L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S

2 taxation officials suspended
Registration of firms with bogus sale transactions
Kanchan Vasdev/Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 30
Exposing the alleged nexus between excise officials and industrial units, the excise and taxation department has suspended two of its officials and chargesheeted another senior official for registering firms showing bogus sale transactions.

The department has also identified 52 industrial units who were involved in preparing bogus sales bills and getting themselves registered with the department, allegedly in connivance with the officials to evade tax, and sent a complaint to the SSP to launch criminal proceedings against these units.

Venu Prasad, Excise and Taxation Commissioner, today suspended two inspectors of the department and issued a chargesheet to a senior official in this regard. These units not only evaded sales tax, but also got a refund of VAT by showing bogus transactions.

An inquiry revealed that the units had shown many buyers and their addresses. When the probe team reached the buyers, they only found dhaba owners and autorickshaw drivers. The department unearthed bogus sale transactions worth Rs 356 crore. Following the startling revelations, the department has put under scanner 200 more such units.

Rishi Pal, assistant excise and taxation officer, said they were shocked to find that the defaulting units had even got the VAT refunded even though they had not made genuine sale transactions.

“We are now going to reject their input tax credits (ITCs) and besides lodging a complaint, we would also start proceedings against these firms and take departmental action,” he added.


PAU kills crows to keep birds off
Charu Chhibber
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 30
Exhibiting cruelty towards life, the PAU has been killing crows to keep birds away from its research farms. The carcass of a crow hanging from a pole in the university’s wheat farm is a dreadful sight and leaves one wondering why an institution like the PAU is following such a cruel method.

Shockingly, the university authorities are said to have been following the practice for quiet some time. The “irresponsible” act of the PAU has not only evoked sharp criticism from animal rights organisations, but also from scores of residents.

“I have witnessed the cruel practice on the campus. I had noticed two dead crows hanging from a pole in the university fields in October last year. The sight shocked me beyond words,” remarked Mohan Singh, a farmer from Kapurthala district.

Vipan Bhatia, founder president, Pakshi Sewa Samiti, said: “This is cruelty to birds. And coming from an institution like the PAU, it is unwarranted. The university is responsible for feeding millions, but it is treating birds like toys. If this is what they are teaching our farmers, I am worried that very soon, crows would be on the endangered list.”

He added that he would take up the matter with the authorities concerned and if need be, file a case.

“This is appalling. The institution that has produced hundreds of acclaimed scientists is following such an unscientific and ancient method of warding off birds. I will take up the matter with the VC as well as the wildlife authorities,” Dr Sandeep Jain, member of the Animal Welfare Board of India, stated.

Meanwhile, expressing ignorance, Dr PS Minhas, director of research, PAU, said he would immediately look into the matter.



Close shave for school kids
Bus rams into level crossing barrier
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 30
Around 40 children of a CBSE school located near Hambran road had a narrow escape after the bus ferrying them rammed into a level crossing barrier near Sacred Heart School here this morning. The impact was so strong that the iron barrier broke. The incident took place around 8.30 am when the barrier was being lowered in view of an approaching train.

The school bus driver tried to cross the barrier but rammed into it, causing a traffic jam. According to eyewitness, sensing trouble, the driver sped away the bus.

Laxman Das, who was manning the level crossing, did not report the matter to the railway authorities. A railway official said the barrier had broken down as it had rusted.

However, Laxman Das said the speeding bus had rammed into the barrier. The bus then sped towards Punjab Mata Nagar. He said he used the iron chain to stop the traffic.

A GRPF inspector confirmed the development and said the police was probing the matter. The school authorities denied such an incident had taken place.

In the past, several incidents have been reported where bus drivers have tried to speed across the unmanned level crossings, resulting in fatal accidents.



City celebrates birth anniversary of Guru Ravidas
Our Correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh, January 30
The birth anniversary of Guru Ravidas was celebrated here today. The functions were held at the Gurdwara Bhagat Ravidas, Jandali road, and Ambedkar Bhawan, Amarpura. Akhand path and kirtan were organised in different gurdwaras. Langar was also served to devotees.
A singer performs on Guru Ravi Das Jayanti in Ludhiana on Saturday
A singer performs on Guru Ravi Das Jayanti in Ludhiana on Saturday. A Tribune photograph

Poetry recitation and lectures on the life and philosophy of Guru Ravidas marked the occasion. MLA Iqbal Singh Jhoondan called upon people to imbibe teachings of the guru in their lives.

