L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Industrialists on warpath
Remove pollution board chief
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 17
Against the move of the Punjab Pollution Control Board (PPCB) to cut the electricity connections of 13 dyeing units in the city, all dyeing associations have demanded to remove PPCB chairman Yogesh Goel to save the industry.

The protesting industrialists alleged that the board was causing harassment to the former. Hundreds of dyeing units’ owners gathered at the Vishkarma Chowk today and vent out their ire against the PPCB and its officials.

Federation of Dyeing Associations' chairman TR Mishra said the whole industry in Ludhiana had installed their effluent treatment plants (ETP) and released water only after treating it as per the norms set by the PPCB.

“Still the board officials are after our lives. They want that we should install zero discharge units, which is not even viable for big industrial units, what to talk of small industries in the business?” he asked.

Several associations, including Tajpur Road Dyeing and Industry Association, Ludhiana Dyeing Associations, Ludhiana Dyeing Factories’ Association, Ludhiana Dyeing and Finishing Association, Ludhiana Textile Dyeing Association and Bahadurke Dyers Association demanded that the orders of the disconnection of power to the industrial units must be revoked at the earliest.

The agitating members said a clear-cut policy should be adopted by the PPCB for the industrialists.

Tajpur Road Dyeing Association president Ashok Makkar said the zero discharge technology as required by the PPCB was not possible in the city. He said the price of setting the zero discharge treatment plant was 10-12 times more than the normal plant. “It is virtually not viable to install the zero discharge plants,” he said further adding that the PPCB was taking samples in a haphazard manner just to defame the industry.

TR Mishra said the PPCB chairman was spoiling the image of the board and the state government and was working against the interests of the industry, which was adding to the economy of Punjab. The associations announced their indefinite strike from today.


6 dyeing firms to lose power connections
Kuldip Bhatia

Ludhiana, August 17
In its bid to discipline the dyeing units for their failure to adhere to the stipulated norms for treatment of toxic effluent, the Punjab Pollution Control Board (PPCB) has issued instructions to the Punjab State Electricity Board (PSEB) for disconnection of power supply to half-a-dozen dyeing units located at the Focal Point.

Even though the closure notices were issued on Thursday, these were received in the PSEB central zone here today on account of three holidays from Friday to Sunday.

Deputy chief engineer HS Randhawa, city east circle, confirmed that the orders for the disconnection of power supply of six units were received and these had been forwarded to the executive engineer of the Focal Point division for compliance.

“The divisional office has been directed to process the disconnection orders (DCOs) and the power supply to these units will be closed by tomorrow positively.”

Meanwhile, authorities of the city east and city west circle of the PSEB have also swung into action against those industrial units, which were found to be violating the restrictions of three compulsory weekly offs, peak load restrictions or exceeding their sanctioned load by more than 25 per cent as per a commercial circular issued on August 13, 2009.

The PSEB had laid down that the units not scrupulously following the restrictions will face the disconnection of the power supply for one day for first violation, three days for second violation, while third violation will lead to the disconnection of the power supply for one week.

It was officially stated by the PSEB that the power supply of four units in the city west circle (one each in the city west and Janta Nagar division and two in the estate division) and another 11 in the city east circle (mostly at the Focal Point and CMC divisions) was disconnected for a day.

“In fact, the field staff had detected the violation of the restrictions in as many as 15 industrial units but the rest of them will face the disconnection on their next working day because shutting down power during the weekly off will render the penalty meaningless,” informed Randhawa.



Liquor Vend Menace- II
Den of anti-social activities
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 17
Traffic chaos, frequent fights and eve-teasing are some of the problems city residents are facing due to mushrooming of liquor vends in public places and residential areas.

Serpentine queues of vehicles and haphazard parking could easily be spotted outside the liquor vends.

And that is not all, the liquor vends have become the den of all anti-social activities. Some of the major brawls that took place in the recent past have one way or another started from liquor vend.

One of the major brawls that took place near Hero bakery in November last year was also started at a liquor vend and ended up brutally injuring five youths. One of the injured even spent more then two months in the DMCH.

The youths, who prefers to drink on streets, are always eager to pick up fight with any one.

“They are children of nouveau riches with no real goal in life. Getting drunk and pick up fights with people are the two things they have to do in routine.

The children of farmers, who have sold their land to colonizers and earned money, are the real trouble creators,” said Surinder Singh, a Ghumar Mandi resident.

