L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Woman barges into MLA’s office, held
Charu Chhibber
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 28
Lovelorn and denied reciprocation, a woman landed local MLA and Chief Parliamentary Secretary, Local Bodies, Harish Rai Dhanda, in an extremely embarrassing situation here last evening after she was denied a meeting with him.

The woman (identity concealed) barged into the MLA’s office last evening and demanded to meet him. On being informed that Dhanda was not present, she started misbehaving with the office staff, pushing and shoving them. When stopped from doing so, the woman hurled bricks at the office staff, broke the windowpanes and even hurt one of the employees.

The situation was brought under control only after the police was called in. She was arrested on charges of creating nuisance.

Talking to Ludhiana Tribune, Dhanda revealed that the woman had stalked him for the past three-and-a-half years. “The woman had been writing 200-page-long, voluminous letters in Hindi and Punjabi to me, which are replete with vulgar and improper language,” he added.

She had also been making numerous phone calls to him “at odd hours, using uncouth words”.

Dhanda also alleged that the woman, who does not seem to be well educated, often wrote e-mails to him expressing her feelings for him.

The MLA further revealed that he had also received numerous parcels from her with idols of Gods and Goddesses and black magical charms in them.

“She had landed me in embarrassing situations on numerous occasions, including one wherein she barged into the Assembly session to meet me. I had to send her back to avoid any ugly situation. She had also been approaching various politicians in order to be able to talk to me,” he remarked.

Dhanda also added that the woman had been collecting clippings of his photographs from posters put up at public places, election materials and newspapers, which, he said, “Clearly reflects her obsessive behaviour.”

“Sick of her conduct, I had filed a complaint against her about eight-nine months ago but took it back on her husband’s request,” he added.

The MLA said following his complaint, the woman’s husband, who runs a business of old tires in the city, had even filed a case in the court, seeking permission to send her to a mental asylum for “psychic behavior,” he added.

Dhanda informed that the woman had visited his house about two days ago and was denied entry as he was not at home.” However, she came to my office last evening and misbehaved with my staff, following which the cops were called, who took her into custody,” he said.

Meanwhile, a case has been registered against the woman under Sections 353, 186, 323, 452, 506 and 427 of the IPC at the Division No. 5 police station.


DTO touts back to business after raid
Anshu Seth
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 28
Within less than 24 hours after the ‘surprise’ raid conducted at the city’s district transport office (DTO) by Punjab Transport Minister Mohan Lal, ‘commission agents’ were back on the scene fleecing people in the name of expediting their pending work.

The agents, in connivance with clerks working in different branches of the office, charge extra money applicants for a driver’s licence and vehicle registration certificate.

The existing ‘rates’ charged for a registration certificate (RC) by the commission agents are Rs 250 for a motorcycle or scooter, Rs 500 for a car and Rs 500-700 for a commercial vehicle. Even the transfer of a RC is a cumbersome process at the DTO and the agents charge Rs 500 for cars and Rs 100 for motorcycles and scooters to expedite movement of the relevant files.

At the same time city residents, in order to save themselves from harassment at the hands of the clerical staff, readily pay the ‘commission’ to get a permanent driver’s licence. The agents’ ‘rates’ for the extra money vary from Rs 250 to Rs 350 for motorcycles and scooters and cars. For heavy vehicles the agents have fixed the amount at Rs 500.

Getting a driver’s licence renewed is also a problem at the district transport office with applicants having to shell out Rs 200 for a heavy vehicle and Rs 100 for a light vehicle.

Interestingly, a stipulated share from all ‘commissions’ paid to the agents is given to the DTO clerks, who refuse to move the relevant files before getting the money.

To add to residents’ problems, there is no system of filing records at the DTO, which causes inordinate delays in issuance of RCs and driver’s licences to applicants. The office has outsourced maintenance of records, which gives the clerks a chance to overcharge applicant with the colluding agents.

DTO official skirts issue

I’m not authorised to speak on the matter in an official capacity. I wasn’t in the office yesterday when minister Mohal Lal came. Moreover, I don't know anything about the corrupt practices said to be prevalent at the office.

— Assistant district transport officer Tarlochan Singh



Fire officer caught accepting bribe
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 28
Cracking a whip against corrupt officials, the Vigilance Bureau today caught assistant divisional fire officer Kartar Singh red handed while accepting a bribe of Rs 5,000 after a trap was laid following a complaint.

Kartar Singh was arrested from the fire brigade office near the old bus stand at around 3 pm today in the presence of official witnesses ETO Deepinder Singh Garcha, excise and taxation inspector Dharmendra Kumara and shadow witness Rajesh Kumar.

