L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Missing Worker
3 hurt in unrest at tyres factory
Charu Chhibber
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 30
Three security personnel were injured when labourers went on a rampage and vandalised the premises of a factory this morning following the disappearance of a worker three days ago.

The incident occurred at 7 am, when more than 600 industrial workers of Poddar Tyres, Jugiana, along with a few labour union leaders, reached the factory and hurled stones and bricks at the building, breaking doors, windowpanes and vandalising other property.

The police was informed to control the situation. The labourers dispersed after senior police officials, including ACP Pramod Ban, reached the spot. A riot control vehicle, too, was called and the police was deployed at the factory to avoid any untoward incident.

The injured included security guards Sant Ram, Kishan and Santosh.

The labourers were protesting against the disappearance of their co-worker Sushil Kumar on April 27 from the factory. They alleged that the management had sacked Sushil following a technical error made by him. "Senior manager Joginder Singh slapped him several times and ordered for his termination from the service. When Sushil demanded the settlement of his payment, he was asked to wait in the manager's office," said Sheikh Naeem, a co-worker, but soon after that Sushil went missing mysteriously, he added.

Labour leader Vinod Tiwari said a number of complaints to the management had failed to bear any fruit, following which the labourers decided to protest. "We fear that Sushil has been killed and we suspect Joginder’s hand in it," said Sheikh Samar-u-Din, another worker.

However, refuting the workers' allegations, senior manager of Poddar Tyres, said: "This is an in-house disciplinary matter." He added that on April 27, Sushil got involved in a brawl with labour in charge Ram Kishan on the factory premises. "As part of the disciplinary action against them, we handed them over to the security staff," said Joginder.

"Sushil and Ram were made to sit at the entrance, while the security manager was taking stock of the situation. Sushil asked the security guard on duty for permission to go outside and relieve himself. However, he fled the spot," said the senior manager.

Joginder added that an FIR was lodged last evening. "We don't know the workers got violent this morning. They were back to work soon after the police came," he said, adding that strict action would be initiated against those who caused loss of property to the enterprise.

A case under Sections 365 and 342 of the IPC was registered against Joginder, labour in charge Ram Kishan and security officer Kuldeep.


Fire victims pin hopes on compensation
Anshu Seth
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 30
With over a hundred shanties razed in the major fire that broke out last evening in Hussainpura village, hundreds of inconsolable factory workers and farm labourers with their families were left shelterless even as district administration officials tried to assess their losses.

A ‘jhuggi’ (shanty) caught fire when a young girl living in it was making tea and in a short span of 30 minutes the flames swallowed all the 110 adjoining dwellings.

Meanwhile, the losses have been provisionally estimated at about Rs 10 lakh. The Ludhiana deputy commissioner has forwarded a request to the Punjab chief minister to provide compensation for those affected from the CM’s relief fund.

The long list of items burnt or destroyed in the fire include foodgrains, groceries, clothes, beddings, kitchen gadgets, TV sets, radios, rickshaws, cycles and costume jewellery.

Coming to the rescue of the homeless daily wage earners, the district administration has made necessary arrangements for providing them food and shelter. A team of

n Benefactors help kids come to terms with tragedy P2

officials including the SDM (west) Prem Chand and tehsildar (west) Rajinder Oberoi personally supervised the relief efforts today.

A tent was erected in the area to provide temporary refuge for those whose shanties were destroyed. In addition, arrangements were made for providing cooked food and potable water to the displaced residents.

Many of the daily wage workers lost cash in the fire they had kept in their dwellings in the absence of bank accounts. Showing their burnt currency notes, Sat Narayan and his wife said, “Cash amounting to Rs 27,500, which we had got from the kitty for my daughter’s wedding scheduled on May 21, was reduced to ashes.”

Jai Mangal Paswan, owner of a grocery store that was completely razed in the fire, was worried about having lost his means of livelihood and expressed apprehension over receiving “compensation” from the government. “All the goods in my kiosk have been burnt to ashes and I don’t have any resources to start a store again,” he rued.

