L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


10 kg IED recovered from abandoned car
Mohit Khanna/Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 25
Around 10 kg of improvised explosive device (IED) was found from an abandoned car at Halwara near the Air Force base last night. The IED was recovered at around 8 pm when the police received information about an abandoned white Maruti car on the roadside.

The police impounded the vehicle and found a canister containing 1 kg of nails, 12 kg sulphur powder and 5 litres of petrol. The canister was lying in the boot of the car. Two electric wires coming out of the canister were connected with the battery of the car. The police then towed the car to the police station instead of starting it. The chassis number of the car had been erased and the police suspected that it bore a fake number plate as well.

IG Sanjiv Kalra said following the recovery of the explosive, the security had been further tightened. Additional security had also been deployed in sensitive areas.

Intelligence agencies had expressed concern about a possible terror strike during the Republic Day function in the city, which would be attended by the Chief Minister.

Security has been tightened at the railway station and other key locations of the city. Police check posts have been set up at all entry and exit points of the city and all vehicles are being checked. Elaborate security arrangements have been made at SCD Government College, the venue for the R-Day function.

Three-tier security arrangements have been made for the safety of VIPs and residents. Every block would be headed by an SP-rank officer. Cops in mufti would also be deployed in crowded areas. Checks were also being carried out at the bus stand, the railway station and other crowded places, the SSP stated.


Underage drivers add to traffic chaos
Charu Chhibber
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 25
Thrill-seeking youngsters, most of them in their teens, zipping across lanes on busy streets on their motorbikes and in cars, have become a common sight in the city. The growing menace of underage driving is now fast assuming alarming proportions.

The reason is quite simple: Over the years society appears to have become more complacent about the phenomenon. While the law has by and large failed to check underage drivers who feel it is "cool" to drive fast, parents, many of them well-to-do and hard pressed for time, have virtually encouraged their "spoilt brats" by handing over two-wheelers and cars to them at a young age. What they have failed to realize, however, is that by doing so they are not only risking the lives of their wards but of others too.

Said Parul Sharma, a city resident said: "Parents are wholly and solely to be blamed for promoting underage driving as the kids are neither trained nor authorised to drive."

"They’re a great nuisance on the streets. One can spot so many of them anywhere one goes, zooming past speeding vehicles, breaking traffic rules, honking like crazy, teasing people on the way and being the cause of numerous road accidents, often fatal ones," said another resident, Preeti Dyal. “The problem is particularly severe on streets near schools”, she adds.

School authorities, too, cannot be spared the responsibility of checking underage driving. However, a number of school officials Ludhiana Tribune talked to expressed their helplessness in checking underage driving.

"In spite of the fact that most city schools don’t allow their students to bring in any vehicle, many of them manage to drive away to glory without a licence by finding new ways to evade punishment. The most common way is to park their vehicles in nearby public places or markets," they revealed. Parents, too, help by getting fake driving license made for the children, they said.

Unfortunately, numerous ‘challaning’ (imposition of fines) drives, ‘awareness campaigns’ and rallies by the city traffic police have failed to bear fruit.

"There is an urgent need to create awareness among parents to curb the menace of underage driving and to hold regular ‘challaning’ drives in schools," remarked DSP (traffic) Harmohan Singh.

Experts say

Studies reveal teen drivers aged 16 to 19 years are four times more likely to crash than their older counterparts. They are more likely to speed, jump red lights, take dangerous turns and drive after consuming alcohol or drugs. They are also more prone to road rage and overexcitement and are incapable of making split-second decisions.

The law says

According to the Motor Vehicles Act, 1988, no person under the age of 18 years shall drive a motor vehicle in any public place. A motorcycle without gears may be driven in a public place by a person only after attaining the age of 16 years. In case of an accident involving underage drivers, the father of the driver or/and the vehicle owner are liable to be booked under appropriate sections of the Indian Penal Code.



Winds of change blow at Jarkhar
50 girls overcome resistance, hone basketball skills
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

The cagers of Jarkhar village; and (inset) the warden Ruldu Singh.
The cagers of Jarkhar village; and (inset) the warden Ruldu Singh. A Tribune photograph

Ludhiana, January 25
Winds of change have started blowing at Jarkhar village, sports once known to be a male bastion is fast losing its ground. Now the villagers are encouraging girls to take part in sports.

