L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Rain brings down temperature
Woolens out of closet again
Charu Chhibber
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 4
City's hip 'n' happening brigade will have to wait for a while before they can flaunt their trendy summer wear with panache. For, with rain showers lashing the city this morning, temperatures came crashing, forcing the city residents to pull out their woolens from closets once again.

With erratic weather conditions prevailing in the region over the past few days, temperatures have been rising and falling with consistent irregularity. While on some days the sun is shining bright and the air is warm; the very next day witnesses cloudy formations and cool winds blowing in the face. At times, morning weather conditions are quite different from those of the evening.

"This phenomenon has everybody wondering as to what to wear to school, college or workplace. Because, what might be right in the morning could be too less to bear the evening chill," remarked Rini Deswal, a college student.

Radhika Dua, a housewife, added, "Temperatures had been rising for the past few days and wearing sweaters had become impossible."

"Anticipating the onset of summers, I had dumped all my woolens, little knowing that rain showers would bring the chill in the air back. I had to take out my woolens again this morning," she frowned.

The cool winds surely have disappointed the summer lovers!

"I had started stocking up on my summer wear and was so excited that I would be able to flaunt all my sleeveless and halter-neck dresses and my chappals in a few days. But seems like there is still time for that,” rued entrepreneur Eva Ghai.

Meanwhile, Dr KK Gill, assistant agrometeorologist, department of agrometeorology, Punjab Agriculture University, said, “The temperatures over the past few days have been almost 5 degrees above normal but today, there was a marked dip in the maximum temperature, hence the chill.”

However, bringing good news for the stylish brigade of the town, Gill added that the weather conditions would stabilise in a day or two and temperatures would start rising.


“One should be very careful during changing weather as the warm and cold phenomenon can lead to several ailments, most commonly chest infections, palpitation among asthma patients, common colds and respiratory infections. To avoid these, one should take precautions, especially during early morning and evening hours and wear proper warm clothing.”

— Dr Sandeep Puri, Medical Superintendent, DMC and Hospital, Ludhiana 


Encroachments on Mall Road removed
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

A JCB machine demolishes illegal structures outside Union Bank of India/Nikka Mal showroom on the Mall road in Ludhiana on Thursday.
A JCB machine demolishes illegal structures outside Union Bank of India/Nikka Mal showroom on the Mall road in Ludhiana on Thursday. Photo: Inderjeet Verma

Ludhiana, March 4
It is perhaps the first time that the municipal corporation authorities are adamant on removing all encroachments within its limits. Strictly following the Punjab and Haryana High Court orders of removing encroachments in the city, a massive demolition drive was started at one of posh areas of city - the Mall Road - today.

MC officials, in coordination with the police, went ahead with the demolition drive outside leading shopping malls and showrooms on one side of Mall road. The "sincere" drive has been accepted well by the residents, who feel if the authorities acted tough, several of city's problems could be solved within no time.

A team of about 50-60 members from both the municipal corporation and the Traffic Police, along with JCB machines, tow-away vehicles, police vans etc started the demolition drive at 10:30 am on one side of Mall Road (towards Fountain Chowk). The encroachments were removed outside Nikka Mal/Geetanjali Jewellers, Axis Bank, Cheap Silk Stores, outside Ebony etc.

Stalls of several vendors/fresh flowers were were erased by the MC workers. Besides, vehicles of salesmen/women were towed away and impounded by the authorities. Expensive flooring, beautification marks, hoardings etc were removed from in front of showroom owners.

The traffic police personnel on the spot made sure that there was no traffic jam on Mall Road or inconvenience caused to commuters. They kept on regulating traffic during the entire demolition drive. Till the filing of this report, anti-encroachment drive was on and workers had reached near Elite Arcade.

Additional Commsioner Kamalpreet Brar told TNS that the MC was following the High Court orders on a priority basis. She said the drive would not stop until all encroachments on the Mall road were removed. She also said that the owners of these shopping malls/showrooms were given prior warning to remove encroachments and use parking place for parking purposes only. "Those who fail to adhere to norms, have to face the music," she said.

Meanwhile, Sangeeta Khurana, a homemaker and witness to the demolition drive on the Mall road, said it was a welcome step. "We should not crib at their loss. Such strict measures should have been taken much before for the welfare of city residents," she said. 



9 injured as four buses collide
Our Correspondent

Doraha, March 4
Nine passengers sustained injuries after four private buses collided one after another on an overbridge here today morning.While Paramjit Kaur and Satyawati of Gobindgarh were admitted to Rajwant Hospital; Mohammad Razak and Roza Fatima of Sherpur, Ranjit Singh of Jamalpur, Sukhwinder Singh of Jodhewal, Guriqbal Singh and Baldev Singh of Shimlapuri, Kuldip Singh of Baranwala were admitted to Sidhu hospital with minor injuries.

The buses, New Fatehgarh (PB-023-H-0597), Khatra Highways (PB-11AG-9895), Pepsu Roadways (PB- 11 AP 2819) and Prince (PB- 08BF 4361) collided with each other when an auto rickshaw driver suddenly applied brakes due to a grave pit on the bridge. “The buses were at such a fast speed that while one bus applied brakes, the other three bumped into each other, thus injuring the passengers,” rued a passenger seated in one of the buses. No action could be taken against any of them as the compromise was supposedly met between the bus drivers and conductors.

