rehearsal and the university examination to be conducted on the same day i.e. April 22, the university has postponed the date of the examination. The new dates for the papers too have been announced.

The rehearsal duties of college teachers for the coming Lok Sabha elections can affect the smooth functioning of the university examinations especially those of Panjab University.

The teachers had objected that conducting the examination on April 22 would not be possible as a majority of the staff was being deployed on the election duty. All other dates of the rehearsal of elections i.e. May 7, May 9 and May 12, fall on the non-examination days and hence are not going to create any problem in the conduct of the examinations, said the teachers.

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Milk prices likely to increase
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 18
Consumers of milk might have to pay the price of elections, as in the coming days cost of milk is likely to increase up to Rs 2.

In this regard, the Progressive Dairy Farmers' Association (PDFA), Punjab, has already written letters to the departments of Milkfed, dairy development and Punjab State Farmers' Commission, requesting them to increase the price of milk immediately to save dairy farmers from huge losses.

Daljit Singh, president of the PDFA, said with the opening of export of mustard cake (used in fodder) by the Central Government recently, the domestic market was affected badly.

The mustard cake available at the price of Rs 800 per quintal was now being sold at a hefty amount of Rs 1,350 and above.

The rates of fodder had been increased between 20-30 per cent and it had become impossible for the dairy farmers to survive under such circumstances.

"These can be political gimmicks but why should we suffer? We want the rates to be increased to Rs 2 at least. We will be able to supply good quality milk and will be at par if the government increases the rates of milk. The dairy farmers are facing another problem as major companies have stocked good amount of maize (used in fodder) in godowns. When we will not have enough fodder to feed cattle, how will we survive?" asked the president further adding that 4 per cent VAT on D-oil rice bran should also be exempted for the farmer's welfare.

He also informed that the PDFA had held a meeting recently in which the issue was thoroughly discussed.

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Sonia, Manmohan to address rallies
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 18
The Akali-BJP government has failed on all fronts and has lost faith of its traditional voters due to booth-capturing during the last panchayat and zila parishad elections.

The price of their deeds would be paid by them in the coming Lok Sabha elections, said PPCC acting president Lal Singh, who was in the city today to canvas for Congress candidate Manish Tewari and address party councillors, office-bearers and other leaders.

Urging Congress councillors and leaders to put up a united show, Lal Singh said, "We need to work together to ensure that Congress wins the Lok Sabha poll and Manmohan Singh serves as Prime Minister for another tenure as it is the question of Sonia Gandhi's prestige."

Talking to mediapersons, the leader said, "The upcoming polls would display youth power and the Congress's mettle."

Terming Congress as a sea and SAD as a "chappar", the leader said, "The SAD-BJP alliance has not done any work for development in Punjab and this would spell doom for them.”

Giving details of Sonia Gandhi's and Manmohan Singh's schedule, he said, "The AICC supremo would address gatherings in Patiala and Jalandhar on April 30 and May 6, respectively. Similarly, PM Manmohan Singh would canvas in Punjab on May 2 and 11 at Ferozepore and Amritsar, respectively." He appreciated the Congress about its prime ministerial candidate.

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Tight security demanded at all polling booths
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 18
All-India Congress general secretary and Lok Sabha candidate from Ludhiana Manish Tewari today called upon the Election Commission to provide tight security at all polling booths.

He stated that looking at the past record of SAD-BJP in the panchayat elections wherein they had resorted to violence and booth capturing, it is must for the Election Commission to make proper arrangements at the polling booths in Punjab.

Further pointing towards the “pressure” exerted by Deputy Chief Minister Punjab Sukhbir Singh Badal on the civil and police administration to work in favour of SAD- BJP candidates, Tewari stated that Election Commission should make arrangements for CRPF and not state police.

He today carried out a padyatra in the Jamalpur area, falling under ward 13 of city, with the sole purpose of one to one contact with the voters of the area. Thereafter, he visited Bahadurke, Jasian, Ladhian Fatehpur Gujran, Qadian, Kutbewal Arayian and Bhattian Bet.

