L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Robbers snatch Rs 7 lakh from business agents
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 7
Unidentified robbers snatched Rs 7 lakh at gunpoint from two collection agents of Cash Management Services (CMS) when they were returning after collecting cash near the Kitchlu Nagar market here this afternoon.

The collection agents, Aman Kumar Sharma (25) and Varinder Singh (26), had collected the cash from Reliance and other showrooms in Rishi Nagar and were taking it to their Feroze Gandhi market based office at around 2 p.m.

Two motorcycle-borne robbers, with muffled faces, started chasing them before finally intercepting them on the busy main road in F block of Kitchlu Nagar. Their motorcycle did not have registration number. The youths asked for their bag, but the agents offered them resistance.

They struggled for 10 minutes on the road for the bag. Finally, one of the youths took out his pistol and aimed it at the agents.

All this happened when a number of people were commuting on the road. Nobody, however, stopped to help them although the duo called for help. Finally, the collection agents had to part with their bag as they were overpowered by the snatchers. The youths went towards Rishi Nagar.

Following the incident, police rushed to the spot and started investigating the matter. Security was beefed up in the area and barricading was done at vital traffic intersections. But this did not help the police to catch the snatchers.

Jasdev Singh Sidhu, ADCP-III, said the police was verifying facts. Investigations were on and a case of snatching under Section 382 of the IPC had been registered.

Third incident in a year

Today's robbery was the third involving collection agents of the CMS in the last one year. On July 17 last year, an employee of the CMS, Rajesh Kumar was shot dead on Sham Singh Road when he refused to hand over his bag carrying Rs 3 lakh to robbers. On April 6 last year, robbers snatched Rs 5 lakh from an agent, Vijay Kumar, by sprinkling chilly powder in his eyes on Mall Road.

Limit on carrying cash

According to the CMS companies clause, no employee can carry more than Rs 3 lakh and in case they are carrying cash more than the specified limit, a security van with a security guard will travel along with the employees. If the guidelines are not followed, chances are the CMS security service will not get the insurance claim for violating the rules.

Robberies so far this year

January 17: Iron trader robbed of Rs 3 lakh at Lohara bridge.

February 8: Businessman robbed of Rs 4.7 lakh and car in Model Town.

February 9: Businessman robbed of Rs 3 lakh from Jagraon bridge.

April 19: Armed men rob Rs 5.8 lakh from a factory in Jugiana village.

May 6: Armed youths rob an industrialist of his laptop, purse and luxury watch after a hot chase in Focal Point.

May 13: Armed robbers snatch Rs 29 lakh from Seehra village sarpanch from Bajra Road.

May 14: Rs 60,000 robbed from liquor vend at Ishwar Nagar bridge, injure two.

May 21: Robbers flee with SUV at gunpoint in Sarabha Nagar.

May 28: Rs 30 lakh robbed from the office of Western Union Money Transfer, Pakhowal road.


Stray dog sterilisation runs into opposition
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 7
While residents have been frequently complaining over the stray dog menace in the city, putting pressure on civic officials to act fast, there are others who are opposing sterlisation of stray dogs -one such measure taken by the municipal corporation to address the problem. Those against the drive recently got a large number of these stray dogs released by workers of Doggie Lane - the company that has been contracted to sterilize the dogs, claiming the latter as their pets.

Himmat Singh Grewal of Doggie Lane said the firm’s workers and veterinarians were facing such kind of problems particularly in the city’s slum areas.

“In ward number 49, near Jawaddi, the slumdwellers got the dogs released and threatened our workers not to touch them again as the dogs were their pets. Similarly, in Haibowal people created the same problem yesterday but were pacified after some veterinarians intervened. We’re not inflicting any cruelty on the animals. People need to cooperate with us if the population of stray dogs has to be checked", said Grewal.

During the recent past city residents have lodged several complaints with the civic body after stray dogs bit passers-by in many localities. As these dogs usually move around in groups of six or more, residents have now begun feeling scared.

The stray dogs can be spotted outside government offices and commercial establishments, in pubic parks and even on the Punjab Agricultural University campus, which is popular for morning walks. The stray animals pose a constant threat to visitors at the mini secretariat and court complex too.

A security guard of one of the top official of district administration, on condition of anonymity disclosed that recently a female dog had given birth to pups and the "family" roamed freely at the premises throughout the day.

Senior deputy mayor Parveen Kumar Bansal said city residents had to cooperate with the civic body to get rid from the menace.

"The workers alone cannot ensure the success of the sterilisation drive. In the past few months many cases of dog bites have been reported. In one incident, stray dogs had half-eaten an abandoned child. Their population needs to be controlled. According to one estimate there are about 30,000 stray dogs in city", said Bansal.

70 stray dogs sterilised

Doggie Lane, the firm contracted by the municipal corporation to sterilise stray dogs, claims to have sterilised about 70 dogs in the city. About 15 of them have already been released after postoperative care. On an average ten stray dogs taken for sterilisation every day, the company said.



PMET toppers share their success mantra
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Prekshi Bansal
Prekshi Bansal

Ludhiana, June 7
Adhiraj Satija of Sacred Heart Convent School, who topped the city by securing 11th rank in the Punjab Medical Entrance Test conducted by Baba Farid University, went to see a movie with his friends to celebrate success.

A few days ago Abhiraj hogged limelight after he secured CBSE 597 PMT examination.