A police team reached the spot and got the injured admitted to different

A passenger complained, “The accident happened at the time when drivers of the four buses were vying with each other to reach the Doraha bus stand in order to pick up the passengers, least bothered of those sitting inside. As the drivers and conductors of the private buses are @always engaged in mad competition with their fellow bus drivers, this hit and run race has become a matter of routine for them”.

One of the passengers, who daily commutes from Ludhiana to Doraha, said, “Till date there have been numerous such incidents where the drivers and conductors, particularly of the private buses have thrown all rules and regulations to winds and played with the lives of not only those commuting on roads but with the passengers too.”

“It is the sheer callousness of the police and the administration that has utterly failed in checking the misadventures of these drivers who play havoc on the roads and endanger the life of one and all”, the passengers resented. 



Ramdev takes political course
Motivates people to join his party
Manav Mander
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 4
Stress buster yoga guru Baba Ramdev has taken a political course. The baba, who took the ancient art of keeping fit to virtually every household, today motivated people to join his political party that he would announce before the Lok Sabha elections.

At a meeting here, he announced that he would be selecting nearly 7 to 10 lakh people for his party in the coming Lok Sabha elections.

While usually he is busy telling ‘asanas’ for relaxation, today the yoga exponent was busy giving directions to his workers to make his drive a success. “I want to make this country free of corruption, and for that I need your support and cooperation,” he said.

The workers, who gathered at a marriage resort today, too, were taken in for a surprise when the Baba started talking about treading the political path when all these years he was criticising politicians.

All these years, he was heard on TV talking about herbs, his vision to set up an ayurvedic university and inculcating Indian values among masses. But today he was a different baba. He mocked at the politicians by calling them ‘‘hungry’’.

He even made high-flying statements on death penalty when he said it should be given to those who indulge in corruption. Only then this country can be saved from hungry politicians. Apart from this, rape convicts should also be given death penalty,” he said. Fast-track courts is the only solutions, he advocated.

At the same time, he cautioned his followers that he was talking politics today, but that does not mean he is turning into a politician. He will remain in the background. “Yoga will always be my first love,” he said. And he could not refrain himself from talking about the budget when he said, “What was there in the budget. I had nothing for the common man”. Only two positive things that Baba Ramdev found in the budget were Rs 500 crore granted to river Ganga and the decision to auction the gold mines.



For speedy trial of corruption cases
Kuldip Bhatia

Ludhiana, March 4
Yoga guru Baba Ramdev today made a strong plea for cleansing the "rotten" political system in the country and making provisions for setting up fast-track courts for speedy trials of cases involving corruption and other heinous crimes like rape and sedition.

Baba Ramdev, who was in the city to participate in the state working committee of the "Bharat Swabhiman", a movement launched by him to prepare ground for the plunge in politics, for which he has already given clear indication, said while talking to mediapersons that corruption ought to be considered as a crime against the country, and dealt with accordingly.

Making a case for bringing much needed reforms in the political system, continuing since the Britsih era, Baba gave ample indication of assuming an active role in politics. "To cleanse the system, you need honest and committed people. From where will they come if good persons refuse to join politics," he asked.

Coming down heavily on the present-day government for failure to make any visible efforts to bring back an estimated 258 lakh crore of Indian money stashed in foreign banks, the yoga guru asserted that most of this black money belonged to politicians, and that was the reason that the government was showing little or no interest in bringing back this money and exposing those who had amassed huge fund by misuse of their political power.

He reiterated his stand that criminals and terrorists, sentenced by courts, should not be pardoned, and in this context, he even questioned the constitutional power of the President of India to grant amnesty. “In our scheme of things, no one will have the power to let those punished by courts, go scot free.”

The baba was non-sparing against bogus and self-styled godmen, who were bringing a bad name to the entire fraternity of holy men. “I am all against such bogus sadhus and babas and they should be given stringent punishment. But at the same time, we should also remain vigilant against persistent motivated attempts to defame the entire community of men of God,” he added.



Ishmeet's picture defaced by miscreants
Kanchan Vasdev
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 4
The defacement of Voice of India-Late Ishmeet Singh's picture on a chowk named after him has caused immense hurt to his family, which is gradually coming to terms with the shock of his loss.His picture, printed on a flex sheet with a message, was put up on Ishmeet Singh Chowk by his family.It was defaced by some miscreants last night.

‘‘It is a matter of shame. While the world watched him with love and plunged into gloom after his tragic death, we have our own people behaving like this,’’ said his father, Gurpinder Singh.

The family was shocked to see that the ‘‘gentle’’ and ‘‘humble’’ face had such haters, who could not tolerate his picture in a city chowk. They, however, decided not to lodge a complaint with the police, stating they would not trouble the cops with such a complaint.

‘‘It would be very difficult for the police to catch such people. They should be ashamed of themselves. We have already been very unfortunate in losing him. If people will hurt us like that, it would become too difficult,’’ said Ishmeet's uncle, Dr CK Singh, who is a rabies expert in GADVASU.

‘‘I have no words to explain my grief over the act. I can only say that it is intolerance in the extreme. I fail to understand why anyone would stoop so low. The sweet voice only made the world and the country proud. Who can have such ill-will for him and that too when he is no more?’’ asked Dr Singh.

He added that they had immediately asked for the removal of the banner and ordered for a fresh one. ‘‘We hope this will not happen again. Otherwise, we will be forced to put up CCTV cameras on a private building to keep an eye on the chowk,’’ he said.

