L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Molestation: Jail Supdt innocent
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 17
The Special Investigation Team (SIT), constituted to look into the allegations of molestation against a Jail Superintendent by a clerk, has given him a clean chit.

The Director-General, Jails, had ordered a probe into the allegations and constituted a SIT in the case.

The department is planning to take disciplinary action against the jail clerk. It is learnt that her increment would be deducted as punishment.

Sources said during the probe, the clerk gave varied statements and cracked before investigating officials. She allegedly admitted that she had made false charges against him after being instigated by certain jail officials.

The jail sources said she was now trying to effect a compromise with the Jail Superintendent. She had even apologised to him before the jail staff. The sources said the allegations were the fallout of internal rivalry in the jail department.

Earlier this month, she had levelled false allegations against Borstal Jail Superintendent Kuldip Singh and even wrote to the DG (Jails) in this connection.

Following the allegations, the Superintendent Headquarters (Jail), Patiala, Surinderpal Singh, visited the jail to look into the matter.

Kuldeep Singh said: “I am not interested in initiating action against the woman clerk. I have faith in God and I knew I was right. I am happy that the truth has prevailed.”

Expressing regret over the episode, a senior jail official stated such allegations cause embarrassment to officials. “Their personal life also suffers a jolt,” he said.

Kuldeep Singh had earlier hinted that certain jail officials had instigated the clerk.


No Man-preet for garlands, bouquets
Kuldip Bhatia

Ludhiana, June 17
Punjab Finance and Planning Minister Manpreet Singh Badal today set an example which others of his clan would find hard to follow.

Manpreet, who was to preside over a state-level lucky coupon prize distribution function of the small savings department at the Guru Nanak Dev Bhawan here, desired through an office order issued on June 1 that there should be no wasteful expenditure on items like garlands, bouquets, refreshment and mementos for him and accompanying officers of the department.

He made an exception for small savings agents and other guests, who could be entertained as per the prevailing practice, the order said.

In an interaction with mediapersons, he said farmers in Punjab ought to pay electricity bills and the state government stood by its commitment to reimburse charges by payment of productivity bonus.

Commenting on the call given by the Bharti Kisan Union to farmers not to pay water and electricity bills, the minister said, “Nothing comes for free. It is my humble request to farmers to pay the bills as resource generation is a crucial factor for development.”

On the goods and service tax (GST) regime, proposed to be brought into force from April 2011, Manpreet said nothing had been finalised yet and various model of the GST were being studied.

“The GST is in force in around 200 countries and we cannot remain isolated. It will be our endeavour that purchase tax on foodgrain is kept out of the GST purview.”

Replying to a question on the hue and cry being raised by the industry on hike in electricity duty from 10 to 13 per cent, the minister said the proposal was a part of state budget for the current financial year and no new burden had been put on the industrial sector.

Claiming that funds for welfare scheme like old-age pension, ‘shagun’ and scholarships were released in the first week every month without fail from April 2010 onwards, he said the department would look into the cases of old arrears.

He made it clear that procedural wrangles in the way of state lottery resumption had been cleared, but there were certain guidelines of the union government which had to be incorporated in tender documents. “The tender documents are ready and online tenders will be floated next week,” he said.

Presiding over the prize distribution function of lucky draw coupons, he lauded the achievements of the small savings department, which had raised Rs 2,465 crore during last financial year.

It was due to excellent performance of the department that the state, which had failed to secure any loan from the Centre for that last two years, had been granted a loan of Rs 1,576 crore during 2009-10. He announced that the demand of small savings agents for enhancement in commission had been accepted.



Staff Crunch
No relief in sight for fire dept
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 17
It appears the municipal corporation’s fire department will continue to face a staff shortage for some more time thanks to mayor Hakam Singh Gyaspura’s decision to go slow on fresh recruitment. The process received a setback after he raised certain "objections" even after medical fitness tests of the "almost selected" candidates were conducted.

The recruitment, on the basis of merit, for the posts of firemen and drivers was held earlier by MC officials, the recruitment process got hampered. Gyaspura insisted the move had to be first approved by the civic body’s general house. However, the latter did not take up the issue at its meeting held on June 15.

One of the hopefuls, a city resident who was shortlisted from among 325 candidates and had cleared all the tests, said on the condition of anonymity he was waiting to get his appointment letter.

"I’m more than qualified for the job. Besides, I cleared all the practical tests. MC officials had told the selected candidates they would be intimated soon, but none of us has received any communication from the authorities till date. I’ve come to know this recruitment exercise might not be considered valid, which will be unfortunate. If this happens, we plan to sue the officials concerned in court?" he asked. According to sources, about 40 firemen and half a dozen drivers were “almost selected” by officials after practical tests held on June 1,2 and 3. Most of the candidates were said to be “highly qualified” with some even holding BSc (IT), MA and BA degrees.

