L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


People suffer as revenue officials go on leave en masse
DC intervenes, protest called off; 
officials to return to work today
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 21
Public work suffered in all revenue tehsils of the district as the revenue officials proceeded on a mass casual leave to protest against alleged ‘‘highhandedness’’ of the Deputy Commissioner here today.

The residents visited the offices after braving heavy rains in the morning only to be return disappointed as the work of registering sale deeds and wills were not taken in any of the tehsils and sub-tehsils.

The officials, however, called off their protest in the evening after holding a meeting with the Deputy Commissioner. They announced they would return to work tomorrow and withdraw their strike so that the public is not inconvenienced.

At least 22 naib tehsildars and tehsildars posted in 12 revenue tehsils and sub-tehsils of the district, including Ludhiana North, West, East and Central, Jagraon, Sudhar, Khanna, Payal, Macchiwara, Mullanpur, Koom Kalan and Samrala did not go to their offices.

The revenue officials had been protesting against Deputy Commissioner, Rahul Tewari, alleging that he “reprimanded” Naib Tehsildar, Jasbir Walia, and Tehsildar, Rajinder Oberoi, both posted in Ludhiana-West office for not being absent despite being assigned a VIP duty at Circuit House here.

The ‘‘strong words’’ used by the deputy commissioner for taking the duty non-seriously did not go down well with the revenue officials, who decided to go on protest leave. Earlier, during the day, they held a meeting and condemned him.

Later, they held a meeting with Tewari and announced to call off their strike. Tehsildar Ram Singh, an office-bearer of the revenue officials association, said the matter was sorted out amicably. ‘‘It was a family that got together to resolve it. We will return to work tomorrow,” he said.

Tewari said the officials would return to work tomorrow as he had told them that seniors often reprimand their junior colleagues if they do not perform well. So, there was no reason to go on an ego trip. ‘‘The logic finally prevailed upon them, ’’ he added.

Some who paid the price

Residents, who came to the offices braving rains from different parts of the district, had to return without getting their works done. They waited for an hour in the respective offices and on realizing that their work would not be taken up, returned.

Pritam Singh, a resident of Salem Tabri, who wanted to get his will registered with the Ludhiana East office, said he had to return without getting his work done. ‘‘This is the state of affairs here. I am visiting the office since Monday and was called again today. Even then I am not able to get my work done,’’ he rued.

Vinod Kumar, a resident of Sekhewal, said he visited the East office to get his sale deed registered. ‘‘I came here only to find that the officials were on mass casual leave. I have no option but to try my luck tomorrow. That, too, if at all, they return to work,’’ he added.

Satnam Singh of BRS Nagar, said people were sick of protests. ‘‘Something or other keeps on happening. And we have to suffer,’’ he said.

What Angered DC

The room booked for State Information Commissioner, Darbara Singh Kahlon, who visited the city to address a seminar on Monday, was shabby. This angered the Darbara Singh, who lodged a complaint with Tewari. The latter called Naib Tehsildar, Walia, and Tehsildar, Oberoi, who were assigned the job and reprimanded them in front of Kahlon. This forced them to go on mass casual leave.


Rains weigh heavy on pocket, health
Vegetables cost dear
Manav Mander
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 21
Incessant rains followed by floods in the region have upset the household budget of city residents as the prices of vegetables have gone through the roof.

With the road and rail services remaining disrupted in some parts of the region, there is less availability of vegetables in the state, leading to rise in their prices.

As vegetables in the tomato-growing belt of Haryana have been destroyed due to floods, tomatoes have become a rare commodity in the city and are being sold at Rs 60-80 per kilogram as against the normal price of Rs 15 per kilogram.

“Heavy rains have destroyed the vegetables. Price of tomatoes will remain high till the produce from Himachal and Uttaranchal arrive in August,” said Raj Kumar, a vegetable vendor.

“I prefer using tomato puree instead of raw tomatoes. I have never seen tomatoes being sold at such a high price,” said Kamaljit Kaur, a resident of Rajguru Nagar.

