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Man shoots at wife’s paramour
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 1
A man pumped four bullets into the alleged paramour of his wife when he spotted them standing in a deserted street at Moti Nagar here today.

The incident took place in the afternoon when the victim Pardeep Kumar (35), a resident of Kirpal Nagar, was standing in a street situated behind the Moti Nagar police post with a woman who stays in Sector 32.

According to an eyewitness, Arvind Verma, alias Bobby, husband of the woman, came in the car and fired two shots at Pardeep, however, both shots missed the target. One hit the shutter of a shop while the other hit the door of a house.

Arvind then got down from the car and pumped four bullets into Pardeep from close range. The first hit him in the head, while the other three hit the neck, shoulder and ribs. He was taken to hospital by the woman and area residents.

Pardeep Singh, SHO of Focal Point, said the police was conducting raids at various parts to nab the accused.

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Living in fear of nature’s fury
Kanchan Vasdev
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 1
Their previous generations here underwent sleepless nights every monsoon. After centuries of living alongside the Dhussi embankment lining the Sutlej, the present generation continues to get anxiety-related sleeplessness every monsoon due to fear of floods.

Despite living in an era of advancement in technology and science, scores of people inhabiting villages alongside the river continue to suffer on account of the vulnerable bandh lining the water body.

Rivers have been tamed, dams built, but nothing has been done to help the plight of thousands of villagers in the Bet area of the district, where Sutlej fury has devastated them several times. The weak bandh at officially declared sensitive sites causes a flood fear every time it rains heavily.

“We have seen 14 parliaments till date. Representatives visited us. We aired our problems. They heard us compassionately and promised to get back. They were elected, but never came back,” said Gurjant Singh, a villager.

The state government released crores for the bandh several times. Except a few embankments, nothing was done on the ground.

A Tribune team met villagers near official vulnerable sites at Dhulewal, Issapur, Sainsowal, Banhewal and Ghumana, Machhiwara and Madhepura. They all had only floods issue on their mind.

Similar views were aired by villagers of Sherewal, Kannian, Gidderwindi and Chotti Masianh that were hit by floods in 1978, 1988 and 1993.

Other villages, including Bonker Dogran, Khaira Bet, Gor Sianh Hakam Khan, Bholewal and Kharak, too tasted the fury of floods several times.

“Had the entire money released all these years been utilised honestly, they would have constructed a concrete structure. The river water was channelised so many decades ago. Still we face floods,” said a villager

“Officials come when the water rises and ‘netas’ come when it is election time,” said Dilbagh Singh of Dhulewal village.

He said during the last floods all these villages were washed away. They suffered losses of lakhs, besides losing many lives.

“Nothing has changed for us. We want a permanent solution now,” said Deva Singh, former sarpanch of Issapur village.

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Admn gets ready to make Sutlej safe
Sanjeev Singh Bariana
|Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 1
Initiating timely action more than a month before monsoon hits the state, the district administration has launched a preventive programme in plugging loopholes on sensitive points along the Sutlej to prevent flooding in the district. The development gains greater importance in the wake of the Dhussi bundh at Sidhwan Bet nearly giving away last monsoon. At least 40 villages would have been flooded, but for a last-minute manual wonder in plugging the gap.

Deputy Commissioner Vikas Garg called a meeting of officers today to have a well-chalked out programme in place before the rains.

The DC would be visiting flood-prone areas, particularly in the Sidhwan Bet, later this week and a detailed action plan would be put in place soon after.

Not just the Dhussi bundh, the rains last year saw similar situations at various points in and around the city, where flood waters could have created problems.

The areas adjoining the Dhussi bundh were saved from a near-flood following the last-minute entry by the civil administration. At least 40 villages, including Manieawal, Ballipur Khurd, Ghamnewal, Ballipur Kalan, Bhatha Dhuan and Talwandi Khurd villages, would have been flooded.