Sarabha Nagar, Ferozepur Road, Pandit Parantha Walla and Railway Station have become the hot spots for the tipplers.

The mushrooming up of liquor bars close to the residential areas have created more troubles for the residents.

Many societies have opposed the opening up of liquor vends near their colonies but their repeated agitation have yeilded no response from the authorities.

“It is very difficult to cross in front of liquor vend with family. Tipplers, who are often in an inebriated condition make such nasty comments which are enough to test the patience of a person,” said Tajinderpal Singh.

The houses which fall in the neighbourhood of a liquor vend find no buyers. Even the shops which fall close to the liquor vend face a crash in sales, added Tajinderpal Singh, a resident of BRS Nagar.

According to the Assistant Excise and Taxation Department, any vend can open at a minimum distance of 50 metres from a religious institution or a school. But on the contrary, there are many vends which are situated close to religious institutions and schools.

“It is getting very difficult for us to maintain law and order with the rapidly increasing number of liquor vends. The excise and taxation authorities should realise that with handful of policemen, we cannot deal with the crime and keep the tipplers at bay. Before allotting the liquor vend, the excise department should make a check of the ground realities,” said a senior officer.



Rs 6 lakh stolen from PNB ATM
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 17
Thieves strike at an ATM of PNB bank situated in Rishi Nagar Block- Y and decamped with cash over Rs 6 lakh here today.

The incident came to light this evening when employees of a private company arrived to refill the ATM machine and found it empty.

They immediately informed the company authorities and police about the incident.

On the other hand the police has detained three employees Vanshu Joshi, Mangal Singh and a former employee Gurpreet Singh on the basis of suspicion of theft.

According to the police, it seem the handiwork of technician who knew how to open an ATM machine. Further, the police said that the machine could not be opened without applying a password.



2 Haibowal men die in accident
Our Correspondent

Raikot, August 17
Two youths have died when the car they were travelling in rammed into a truck coming from the opposite side.

The accident took place on Saturday when both brothers, Sachin Gupta (29) and Varun Gupta (25), driving a Maruti Zen car (PB 10 AV 8352) rammed into a Barnala-bound truck (PB 10 V 9971) near Jalaldiwal village.

Both brothers, dealing in agriculture machines spare parts, were returning from Mansa on a payment collection tour. They were to collect the payment from a dealer of Raikot. When they had not reached his place even after an hour, he tried to locate them and got information of their accident. He informed their father Rakesh Gupta of Haibowal Kalan in Ludhiana about the tragic accident.

The eyewitnesses said the car had reached Jalaldiwal village when the driver of the car tried to save his car from a carcass of a dead animal lying in the centre of the road. In his attempt to save the car, the driver lost the control over the car and rammed straight into the truck coming from opposite side and went under the truck.

Varun Gupta was married just seven months ago while Sachin Gupta was married five year ago and had a four-year-old son.



Asst town planner shifted to Bathinda
City to have two town planners soon
Jyotika Sood
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 17
In a major change for the Municipal Corporation, the city is going to have two Municipal Town Planners.

According to sources, Jalandhar MTP S.S. Bhatia asked to join Ludhiana in an orders passed by the Punjab Local Bodies department today.

Besides, Assistant Town Planner (ATP) Ramesh Chabbra, who has the charge of B and D zones, has been transferred to Bathinda.

With the transfers, now the city would have two MTPs, Hemant Batra and S.S. Bhatia. The decision has come following directions of Punjab Local Government Minister Manoranjan Kalia.

Sources in the department revealed that during the minister's visit to Ludhiana recently, he was put in embarrassing situation over illegal constructions and the decision had taken in wake of it.

Besides, the minister also received some complaints about ATP Ramesh Chabbra by BJP leaders, stating that the officer was not complying with their orders.

That's not all. Recently, STP B.S. Brar had also complained about the officer to Municipal Commissioner G.S. Ghuman, stating that he was taking his orders seriously and even didn't pick up his phones.

Interestingly, Chabbra has been known as blue-eyed boy of the Municipal Commissioner for the past few months, especially after he was given additional charge of MTP along with ATP zone-B.

Apart from it, the Municipal Commissioner recently added another clause in the approval of building plans, making it compulsory for the applicant to get signature of ATP D-zone, which at present was Ramesh Chabbra.

When Punjab Local Bodies Director S.K. Sharma was asked about the transfers, he confirmed the development.



