L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Medical waste disposal
Staff call for fresh probe against hospital
Anshu Seth
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 12
With no action taken by the district health department against the Dr BL Kapoor Memorial Hospital over disposal of the bad blood in drains and empty blood bags in a garbage dump last April, former hospital employees have once again taken up the matter with the Punjab health minister. They have also approached the directorate of health, state drug controller and the city deputy commissioner, demanding a fresh inquiry into the matter.

Jeevan, a former hospital employee, had put up an application under the RTI Act at the civil surgeon’s office on December 3, 2009 wherein she had sought details of the probe conducted against hospital officials. The inquiry was marked by the Ludhiana civil surgeon against the hospital management on the disposal of 173 bottles and bags of bad blood in complete violation of the prescribed norms of disposal of medical waste.

"Even after 38 days after the application was put up under RTI the department has not furnished any information on the issue," Jeevan stated.

NGOs working for the cause of voluntary blood donation too had taken strong notice of the matter with a regular blood donor calling the act as "criminal". "Thousands of people die in our country due to blood not being available at the right moment. Negligence in preservation of blood should not be condoned," the donor said.

Even though the licence of the hospital’s blood bank expired in 2007 it has been operating without a licence and a full time blood transfusion officer.

A hospital employee, requesting anonymity, said: "A part time blood transfusion officer comes to the blood bank and supervises it from 10 am to 3 pm. In the absence of a full time officer the technicians take care of the blood bank’s operation”.

The hospital’s medical superintendent, Dr Waheguru Pal Singh, could not be contacted while the chairman of the hospital management, Baljit Kapur, expressed ignorance about the existing anomalies in the functioning of the blood bank. However, the latter assured to look into the matter at the earliest, promising to take action against those found guilty of “bringing a bad name to the hospital”.


Weather patterns deviate from normal this year
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 12
In the past four decades the maximum temperature in the city has never been so low as that recorded this year. In the first week of January it was nearly 5 degrees C below normal and this week it has fallen further to almost 10 degrees below normal.

According to Dr KK Gill of Punjab Agricultural University’s agro-meteorological department, while the minimum temperature remained normal there was a lot of fluctuation in the maximum temperature this month. On January 11 the maximum temperature recorded was 8.6 degrees C while the minimum was 6.4 against the normal of 19 and 5 degrees C, respectively. "It’s for the first time in the last 40 years that the gap in minimum and maximum temperatures stayed at only 2 degrees C", she said.

Gill added the maximum temperatures were below normal by 8 to 12 degrees C in most parts of Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, Punjab, Haryana and Delhi. “Besides, the relative humidity was also above normal (being 100%) during mornings hours and 90 per cent during evenings, with zero sunshine hours for the past six days against the normal of 7.0 sunshine hours for the week”, she noted.

According to the latest weather forecast today, a ‘western disturbance’ of moderate intensity lies over north Pakistan and adjoining Jammu & Kashmir due to which cold conditions continue to prevail over most parts of Punjab, Haryana, Delhi and Uttar Pradesh.

"Low/medium clouds are seen over parts of the western Himalayan region like Punjab which are expected to bring scattered rainfall over parts of the plains of the northwest and adjoining central regions of the country till tomorrow. After the passage of the western disturbance, the night temperatures are expected to fall at many places in the region. Due to increase in the moisture level and fall in the night temperatures, there is good chance of reoccurrence of fog activity over the plains of northwestern India, leading to cold wave conditions settling in the region", Gill said.

She added rainfall was expected in the coming days, which would be good for ‘rabi’ crops as wheat required irrigation at this stage.

“This is the optimum period for sowing oilseeds like sunflower and transplanting ‘rabi’ season onions. Farmers are advised to wait for clear days. For potato growers, it is recommended to apply light irrigation to protect the crop from being damaged by the cold. Farmers could also use mulches and smoke for the protection against the chill. As chances of rainfall are there the weather is likely to clear up in two or three days”, she said.



Confusion over filing of VAT forms
Manav Mander
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 12
Confusion prevails among traders and the excise and taxation department over the filing of Forms C and H with the annual VAT return.

Traders say that the last date for the filing of the forms has been extended till March 31, as assured by minister Hira Singh Gabria, but officials say that they have no intimation from the department in this regard.