Rainwater posed threat near the Mattewara seed farm in Ludhiana East. Certain trouble spots were identified near Samrala and Ludhiana West, as well. Sensitive areas in the district included Dhulewal, Issapur, Ghumana, Kasabad and Khaira Bet.

During the floods last year, whirlpools in the Bet area looked dangerous. These tended to erode the sand at the bottom of the river, which could lead to the collapse of the embankment.

Last year, the teams had chopped off trees to fill the banks. The affected bank was filled by erecting a sandbag wall to divert the flow of water in the 250-yard area, which had the highest potential of a breach. A little delay would have spelt a calamity.

Villagers, however, are not satisfied with mere sandbags because gushing waters could erode even sand banks. Officials on the job conceded that sandbag structures were only a temporary solution.

A senior official of the administration said: “The drainage department had done a very poor job last year. In fact, there were no visible signs of any groundwork throughout the year earlier. We did point out the issue afterwards and expect improvement this year.”

The officer said the stone structures erected along the banks were held together by wires. Certain mischievous elements had removed the wires, probably to sell it, and in the process had harmed the embankment.

Flood-prone areas to be filmed

The administration has decided to carry out videography of flood-prone areas in the district, particularly around the Sutlej. The flood-prone areas would be filmed before and after repair work to be carried out in the next couple of weeks.

The DC said the administration had forwarded a proposal worth Rs 4.77 crore for the upgradation of the flood relief mechanism in the district to the state government.

The area SDMs had been asked to make a round of their respective areas and submit a factual report which would be followed up by the DC personally. The office of the Civil Surgeon would be asked to constitute teams in advance and submit a report to the office about its preparedness. The animal husbandry department had also been asked to carry out a similar exercise.

The DC has asked police teams to visit river banks regularly and keep the administration informed about loose ends.

The SDMs concerned have been asked to make arrangements for temporary camps at government schools in the area for emergency situations.

The DC has also asked the SDMs to keep a list and contact numbers of JCB machine operators, besides NGOs and divers. Joint Commissioner BK Gupta said the 14-km stretch of the Budha Nullah within the city limits would be cleared this month.

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Notices served on brick-kiln owners
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 1
Taking note of complaints filed by certain customers, the District Food and Supplies Department here has started cracking its whip on brick-kiln owners.

The department has sent show-cause notices to about 18 brick-kiln owners. Though department officials claim that there has not been gross violation of specifications, but at the same time, they maintain that that routine inspections were necessary to check irregularities in the business.

HS Mokha, District Food and Supplies Controller (DFSC), told The Tribune that show-cause notices were served on owners as some irregularities were found. There was no gross violation of specifications. Those who have not maintained their records properly or the ones who have not mentioned the classification on bricks etc have been served with the notices. He added that those found with irregularities would be fined.

Customers have been complaining about under-sized bricks, which do not match with the specifications of the government’s prescribed size. As per norms, the size of the brick should be 9x4.5x3 inches in length, breadth and height, respectively.

But unauthorised bricks being sold by certain brick-kiln owners were found shorter in breadth and height. Undersized bricks mean that the customer would require more bricks and even the cost of cement and sand would go up with the increase in the number of layers of bricks.

The general secretary of the Ludhiana District Brick-Kiln Owners Association, Sarabjit Singh Dhillon, admitted that such practice was prevalent in the city. But he also held customers responsible for it to some extent.

He said: “A majority of customers are not bothered about the size. They should realise that if they prefer bricks at lower prices, which are generally undersized, more bricks would be required. People are selling bricks at lower prices of Rs 2,600 per thousand. But there are others who sell good quality bricks at the rate of even Rs 2,800/Rs 3,000 per thousand. But customers prefer to buy at lower prices, so the owners compromise with the quality.”

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Arrival of sant’s body
Residents fear another backlash
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 1
Queries about the arrival of the body of slain Sant Ramanand of the Sachkhand sect have become the talk of the town.

It does not matter which class people belong to, the issue is being discussed everywhere.

As the state had seen protests for three days after Sant Ramanand and Sant Naranjan Das were shot at in Vienna, there is a sense of fear among residents that the arrival of the body could lead to another round of clashes.