Illegal constructions gift of politicians
Jyotika Sood
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 17
With the Punjab and Haryana High Court scolding the Ludhiana Municipal Corporation for illegal structures, a number of facts came to fore about how politicians make MC officials a scapegoat.

The rampant illegal constructions in Ludhiana for which MC officials are facing the wrath of the judiciary is a gift of politicians too.

The fact is that although some of the Area Town Planners of the MC in the past had brought illegal constructions to the notice of successive municipal commissioners a number of times, no action came up in most of the cases.

A Tribune investigation revealed that various official reports were submitted to successive municipal commissioners by some Area Town Planners from time to time regarding illegal constructions coming up at certain politicians’ behest.

Take for example, the illegal construction of 20 shops in Transport Nagar that came up in 2009 where Area Town Planner (ATP) Kamaljeet Kaur had informed in writing to Municipal Commissioner G.S. Ghuman that she was under a lot of political pressure by certain BJP leaders.

Similarly, ATP S.S. Bindra had submitted various reports to the municipal commissioner regarding illegal constructions coming up in South Model Gram and Model Town Extension B-block at certain politicians’ behest.

Even ATP Harpreet Singh Ghai had written several times to successive municipal commissioners informing about illegal construction and violations of the building bylaws.

The various reports and letters submitted to the commissioners, photocopies of which are in possession of The Tribune, reveals how certain political leaders are sheltering illegal constructions in the city that are under scanner by the high court.

Even political interference is witnessed several times during demolition drives by the civic body, where municipal councillors come to the aid of the public and succumbing to their pressure, civic body officials return empty-handed. The recent example is the Punjab Mata Nagar drive.

Despite repeated attempts Municipal Commissioner G.S. Ghuman could not be contacted.



Badal’s comments on PIL draw ire
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 17
Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal’s appeal to the judiciary to discourage the filing of PIL petitions to stall important government projects for development and economic growth of the region has sparked a controversy.

Right to Information (RTI) activists have criticised the comments.

Badal made this comment, addressing the All-India Joint Conference of Chief Ministers of States and Chief Justice of High Courts in Delhi yesterday.

Varinder Bhakoo, general secretary of the Citizens for Public Cause, an NGO, reacted strongly against the CM’s statement. He said, "People have no faith in politicians and they are pinning their hopes in judiciary only. If politicians could discourage corruption in public offices and address the public grievances, then why would people have to knock the door of the judiciary to seek justice?"

He further added that if the judiciary would stop entertaining PILs, then their would be not one to question the politicians and they would do everything according to their will which would ultimately escalate corruption in public offices.

There have been many instances in which the RTI activists have played a pivotal role in unearthing scams in the government projects.

In a majority of the cases, these RTI activists have approached the court and filed PIL, requesting to stall such projects.

Kuldeep Singh, one of the RTI activists, who fought a relentless fight against politicians and bureaucrats for alleged malpractices in Gill Road project, said, "If the government projects would have been corruption free, then there would have been no need to file a PIL against these projects. After all, it is people’s hard earned money and they have every right to object."



18 members to take part in Japan conference
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 17
Eighteen-member delegation of Indian doctors for peace and development (IDPD) will take part in the South Asia and North Asia regional conference of the International Physicians for the Prevention of Nuclear War (IPPNW). The conference will be held on August 22 and 23 in Hiroshima.

Doctors and medical students from J & K, Punjab, Bihar, Manipur, Delhi and Tamil Nadu will represent the delegation. Dr. Livtar Singh Chawla, vice-president, IPPNW, and president IDPD, Dr Arun Mitra, general secretary, IDPD , Dr N.S.Bawa, vice-president, Dr. Santokh Singh, member, central council, and Rachana Bawa (medical student) will be the part of the group.

The conference is being held on the theme ”We can abolish nuclear weapons. Now is the opportunity!”.



Price Rise
BJP burns effigy of Central Govt
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 17
BJP activists today burned an effigy of the Central government for its failure to keep a check on the price rise.

Addressing protestors, BJP district president Om Prakash Bhardwaj said, “The UPA government is responsible for the five K's - kar (tax), killat (shortage), kimat (price), katar (queues) and kala bazaari (black marketing)- which have left people irked. Instead of putting a helping hand on public's shoulder, the UPA government has targeted their pockets, thereby leaving people stranded.”

He said every commodity be it oil, sugar, vegetable or pulses, all were beyond the reach of “aam admi”, which was the main focus of the UPA government in its manifesto.