The shopkeepers in the area said they had seen the defaced banner in the morning only. The entire banner was intact but his picture was cut from the flex sheet.



Duty on captive power generation irks industry
Manav Mander
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 4
Vexed by the Punjab government's decision to levy an additional 5 per cent duty on electricity generated by captive power plants, the city’s industry has decided not to allow Punjab State Electricity Board to install meters on their generator sets.

Industrial units, which were already reeling under a heavy burden of taxes and trying to recover from the recession, received another jolt with the government issuing a notification yesterday that electricity duty at the rate of 5 per cent would be levied on power generated by plants with the help of generators.

While there is a mandatory power cut every week, industry also has put up with unannounced outages every now and then. “The government’s harsh move will leave industrial establishments in Punjab with no other option but to move out from the state”, say industrialists.

Members of the All Industries and Trade Forum jointly decided they would not allow PSEB to install meters on generator sets. “If any department forces us to do so the government will have to face industry’s wrath,” said Badish K Jindal, the forum’s co-convenor.

The meters will be installed by PSEB at the cost of the captive power plant’s owner. Industrial and commercial units with such plants will have to maintain records of the captive power generated and the records will be open to scrutiny by electrical inspectors/inspecting officers at any time. The records so maintained will be checked and audited once in three months.

“The Punjab government has miserably failed in supplying adequate power to industrial and other consumers. Industrial units have been trying to sustain operations by captive power generation, but now the government has put hurdles in that area as well,” said Apex Chamber of Commerce & Industry president PD Sharma.“The government levies entry tax on generator sets brought in from other states. Diesel used for running the sets has been made costlier by raising VAT. The central government has further burdened the industry by hiking excise on diesel. With these harsh measures industry in Punjab would find it difficult to survive,” Sharma added.

Upkar Singh, joint secretary of the Chamber of Industrial & Commercial Undertakings, said, “Industry is left with no other option but to shift to neighbouring states. The government is giving free power to farmers but on the other hand is burdening industry with unnecessary taxes. This will only lead to more corruption”.

“No industrialist can spare money to buy generator sets. The government should ensure regular power supply. Captive power production costs industry nearly 3.5 to 4 times more than regular electricity. The new tax will further push up the costs, which will eventually result in manufactured products costing more. Industry will become less competitive and be tempted to move to other states”, stated United Cycle & Parts Manufacturers Association president DS Chawla. 



Teachers turn tormentors
Snatch answer sheets before time, allege students
Charu Chhibber
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 4
In a classic case of teachers turning tormentors, a number of invigilators of class XII board exams have been accused of "snatching the answer sheets before time" from students. Due to this, many students were not able to complete their papers and would lose on marks.

Alleging that the invigilator snatched her answer sheet 15 minutes before the bell rang, a class XII commerce student of Sacred Heart Convent, Sarabha Nagar, said, "I was unable to complete my paper and missed an important six-mark question," rued the girl, who had her business studies paper today.

Another class XII commerce student of Greenland Public School added, "The invigilator started collecting the answer sheets at 1.15pm from us while there were still 15 minutes for the bell to ring. When we protested, we were badly snubbed and threatened by the teacher."

Incidentally, both students had KVM Senior Secondary School as their examination centre. Similar complaints were reported from other examination centres as well. A student of another school alleged that he missed out two questions resulting in a 12-mark loss as the invigilator snatched his answer sheet much before time. His examination centre was at DAV Public School.

He added, "Protest fell on deaf ears as the invigilator refused to listen to us." The students rued that they could not lodge a serious protest as none of the teachers from their schools were present on the spot.

Meanwhile, Principal of DAV, R.S. Patial, refuted all allegations of students. He said the answer sheets were collected at the right time but the students had the habit of complaining against invigilators, as they were themselves not able to answer all questions in time. The head of KVM school could not be contacted despite repeated attempts.

However, when acquainted with the goings-on, regional director (north), CBSE, DR Yadav retorted, "First prove that such a thing has happened in any school of the city, only then I will look into the matter," he retorted. Moreover, Yadav also refused to take the students' allegations seriously and said, "I do not see any reason behind the controversy."



Anti-narcotics cell raids SAD leader’s eating joint
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, March 4
Tough times are ahead for Akhtiar Singh Roomi, a Zila Parishad member and senior SAD leader from Roomi village near here. Last week, he as blamed by fellow villagers for grabbing the village common land by keeping somebody else in front. Yesterday, a team of the anti-narcotics cell from Ludhiana raided his eating joint. His name figures in the list whenever one talks about the peddling of opium and poppy husk.

The anti-narcotics cell team had came in search of opium and poppy husk. At the time of raid, Roomi was attending a religious function. When contacted, Roomi tried to dismiss the news.



SBI opens NRI special branch
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, March 4
With intent to provide better and prompt services to its NRI clients, the State Bank of India opened its 16th Dedicated NRI Special Branch at Fountain Chowk, Civil Lines, here today.

Deepti Sahai, general manager (NW I) inaugurated the first of its kind branch, in the region. Announcing a number of high-tech products in international banking and overseas remittance, Sahai advised authorities in the bank to ensure that the clients were given special attention so that they were encouraged to contribute maximum in strengthening the economy of the nation.