Complainant Shakti, branch administrator, ICICI Prudential Life Insurance Corporation, had approached the Vigilance Bureau stating that he had approached Kartar Singh for the issuance of “fire break out” certificate after a fire had broken at his office situated at Feroze Gandhi market.

Shakti told the Vigilance Bureau that Kartar Singh had demanded Rs 10,000 for issuing the certificate, which is required to claim insurance but had settled for Rs 5,000 as illegal gratification.

Following the complaint, the Vigilance Bureau laid a trap to nab Kartar Singh and caught him red handed today. A case has been registered against him under Sections 7, 13 (2) and 88 of the Prevention of Corruption Act.



Dugri Phase II
MC fails, doesn’t let people develop park
Kuldip Bhatia

Ludhiana, April 28
An undeveloped park in the Dugri Phase II Colony, developed by the Punjab Urban Planning and Development Authority (PUDA) here, has become a bone of contention between the motivated residents of the area and the civic body. Even as the colony stands fully developed for almost a decade now, the said park (175-D) has remained neglected both by PUDA and the Municipal Corporation to whom the colony was later transferred for the maintenance.

Whereas the residents, having failed to move the Municipal Corporation into action for the development of the park for almost two years now, have taken upon themselves to develop and maintain it with funds raised from the residents. The work had also been started to raise the boundary wall around the park. However, the Municipal Corporation officials intervened and forced the residents to stop the work after another group of residents lodged a complaint apprehending that the piece of land might be unlawfully encroached upon.

Lamenting the apathy of the civic body, Amandeep Singh, a resident of the locality, said the people of the colony had moved an application with the Municipal Corporation authorities for the development of the said park in September 2008, and the matter was again followed up with the officials concerned in March this year without evoking any response.

“The vacant plot meant for the development of a public park has become a big source of nuisance for the residents. Domestic waste and garbage is dumped at this place and the entire area is flooded with water during rainy reason, which poses a threat of an outbreak of seasonal diseases. Not only this, the plot has become a thoroughfare for all kinds of vehicles and the residents, especially children run the risk of being knocked down by speeding vehicles,” he added.

Many other area residents said they had approached the SDO concerned and the junior engineer of the area to plead with them for early development of the park so that the residents could avail the facility to which they were entitled.

“To our dismay, the Municipal Corporation officials told us that estimates for development of the parks in the area prepared last year are yet to be cleared and an estimate for this particular park will also take as much, if not more, time.”

Karamjit Singh, another resident, said: “Realising the dire need for the public utility, several residents came forward and collected Rs 50,000 with contributions ranging between Rs 10,000 and Rs 500 so that development of the park can be started. However, the work had to be stopped at its initial stage on the directions of the Municipal officials.”

Municipal Commissioner AK Sinha, who also holds the charge of the PUDA Chief Administrator, said the intention of the residents in taking up development of the park at their own level might be noble, but they ought to have followed the proper procedure and should have obtained prior permission for taking up the work. “Let them come to us with a formal request to develop the park with their own funds and we shall get it examined.

Municipal Commissioner AK Sinha, who also holds the charge of the PUDA Chief Administrator, said residents’ willingness to develope the park on their own might be a noble idea, but they ought to have followed the proper procedure and obtained prior permission for taking up the work. Let them come to us with a formal request for developing the park with their own funds and we shall get it examined



LED to illuminate city
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 28
For turning the dream of illuminating the city with the energy-saving lights into reality, Asit Sen Gupta, a consultant from the Bureau of Energy Efficiency, New Delhi, was in the city today for discussing the viability of project with senior officials of the Ludhiana Municipal Corporation. If this Rs 90-crore project, on which the municipal authorities are working hard, gets the consultant’s nod, then the Luminous Electronic Devices (LED) will not only brighten the city but also generate revenue for the civic body by providing a portion from its energy saving share.

One of the top municipal officials told The Tribune that tenders for the pilot project had already been floated in various sections of media. Four companies from all over India had approached the corporation for getting the contract. “We have to make the choice from four major companies. The consultant had visited us and we have had detailed discussions on the viability of the project. The copy of the request for tenders has already been given to the consultant. Within a few days, we will be able to know all technicalities”; the official said adding that if the project starts in the city, it will be of great use.

According to sources, the company, which will be given the contract, will invest the entire money. Besides, it will provide about 20 per cent share of energy saving to the corporation but remaining 80 per cent share will be of the company’s alone. “By installing these lights, the company will immediately save 60 per cent of power.

Today the corporation is paying a whopping amount of Rs 30 crore on the Electricity Bill (annually), if these lights are installed, company will be able to save several crores in the first year itself. One light with plenty of small bulbs costs between Rs 15 to Rs 20,000 and the average life of each light is approximately of 1-lakh hour.