Usha Sood, president of the civic body, councillors Bimal Sharma, Bhag Singh Bhagga, Dilshad Khan and Ravinder Puri announced various developmental projects in the areas inhabited by Dalits.

Various organisations, including the Shri Ram Mandir Committee, the Kalgidhar Federation, the Sukhmani Seva Society and the Baba Budha Parchar Trust participated.

The anniversary was also celebrated at Hargobind Pura, Bhagat Ravidas Dharamsala, Jagera road, Pohir road and Guru Nanak Pura.

Meanwhile, Guru Ravidas Jayanti was celebrated with fervour across the city with devotees paying tributes to the guru here today.

Residents gathered in large numbers at religious function held at Basti Jodhewal where they sang hymns and were preached teachings of the guru.

Urging devotees to follow the footsteps of guru, speakers asked them to adopt the path of honesty and take pride in whatever work they do. "Guru Ravidas has been a source of inspiration for all of us," said a speaker.

A community kitchen was also organised for devotees.

Baba Banda Singh Bahadur International Manch also paid tributes to the guru. Manch president Krishan Kumar Pahwa said: "The guru is an ideal and we should respect him."



Power Cuts
Effigy of SAD-BJP govt burnt
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 30
Activists of Bhartiya Valmiki Dharam Samaj (Bhavadas) today burnt the effigy of SAD-BJP government for frequent power cuts even during winters. Rajesh Khokhar, state president of the outfit, along with the agitators said it was disappointing that the government had failed to supply uninterrupted power supply even during the winter season.

The activists said it was an injustice to the urban sector that the farmers were being given free power, while the urban consumers were paying through their nose and suffering.

‘‘The day starts with a power cut and ends with a power cut and the government is making tall claims that it would introduce metro rail in the city. How would they run the metro, if they could not supply uninterrupted power supply?’’ he questioned.



City forgets Bapu
Charu Chhibber/Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 30
In what could only be termed as sheer indifference towards national heroes, the city today forgot to observe the death anniversary of Mahatma Gandhi. However, the district administration and the Congress paid tributes to Bapu, but the administration forgot to sound a hooter to announce the official two-minute silence in the memory of the Father of the Nation.

The city that celebrates all big and small events with much élan is earning the reputation of being forgetful about the contributions of great leaders and eminent personalities. This is not the first time that city residents have forgotten to pay tributes to a national hero. On earlier occasions too, they failed to remember people like Sahir Ludhianvi and Bhagat Singh.

No educational institution in the city considered the day special enough to hold a small function or any competition in the memory of Mahatma Gandhi. Nor did any social or religious organisation come forward to pay tributes to him. All this in a city which bubbles with enthusiasm to celebrate “chocolate day”, “rose day” and Valentine’s Day, etc.

“Perhaps because all schools and colleges were closed today on the occasion of the birth anniversary of Guru Ravidas, no function was held to pay tributes to Mahatma Gandhi. Otherwise, we would have celebrated the day in a big way,” a school principal remarked.

Meanwhile, tributes were paid to Mahatma Gandhi and other martyrs at a function at the mini secretariat.

Shopkeepers of Mata Rani Chowk area paid tributes at Bapu’s statue at 1 pm. “‘We waited for leaders to come, but nobody turned up. In the afternoon, we decided to do something to pay our respects. We garlanded and cleaned the statue,” they said.



Principals sensitised on evaluation
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 30
Heads of several CBSE-affiliated schools in the state attended a one-day advocacy and training programme on the continuous comprehensive evaluation (CCE) scheme introduced by the CBSE as part of its examination reforms.

The programme was conducted at the BCM Arya Model Senior Secondary School to sensitise them on the CCE scheme of school-based assessment and implementation of a fool-proof grading system.

At least 25 principals and senior teachers from city schools attended the programme, which was conducted by CBSE-nominated resource person Gayatri Khanna.