According to Tarun Sood, assistant general manager, the general manager had advised rank and file in the department to focus their attention on providing best available services to all clients in general and NRIs in particular. Keeping in view demands of the NRIs in present era of sophistication and globalization, the management had launched a number of high-tech products. SBI Express Remit UK, Instant Transfer, SWIFT / WIRE Transfer, International Money Order, Foreign Currency Cheques, were cited, as outstanding services besides Non-Resident (External) Rupee Account (NRE) , Foreign Currency Non-Resident Accounts ( FCNR) , Non-Resident Ordinary Rupee Account and ATM Gold Debt Card scheme.

Sood claimed that the organisation was already providing banking services through 134 foreign 
offices located in 32 countries of the world.

NRIs in Bahamas, Bahrain, Belgium, France , Hong Kong, Maldives , and Singapore can also approach SBI branches to avail Home Loans in India. Similarly NRIs in Muscat, Singapore, Bahrain, Johannesburg, London and Qatar can avail Online Banking pre-printed kits.

To collect feedback from the clients and monitor functioning of branches of the bank, Sahai along with other higher officials visited about six offices at random. Acknowledging faith posed in the bank, she urged the clients to pour in suggestion for further improvement of services.

VC Vajpayee, Dr Shri Ram W Bokhare, (DGMs), R K Mittal, AGM (Admin) were present on the occasion



PTC Music Awards 
Religious leaders campaign for Rajni
Our Correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh, March 4
Activists and office-bearers of a few religious organisations are all out to seek votes for amateur singer Rajni Jain Arya, who had been nominated for the “Best Debut Female Singer” in the “PTC Music Awards 2010”.

Besides canvassing for her during regular prayers, the enthusiasts have sent SMSes, carrying appeal in favour of Arya, to their friends and relatives.

Rajni is among those four female debut singers whose names have been recommended for the award sponsored by a company. Rajni is banking on her song “Laavo nee laavo mehndi” from her maiden commercial album “Menhdi” released recently.

The album contains songs depicting cultural background of all rituals starting from betrothal ceremony to arrival of bride at groom's house.

Paying gratitude to her fans for the campaign launched in her favour, Arya said she felt excited after coming to know about her nomination for the contest. Though she did not expect her name to be included in any of the lists, she is now concerned about feelings of her enthusiasts.

Banni, singing ‘Mahia’, Mandeep Kaur with ‘Challenge’ and Monika Bedi with ‘Ek Onkar’ are other contestants for the award. 



Ramming Incident: Cops fail to take action

Ludhiana, March 4
It has been four days since some unidentified miscreants intentionally rammed their vehicle into a music store, located on National Road in Ghumar Mandi, but the police has yet to take action.

The miscreants broke the shutter and counter of the music store. They not only smashed the vehicle in the shop but also uprooted telephone pole causing loss to the government property.

Sanjiv Kumar, owner of the music store, complained that the cops were not acting on his complaint. "A watchman who was an eyewitness narrated the entire incident. He told me that youths who were driving a white Ford Endeavor deliberately smashed the rear part of the vehicle into the shop. The watchman further said that he rammed the vehicle twice. On the third attempt, the vehicle hit the pole," complained Sanjiv. He further added that for the past four days, he had been visiting Division No 5 police station but the police had refused to register an FIR. — TNS



Martyr’s work to be included in Punjab board syllabi
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 4
Almost 300 years after Baba Moti Ram Mehra of Fatehgarh Sahib sacrificed his life to save the young Sahibzadas and Mata Gujri from the clutches of Mughals, the martyr finally got his due.

Acknowledging the bravery of Moti Ram, a Kashyap Rajput, Sewa Singh Sekhwan, minister for information and public relations, NRI affairs and defence services welfare, has announced that the state government would provide benefits to the girls belonging to the Kashyap Rajput community under the “Shagun Scheme”. He said Rs 15,000 would be given to the girls at the time of their marriage.

Besides, the life and work of Baba Moti Ram Mehra will be included in the syllabus of the Punjab School Education Board, so that our students could get inspiration from the life of martyrs. The minister announced a grant of Rs 1 lakh for the school run by the Kashyap Rajput community.

The minister made the announcement during his visit to Maharaja Ranjit Singh War Museum. He distributed Rs 1 crore among 23 families of the martyr soldiers.

He also addressed the grievances of the families of soldiers and assured timely solution of the problems.

He expressed satisfaction on the work done in the museum. He said the government was planning to pump in more funds to attract visitors. 



Pulse Polio Drive
Health officials review arrangements
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, March 4
Civil surgeon Dr Maninderjit Singh yesterday met senior medical officers (SMOs) and medical officers of the various civil dispensaries in the city for reviewing the arrangements for the next round of the pulse polio drive on March 7 to 9.

Dr Om Raj Goldy, WHO representative, who was present at the meeting, asked the SMOs and the medical officers to meet supervisors and vaccinators working under them so as to ensure that each and every child in the age group of 0-five years was immunised.

Dr KS Saini, district immunisation officer, and Dr Puneet Juneja, district paediatrician, urged supervisory officials to send detailed report of work done to the civil surgeon’s office. 



RTI Woes
Applicant alleges denial of info, LIT officials claim otherwise
Kuldip Bhatia

Ludhiana, March 4
Officials of the Ludhiana Improvement Trust (LIT) have been charged with failure to provide information asked for under the Right to Information Act within stipulated period by a city resident. The applicant asserted that the delay caused in providing the information was tantamount to refusal.

However, the LIT, on the other hand, has countered the allegation saying the application under the RTI Act has already been disposed off a fortnight ago and the desired information had been sent to the applicant under an official letter (836 dated 19-2-2010).