Narrow link roads causing accidents
Gurdeep Singh Mann
Tribune News Service

Khamano, April 28
Farmers in villages near Khamano have encroached upon the link roads for the past several years due to which the width of these have narrowed down. This has resulted in a large number of accidents.

Encroachments could be seen on both sides of the link roads in almost all villages of Fatehgarh Sahib, due to which accidents are on the rise.

The stones demarcating these roads have also been done away with by the farmers. “There has been a rise in accidents and most of the victims are reportedly two-wheeler riders who fail to balance themselves whenever heavy vehicles, including buses and trucks overtake,” said Prem Singh of Khamano.

He said his son and nephew were hit by a speeding bus on the Khamano-Bassi road as it is too narrow for even a bicycle to run parallel to a heavy vehicle.

Bicyclists and scooterists usually have to stop and give way to the speeding buses. He said the situation worsens during night in the absence of electricity.

The link roads must be at least 24-foot wide, however, two-to-three-foot of roads from both sides has been encroached upon and it has drastically reduced the road’s width.

The farmers refuse to handover the the encroached land and buy time from the administration on the pretext of standing crops and assure to leave after the harvesting season.

However, after the harvesting of crops they approach the local or state-level politicians to get rid of the administrative officials.

The vehicles plying on these roads usually fall due to the lack of soil to support the roads due to erosion. “At some places one has to drive slow as the road is a few feet above the ground-level and there is no soil on both sides,” said Harmeet Singh.

Such encroachments could be seen at Lohari village in Bassi Pathana,

Nogawan and Khant villages in Khamano and various other villages on the Ludhiana-Chandigarh road of the district.

The traffic police officials admit that commuters suffer and also receive injuries due to narrow roads, but say that it’s up to the administration to look into the problem.

Besides minor accidents, some major accidents have also been reported on these roads during winters, night and in dense fog.

Meanwhile, Manjit Kaur, chairperson of Human Rights Manch, Khamano, demanded action against encroachers.



Residents demand removal of ‘illegal’ unipole
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 28
Even though the committee on ‘advertisement reforms’ has submitted its report to municipal corporation officials, unauthorized unipole advertising signs continue to be installed in the city. The panel was set up by the civic body to report on the status of unipole signs and billboards installed illegally in the city.

One such unipole, belonging to a telecom firm, erected at Gol Market in Model Town has invited severe criticism from city residents. Arvind Sharma, a ‘social activist’, today alleged the particular unipole was put up illegally a few days back.

"It’s creating a lot of inconvenience both to commuters and passers. Installed in the middle of road, this unipole sign needs to be uprooted immediately. We’ve been fighting for removal of such unipoles but MC officials appear to be turning a blind eye to more of such illegal structures being put up with each passing day", said Sharma. “Permission for erecting such a unipole shouldn't have been given by the MC”, he added.

Sharma has already filed several complaints to the Punjab Human Rights Commission, Chandigarh for removal of such unipoles from sidewalks and areas that were not demarcated for such structures by the MC.

After the issue of illegal advertisements and billboards rocked the civic body several times, an ‘advertisement reforms’ committee was constituted by MC officials to get feedback. The nine-member panel, which has submitted its report, has suggested all hoardings on private buildings be removed immediately. Besides, it has demarcated several other locations where unipole signs can be installed.

MC additional commissioner MC Kamalpreet Brar, when asked about the unipole sign in question, said, “I have to get it checked whether the place is demarcated for installation of a unipole or not. If it has been erected illegally we’ll immediately get it removed”.



SC Verdict
Congress MLA asks Badal, Dhanda to quit
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, April 28
Harmohinder Singh Pardhan, Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee vice-president and Raikot legislator, today asked Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal and Chief Parliamentary Secretary Harish Rai Dhanda to quit in wake of the Supreme Court verdict in favour of former Chief Minister Amarinder Singh.

Presiding over a meeting of the Youth Organisation of India here, he said the expulsion of Capt Amarinder Singh from the Assembly for alleged breach of privilege was proof of the politics of vendetta being unleashed by the SAD-BJP government against its opponents.

“The decision of the apex court has distinctly defined the powers of the state legislature and the judiciary, which in the long run will do a lot of good to the democratic set-up in the country,” he said.

He said Badal and Dhanda, who headed the house committee which indicted Capt Amarinder Singh in the so-called land scam, had no moral or constitutional right to stay in power after the apex court ruled that the Assembly had gone beyond its power in expelling the former Chief Minister.

In a scathing attack on Dhanda, Youth Organisation of India president Maninder Pal Singh said it was ironic that Dhanda had become party to an illegal and unconstitutional decision, which had now been revoked by the Supreme Court.