Son of a businessman Pradeep Satija and Vimmi Satija, a teacher in Sacred Heart Convent School, wants to become a successful doctor.

Adhiraj loves to read books, believes in hard work and has a positive attitude towards life.

"Nothing is impossible, one needs to be positive and focused," said Adhiraj.

While talking to The Tribune he said: "We feel on cloud nine and our son always wanted to be a doctor and he has achieved his goal."

Prekshi Bansal, who stood second in the city in CBSE class 12 examination by scoring 95.6 per cent marks, yet again proved her metal and secured 14th rank in the PMET examination.

Daughter of a bank employee, Prekshi, a pass out of Alpine International School aspires to study in top medical school of the state.

Father Rakesh Bansal, deputy manager in State Bank of India, and mother Robina Bansal, senior assistant, in the same bank at PAU said: "We will prefer Rajindra College in Patiala or some other good college in Amritsar. We are also giving a thought to get admission in DMC."

Tennis ace Tenupriya stood first under sports quota, while tennis player Tenupriya Sood of BCM Arya Model School, Shastri Nagar, scripted success story by securing first rank under sports quota.

This national-level tennis player got 69th rank in the PMET examination.

Talking to The Tribune Tenupriya said: "I had to quit sports for some time so as to prepare for exams."

Daughter of Kamal Sood, an employee with a pharmaceutical company Tanupriya is hoping to get a placement in a reputed medical school of the state.



BCom results: GCW takes top 3
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 7
The trio- Kriti, Namita and Mandeep stole the show for Government College for Women and bagged the top three positions in the city in BCom first year examination conducted by Panjab University, Chandigarh.

While Kriti Jain secured 90 per cent by scoring 495 out of 550 marks followed by Namita Goyal, who secured 488 out of 550 and Mandeep stood third by scoring 480 out of 550 marks. GCW authorities were in celebration mood soon after the declaration of BCom results here this afternoon. Topper Kriti was invited to school and was felicitated by school principal Neelam Bharadwaj and commerce department.

"We were expecting good result, but capturing top three positions is like icing on the cake. The students have yet again made us proud," said the elated principal.

Kriti's mother was overwhelmed and said: "I am proud of my daughter she has always done exceptionally well and this time, too, she has got first rank."

Akhilesh, Gaurav and Sahil Manro of SCD Government College stood first, second and third in the college by securing 83.09, 79.45 and 78 per cent marks.

Nitika Bansal, Sunaina Kalsi and Amrit Kaur of Bcom (I) brought laurels to the college by getting 1st, 2nd and 3rd position in the college securing 79.63 per cent, 78.36 per cent and 78 per cent, respectively.

Nitika Bansal, Sunaina Kalsi and Amrit Kaur of Guru Nanak Girls College, Model Town stood first, second and third in the college. Sapna of SDP College for Women got first position in the college securing 80 per cent marks in BCom, while Seema got second position with 79.27 per cent marks.

For Arya College, Shaify Arora stood first with 83.1 per cent marks, while Shradha Sharma and Rahul Chitkara stood second and third with 80.54 and 80 per cent.

Neha Kusum and Ashima, students of Master Tara Singh College stood first second and third in the college by scoring 78, 76 and 75 per cent marks.



Joined by name, toppers share common goal
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 7
Aman Jot Singh and Aman Deep Singh, who have secured the first and second position, respectively, in Panjab University's second-year B Com examinations, not only share a common first name but also are the best of buddies who have forged a unique bond that is hard to come by these days.

Having studied together since class 2, the duo - popularly known as ‘Lambu aur Tingu’ in college - are dreaming to make it big in the field of accountancy. While Aman Jot, the tall guy, secured 990 out of 1,150 marks in the exams his close pal, Aman Deep, was only inches behind and scored 987 out of 1,150.

"Since childhood we’ve made our decisions together. After completing our studies at Guru Nanak International School both of us took admission in BCM Arya Model School, Shastri Nagar. After completing class 12 we secured admission in Aurobindo College of Commerce & Management," said Aman Jot.

Now both boys have one goal - to become a chartered accountant. They said in unison they would then start an accountancy firm together. Though both believe in healthy competition they have never let grades come in between their friendship.

"Though, our stream has lot to do with numeric, but we have never let the number enter in our friendship. No matter if I get more marks or Aman Deep, both of us celebrate our success together," said Aman Jot, with a beaming smile on his face. Interestingly, the youths come from similar family backgrounds. The parents of both toppers are employees of state-run organisations.

While Aman Jot's father, Parminderpal Singh, is a senior stenotypist at Punjab Agricultural University, his mother, Arvinder Kaur, is working as a clerk at Punjab National Bank. Aman Deep's father, Madan Mohan Singh, is a Punjab police subinspector and his mother, Joginder Kaur, is also a bank employee.

Aurobindo College shines

Second-year BCom students of Aurobindo College of Commerce & Management brought laurels to the institution with 117 out of the 135 students who appeared in the exams securing first division



Nod to 8.8-acre LIT housing project
Kuldip Bhatia

Ludhiana, June 7
With the Punjab government according its formal nod to the proposed change of land use, decks have been cleared for the Ludhiana Improvement Trust (LIT) to go ahead with its project for construction of multi-storeyed low-cost residential flats for economically weaker sections in 8.8 acres at Shaheed Karnail Singh Nagar.