But the journey has not been so easy for the organisers of the Jharkhar rural games, says Jagroop Jarkhar. They had to face stiff resistance from the girls’ parents. Even convincing them was not an easy task.

The village received lots of criticism for not promoting women sports and all efforts to attract girls towards the sports did not receive encouraging response.

It was after the combine effort of sports promoters like Teja Singh Dhaliwal and Jagroop Jarkhar that a basketball wing exclusively for the girls of the village was set up.

The effort bore fruit and presently at least 50 cager girls are honing their basketball skills in the academy.

The government school situated in the village also chipped in and supported the cause. The school allowed the organisers to run a basketball wing in the school.

Parvinder Kaur, a Class VII student, said her parents were reluctant to allow her to join the academy. “I am the only girl among the four siblings. My father is a farm labourer and mother takes care of the home. It was after a stiff resistance they allowed me to study and joining a basketball wing was out of consideration. Hell broke lose when I went to play basketball one day, my mother thrashed me. But my teachers, along with warden Ruldu Singh, managed to convince my parents. Now, it is going to be a year and everything is going fine,” she added.

The story of Navjot and Sarabjit Kaur, both studying in Class X of the government school, was no different. Their dreams of playing basketball were also snubbed by their parents, but the rural game organisers managed to pursue the girls’ parents.

“Whenever our father, who is a farm labourer, come to watch the game we put double effort to show him how good we are doing in the sport,” said the sister duo.

Teja Singh Dhaliwal, general secretary, Punjab Basketball Association, said: “Majority of the girls are from humble background and if they manage to get a good job on the basis of their game then they could uplift the financial status of their family.”

Ruldu Singh, warden of the boy’s hockey wing, said: “I personally used to visit the house of each girl and talk to their parents to allow their wards to take part in the sport. Though I was rebuked at times, this did not discourage me to continue my struggle for women empowerment.”



Appointment of Registrar by MC chief illegal
Jyotika Sood
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 25
The appointment of PCS officer Mahinder Pal Gupta as Registrar, Birth and Death, of the MC by Municipal Commissioner AK Sinha is “illegal” as the latter has no power to make an appointment to the post.

According to information, under Section 7 (1) of the Registration of Birth and Death Act only the Punjab government is authorised to make the appointment.

Sources in the civic body revealed that Assistant Commissioner Mahinder Pal Gupta had taken over the office and was working “conditionally”. The PCS officer was refusing cases related to the correction of names and late registration of birth that was causing inconvenience to residents.

Under Section 13(3) of the Act, the birth registration beyond a year is liable to be forwarded to the District Magistrate through the Registrar. But the officer was not doing so fearing the way adopted for his appointment.

Apart from it, Gupta was even refusing issuance of certificates on directions of the SDM because of his illegal appointment.

Employees working in the department said: “People urge us to help them, but we cannot convince the Municipal Commissioner to revert his orders and request the Punjab government to do so. The department, particularly the public, is suffering due to the appointment.”

Senior Deputy Mayor Praveen Bansal said: “The department of birth and death registration needs a person who is honest and dedicated, so Gupta was appointed.”

He added that the MC was planning to computerise the branch. As far as the appointment of Gupta is concerned, I would comment only after inquiring into it.”

The Municipal Commissioner said: “The matter has been already referred to the Punjab government for approval. The notification would be made soon by the government and there is no problem at all with Mahinder Pal attending the office. He has been appointed so residents don’t have to suffer in the absence of the Registrar.”



Advertisers flout norms as MC sleeps
Gurminder Singh Grewal

Samrala, January 25
The advertisements of private companies, tournaments and even conferences on important public places has become a common sight and perhaps the directions of the high court and other law enforcing agencies are meant only for common people.

Though the high court has banned the display of advertisements on public places and has directed to remove hoardings on main roads, politicians and workers of the political parties do not care for the orders.

The public place signboards are covered with the posters of top leaders, mainly of ruling party, in the event of conferences. In Samrala city the main sign boards showing the directions of nearby cities are covered with the posters of the ruling party.