Sham Singh Harika, who is having a prolonged litigation with the LIT regarding allotment of a plot in 256 acre (Maharishi Valmiki Nagar) scheme, had filed an application under the RTI Act on December 2, 2009, seeking information from the trust about various residential schemes - conceived, launched in the city till now under the Punjab Town Improvement Act, and those which were later abandoned or some pockets of land were exempted in those schemes which were taken up for development.

The application also sought details of allottees who were allotted plots under locally displaced persons in each scheme, details of area exempted in the 256 acre scheme, and the actual area in which the development work was undertaken in this particular scheme. Further, Harika demanded information on allotment of plot No. 48-D in 275 acre scheme, which was allotted in the name of his father Dial Singh, but possession of the plot was not handed over by the trust to him.

He alleged that the LIT officials deployed to deal with applications under the RTI Act were evasive when he sought to ascertain the status of his application and the mandatory information on tentative time to be taken for disposal, was not intimated to him

Jagbir Singh, assistant information officer of the trust under the RTI Act, told The Tribune that information which could be provided to the applicant under the provisions of the Act, had already been supplied to the applicant on February 19, 2010. In case the letters, sent by the post as desired by the applicant, had not been delivered to him, he could obtain a copy of the same from the LIT office on submission of a written request to this effect.

He added that as far as the details of persons to whom plots in different schemes of the trust were allotted under locally displaced persons, and which has been sought by the applicant, can not be given out as these lists are considered confidential.



Don’t sell cultivable land, farmers advised
Our Correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh,March 4
Growing tendency among peasants to sell their cultivable land in order to meet domestic contingencies; has been viewed as threat to ground economy of the border state.

These farmers have been advised to preserve their lands, as they (farmers), according to thinkers are going to be ultimate regulators of the state economy in decades to come.

Terming agriculture as the backbone of the economy of Punjab, speakers like former Vice-Chancellor Punjabi University, Patiala, Swaran Singh Boparai and NRI Zabar Singh Grewal apprehended that growing tendency of farmers to dispose off agricultural land in order to meet domestic contingencies would shatter the economy of the state and the nation as well.

While talking to The Tribune after interacting with a group of farmers at Jhoondhan village, Boparai and Grewal maintained that preserving cultivable land was required for saving the economy from shattering.

“Unfortunately none of the agencies has tried to visualise consequences of growing tendency of farmers to sell their land in order to meet domestic contingencies like marriages and social functions. Unfortunately, a few farmers disposed off their precious land for sending their wards in foreign countries in search of greener pastures,” lamented Boparai.

Regretting that politicians and bureaucrats had failed to understand gravity of the situation Zabar Singh Grewal maintained that hundreds of disappointed farmers, who had committed suicide for obvious financial constraints, could have been saved, had they (politicians and bureaucrats) performed their ideal role. Situation could have been worse, had NRI wards of farmers not contributed to save properties from being sold.

Substantiating views put forth by the speakers Dr Harjinder Singh Walia, chairman the Global Punjab Foundation called upon journalists to play their role in spreading awareness about importance of preservation of the nonrenewable resources including agricultural land.

“Unfortunately vernacular media has also undermined importance of educating small and marginal farmer about consequences of ignoring priorities of their profession. They (farmers) should have been warned about upshot of changed lifestyle that diverted huge amounts toward social functions, thus collapsing their individual economy,” maintained Walia. 



Civil hospital raided
Our Correspondent

Mandi Gobindgarh, March 4
Minister for health and family welfare Laxmi Kanta Chawla raided the local civil hospital at 9.30 pm last night.

Director (Health) SPS Sohal was also present on the occasion.The hospital’s building was found to be in a dilapidated condition. The minister assured to release a grant for the setting up a hospital in a new building. The minister said the ESI hospital at Guru Ki Nagri which had not been functioning for the past many years was also inaugurated during the present SAD-BJP regime.



CAs discuss Union Budget
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 4
An informative seminar on the 2010-11 Budget was organised by the Ludhiana branch of the Northern India Regional Council of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India at ICAI Bhawan.

Girish Ahuja, a noted tax consultant from Delhi, who has also written a large number of books on taxation, was the keynote speaker. He discussed at length important implications of the Budget with reference to direct taxes, with a clause wise analysis of proposed changes in the Income Tax Act 1961.

Providing his perspectives on the Budget proposals, he elaborated on their import for individuals, the salaried class and the business community, dealing with key clauses in detail.

The seminar in particular covered issues like continuity of issuance of TDS (tax deducted at source) forms, new tax incentives for hotel industry, implications of increase in tax audit limits for businessmen and professionals, taxation provisions regarding limited liability partnership and other proposed provisional changes in the Income Tax Act 1961.

The participants not only immensely benefited from the insights provided by Ahuja but received answers to their questions as well. At least 400 chartered accountants, including those from Ludhiana, Khanna, Gobindgarh, Moga and surrounding areas, attended the seminar.

CA branch chairman Hukminder Sahi along with office-bearers and prominent members of the branch, welcomed Ahuja. CA branch secretary Rachit Bhandari conducted the programme. Vishal Garg was specifically honoured for being elected as vice-chairman of the Northern India Regional Council of ICAI.



Youth Cong slams SAD-BJP govt
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, March 4
The District Youth Congress has slammed the SAD-BJP government in Punjab for what it described as reign of terror let lose against agitating employees and teachers, including women.