The LIT, at its meeting held on March 25, 2010, had adopted a resolution for the construction of around 1000 EWS and LIG multi-storeyed flats as per the guidelines of the Union Ministry for Housing and Urban Development for Urban Local Bodies aimed at giving a thrust to affordable housing for the urban poor.

LIT chairman Ashok Juneja said here today that the housing project named "Atal Apartments" after former Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee, will have multi-storeyed residential flats in an area of 7.31 acres, while pockets of 0.71 acres and 0.78 acres would be earmarked for commercial purpose and locally displaced persons, respectively.

Earlier, the piece of land was to be utilised for carving out residential plots, but in the wake of government guidelines for providing low-cost houses to economically weaker sections in urban areas, the permission for the change of land use was sought from the state government through a resolution. The land in question was also under unlawful occupation of a politically connected person for some time and a court verdict in favour of the LIT was delivered and possession restored to the Trust last year.

"We have moved the case for seeking the technical permission for the housing project from the Chief Town Planner (CTP), Punjab, while also taking up the matter with the Local Government department to finalise the common design for low-cost houses for the urban poor through a competition as was decided at a meeting of the chairmen of all improvement trusts in the state at a meeting convened by the Principal Secretary to Government of Punjab, Department of Local Government a few months back," Juneja informed.


l Project for tentative number of 1000 low-cost residential flats for economically weaker sections approved.

l Change of land use allowed by state government.

l Technical permission from Chief Town Planner (CTP) awaited.

l Design for proposed low-cost flats to be finalised through an open competition.

Flats for weaker sections

Multi-storeyed, low-cost residential flats for economically weaker sections will be constucted in 8.8 acres at Shaheed Karnail Singh Nagar in Ludhiana



Fight depression the nature’s way
Anshu Seth
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 7
If you are depressed, don't look towards anti-depressant medicines. Your kitchen has the best solution to your lowered "serotonin" (the chemical produced in the brain) that causes depression.

Psychiatrists are advising people suffering from depression to increase intake of bananas, eggs, fish, flax seeds, soya foods, peanuts, almonds, walnuts and dark chocolates, the best source of tryptophan amino acid that helps in increasing the release of serotonim, thereby giving a lift to your spirits.

International studies have established that "natural sunlight" is another brain stimulant, which is best to keep depression at bay. Experts have confirmed that people confined to indoor activities with no exposure to sun are at a higher risk of developing depression.

Not to miss the role of "regular exercise" that helps the brain to release serotonin and keep a person happy.

Changing lifestyles coupled with genetic problem of "depression", have made life difficult for adolescents, adults and older generation, who are unable to combat with their psychiatric disorder and become chronic patients despite getting best clinical care.

Observes Dr Rajiv Gupta, a city psychiatrist, "A majority of the people coming to me with depression have a history of long working without break at regular intervals. Cops, journalists, IT professionals and over-ambitious people who work at a stretch and sleep for less number of hours are more prone to depression," Dr Gupta went on to add.

The news of healing potential of the anti-depressant foods and the fact that these food products treat depression better than anti-depressant drugs may be new to the general public and conventional medical doctors, but it is known to the people working in field of holistic nutrition and natural health.

Referring to the anti-depressant foods mentioned in the ayurveda, the oldest system of medicine, Dr Ravinder Vatsyayan stated that brahmi, ashvagadha, jatamansi, asparagus, cardamom, and rose petals are recommended for people with a history of depression, which is called "unmaada roga" in ayurveda. "Eating light food, avoiding alcohol/caffeine and incorporating sprouts, butter milk, cow milk, yoga and pranayam in the daily routine followed by positive thinking is part of remedial measure against the state of melancholy," Dr Vatsyayan went on to add.

Simple Truths

n Water is one of the best natural anti-depressants, as dehydration causes fatigue, which in turn, causes the body to not feel so great. Drink at least one ounce of water per pound of body weight daily to help yourself feel less depressed.

n Spinach is a very good source of folic acid, which is very important for maintaining proper physical and mental health. Lack of folic acid causes the body not to produce enough serotonin.

n Oranges, red pepper and other citrus fruits are packed with vitamin C, which is needed by the body to produce dopamine. It also keeps red blood cell count high.

n Wheat Bread acts as a natural anti-depressant. It's loaded with complex carbohydrates, which help in producing healthy amounts of serotonin.



No tests on seized sugar; complaint filed with PSHRC
Anshu Seth
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 7
Irked by the nonchalance of the food, civil supplies & consumer affairs department over laboratory testing of the “expired” sugar that it had confiscated in September last year, the All India Congress Committee’s Rajiv Gandhi Panchayat Raj Sangathan has filed a complaint on this matter with the Punjab State Human Rights Commission (PSHRC).

In a letter written to the commission, Gursimran Singh Mand, the body's general secretary, stated the department was “guilty of endangering the lives of people” by re-auctioning the sugar which he asserted was not safe for human consumption.

The department had seized 97,500 quintals of the "expired" sugar hoarded by one Khubi Ram Johari Mal, 8,516 quintals from a godown belonging to Yashika International and 9,780 quintals from a godown owned by Chandi Mal Roshan Das in Seehra.

The hoarders had specially rented godowns in the city to stock the sugar. Following raids the city police filed a case against them under the Essential Commodities Act.

Owing to its "bad condition" of the confiscated sugar, which has been stored in the department’s godowns, traders refused place bids at the two auctions organized by the department.