The last date for the filing of VAT return was November 20 and the traders had requested for an extension of the date since the forms were not available. During the trade association’s meeting with Gabria, he assured them that the last date would be extended till March 31.

Heavy additional tax would be charged if they failed to submit the return on time. Initially, the filing of Form C with the quarterly VAT returns was not necessary, but now it has been made mandatory to fill Forms C and H along with all VAT refund applications.

Jagjeevan Singh, a trader, said since the forms were not available, they had requested the minister to extend the last date for the submission of C and H Forms.

Jatinder Khurana, president of the taxation young lawyers association, said the traders had been left in the lurch. “On the one hand, the minister assured to extend the date while on the other hand the department has no such instruction.”

The DETC, Parampal Singh, stated: “We have no official intimation regarding it. Only the traders are telling us about the extension of the last date.”



Nitin's family offers reward for killer’s arrest
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 12
With the aim of speeding up the investigation into the murder of Nitin Garg, the 23-year-old Jagraon youth who was stabbed to death on January 2 in Melbourne, his family has announced a cash reward of AU $10,000 to any one who provides information leading to the arrest of the killer(s) to the Australian police.

The reward was announced by Nitin’s family members after his body was cremated in Jagraon today.

Hanish, the deceased’s elder brother, told The Tribune: "The investigations made by the Australian police has remained inconclusive eight days after the death of my brother. Hence the family has decided to offer a reward of AU $10,000 to any person who furnishes information about the killer(s)."

For Hanish arrest of the suspect(s) has become the prime goal of his life. He said he was in constant touch with the Australian police.

A relative said, “We have heard the cops were making public announcements as they failed to find any clue relating to Nitin’s murder”. The deceased’s uncle said the family members did not have faith in the Australian police as “they had failed to do anything eight days after Nitin’s death.”



Condolence Meeting
Rs 5 lakh given to Nitin’s mother
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, January 12
A condolence meeting in the memory of Nitin Garg, who was killed in an attack in Australia, was held here today.

Representatives of various political parties, officers of the district administration and social organisations paid tributes to Nitin.

Ludhiana Deputy Commissioner Vikas Garg gave a cheque for Rs 5 lakh to Parveen Garg, mother of Nitin. The ex gratia was earlier announced by Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal.

Hira Singh Gabria said Indians, particularly Punjabis, were well settled in countries across the world and played an important role in the development there.

He asked to the union government to ensure the safety and security of Indians residing abroad, particularly youth who had gone there for higher education. He expressed his condolences with the bereaved family.

Political secretary to Deputy Chief Minister Paramjit Singh Sidhwan, legislators Avtar Singh Brar, Gurdeep Singh Bhaini and Harmohinder Singh, Ludhiana (rural) SSP Harinder Singh Chahal, district planning committee chairman Bhag Singh Malla and others paid tributes to the deceased.

The condolence message of Munish Tewari along with those from different political and social organisations was also read out.



Domestic LPG cylinders seized from eateries
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 12
The department of food and civil supplies seized 10 domestic LPG cylinders from restaurants and dhabas here today. Restaurants and dhaba owners were using domestic LPG in place of commercial LPG, which is a violation of the Essential Commodities Act.

Raids and surprise checks are being conducted by the department of food and civil supplies to curtail the ongoing malpractices of LPG dealers, including black marketing.

A large number of LPG dealers are selling domestic cooking gas to commercial establishments, thereby making extra money, while some dealers are selling cooking gas for Rs 450-Rs 650 to domestic consumers against the subsidised rate of Rs 325 per cylinder.

The District Food and Supplies Officer, Sajjan Singh, senior sales official of Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Limited (HPCL) along with a team of inspectors from the DFSC department, raided the premises of the restaurants and dhabas.

The Controller, District Food and Civil Supplies, Ludhiana (W), RK Bhaskar, said the raids would be carried out throughout winter to deter LPG dealers from cheating consumers.

“The offenders would not be spared and we are taking the help of the police to register FIRs against the dealers guilty of violating the Essential Commodities Act,” the DFSC added.



IT raid on shop
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 12
The excise and taxation department conducted raids under the supervision of Assistant Excise and Taxation Commissioner Tejbir Singh Sidhu.

A shop at Bhai Manna Singh Nagar was raided and it was found that groundnuts had been purchased without paying the 4 per cent tax levied on it. Stock verification was done and documents were checked by the department.