He was accompanied by ex-councillor Kanwardeep Singh Pappy along with thousands of workers. Manish listened to the grievances of residents, particularly elder citizens, and asured them that their grievances towards which state government and the municipal corporation has not paid any heed will be duly addressed by him.

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Charanjit opens office
Our Correspondent

Raikot, April 18
Proceeding in his crusade against Sukhdev Singh Libra, Congress candidate from Lok Sabha Fatehgarh Sahib seat, Charanjit Singh, yesterday opened his office at Raikot.

The opening ceremony had a tremendous response among the Akali workers. The opening function was attended by Inder Iqbal Singh Atwal, son of the Akali candidate, Charanjit Singh Atwal, deputy speaker.

Former MLA Raikot, Ranjit Singh Talwandi, declared the office open after cutting the ribbon. More than 2,000 Akali workers thronged the town to attend the function under the leadership of their local leaders Jagjit Singh Talwandi, president Amandeep Singh Gill, BJP president Vijay Kumar, Jain Satish Aggarwal and others.

On the occasion Ranjit Singh Talwandi while addressing the gathering asked to give a befitting reply to the Congress, who has exploited the country for the last 60 years.

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NRIs to boost Galib’s campaign
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 18
The Germany unit of the NRI wing of the Shiromani Akali Dal has sent a team of workers to hot up the election campaign of Gurcharan Singh Galib.

This was stated by Manmohan Singh, president of the unit. He further said many senior leaders, including senior vice-president Hansraj Singh Garha, vice-president Bahadur Singh Garcha, along with Rajinder Singh, Rajwinder Singh from America, Harsimratpal Singh from Spain, have also arrived to for canvassing of Galib.

While welcoming the leaders from abroad, Sukhbir Singh Badal, president, Shiromani Akali Dal, asked all workers to work with dedication for the success of the SAD-BJP candidate.

Meanwhile, president, Shiromani Akali Dal, Sukhbir Singh Badal, nominated Satpal Gosain as convener for proper coordination and effective campaigning within the six assembly constituencies falling in the Ludhiana constituency. Gosain will coordinate and issue necessary instructions to ensure effective campaigning during the election process. All meeting for the purpose of campaigning will be convened by him and all programmes be decided by him.

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One more files papers
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 18
On the second day of filing of nominations for the upcoming Lok Sabha elections from the Ludhiana constituency, only one person came to file his nominations here today.

According to information, Ajay Tandon is contesting parliamentary elections as an Independent. He has studied till Class XII. He has submitted an affidavit that he has Rs 30,000 and jewellery worth Rs 1 lakh as assets with him.

He claims to have support of students with him and said free education is going to be his poll plank and he will do all possible efforts to ensure that education becomes a priority.

With his filing of nominations, the total number of nominations from the city on the second day have gone to five. Four persons had filed their nominations, including BSP candidate Kehar Singh Ramgarhia.

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Cong legal cell formed
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 18
The election campaign planning and implementation legal cell of the Congress for the Ludhiana parliamentary constituency was constituted today.

The members of cell include Harpreet Sandhu, former additional advocate general, Punjab, Sandeep Virmani, Dr Dayal Pratap Singh Randhawa and Himmat Singh Shergill.

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Jimmy Shergill keeps date with city
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 18
Being a Punjabi, Jimmy Shergill loves playing Punjabi characters and this is the reason why he keeps on doing these films at regular intervals.

First it was "Mannat" and now "Tera mera ki rishta" and still to release "Munde UK de" opposite Neeru Bajwa. Incidentally, he also played a Punjabi character in his first movie "Maachis".

Though the film was is in Hindi, his character was that of a Punjabi youth. Jimmy was in the city at Waves Cinemas and thanked the audience for their overwhelming response to his recently released movie.

Talking about the movie, he said it was a topsy-turvy tale of love, family and relationships where a total fun-loving Punjabi boy living in Vancouver, and Rajjo, a girl of principles, just can't help asking each other “Tera mera ki rishta”. It is also one of the costliest Punjabi movies produced in India," he added.

The lavishly-produced “Tera mera ki rishta” explores a familiar issue confronting Indians living abroad - a clash of cultures with Indians from "back home".