Meanwhile, Jagwinder Singh, former chairman of the block ‘samiti’ and the owner of the land on which the razed shanties stood, said: “Even 20 hours after the tragedy area MLA Darshan Singh Shivalik has not bothered to visit to the scene. Village residents are sore over such an apathetic attitude. The MLA has failed in performing his duty as the people’s representative”.

‘SBI to replace burnt notes’

Tehsildar Rajinder Oberoi stated that a few families lost cash that was destroyed in the fire, which he said had been taken into account. "We’ve tied up with SBI, which has agreed to replace their currency notes." Expecting to be compensated, a large number of residents came forward with polythene bags full of what looked like mostly ash, claiming it was the ‘cash burnt in the fire’.



Man refuses to part with money, killed
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 30
Refusal to part with money and valuables cost a man his life here last night. Ravinder Pandey (45) was killed with sharp-edged weapons by two motorcycle-borne youths at around 11.30 pm at a daba.

Ravinder was on his way home on 33-foot road along with his brother Ajay and friend Sarb-u-Din in an autorickshaw. While Ajay got down mid way, Sarb-u-Din and Ravinder got down at Daba. The duo was walking down the lane on way home, when two motorcycle-borne youths intercepted them.

The youths asked for money and valuables from the duo to which Ravinder objected. He hurriedly forced Sarb-u-Din to rush and get along few friends and neighbours for help.

While Sarb-u-Din rushed homewards to seek help, the assailants overpowered Ravinder. They thrashed him before killing him with a sharp-edged weapon and fleeing.

Sarb-u-Din informed the police that the trio had gone to Laskar in Uttrakhand to look for a job in a newly opened tyre manufacturing company. They had returned from Laskar last evening and had got down at the railway station at around 10.30 pm. From there they took an auto-rickshaw to go home.

Meanwhile, a case was registered at the Daba police station.



Census work begins today
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 30
The work on the first phase of the Census 2010 will begin here tomorrow. According to MC Commissioner AK Sinha, a total of 2,588 blocks have been made within the city limits for carrying out the work on population. Nearly 6,000 officials/workers have been put on duty to make the Census 2010 successful.

Sinha said 440 supervisors would be looking after the work of the first phase, which would continue till June 15. The enumerators would go from door to door to prepare the list of family members. The enumerators were being thoroughly trained to do the job and required material was also supplied to them.

The Commissioner has appealed to residents to provide all cooperation to the enumerators assigned for the job.

The city had been divided into four zones and four Commissioners and Census officers would be looking after their respective zones.

Besides 25 charge officers, two special charge officers had been appointed for the PAU and Railway Colony alone.



‘Anti-employees’ activities
PAU workers’ panel chief suspended
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 30
Members of the PAU Employees United Front at a meeting today unanimously decided to suspend Avtar Singh from the chairmanship of the PAU Employees United Front.

Lakhwinder Singh in a statement issued today stated that the executive of the front had warned Avtar against his anti-employees activities, but didn’t care two hoots to it.

The statement further read that the decision was taken by the adhoc committee consisting of four members, including Harbans Singh Mundi, Avinash K Sharma, Ranjod Singh Grewal and Asa Singh Pannu to look after the activities of front.

The written communication for the same was sent to Avtar.

Asa Singh Pannu, Ranjodh Singh Grewal, Harish Kumar, Ramesh Kumar, Tarsem Singh,Kirpal Singh, Pritam Singh, Sukhdev Singh Randhawa, Harbans Singh Mundi, Avinash Kumar Sharma, Lakhwinder Singh Sandhu, Charanjit Singh Sekhon, Sarabjit Singh, Jasbir Singh, Ashwani Nauriyal, Bikar Singh Kalsi, Parveen Kumar Banda, Yadwinder Singh, Mehal Singh Sidhu, Mandip Pal Singh Sekhon, Kashmir Singh and Gurmail Singh were present at the meeting.



From Schools & Colleges
Kids chill in pool

Students perform a folk dance at Green Land Convent School in Ludhiana. Tribune photo: Inderjeet Verma
Students perform a folk dance at Green Land Convent School in Ludhiana. Tribune photo: Inderjeet Verma

In order to beat the heat, primary section of Saraswati Modern School organised a pool party on the school campus.

Tiny tots in colourful swimming costumes made the atmosphere vibrant. They enjoyed a splash in the pool and played water games, followed by snacks and lunch. School president Kamla Jain also participated.