In another raid conducted by the department following a tip off, a truck carrying machinery parts worth Rs 14 lakh was impounded at Gill Kalan village. The truck was coming from Chennai while the bill was from Himachal Pradesh. Heavy penalty would be levied on the truck owner.



Residents approach CM against cattle menace
Gurdeep Singh Mann
Tribune News Service

Khamano, January 12
A number of residents of Sanghol and adjoining villages have approached the Chief Minister against the cattle menace in their villages. They had written about the problem to the local administration and also given a representation to the Deputy Commissioner recently, but to no avail.

In a letter to the Chief Minister, Sumeetpal Singh and other villagers said some villagers had tied animals in an unauthorised manner in village streets, which caused inconvenience to passersby.

The streets were filled with cow dung, making the streets slippery and difficult to negotiate for the elderly and children, besides leading to the blockage of drains.

“Walking in the streets has become a nightmare for the elderly and children, who fail to notice potholes due to the water all around,” said Harman.

He said there had been instances of animals passing excreta and urine on passersby and most schoolchildren and office-goers had to either change their clothes or take a longer route.

The dirty water had become breeding grounds for mosquitoes, especially during the rain, causing the spread of various communicable diseases.

Villagers had encroached upon streets by tying their animals there, said area residents, adding that as people parked their vehicles on the streets, it had become impossible to cross the streets with vehicles on one side and animals on the other.

Villagers had also damaged newly laid streets by digging handpumps and submersible pumps, which occupied portions of streets and caused inconvenience.

Some accidents had been reported in the recent past due to this illegal encroachments by some influential families.

The newly constructed streets had got damaged due to the stagnant water and illegal laying of pumps.

Despite repeated requests to the panchayat and sarpanch, no action had been initiated in this regard.

Sumeetpal alleged that the panchayat did not ask people to remove their animals as they used to seek votes from them at the time of elections.

The Deputy Commissioner had forwarded the complaint to officials concerned for a solution to the problem a few months back, but no action was ever initiated.



‘Declare hurling shoes, knickers an offence’
Mahesh Sharma

Mandi Ahmedgarh, January 12
Disturbed over the increased incidence of hurling articles like footwear, trousers and bottles filled with dirty water or urine on hate targets, activists and office-bearers of certain organisations have demanded that such acts be declared an offence.

The resentment prevailing among members of these organisations for the last many months has been triggered by the recent incidents of throwing urine-filled and sand-filled missiles during public gatherings at Dirba and a pair of khaki knickers on SGPC president Avtar Singh Makkar in Haryana.

Government employees and cops are also upset over the tendency as they are supposed to attend all such functions as part of their official duty.

The growing tendency of expressing anguish against a leader by throwing an article on him during a public function has upset members of almost all communities, irrespective of their political or religious affiliation.

With an intent to bring end to the alleged offensive tendency, activists and office-bearers of a few organisations of this part of Malwa have demanded the declaration of such acts as an offence, irrespective of the physical harm caused to the target or those sitting along with him or her.

In a communique addressed to the Prime Minister and the President, the office-bearers have demanded constitutional amendments, allowing the authorities to initiate legal action against anyone who tries to express his annoyance in any such manner that involves physical action.

Showing concern over the situation, Tarsem Garg, an office-bearer of a social welfare organisation here, has lamented that a number of youths, in an inebriated condition, had thrown bottles filled with dirty water and human urine towards a stage at Dirba, where a Punjabi singer was presenting his programme, while other youths used their caps filled with sand and mud and shoes as their tools for expressing anger.

None of the crude missiles hit the target, but hundreds of music lovers, organisers and cops on duty had to face the brunt of these weapons.

Terming the recent incident of hurling of a pair of knickers on Makkar an insult to the Sikh community, Jagjit Singh Jajjie, patron of the Kalgidhar Federation, stated that the fear of strict action could bring and end to such malpractices.



They forget stars, look into eyes here
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 12
The Nehru Planetarium at the Rose Garden here, once known as the astronomic land of the city, has turned into dating hot spot. Couples visiting the Rose Garden have been taking shelter at the planetarium for dating in the chilly weather.

As the world gears up to watch the year’s first solar eclipse on January 15, the city’s lone planetarium at the Rose Garden has nothing to offer on the occasion.