As there is uncertainty about the arrival of the body, the residents are confused about their travel plans. Travellers, especially pilgrims to Amritsar, are either postponing their visit or undertaking one-day visits.

People travelling towards Delhi are also wary as they fear that they might get caught in some tense situation.

Hardev Singh, a resident, said: “I have asked my son to ensure when the body is arriving as I do not know how the situation will turn once the body is brought here.”

“No one knows how the followers would react if the body is taken by road. But one thing is sure, I would close my shop on that day as earlier the administration had failed to provide security to us when it was required,” Munish Kumar, a businessman, said.

Anirudh, a student of KVM School, said: “I heard my grandfather talk about it. My mother was also discussing it over the phone with some relatives and even teaches are discussing the matter. This has made me curious.”

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Unruly mob kept city on ransom

It turned out to be a nightmare for residents after a curfew had to be imposed throughout the city after followers of a religious sect went on rampage to protest against killing of their guru in Vienna (Austria) last week. As the helpless administration acted like a mute witness the day violence erupted, so called followers of the sect went around damaging private and government property, setting fire to vehicles, shops and other commercial establishments. For a few days, the markets, banks, government offices and educational institutes remained closed, train traffic came to a halt and buses remained off the road. Lakhs of people in the city, like all other major towns in Punjab suffered silently as the unruly mob held them as well as the law enforcement agencies on ransom. There could be no opinion that the Vienna incident was most unfortunate, and ought to be condemned in strong words. But why should others be made to pay for the acts of a few mad persons is the question no body has an answer to.

Rat race

Beware members organising kitties at the leading food joints or restaurants. At one of the parties organised recently at a leading restaurant in the city, a “rat-race” took place among the members. One of the members sitting on a sofa found that something was disturbing her continuously. It turned out to be a rat. As she screamed, the rat jumped on another member’s lap. As she tried to throw it away with her purse, the rat was on the table. And then, there was a “race” among the members. The members started screaming at waiters and attendants. They calmed down only when the manager tendered an apology. Another table with chairs on both sides was laid for them so that their kitty was not hampered.

Age-old delicacy

Taste buds rule over the logic of unsafe water in ‘golgappas’, the age-old delight. At least the rush on the eatable stalls, all over the city, particularly, in the evenings say so. The city witnessed at least one incident of several stomach ailments after gulping ‘golgappa’ waters, at a particular spot, recently. the ‘rehris’ and stalls are witnessing the normal rush these days. Standing near a stall in Sarabha Nagar, a woman asked a vendor, “ Where do you get the water for the ‘golgappas’? Is it from a fresh water tap or storage tanks? You should serve us distilled waters only? I will talk to your owner and the administration should also have the officers do the regular rounds of the bazaars”. A college-going girl spoke into the ears of her friend “what’s her problem? Have it if she wants it or she should shut up. We are having “golgappas” from the past 8-10 years and all places in the city. Except for an upset stomach, couple of times, the taste of the ‘golgappa’ is too hard to resist”.

Compliment

Three young women reporters were surprised when a student of Punjab Agriculture University (PAU) approached them with a survey on students that he was doing. Quite apparently, the young lad approached the girls, engaged in an animated conversation over a cup of piping hot evening tea on the varsity campus, thinking that the three were university students. When he was politely informed by one of the girls that they were not students, the youth, with a surprised expression on his face, said, “You all look like young college girls. It is hard to believe that you are journalists.” The out-of-the-blue “compliment” brought smiles on the faces of the girls.

Siesta

Summer days are the lazy days and one cannot help falling asleep in the hot and humid afternoons. While those in their houses have the comfort of their cozy beds but those working in offices have a tough time controlling their sleep. But sometimes the sleep overpowers and one is unable to control the afternoon nap. It seems to be the case with the person who is having an afternoon sleep on his motorbike. Unaware of the whole world he is having a comfortable sleep and made the bag his pillow. He is not even bothered that someone can probably steal his bag or other valuables; he is enjoying his sleep on his motorbike.