Addressing a party meeting in Block No 13 on the Malhar road here, District Youth Congress president Dimple Rana said on one hand the NGOs and mainstream parties, including the Youth Congress, were working against the female foeticide while on the other, the government had given a free hand to the police for dealing with agitating teachers and employees in a repressive manner.

“Not only the crime against women have increased under the regime of the present government, the recent suicide of an unemployed woman teacher has also failed to move the government, which seems to have taken a decision to silence all voices of dissent ruthlessly and in an inhuman way," charged Rana.

He said the youth icon of the Congress, Rahul Gandhi, had been able to motivate and mobilise a large number of youths in the party’s favour with the result that ranks and file of the Congress and its youth wing had grown enormously in numbers.

The District Youth Congress president announced the nomination of Raghav Chum and Pradeep Singh as secretaries of block No. 13 and 56, respectively.

Former minister Harnam Das Johar urged the youth brigade to reach out to the masses and prepare ground for ouster of the SAD-BJP in the next assembly elections.



Field Day
Over 500 farmers take part in seminar
Our Correspondent

Mullanpur Dakha, March 4
The Agriculture Department in collaboration with the Co-operative society, Lalton Khurd, and Jhande and the PAU, Ludhiana, organised a seminar-cum-workshop to mark the national field day.

Ludhiana Chief Agriculture Officer Dr Yadwinder Singh Chhina was the chief guest of the seminar that was held in the co-operative society building of Lalton Khurd village while Dr Baldev Singh Sivia, (retired), Chief Agriculture Officer from Barnala, and chairman Maghar Singh Braich were the guests of honour. Resource persons from PAU including senior agronomist

Dr Surjit Singh, senior soil scientists Dr Dalwinderjit Singh and Dr Surinder Singh Kukkal and Dr DS Benipal. Agriculture officers of Ludhiana block Dr Parkash Singh, Dr Amanjit Singh, Dr Sukhpal Singh, Nirmal Singh and Dr Jagdev Singh were also present in the seminar.

The seminar was organised under the Agriculture Technology Management Agency (ATMA) of Punjab and was focused on crop diversification and conservation of natural and non natural resources. More than 500 farmers from all villages of Ludhiana block had participated in the seminar and the queries raised were answered by the present resource specialists.

The specialists mainly stressed on multiple crop cultivation system with alternative crops. They also laid stress on adopting the crops that required low usage of water from sowing till harvesting and slowly transform from paddy cultivation to other crops. The farmers were informed that the cultivation of pulses were highly profitable on one hand and water saving on the other hand. They sought co-operation of farmers to make the National Grain Security Mission (Pulses) a success in the interest of the nation and coming generation.

The conservation of natural and artificial resources was sought by the experts. The experts expressed their apprehensions that in future the problem of food grains would be alarming. They said on one hand, the population was rising at an alarming rate, while the area under cultivation was decreasing. Moreover, the productivity of the land was also decreasing and under these conditions there was no other substitute to adopt scientific methods to raise productivity of the foodgrains.

The soil scientists favoured the use of residue of agriculture produces as a method of natural fertilisers along with animal manure. They said the use of insecticides, pesticides and chemical fertilisers should be minimal as per need, as the nitrogen might increase the probability of fatal diseases specially in children, if it was used more on land. 



From Schools & Colleges
'Good luck party' for KG kids of BCM School
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 4
A 'good luck party' was organised to bid goodbye to the kindergarten section at BCM School, Dugri, with great enthusiasm. The day started on a happy note with kids coming in colourful and bright attires. The tiny tots enjoyed various fun games as they participated in one-minute games and musical chairs. They sang songs and tapped their feet to the tunes of various hit songs like "Twist", "Maujan hi maujan" etc. The kids shared snacks and beverages with their friends. It was a mixed feeling of happiness as they were going to a new class and they were a little sad as they were leaving their affectionate teachers.

New principal

Dr RL Behl took charge as the principal of Kamla Lohtia SD College today. The governing body of the college and prominent personalities of the town were present at the time of Behl's joining, including former principal ML Anand, Dr DV Jindal, Brij Mohan Ralhan, Mahavir Parshad Nahria, Sunil Aggarwal, Sandeep Aggarwal, former principal Dr SM Sharma, principal Dr TL Joshi, Dharam Pal Jain, R D Singla, Kewal Krishan Marwaha, Rajneesh Jain, Pardeep Mittal, VS Chopra and Prem Prashar. Prof Rajinder Bhandari and former BJP President, Punjab, also visited the college to congratulate Behl.

President Naveen Mittal said the college would scale new heights in the times to come under the dynamic leadership of Behl. Behl is an alumnus of University Business School and has a vast teaching experience of 30 years. He did his doctorate from Punjabi University, Patiala, in 2007. He also has two books to his credit and has been member of faculty of the Business Management And Commerce of Panjab University, Chandigarh, since 1995. He has also been a member of the undergraduate and postgraduate board of studies in the Commerce And Business Management, PU.

Environment awareness

An environment awareness programme was conducted by Government High School, Sarabha Nagar, under the project given by the State Council of Science and Technology. A mass procession was carried out for educating the public and school children about the importance of environment protection. A lecture was also delivered by an expert. Activities like chart making, debate and quiz were also organised on the occasion.