The planetarium authorities have been planning to arrange a telescope on January 15, but the municipal corporation has not give its nod to the proposal, according to sources.

It seems that even the municipal corporation officials are happy with the notoriety of the place as a dating spot.

Established in 1987 with an expenditure of crores, the planetarium depicts a perfect picture of neglect and stands as an apt victim of departmental ignorance.

Once considered an asset, the planetarium has been reduced to a mere building and has nothing to offer to science students.

Constructed to develop a scientific temper among the people, particularly students, by way of displaying various astronomic phenomena and scientific processes, it has been reduced to a concrete structure.

A notice board displays the show timings as 10:15 am and 11:15 am on weekdays and 3:15 pm and 4:15 pm on holidays.

According to a worker, it has been weeks since they have received students and instead, couples throng the place.

Narinder Singh, supervising the planetarium, says a projector of good quality is required urgently to run the planetarium.

Sources say a new projector will cost Rs 2 crore, but the municipal corporation is not in the mood to spend this amount.

Narinder says they have made all possible efforts get a telescope worth between Rs 7 lakh and Rs 8 lakh installed, but the department has not agreed to it.



Chill keeps kites off sky
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 12
Weather seems to be playing spoilsport with Lohri revellers this time. With chilly winds blowing in the region for the past several days and mercury staying low, not many kites are being flown by residents in the city.

Shopkeepers who used to make a quick buck during these days are virtually sitting idle in the absence of buyers. Seeing little demand for kites in the markets, shopkeepers have started selling kites and strings at discounted rates to woo buyers.

Surinder Singh, a wholesale dealer near Daresi Grounds, said shopkeepers used to make several lakhs of rupees during Lohri festivities.

Residents, especially children, used to purchase kites and strings much in advance and the sky used to be full of kites of different shapes and shades.

However, this time there were no buyers. Parents were not letting children go out in the open for flying kites due to intense cold wave.

“The tradition of flying kites begins almost 10 days in advance. This Lohri, there is no enthusiasm among youngsters. Everyone wants to remain indoor due to the chill. The bad weather has affected our business. We are going to bear huge losses this season. But one cannot fight with god or destiny,” rued the shopkeeper.

Jagat Ram, another shopkeeper at Ghumar Mandi, said in the absence of bright, sunny days, kites were being dampened.

He said: “Last year, I managed good returns in just one week prior to Lohri. Things are totally the opposite this time. We cannot even keep the stocks (kites and strings) for long. I had purchased a huge stock from wholesale dealers almost 20 days ago. Barring some, the entire stuff is lying with me. I want to sell as much as I can and for this, I have started offering heavy discount to buyers,” complained Jagat Ram, adding that there seemed to be no relief from cold in the coming days.

Meanwhile, Anshul Gupta, a student of class IX of a local school, said he had passion for flying kites the bad weather had dampened his spirits.

“Due to biting cold, my mother does not let me fly kites. I pray that sun will appear tomorrow and we can enjoy the festival in its true spirit,” he said.



Motorists grapple with smog
Tribune News Service

Mandi Gobindgarh, January 12
After being developed into a major steel town, Mandi Gobindgarh has also become one of the most polluted towns of the country.

Beside a large work force suffering from various respiratory disorders, including tuberculosis, asthma, etc. commuters complain of poor visibility on the GT Road due to smog emanating from industrial units.

“Commuters from Delhi, Chandigarh and other cities of Punjab and Haryana have to pass through the township to reach their respective destinations. Travellers frequently come across smog while passing through the area,” says Amrit Rishi, a resident of Chandigarh.

He says some of his relatives from Delhi had complained of smog soon after crossing Sirhind en route to Amritsar a few days ago.

Their vehicle moved at a snail’s pace and met with two accidents within a 15-km stretch due to poor visibility.

Daily commuters rue that besides dense smog, a large number of trucks and cranes can be seen parked haphazardly on the highway, creating chaos on the road and jeopardising the lives of thousands of motorists on the highway.

Recently, four members of a family from Jammu were killed in an accident after the car they were travelling in rammed into a stationary truck due to low visibility here.

“Seldom does the police award challan to truck drivers who park their vehicles on the road without switching on indicators or reflectors,” says Tarsem, a local resident.

He says such irresponsible behaviour often puts lives of motorists travelling on the GT Road at stake.

Busy intersections, including the local bus stand, railway road and roads connecting GT Road, are hotspots for accidents.