Healthy tiffin

A healthy tiffin competition for classes nursery to Ist was celebrated with pomp and show on the premises of Everest Public Senior Secondary School, Moti Nagar, here today.

Asha Sharma, coordinator, Indira Gandhi National Open University, special study centre, was the chief guest.

She said a sound mind lives in a sound body. To have a healthy body, it was important to provide nutritious food to the tiny tots. This is the responsibility of parents to ensure that their children took a balanced diet.

Pooja Sharma, programme officer, cultural activities, highlighted the aspects of balanced nourishment to growing children. Cakes and sweets were also distributed to the students.

Faculty development

ISTE, Guru Nanak Institute of Managemnt and Technology, arranged a faculty development programme on "art of mentoring" here today.

Dr (Col) HS Singh, college director, was the resource person. An interactive session provided the participants to know more about the aspects of mentoring.

MCom results

MCom first and third semester results were declared by Panjab University, Chandigarh, in which students of Guru Nanak Girls College, Model Town, have achieved 100 per cent pass percentage. Parminder Kaur Khangura of first semester secured 10th position in Ludhiana district. Anu Saini of MCom (IIIrd semester) brought laurels to the college by standing sixth in the district and first in college securing.

Placement week

Punjab College of Technical Education (PCTE) organised a placement week, which commenced on April 26 with Helix Technologies, Hyderabad.

The company visited the PCTE campus on offering a package of Rs 7.69 lakh per annum.

As many as 200 students from PCTE; Chitkara, Rajpura; GIM, Amritsar; GNIMT, Ludhiana; GNE, Ludhiana; LPU, Phagwara; RIMT, Mandi Gobindgarh; and Rayat and Bahara, Ropar participated and about 20 students were shortlisted.


Thermax India visited the campus of Guru Nanak Dev Engineering College. The company conducted a joint campus placement drive today to recruit BTech mechanical engineering students for the position of graduate engineer trainees.

More than 50 students from different colleges- ACET; NIT, Hamirpur; LLRIET, Moga; and GNDEC, Ludhiana, participated.

Labour Day

Bal Bharti Public School paid rich tributes to labourers of the country by putting a colourful programme on Labour Day here today.

A ramp walk was presented by tiny tots of Mont I and II dressed as workers from various professions highlighting the theme of the day.

Songs, bhajans, giddha, Punjabi folk dances were the main attractions. All employees of the school also participated in the celebrations.


A motivational lecture for joining the NCC was delivered by Lt Col Subhash Sehgal to the students of Bhartiya Vidya Mandir Senior Secondary School, Kitchlu Nagar, yesterday. Lt Col Sehgal encouraged the students to join NCC, which was an impressive and intelligent way of getting a harmoniously developed society by developing personalities. Generating multiple qualities among students like physical fitness, honesty, discipline, punctuality, hard work and moral courage was the aim of the NCC, Lt Col Sehgal said. He also encouraged the students to take a pledge to correct themselves by evaluating their inner selves.

Annual day

Kendriya Vidyalaya, Baddowal Cantt, celebrated its annual day and prize distribution function here on the school premises. Col HPS Ahlawat, Commandant, 17 FAD and chairman, VMC, was the chief guest and presided over the function.

Dr Ambika Kalra presented the annual report of the school, highlighting the achievements of the students in the fields of academics and co-curricular activities during the session 2009-2010.

Over 400 students from primary and secondary wings participated in the cultural programme, which was based on the theme “Preservation of natural resources and save mother earth”.

Highlights of the event were a welcome song, eco-friendly tableau, action dance, Rajasthani dance, bhangra and giddha.

Prizes were given away by Savita Ahlawat, the first lady of the station. The chief guest congratulated the winners and wished them luck. — TNS



Benefactors help kids come to terms with tragedy
Anshu Seth/Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 30
Without a roof over their heads, the forlorn eyes of children whose shanties were razed in yesterday’s devastating fire followed the movements of administrative officials and NGO activists making arrangements to provide food, clothing and shelter to the victims.