She said the change in the examination system was a welcome step, but cautioned the principals to ensure correct evaluation and exhorted the teachers to tap excellence of students beyond the stereo-type methods.

Explaining the need for the implementing the system, she elaborated on how and why the grading system would raise the quality of education and force teachers to be more alert while judging a student during internal assessment.

Addressing the participants, she said the student-friendly CCE scheme aimed at making learning a joyful process because the race for marks took away the joy of learning.

The CCE scheme would help document the child’s all-round progress through an ongoing year-round assessment system divided into two terms.

The workshop included a PowerPoint presentation on the CCE scheme, containing its genesis, measuring techniques, evaluation tools and student profile methodology.

A discussion was held towards the end, wherein principals put forth their queries. The resource person clarified that transparency was the backbone of CCE scheme.



120 delegates attend seminar at GNN College
Our Correspondent

Doraha, January 30
A total of 120 delegates from all over Punjab, including Ferozepur, Chandigarh, Ludhiana, Khanna, Amritsar and Gobindgarh Mandi attended the one-day national-level seminar on ‘Changing Dimensions in Indian Financial Sector’ sponsored by ICSSR and organised by the Postgraduate Department of Commerce and Business Administration at Dr Ishwar Singh Memorial Hall of Guru Nanak National College, here today.

Ranjodh Singh, chairman and managing director of GS Radiators, Ludhiana, was the chief guest. In his inaugural address, he expressed concern over the growing popularity of Chinese goods, while at the same time he exhorted the Indians to pull up their resources, if they wished to take the ultimate lead.

“Atlhough the Indian economy has undergone a tremendous change and the growth rate of India too is significantly higher as compared to the other countries, still India in general and Punjab in particular, has to rethink in terms of strengthening primarily its agricultural resource.

Although there is a marked difference between the rich and the poor followed by violation of human rights in China as compared to India yet the stake holders need to be geared up for what is required by the industry at present.” he added.

He also said the gap between bookish knowledge and what was the actual requirement of the day, needed to be filled up.

The guest of honour, Dr Karamjeet Singh, fellow Panjab University, Chandigarh, and the key note speaker, Dr SD Vashisht, former head of Maharishi Dayanand University, Rohtak, deliberated on the main theme ‘Changing Dimensions in Indian Financial Sector’ while other scholars, including Dr Balwinder Singh of Guru Nanak Dev University, Amritsar, spoke on ‘Innovation in Money Market’. Dr Sukhdev Singh of Guru Nanak Engineering College, Ludhiana, spoke on ‘Emerging dimensions in Indian Banking System’, Dr AK Vashisht of University Business School, Panjab University, Chandigarh spoke on ‘Innovation in Banking Sector’, Prof Gagan Deep Sharma, coordinator, Department of Management Studies at the Baba Banda Singh Bahadur Engineering College, Fatehgarh Sahib, spoke on ‘Challenege and Impact of Great Economic Recession with respect to Global Economy’. Dr Bikram Singh Virk, Nawab Jassa Singh Ahluwalia Government College, Kapurthala, too shared his expert views with the delegates.

Principal Dr Narinder Singh Sidhu welcomed the guest of the occasion while Prof Gursharanjit Singh, the seminar coordinator presented the topic. Director Jaswant Singh Gill extended the vote of thanks. Prof Balwant Singh Pangli, general secretary, college management committee, however, delivered the valedictory address at the end of the seminar.

Tarlok Singh Jaggi, assistant secretary, was present on the occasion. 



Farmers visit PAU campus
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 30
A 32-member delegation of farmers visited the PAU campus here yesterday. The delegation members were shown around the demonstration area, PAU apiary and other landmarks. The members showed keen interest in wheat crop. Additional director of communication Dr Jagtar Singh Dhiman explained the organisational set-up and technology generation and dissemination programmes of the PAU.

Alumni meet

The annual meet of the alumni of College of Agriculture (COA) of the PAU will be held on February 11 and 12. COA dean Dr Milkha Singh Aulakh said in addition to those from within the country, alumni of the college from Faislabad, Pakistan, would also be invited to participate.