“Whenever a VIP cavalcade passes through the town, traffic policemen wake up from slumber and streamline traffic for a few hours. However, after that life again comes to a standstill,” alleges Subhash, a local resident.

The local residents have demanded a permanent solution to the problem by putting in place curbs on the industry to minimise pollution levels.



Ayali to head district health panel
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, January 12
The department of health and family welfare has constituted a state health monitoring and planning committee to promote community participation in health planning and monitoring initiatives in the state.

The committee constituted under a Punjab government notification will have 24 members with state health and family welfare minister as its chairman and principal secretary of the department of health and family welfare as its co-chairman.

Besides, Manpreet Singh Ayali will be the chairman of Ludhiana district.

People representatives, including legislatures, voluntary social organisations in the field, representatives of alternative medical remedies and other welfare departments of the state will also find a place in the committee.

The aim of the committee will be to supervise the activities of the state health mission, including its programmes and police related issues, and suggest necessary changes for the development of state health plan to achieve national-level health mission in the state, address various issues that cannot be resolved at the department level, including recruitment policy, budgetary allocations, etc.

The committee will also be responsible for instituting a redressal mechanism at all levels of the health system, review summary report in a time-bound manner and take action in response to inquiry reports conducted by various departments.

The committee will also look into the recommendations of the national health resources centre to actualise the right to healthcare at the state level. It will also be responsible for acting on information received from the central government and sharing its achievements with it, including documents.

The meetings of the committee will be held quarterly and will take into consideration reports of various health committees, periodic assessment reports by various task forces or committees and national health resources recommendations and its implementation status.



Blood group directory soon: BJYM
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, January 12
The Bharatiya Janata Yuva Morcha (BJYM), the youth wing of the BJP, has taken up the task of compiling a blood group directory to provide detailed information of voluntary blood donors of different groups.

The directory will come in handy for those in need of blood in cases of critical illness or other emergencies.

Stating this at a function organised to celebrate the birth anniversary of Swami Vivekanand, which was observed as National Youth Day at the BJP office here today, BJYM president Sandeep Kapoor said every worker of the party was committed to following in the footsteps of Swami Vivekanand and serving the country.

The work for compilation of the directory was launched with the party workers getting their blood groups checked by a pathologist and providing their contact details on the spot for inclusion in the directory.

Kapoor said on completion, the directory would formally be handed over to state BJP president Rajinder Bhandari and a copy would be available at the party office here so that needy persons could contact donors for the particular blood group.

Those present included state vice-president Jeewan Gupta, Kantendu Sharma, Sumeet Tandon, Lalit Garg, Hakikat Bassi, Amrik Singh Mika, Aman Sharma, Rajat Gogna, Deepu Jain, Harish Arora, Rakesh Mittal, Prince Bhandari, Kuldip Parashar, Mani Bhatia, Anmol Sandhu and Jatinder Sharma.



Simplify licence procedure, says councillor
Kuldip Bhatia

Ludhiana, January 12
A councillor and secretary of the Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee, Parminder Mehta, has urged the district administration to simplify the procedure for procuring a learner’s driving licence in the wake of problems being faced by the public at the Suvidha Centre at the mini secretariat here.

In a communication to the Deputy Commissioner, Mehta said the staff of the district transport officer deployed for this purpose at the Suvidha Centre was not accepting documents in support of age and residence, as displayed on the notice board for getting a new licence.

“There are complaints from applicants that the staff does not accept copies of PAN card, bank pass book, water rate bill, arms licence or certificate attested by councillors in the city or the sarpanch in case of rural applicants as proof of age or place of residence even though the documents are listed as valid in the instructions put on the notice board,” he stated.

He said also the applications by government employees, certified by officials, were also being rejected. He asked the DC to take up the matter with transport officials and ensure that the procedure was simplified and no ambiguity remained.

He also said a counter should be set up for the payment of licence fee at the Suvidha Centre so that the applicants could complete all the formalities under one roof.



From Schools & Colleges
Lohri celebrated with fervour
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 12
The pre-primary wing of Guru Nanak International Senior Secondary Public School celebrated Lohri in a very traditional way here today. The tiny-tots sat around the bonfire and danced to Punjabi hit numbers.