A workshop by Primary Plus was held at GD Goenka Public School today. The aspects covered in the workshop were different methods of teaching, understanding brain functioning, relationships, feelings and perceptions and the brain career. The workshop was conducted in various schools across the nation, including DPS Dwarka, DPS Amritsar, Apeejay School Saket, Birla Institute of Management, DAV Vikaspuri, Delhi Police School and many more. The workshop proved to be a great help for the teachers. It was beneficial in all the spheres of teaching and classroom learning.

Talent search

The TIME Institute visited Guru Nanak Dev Engineering College for a talent search exam for CAT exam. A warm welcome was extended to TIME central director Puneet Walia and KPS Walia, centre coordinator Vinod Sachdeva and faculty member Divya Pillai by Dr MS Saini, director, GNDEC, and Prof KS Mann, dean, training and placement cell. The students who performed outstandingly included Shveta Berry, Saurabh Bassi and Pushkar Shanker who stood first, second and third respectively



Parking space
MC yet to act against defaulters
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 4
In majority of markets, parking lots outside buildings, restaurants, malls and marriage palaces are being used for commercial purposes. Though the municipal authorities claim to act tough with defaulters, a lot remains to be done.

Congress councillor Parminder Mehta said unless the corporation acted tough, the problem of traffic could not be solved. The issue was even raised in the general house meeting of the corporation on February 15. At the time of the clearing of maps, owners showed proper parking space and the authorities gave a go ahead, but once everything was cleared, nobody bothered to follow the rules.

“The corporation has to act tough and this is possible only when officials adopt a follow-up procedure,” he said, adding that he had sent a letter in this regard to the Municipal Commissioner recently. Some parking space is being used as godown while a few have kept generators and other stock there. The problem is worse in areas like Pindi Street, Gujjar Mal Road, Talab and Chawal bazaars and Field Ganj where a major part of the road is blocked by two-wheelers.



1.5 kg opium seized, 3 arrested

Doraha, March 4
The Payal police has arrested three drug peddlers and seized more than 1 kg opium and cartridges from their possession.The DSP and his team raided a place near Chummon village and arrested Jagtar Singh, alias Tara Singh, and Gurjit Singh, both residents of Chummon village and recovered 1.5 kg opium from them. Another raid was conducted at the house of Gurjit Singh. 

About 63 cartridges (.32 bore) and two cartridges (12 bore) were recovered from his possession. Whereas, Gurpreet Singh was arrested from Ber Khurd village and 12 kg poppy husks seized from his possession. — OC



Two booked for beating up man
Tribune News Service

Khanna, March 4
Two persons were booked yesterday for allegedly beating up and injuring a resident of Harion Kalan village. In a complaint lodged with the police Jasvir Singh had alleged that the two accused- Bikkar Singh and Surjit Singh of the same village-had beaten him up near the village and fled away from the spot leaving Jasvir in a pool of blood.

Jasvir was rushed to a nearby hospital. According to the complainant, he had objected to the cigarette smoking by the accused over which they beat him up. Efforts were on to nab the accused.

Meanwhile, a man identified as Amit Sharma, a local resident, was arrested from near Salaudi village yesterday about 5 gram smack seized from his possession. A case has been registered against the accused under the NDPS Act.

In another incident, Narinder Singh, a resident of Nandi Colony, was arrested for firing in air. A case was registered on a complaint of Sanjay Mohan. The complaint alleged that the accused had created panic among the residents. Sanjay said the accused fired a few shots from his revolver after he refused to give a cold drink from his shop.

A resident of Krishna Nagar sustained injuries after being hit by a speeding truck yesterday. Sudesh Kumar, the victim, alleged that truck driver Narinder Singh, a resident of Manjola village in Patiala, had hit him when he was walking on the Lalheri road. The truck driver fled away from the spot. Sudesh was rushed to the local civil hospital by passers by and shopkeepers. A case was registered against the truck driver.

Two cyclists sustained injuries when a speeding Maruti 800 car hit them near the SDM’s residence on the Amloh road today. The injured have been identified as Rakesh Kumar and his friend Devinder Singh. The vehicle could not be identified. However, passers by noted the car’s registration number down.


Arrested: A motorcyclist was stopped near a naka and arrested after 23 kg poppy plants was seized from his possession. The accused has been identified as Gurdeep Singh, a resident of Nurpur village. Gurdeep had hidden the plants in a bag. A case has been registered.



3 booked in dowry case
Tribune News Service

Khanna, March 4
Three persons,including a husband and his parents, have been booked for demanding dowry from a newly married woman of Rampur village.In a complaint lodged with the police Jaspreet Kaur alleged that she her husband Sarabjit Singh, son of Sukhdev Singh, had been demanding dowry since their marriage.

A case has been registered against Sarabjit Singh, his parents Sukhdev Singh and Manjit Kaur.

Jaspreet’s parents said they had given dowry to the boy’s family as per their wishes. However, the boy’s parents demanded more dowry a few days ago. Irritated over the non-fulfillment of their demand the boy and his parents started harassing their daughter, they alleged. They demanded Rs 2 lakh and the boy left his wife in her parents house in Rampur a few days ago. 



Another youth murdered in Manila
Our Correspondent

Raikot, March 4
A youth of Jalaldiwal village, near here, is reported to have succumbed to his bullet injuries in Manila, the capital of Philippines.Satpal Singh Poonia (23) was shot dead at by some youths last Monday.

He was returning from his work place in the morning on his motorcycle when the assailants equipped with firearms hidden to shot him attacked all of a sudden.