Amarjit Singh Tikka, Gurdev Singh Lapran, Simran Pal Soni, Kanwaljit Singh, Jaswinder Singh, Jaspreet Bakshi, Jaspal Khurana, Amandeep Singh Dang, Amarpal Singh, Rahul Gujral and Ramesh Sood were present at the meeting.



Insurance co told to pay Rs 50,000
Our Legal Correspondent

Ludhiana, April 28
The District Consumer Disputes Redressal Forum has ordered HDFC Standard Life Insurance Company Limited to make the payment of Rs 50,000 to family members of a person who died within a week after applying for the policy.

The orders came on a complaint lodged by deceased Ranbir Singh’s son Didarpreet Singh and mother Harjit Kaur of Jhambali Khas, Nabha, Patiala district.

According to complaint, Ranbir Singh had applied for getting the insurance policy. He deposited Rs 50,000 on October 4, 2008. Later he suffered a heart attack and expired on October 10, 2008.

Thereafter, the father of deceased lodged the claim but no claim was paid. It was alleged that the company denied the claim on flimsy grounds. Whereas, the company officials submitted that the proposal for getting policy was accepted. The policy was to commence from October 8, 2008.

It was pleaded that as per the policy, no claim was payable if a person dies within 90 from taking the policy except in the case of accidental death. The death due to heart attack was a natural one. That’s why the claim was not given.

But after appreciating the evidence, the forum observed that there was no enforceable contract between the parties. As the company had given option to go through the terms and conditions of the policy within 15 days, which was the free look period. But unfortunately, Ranbir Singh died before getting the said document containing terms and conditions. So, there was no consent on the part of the deceased, which was essential for the completion of the contract. So, the company should return the amount of premium along with the interest.



Housefed disburses housing loans of over Rs 17 crore
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, April 28
Housefed had disbursed housing loans worth Rs 1705.18 lakh among its member housing cooperative societies during the last financial year.

The cooperative body had earned a profit of Rs 730.45 lakh during the year, which was significantly higher than the 2008-09 financial year, which stood at Rs 446.39 lakh.

This was stated by VK Bansal, managing director of Housefed, while addressing a general body meeting at the community centre in Aggar Nagar here today.

Housefed chairman Krishan Kumar Bawa presided over the session. Swarnjit Singh, additional registrar, cooperative societies, represented the state government. Harkirat Singh Gill, Bhagat Singh, Karminder Singh, Gurpreet Singh Dhillon and Sahib Singh Mand attended the session.

Addressing a meeting of Housefed’s board of directors earlier, Bawa said a resolution had been adopted for the acquisition of 10 acres at Banur for the construction of 800 ultra-modern residential flats.

The construction of 912 flats at a six-storeyed residential complex at Banur was already in progress, he said. In addition, 90 flats in Ludhiana and 168 in Amritsar were almost ready for occupation, he added.

He further stated that an agreement had been signed for the purchase of 65 acres at Faridkot for a housing complex. Housefed would provide housing loans worth Rs 50 crore for the construction of about 2,500 houses to cooperative societies during the current financial year, he added.



Income Tax Act
Amendment makes small traders cheerful
Manav Mander
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 28
Amendment in the Income Tax Act (Section 44 AD) has made the small traders cheerful. It is applicable from the current financial year. Sometimes the small traders fail to maintain account books. After this amendment, they won’t be required to show it to the income tax department.

According to the amendment, any trader except the transporter, companies and limited-liability partnership firms can show 8 per cent profit of its annual turnover. Only those traders, whose annual turnover is up to Rs 60 lakh, can benefit from this scheme.

Officials of the Income Tax department said if anybody shows 8 per cent profit then the department would not verify business expenses.

It is also not mandatory for those whose annual turnover is up to Rs 60 lakh to keep the account books. “At the time of scrutiny IT officials cannot raise the net profit from 8 per cent and pass assessment order. The turnover mention in the papers should be genuine,” said an official.

Meanwhile, if any trader’s income is less that Rs 60 lakh and he shows the net profit less than 8 per cent while the income is more than the taxable limit he will be liable to get his account books audited under Section 44 AB.

Audit limit has also been increased from Rs 40 lakh to Rs 60 lakh. The scheme will prove beneficial for small traders who cannot manage the accounts.

Jatinder Khurana, president, Taxation Young Lawyers Association, said this scheme would prove to be beneficial for small traders. Generally, small traders find it difficult to maintain their account books due to lack of technical knowledge.

“But on the same side if any trader has VAT registration number then it automatically becomes mandatory for him to maintain his account books even if the turnover is less than Rs 60 lakh,” he added.