They enjoyed themselves by eating rewries, gachak and groundnuts. The story of Dulla Bhatti was narrated to the students. Principal G Gill, headmistress C Paul and co-ordinator Abhineet Sarna also enjoyed with the children and blessed them.

Sportking Institute

The students, staff and management of Sportking Institute of Fashion Technology celebrated Lohri with fervour on the institute premises by lighting a bonfire.

Poems and songs were recited in praise of one of the heroes of Punjab, Dulha Bhatti, who used to help the poor and fought for their rights. Punjabi numbers further set the mood for dance performances to the beat of popular numbers and Punjabi dhol.

Rising flames of bonfire, colourful attires, giddha, bhangra, dandiya, peanuts and variety of sweets marked the celebration. The students sang “sunder mundriye”. Lohri folk songs, dance items and giddha performances charmed the occasion.

The students had a gala time as they danced around the bonfire and offered prayers for the prosperity of the nation.

USPC Jain School

The children of USPC Jain Public School celebrated Lohri today with great enthusiasm. The children of kindergarten were dressed up in colourful traditional clothes. They also participated in various activities and tapped their feet on different Punjabi songs to celebrate the festival. Ramp modelling was done by tiny tots. In the end bonfire was set, around which children and teachers danced.

Mothers’ Pride

Festivals are special occasions at Mothers’ Pride Junior as the school believes that children need to be aware of rich culture and need to respect them. Keeping this in mind, Lohri was organised with pleasure and enjoyment for the tiny tots at the school.

Entire school was beautifully decorated with kites, adding to the ambience of the festival. Children dressed up in Punjabi dresses enjoyed the feel of the entire festival. The celebrations began with music to get the children into the festival mood.

Children enjoyed praying and dancing on Lohri songs around the bonfire and also watched kite flying in the school. Children enjoyed doing kiklee and bhangra.

The children were distributed peanuts, rewri, popcorns, sweets and kites by the school. The director of the school, Maidhavi Soi, congratulated the children and the parents on the festival.

BCM School

Lohri was celebrated at BCM School, Dugri, with a lot of fanfare. The students were totally absorbed in the festive spirit. Students arrived at the school in traditional dresses. The function started with speech on the history and significance of Lohri by Anupreet of class VII.

The girls danced to the tune of Punjabi songs. Giddha was also performed by the girls of Classes VIII and IX.

Students sang folk song “sunder munderiye” along with dhol. Principal Dr Vandna Shahi wished the students on this occasion.

Ram Lal Bhasin School

The children had a gala time at Ram Lal Bhasin Public School as they danced around the holy bonfire and offered their prayers for the prosperity of the nation. Rupali, Akriti, Himani, Alisha, Shreya, Anjana, Astha, Mehak and Abhishek sung the Lohri song “sunder munderiye” and everybody cheered them up.

They also enjoyed the traditional eatables of Lohri. The headmistress of the school, Tarannum Fatma, wished all students on this occasion.

Scholarships for poor

Since its inception, the Senior Citizens’ Conclave has been actively engaged in the philanthropic activities for uplifting the poor and needy. Five-year-old Senior Citizens’ Conclave started its journey in 2005 and was zealously forging ahead as a successful non-governmental organisation truly wedded to its aims and objectives.

The conclave has succeeded in promoting fellowship, goodwill and mutual respect among its members, yet it has not lagged behind in serving social causes.

It has very meticulously floated scholarship schemes, which now benefit 79 meritorious students from the deprived segment of society. The conclave distributed scholarships worth Rs 2,13,000 to students today.

Book fair at BCM

A book fair has been organised at BCM Arya Model Senior Secondary School in association with Scholastic India. The fair was inaugurated by RB Khanna -- the school treasurer.

The fair has been organised to inculcate reading habits among children and to expose them to the world of books to get better knowledge. A wide range of books on fiction, non-fiction, fairy tales, puzzles, self-development and time management were on display.

Academic books moved off the shelves quite fast on the very first day. Falling in line with academic books, dictionaries and thesaurus also retained their top position among the students.

Besides, various activities were conducted class-wise during the fair.

Dharna at KLSD

The members of local unit of the PCCTU at Kamla Lohtia SD College staged a dharna against non-implementation of 6th pay panel recommendations by the managing committee. The dharna was earlier staged on January 7 and 9 as per the directions of the union.