Cultural shock

Honking is indeed a ‘cultural shock ‘ not only for the foreign tourists coming to Ludhiana but also to the NRIs visiting their native city after a long time. A UK national was awestruck on hearing the pressure horns as he traveled by a cab in the interior parts of the city. But there was no limit to his surprise as he observed the scene at traffic signals where the honking was at its height even in the early morning hours when the traffic is very less. Perturbed over the whole scenario, the tourists could hold back his curiosity and asked the can driver the ‘reason’ behind continued honking. The driver in order to explain it better stopped the cab in a corner of the traffic lights and pointed towards the speeding SUVs and motor bikes jumping the red lights adding, “Sir, people have little choice as they have to use the horns even while crossing the traffic signals as these ‘phukra’ (show off) boys don’t pay heed to the red lights and hit the people in their vehicles. In order to save themselves from being hit people have to use horns even when they are crossing from red lights.” The explanation only added to the confusion of the UK national as was evident from the perplexed expression on his face.

Woman power

Innovation is the way of life. Use of women powers, in a changed perspective, was seen in an interesting light at a nationalised bank on Monday. A lady stood in a queue to make deposits of her husband’s financial dealing. He too was standing right next to her. The tight space at the bank also had two children of the lady and also a servant carrying the little one. A bank employee said, “the queue of the ladies today is longer than men and it is growing longer with each passing day. This has started ever since we started a separate queue for women and the practice has been started in a number of other banks as well. This lady, in particular, will make the bank deposits and then she has to reach her kitty party.

Contributed by Kuldip Bhatia, Shivani Bhakoo, Sanjeev Singh Bariana, Charu Chhibber, Manav Ghuman, Anshu and Mahesh Sharma

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Chamber seeks peak load sanctions 
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 1
The Chamber of Industrial and Commercial Undertakings (CICU) has requested the PSEB chairman to allow new applicants also to avail the peak load sanctions.

General secretary of the association, Avtar Singh, in a press note issued here today said that it was a welcome step that the PSEB had extended the peak load exemption to those who had taken peak load exemption permanently or on temporary basis till these exemptions were allowed by officials.

He said, “ Industrial production will suffer if new applicants were not given sanction at the earliest. Keeping in mind their losses, board should provide the peak load sanction to the new applicants as well”, he added.

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Doctors seek hike in budgetary allocation on health
To meet Pranab Mukherjee
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 1
A deputation of the Indian Doctors for Peace and Development (IDPD) will meet Union Minister for Finance Pranab Mukherjee for seeking hike in the budgetary allocation on health. Referring to the views that emerged at a national consultation on the National Health Bill- 2009, which was circulated by the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare for public opinion, held at India International Centre, New Delhi, yesterday, the organisation emphasised on the need to hike budgetary allocation on health.

According to doctors, it is a matter of concern that even after 62 years of Independence and with one of the fastest growing economy, India has infant and maternal mortality rates of 56 and 540, respectively, which is worst than Bangladesh. The experts dwelled on the need to have a minimum of 3 per cent expenditure on public health whereas the present expenditure is just 1.8 per cent.

The budgetary allocations for health need to be increased for providing bare minimum medicare for the people. Moreover, the health needs can’t be isolated from the needs of food, housing, water, education and sanitation, the office-bearers added.

Its members feel that the Bill has some positive overtones but it falls short in taking care of the safeguards for the health providers. Therefore, it was decided to form a core group which will formulate the amendments to the Bill in the light of discussion on the issue of rights of user and health provider and submit the same to the Union Health Minister demanding the passage of the bill in the Parliament with amendments suggested by the IDPD.

Doctors and medical students from Punjab, Delhi, Bihar, Tamil Nadu, Maharashtra, West Bengal and Manipur attended the consultation. Gurminder Singh, advocate, Punjab and Haryana High Court, Chandigarh, and Anshul Raj, advocate, Supreme Court of India, gave presentations on the legal aspects of the Bill.