Jimmy said: "Tera mera ki rishta" is hoping to change the image of the Punjabi cinema with its sombre and mature take on the old romantic formula matching a beautiful, virtuous village girl from Punjab with a spoiled foreign Punjabi guy or NRIs.

In the movie, Jimmy plays a hip Canadian who has an eye for girls. A fun-loving, adventurous guy, he is into fast cars and women. He meets Kulraj Randhawa at a wedding. This traditional girl from Amritsar represents the Indian culture from which he has drifted and their blossoming romance throws up new challenges.

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First honey train flagged off
Our Correspondent

Doraha, April 18
The first train carrying 90 containers of honey was flagged off on Thursday from the Container Corporation of India, Dhandari Kalan, Ludhiana, by Jagjit Singh Kapoor, chairman and managing director Little Bee Impex.

Singh claimed that the honey-loaded train was not only an incredible achievement in the company’s history but also in the food sector world over.

He said the company had successfully survived recession and achieved a growth rate of 64 per cent. He added that this was a glorious moment for his team, especially when the export growth was down by almost 31 per cent.

He also stated that in the current year, the company’s performance would not only boost the rural bee-keeping industry at the grassroot level but also help the government earn foreign exchange revenue.

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Town sans vet doctor for nine months
Lovleen Bains

Sahnewal, April 18
Veterinary services are being hit in this town due to the absence of any veterinary doctor for the past nine months. Cattle of Sahnewal thus seem to be left entirely at the mercy of God, especially after the retirement of doctor here in August last year.

Cattle owners are at the receiving end as their cattle suffer in the absence of proper medical supervision. They are left in the lurch as there are scarce private doctors. They have to run from pillar to post once their animal falls sick.

To make the matter worse, the farmers allege that since their is no doctor to conduct even the post-mortem examination on the animal, the insurance claim is either delayed or cannot be availed by the owner.

According to a vet, "As the veterinary doctor is not available, the timely immunisation, particularly against the occurrence of a particular foot and mouth disease (FMD), has been seriously interrupted which can adversely affect an animals' immune system and leads to disease outbreak any time in the coming months."

Meanwhile the Director, Animal Husbandry Department, said since the veterinary doctor posted at Sahnewal retired in August, the post is lying vacant. "In such a situation, it becomes difficult to conduct even the routine activities, leaving aside the handling of emergency cases. The shortage of the staff is there at many other places too but we too are helpless in this regard”, the officer added.

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Recession a boon for gold-plated jewellery
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 18
Global economic meltdown has proved as a blessing in disguise for some. While ever increasing prices of gold is giving a tough time to jewellers, those dealing in gold plated and semi-precious jewellery are having a ball.

A spokesperson of the Art Karat, who is holding a four-day exhibition in the city, said their sales had grown 50 per cent from the last year.

“Since gold is becoming out of the reach of general public, they are switching to gold-plated jewellery.

Our jewellery is pure silver coated with gold, set with precious stones and made in real kundan. The jewellery is affordable but yet classy,” he added.

The Art Karat has brought its latest collection “Parampara” in the city. The collection features jewels that revive traditional values and celebrates beginning of new relationships.

At present Victorian and traditional jewellery are in vogue and the latest trend that has been seen these days is youngsters going in for traditional jewellery.

“The youngsters today like to mix and match so they are wearing traditional jewellery with western outfits,” the spokesperson added.

The Art Karat jewellery collection boasts of wide variety of both classic and contemporary designs.

Their collection has derived its inspiration from many sources among them are temples of Khajuraho, kingdoms of Rajasthan, Mughals and everlasting era of Indian cinema.

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From Schools
Declamation contest on social evils
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 18
The Health Club with the help of humanities forum of GMT Public School organised a declamation contest on social evils here today.

Anita Nanda, chairperson of anti-drugs and crime society, presided over the function. About 15 other members of the society were also present on the occasion.

Students presented classical dance on the function. They spoke on evils prevailing in the society, including female foeticide, drug addiction and dowry system.