Trying to get some respite from the scorching sun, some children took refuge under the trees near their burnt ‘jhuggies’ (shanties) while the younger kids, oblivious to the enormous tragedy, tried to extract the remains of the belongings from the ashes.

However, for many kids, having missed out on school was a bigger loss than anything else as one of them, Shanti, remarked: "I want to study and become a teacher because I want to teach children who can't afford to pay for their studies."

It is commendable all schoolgoing children amongst the total 125 children living in these jhuggis are attending the nearby Satya Bharti School. Moreover, the owner of the land on which the razed shanties stood, Jagwinder Singh, is arranging for their uniforms. "We’ll request the school officials to give the children new sets of books as their old books have been destroyed in the fire”, he said.

However, the roomful of clothes gifted by Pastor Dharmendra Bajwa of The Blood of Jesus Ministry church was a silver lining for the homeless children as was evident from their unrestrained joy on seeing the dresses. The boys stood in a group trying to fit into the clothes of their respective sizes while the girls clung to their chosen dresses waiting for privacy to try them on.

speaking on behalf of the displaced residents, Bimal Paswan, the ‘pradhan’ (head) of the shanty dwellers, said, "We’re hoping against hope that the government provides us compensation as soon as possible, otherwise it’ll be tough for each one of us to start with everything from scratch."



Poor Amenities
Dugri residents move PSHRC
Kuldip Bhatia

Ludhiana, April 30
Peeved over the poor state of civic infrastructure, amenities and lack of maintenance, residents of Phase I and II of the Urban Estate, Dugri, a colony carved out by the Punjab Urban Planning and Development Authority (PUDA) in the mega city, have moved the Punjab State Human Rights Commission (PSHRC) to seek redressal of the hardship faced by them.

In their complaint, residents have charged PUDA authorities of step-motherly treatment to their colony, which they describe to be a “posh” one.

When contacted by The Tribune, a senior Municipal Corporation official who did not wish to be named claimed that quite a few development works had been executed in the colony. “Some other works have been allotted to contractors while a few estimates for road works and development of parks are awaiting clearance from the Finance and Contracts Committee. A status report on the basic amenities has already been submitted to the Deputy Commissioner,” he added.

But residents of the colony have a different story to tell. “Roadside encroachments are rampant. Both main and feeder roads are in a pathetic condition with deep potholes. Foot paths are either missing or are being used by shopkeepers and venders for commercial activities. Parks are not being developed and maintained. Rain water drainage is far too inadequate, and overall level of sanitation leaves much to be desired,” says the complaint filed by Malkiat Singh, a retired principal and a resident of Dugri.

Many other residents pointed out that even at the time of handing over the colony to the Municipal Corporation for maintenance, the basic infrastructure comprising roads, streets, sewerage and drainage systems were not up to the mark.

“Even the main road in Phase I, like all other roads and streets in Dugri, is in a state of utter neglect. Not only this, but in the wake of a hue and cry made by the affected residents as well as the pending complaint before the PSHRC, the authorities dumped stone ballast along several roads to befool the area residents,” alleged Kuldeep Singh, a resident of Phase II.

Dr Jasbir Singh said even after the residents took up the matter with the PSHRC, the PUDA as well as the Municipal Corporation authorities maintained their indifferent attitude and kept their eyes closed towards the poor plight of residents which is clear from the fact that the Deputy Commissioner failed to submit a status report to the rights panel on the last date of hearing i.e. on April 7, 2010, for which a notice was issued on December 1, 2009.

In its orders issued on January 22, 2010, Avinash Rai Khanna, a PSHRC member, took strong note of the failure of the authorities concerned to submit a report as sought by the commission.

Making it clear that the authorities cannot escape their responsibility (of providing basic amenities), Khanna observed, “The very purpose of taking cognisance of the complaint by the commission shall be defeated if the reports are not submitted on time. The inquiry officer is asked to appear personally before the commission along with the report on behalf of the Deputy Commissioner of Ludhiana on the next date of hearing. If, however, the inquiry officer fails to turn up on the adjourned date along with the report, the commission will be compelled to take legal recourse for report.”

Dr Jasbir Singh said he had sought details under the Right to Information Act of the estimates for road works, development of parks, removal of encroachments either carried out or proposed to be executed in future in Dugri colony from the civic body.