Prominent among those who attended the meet are Dr AS Padda, principal, Punjab Institute of Medical Sciences, Jalandhar, Dr GPI, principal, Adesh Medical College, Bathinda, Dr Pratibha Worlikar, Head, Department of Pharmacology, DY Patil Medical College, Pune and Dr M Nara Singh from Manipur. 

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Optional vaccines beyond reach of poor
Anshu Seth
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 1
The non-availability of optional vaccinations in government hospitals for children up to the age of five years has become a matter of concern for parents who cannot afford to get their children vaccinated in private hospitals.

Children are getting vaccinated for DPT, polio, BCG, measles and hepatitis B under the national immunisation programmes at government hospitals, health centres and dispensaries, but they are deprived of the latest vaccines that are administered for prevention against a large number of diseases.

Unlike private hospitals where doctors administer improved injectable polio vaccine and painless DPT, government hospitals are still administering oral polio and old DPT vaccines.

Children born in the upper middle class and affluent families get vaccinated for chicken pox, hepatitis A, pneumonia, influenza and various other diseases.

Optional vaccines are given to children after consultation in the private health sector. The latest optional vaccination is against cervical cancer.

The cost of these vaccines varies from Rs 1,000 to Rs 2,500, which is beyond the reach of the economically weaker section.

A senior doctor, while stressing the need for preventive vaccines, said the central government had tied up with Global Alliance for Vaccines and Immunisation (GAVI) which would provide pneumococal, the preventive vaccine against pneumonia, to India from 2011.

Dr Rajinder Ghulati, a paediatrician, said H infleunza type B vaccine was important for children as it could bring down 4 per cent deaths in children under five years of age.

Poor parents could afford to get their children vaccinated against H Infleunza type B as each one of the total four doses cost around Rs 500 in private hospitals.

However, when asked about the success rate of optional vaccines, he said it varied from vaccine to vaccine, but the vaccines were not 100 per cent effective. These played a significant role in curtailing the severity of the problem, he added.

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Tobacco can cause cancer: Doctor 
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 1
Dr Manish Munjal, ENT professor, DMCH, while delivering a lecture on the rise in addiction among teenagers, said more and more were getting hooked to tobacco products due to advertisements or seeing adults smoking or chewing it.

In addition to highly addictive nicotine, cigarette smoke contains over 4,000 chemicals, which includes arsenic (rat poison), ammonia (poisonous; present in many household cleaners), acetone (fingernail-polish remover), benzene (industrial solvent), carbon monoxide (exhaust-pipe fumes), cadmium (used in rechargeable batteries), cyanide (poison used in gas chambers) and various others.

There are more than 50 cancer-causing agents (carcinogens) and, of course, nicotine that isn’t just addictive but is a natural insecticide (it protects the tobacco plant from bugs) and in its pure form is a poisonous substance.

Dr Munjal elaborated that manifestations in the ear, nose throat were noted in chronic users of cigarettes, beedis, pan parag, zarda and beetal nut.

Passive smokers feel the irritation of the lining of the middle part of the ear causing buildup of secretions behind the eardrums causing a hearing impairment. Use of tobacco leads to changes in cells that are either exposed to smoke or come in direct contact with chewable tobacco. This leads to not one but second and third site cancers. That is, cancerous conversion of tissue may take place in the lips, mouth, voice box, lungs and the food pipe at the same time. Those who chew tobacco are at high risk for gum and cheek lesions that can lead to cancer. Alcohol consumption is another risk factor, he added. 

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Ill-effects of tobacco use discussed
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 1
The College of Nursing at the DMCH organised a seminar on the occasion of World No Tobacco Day.

The theme this year is tobacco health warnings, with special emphasis on picture warnings that have been shown to be effective in making people aware of the health risks of tobacco abuse and convincing them to quit.

Monitoring the use of tobacco, prevention, offering help to quit tobacco use, warning people about the dangers of tobacco, enforcing bans on tobacco advertisements and raising taxes on tobacco were emphasised during the seminar.