Directors of the school Kashmir Singh Thind and Jasbir Singh Thind appreciated the efforts of the society for their initiative against the social evils.

Principal Amarjeet Dhaliwal honoured Anita Nanda along with other members of the society. Nanda in her speech encouraged the students to fight against the social evils.

Welcome party

Atam Devki Niketan, Kidwai Nagar, organised a welcome party for the students and also celebrated famous festival of Punjab Baisakhi recently.

A colourful programme depicting culture of Punjab was presented by the students in which Punjabi mela and giddha were the main attractions. Boys of senior class also presented bhangra and made everyone to dance along with them.

Principal Mridhu Ablash welcomed all students in the new session and appreciated the students’ participation. Director Kamla Jain congratulated the winner of Master Fresher Yash and Miss Fresher Mehak and distributed various gifts among the students.

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Corporal Punishment
‘Handle kids with care’
Manav Ghuman
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 18
The death of 11-year-old Shanno Khan of MCD Girls Primary School, Delhi, who died due to corporal punishment yesterday, has once again raised the question of the punishment being given in schools. Though the CBSE has given strict directions against the corporal punishment, it still goes unchecked.

Paramjit Kaur, principal of BCM Public School, said she failed to understand why teachers had to become so harsh with students. "The students today are so gentle and understand the things very easily so there is no need to punish them. Children can be best taught with love and affection," she added.

Jaswinder Kaur, teacher, added that teaching was a noble profession and one needed to be patient to deal with the kids. "Sometimes teachers vent out their frustrations on the students. A teacher should be a balanced person and know to control his or her moods. I fail to understand how one can be so rude to such loving kids. Shanno will never come back and in past also, many such incidents have taken place but nobody learns a lesson. Strict action need to be taken and such teaches should be sent to jail," she added.

Rajiv, a city based psychiatrist, said giving corporal punishment to the kids was a serious issue which might hinder their mental growth. "A child comes away from home and spends maximum hours of the day at school and if he/she does not get a friendly atmosphere, how will he/she learn new things. They will develop a fear in their minds for school and teachers," he added.

Hearing such incidents only develop fear in parents' minds. Children are sent to school to learn new things in life and how will they march forward in life if teachers treat them so cruelly. "I am lucky to never receive any such complaints from my kids. Teachers should also be given regular lessons in stress control," added Sunita, a parent.

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Arya don to present paper in UK
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 18
Dr Sunil Khosla, a senior lecturer in the postgraduate department of political science, Arya College, has been selected to present a paper in the 6th Annual World Conference on "Eurocentrism in political theory" from September 2 to September 4 at Manchester Metropolitan University, Manchester, United Kingdom.

According to a press note issued today, the conference seeks to encourage the attempt to identify the problems of Eurocentrism in political theory.

The focus of the paper will be on the exposition of the biggest challenge of the contemporary times and its relation with the inner drive of the citizenry to face the challenges of the socio-economic transformation and emancipation as well as new democratic set up which would be different from the one prevailing in the western world because imitation of the west was not the solution to our key issues.

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Books given to needy students
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, April 18
The Book Bank Society of Jagraon today conducted its 23rd books, notebooks, scholarship and awards giving function today.

The function was organised at Lajpat Rai Kanya Senior Secondary School in collaboration with the social organisations of the city.

The chief guest of the function was SDM Mukand Singh, which was presided over by NK Babbar of NPL, Delhi, and SMO Dr HK Singla was the guest of honour.

The society gave books and notebooks to 500 needy students from 25 schools of the area while 10 students were given scholarships of Rs 1,000 each.

As many as 13 students who secured top positions in the universities and boards were given the prestigious awards of shining star while 130 topper students of the local schools were given the gems of Jagraon award.

Mohit Verma was given the award for his overall performance in academics and curricular activities.

Himmat Verma, president of the society, said they had a provision of library from which the needy students were issued books for the whole year.

Sudershan Sharma said they would continue to extend this service to the students with the active support of the social organisations of the area.

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‘Better performance, ultimate aim in life’
Anshu Seth
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 18
Having taken the Indian movie buffs by surprise, Vansh Bhardwaj, the lead hero of “Videsh, Heaven on Earth” has his feet firm on ground as he terms better performance his ultimate goal in life.