However, the mayor raised an objection since recruitment process did not get approval of the general house and certain discrepancies were found in the process, the selections will not be considered. When asked Gyaspura had told The Tribune the issue would be discussed at the MC’s general house meeting on June 15. Said a senior civic body official: "This important issue was not even touched upon at the general house meeting even though the fire department has been facing an acute staff-crunch. After many years it was decided to recruit 40 firemen on contractual basis for a salary of about Rs 3,500 a month. Their selections were almost completed and they had to be issued appointment letters. But at the last minute due to the objections raised by the mayor the exercise is likely to begin from scratch.”



Polio victim in chains despite SC ruling
Mentally disturbed after mishap
Gurminder Singh Grewal

Khamano June 17
Despite the Supreme Court ruling prohibiting the chaining of the mentally disturbed, a 30-year old of Dholewal village is being treated like cattle.

Balwinder Singh, mentally disturbed after meeting with an accident four years ago, has been chained by his family at a shelter meant for livestock in their house.

Misfortune seems to have followed him everywhere. He contracted polio when he was an infant and developed a handicap in his leg.

His parents provided him education till class VIII, after which he started helping his father in farming.

About four years ago, Balwinder was seriously injured in a road accident near Patiala and his legs got fractured.

He was confined to his house. He took to drugs and was mentally disturbed. “We took him to several doctors, but his condition worsened,” said Ram Singh, his father.

Soon after, he became violent. He started abusing others and pelting stones at passersby. His family was forced to tie him in chains in a corner, said Ram Singh.

He stated that he was unaware of any apex court directive on the issue. He said when under a violent attack, Balwinder would became too powerful to be controlled.

Family members said although it was painful to see Balwinder in this condition, they were forced to tie him. They had appealed to the district administration, the health department and the Punjab government to come to their aid for his treatment.



Women Entrepreneurs-II
This sister act is in full flow
Manav Mander
Tribune News Service

Monica (seated) and Sonica Malhotra Kandhari
Monica (seated) and Sonica Malhotra Kandhari

Ludhiana, June 17
They have shown their mettle and amply proved women can successfully not only sustain but also carry forward their father’s legacy. Monica Malhotra Kandhari and Sonica Malhotra Kandhari, both siblings, are now effectively steering their family business.

From managing a publishing house to running a hotel and retail stores, the sisters have managed to come out on top. Monica is now senior director and Sonica is director of the MBD Group, a well-known publication house.

Married to brothers who run their own businesses, both Monica and Sonica are busy realising their father’s dream, which was to convey to the world that he was blessed to have two daughters. The dream of owning a world-class hotel was what their father always wanted. Though he is no more the sisters have taken to building multistoried hotels and malls.

“It was our joint decision to join our father in his business seven years ago. He beat rivals in the publishing industry and attained a leading position. We’re now faced with the tough challenge of proving ourselves,” says Monica.

Their father’s ambition to have his own hotels is now close to being realised. “I was entrusted with the task of making a foray into real estate and the hospitality industry. There aren’t many women in this business but I’ve been successful. Today I’m also looking after the stationery and paper units that are the new babies of our group,” beams Sonica.

“We’re building one of the finest hotels in India. We gathered people in Ludhiana and Jalandhar are connoisseurs of luxury and travel frequently to Delhi and Mumbai for shopping. And so we decided to provide them luxury here. Residents can now look forward to have a world-class shopping experience at our mall that is currently under construction in the city, along with a five-star hotel.” says Monica.

So how has their journey been so far? “Belonging to the fair sex was never a stumbling block. Most people looked at us with awe. We were groomed in a way that enabled us to grow up to become confident human beings. We were focused on our targets and proved our capabilities. I’m conditioned to analyse my shortcomings and then overcome them”, says Sonica.

The sisters emphasise they should be determined and remain focused. "In the beginning one may feel the heat as it is Herculean task. Determination is the key to success. One who sails through the initial three years in a business can never be defeated," they aver.

“Provide the people with basic infrastructure and we can beat the world. Speeding up India’s economic growth will require massive investments in infrastructure, turning out skilled labour and manufacturing capacity. The country needs a four-to five-fold hike in investment levels over the next five years. This means India's track record in converting investment plans to reality will have to go up manifold," feels Monica.

“Transportation, including railway systems, has to be more efficient. Highways have to meet global standards." signs off Sonica.

Featuring tomorrow: Swastika D Sobti, proprietor of Cake Square.

Profile in Brief

Monica Kandhari
Designation: Senior director of MBD Group
Age: 35
Academic qualifications: BCom
Success mantra: Taking the team along. Have a very semiprofessional approach at workplace
Lucky charm: My father
My daily routine
Wake up at 6 am and read newspapers; drop kids to school and leave for gym; go to office; return home and attend to my children; watch TV; weekends are for family and friends. Watch a movie every week

Sonica Malhotra Kandhari
Designation: Director of MBD Group
Age: 30
Academic qualifications: BCom, MBA, PLD
Success mantra: Be focused and put in your best efforts
Lucky charm: My father
My daily routine
Read newspapers and spend some time by myself. Do yoga on alternate days; leave for office by 9 am; return home by 10 pm; go to gym after 10 pm; on weekends spend two hours at a spa along with my mom. Have a cup of coffee with friends. Sometimes my husband also joins us. In the evening it’s movie time.