He said special technical sessions on topics relevant to prevailing agricultural scenario would be organised.



Seminar on right to education
Our Correspondent

Raikot, January 30
The management of Sadbhavna College of Education for women organised a state-level seminar on Right to Education Act here today. The seminar was presided over by Dr RK Sharma, dean, Punjab University Chandigarh, while Bikramjit Singh Khalsa, chief parliamentary secretary, was guest of honour.

The scope, applications and challenges to be faced by the Act was discussed in the seminar by resource persons, including Dr Madhu Meeta, Dr Sneh Gargi, principal of Moga College of Education, Dr Rajwant Kaur.

Dr Sharma said in coming five years all teachers must meet the minimum required qualifications otherwise they would lose their jobs.

Dr Madhu Meeta sought amendment in the Act to include children below six years of age, as Anganwadi institutions were not covering the entire areas and then students of 15-18 age groups also under the preview of the Act.

Dr Sneh Gargi said the private institution should be encouraged to provide cost efficient and wide spread education.



Land Acquisition
Farmers form front against GAIL authorities
Our Correspondent

Raikot, January 30
Those farmers, who will be affected by the acquisition of their agricultural land for laying down the gas pipeline by GAIL, have formed a front to fight the monopolistic attitude of the company. The gas pipeline will be passing through the villages of Raikot.

The farmers held a meeting on this issue along with the representatives of political parties. The political parties extended full support to the farmers on this issue.

The farmers are directed not to grow trees, dig ponds and install tubewells on the land. No construction is allowed on their farmland that has been earmarked for laying the gas pipeline.

The GAIL authorities have notified the farmers that although the owner will continue to own the land, its usage will no longer be with the owner.

Moreover, the farmers will not be able to fetch reasonable price of their land as no industry can not be set up on the land from where the gas pipeline will be passing.

The farmers are against the Union government’s decision to lay a gas pipeline through the fertile land instead of laying it along the canal and roadsides.

A Joint action committee is being set up to decide the next course of action. Darshan Singh, Ajwinder Singh, Surinder Singh, Bhag Singh Nirmal Singh, Sadhu Singh, Tejwant Singh, Laxman Singh, Baldev Singh, Sukhdial Singh and Lakhwinder Singh were among those present on this occasion.



Traders file VAT returns

Ludhiana, January 30
Huge rush of traders to file VAT returns at the Sales Tax Department was witnessed here today. Starting from early morning, traders were seen making beeline at the office to file the returns. Though the last date of filing the VAT returns has been extended till Monday, but majority of traders preferred to file returns today itself to avoid unnecessary, last -minute botherations. According to sources, between 11and 3 pm, when power cut was imposed, the work was paralysed at the department. One of the employees on condition of anonymity disclosed that the department had no genset, so work was affected.

Passwords to traders were being issued at AETC 1 and 11 while the returns were filed with AETC-3. Though, it was a holiday today yet the department was opened for the convenience of traders to file their returns. — TNS



Youth found murdered
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 30
A 27-year-old youth who went missing from Tibba road on January 26, was found murdered with sharp-edged weapons here today. His body was recovered from the Sidhwan canal. The victim has been identified as Atul Kumar, alias Ravi, a resident of Company Bagh Colony, went missing under mysterious circumstances from Tibba road on January 27.

According to the police, his body was spotted by a bystander in the evening. The incident spread panic in the Shimlapuri area.

The investigating officer said the body was in a mutilated condition and bore multiple stab wounds.



Couple killed in accident

Raikot, January 30
A middle-aged couple got killed in a head-on collision today. The deceased identified as Dr Phugan Singh (45) and his wife Jasbir Kaur (42) of Farwahi village of Sangrur district were in their Maruti Car (PB 10 AH 6874) and were on their way towards Raikot when a truck trailer (HR 37 3052) going towards Barnala hit it head-on killing both of them on the spot.

The accident took place on the Barnala road. The truck driver fled. Harbhajan Singh, inquiry officer, impounded both the vehicles and registered a case against the unidentified truck driver. An FIR was not registered till the filling of the report. — OC



Husband booked for abetting suicide
Mahesh Sharma

Mandi Ahmedgarh, January 30
Failing to endure alleged atrocities of her husband any more, Rajwinder Kaur (32) of Kalakh village in Ludhiana district, ended her life by hanging herself with her duppatta. She forced her two minor children to go out of her room before committing suicide.