He said, “The common man these days is of the opinion that the Central government is more interested in its relations with the neighbour country, Pakistan, rather than trying to find out solution for the public.”

The BJP workers raised slogans like “Gareeb kare hai hai, Sonia kare bye bye”, “Manmohan ka funda, chalaya mehangai ka danda” and “Dal, chinni, chana mehanga hua dudh, Congress ne paida kiya mehangai ka poot”, etc.

The protesters, which included senior Deputy Mayor Praveen Bansal, said, “The BJP government during its tenure was committed to provide respite from the price rise, while the Congress has failed miserably.”



Insects in pack of bread
Anshu Seth
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 17
The presence of insects in a bread manufactured by a reputed company came as a shock for Harkrishan Singh of Bhora village, who is a regular consumer of the products made under the brand name.

The consumer bought the bread from a confectioner in Salem Tabri yesterday evening. Interestingly, the pack did not bear the manufacturing date but only carried the date for "best before" that is August 20.

"It is not fair on the part of companies to take their consumers for granted as the product is not worth consuming even before the date of expiry," complained the consumer.

What is more shocking is the fact that there are three slices which have more than four insects baked within.

Fungus in bakery products, flies/insects in soft drink bottles, pieces of glass in pulses is a common sight but it is the lackadaisical attitude of the departments that refrain people from pursuing their cases against the companies guilty of supplying poor quality products. So much so that some companies have even got away with sachets of tobacco in soft drink bottle.



Quality education drive for Class IX, X
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 17
Preparations are going on to introduce Rashtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyaan (RMSA) in the government schools.

The scheme is sponsored and funded by the HRD Ministry to provide good quality education to all young people in the age group of 14 to 18 years.

Earlier, Sarva Shiksha Abhiyaan was meant for universalisation of primary and upper primary education. Now, Rashtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyaan (RMSA) is being introduced to upgrade the secondary education.

According to the information, the scheme will be introduced in Class IX and X for improving teaching and learning. The Director-General School Education, Punjab, who is looking after SSA, will also take care of RMSA.

The DGSE has asked all government schools in the state to provide information regarding the infrastructure available and the number of teachers working at present in the schools.

He has further asked the schools to give their requirements for the proper implementation of the RMSA, including the number of posts lying vacant and further requirement of the teachers for the RMSA purpose.

Amarjit Kaur, District Education Officer (Secondary), said,”They are busy in collecting information from schools which will be sent to the Director-General Schools Education”.

Under the RMSA, emphasis will be on providing quality secondary education, including vocational education. Meanwhile, various heads of the schools were of the opinion that the scheme would be a big success, if all requirements of the basic infrastructure were met.

The government has changed the nomenclature of District Education Officer, Primary to DEO (Elementary). This change had been made with the introduction of Sarva Shiksha Abhiyaan in the government schools which covers students up to Class VIII.



State honour for engineer
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 17
An executive engineer, Mohd Ishfaq, working as the District Programme Management Specialist at District Programme Management Cell of the Water Supply and Sanitation Department, has been awarded state level Parman Patra, 2009.

The award was conferred by the Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal at state level I-Day celebrations held at Ferozepore. Ishfaq was among the 29 eminent persons who have rendered meritorious service in various fields.

Ishfaq received a 'parman patra', cash award of Rs 11,000 and a shawl for his meritorious service in the implementation of World Bank assisted rural water supply project.

An elated Mohd Ishfaq thanked God for the award. Ishfaq is working on Rs 1280 crore World Bank assisted water supply sanitation project for rural areas. It is a unique demand driven project which is being implemented in a people’s participation mode.

His main role is to mobilise the village communities and motivate them to form village level committees, collect beneficiary share and build their capacity for the successful implementation of the water supply project. Due to his intense efforts, so far, 94 villages have formed committees and collected Rs 149 lakh as beneficiary share.



An RTI activist at 23
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 17
At the age when the youth are more concerned about their career choices, this 23-year-old city lawyer decided to use his profession to bring a change. Saurabh Gupta, who has joined the league of RTI activists giving a backseat to his job priorities.

A KVM pass-out, Saurabh always had a will to do something different. While he was pursuing law at Panjab University, the RTI Act, 2005, was introduced and he was persuaded to use the law to its utmost.

Giving a vision to his dream, he joined the Anti-Corruption and Crime Investigation Cell, a city NGO, as legal adviser-cum-legal draftsman. "Initially, I started my work with the NGO as a volunteer but now I am being paid for some cases," says Saurabh, who has represented cases before the Punjab State Information Commission.