Central Employment Scheme
Sarpanch ‘engages’ labourers for a song
Our Corresponding

Jagraon, June 17
The sarpanch of Kaunke Khosa village has been accused of exploiting village labourers employed by him under the government employment scheme.

Sarpanches are involved in providing village poor employment by preparing their job cards and releasing payments. Under the scheme, labourers get a daily wage of Rs 123.

It is alleged that around 50 labourers, including men and women, had been engaged in transplanting paddy seedlings in the 25-acre fields of sarpanch Jarnail Singh in spite of the fact that the work under the scheme had finished on June 13.

The sarpanch, however, denied that labourers engaged by him under scheme had been working in his field.

While there is an acute shortage of workers and they charge between Rs 200 and Rs 300 per day along with two meals, the workers engaged in the fields of the sarpanch were getting Rs 123 per day, that too, without any meal.

Sources said the matter came to light after the workers refused to work in the fields of other panches at these rates.

Some labourers, on the condition of anonymity, said the sarpanch had threatened to exclude those from next year’s employment who failed to work for him in his fields.

Jagraon BDPO Harvinder Singh Jassal said he was looking into the matter. He, however, maintained that the labourers were never told by the sarpanch that they were working under the employment scheme.

He said appropriate action would be taken against the sarpanch if he was found guilty of abusing his powers.



Sans drugs, farmhands refuse to hit fields
Mahesh Sharma

Mandi Ahmedgarh, June 17
With paddy growers failing to provide migrant labourers with drugs and narcotics, the latter have chosen to sit idle than undertake the strenuous task of transplanting paddy.

Even the lure of providing free food and accommodation has failed to get the labourers back in the fields.

Though paddy growers had started engaging local labourers to transplant paddy, the latter failed to yield the desired results.

Investigations by Ludhiana Tribune revealed that work on transplanting paddy had yet pick up in Ludhiana and Sangrur districts. Diversion of migrant labourers to areas where paddy growers offered to supply drugs and narcotics was cited as a major reason behind the situation.

Transplantation of paddy in a large number of fields at Chhappar, Barundi, Latala, Pohir, Lehra, Dhulkot, Ghungrana and Jartoli villages was yet to start even though the owners of these fields had prepared the soil.

Heaps of saplings of paddy plants lying in fields and scum appearing on surface of stagnant water narrated the telltale story of shortage of labour.

The farmers had failed to attract and retain labourers for want of drugs and narcotics. Free supply of poppy husk and certain psychotropic drugs was the precondition of leaders of groups of migrant labourers negotiating terms for work.

A farmer of Chhapar village, on condition of anonymity, said he had to engage local work force when a group of migrant labourers left the work midway as he had shown his inability to supply poppy husk.

Sources said opium, poppy husk and certain pharmaceutical preparation had been conceived as substance to alleviate fatigue among labourers and farmers.

Supplying these “fatigue relievers” had emerged as common practice among paddy growers in the past.

Taking notice of the trend, the police had launched special drive against drug addiction from June 5 to June 15.

Farmers, fearing police action, preferred not to commit to supply of the contraband to farm labourers, hence the situation.

Paddy Transplant

Farmers have failed to attract and retain labourers for want of drugs and narcotics. Free supply of poppy husk and certain psychotropic drugs is the precondition of leaders of groups of migrant labourers negotiating terms for work



Reorganisation of Sub-divisions
Police stations run from religious places, unsafe buildings
Mahesh Sharma

Mandi Ahmedgarh, June 17
The reorganisation of police stations and sub-divisions according to the reconstituted Assembly segments, besides tardy administrative procedures, has created accommodation problems too.

In the absence of requisite premises at the disposal of the administration, the authorities have been forced to open police stations and chowkis in unsafe and, at times, borrowed buildings.

And, policemen pretend to be satisfied with the meager facilities and the conditions prevailing at their setups.

As a majority of newly established offices are located on the outskirts of villages and towns, justice-seekers hesitate even to visit these places.

Investigation by Ludhiana Tribune revealed that finding suitable accommodation for newly created and upgraded police stations and chowkis had emerged as a major problem for the administration. The situation had created problems for both public and staff posted at these establishments.

Unable to find any suitable place in any of the villages, the Ludhiana (rural) police has shifted a part of staff of the Latala Chowki to Guga Mari Chhappar, near here.

A number of barricades wearing police insignia, set up on the Ahmedgarh-Lohatbaddi village road, have proved as scarecrow for anti-social elements. However, the policemen posted there have to sit in a verandah in the backyard of a religious place.

There is no room to secure arms and ammunition and records belonging to the chowki.

Detainees, if any, are taken to an old building located at some distance at Latala village.