There are also hoardings and signboards showing the advertisement of mobile phone companies, service operators and Bollywood actors. An important signboard meant for showing directions is covered by a private company Kalsi showing the advertisements of mixers and grinders.

When an outsider reaches near the main chowk he fails to seek his destination and has to enquire from passers-by to reach his place. Although several officials pass through this main chowk everyday, they fail to notice these signboards.



Sewer spill near Raikhi Cinema irks residents
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 25
For the past few days residents as well as shopkeepers of the area around Raikhi cinema have been fretting over an overflowing sewer that is emitting a foul smell and giving pedestrians a tough time.

Speaking to The Tribune, some shopkeepers averred, "This stretch, which had been transformed into a beautiful green area full of plants by the theatre owner, Vikas Raikhi, has now been sullied by an overflowing sewer. The municipal corporation, terming those plants as an encroachment, asked Raikhi to remove them. As a result passers by can now be seen relieving themselves there."

The shopkeepers said the stagnant water in the area was also posing health hazards as mosquitoes had begun to breed.

"We’ve asked area councillor Parminder Mehta to get the sewer repaired but to no avail. When MC officials were approached to rectify the flaws they responded by saying they were busy with the Republic Day function as the chief minister was coming to the city," said residents.

One of them pointed out due to the dense fog during the past few days pedestrians and also two-wheeler drivers often ignored the stretch. "Only last night my kid fell into the stagnant water while he was riding his bike," said one, adding, “the civic body should be vigilant enough to know where its services are required”. 



Pawar slammed for price rise
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, January 25
The Punjab Pradesh Aggarwal Sammelan has slammed union agriculture minister Sharad Pawar for unprecedented rise in prices of essential commodities, charging him with being hand in glove with hoarders and profiteers.

Addressing mediapersons here yesterday, body’s state president Amrit Lal Aggarwal said Pawar had manipulated the increase in sugar prices due to his proximity to the lobby of producers and now the minister intended to do to milk what he had earlier done to sugar.

He demanded a probe, preferable by the CBI, to expose the nexus between Pawar and producers of sugar and milk.

Attributing the rising prices to the wrong policies of the central government, the sammelan chief asked Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal to bring chief ministers of states ruled by parties other than the Congress on one platform and lead a nationwide protest against skyrocketing prices of items of daily need.

Aggarwal criticised the Congress MPs for their studied silence over inflation in both houses of the Parliament as well as closing their eyes to development in Punjab, which was suffering due to the indifferent attitude of the union government.

“In stark contrast, SAD MP Harsimrat Badal stands out among the Punjab MPs to raise a strong voice on several key matters concerning the people of Punjab.”

He took strong exception to threats issued by MNS leader Raj Thackeray to non-Marathi taxi drivers, saying this was an anti-national act and Thackeray ought to be put behind bars for such reckless utterances.

Aggarwal also took the union government to task for continued attacks on Indians in Australia.

Among others, Surinder Gupta, Ved Prakash Gupta, Kuldeep Singla, Rajinder Gupta, Rakesh Gupta, Praveen Gupta and Sunil Jindal were also present.



Move to introduce new police system hailed
KS Chawla

Ludhiana, January 25
The Punjab government’s decision to introduce the police commissionerate system in three cities, namely, Ludhiana, Jalandhar and Amritsar, has been welcomed by residents who hope it will help in bringing down the rising crime graph in the state’s industrial hub. It is also felt vehicular traffic and crowd control will become easier to manage.

The Tribune has been campaigning for introducing the system in Ludhiana in particular in view of its haphazard growth and the phenomenal rise in the population. The city’s complexion has completely changed with the influx of a huge number of migrant workers from other states, who are now the backbone of its industrial economy. Besides, about a million Muslims reside here with madrasas having mushroomed all over the city.

The clashes between the police and migrant labourers on December 3 and 4 has left unpleasant memories and efforts are still being made to create a 
harmonious atmosphere in the city.

With a population of about four million Ludhiana has been hamstrung by inadequate deployment of police personnel and needs at least 10,000 policemen as against the present strength of only 2,500.