Fearing threat to life
Man locks up himself, daughter in room for 2 days
Rakesh Gupta

Jagraon, April 28
A resident of Ramgarh Bhuller village had locked himself up in a room along with his daughter for almost two days out of the fear of being killed by his brother’s in-laws. Both brothers are at loggerheads over a share in the property. One of the brothers lives abroad. Those who had locked themselves up in the room are Resham Singh and his daughter Ramandeep Kaur. His wife Rajwant Kaur,who was down with malaria, was admitted to a hospital at Raikot. She was instrumental in moving the High Court and ensuring their release.

Sources revealed that about four years ago, Nirmal Singh, the younger brother of Resham Singh, was about to get married at Lamme Jatpura village. But, suddenly the family demanded a car from the bride’s parents, which they refused. They, even, refused to get their daughter married with Nirmal Singh. They somehow got Nirmal Singh married to Amarjit Kaur of Bagradi village in Faridkot. Nirmal Singh left for Greece after living just for five days with her. After eight months of their marriage the father-in-law of Amarjit Kaur died and then begun the saga of her woos. She was turned out of the house by Resham Singh. Many a times Bagradi panchayat visited the Ramgarh Bhullar panchayat but Resham Singh refused to listen to them. Rather whenever the panchayats visited his house, he instead of meeting them used to lock himself in the house.

Meanwhile, parents of Amarjit Kaur asked Resham Singh to transfer the share in 16 acre agriculture land either in the name of Nirmal Singh or Amarjit Kaur and handover the possession to Amarjit Kaur till Nirmal Singh returns. Resham Singh refused to do this. Soon the demand becomes a bone of contention between the two families. On Saturday, the parents of Amarjit Kaur came to the village and reached Resham Singh’s house to permanently settle their daughter there. As usual, Resham Singh along with his daughter locked himself in the house and accused relatives of Amarjit Kaur of beating him and his daughter. Amarjit Kaur instead of returning settled in a cattle shed along with her mother and three-year-old son.

When the news of the incident spread, SHO and ASI of the Galib Kalan police post and other officials and village panchayat tried to persuade him to open the doors. Still, he refused to budge.

He, however, opened the door for journalists of the area when they approached him alone. Rajwant Kaur, wife of Resham Singh, had moved an application to the High Court in this regard. The drama ended at around 9 pm.

Resham Singh had approached the SSP Jagraon on the pretext that Amarjit Kaur’s family was threatening him.



Fire breaks out at 2 places
Goods worth Rs 50,000 gutted
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 28
Two incidents of fire were reported in the city today. Fire broke out in a house at Rajguru Nagar after a gas cylinder burst due to a short circuit in an air conditioner. However, major tragedy was averted, as alert family members were able to douse the fire along with fire fighters. In another incident, fire broke in a confectionary shop at Jawahar Nagar Camp here this afternoon.

Rajinder Goel, a resident of Rajguru Nagar, said the gas cylinder burst due to the short circuit. “We were able to save ourselves, but the fire had engulfed both floors of the house. Most of our furniture and other belongings were destroyed in the fire. It took at least an hour to control the fire”, added Goel. Two fire tenders were pressed into the service. “We were able to control it before the fire fighters reached here”, he said.

At Jawahar Nagar camp, fire broke in the confectionary shop in the afternoon. A fire tender was sent to douse the fire. “Goods worth Rs 50,000 were gutted in the fire but there was no life loss”, said one of the firemen.



Companies on hiring spree

Ludhiana, April 28
With the days of pink slips over due to the reversal of global meltdown, the youths are heaving a sigh of relief.

This feeling of theirs became evident during a job fair organised by the District Bureau of Employment Generation and Training where five city-based companies hired youths on different designations.

“I am glad that there are openings finally. Otherwise, I have been sitting at home for the past several months,” said Deepak Moudgill.

He said he worked in a retail sector, but was shown the door during recession. “Things are now looking up,” he said before appearing for the post of a marketing executive. — TNS



BSF jawan commits suicide
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, April 28
A BSF jawan posted in Assam committed suicide by shooting himself with his official gun in the wee hours today.

As per information received from his commandant, Kishan Pal (32) shot himself in his neck around 3 am. The reason of suicide could not be ascertained yet. He joined the BSF around eight years back.

He had visited home in December last to attend the marriage of his daughter. He is survived by his wife, a son and a daughter. His father Dharamveer, residing at Mohalla Mai Jeena here, said he called up home around 11 pm last night. He talked to each member of the family. He said as per information, there was no pressure on Kishan Pal. His body will reach home tomorrow.



Cops to step up night vigil
Tribune News Service

Khanna, April 28
Punjab DGP PS Gill met senior police officials of the district and directed them to intensify the late night patrolling on the GT Road to curb incidents of robbery, snatching and other crimes.