The auction scheduled on February 26 was cancelled as the food department failed to "convince" traders in Punjab about the sugar being safe for human consumption. Similarly, deputy commissioner Rahul Tewari had to call off the re-auction slated for June 6 following demands by city residents to get the sugar tested in the health department’s laboratories.

The food department had kept Rs 2,700 as the reserved price but no trader showed up for the auction fearing action by the health & family welfare department under the Prevention of Food Adulteration Act.



Drive against child labour fizzles out
Manav Mander
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 7
The district administration’s campaign to put an end to child labour in the city appears to have gone up in smoke. Large numbers of kids were seen today working at the roadside ‘dhabas’ (makeshift eating joints), mechanics’ shops, tea vendors and in industrial units as well.

On June 4 chief secretary SS Aggarwal announced a campaign against child labour, with the following week to be observed as ‘child labour elimination week’.

Yogesh, selling boiled eggs outside the city’s train station, said since he could not afford to go to school he had put up a makeshift ‘rehri’ (cart) outside the station. "I along with my elder brother come here at about 6 pm and work late into night. In the morning my brother works in a factory while I help my mother in doing household chores," he said.

A tea vendor near the Clock Tower said after attending school his son came to help him in making and serving tea to nearby shops. "He’s studying and will build his own future, but at present he has to lend me a helping hand. In the daytime my wife helps me at my tea stall while in the afternoon my son takes over from her. We poor people have no other option but to have our family members help us in our work”, he added.

“There can be no end to child labour unless the government takes strict action against those employing kids. The administration should ensure children attend school and receive their necessary education. These kids are the country’s future”, said Shamsher Singh, a senior citizen.

Though Aggarwal had instructed administration officials to conduct checks at restaurants, ‘dhabas’, factories and homes where child labour was prevalent, today small kids were seen working at various places. "Those found guilty of hiring children would be punished with three months’ imprisonment and besides a fine of Rs 20,000”, he had stated on June 4.



Mobile phone towers just keep coming up
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 7
The installation of mobile towers by mobile phone companies in densely populated areas goes on unabated. Residents and the medical fraternity maintain that since towers emit electromagnetic radiation, those should be installed as per specifications.

The enforcement authorities not only fail to take action against violators, but seem to be providing permission to companies without getting their credentials.

Complaints keep on pouring in from city residents about the haphazard manner in which mobile service providers are putting up their towers.

As there are no strict guidelines by the government on location of communication towers, those are being installed unabated near schools and residential areas.

With the massive proliferation of mobile phone users in the city, companies are conveniently putting up transmitters even on unsafe or dilapidated buildings, posing danger to lives of millions.

The towers have been installed throughout the city.

Mobile phone companies pay monthly rent (between Rs 15,000 and Rs 50,000, or even more, depending on the company) to the owner of the building for installing the tower and the municipal corporation charges house tax on the owner for commercial use of property.


Medically speaking, mobile towers pose a threat to everyone. Those more prone to radiation are children, adolescents and pregnant women. The human brain is the most vulnerable portion, risking neurological effects, increase in ODC (ornithine decarboxylase) activity, effects on enzymes and decrease in brain metabolism. The radiation adversely affects implanted pacemakers, which may stop delivering pulse in a regular way or even generate some external-controlling pulse.


Municipal Corporation Commissioner AK Sinha says there are no clearcut guidelines that towers cannot be put up in residential areas. The MC provides NOCs to companies after taking into account proper specifications, but if residents complain, they take action accordingly, he adds.



Long queues outside petrol stations
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 7
In wake of reports of a meeting regarding hike in petrol prices in New Delhi, city residents made a beeline for petrol filling stations to get their tanks filled here today.

Several petrol pumps even went dry as the demand suddenly went up this morning.

There were reports that a decision to lift price control on petrol and diesel may finally be announced by tonight and petrol prices were likely to go up by Rs 3 per litre and diesel by around Rs 2.50 per litre.

Following the reports, resident started heading towards petrol pumps to save some money. A few of them even came with cans to store the petrol and diesel. "We have a generator at home, so I thought it’s wise to buy diesel today instead to paying extra money tomorrow," said Karamjit Dhillon, a resident.

A person on duty at Laxmi Petrol Station at Ferozepur road said they had been witnessing a huge rush since morning. "Some people are even coming with cans to hoard diesel and petrol. Today they will save a few bucks, but if the price increase they will have no escape and will have to pay extra money after every litre," he said.

Guneeta, a housewife, said after every few months the prices of petrol, diesel and cooking gas are increasing. "Hike of Rs 30-50 per cylinder is high. We have no relief as the prices of all the essential commodities are sky rocketing," she added.



Dirty drain has 40 families harassed
Own over 200 acre of agriculture land
Rakesh Gupta

Jagraon, June 7
Around 40 families of Gureh, Talwandi Kalan, and Mor Karima villages have been suffering huge losses as the drain passing through their fields has not been cleaned for the past over four years.

These families own around 200 acre of agriculture land on both sides of the Dakha 1 drain, as per the records of the irrigation department.

“Because of inadequate water supply for irrigation purposes, crop productivity has gone down considerably,” rued Mehar Singh of the village.

He said he had already given a representation to the Deputy Commissioner in this regard but no action had been taken by anyone from the department concerned.

Admitting that the drain had not been cleaned up for a long time, the XEN of the irrigation department blamed it on the paucity of funds faced by the department for the situation.

He said he had asked the Deputy Commissioner to release some grant for cleaning up the drain under the NAREGA scheme and an assessment regarding it had also been sent to the DC’s office.