Nidhi Sagar, a lecturer at the College of Nursing, Dr Jasbir Kaur, principal of the college, among several other experts, held a detailed discussion on several topics like introduction to World No Tobacco Day.

Suresh K Sharma, vice-principal of the college, enforced that the role of health professionals was vital in the continuous sensitisation of the public, especially adolescents and young adults, to reduce the prevalence of smoking and deleterious effects on health.

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Keep vigil against mealy bug attack
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 1
The mealy bug population builds up on weeds, particularly grass on wastelands, irrigation channels, roads, etc in the cotton belt of the state.

This was stated by entomology senior extension specialist Jagdev Singh Kolar, who added that vigil against mealy bug attack on weeds was needed.

Dr Kolar said, “When the climate is favourable for the build-up of the pest, it multiplies quickly.”

The other weeds where population of pest developed included peeli buti, tandla, puth kanda, dhatura and itsit.

He said manual removal of weed was required wherever the pest was noticed. He added that the uprooted weeds carrying mealy bug should not be thrown in cotton fields and water channels, instead these should be buried. 

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Mosquito-borne Diseases
Health dept sets up control room 
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, June 1
Anti-larva staff of the health department today took out a rally to make people aware of the preventive steps to be taken for controlling mosquito-borne diseases. Civil surgeon Dr SP Sharma flagged off the rally. Dr SS Dhir, district health officer, Dr GP Mangla, district epidemiologist, and Satish Sachdeva, district mass media and information officer, besides others were present on the occasion.

The employees, carrying mottos and placards to highlight the preventive steps to be taken against mosquito breeding, went to localities like Dandi Swami, New Kundanpuri, Deep Nagar, Prem Nagar and Bindraban Road.

The rally culminated at government dispensary in Kundanpuri.

The volunteers advised the residents to change water in room coolers every week, avoid stagnation of water around and inside their houses to break the malarial breeding cycle, wear full-sleeve shirts, trousers, use mosquito-repellents or anti-mosquito sprays and seek immediate medical advise in cases of fever.

The health departments had set up a control room at the district headquarters (phone No 2444193) where cases of fever, vomiting and diarrhoea could be reported, Dr Sharma added.

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Tips for rodent management
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 1
Rodents are serious pests responsible for huge losses. Discussing the menace, head, department of zoology, Dr Ranjit Kaur Parshad, said rodents lived in the burrows and caused damage to the crop at different stages.

She said the predominant species of rodents found in dry, less irrigated areas of cotton were the Indian gerbil and Tatera indica. For control, different methods should be applied in integrated manner at different stages of the crop and if rodents had already attacked the crop, the first measure should be the use of rodenticide.

She added that at the seedling stage of the crop, burrows could be easily located in the peripheral areas as well as within the field and suggested that at this stage, burrow baiting should be done either with 2 per cent zinc phosphide or 0.005 per cent bromidiolone bait.

All burrows should be closed in the evening and in reopened burrows on the next day, a paper boat containing 10 grams of bait should be inserted six inches deep in the burrow. She cautioned that water should not be added in the zinc phosphide bait and fresh bait should be used. During maturity stage, 10 gram of poison bait on a piece of paper should be kept at 40 baiting points per acre on dry sites and inside the crop throughout covering runways and activity sites of the rats. She said pre-baiting for two-three days with plain bait (without poison) was essential before zinc phosphide baiting in the crop.

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World Net Express fails to take off
Manav Ghuman
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 1
A revolutionary express service, World Net Express (WNX) by India Post and Deutsche Post World Net (DPWN) scheduled to kickstart today, failed to take off.

The coming together of India Post and the DPWN is a new initiative undertaken by the Department of Posts to bring world class express services to every nook and corner of the country. The service failed to launch in the city as DHL, the company engaged for services, failed to provide the code for the city.

An official from the head post office at Bharat Nagar said it aimed to offer customers of India Post a truly world class shipping experience from post offices spread across every state in India.