"Sachin Tendulkar is my inspiration in life who has thrived on his performance and I being a cricketer too feels the same," added Vansh.

The young actor is in the city to perform in the play “The Suit” directed by Neelam Mann Singh, which will be staged today in Guru Nanak Dev Bhawan under the aegis of Media Artistes Group.

Success certainly has added to the humility of this young alumni of the department of Indian theatre, Panjab University, Chandigarh, as was evident from his enthusiasm to set up the stage for the evening play.

Speaking about his future stint in Hindi cinema, Vansh said he had his hopes banked on his next release “What's cooking Stella”, a Deepa Mehta production.

"I was lucky to get a chance to work with actors like Seema Biswas, Lisa Ray and Shreya Saran and experience during the whole shoot was commendable,” stated Vansh.

Showing signs of acumen and maturity, this young artiste aims to get maximum exposure through his work in parallel as well as popular cinema.

Further expressing his desire to work with the new genre directors in Hindi cinema, Vansh termed them as content directors who he said were working in accord with the political, social and conventionally modern set up in India.

"I am looking forward to work with directors like Farhan Akhtar, Neeraj Pandey, Sanjay Leela Bhansali and Anuraag Kashyap," Vansh went on to add.

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ARSH clinics a hit among youth
Anshu Seth
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 18
National health statistics have revealed that about 1.5 million girls below 15 years are married and conceive before the age of 18 in India, which has led to an alarming increase in the maternal and infant mortality rate.

Taking a serious note of these statistics, the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare launched nationwide Adolescent Reproductive and Sexual Reproductive Health (ARSH) services.

The rural youth of Ludhiana took a step forward as 7,218 boys and girls (including married minors) visited 81 ARSH clinics between March, 2008, and March,2009.

These clinics have been established under the National Rural Health Mission (NRHM) in civil hospitals, community health centres, primary health centres and sub-centres, wherein the specially appointed staff provide counselling regarding the physical and psychological problems of adolescents.

A 10+2 female student, while on a visit to ARSH clinic in Sudhar, stated, “I was reluctant to share my problem at first, but taking note of the ‘confidentiality’ observed by the counsellor, I have managed to overcome my predicament to a large extent.”

ARSH is one of the key technical programmes initiated under the National Rural Health Mission as the adolescent population of India is 225 million and nearly 35 per cent of HIV infections occur in the age group between 15- 24 years (a majority of them are infected through unprotected sex).

At the ARSH clinics, which are operational twice a week at civil hospitals and community health centres followed by once a week assistance at primary health centres and sub-centres, the staff are carrying out promotive, preventive, curative, referral and outreach services.

District family welfare officer Dr Reena Sandhu said there was a need to create awareness and supportive environment for adolescents.

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Wheat on 11 acres gutted
Our Correspondent

Khamano, April 18
About 11-acre standing wheat crop at Manderan and Khamano was gutted in a devastating fire.

According to information, farmers were harvesting the crop in the fields when fire suddenly broke out and it spread in other fields also.

The people working in the fields gathered and tried to douse the fire. Several villagers also reached the scene and took part in rescue work.

Fire brigade was also informed but the fire was controlled before reaching of fire brigade.

The wheat belongs to Bhag Singh, Harchand Singh and Pargat Singh. The cause of fire could not be ascertained.

The police and civil officers, including DSP Khamano Anil Kumar, SHO Ashok Sharma, naib tehsildar Manjeet Singh, and PSEB SDO Harinderjit Singh Bhangu reached the spot to access the damage and to look after rescue operations.

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Call emergency meeting: BoM member
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 18
Avtar Singh Dhindsa, a member of the Board of Management (BoM) of Punjab Agricultural University, has asked VC Dr MS Kang either to withdraw the letter sent to former or call an emergency meeting of the BoM to discuss the issue in detail.

Dhindsa confirmed to have sent the letter to the VC. He said, "This is a serious and sensitive matter. Dr Kang has sought my apology as I have raised questions in the meeting. He should either withdraw the letter or call the emergency meeting to discuss the matter in front of everyone," said Dhindsa.