According to Saurabh, RTI is one of the best forms of freedom a nation can give to its citizen. People can use the Act to get documents which can be used as evidences for cases.



200 examined at medical camp
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 17
A three-day medical camp got underway at Master Tara Singh Memorial College for Women. Cabinet minister Hira Singh Gabria inaugurated the camp. He emphasised on healthy body adding that it was a vital step to keep a healthy mind.

A team of doctors, including Dr Manu Madaan, an eye specialist, Dr Ruchika Sofat from Rama Sofat Nursing Home and doctors from the civil hospital examined more than 200 students. The doctors tested the blood groups and haemoglobin of the girls.

Principal, Dr Parveen Kaur Chawla, thanked Hira Singh Gabria, management and the team of doctors for their efficient services and contribution.

She also highlighted the importance of routine check up of youngsters, especially females for a healthy society.



PAU Notes
Seminar on French language tomorrow
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 17
The PAU Club, “Litteraire Francais” will be organising a seminar on “French language, literature and culture” at the Students’ Home Auditorium on August 19 at 5.30 pm.

PAU Vice-Chancellor, Dr Manjit Singh Kang, will be the chief guest of the event. He is also the patron of the club. The seminar will have lectures on various topics such as “Journey of an Indian teenager to

France by Monique Kalsi”, Jean De La Fontaine- A great French fablist by Harpreet Kaur”, “Robert Frost called a new England poet by Gursimran Kaur”, etc. Dr CK Singh will share his personal experiences during his recent visit to France, while Dr JS Bains will speak on commonly used words and expressions in French. The students of one-year French course at PAU and faculty members will participate.

VC biography in US directory

Fred Marks, Editor-in-Chief of the Marquis Who’s Who in America, has informed Punjab Agricultural University Vice-Chancellor, Dr Manjit Singh Kang, of the inclusion of his biography in the 2010 Edition of the Directory.

According to Marks, the inclusion in this exclusive directory distinguishes Dr Kang as one of the foremost achievers in his field. The Marquis Who’s Who in America features the nations’ highest achievers in every significant field of endeavour from business and politics, healthcare and science, entertainment and arts.

This directory will include the complete biography of the chosen individuals, which will be a useful reference for future generations.

Internationally renowned quantitative geneticist, Dr Kang has made outstanding contributions in the field of plant breeding and quantitative genetics.

He has authored/edited more than 10 books and contributed 35 book chapters and encyclopedia essays in genetics and has published more than 120 refereed journal articles in the international journals and 136 other scientific articles.

He has provided outstanding leadership in his profession and organised many national/international conferences and has won several honours and professional awards such as Fellow of American Society of Agronomy, Fellow of Crop Science Society of America and US Fulbright Senior Scholar to Malaysia award in 1999.

Global scholarship

Bhanu Kalia, who completed her MSc at Punjab Agricultural University prior to her enrolment for PhD programme at Kansas State University (KSU) in America, has been awarded Monsanto's prestigious Beachell-Borlaug Fellowship for her doctoral study. The funding has been made from Monsanto's Beachell-Borlaug International Scholarship Programme (MBBIS).

In his congratulatory letter to Bhanu Kalia and Dr Bikram Gill of department of plant pathology, KSU, Manhattan, Kansas, Dr Ed Runge, project director and chairman of the judging panel, said Kalia was one of the 12 applicants selected for funding support out of 48 applicants. He informed that the total

budget approved for Kalia's PhD programme was US $ 187,167.

Dr Gill under whom Kalia will complete her PhD programme informed that a part of the work would be done at the PAU and there would be US $ 5,000 sub-contract for the PAU next year.

PAU Vice-Chancellor, Dr Manjit Singh Kang, while congratulating Kalia on this prestigious honour said her learning through the programme would equip her with knowledge to address the research needed back home.



Orientation programme for INIFD students
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 17
An orientation programme has been organised at the Inter-National Institute of Fashion Designing (INIFD). The programme has been organised keeping in view the overall growth of students.

Every single day of the 5-day orientation programme has been so meticulously designed that within this short time, it will not only make the students comfortable with the culture and high standards being maintained at the institute, but also make them sensitive to the importance of self-grooming as well as motivate them to achieve the professional goals they aspire for.