WNX deliveries would be backed by the DPWN’s extensive network of 350 aircraft, 1,30,000 vehicles and over 5,00,000 employees that form a part of the DPWN network in over 220 countries.

Sources in the department revealed that the DHL, the company engaged for delivering comprehensive international mail, express and logistics services, had failed to allot a city code which hampered the starting of the services. “We are constantly in touch with company officials in Mumbai and hope to receive the code by the evening or tomorrow morning, after which the WNX would be initiated,” the sources said.

Kulwant Singh, a customer, was disappointed at the delay in the start of the service. “The service is a kind of upgradation of the speed post service. It is already operational in Chandigarh and I was expecting it to start in the city today. Post is delivered in lesser time and parcels are handed over in good condition through WNX. I hope the service is started at the earliest,” he said.

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Academy to honour PAU scientist 
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 1
The Indian National Science Academy (INSA) has decided to confer Prof Krishna Sahai Bilgrami Memorial Medal-2009 on Dr Bijay Singh, ICAR national professor, Punjab Agricultural University (PAU). The award is conferred after every three years on one of the INSA fellows for outstanding research in agricultural sciences.

As recipient of the award, Dr Bijay Singh will deliver a lecture on “Site-Specific Nutrient Management” under the aegis of INSA local chapter.

Dr Bijay Singh, a renowned soil scientist, has been working on rice-wheat cropping system for more than two decades and has made useful contributions in enhancing nitrogen use efficiency in rice-wheat cropping system, fertilizer-nitrogen related environmental pollution, and integrated nutrient management. His research on basic and applied aspects of integrated management of fertilisers, animal manures, green manures and crop residues has provided directions for achieving sustainable high yields in rice-wheat system and for maintaining the soil fertility for the future generations.

PAU Vice-Chancellor Dr Manjit Singh Kang has congratulated him for this coveted and well-deserved honour. In his congratulatory message to Dr Bijay Singh, Dr Kang said: “The honour brings recognition to the excellent work as well as to the PAU - the institution that serve so ably.”

Dr Bijay Singh is a Fellow of INSA, National Academy of Agricultural Sciences (NAAS), and the Indian Society of Soil Science (ISSS) and has received several awards, including Rafi Ahmad Kidwai Memorial Prize of ICAR, Recognition Award and Dr NS Randhawa Memorial Award of the National Academy of Agricultural Sciences and FAI Silver Jubilee Award of Excellence of the Fertiliser Association of India. Recently, he was elected vice-chairman of the Commission on Soil Fertility and Plant Nutrition of the International Union of Soil sciences. 

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10-day workshop at BVM
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 1
Bhartiya Vidya Mandir organised a 10-day workshop here today.

The session began with a yoga class for students of classes VIII to XII.

Simultaneously, there were a number of workshops for students of classes I to VII, including music, dance, art and craft, calligraphy, fabric and painting. Students of classes VIII to XII attended workshops like dramatics, model making, web designing and photography. Students showed a good response.

Meeting

Students and teachers of the Gujranwala Guru Nanak Institute of Management and Technology (GGNIMT) held a meeting here today.

Kuldip Singh, director of the institute, and coordinator Gunwant Singh Dua condemned racial attacks on Indian students in Australia.

The chairpersons, along with the members of the house, expressed empathy with the victims. They denounced the attacks and appealed for justice.

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Old man falls from roof, dies

Khamano, June 1
Jasvir Singh (70) of Sidhupur Kalan fell from the roof of his house yesterday night and died. This incident took place at around 1 am.

Jasvir, who was on the roof, fell from the roof, as he could not see the stairs as it was raining. The son got anxious when he didn’t found his father on the roof. On thorough search, he found his father lying unconscious on the ground. He woke a few neighbours and took him to the PGI, Chandigarh. But his father succumbed to his injuries after four hours. The body has been handed over to the kin after the postmortem.— OC

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Letters
MC lax

Thanks to officials of the municipal corporation, Ludhiana, city roads are choked due to poor planning.