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At the Crossroads
Who will save the city?

Ludhiana, April 18
Ludhiana, at present, is in the throes of a revolutionary process. It seems to be a question of now or never. The new generation is waiting to step in at the appropriate time.

Corruption in every form is the main problem that begs solution. In the present day society, bribery is a minor part of corrupt practices. The real issue is moral corruption or utter disregard of moral values. Morally upright persons are in demand but the supply is very short. There is a vacuum that has sucked in all sorts of hypocrites, double dealers, sycophants, time-servers and seekers of instant fame.

During the election time, the situation has deteriorated further. All sorts of insinuations are being hurled at each other, in the process ignoring decorum, dignity and propriety.

At this juncture, the question arises, who will save the city?

Greek dramatist Aristophanes in his play, ‘The Frogs’, had posed the same question during the 5th century B.C. Athens was threatened from all sides by enemy in January 405 B.C. The elders gathered to find ways of saving their city. During the discussion, it transpired that all great poets of the city had died and there was no one of their intellectual calibre who could suggest a solution.

At last, they approached Dionysus, the patron god of drama, to bring back Euripides who had died recently.

The other two eminent poets, Aeschylus and Sophocles, had died earlier.

Dionysus went to the underworld to persuade Euripides to come back to save the city. He was ready to go back to the world for a noble cause. Aeschylus, who had died 50 years ago, also laid down his claim for going back to the city for saving it from the enemy. But Sophocles did not express a desire to contest the claims of Aeschylus or Euripides. So, the arena was left open for the two contestants to prove their worth.

Dionysus suggested that the best way to judge the worth of these two poets was to weigh their poetry on a scale. So a huge scale was lowered on the stage and both the poets stood on its either side.

In the long debate, both of them quoted poetic lines from their tragedies into the pans.

Dionysus weighed the quotations and decided to take the one who gave the best advice on public policy. So he asked them questions about affairs in Athens. Aeschylus was selected on the basis of his high ethical demeanour and trustworthy conduct.

In the light of this play, which was staged 25 centuries ago, it can be assumed that the scale of judgement is the same even now. It is not the verbosity of language that sways the hearts of the citizens but the sincerity of purpose that counts.

Ludhiana at present is in a piquant situation. There needs to be a drive for ensuring bright future of the younger generation, eradicating malpractices, eliminating air and water pollution, removing traffic bottlenecks, punishing land sharks, dismantling ugly structures, bringing down crime graph, eradicating drug addiction, making the city clean and green, besides giving due recognition to the deserving individuals in all fields of activity.

At this historic point of time, when great expectations have occupied the minds of citizens, Dionysus is eager to pronounce his judgement on the stage of Ludhiana. — NS Tasneem

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3 booked for stealing batteries
Our Correspondent

Mullanpur Dakha, April 18
The Humbran police on Thursday booked three men for stealing old and new batteries from a mobile company’s tower. The theft occurred six months ago.

Arvind Sabharwal of the Front Line group, Panchkula, lodged a complaint against the three men, Sukhwinder Singh of Purain village, Amarjit Singh and Jaswant Singh.

According to the complaint, the accused had stolen 24 old batteries worth Rs 75 lakh and 12 new batteries worth Rs 1.25 lakh about six months ago.

The police recovered the stolen goods from the possession of the three but no arrest was made.

The accused said the complainant was their employer and the batteries were in their custody because it was part of their job to take care of the material. Later, when they shifted the job, they requested the complainant to take the custody of the batteries.

SHO Harcharan Singh Cheema said the police was still in the process of verifying the facts and would take further action only after the completion of the inquiry.

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House burgled at knifepoint
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, April 18
Around 12 unidentified persons equipped with sharp edged weapons have burgled Gurcharan Singh’s house yesterday.

The incident occurred around 1.30 am when he along with his family was sleeping at his house.

At the knifepoint they made them hostages and decamped with Rs 12,000, gold ornaments and two mobile sets worth Rs 20,000.

The police has registered a case against the unidentified thieves.

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