The introduction of the commissionerate system will vest more magisterial powers with the police like declaring a crowd unlawful and take preventive action under Sections 107 &151 (apprehension of breach of peace). At present an executive magistrate has to accompany the police force to deal with a crowd indulging in unlawful activities.

The police commissioner will be assisted by three to four deputy commissioners who will be of the rank of SSP. The commissioner of police will have at least DCP (headquarters), DCP (crime) and DCP (traffic), and there can also be a DCP (special branch).

Welcoming the government’s move, DR Bhatti, who retired as DGP from the Punjab police, congratulated Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal for his “far sighted decision”. He was of the view that this system would help in improving policing as well as curbing activities of “antisocial elements”.

Senior Punjab police officials now serving the state have also hailed the decision and feel introduction of the new system would bring the police “closer” to the public. They were unanimous in saying “the success of the system would depend on the leader of the police force in the commissionerate”.

It may be mentioned here that the proposal for the appointment of police commissioners was first mooted in 1990 when Julio Ribeiro was heading the police force fighting militancy in Punjab. KPS Gill even appointed SS Sani as the first commissioner of police in Ludhiana in 1992 but the decision could not be implemented in full. The IAS lobby has been opposing the commissionerate system tooth and nail.



Healthcare gets easy with home delivery
Anshu Seth
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 25
With introduction of newer concepts and ideas in the field of healthcare, availability of medicines and facility of tests at the doorstep has become a blessing for the sick and elderly who are unable to move out on their own.

Laboratories, including SRL Ranbaxy, Dr Lal’s Path lab and various other private laboratories of the reputed hospitals, are providing doorstep facilities for the tests. Samples to check liver profile, thyroid profile, lipid profile and blood sugar level, haemoglobin, uric acid, platelet count and for various other tests are collected from homes of the clients.

Putting an end to the worries of the elderly couples who are living alone, the representatives of these laboratories reach their respective residences even in early hours as many tests have to be conducted in fasting. Bhagwan Das (67), a retired government official, says: “I am living alone with my wife as my son is working in Mumbai. We both are diabetics and heart patients, thus we think twice before going out. The tests by Ranbaxy at home followed by their online reports came as a boon.”

Similarly, a positive change is evident as far as drug stores in the city are concerned as the concept of home delivery of medicines introduced by some retail chains initially is being adopted by the local chemists also.

The retail chemists who were earlier oblivious to the needs of the patients are becoming customer friendly as they are facing competition from the new genre retailers who serve with humility.

As Parvinder, owner of a drug store in Model Town, says: “I studied finance in Canada but chose to open up drug store in Ludhiana on the concept of shopper’s drug marts in Canada. Soon I will start with the home delivery of the medicines.”

We are giving 10 per cent discount on medicines to be sold on prescription, 50 per cent on general medicines and 6 per cent on OTC products so as to give benefit to people as there is a lot margin in healthcare products, adds Parvinder. 



Anti-Encroachment Drives
Shopkeepers, slum-dwellers meet Bansal
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 25
Around 200 slum-dwellers and shopkeepers of Dholewal Chowk today met with senior deputy mayor Praveen Bansal and asked him to save them from the civic body’s anti-encroachment drives.

The shopkeepers said: “We had been trading here for the past few years and the place was allotted to us by former MC commissioner SK Sharma. If we are removed from this place, our families will die of hunger, as we have no other place for trading.”

Also, residents living in slums met with Bansal, urging him to spare them. “We do not have any houses and the government is unwilling to provide us with any assistance. Where will we go with small kids in this chilly weather,” said a woman who was part of the group of people queued up.

The shopkeepers and slum-dwellers were of the opinion that if the government could not provide them with facilities like work or residence, it had no right to take it away from them.

“No body likes to live or sit on the street but we have to because we have no other choice. Let the municipal corporation make booths on vacant land and allow us to trade from there. We have no objection. But the problem is there is no will,” said Lal Chand, who could not meet the senior deputy mayor.

“These politicians visit us during elections and except assurances they deliver nothing,” said Lal Chand’s friend Ramesh, who has migrated from Bihar and sells clothes on footpath.