At the culmination of this orientation programme, the students will be invited over to the institute for a guided tour, facilitated by the faculty, so that they can be appraised of the facilities that they can avail of during their course of study



Prize distribution at BCM

Ludhiana, August 17
BCM Senior Secondary School, Chandigarh Road, Ludhiana, organised a prize distribution function to honour all-rounders and scholars of the school, who have brought laurels in academics, competition exams and NCC, etc.

Dr Sandeep Puri, head of medicines and superintendent of DMCH, was the chief guest and Satyanand Ji Munjal presided over the event. Dr Sandeep laid emphasis on value education.

Tiny tots also presented a cultural programme, which made audience spellbound. Principal DP Guleria read the annual report and congratulated the winners. — TNS



Ludhiana Calling
Green cover need of the hour

Going by the numerous Van Mahotsava functions being organised in different parts of the country, one feels that massive tree plantation programmes are the only ways, which would go a long way to save the global environment. One wonders if lakhs of trees had been planted in the past, the country would not be facing the problem of receding green cover now. If saplings are planted at all, these must be looked after till they grow into a full-fledged tree. “Each one, plant one,” should be everybody’s motto.

Unholy act

A violent clash between two groups of residents in Chander Nagar in the city during the Janmashtami celebrations last week shows that how some people can stoop to satisfy their egos and even religious functions are no exception when it comes to fight for supremacy.

To the utter shock of the city residents, the clash took place over the selection of a child who was to enact Lord Krishna in the tableau depicting the big event. Members of the family, whose child was not selected, levelled the allegations of favouritism and assaulted kin of the other child who enacted the role of the Krishna.

Such shameful act is simply against the basic tenets of religion, and is tantamount to sacrilege of a holy occasion.

Badals and rains

"Why cannot it rain when two Badals have come to your village," said Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal when he took the stage at the annual fair recently organised at Isru village near Khanna, in memory of martyr Karnail Singh Isru who had laid down his life during the freedom struggle of Goa after Independence.

He was referring to his son Sukhbir(Deputy CM), as the second Badal, who too made a brief speech on the occasion. Despite a poor gathering due to incessant rains which led to poor sound quality on the public address system, the crowd gave a cheering response to the Badal utterance.

Speaking at an alternate stage, Rajinder Kaur Bhattal, a former Chief Minister, said:"The good rain, today, has nothing to do with the Badals on the Shiromani Akali Dal(SAD) stage. These Badals have not given us anything. They have only dried our resources."

Dazzling mom…..

The dazzling look of the small screen actors is catching not only the eyes of mothers who look upon them as their fashion idols but also, surprisingly, of their tiny tots who watch them with interest.

Interestingly, a mother of small girl who is still in kindergarten wants her mother to dress up exactly like TV stars. "My daughter wants me to dress up in heavy suits and sarees with matching jewellery. She feels that I look outdated when I dress up casually at home," says the mother.

On one occasion this girl refused to go along with her mother to school as her mother was dressed up in trousers and a shirt. She forced her mother to wear a saree along with the jewellery. "Now I will proudly say that my mother is the most beautiful in this world," chuckles the small girl.

Noble deed

The medical camp organised by the district health and family welfare department in Punjabi Bagh following the gastroenteritis outbreak was a fine example of nobility attached to the medical profession.

As civil surgeon Dr Maninderjit Singh and District Health Officer Dr SS Dhir were supervising the proceedings of the camp, a dehydrated child suffered a cardiac arrest. The Civil Surgeon and the District Health Officer immediately sprung into action in their capacity as qualified anaesthetist and didn't give up till they successfully resuscitated the child.Inspired by the act, it was Dr Gurjit Singh (SMO Sahnewal) next who too discharged his duty as an anaesthetist to save the lives of two more.

Touched by the humility of their seniors, the paramedical staff volunteered to do overtime and even went the extra mile for offering their best services to the suffering souls.

Lord Krishna comes calling

This Janmashtami several kids from the city were seen dressed up as Lord Krishna. While some participated in their school functions, others who could not grab a role went to the temples in the evening, dressed as Krishan kanhiya.

Every child was seen enthusiastic to play the role of Krishna. It seems it was the passion to dress up as Lord Krishna that this kid (see picture) came to the temple along with this father. But soon he was overpowered by drowsiness and went in a sleep. Sleeping in the arms of his father, this kid looked sweet, giving the impression as if Krishna were sleeping in the lap of his father Nand.