End indiscriminate challaning: Auto drivers
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, April 30
Auto-rickshaw drivers here are up in arms against the ‘indiscriminate’ challaning of vehicles by the transport department and the traffic police even as the Punjab and Haryana High Court is yet to dispose of a civil writ petition on the plying of public transport vehicles using diesel as fuel.

Members of the Clock Tower Auto-Rickshaw Association, during a meeting presided over by Madan Lal, today criticised the uncalled-for action against auto-rickshaw drivers, who provided the only mass transport system here.

A delegation of the drivers affected later met Police Commissioner Ishwar Singh to apprise him of the problems being faced by auto-rickshaw drivers.

They sought immediate withdrawal of the police campaign against them and handed over a copy of the interim orders issued by the Punjab and Haryana High Court to him.

In a press note, Madan Lal claimed that the Police Commissioner issued instructions to officials concerned of all four zones in the city not to cause avoidable harassment to auto-rickshaw drivers and permit vehicles that carried all necessary documents to be plied on city roads.



MC passes resolution to rename Jagraon

Jagraon, April 30
Supporters of various political parties in the municipal council united today to pass a resolution, recommending the change in name of Jagraon to Baba Nand Singh Nagar.

Councillors Ajit Singh Thukral, Neeta Sabharwal, Apar Singh and Madam Sevia were instrumental in putting this issue on the agenda.

All councillors supported it. Gurdeep Singh Bhaini, Jagraon MLA, voted in its favour. Gurcharan Singh Grewal, who initiated the campaign last fortnight, welcomed the move.

When contacted, Harish Rai Dhanda, Chief Parliamentary Secretary, said changing the name of a town was not easy. — OC



Kin of youth on death row get help

Ludhiana, April 30
National president of the Lok Bhalai Party and a former Union minister Balwant Singh Ramoowalia today came out to extend a helping hand to families of 17 youths facing death sentence in Sharjah, UAE.

Towards his continuing efforts for the financial and other assistance to the families of the victims, Ramoowalia provided 7 quintals of wheat to family members of Satnam Singh, a resident of Koohli Kalan and one of the convicts on the bhog ceremony of akhand path at Ber Kalan near Malaud, for the well being of the “condemned” boys. Raghbir Singh Saharanmajra, a SGPC member, and Sukhwant Singh Tillu announced a cash assistance of Rs 1,100 and Rs 2,100, respectively, for the family. — OC



11-yr-old cheque-bounce case
Businessman gets 1-yr jail
Our Legal Correspondent

Ludhiana, April 30
Businessman Krishan Chand, owner of M/s Krishan Kapoor & sons, Ghas Mandi, Ludhiana, was ordered to undergo imprisonment for a year in a cheque-bounce case here today.

The complaint against him was filed in April 1999.

Pronouncing the verdict, Judge of a special court, set up to dispose of cheque-bounce cases, held that the offence of accused was proved beyond doubt. The court also directed him to pay a fine of Rs 5,000.

The orders came on a complaint moved by Saraswati Rani, owner of M/s Ganesh Woolen Mills, Mochpura Bazar, Ludhiana, through its attorney.

The complainant had submitted before the court that the accused had purchased acrylic cloth from the complainant worth Rs 40,000 on January 9, 1999. Two days later, he issued a cheque of the same amount, with the assurance that the same would be encashed on its presentation to his banker.

But the cheque was dishonoured by the banker of the accused, with the remarks “insufficient funds”. Then a legal notice was sent to the accused, calling upon him to make the payment. But he failed to do so, added the complainant.

However, the accused pleaded innocence. He denied purchasing the acrylic yarn or issuing cheque to the complainant. But after appreciating the evidence on record, the court observed that the signatures on the cheque and singnatures put by the accused below his statement given in the court were the same.

The court also dismissed the contention raised by the defence lawyer that the complaint was not maintainable, as the same was not signed by the complainant but by her attorney.



Two held for snatching
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, April 30
The police nabbed two snatchers on a motorcycle (PB66-8027) on the lookout for their target from near the sugar mill here last evening.

They were identified as Gaurav Kumar, alias Yauki, and Harpreet Singh, alias Happy, residents of Prem Nagar at Moga.