He also directed them to keep a tab on drug smugglers operating from their area. Efforts should be made to increase patrolling in the sensitive areas to curb heinous crime. Keep a tab on the culprits and arrest them as soon as they commit a crime, he added. Senior police officials like the SSP, SP, DSP and the DIG-level officials attended the meeting in the office of Khanna SSP Sukhminder Singh Mann.



RIMT students win 11 medals in Tech fest
Our Correspondent

Mandi Gobindgarh, April 28
Students participated in Tech fest organised by PTIS at GND Polytechnic College, Ludhiana, recently and bagged eight gold and three bronze medals in different competitions.

The project demonstrated by the college students won accolades from one and all. It is worth mentioning here that 23 teams representing different polytechnic colleges took part in the state-level competitions.

RIMT Group chairman Dr Hukam Chand Bansal, principal of Polytechnic College (morning) Prof Kesar Singh and principal (evening) Er RK Sofat felicitated the winners at a function organised to honour them today.

The college had won the over all runner up trophy in the state-level Athletics Meet of Polytechnic College and runners-up Ludorum Trophy and bagged the over all state-level cultural competition (girls) in the previous session. Anil Sood, Bhupesh Gupta, Sarabjeet Singh, Monika Gill and Babaljeet Kumar played a special role in their achievement.



Investiture ceremonies at city schools
Our Correspondent

Doraha, April 28
Sri Guru Harkrishan Public School, Doraha, Sacred Heart Convent School, Sahnewal, and Green Grove Public School, Mohanpur, organised their investiture ceremonies on the commencement of the new academic session.

At Sri Guru Harkrishan Public School, Doraha, Sukhpal Singh, chairman of Doraha Group of Institutes presided over. Jagdev Singh of Class X was elected as school captain, Arshjot Kaur of Class IX as vice-captain, Navjot Singh of Class X as captain of Ravi House, Harpreet Kaur of Class IX as vice-captain of Ravi House, Guramanpal Singh of Class X as captain of Beas House, Poonam Brar of Class IX as vice-captain of Beas House, Ravleen Kaur Mann of Class IX and Sukhjinder Singh of Class X as captains of Sutlej House and Noblepreet Kaur of Class IX as vice-captain of Sutlej House. Discipline in charge elected from Class IX include Deepak Kumar, Rubaldeep Kaur, Charanpreet Singh, Sourav Bhatia and Yudhveer Singh.

Discipline in charge elected from Class X were Kamalpreet Kaur, Gurvinder Kaur Atwal, Baldeep Singh, Parminder Kaur and Prakriti Sharma. The cultural programme included, shabad, poem and PowerPoint presentation on “Formation of Khalsa Panth”.

At Green Grove Public School, president JPS Jolly presided over and gave badges to the members of the council. Jaspreet Singh Negi of Class XII was elected head boy and Oshin Sethi of Class XII was re-elected head girl. Oath was administered by former head boy of the school Sandeep Singh.

The school head boy, head girl, along with house captains and vice-captains took oath to be honest, dedicated and unbiased in carrying out their duties. Captain Alisha of Nehru House, Navreen of Tagore House, Jaskiran of Tilak House and Aastha of Gandhi House spoke on the importance of leadership and teamwork. Neha Chum was selected as in charge of Gandhi House, Neha Bansal as in charge of Nehru House, Kavita as in charge of Tagore House and Neeraj Kalia as in charge of Tilak House. The president urged the students to be enterprising, optimistic and enthusiastic and prove to be befitting role models for juniors. He also blessed the students while honouring them with sashes and badges. Flags of the four houses were handed over to the respective captains. The school flag was handed over to the head boy and head girl.

Director Daniel Gill was the chief guest of the investiture ceremony at Sacred Heart Convent School, Sahnewal. School principal Sister Pavitra welcomed the new comers. Sarabpreet Singh was elected school head boy and Sandalpreet Kaur as head girl. Jatin, Karanbir Singh, Bhawanjit and Komal were elected captains of different houses.

The chief guest advised the students to take the responsibilities given to them and be role models for other students.



From Schools & Colleges
World of fairy tales at BCM

Ludhiana, April 28
The KG students of BCM, Dugri, created an enchanting "World of Fairy Tales" on the school premises.

Tales like “lion and the mouse”, “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs” were enacted by teachers and students.

Besides fairy tales, it also offered the wild wonder of “Panchtantra”. Through the skit “Greenovating Earth”, tiny tots were impressed upon the importance of clean and green environment. It was delightful to watch these young students and innovative teachers breathing life into the characters of the story.

The aim was to sensitise the audio-visual senses of the students and develop the practical relation between the fiction and the fact.