The Dehlon police has booked Rajwinder Kaur’s husband Ranjit Singh under Section 306 of the IPC. The case was registered on the statement of Khazan Singh of Gopalpur, the deceased’s father.

In a complaint lodged with the Dehlon police, Khazan Singh, has alleged that Ranjit Singh, his son-in-law, had allegedly abetted his daughter Rajwinder Kaur to commit suicide last night.

According to Khazan Singh, Rajwinder Kaur was married to Ranjit Singh about 15 years ago and the Gopalpur family had given the couple almost all articles of daily use. Though things went smoothly for some years, Ranjit Singh allegedly started harassing Rajwinder on one pretext or the other. Relatives and social leaders of two villages had to intervene in the matter a number of times.

The couple was blessed with a daughter (12) and son (10).



Gangsters drug driver, take away car
Timely action by Chhappar residents saves his life
Mahesh Sharma

Mandi Ahmedgarh, January 30
Timely action by residents and civic body of Chhappar village saved the life of a driver, who was thrown out of a car in an unconscious condition in the field, by members of an inter-state gang of vehicle snatchers yesterday.

Victim Balwinder Singh of Garhi village Khanauri, whom the snatchers had thrown mistaking him to be dead, was identified on the basis of a mobile SIM card left in his pocket. The unknown gangsters had taken away all valuables, including the Swift Desire Car he was travelling, mobile phone and ornaments.

Two days after the incident, the Dehlon police is still clueless about the identification of suspects.

SHO Rachhpal Singh Dhindsa said search was on in the area and further action would be initiated after the victim regained consciousness.

Balwinder Singh was found lying unconscious in the verandah of a tubewell room constructed in the fields on the outskirts of Chhappar village at about midnight yesterday.

Residents of the village led by sarpanch Ajaib Singh, informed the Latala police and shifted the victim to the local Hind Hospital, where doctors put him on life-support system. Victim was later shifted to another hospital at Sangrur on request of his relatives last evening.

Investigations by the Ludhiana Tribune revealed that some unknown persons had allegedly drugged Balwinder Singh and taken away the car belonging to his master Jasbir Singh of Khanauri town in Sangrur district, somewhere during the intervening night of Thursday and Friday.

According to Jasbir Singh, owner of the car, his driver, Balwinder Singh, had left Khanauri on pretext of taking some of his friends to Ludhiana at about 2.30 pm on the fateful day.

Balwinder had told Jasbir Singh that he would return in the evening after dropping his friends at a multi-specialty hospital at Ludhiana.

On being contacted, Balwinder had told Jasbir Singh that he had started return journey at about 8 pm on the same day.

It was around midnight, that a migrant labourer staying in a room in the fields situated on outskirts of Chhappar heard some noises outside his room. When he came out he found Balwinder Singh lying in an unconscious condition. Mistaking it to be a body, he informed the owner of the field, who further informed village sarpanch Ajaib Singh.

Had the villagers not acted promptly and shifted Balwinder to the hospital, he could have succumbed to internal injuries and effect of the drug, the gangsters gave him. 



150 quintals of wheat seized
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, January 30
The district food and supply corporation seized a truck loaded with 300 sacks of wheat, weighing around 150 quintals, meant to be sold under the public distribution scheme (PDS) near the bus stand here late last evening.

The seizure was made following a tip-off from a source.

According to the DFSC officer, Rakesh Bhasker, the wheat was part of a special scheme of the state government under which a 10 kg sack of wheat flour was provided for Rs 120.

The police has booked a case against Bhagwati flour mill, Alamgir, in this regard. The driver has been nabbed.



3 booked for assault

Raikot, January 30
The police booked three persons, including an NRI for entering into the house of Pardeep Singh of Talwandi Rai village and assaulting old ladies at home and then firing in the air. Complainant Pardeep told the police that Kanwal Singh of his village, presently in Canada, came to his house around 8 pm along with his accomplices identified as Gurpreet Singh of Boparai Khurd village near Sudhar and Baldev Singh of Jalaldiwal village near here.