The senior deputy mayor said: “I have heard various problems of these people and after having discussions with MC commissioner AK Sinha, we will find a solution. I’ll try to address every grievance.”



Manch threatens stir over quota
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, January 25
Demanding the rejection of Justice Rang Nath Mishra report on providing reservation to minorities, including Dalit Muslims and Christians, the Scheduled Castes Reservation Bachao Manch has threatened a nationwide agitation, including chakka jam and rail jam if the government persisted with any move to dilute 15 per cent reservation to the SCs.

Addressing a rally organised by the manch at the mini secretariat here today, its state convener, Vijay Sampla, alleged that the government had ignored the sentiments of the SCs by pressing the presentation of the report before Parliament despite resistance by the affected sections.

The speakers asserted that the recommendations made in the report would dilute the constitutional concessions granted to the SCs, and would also create fissures among various sections of the Scheduled Castes as well. Manch leaders submitted a memorandum to the Deputy Commissioner for onward transmission to the President.



Schools celebrate R-Day
Tribune News Service

Tiny tots of GMT Public School dress up as Pt Jawaharlal Nehru and Mahatma Gandhi during the Republic Day celebrations in Ludhiana on Monday
Tiny tots of GMT Public School dress up as Pt Jawaharlal Nehru and Mahatma Gandhi during the Republic Day celebrations in Ludhiana on Monday. A Tribune photograph 

Ludhiana, January 25
Children of Everest Play-Way and Nursery Wing of Everest Public Senior Secondary School, Moti Nagar, celebrated the Republic Day here today with great fervour. Tiny tots came beautifully dressed. Asha Sharma, principal, informed the students about the importance of the day.

Rajinder Sharma, president, Association of the Punjab School Education Board Affiliated Schools, Punjab, presided over the function. A mesmerising programme of songs, dances and skits was presented. A march past was also held. Students also raised slogans of ‘Jai Hind’.

BCM: At BCM School, Dugri, various activities were organised by students to mark the Republic Day celebrations. The students were infused with a feeling of patriotism and love for the nation.

The little soldiers of KG section marched with great enthusiasm and saluted the National Flag. Tiny tots danced to the beats of patriotic songs, “Mere desh ki dharti”, “Suno gaur se duniya walo”, etc with great zest and zeal.

Students from the senior section remembered the martyrs and narrated stories about the lives of the great freedom fighters. The students sang patriotic songs like “Ae mere pyare vatan”, “Tiranga jhum-jhum lehray” etc. Dr Vandna Shahi, principal, encouraged the students to participate in such activities.

GNI: Students of GN International Senior Secondary Public School, Model Town, celebrated the Republic Day with great fervour and gaiety. The spirit of patriotism engulfed the campus. The pre-primary wing was decorated with balloons of tricolour and small flags adorned the whole building. Harjot of Nursery Blue sang “Nanha munna rahi hoon” while Mannanpreet sang “Ae watan ae watan humko teri kasam”.

An inter-section patriotic song competition for Classes I and II was held while students of LKG and UKG showed their creative skills by making the National Flag and reciting poems.

The senior section organised an inter-house flower arrangement competition on themes of communal harmony, rhythm, peace and ‘save environment’.

GMT: The week-long celebrations at GMT Public School included competitions like colouring, essay writing, poster making, face painting, solo song and fancy dress. Kids dressed as Pandit Jawaharlal Nehru, Mahatma Gandhi, Indira Gandhi, Bhagat Singh, Rani Laxmi Bai, impressed all. School directors Kashmir Singh Thind, Jasbir Singh Thind and principal Amarjeet Kaur Dhaliwal wished the students.

Kids’ Zone: The campus of Kids’ Zone Play Way School was decorated with colourful buntings, National Flag, tricoloured balloons. Students came dressed as national leaders and sang patriotic songs.

Jain Public: Jain Public School Senior Secondary School celebrated the Republic Day in its nursery wing in which tiny tots participated with great zeal. They came dressed as freedom fighters like Bhagat Singh, Mahatma Gandhi etc.

Debate: A debate competition was held at Mehta Gurukul Public School, Doraha. The overall trophy was won by Tagore International School, Sahnewal, and the first prize was won by Mehta Gurukul School. The competition was organised by Sahodya East Khanna School. 