"Stories remain the most engrossing and lively way of instilling moral righteousness in students. Through this dramatic projection of stories, we were able to spark interest in students for stories and books," said Dr Vandana Shahi, school principal.

Prize distribution

Annual prize distribution for 2009 - 2010 was held here today to appreciate the meritorious students from classes VI - XII. The ceremony started with a prayer song, seeking the blessings of the God. Meritorious students were awarded certificates by Sister Christo and trophies were presented by Father John, director of the school.


SGPC president Avtar Singh Makkar honoured students of the department of music vocal of Government College for Women with a cash prize of Rs 11,000 for their brilliant presentation of shabad gayan at the Panjab University Youth Festival. The cash prize of Rs 11,000 was distributed by college principal Neelam Sharma to each student. Dr Nimita Sharma, head of music vocal department, was also present.


The Art of Living will organise a seminar on "Role and Result of Stress on Teenagers" for 1,000 students in Ludhiana on April 30 at Gurunanak Dev Bhawan.

More than 100 principals and educationists are expected to attend the seminar. The seminar will be conducted by Sumit Mahajan, a senior faculty at the Art of Living. He has addressed more 3.5 lakh youngsters nationwide on various issues like "Why be happy", "How to enhance efficiency among Youth", etc.

The seminar will give an insight on how stress plays a havoc in the life of youth and how through spiritual knowledge about once own mind and some breathing techniques it is very easy to live a stress-free life.

Top honours

Students of MSc (IT) (I semester) of Guru Nanak Girls' College, Model Town, have brought laurels to the institution by achieving 100 per cent result in the exams conducted by Panjab University.

Kiranpreet Kaur stood fifth in the district and first in the college with 81.8 per cent marks and Kirandeep got second position by securing 79.3 per cent marks. Kamalpreet Kaur stood third with 77.6 per cent marks. —TNS



At The Crossroads
Poetess of sense and sensibility

In modern times, something of the earlier age intermingles and it gives form to a new approach. A creative writer tiptoes on the dewdrops of the changing times. Kirti Kesar depicts in her poems the passion, conflict and contradictions in the life of a today’s man. For this, she employs soothing undertones, lyrical sensibilities and befitting terminology. The hidden emotional pattern gives her poems the form that has aesthetic appeal. The images she creates in her poems convey different shades of feelings. Most of the poems bear her “inimitable voice - print”.

Kirti feels her thoughts in a most delicate manner in most of her poems. There is an attitude of unconcern at one time because the mind is fully engrossed in the interior monologue, but at another time, the mind of the poet expands and craves for the person who is far away. There is some realisation that the other person may be grieving in the chamber of loneliness. At such moments, there is some thawing of the ice-bound regions of the mind. In her poem “Yaad Hai”, she says:

I remember that moment
when dewdrops of his looks
trickled down into the oyster of my eyes
and my eyelids encased them.
In no time
those drops turned into pearls.
I stringed them
into the thread of my breathings
the rosary adorned my innerself.

In the stillness of one's mind one recalls the time past. Memory haunts and the old images are animated in one's consciousness. This thing gives solace to one's innerself, but nostalgia leads to the valley of unfulfilled desires and unrealised dreams. In that pensive and meditative mood creativity urges one to record the sensibilities without any inhibition. In such a wistful mood, Kirti recalls the period of her life when the world was young in her youth. Now, she wants to maintain her identity by means of introspection and recapitulation. In her poem “Astitav Naye Mod Par” ('Existence at a new bend'), she says:

At what bend of the road
life has landed me?
Now I have started taking stock of things
what did I gain and what did I lose
during the trying period of my life?
Whatever I gained cannot be distributed
whatever I lost cannot be retrieved
Still I crave to croon for myself
to smile and to laugh
while recording the history of my wrinkles.

I am still involved in finding out whether life is a reality or a myth.

Kirti is inquisitive about the role of time in one's life. She knows that moments are like drops, which lose their identity in a rainfall. Moreover, human life passes through a series of episodes and occurrences, leaving behind memories, both melancholy and cheerful. In an artistic style, she views the panorama of human existence:

Moment by moment the day ended
hour by hour the night passed
drop by drop the blood dried up
by slow degrees the span of life was cut short.

There is a melancholy note in Kirti’s poetry. She is of the view that the values of life have undergone a sea change during the past years. There needs to be a link between the past and the present. The abrupt change of the way of life has created problems. Still there is hope for a balanced life and proper attitude to the disparity between the high and the low.

In a thoughtful mood, the poet resorts to interior monologue as in the poem “Thhoda Intizar”:

The roses will bloom again

the fragrant winds will blow just wait awhile

till the fury of the storm abates and history undergoes a change.