The members decided to continue a two-period dharna (4th & 5th period) in all those colleges where revised pay scales had not been implemented till January 16. Prof Rohit Kumar, unit president, requested the managing committee to implement the revised scales so that crucial time during examinations was not wasted.



Sonia declared Miss Fresher
Our Correspondent

SoniaJagraon, January 12
The students of GHG Harparkash College of Education at Sidhwan Khurd today organised a colourful cultural programme to welcome the freshers of BEd and MEd courses.

After the welcome address by principal Dr Baljit Kaur Gill, in which she assured the best services and facilities to the students on the college campus, the students presented a variety of programmes, including solo dance, group dances, folk songs, skits and mimicry.

The judges adjudged Sonia as Miss Fresher while Simarjeet Kaur and Jaspreet Kaur were declared first and second runners up, respectively.

Kanwarpreet Kaur was designated with the title of Miss Beautiful Smile, Gurpreet Kaur was declared Miss Beautiful Hair and Ranveer Kaur was declared Miss Elegant.



Labourer dies of asphyxiation
Our Correspondent

Mullanpur Dakha, January 12
A labourer reportedly died of asphyxiation at Humbran today. The deceased has been identified as Bal Krishan (40). He along with one other had lit fire in the room last night to keep warm. The room did not have any ventilation.

They inhaled poisonous gases as they slept. Bal Krishan died while the other victim had a narrow escape as he was taken to a nearby hospital for treatment. The police visited the site to investigate the death and found it to be an accidental death.



Mishap victim dies at hospital
Our Correspondent

Raikot, January 12
The Raikot police yesterday registered a case against the driver of an unidentified vehicle for killing a rickshaw-cart-puller. The accident took place near the Binjal village, near here, on the Jagraon road on December 31, injuring the rickshaw-cart-puller seriously.

The victim, Mukand Singh (40) of Roomi village, used to collect scrap and sell it to shopkeepers for a living.

He had slipped into coma as a result of the head injuries suffered in the accident. His relatives took him to Chandigarh, where he succumbed to his injuries yesterday.

The police, on the basis of the statement of Tersem Singh, brother-in-law of the victim, registered a case under Sections 279, 337, 427 and 304-A of the IPC.



Gang of snatchers busted, 3 held
Our Correspondent

Raikot, January 12
The police has busted a gang of snatchers by arresting its three members here.

Jalaldiwal police post in-charge Mohan Das said the three — Daljit Singh of Chand Bhan village, near Jaito; Gurdeep Chand of Chauke village, near Rampur Phool; and Sukhpal Singh, alias Piara, of Phool village in Bathinda district — were planning to target an employee of Jain petrol pump, who used to take cash of the station to the bank. During routine patrol, they noticed the suspects hanging around near the petrol station in a suspicious manner. When they approached them, the accused tried to flee but were overpowered. The three were found to be in possession of knives.

A case against has been registered under Sections 25, 54 and 59 of the Arms Act at the Raikot police station.



Firing at Function
2 booked for injuring girl
Our Correspondent

Khamano, January 12
The local police has registered a case against two persons for firing a shot that hit an orchestra girl at Baur village, near here.

According to sources, a programme to celebrate Lohri had been organised at the house of Inderjeet Singh where dancers of an orchestra group had been engaged to perform.

Inderjeet Singh and his cousin Sulakhan Singh, a resident of Jhammat village, while dancing fired in the air from a revolver and a shot hit a dancer. She was admitted to the DMC, Ludhiana.

The doctor removed the cartridge from the body of the girl. The police has registered a case on the statement of the victim, identified as Sunaina, against Inderjeet Singh and Sulakhan Singh under Sections 308 and 336, IPC. The accused are at large.



Man held with 2 kg charas
Our Correspondent

Raikot, January 12
The local police arrested a drug-peddler and seized 2 kg charas from his possession here on Sunday.

Davinder Singh, in-charge of Lohatbaddi police post, arrested the accused — Naveen Kumar Rajput, alias Bittu, — of Dharu village in the Sirmaur district of Himachal Pradesh on the basis of a tip-off.

Naveen was arrested from Kalsian village, near government school, on the Sultan Khan village road when he was going on foot.

Shahi Ram Rajput, his father, had also been arrested by the police along with a huge haul of hashish from his possession a few years ago. The police has booked the accused under Sections 20, 61 and 85, NDPS Act.



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