PAU Notes
Programme on water storage tanks
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 25
Precision Farming Development Centre (PFDC) in the department of soil and water engineering organised a two-day training programme on construction of water storage tanks for the officers of the department of soil conservation, Punjab.

Dr PPS Lubana, principal investigator (PI) of the PFDC, said this was a specialised training course for soil conservation officers of south western Punjab. The centre was regularly organising trainings for the officers of the department of horticulture, the department of soil conservation and farmers on different aspects of micro irrigation and protected cultivation, he said.

Dr Rakesh Sharda, co-principal investigator of the project, said the participants included 22 officers from the south western Punjab, who were provided technical know-how about the theme of the course. He said topics included design of water storage tank for drip and sprinkler irrigation, economics of water storage tank in canal command areas, different types of lining materials for water storage reservoir and design and construction of lime lined tanks.

Experts included Dr KG Singh, Dr Anil Bhardwaj, Dr Rakesh Sharda and Dr Mukesh Siag. The participating officers were provided hands-on training and were taken to the fields of Jagtar Singh, progressive farmer of Meham Sarja (district Bathinda). Dr Sunil Garg, Nilesh Biwalkar and Dr Sudhir Thaman coordinated the field visit. The officers were shown both the brick-lined tanks as well and lime-lined tanks.

WORKSHOP: The Research and Extension Specialists Workshop for kharif crops will be organised at Punjab Agricultural University on February 16-17. Giving details, Director of Extension Education, Dr MS Gill, said the officers of the state department of agriculture and PAU scientists from the campus and outstations would participate in the workshop to discuss the new recommendations for kharif crops.

He added that on this occasion the new recommendations about farm technology developed since the last workshop would be shared by PAU scientists. He said the feedback received from the field-level functionaries often prove useful in re-prioritising the research and transfer of technology programmes.

ATHLETICS’ MEET: The 44th Annual Athletic Meet of Punjab Agricultural University will be held on University Athletic Track on February 5. Giving details, director (students welfare), Dr PPS Lubana said while some events would be conducted in the afternoon of February 4, other events would be held on February 5.



Cops gatecrash wedding to arrest groom
Our Correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh, January 25
Marriage celebrations at a marriage palace in Jagera village of Ludhiana district turned sour for families of bride and groom yesterday, when a police team from the CIA wing, Khanna, raided the premises to arrest the bridegroom.

The groom, Naudh Singh, of Rachhin village was wanted by the police in connection with a case registered against him and another accomplice for forging signatures of NRIs and withdrawing large amounts of money from their bank accounts in Khanna and adjoining areas.

The suspects had allegedly withdrawn over Rs 40 lakh from various accounts.

Naudh Singh’s name had figured in media around 14 months ago when a five-member team of the Royal Canadian Mounted Police (RCMP) visited the area to question some potential witnesses of the infamous bombing case of Kanishka aircraft in 1985.

Being an acquaintance of Balwant Singh, alleged kingpin of the gang behind Kanishka episode, Naudh Singh was grilled for over two hours in a closed room then.

Investigations by The Tribune revealed that a police team raided the premises of Milap Palace at Jagera village to arrest the groom.

Though the police and relatives of the bride and groom tried to keep the incident a secret, beggars and drifters converging on the palace to relish spare food blew the lid off the episode.

Acknowledging that Naudh Singh was wanted in a number of cases, Ramandeep Singh, in-charge of the raiding team, said he had allegedly defrauded at least three NRIs by withdrawing huge amounts from their accounts maintained at various branches of ICICI Bank.

On Saturday, the team had raided a premises where shagan ceremony was taking place at Mullanpur town, near Ludhiana.

The parents and relatives of the bride declined to comment on issue.



Industrialists meet Manmohan
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 25
Industrialists and representatives of the trade and industry associations have urged the government to end the cross-subsidy for electrical power by 2012 since it was causing almost 20 per cent higher cost of power. A delegation of industrialists met the PM in Delhi recently in this regard. Giving details about the meeting, SP Oswal, chairman of the Vardhman Group, claimed that the PM concurred with their view that the cross-subsidy was pointless as subsidy being given to the agriculture sector did not get reflected as a cost factor while fixing the minimum support prices (MSP) for various crops and thus resulted in fixation of a lower MSP.