He said nothing could be done till the funds were released for the purpose.

He, however, assured of initiating the work as soon as the funds were released so that farmers could get adequate water for irrigating their paddy crops this year.

Dakha 1 drain originates from Barewal village in Ludhiana and after passing through a dozen of villages, meets a dead end at Gureh village, near Chowkiman village.



Plantation drive to increase green cover
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, June 7
The District Youth Congress - Urban (DYC) - will undertake a comprehensive plantation drive in the city under which the party activists will plant saplings at the ward and block level to increase green cover and check the environmental pollution, which has assumed alarming proportions.

Addressing a party meeting at the Congress Bhawan, here, today, DYC president Dimple Rana said after the plantation drive was over, the party functionaries would be entrusted with the task of tending to plants till maturity. He regretted that in the wake of infrastructure development and widening of national and state highways, thousands of trees were being cut down but afforestation appeared to be among the last priorities of the administration.

The party workers, he added, had been asked to motivate more and more people for the plantation campaign and the proposed awareness drive on water conservation.



Powercom staff hold rallies
Demand removal of anomalies in recommended pay scales
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, June 7
In response to a call given by the joint forum of the Punjab State Electricity Board (now Powercom), employees of City Central, Grid Maintenance (Urban), CMC and Sunder Nagar divisions under the City East circle of Powercom today held protest rallies to press for implementation of their pending demands.

In an ultimatum to the management, the protesting employees vowed to intensify the agitation if commitment made on April 16, 2010, was not bought into effect without any further delay.

Speakers at the protest rallies, including Ramesh Kumar, Ajay Kumar, Jagat Sharma, Jagir Singh, Pawan Kumar, Sukhjiwan Kumar, Mewa Singh, Balwinder Sharma, Joginder Singh, Bhag Chand, Rachpal Singh and Sohan Singh said there was widespread resentment over the dilly-dallying attitude of the government towards genuine demands of the Powercom staff, which had already been accepted in principle.

Emphasising the need for immediate removal of anomalies in the recommended pay scales, the trade union leaders demanded that the rate of increment be fixed at 3.5 per cent, options be taken for recruitment on priority basis for wards of serving employees and two increments on promotion from RTM to ALM be restored forthwith.



Delayed Payment
Knitwear club seek help for petitioners

Ludhiana, June 7
Knitwear club has written a letter to the director of Industries and Commerce and highlighted the difficulties being faced by them.

President Vinod K Thapar, in the letter stated that the meetings of "Delayed Payment Council" in regard of "MSME Development Act 2006" are being held in Chandigarh, whereas this information is much needed in Ludhiana and the intimation of such meetings should be provided in advance with full details of date, time and venue through registered post and e-mails to all applicants.

"Need of online performa (to file petition) is requested, so that applicant can fill and submit the form online, thus making the process time saving and convenient for the Industry," said Thapar.

As the decision time for delayed payment petitioners is decided for 90 days, it is pleaded to be time-bound and decision should be final in case of absence of second party so as to save the time of petitioner.



Burglaries on the rise
As police dept reels under staff shortage
Mahesh Sharma

Mandi Ahmedgarh, June 7
A deficit in the sanctioned strength, coupled with frequent VIP and other security related duties continue to burden the local police, which seems to be finding it difficult to check burglaries.

Lack of streetlights in localities situated on outskirts of the town and administrative complications due to proximity to adjoining police districts have further compounded the problem.

Admitting shortage in strength, Amargarh DSP Gurpreet Singh Sikand said he had requisitioned more cops for the segment. He has directed beat officers to increase vigil in burglary prone areas.

With just 2 NGOs, 15 other rank cops and 10 odd Punjab Home Guard volunteers at its disposal, the Ahmedgarh SHO appears to be struggling to maintain law and order situation in the town and surrounding localities.

Coming up colonies situated on Jagera Road, Dhulkot Road, Jandali Road and Pohir Road have become target of burglars. What to talk of protecting valuables and household goods, the burglars have taken away doors and fixtures from buildings, which had been lying unattended in the past.

Inadequate streetlight facility in these localities facilitates illegal activities of anti-social elements, including snatchers and burglars.

Having a population of about 40,000, the town is spread in 15 wards. Village Chhanna is also included in the town for security purposes. Though the administration had recently upgraded the local police chowki to a police station, no organizational change was noticed. Rather the police has been asked to watch areas which were earlier controlled by the Sadar Police.

The residents hoped that the city would be getting more NGOs after recent promotion. But instead of enhancing security arrangements, the administration has been leaving residents on mercy of God, whenever some VIP visited Sangrur district. Even on festivals and special occasions, cops from the local police station are deputed in other towns and localities.

Investigations revealed that one fourth of the force was required for non-patrolling purposes. At least four sentries, two naib-courts and one ‘dak’ carrier were unavailable for security duty daily.

The situation becomes precarious during demonstration, processions, meetings, cultural events and examination days.

Residents led by councillors Ravinder Puri and Bimal Sharma have urged the authorities to depute more personnel at the police station.



Taxation body discusses fine issue

Ludhiana, June 7
The meeting of the Taxation Bar Association was held to discuss the problem of fine imposed by the Income Tax Department. Hari Om Arora, president of the association, said IT officials should not adopt strict attitude during the assessment of IT returns.