As a large number of people visit the shrine daily to pay obeisance, functioning of the office is affected adversely and devotees find it difficult to meditate there.

Maintaining that crime rate had decreased after the establishment of the chowki there, Jodhan SHO Inder Jit Singh said the village panchayat had resolved to transfer a plot for the construction of building for the chowki.

“As a stopgap arrangement, policemen do not bother much about the facilities at their disposal. At the same time, we have directed them to ensure that minimum inconvenience is caused to devotees visiting the religious place,” he said, maintaining that the construction of new building would start soon.

Buildings housing the office of recently upgraded Sadar police station, Ahmedgarh, and Sandaur police station also seem to be inadequate for the proper functioning.

The administration is yet to find a suitable place for the office of Amargarh DSP who is supposed to look after policing in areas spread along a 40-km stretch.



Felling: VB orders probe, to count trees along NH 1
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 17
Now the tress would also go for population count and none other than the Punjab Vigilance Bureau would do it counting on the National Highway No.1.

The bureau would also probe into the matter of illegal felling on the National Highway.

The investigating agency would also check the numeration registers from 1995 to 2010 to collect the record of trees.

This step was taken after city resident Harish Kumar filed a public interest litigation No. 10477, in the Punjab and Haryana High Court demanding a CBI probe into the illegal felling on the pretext of widening of the highway.

The litigant quoted the example of the illegal felling in the Jalandhar range, the investigation of which was being conducted by the Jalandhar range vigilance bureau.

After going through the details, the Punjab and Haryana High Court directed Harish Kumar to approach the department.

"Many skeletons will tumble out of the closet if the bureau probes into the matter of how much grant the forest department has received for the protection and plantation of trees and how much they have spend on it so far,” said Harish.

I filed a PIL after the senior officials if the forest department did not take action against the corrupt officials, he added.

Harish, a former employee of the forest department said the bureau did not need to conduct a physical checking of trees.

“The agency just need to check the numeration registers as the figures don’t match with each other,” said Harish Kumar.



Back from the top, woman honoured
Our Correspondent

Amloh, June 17
Thirty-year-old Mamta Sodha of Kaithal in Haryana, who reached atop Mount Everest on May 22, was honoured by the local Punjab Sabhyacharak and Sports Club here today.

Accompanied by her mother Mewa Devi and uncle Phool Singh Gautam, she passed through the bazaars here in an open Jeep in a procession to the venue of the function.

Panjab Scheduled Castes Commission member and ex-minister Dalip Singh Pandhi gave her the National Hero Award. Students and artistes presented a cultural programme.

Earlier in an interview, Mamta shared her experiences with mediapersons. She had got training from the Nehru Institute of Mountaineering at Uttarkashi in 2003 and 2006.

She had climbed the Friendship Peak (Manali) in 2007, the Phwararang peak (Kinnaur) in 2008, the Mun Peak (Kangra) in 2008 and again in 2009, the Shri Kanth Peak (Uttarkashi) in 2009 and the Chanderkhani Pass in 2009.



No takers for 97,500 quintal confiscated sugar
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, June 17
The local Food and Civil Supplies Department is finding it hard to dispose off sugar which was confiscated from three different godowns on the periphery of the city in September last year.

The seizures of about 97,500 quintals of hoarded sugar were made during the peak of festival season last year when the prices of sugar were touching the sky and it was claimed to be one of the biggest catch of the essential commodities.

Having failed twice to sell the sugar for various reasons amidst legal hassles, the department had finally managed to sold 8,500 quintals of sugar on June 12 to at least six traders from different parts of Punjab at a little more than Rs 2,700 per quintal the reserve price fixed for the commodity.

Questions were also raised on the quality of sugar manufactured in 2007-08, which normally has a shelf life of two years. However, on the intervention of Deputy Commissioner Rahul Tewari, the health authorities had taken samples of the confiscated sugar and sent the same to the Government Laboratory in Chandigarh, which gave it a clean chit.

Another lot of 11,500 quintals of sugar was sold through an open auction conducted under the supervision of KR Singla, District Food and Supplies Controller (East) here today. At least 24 traders took part in the auction and purchased sugar at an average price of Rs 2,705 per quintal as against the reserve price of Rs 2,700 per quintal.

According to Singla, a little more than 51,000 quintals of sugar will soon be sold.



69-yr-old measuring India on foot
Wants to register his name in Guinness Book of World Record
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 17
For Vallabhdas Chudasama walking is mission, when others of his age are waiting to get their arthritis treated from a doctor, this 69- year-old retired assistant manager of Indo Petro Chemical Limited, Baroda, Gujarat, has walked nearly 59,200 km on foot for spreading the message of women empowerment and conservation.

On his way to fifth sojourn to Amarnath Shrine, the sexagenarian who was born in Karachi, Pakistan, began the first leg of his epic voyage from Vadodara in June 2003 and has so far visited 26 states.

Chudasama, who proudly calls himself the Google Map of India, said his wife Pushpa Ben encouraged him to walk. “And since then there has been no looking back. I have walked in almost every part of India,” says he.