Industrialists also raised the issue that women should be allowed to work in all three shifts. At present, the women were allowed to work from 6 am to 10 pm only in the industry, barring a few sectors like information technology and aviation.

“The PM has assured us to look into the issue of allowing women workers to work round the clock like male workers. He has asked us to send a concept note on the issue for consideration by the government,” he said.

The delegation also urged the PM to consider a special package for Punjab on similar lines as was being given to states like Himachal, Uttarakhand and J and K. 



Youth dies in freak mishap
Our Correspondent

Samrala, January 25
A youth of Khattran village was killed in a freak mishap here last evening.Harpal Singh (29) used to transport sand and other building material on a tractor-trolley. He was returning home when he lost control of the vehicle, laden with sand, after negotiating a turn near Madpur village. In the process, one tyre of the vehicle got stuck in the mud.

He got down to fix the problem but the trailer gave way, crushing him to death. No case has been registered in this regard.

The body was handed over to the family members after a post-mortem examination.



Four nabbed for robbery attempt
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 25
The police arrested four persons who were planning to commit robbery in the Model Town area.The accused have been identified as Gagandeep Singh, Manwinder Singh and Amit Singh, all from Manjit Nagar, and Mohd Mumtaz, a resident of Bihar. They were arrested when they assembled near the community hall in Model Town and were planning to commit the crime.

The Model Town police recovered three knives, iron rods and 21 cell phones from the possession of the accused. 



Labourer killed in accident
Our Correspondent

Samrala, January 25
A migrant labourer was killed when a speeding car knocked him down at the main chowk here last night.

The victim was identified as Dharminder Ram Kalia (36) and was working at a sweets shop.

He was seriously injured and was taken to a hospital where he later died.

The police has registered a case against the unidentified driver of the car under Section 304 of the Indian Penal Code on the statement of Mangat Rai, area councillor and owner of the sweets shop.



Two held with contraband
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, January 25
A team of Jalaldiwal police post under the Raikot police station of Ludhiana rural police arrested a man for possessing 55 kg poppy husk here today.

The team led by police post in-charge Mohan Das intercepted an Alto car (PB 56 B 2248) at a checkpoint on the outskirts of Burj Hari Singh village, near here.

The accused, Parkash Singh, of Burj Hari Singh village tried to flee but was arrested by the police.

During search, the police seized two bags of poppy husk. He later confessed to his involvement in peddling drugs in the area for the past 10 years.

He used to smuggle the contraband in a car or on a motor cycle. He was already facing two similar cases in the court. After getting a bail, he used to start his business afresh.

A case has been registered against the accused under Sections 15, 25, 61 and 85, NDPS Act, at the Raikot police station.

In another case, the Lohatbaddi police arrested Jagshir Singh of Dhuliwal village, near Mehal Kalan, Barnala district, from the outskirts of Johalan village.

The accused was riding a motor cycle (PB 19 D 4926) and carrying 520 gm opium. The accused has confessed to his involvement in the crime.

The accused has been booked under Sections 18, 25, 61 and 85, NDPS Act, at the Raikot police station.

In yet another case, the CIA staff of the Jagraon police on a tip-off seized 90 kg poppy husk from the house of Avtar Singh.

The poppy husk was packed in polybags of 1 kg each and kept in three drums of 30 kg each.

The police also recovered empty gunny bags of poppy husk from the possession of Avtar Singh, his son Didar Singh and daughter-in-law Tarlochan Kaur.

The poppy husk was hidden in a cattle shed. The accused fled from the scene.

Packaging material was also recovered from the scene.

A case under Sections 15, 25, 61 and 85, NDPS Act, has been registered at the Dakha police station. 



Two arrested for snatchings
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, January 25
The police has arrested two persons involved in various incidents of snatching.The accused — Dhawandeep Singh, alias Dhamna, of Pabbian village and Bikramjit Singh of Lamme Jata Pura village, near Raikot — used to snatch chains, mobiles and purses of unsuspecting women and flee on a motor cycle (PB 25 B 7786).