Jaswant Kaur, deaf, dumb widow and mother of the deceased is now seeking the government intervention in getting the body of her son air lifted to India for cremation as per religious rites.

Satpal had migrated to Philippines three years ago after selling three acre of his agriculture land to set up his business.

He went there along with Balraj Singh, alias Bittu, of the same village and tragically Balraj was also murdered last year in October when some unidentified natives stabbed him. 



Three held for murder
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 4
With the arrest of three persons, the city police has managed to crack a blind-murder case that took place around a month ago in which a driver was stabbed to death by snatchers near Grain Market near Shimlapuri.

The accused have been identified as Maninder Singh, Shukwinder Singh and Parminder Singh, all residents of Shimlapuri and surrounding areas, were nabbed from Gill railway station. The fourth accused Rajinder Singh, alias Babbi, managed to flee the scene.

Narrating the episode, DSP Narinderpal Singh said the incident took place on February 2, around 9pm, when Tersem Singh, who was working as a driver with Sarpanch Thakur Singh was returning to the city after dropping one of the relative at a village near Alamgir.

The DSP said when Tersem reached near Ishwar Singh Nagar, the accused came in front of his vehicle and requested the victim to give them a lift. Tersem agreed and allowed them to sit in the car. When they reached near the grain market in Shimlapuri, the accused stabbed Tersem and threw him out of the moving vehicle.

The victim raised alarm following which people managed to stop the vehicle. But the assailants fled the scene.

Tersem was rushed to GTB hospital where his succumbed to injuries. The accused were produced before the court and were further sent on police remand.



Love all set to fire in IPL
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 4
After the extinction of breakaway Indian Cricket League (ICL), the local lad Love Ablish(26) is all set for his new spell, this time, he will represent Kings XI Punjab in the Indian Premier League (IPL).

This skinny lad from small town Doraha, has played almost on every circuit. Be it Ranji Trophy five-day test matches, one-day or even twenty- 20, this man has seen it all.

Ablish was in the city to promote his team. He met fans, fellow cricketers and sold IPL ticket.

The frontline bowler of Punjab has seen all the ups and down in his career, but it was his sheer passion for the game that made him the most sought-after player amongst the IPL franchisers.

Now this 'pocket size dynamite' is eager to stage an emphatic comeback with the BCCI --backed IPL beginning from March 13.

Hailing from a humble family, this Doraha-based cricketer is popularly known as "Shakti" in the neighboring villages for his fast bowling.

But life has never been a joy ride for Ablish, working as a helper at his father's small shoe shop at Doraha, he used to travel over 25km for training at the Ludhiana District Cricket Association's (LDCA's) cricket coaching camp at Arya College for Boys.

Ablish took up the game when he was 18 years old, a time when majority of the cricketers hang their shoes bidding adieu to the game and start perusing their career. Ablish stood tall against all odds and proved time and again that he could turn the tide in his favour.

Luck was also on his way and he was quickly selected for the Ludhiana District Under-19 cricket team in 2000-2001. Proving the selectors right, he notched 25 wickets in five matches. As a reward for his performance, he was selected for the Ranji Trophy camp. In the same year, he played in the Punjab Under-19 cricket team and played three one-day matches in which he notched six wickets.

Since then there was no looking back for the cricketer. Soon he took up a job in Income Tax Department and further picked up by the rival league ICL on hefty contract of Rs 70 lakh.

"Despite, the stars like Brian Lara, the rival league failed to click and soon closed down," said Love and further added, "Twenty-20 is not new for me. I have played it earlier also. I know what kind of skills it takes to win the game"

He said, "It is like a fairytale. Playing in the dusty streets of Doraha, I never thought that one day I would be playing against Sachin Tendulkar and would share a dressing room with Bret Lee."

I am quite excited about my new assignment and looking forward to play an important role for Chandigarh lions," he said.



B.Ed colleges hold badminton tourney
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 4
The GHG Harparkash College of Education, Sidhwan Khurd, won the Punjab University Inter-College Badminton Championship of B.ed colleges held recently Punjab University, Chandigarh.The team won gold medal for their stupendous performance. The shuttlers Manpreet Kaur, Rupinder Kaur, Satinder Kaur, Ranvir Kaur and Gurpreet Kaur were honoured by the college authorities for bringing laurels to the college.

Dr Baljit Kaur Gill, principal of the college, congratulated the winners for their achievement. 



Kings XI campaign results in traffic jam
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 4
The IPL promotion campaign organised by Kings XI Punjab resulted in a traffic jam at Feroze Gandhi Market here today.Serpentine queues of vehicle were seen in the market while the campaign was on. A huge screen was installed in a mini- bus and it was stationed at a parking lot in Feroze Gandhi Market in the afternoon, when the market is busy.

No sooner the KXIP organisers started the IPL campaign, enthusiastic crowd started gathering around the bus.

Commuters, who were visiting the Feroze Gandhi market also stopped their vehicles in the middle of the road to witness the event.

"It was utter chaos. Amidst honking of horns I could barely hear anything. Further, the people were shouting at each other to clear the route in order to move their vehicle," said Sidharth, who came to watch the promotional campaign.

However, local lad and skipper of Punjab Ranji Trophy one -day squad Karan Goel disappointed the city fans as he did not turn for the promotional campaign. But speedster Love Ablish kept his promise and met the fans. He also sold tickets of the ensuing DLF IPL.



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 |