Chudasama laughingly said, “While most of the retired men, heeding to their wives’ advice, walk for about a km a day, I listened to her advice a bit too seriously.”

He starts his journey at 3 am and walks for 45 km everyday. Praising the rich traditions of India, he said, “People here still uphold the ancient traditions of ‘atithi devo bhavah’ (guest is God). Wherever I go, people give me free food, lodging and everything I need.”

He has twice stayed with dacoits in Chambal. Even they did not let him leave empty stomach.

On his stopover in the industrial city, he says, “I have a special love for Punjab. The kind of greenery and hospitality one receives here is unmatched. I have travelled 26 states on foot and I can say it with confidence that no land is as beautiful as Punjab.”

During his second round of ‘padayatra’, in 2005, he covered the boundaries of India, starting off from Amarnath in Jammu and Kashmir to the southern tip of the country. After passing through Punjab, Rajasthan, Gujarat, Maharashtra and Mangalore, he has visited Kanyakumari too.

While in his first tour, he visited Rameshvaram, Kolkata, and 24 states to reach Amarnath. Armed with orange rucksack and an orange stick, this grey-haired man, popularly known as ‘Baba’ amongst onlookers, is looking ahead to register his name in the Gunnies Book of World record.

“I have three children-a son and two daughters. All are married and well settled. I call them every week. I stay at roadside dhabas, inns and religious places. India is my home and I am proud to be an Indian,” said Chaudasma as he signs off for his next stop to Jalandhar.



Don’t attach gardeners with councillors: Park panels
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 17
Earlier, there were a few officers, who “misused” gardeners of the Ludhiana Municipal Corporation (LMC) by getting their services as gatekeepers, drivers or domestic helpers. Now, its councillors’ turn to follow the suit, said members of the park management committees in the city.

The recent decision to attach at least 400 gardeners of the corporation with the councillors (ward-wise), has irked the committee members who feel that the gardeners, being the corporation employees, should be answerable to authorities and not to the area councillors.

President of thePark Management Committees (PMCs) of Ludhiana SS Chana said the city had more than 750 parks (big as well as small) out of which 400 were being maintained by the committees alone by hiring their own gardeners/caretakers.

There were about 350 public parks in the city, which were in the state of utter neglect. Most of these parks were in Focal Point, Industrial Area and on the Chandigarh road.

Due to negligence on the part of authorities, these parks had become perfect den for anti-social elements.

In February 2008 during a meeting with the committees, Mayor Hakam Singh Gyaspura along with then Commissioner Vikas Pratap had decided that the services of the gardeners would be used for maintaining unattended, neglected parks under the supervision of the corporation.

"If gardeners are attached with the area Councillors, they will be exploited again. In posh areas like Sarabha Nagar, Randhir Singh Nagar or Gurdev Nagar, the public parks are being maintained by the committees.

There are no attended or neglected parks. Now what will the gardeners do in these areas? As they will be attached with the councillors, they will work for latter.

But unattended parks on the outskirts will still remain in neglect,” said Chana further adding that the horticulture department of the corporation should put three-four gardeners to maintain one such (big park) unattended park. If the park remains in state of shambles, gardeners should be given warning or action should be taken against them.

"But you can not take an action against the councillors as they are not the public servants. The gardeners are employees of the corporation, which has to utilise their services properly,” said Chana.



Sukhbir thanked for decision on NOCs
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 17
A meeting of office-bearers of the Chamber of Industrial and Commercial Undertakings was held today under the chairmanship of Manjit Singh Khalsa.

They discussed the withdrawal of no-objection certificates (NOCs) for new electricity connections and extension of old ones in mixed-land use and urban areas as per the master plan of Ludhiana.

During a visit of Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal Manoranjan Kalia and Hira Singh Gabria on May 25 to the office of the United Cycle and Parts Manufacturers Association, Sukhbir announced the waiver of NOCs for those areas.



Inspection by dept of weights & measures
Twenty years and still waiting
Manav Mander
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 17
The casual attitude of the weights and measures department is costing the state exchequer dear. It has come into light that the department has not conducted regular checking, which are scheduled every year, at the bus stand, railway station and post office.

A stipulated amount of fees is paid to the department to renew the seals on the weights and measures and thus the government is suffering monetary losses.

City resident Vishnu Dev sought an information under the RTI (the copy of which is with The Tribune) and it came to the fore that the checking has not been conducted at these places since the past 15-20 years.

“The measure at railway station shows wrong weight. If the weight is around 70 kg it will show 105 kg. Same is the case at bus stand and post office. The government is losing huge revenue in the form of fees. Besides, general public is also suffering losses due to difference in weighing scales,” said Dev.

While in the private sector nobody is spared by the department as heavy penalty is slapped in case a person fails to get the weights and measures renewed, the checking is almost lacking in the government departments.