Jatinder Khurana, press secretary, said heavy fine was imposed by the officials on tax payees for concealing income. — TNS



‘Ajaib Chitarkar has motivated new writers’
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 7
Punjabi Ghazal Manch, Phillaur, organised a function to acknowledge the good work done by Punjabi and Urdu poet Ajaib Chitarkar. The newly published collection of his latest ghazals 'Tin Taal' was released by the culture connoisseur Jagdev Singh Jassowal.

Jassowal said Punjabi ghazals make a mark only if it had the fragrance of Punjabiat. He said that Chitarkar was the son of the soil, who had motivated new writers.

The book release function was held in Dashmesh Nagar at the residence of Ajaib Chitarkar. Speaking on the occasion, Gurbhajan Gill, president, Punjabi Sahit Akademy, said that the poetry of Chitarkar was like kaleidoscope of happiness, joy, sorrow, grief, courage, romance, dreams and attainments. He said that 'Tin Taal' was a document based on realistic and holistic dimensions of life.

Noted Punjabi writer Sardar Panchhi said Chitarkar was a high stature writer, who should get due credit for his works from the state also.

Harbhajan Dharna, Trailochan Lochi, Jagir Singh Preet, Gurcharan Kaur Kochhar, Manjinder Dhanoa, Daljit Singh Arora, Amarjit Sherpuri, Kulwant Singh Lehari and family members of Chitarkar, including his sons Nagar Singh, Sukhpal Singh and Harpal Singh were also present on the occasion.



Parking blues continue!
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 7
New buildings, shopping malls and commercial establishments have mushroomed in all parts of the city in recent times. Majority of the building owners become "defaulters" as the space meant for parking at the basements of these buildings are conveniently being used for commercial purposes right under the nose of the Ludhiana Municipal Corporation (LMC) but latter seems to have adopted an ignorant approach.

The buildings have come up at prominent places, including National Road, College Road, Old Rani Jhansi road, Ferozpur Road, Ghumar Mandi, Ferozgandhi market etc. In the absence of proper parking place provided by building owners, the visitors park their vehicles on the roads, causing traffic congestion and jams throughout the day.

As if it was not enough, the owners of shopping complexes and even that of many hospitals have deployed their own security guards outside their premises, who charge fees from visitors/patients for parking their vehicles on public roads. "They charge anything between Rs 10-Rs 30 from the commuters and even issue receipts. Due to the callous attitude adopted by the authorities concerned, such practices are going unabated. I was charged Rs 20 for parking my car outside a shopping mall (public lane) on Ferozpur road by private security guards", said Pankaj Sharma, a resident.

Sarabjit Singh Kaka, a Municipal Councillor, had recently brought the matter to the notice of theDistrict Grievances Committee. He said that majority of buildings on the Mall Road and AC market in Bhadaur House, particularly were using the parking lots for commercial purposes. "Many shopping malls usually put ‘No-Parking Available’ or ‘Full Parking’ (basements) boards outside the shopping malls during peak hours and ask shoppers to park the vehicles along road-side. They all are violators. To ease-out traffic problem in the city, action needs to be taken against them", stressed Kaka.

MC Additional Commissioner Kamalpreet Brar said the violators had been issued notices. "They have been given time. If they fail to provide parking space to visitors within the stipulated time, we will take action against them. We issue repeated chalans to owners who put their security guards on public lanes for charging parking fee but we need to hammer them more strictly as they cause inconvenience to general public", said Brar.



Failure to Pay Debt
Bank takes possession of property
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 7
UCO Bank, Haibowal Kalan, today took the physical possession of the property mortgaged in a/c of Gian Chand, Anil Kumar and Mahesh Kumar from Ghumar Mandi.

The parties had availed certain credit facilities from the branch and had defaulted in the repayment of the bank dues to the tune of Rs 8,88,426 as on March 31, 2009. The bank had served a 60-day notice to the borrowers, but the party never responded to it. Hence the bank took possession of the property mortgaged in the aforesaid account. All premises were duly locked and sealed.

The entire procedure was carried out with the assistance of M/s GATS Financial Reconstructors Limited. Meanwhile, officials warned other defaulters of such stringent action in case they failed to pay their debts.



International Environment Day
‘Noise pollution threatening human existence’
Our Correspondent

Mandi Gobindgarh, June 7
Protection of environment and maintenance of ecological balance is necessary because environmental pollution is not only harmful for our health but also endangers our very existence, were the views expressed by Desh Bhagat Group of Institutes chairman Dr Zora Singh

He was presiding over a function organised here, today, to mark the International Environment Day. “Many of our present day problems like global warming, acid rain, draughts and floods are the direct outcomes of environmental pollution and if it goes on unchecked, the day is not far-off when the whole atmosphere will get polluted and we will find it difficult even to breathe” he said.

Singh suggested that the problem could be tackled by adopting a two-pronged policy of checking pollution and bringing maximum area under green cover. He planted a sapling on the institute premises and urged all present to protect the already existing trees and plant more saplings. Vice-chairperson Tejinder Kaur and director -general Prof Shalini Gupta were also present on the occasion and expressed their views.



10-day NSS camp
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, June 7
Vijay Sayal, member of school management committee, RS Model Senior Secondary School, while inaugurating a 10-day NSS camp, exhorted the volunteers to excel in all fields.

Principal ML Kalra and vice-principal Maninderjit Kaur welcomed chief guest and other dignitaries.