Shops are constructed on main roads with poor parking facilities.

Through your newspaper, I would like to draw attention towards the construction of two commercial complexes on the Pakhowal road near the Feroz Gandhi market. The basements are being dug now.

Though I appreciate progress work, I would like to ask the MC if these complexes would have parking arrangements or the road would be used as parking lot?

And if the latter is going to be true, I request the MC to convert all roads into parking lots.

Civilised people would migrate to other cities so that the corporation does not find any difficulty in building malls and complexes on roads. Already the city is famous for maximum money and least civic sense.

Faqir Chand Sharma, Ludhiana

Readers are invited to mail letters (not more than 200 words) at "ludhiana@tribunemail.com" or post the same to The Tribune, 1, 2 Improvement Trust Building, Badaur House, Clock Tower, Ludhiana.

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Car theft: Sketches of suspects released
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 1
The police has released the sketches of four suspects who had stolen the car of a woman on Saturday evening.

The sketches were made as per the suspects’ description given by the victim to the police.

On Saturday evening, a newly married woman was abducted but later let off by the abductors at the Ferozepur Road.

The half-an-hour drama took place at around 7 pm when victim Vinita Gulati (25), resident of Manohar Nagar near CMC, had gone to VLCC in Sarabha Nagar.

The victim revealed that when she came out from the building, a white Maruti Dezire stopped in front of her car and one of the youths alighted from the vehicle and pushed her inside. Meanwhile, another youth took her car away.

The abductor forcibly threw her from the car at an octroi post and the duo fled along with her car.

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Rs 2 lakh stolen from car

Ludhiana, June 1
Thieves today broke the windshield of a car parked near Dandi Swami Temple and decamped with Rs 2 lakh kept in it. Anil Kumar (35), the victim, who is a thread trader, found the windshield of his Innova car broken and Rs 2 lakh stolen. He had parked the car outside his office.

According to residents, the Dandi Swami road remains busy throughout the day. It’s impossible for the thief to go unnoticed on this road in broad daylight. A case has been registered. — TNS

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Rise in Crime
Political interference renders cops helpless
KS Chawla

Ludhiana, June 1
The deteriorating crime graph is a matter of grave concern as criminals, who are roaming freely, are committing crime in the congested and busy areas of the town in broad daylight. Residents are jittery as the fear of the law and the police is subsiding with the passage of time.

A woman was deprived of her car and other valuables on the Malhar Road, a busy and posh area of the town, at around 6 pm on Saturday. This time of the day there is a huge rush of people on this particular road as a mall and PVR are located there. The miscreants dropped the woman near another mall on the Ferozepur road. This incident has made people particularly women panicky as a large number of woman drive cars on their own in the city.

A similar incident had taken place about six months ago when two criminals abducted a girl who had gone to the ‘apni mandi’ on the bank of the Sidhwan Canal to buy vegetables. While the mother was busy purchasing vegetables, the girl, who was sitting in the car, was abducted. The miscreants fled in the woman’s car. Later on, the girl was dropped in a similar manner. This incident took place when hundreds of men and women were purchasing vegetables from the mandi.

The incidents of snatching of jewellery, purses and mobile phones are also on the rise notwithstanding the fact that the city police has succeeded in busting some of the gangs.

Vehicle thefts are also on the rise as is evident from thefts that had taken place on busy areas like the Mall Road and marriage palaces. Even, numerous daylight robberies had taken place in which where huge sum of money has been snatched. Another crime pattern is that whenever somebody stops the miscreants from eve teasing, the same person is taught lesson the next day. Such incidents are on the increase as the politicians come to the rescue of such ‘affluent youths.’ Even otherwise, political interference in the day today functioning is increasing as the police officials find themselves helpless in taking action.

A senior police official narrated how a few rowdy elements managed to obtain political backing. These days the mobile phones are with almost everybody and whenever youth commits a crime and is caught on the road; he immediately puts the cell on the ear of police officials who are directed by politicians to release the youth. 

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