Dev alleged that the department was hand in glove with some private shopkeepers and renewed their license by taking a hefty amount even if the weights and measures were faulty. “Since they cannot extract money from the government departments, they avoid raiding them,” he alleged.

Despite repeated attempts department officials could not be contacted.



Magician Samrat Shankar honoured

Ludhiana, June 17
Women Welfare Council has honoured magician Samrat Shankar for raising his voice against female foeticide, dowry deaths and various other social evils.

Council’s president Monika Khurana said people must be made aware of these evils. “This situation has become alarming after the decline in the sex ratio. It is time we should raise above the prejudices and accept the fact that girls and boys are equal and today girls are marching ahead in every field,” she added. Chairperson of the council Rajni Arora said the initiative taken by the Samrat Shankar was the best way to make people aware of social evils while entertaining them,” she added. — TNS



School’s admn block sealed

Ludhiana, June 17
The administrative block of the Pothohar Sayad Khalsa Senior Secondary School at Field Gunj here was sealed following orders of SDM (East) Manpreet Chatwal today.

The action was taken following a dispute between two factions of the school administration. District Education Officer Bachitter Singh was appointed receiver. — TNS



From Schools & Colleges
Children learn dance, sketching

Students display their talent during the summer camp at Shifaly International School in Ludhiana on Thursday.
Students display their talent during the summer camp at Shifaly International School in Ludhiana on Thursday. A Tribune photograph

Ludhiana, June 17
A summer camp concluded here on Thursday at Shifaly International School, Rahon Road. During the camp, children learnt various activities like horse riding, playing the violin, Western dance, taekwondo, free hand sketching.

Students from other institutions also participated in the camp. Teachers were appointed for teaching various activities to kids.

Yoga, art mark summer camp

Students of Drishti Dr RC Jain Innovative Public School perform during the closing ceremony of a summer camp on Thursday.
Students of Drishti Dr RC Jain Innovative Public School perform during the closing ceremony of a summer camp on Thursday. A Tribune photograph

A 10-day summer camp was held at Drishti Dr RC Jain Innovative Public School, Pakhowal Road, from June 7 to 17. It provided an opportunity to students to improve their skills in cookery and craft, dance, music and games.

Early in the mornings, a half-an-hour session of yoga comprising warm-up exercises, stretching exercises and different asanas was also held. Music classes focusing on Sufi, classical and folk were also held. The dance classes were a confluence of antiquity and modernity with Sufi and salsa moving hand in hand.

Whether it was their art class of ceramic painting, glass painting, portrait making and calligraphy or their craft class of making collages, soft toys and wall hangings, it was all excitement for the kids.


Punjab College of Technical Education achieved 185 per cent placements in MBA. As many as 69 companies have offered jobs to PCTE students. The session for MBA 2008-2010 ended on Wednesday after the final project viva.

“Salient feature of this year’s placement was that MBA (International Business) students had more offers than general MBA. Almost each student of this batch has more than one offer letter. Majority of the students got placed in February and the second placement session began with the job fair in April. The job fair was a huge success and the students landed with more jobs,” said Dr KNS Kang, director general, PCTE Group of Institutes.

BA III results declared

SDP: Priyanka Arora of SDP College for Women brought laurels to her alma mater by obtaining the first position in the college with 82.04 per cent in BA III, the result of which was declared today by Panjab University, Chandigarh.

Pooja Rani stood second in the college with 78.29 per cent and Jyoti got the third position with a score of 76.58 per cent. The overall pass percentage of the college is 90.9 per cent.

GNKCW: Students of BA III of Guru Nanak Khalsa College for Women, Gujarkhan campus, have brought laurels to the institution by bagging excellent scores in the exams conducted by Panjab University. Amandeep Kaur has topped the college with 81.83 per cent, Karandeep Kaur has stood second with 78.04 per cent and Shweta came third in the college with a score of 76.29 per cent. The pass percentage of the college is 97 per cent. As many as 96 students have secured first divisions.

MTS: Neelu, a student of BA III of Master Tara Singh Memorial College for Women, bagged the first position in her college by scoring 80.9 per cent in the exams held in April. While Sukhpreet Kaur secured the second position with 76.8 per cent, Prabhjot Kaur stood third with 74.3 per cent. Sixty-four students bagged first divisions.

BCom (honours) results

Students of Sri Aurobindo College of Commerce and Management have added another feather in the cap of the institution by securing gold medals in BCom III (honours) in finance and marketing in the examination conducted by Panjab University.

Ritika Thapar clinched the gold in finance (honours) while Surbhi bagged one in marketing. The overall pass percentage of the college in BCom III (honours) is 100 per cent. As many as 53 students, out of 56 who appeared, scored first divisions and 12 bagged distinctions.



It’s time to primp for kids
Charu Chhibber
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 17
It’s official. If grown ups can follow them, so can the young ones. Fashion trends are for all ages. But while stylish men and glam women hog the limelight when it comes to the latest in apparel, footwear and accessories; the little ones, especially preteens, are often found fretting about lack of proper information and guidance as to what is in vogue for them. We, at Ludhiana Tribune, have decided to give the “growing up” boys and girls their fair share of knowledge on the latest fashion trends for them.