Contributed by Kanchan Vasdev, Kuldip Bhatia, Sanjeev Singh Bariana, Manav Ghuman, Anshu Seth and Manav Ghuman



Targeting Advertising on the Internet
By Anil Maheshwari

Targeted audience in the media for advertisers or customised advertising has been one of the main reasons for the phenomenal growth of the New Media or Web Journalism. Notwithstanding, all concern and uproar over online privacy, marketers and data companies have always known much more about consumers’ offline lives, like income, credit score, home ownership, even what car they drive and whether they have a hunting licence. Recently, some of these companies have started connecting this mountain of information to consumers’ browsers.

According to The New York Times, the result is a sea change in the way consumers encounter the Web. Not only will people see customised advertising, they will see different versions of websites from other consumers and even receive different discount offers while shopping - all based on information from their offline history. Two women in adjoining offices could go to the same cosmetic site, but one might see a Rs. 5,000 perfume, the other the house-brand lipstick on sale for Rs. 250.

The technology that makes the connection is nothing new - it is a tiny piece of code called a cookie that is placed on a hard drive. But the information it holds is. And it is all done invisibly.

“Now, you’re travelling the Internet with a cookie that indicates you’re this type of consumer: age group X, income level, urban versus rural, presence of children in the household,” said a product leader in a US company, one of the several companies offering this linking to marketers.

Advertisers and marketers say this specificity is useful, taking out the guesswork involved in online-only profiling, and showing products to the people most likely to be interested. Retailers in the US are using this tactic.

But consumer advocates say such unseen tracking is troubling. On the old Internet, nobody knew you were a dog. On the new targeted Internet, they now know what kind of dog you are, your favorite leash color, the last time you had fleas etc.

“The industry’s love affair with persistent cookies has made it virtually impossible for users to go online without being tracked and profiled,” said an executive director of a company.

In fact it is online behavioural targeting. Recall an article on the “the Numerati” in this column in this regard. Consumers can avoid cookie-based tracking by deleting cookies from their computers or setting their browsers not to accept cookies. But few do, and privacy advocates say it is easy for companies to add cookies without users noticing.

For decades, data companies have compiled reams of information on every American: One of the companies smugly claim that it has 1,500 pieces of data on every American, based on information from warranty cards, bridal and birth registries, magazine subscriptions, public records and even dog registrations with the American Kennel Club.

Patrick Williams, the publisher of the personal finance magazine Worth, recently asked a company to find the names and addresses of 10,000 Americans from each of 11 identified cities who had houses worth more than $1 million, net worth of over $2 million, lived within a few miles of other rich people and subscribed to business publications.

“They are the scariest data research company around - they know far too much,” said Williams, who said he was very happy with the amount of information it gave him.

Such companies make the connection between online and offline data when a person registers on a Web site or clicks through on an e-mail message from a marketer.

For marketers, all this data is a boon. A hearing-aid company, asked a company in this field to find people online who were 65 and over, owned a house, were head of a household, made more than $35,000 a year and lived in New England so it could show them ads.

“What was surprising was we found the majority of responders turned out to be women 35 to 40 who had elderly parents at home,” said a senior executive of the hearing aid company.

By using real-world data online, marketers can customise messages even further - showing different products to people with different shopping habits, whether it is in ads, an e-mail message or in semi-personalised Web pages.

Some marketers are using offline data more subtly - for example, showing a budget shopper a discount offer and a regular shopper a full-price section. “The people who buy less frequently and are most price-conscious may get a better deal than someone who buys more frequently, who would buy anyway,” said a senior business executive.

“It is a little Big Brother-ish,” opined a middle-aged social worker who shops online regularly. Still, she said, she wasn’t shocked. “Every time you put out information about yourself - people have got to understand - it’s going to be collected by somebody.”

Some online companies avoid matching online and offline profiles. In 2000, DoubleClick abandoned plans to connect online and offline data after a huge outcry. Google, which later acquired DoubleClick, has been conducting studies that connect the two areas, but it does not currently collect or serve ads based on such personal information without user permission , Sandra Heikkinen, a Google spokeswoman, said.

While Acxiom, Datran and some of their partners address their use of tracking in their privacy policies, such policies have become worthless, Rotenberg said. “Real transparency means that the user gets access to the information, not to a policy about the information,” he said.

Paul M. Schwartz, a law professor and privacy expert at the law school of the University of California, Berkeley, said the unwitting participation by consumers makes online marketing different from offline. “Interactive media really gets into this creepy Orwellian thing, where it’s a record of our thoughts on the way to decision-making,” he said. “We’re like the data-input clerks now for the industry.”