The police recovered a purse, two Samsung mobile phones and a gold chain from their possession. A case under Sections 382 and 34 of the IPC was registered.



1 held with smack
Tribune News Service

Khanna, April 30
The local police today arrested a person from near Jhungian village near Machhiwara with 5-gram smack. The accused has been identified as Ranjeet, a resident of Machhiwara. A case in this connection has been registered against him. Further investigation is on.

Meanwhile, a local resident, identified as Raj Kumar, was arrested today for gambling at a public place near Samrala. An amount of Rs 1,050 was recovered from his possession. The accused was produced before the magistrate. A case in this connection has been registered against him at the Samrala police station. 



Two injured in accident
Tribune News Service

Khanna, April 30
Two persons received injuries after their bike collided with a car near Doraha.

A case has been registered against the car driver at the Payal Police Station.

According to the police, the injured Buta Singh and Narinder were on their way towards Khanna when their bike collided with a speeding car.

They were rushed to the Khanna Civil Hospital where their condition is stated to be normal. The police is investigating the matter.



Child abducted, recovered within 3 hrs
Our Correspondent

Phillaur, April 30
The local police yesterday busted a gang of child lifters with the arrest of two of its gang members. Those arrested have been identified as Madan Lal, alias Midha, and Sukhwinder Kumar, alias Sunny, both residents of Noormahal. A one-and-a-half-year old child was also recovered from them.

The DIG Jalandhar range said the child was abducted on Thursday at about 9.30 am and was recovered within three hours from Rurrka Kalan bus stand.

The DIG said Dil Ram, caretaker of Jathere Joshian in the outskirts of Bilga in the Phillaur subdivision, resides behind the religious place. The child was playing in the verandah. Madan Lal, the accused, came to the house and enquired about Parwati and Dil Ram. Seeing no one around the accused lifted the child and ran towards Bilga.

One of his accomplices Sukhwinder was waiting for him on a motorcycle. Parwati broke open the iron mesh of the bathroom and raised an alarm.

Both accused first went to Zandiala. From there, Madan Lal boarded a bus for Goraya. Dil Ram lodged a complaint with the police.

As soon as the bus stopped at Rurrka Kalan bus stand ASI got suspicious of a man alighting the bus along with the child.

The accused was arrested and confessed having committed the crime. 



Ankur steers Ludhiana to victory
Our Sports Reporter

Ludhiana, April 30
Skipper, Ankur Kakkar, steered the Ludhiana district to script a win over the formidable Mohali district in the first match of the Punjab State Inter-District Senior Cricket Championship for Katoch Shield, played at the PCA Stadium, Mohali, today.

Ludhiana emerged winners on the basis of first innings lead of 42 runs.

Ankur Kakkar's decision to bat first after winning the toss, appeared to be a miscalculated move as Ludhiana batsmen, soon found themselves struggling with five batsmen back into the pavillion in 10 overs with just 11 runs on the board.

Then, Ankur Kakkar and Amit Verma, not only steadied the innings but went on to anchor their team out of woods. The pair added 150 runs for the second wicket. Their essay culminated at 240 in 74.2 overs.

Ankur scored 82 runs while Amit chipped in with a useful contribution of 64 runs. Other notable scorers were Luv Abhlish (15), Deepak Bansal (14) and Tarun Passi (13 n.o).

For Mohali, Manpreet Singh Goni scalped four victims for 20 runs while Jaskarn Singh grabbed two wickets for 59 runs and Varun Verma captured two wickets after conceding 98 runs. In reply, Mohali district with at least Ranji players in its ranks, failed to cope up with some accurate and consistent bowling by Ludhiana as they could muster 198 runs in 53.2 overs in which Sunny Sohal's fine innings of 96 runs too went in vain.

Ankit Pursharthy made 30 runs, followed by Mayank Sidana and Navneet who scored 17 and 13 runs, respectively.

For Ludhiana, Ankur Kakkar and Love Abhlish shared the bowling spoilts, taking three wickets each for 37 and 33 runs, respectively. Deepak Bansal and Baltej Singh secured one wicket each.

Ludhiana, in their second innings were 90 for 4 when the match ended for the day.



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