Must-haves for prince

Shorts: Boys of all ages simply love shorts. Long and roomy cargo and athletics shorts are trendy as well as comfy. To the knee or just above as well as the capri style are popular. This year boys’ shorts with cleaner lines and a slightly slimmer fit are in trend. Patterned, plaids, pinstripes and camouflage shorts in all colours are in vogue.

Tees: The quintessential piece of clothing is being used as canvas to display works of graphic art, funny words and sayings, self or celeb portraits and just about anything. Shirts: A button-down plaid shirt is an absolute must have. It’s cool to wear it on its own, it’s cooler to wear it open to expose a graphic tee or layered under a polo. A plaid shirt is perfect for a formal evening out.

Jeans: Boys’ jeans get a make-over this year. The slim fit has been replaced by roomier fit. Also, distressed jeans are making a come back, along with whiskered and grey jeans.

Footwear: Get cool with retro-inspired athletics shoes. Think classic canvas and snap up a pair or invest in a branded pair of evergreen floaters.

Colours: Pair lowers in earthy shades of black, navy, grey, brown, beige with shirts or tees in peppy hues of red, yellow, green, electric blue and even purple.

Accessories: A sporty watch and a smart belt are essentials for every boy. Top off the stylish look with a super-cool hat or cap and add some cool-factor to your summer outfits.

Must-haves for princess

Tees, tanks and tops: Like boys’ tees, those for girls, too, are being used to display creativity. Tees and tanks with graphic art, funny logos and pictures are in. Vests, too, are in big time, besides the usual printed tops in stylish cuts and hues.

Jeans: Faded is fad. Yes, faded and distressed denim is back, be it a pair of jeans or capris. Say goodbye to dark skinny jeans and hello to comfortable, relaxed and casual denim.

Skirts: Get psychedelic with fun and funky tie-dye and floral printed skirts of varying lengths. Short skirts in denim or other tough fabrics are definitely a hit.

Leggings: Leggings are getting a whole lot funkier with patterns, prints and cuts. Bright coloured, translucent leggings in lycra are very popular. These are super trendy and hot! Hot pants: Don’t let a short dress play a spoilsport! Francie pants are here to save the day. When worn under a teeny-weeny dress, these can save one from stares. These can also be paired with a comfort-fit top for that perfect outfit to beat the summer heat.

Dresses: Think vintage Halston but kiddie sized. Pair up a fab dress with a pair of strappy flats for that unbeatable look.

Footwear: Flat sandals in metallic or basic shades and strappy slippers of all colours are in. Funky gladiators are evergreen, while ballerinas, too, continue to attract girls.

Accessories: Fun accessories like hair bands, clips, tic-tacs, watches, colourful ear studs add instant zing and personality to your favourite summer outfits.



Land Dispute
Brother, nephews booked for killing man
Tribune News Service

Hawara (Khamano), June 17
A 70-year-old man was reportedly beaten to death by his brother and nephews over a petty land dispute.

Joga Singh, who was done to death, was collecting green gram (moong dal) from his fields when they allegedly attacked by his brother Modan Singh and his sons Randhir and Gurmail.

Joga Singh died on the spot after being hit by an iron tool. The accused fled away after committing the crime.

A few passers by informed Joga’s family members about the incident. They rushed to the spot only to find him dead.

As per the investigating officer Manohar Singh, the deceased had two brothers, Modan Singh and Mahinder Singh, an ex-serviceman.

Mahinder Singh did not get married and had handed over his entire 7.5 acres to Modan before his death two years ago.

Joga Singh and his family members had been accusing family members of Modan of still eying on their land.

Joga Singh accused his brother and nephews of trying to change the demarcation in his fields. He cursed them for changing the boundary lines of fields even after getting the 7.5 acres ‘free of cost’. Irate over the nagging, the accused allegedly attacked him and hacked him to death.

A case under Sections 302 and 34 of the IPC has been registered on the complaint of the deceased’s son Gurnam Singh against Modan and his two sons who are still at large.



One held for stealing trucks
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 17
The city police has nabbed a man for selling stolen trucks and impounded three stolen trucks from his possession.

The accused, identified as Ravinder Singh of Moti Nagar, has been nabbed from the Jodhewal Basti chowk.

According to Division No. 4 SHO Davinder Kumar, the police received information that Ravinder had been preparing fake documents of the stolen trucks to sell those.

The police laid a trap and nabbed the accused. During interrogation, he confessed to the crime. He was produced in court, which sent him in police remand.

Ravinder said he had been operating an inter-state vehicle-theft gang. The police also recovered trucks which the accused had stolen along with his accomplice.



Two nabbed for stealing 60 rice bags
Our Correspondent

Mullanpur Dakha, June 17
The police claims to have busted a gang of thieves involved in committing theft in various districts. The police laid a naka near a bridge on the national highway at Chowkiman village and intercepted a Mahindra Pickup (PB 32 G 8884).