They assaulted his mother and grandmother and threatened him of dire consequences.

It is learnt that both had an old dispute, the incident occurred on January 25 and was reported to the police, but influential persons of the village tried to solve the matter. The police, however, booked the accused under Sections 452, 336, 506 and 34 of the IPC and 25, 27, 54 and 59 Arms Act. — OC



Thieves decamp with vehicle
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, January 30
A gang of thieves last night decamped with a Bolero jeep, a licensed double-barrel gun and ammunition kept inside the jeep. Dalvir Singh of Waizdke Kalan village near Barnala has complained to the Jagraon police that he along with family had come to attend a marriage function held at Over Seven Seas Resorts on the Ludhiana Road, Jagraon, around 8 in the evening. He went inside the resort but kept his licensed double barrel riffle (No. 12769) of Ansaaf Brand and 25-live cartridges in their white Bolero jeep (PB 10 CB (T) 7985) itself.

Late in the night when they came out to return to their place they found that the Jeep along with arm and ammunition worth Rs. 5 lakh went missing.

ASI Raminderjit Singh, In charge, Chowkiman police picket, said they had registered a case of theft under Section 379 of the IPC but the police is still clueless over the whereabouts of the jeep as well as the arms and ammunition.



2 booked

Raikot, January 30
The Raikot police booked two persons, including the husband and his mother in-law of Jasvir Kaur for abetment to suicide. Jasvir Kaur of Roomi village was married to Harwinder Singh of Burj Hari Singh village near Raikot. She was found hanging from the ceiling fan of her room on September 18 last year.

At the time of death, Piara Singh, the father of the deceased opted proceedings under Section 174 CrPC but Naghiaya Singh, brother of the deceased, going against the decision of his father gave an application to the SHO, Raikot, on September 29 and then to the SSP, Jagraon, on October 14 last year complaining that his sister was a victim of dowry harassment as her in-laws used to ill treat her for not bringing in adequate dowry.

After the inquiry, the Raikot police booked Harwinder Singh and his mother under Section 306 of the IPC. No arrest has been made so far. — OC



Shuttler to represent country
Our Sports Reporter

Ludhiana, January 30
The year 2010 has started well for the local shuttler, Pranav Chopra, as this promising player, after wrapping up the doubles and mixed doubles titles in the Major Junior National Ranking Badminton Tournament held at Nellore, last week, is now chosen to represent the country in an international tourney.

Pranav Chopra, a trainee of the Ludhiana Badminton Academy (LBA), continues to make waves in the field of badminton as he has been selected by the Badminton Association of India to take part in the Senior Iran Fajr International Challenge Tournament, slated to be held in Tehran from February 3 to 6.

According to a communiqué received from the apex body, Chopra along with Sai Praneeth from Andhra Pradesh will don the national colours in the doubles category in this prize money tournament for which this pair has been ranked at number two. This tournament carries $15,000 as prize money.

Pranav and Sai Praneeth have been picked up for this prestigious tournament on the basis of their performance in the national ranking tournaments where the duo clinched more than half a dozen titles in the junior as well as senior categories.



SAI trials conclude
Our Sports Reporter

Ludhiana, January 30
The three-day selection trials conducted by the Sports Authority of India (SAI) at the sports complex near Guru Nanak Stadium concluded here today. More than 200 aspirants came for trials to select the players in six disciplines, including athletics, basketball, judo, handball, volleyball and weightlifting under the residential and non-residential schemes of the SAI.

After monitoring physical motor abilities like speed, strength, endurance, flexibility, agility and coordination among other abilities, the selection panel appointed by the SAI authorities shortlised 61 players and sent it to the executive director, SAI northern region, Chandigarh, for approval.



HOME PAGE | Punjab | Haryana | Jammu & Kashmir | Himachal Pradesh | Regional Briefs | Nation | Opinions |
| Business | Sports | World | Letters | Chandigarh | Ludhiana | Delhi |
| Calendar | Weather | Archive | Subscribe | Suggestion | E-mail |