ASI Balwant Singh, in-charge of the Adda Raikot police post, had got a tip-off from a witness to a snatching incident.

The two were arrested at a checkpoint in the Khothe Khajooran area when they were trying to flee after snatching the purse of a woman, Sarabjit Kaur.

The police has booked the two under Sections 382 and 34 of the IPC and impounded their motor cycle.



Ludhiana claim basketball, handball titles
Our Sports Reporter

Jarkhar (Ludhiana),January 25
Ludhiana made clean sweep in basketball and handball events of the 24th edition of Jarkhar sports festival organised under the aegis of the Punjab Rural Sports Promotion Council at Mata Sahib Kaur Stadium here today.

In basketball, Ludhiana lads pipped 45-30, while in the girls’ section, Ludhiana district outplayed Kapurthala 40-35 to emerge champions.

Similarly, in handball, Ludhiana boys overpowered Patiala 22-19 to romp home champions and in the girls’ section, Ludhiana got the better of Ropar 34-32 to clinch the title.

In hockey boys’ u-14 final, Jarkhar Academy beat Gurukul Mehta Academy, Doraha, 4-2 and in the senior section, PAU XI defeated Jarkhar XI 2-1.

In the senior women’s section, Haryana XI prevailed over Jarkhar Academy 3-2 to
 bag the title.

In volleyball (smashing), Jalandhar boys outperformed Ferozepur Railway 26-24, 25-21 and in the girls’ section, Tarn Taran outplayed Ludhiana 25-21, 25-15 to romp home victors.

In kabaddi, Baba Farid Academy of Faridkot outplayed Alnkar Tony Academy of Kube 42-34.

Avneet Kaur, former football star along with hockey olympian Baljit Singh, singer Kuldeep Manak and Rupinder Singh Ravi, assistant education officer (sports), Ludhiana, were felicitated for their contribution in their respective fields.

Former Punjab cabinet minister Bikramjit Singh Majithia was the chief guest at the concluding ceremony.

MLA Darshan Singh Shivalik, and chairman, Ludhiana zila parishad Manpreet Singh Ayali along with other prominent persons of the area were also present there.



Canada Kabaddi Cup
Moga club emerge champs
Our Sports Reporter

Ludhiana, January 25
Ambi Hathoor International Club, Moga, survived some anxious moments before romping home winners 41.5-40 against Dashmesh Club, Kalakh, in the final of the eight Canada Kabaddi Cup Tournament organised by the Malwa Sports Club in association with the Frazer Valley Sports Club of Canada at Guru Nanak Stadium, here yesterday.

Pappy Khaira of Dashmesh Kabaddi Club was declared best stopper, while Maddi Matlora and Jeeta Toor were adjudged best raiders jointly.

In the earlier matches played en route to the final, Ambi Hathoor International Club beat Ranjit Talwar Club, Moga, while Dashmesh Kabaddi Club overpowered Sant Ishar Singh Kabaddi Academy, Rara Sahib, to set up the title clash.

Member of Parliament Ranjit Singh Bittu and Punjab cabinet minister Hira Singh Gabria, Kila Raipur MLA Jassi Khangura and Tara Singh Malha were the guests of honour at the opening ceremony of the tournament.

Rajinder Singh Hissowal and Ricky Dhat, president and chairman, respectively of the organising club, besides Sukhwinder Singh Gaunsgarh were also present.



Rich haul for SAI judokas
Our Sports Reporter

Ludhiana, January 25
Judokas of the Sports Authority of India (SAI) Northern Centre reaped a rich haul of medals in the Inter-SAI Regional Judo Competition for boys and girls held at SAI training centre, Aurangabad, Maharashtra, recently.

According to Harbans Singh, in-charge, SAI Training Centre, Ludhiana, and coordinator, Punjab, judokas from the centre won 13 gold, five silver and three bronze medals.

Harbans Singh appreciated the players and coaches Rakesh Singh and Sonia Kumari who accompanied the squads for the achievement.

A communique has also been received from executive director, SAI Northern Centre, Chandigarh, LS Ranawat in which he has congratulated the judokas for their performance.



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