— NS Tasneem



Two die escaping from snatchers
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, April 28
The sarpanch of Lelan Megh Singh village, near here, and his daughter-in-law were killed in a accident today while trying to escape from snatchers.

Sarpanch Baksheesh Singh (63) and Charanjit Kaur (35) were going towards Nanaksar Kaleran on his scooter (PB25A-2128) to contribute at the ‘langar’ (common kitchen) at the gurdwara on the occasion of full moon.

Opposite Basant Resorts, near here, two youths on a black Pulsar motorcycle, without a registration number, attacked them to snatch her gold ornaments.

They tried to escape and in this attempt, the scooter went out of control and rammed into a truck (PB13C-8687), coming from the Jagraon side.

Both of them died on the spot. An eyewitness confirmed that the attack caused the death of the two victims.

The police took the matter lightly and allegedly to keep its crime book blank, booked the snatching accused for wrong-side driving and overspeeding.



1 held for killing rape suspect
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 28
Acting on a tipoff the police today arrested a man, later identified as Gurdial Singh, for killing Pankaj Kumar, 17, who was suspected of having raping the former’s minor niece, on March 26 last. Gurdial was apprehended along with his brother-in-law, Jarnail Singh.

Pankaj, who hails from Varanasi in UP and lives in the city’s Rahon Road area, was accused of raping Jarnail’s 14-year-old daughter and was undergoing trial in the case. He had come to the city last March to appear in the hearing of the case, following which Jarnail lured him to reach an out-of-court settlement and took him to Gurdial’s home in Dheri village.

Gurdial and Jarnail then forced Pankaj to drink an excessive amount of liquor, following which they killed him with sharp-edged weapons when he was in an inebriated state. The duo then reportedly dumped his body in the Satlej river. When Pankaj did not turn up at his home for a long time his family members filed a kidnapping case with the police.

Meanwhile, Jarnail was booked under section 302 of the IPC and Pankaj’s mobile phone was recovered from his home. Jarnail is still at large and the police is yet to locate Pankaj’s body.



Villagers force cops to arrest accused
Our Correspondent

Raikot, April 28
Villagers of Bassian gharaoed the police station here yesterday, accusing the police of not arresting the driver and the owner of a tractor-trolley that reportedly crushed two youths on Monday evening.

The 100-odd villagers threatened to block traffic on the Ludhiana-Bathinda highway near Hari Singh Nalwa chowk if the accused were not arrested immediately. They said they would also protest in front of the SSP’s office at Jagraon and not cremate the bodies till the accused were put behind bars.

The police, under pressure, dispatched two police parties for the arrest of the two accused. The police party led by SI Mohan Dass nabbed them.

They were identified as Baljit Singh and Balbit Singh of Nathowal. Their names were added to a case registered under Sections 304-A, 337, 338, 279 and 427 of the IPC. The accused pleaded that they were not guilty. A local political leader, pacifying the families of the deceased, advised them to arrive at a compromise.

Manpreet Singh (17) and Boota Singh (22) of Bassian village were returning home from Nathowal village on a scooter (PB33A-5138) on Monday when they were hit by a tractor-trolley.



IPL: Raveena sad for Shilpa
Manav Mander
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 28
“The IPL is full of controversies and I am pleased not to be a part of it. I lack sportsmanship, which is required to be a part of the team,” says actor Raveena Tandon.

She sees Lalit Modi as the showman of the IPL, who has taken it from the ground to the skies. She was here with Vandana Luthra to inaugurate a VLCC centre.

Raveena showed sympathy with Shilpa Shetty. She added that Shilpa had never lied about anything and it was sad to see her in the midst of the IPL controversy.

Instead of venturing into a business like buying a cricket team, Raveena loved to spend time with her family and children.

“My world revolves around my daughter Raksha, son Ranbir and two adopted daughters,” said Raveena.

Her forthcoming film ‘Laboratory’ was now ready for release. “The film is based in Kolkata and I am playing the role of a Sikh woman,” she said.

“I love to do challenging roles like ‘Daman’ and ‘Ghulam-e-Mustafa’, my last films before I took a break. I will do select films as family tops my priority list,” she quipped.



Badminton coach to hold camp
Our Sports Reporter

Ludhiana, April 28
Mangat Rai Sharma, an NIS-trained coach from Ludhiana, has been selected for the national badminton camp, scheduled to be held at Pune from May 5 to 20.

He will conduct a camp at the Balewadi Sports Complex in Pune, where campers under 16 years of age will be imparted training.

According to a communique from VK Verma, president of the Badminton Association of India, eight coaches will conduct camps at Pune, Jaipur and Lucknow.



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