NSS officers Lajpat Bains and Kirpal Singh while addressing the volunteers emphasised the importance of community service projects and other activities to be undertaken during the camp.



Bank ATM inaugurated at Payal

Ludhiana, June 7
The Bank of India inaugurated its first ATM in Payal town, claimed bank officials. The ATM was inauguration by PS Rawat, zonal manager. Speaking on the occasion Rawat said the rural population would be facilitated by the newly opened ATM.

After inaugurating the ATM, instructions were also given to the rural people on how to operate an ATM. —TNS



Exam woes for moms too

“After the exam stress and tension of entrance tests now I want to have a pleasant holiday in Kashmir for a week”. The above quote is not of a student but of the mother of a student. It is not only the kids but also the parents, especially mothers, go through the same regime as their kids. A mother, whose kid passed class XII this year, said it was indeed a very tough year for her too. "I use to wake at 4 am, wake up my son to study, take care of his healthy breakfast, send him to tuitions on time and make sure he went to sleep on time at night. Even I was going through the same exam stress as my son. Finally, the result has been declared and my son got admission in a professional college as well. Now I am relieved of the tension and want to spend some time in a peaceful and serene atmosphere," said a caring mother.

City short of parking space

Bursting at seams with the proliferating number of motor vehicles, the mega city is woefully short of parking space. While several ambitious projects for construction of multi-level parking lots in different parts of the city are gathering dust with the civic administration for lack of funds, (or is it lack of will?), Ludhianvis have no other choice but to park their vehicles at every conceivable vacant place along the busy roads, being totally oblivious to inconvenience caused to other road users, or creating obstruction to flow of traffic by haphazardly parked vehicles. Taking advantage of the acute shortage of designated parking spaces, certain enterprising (or call them those who believe in making hay while the sun shines) persons have been running paid parking lots at vacant pieces of land without any authority. That even such unlawful parking places in lot many numbers are thriving in various parts of the city more than underlines the dire need for adequate parking spaces which will not only ease the vehicular traffic but will also bring much needed revenue to the cash-strapped civic body.

Love's muse!

In order to lift the spirits of his upset beloved, a young man decided to sing her a song and asked her choice. On being given a song he was not fully acquainted with, the man sang, though with some omissions. Next day, the lover boy was seen listening to a song over and over again on his i-pod throughout the day. When asked by a colleague as to what made him listen to one particular song the entire day, the man replied with a grin, "My girl likes this song and I want to sing it to her this evening as perfectly as I can. So I am learning the lyrics by heart." The pleasantly surprised colleague left the room wondering if the saying "love and song are synonyms" was true.

Shoe Biz!

Recently, during the inauguration of a charitable hospital of the Durga Mata Mandir Trust, a very unusual scene was witnessed by all present mediapersons, officials from the LMC, district administration and police department. An act of Mayor Hakam Singh Gyaspura astonished all. As the Chief Guest Manoranjan Kalia was addressing a gathering at the temple premises, everyone present had removed their shoes. Gyaspura, too, had to remove shoes to be inside the temple. As soon as he came out, his act shocked everyone. An attendant of the Mayor, may have been a relative, came hurriedly holding the Mayor's shoes in his hands. Perhaps Mayor preferred not to "bend", the attendant helped Mayor wear his shoes not only in the presence of a number of people but in the presence of God, too! Even God must have been surprised seeing the "people in power" on earth.

‘No’ to self-service

The international eatery chains in Punjab have to amend their working when it comes to "self service" as the haughty Punjabis going to these eateries just refuse to get their own orders or leave the leftovers in the waste bins. Be it Dominos, Subway or Caffe Coffee Day, the Punjabi boys and men feel "dwarfed" if asked to carry their meal trays to their tables. It was indeed an interesting scene that I witnessed recently at Subway while having dinner with my husband. A group of boys wiggling their key chains entered the bistro, placed their orders and waited in their seats for the order to be served. When asked by the counter staff to pick their order, one of the boys called a boy working at the eatry with the flip of his finger. Trying his best to be hospitable, the boy smiled and repeated, “Sir you may please take your order from the counter." But the Punjabi boy unable to take no for an answer instead shouted, "Hey! You take this tip of Rs 100 and serve my order at the table." The manager in order to handle the tricky situation took the order to the boys adding, "It is a self- service restaurant sir where we do not serve at the table, not even for smart tips but hospitality is what every Punjabi learns by birth, so here I am serving you with all humility."

Getting the message loud and clear, the boys made it a point to empty their trays in the waste bins before their exit from the eatery.

Leading visibly blind people

Recently our photographer landed in trouble while he was taking photograph of several visually impaired walking in a row, begging for alms.

Suddenly a burly youth, who was leading them, caught hold of the photojournalist's camera and threatened him not to photograph them.

"So, you are the one making money by forcing these destitute to walk in the scorching heat," said the seasoned photojournalist.’’ To which the youth proudly replied, "I am their leader, quite similar the one you have."

After a brief pause, the youth stated further, "I am like those politicians who pocket millions of rupees meant for the development of nation by leading a crowed of mentally blind people. In the same way, I am leading a handful of visibly blind people and making money.

Contributed by: Charu Chhibber, Kuldip Bhatia, Manav Mander, Shivani Bhakoo, Anshu Seth and Mohit Khanna



16-yr-old raped by employer
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, June 7
A minor girl of Rahal village was raped by her employer on Friday evening, when he called her to do labour work in his fields.