The accused tried to evade the naka. However, the police arrested two out of the six. Those arrested have been identified as Jagdev Singh of Bahiram village in Nawanshahar district and Gurmeet Singh of Kamma village near Khanna, the owner and the driver of the vehicle.

The accused sitting in the open compartment of the vehicle managed to flee. While two of the accused have been identified as Raja Ram and Vikas. The identity of the remaining two could not be established.

One of the accused confessed to having stolen 60 bags of rice from Wahe Guru Rice Mill of Bagha Purana town in Moga district. The other accused, however, denied his involvement in the case and said he owned the vehicle and was offered a high fare rate for transporting the goods. The Dakha police has booked them under Sections 379 and 411 of the IPC and impounded the vehicle.

The police said the accused were getting organised and were committing theft after striking a deal with the purchasers through a middleman. Neither the accused nor the prospective buyers knew each other, reducing the chances of arrest if any one party got arrested.



Six nabbed for flesh trade
Tribune Reporters

Ludhiana, June 17
The city police has nabbed three women and three youths for running a flesh trade racket following a raid at Chand Hotel near Chaura Bazaar here yesterday.

Senior woman police official Lila Wati along with the team of the Kotwali police station raided the hotel following a tip-off.

The raid followed complaints by residents that three women were running a flesh trade racket in city hotels.

The women were operating the prostitution racket for the past several months. All of them have been booked under the Immoral Activities Prevention Act.

Two arrested

Jagraon: The Jodhan police has nabbed a youth along with unaccounted habit-forming tablets of various salts and eight bottles of cough syrups from his possession. Arrested accused has been identified as Harnam Singh of Gujjarwal village. He was nabbed from Phallewal village. The accused was going to deliver the medicine to their prospective clients.

Meanwhile, Daljit Singh of Patti Lahna was arrested from Andlu village and unaccounted habit forming drugs and cough syrup bottles were seized from his possession. The Jodhan and Raikot police registered a case against the accused under sections 22, 61, 85 NDPS Act.



Cagers honoured
Our Sports Reporter

Ludhiana, June 17
The Punjab Basketball Association honoured the Punjab basketball team for winning the 37th National Youth Basketball Championship held at Tiruchirapalli in Tamil Nadu.

They were felicitated at a function organised by the association here on Tuesday.

In the final, Punjab team comprising six players from the Ludhiana Basketball Academy- Gaurav Deep Singh, Satnam Singh, Arjun Prasad, Loveneet Singh, Moneypal Singh and two boys from Ludhiana district- Sameer Jain and Ajay Kumar beat Chhattisgarh 64-42 to bag the title.

Rajdeep Singh Gill, former DGP, Punjab, and president of the PBA was the chief guest on the occasion. He gave away cash prize of Rs 5,000 each to the players.

Teja Singh Dhaliwal, general secretary of the PBA, along with the former international basketball players and office-bearers of the association, were present there. They congratulated the boys and their coach Dr S Subramanian.

The association distributed four hundred basket balls. A three-point competition was also organised on the occasion.

In the junior boy’s section, Gauravdeep Singh, a trainee of the Ludhiana Basketball Academy, romped home victorious by netting eight baskets in one minute. Harpreet Singh Happy from Mansa district secured the second position with seven baskets.

In the girl’s section, Harpreet Kaur of Ludhiana dropped six baskets in one minute to come out triumphant, while Sandhya also from Ludhiana secured the second place with four baskets.



Jaish stands out in losing cause
Our Sports Reporter

Ludhiana, June 17
An all-round performance by Jaish, a class V student of Sacred Heart Senior Secondary Convent School, Urban Estate, Chandigarh road branch, went in vain as Coaching Centre lost to Pankaj Club by one wicket in the 15th Chaman Lal Malhotra Cricket Cup Tournament (u-14) at MGM Public School, Dugri, today.

Jaish scored 60 runs and took four wickets, but this was not enough to steer his team to victory. Coaching Centre won the toss and decided to bat.

They were all out for 128 in 30 overs, Jaish being the top-scorer. Pankaj Club achieved the target in 28 overs, losing nine wickets.

Brief scores: Coaching Centre: 128 all out in 30 overs (Jaish 60, Rohan 3 for 14, Kartik 2 for 9, Nakul 2 for 26); Pankaj Club: 129 for 9 in 28 overs (Pulkit 43 no, Jaish 4 for 18, Harnoor 2 for 14).



Over 100 turn up for swimming trials
Our Sports Reporter

Ludhiana, June 17
At least 100 swimmers attended the trials conducted by the Ludhiana District Swimming Association at the municipal corporation swimming pool, near Rakh Bagh, here today.

The trials were conducted to select the district teams in the sub-junior and junior boys’ and girls’ sections.

Those selected would represent the district in the three-day 26th Sub-Junior and 35th Junior Punjab State Swimming Championship, beginning at Ropar tomorrow.



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