It seems only a few years are left before a gullible consumer in India too is trapped by this increasing online targeting advertising. Even this technological advancement can be used by our politicians in the biggest democracy in the world.

The writer is an editor with The Instanlogs (anilm@instablogs.com)



Man rapes 5-year-old
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 17
The city police booked a father of two children for allegedly abduction and raping 5-year-old girl at Dhandari Kalan on the night of August 15.

The accused has been identified as Dinesh Kumar (27), a resident of Kanganwal.

The case has been registered on the complaint of the victim's father.

According to the victim's father, Dinesh Kumar was living in the same quarter where the former was putting up with his family.

On August 15, when all residents were celebrating I-Day, Dinesh, on finding the girl alone, lured her and took her in an autorickshaw. The victim's father alleged that he saw Dinesh abducting his child and started chasing him.

He alleged by the time he could catch him, Dinesh was successful in his evil design.

The victim was rushed to hospital where her condition was stated to be serious.

Her medical was conducted today and the report of the test would be available tomorrow.



Table Tennis
Double delight for Nirdosh, Manpreet
Our Sports Reporter

Ludhiana, August 17
Nirdosh from Guru Nanak Khalsa College for Women, Gujarakhan campus, Model Town, and Manpreet Singh of Satish Chander Dhawan Government College hogged limelight by winning two titles each in the 20th Prithipal Singh Memorial Table Tennis Tournament held at the Punjab Agricultural University campus here today.

Nirdosh bagged top honours in the youth girls and women's singles category, while Manpreet Singh annexed titles in the youth boys as well as men's singles sections to stamp their superiority over others.

In the youth girls and women's final, Nirdosh overpowered her college mate, Deepika, in straight sets to clinch the titles, while Manpreet Singh outclassed Bhavuk 3-1 to wrap up the title in the youth boys’ category.

However, he had to toil hard to tame Dharminder in five sets and win men's singles title.

In the junior girls’ section, Kritika of Alpine International Public School survived a scare before romping home as champion against Kirti Aggarwal of Bhartiya Vidya Mandir whom she pipped 11-7, 11-8, 7-11, 5-11 and 13-11.

Sandeep Singh of Bhartiya Vidya Mandir bagged junior boys’ title when he outperformed Agnish in five sets 11-9, 7-11, 11-9, 10-12 and 13-11.

Harminder Singh, former table tennis star was the chief guest at the prize distribution function while Naveen Bhatia, Upar Singh and Tejvinder Singh were guests of honour.

Cash and attractive prizes were given to the position holders.


Junior girls’ singles (semifinals) Kirti Aggarwal (BVM) beat Turun Priya (GNPS) 7-11, 11-9, 12-10, 11-5; Kritika (Alpine) beat Dhriti (BVM) 11-8, 11-4, 11-9.

Junior boys’ singles (semifinals): Agnish (BVM) beat Shaun (SHCS) 11-8, 7-11, 5-11, 11-5, 11-7; Sandeep (BVM) beat Shubham Grover (Alpine) 11-8, 11-7, 11-5.

Youth girls’ singles (semifinals): Nirdosh (GNKW) beat Manpreet (Kh) 11-8, 12-10, 11-6; Deepika (GNKW) beat Kritika (Alpine) 11-5, 7-11, 11-9, 13-11.

Youth boys’ singles (semifinals): Manpreet (SDGC) beat Sandeep (BVM) 11-4, 11-9, 11-3, Bhavak (Alpine) beat Dharminder (GL) 11-8, 11-9, 14-12.

Men’s singles (semifinals): Dharminder (GL) beat Karanvir (MB) 11-8, 9-11, 11-7, 12-10; Manpreet beat Bhavuk (Alpine) 11-6, 8-11, 12-10, 13-11.

Women’s singles (semifinals): Nirdosh (GNKW) beat Dhriti (BVM) 11-8, 11-7, 8-11, 11-9; Deepika (GNKW) beat Kriti Aggarwal (BVM) 8-11, 10-12, 11-9, 11-7, 11-9.

Senior men’s singles (final): Vijay Sharma beat Jagmohan 11-8, 7-11, 11-9, 10-12, 11-8.

Lucky double (final): Rachit and Yashi beat Parul and Kritika 11-9, 8-11, 11-5.

Mixed double (final): Abhaydeep and Bhavuk beat Sumeet and Dharminder 11-9, 10-12, 11-9.



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