The 16-year-old girl belongs to a poor family and works as a daily wager along with her parents on the fields of Mohammad Mashir Alam.

In the village Alam used to cultivate vegetables on the rented land. On Friday he called the girl to the fields to pluck vegetables, as he was to supply an order urgently. Since the job was not a big one she alone reached the fields.

Mashir Alam had ill intention and having got the opportunity, raped her and then threatened her of dire consequences if she did not accompany him to Kishangunj in Bihar, from where he belonged.

Afraid of his moves, she accompanied him. On Friday and Saturday night both of them waited for train at Ludhiana Railway station and spent the day at a hotel near the railway station. They could not board any train to Bihar.

On Sunday afternoon, the accused waiting for the train at the railway platform went to get tea for her. Luckily a train was leaving to Jagraon and she jumped and boarded the train, returned home and narrated the incident to her parents who lodged a complaint at the Jagraon police station.

The medical examination report of the girl confirmed that she had been raped. The Jagraon police today registered a case against the accused under Sections 376, 366, 506 of the IPC.

In the evening today, a police party lead by SI Mohan Das nabbed the accused from the Ludhiana Railway station when he was trying to board a train to Bihar. The accused however denied committing any rape on her but confirmed to have physical relation with her and that too with her consent as both were having an affair since long and wanted to marry each other.

He said the girl had left her home on her wish and had expressed her willingness to visit his village for marriage.



Land grab bid, 3 booked
Rakesh Gupta

Mullanpur Dakha, June 7
The Dakha police has booked three persons of Chachrari village near Jagraon in their bid to grab the land of their NRI cousins.

Darshan Singh of Thakkarwal village, a relative and holder of the general power of attorney dated June 24, 2007 of Baldev Singh, Ajit Singh, Manjit Singh and Hardev Singh all sons of NRI Mehak Singh, alias Mac, also settled in Canada. Darshan Singh in his applications to the SSP, Jagraon, and NRI Cell, Ludhiana, dated February 14, 2008 wrote that accused Karam Singh, Amar Singh and Harkuleej Singh of Chachrari village, the nephews of Mehak Singh, were trying to grab around 5 acre of land own by the sons of Mehak Singh as after the death of Mehak Singh the land in equal shares was transferred in the name of his sons and the mutation was also done in their name. He had stated that on the basis of a forged will of Mehak Singh, the accused were trying to grab the prime land measuring 5 acre and were threatening to eliminate him if he ever entered that land again. The application was probed by the Jagraon police as the NRI cell also forwarded it to the Jagraon police for investigations. SSP, Ludhiana, Rural, Harinder Singh Chahal entrusted DSP Bhupinder Singh to probe the matter.

During investigations, the accused could not produce the original will dated 17 April 1997 and proof of Rs. 55 lakh paid to Mehak Singh as claimed by the accused as full and final payment of the land.

In the final report, DSP Bhupinder Singh ruled that in 1997 the rates of agriculture land was not at par as stated by the accused and in absence the signatures of Mehak Singh could not be compared with that on the will and expressly gave his opinion that either the accused had fraudulently taken the signatures on the will or had forged it themselves or got it fabricated by somebody else. A case has been registered at Dakha police station. No arrest has been made.



Youth beaten up

Ludhiana, June 7
Objecting to lewd remarks by several youths while watching a movie in PVR cinema proved costly for a 25-year-old man, who was beaten up badly by youths this afternoon here today.

Harvinder Singh raised an objection during the movie and entered into an argument with a group of youths. When they came out after the movie, the youths overpowered him and beat him up.

The victim sustained serious injuries and was rushed to CMC hospital. His condition is critical. Police has registered a case against miscreants. His statement has however not been recorded as he is not in a condition to speak. — TNS



Chaman Lal Cricket Cup
National Club drub Mahajan Masters by 10 runs
Anil Datt

Ludhiana, June 7
Useful batting performance by Dipin Chitkara, Rohit who scored 13 and 11 runs respectively and an equally valuable contribution with the ball by Vishwanath Saini (4 for 11) went in vain as the Mahajan Masters lost to the National Club by 10 runs in the second match of the 15th Chaman Lal Malhotra Cricket Cup Tournament (U-14) being played at MGM Public School, Dugri, here, today.

The National Club made 98 runs in 21.4 overs with Shivam top scoring 15 runs, followed by Nitin and Tushar, who contributed 8 and 5 runs, respectively.

For the Mahajan Masters, Vishwanath Saini was the pick of bowlers, who scalped four victims for 11 runs while Akash accounted for two wickets after conceding 7 runs. Rahul Sikka took one for 4 and Kunwar Makkar captured one for 14.

In reply, the Mahajan Masters were bowled out for 88 runs in 23 overs thus falling short of the target by just 11 runs.

For the National Club, Nitin and Shubhankar shared the bowling honours. Nitin grabbed four wickets for 14 runs while Shubhankar consumed three for 5.

Brief scores

National Club: 98 all out in 21.4 overs ( Nitin 8, Shivam 15, Tushar 5; Anirudh 2 for 11, Vishwanath Saini 4 for 11, Akash 2 for 7, Rahul Sikka 1 for 4 and Kunwar Makkar 1 for 14).

Mahajan Masters: 88 all out in 23 overs ( Dipin Chitkara 13, Harnoor 6, Rohit 11, Vishwanath Saini 10; Nitin 4 for 14, Shubhankar 3 for 5 and Ashmit 1 for 8).



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