Similarly, the prices of onions and lady's finger have increased by Rs 5 and Rs 12 per kg, respectively. As a consequence, city residents have cut down their vegetable consumption. “I am not buying tomatoes this week as I cannot afford them,” said Ragini, a homemaker from Sarabha Nagar. She said that the increase in the prices of fuel and cooking gas has already affected their monthly budget and now the increase in the prices of vegetables has made the matters worse.

The prices of seasonal vegetables have also been affected. While one has to shell out Rs 30 extra for a kilogram of cauliflower as compared to last week, the prices of capsicum and peas have also doubled.

“I can never shell out Rs 60-80 for tomatoes. I prefer avoiding tomatoes. Onions and seasonal vegetables, too, are becoming out of our reach,” rued Sunita, a domestic help.



Water samples fail test
Anshu Seth
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 21
All the 23 water samples taken by the department of health and family welfare in the month of July have failed in the laboratory tests. Most importantly, the water samples were taken both from the slum areas and the posh localities of the city.

The department has forwarded the reports to the Ludhiana deputy commissioner.

With more gastroenteritis cases surfacing in Basti Jodhewal and adjoining areas, the number of confirmed cases has gone upto 60 in Ludhiana and the health authorities have termed the "dirty drinking water" as the main cause behind the disease.

District epidemiologist, Dr GP Mangla while reviewing the situation said that Tilak Nagar, Subhash Nagar, Mohalla Anantpura, Jain colony, areas on Tibba Road, Tajpur Road, Haibowal Khurd and New Kundan Puri are worst affected. " We have given additional duties to the medical officers who are dealing with the curative as well as the preventive aspect of the water borne disease," district epidemiologist went on to add.

More than 12 teams of doctors, pharmacists, staff nurses and other health workers are camping in the disease prone areas of the city to provided treatment to the sick.

But it is rather strange that there are 29 dispensaries of Punjab Health System Corporation in Ludhiana urban which have not been able to cater to the populace in their respective areas. The reason being, "inadequate number" of health workers and "medical officers" in comparison to the burgeoning population.

One ANM is posted against the population of 5000, whereas the ANMs posted in the city dispensarieas are catering to double/tripple the number of people.

Similary, the health department in order to atone for the vacant posts of medical officials has given additional charges of 2-3 dispensaries to a single doctor, as a result the doctors are unable to dispense quality service. The present population of Basti Jodhewal is 1.5 lac and there are just 6 Auxiliary Nursing Midwives (ANMs) to cater to the people from all age groups.

Similarly, Mata Tej Kaur Memorial Government Subsidiary Health Centre, Giaspura, which is being run in two small rooms has one Auxiliary Nurse Midwife (ANM) and an assistant at the dispensary. Against her duty to attend a population of 5,000, she is catering to the population of over 12,000.

The areas on Dabba Road, Dhandari Khurd, Jamalpur and adjoining areas are covered by Sahnewal civil hospital.



Rs 42 Lakh Robbery Case
Driver detained for questioning
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 21
In a major development in the sensational Rs 42.45 lakh lakh robbery case, which took place in the Focal Point area on Monday, the police has detained a driver of Bonn Food Industries for questioning.

The police apprehended the driver, Jasvir Singh, during the course of investigation. Jasvir, who was reportedly driving the vehicle in which the cash was kept, has a criminal record. He is learnt to be a proclaimed offender (PO) and is wanted by the Jalandhar and Hoshiarpur police in connection of a snatching case.

Though the police remained tight-lipped, sources confirmed that it was the Jasvir who gave vital details to his accomplices.

A few minutes before the robbery incident, Jasvir recharged his mobile and told his accomplice the location where the cash was kept in the car.

Sources said that a mobile shop owner provided details to the police saying that Jasvir visited his shop on Monday morning and bought a recharge coupon of Rs 20. Sources said the police was conducting raids at the hideouts of the accused.

From the very beginning, the police was suspecting the involvement of an insider behind the robbery incident and even questioned several employees of the factory unit, but all fingers were pointing towards the involvement of the driver.

Talking to The Tribune, Police Commissioner Ishwar Singh said: "We cannot say anything at this point. The police is still investigating the matter."

Recruited 2 months ago

Despite knowing about Jasvir’s criminal record, the employers recruited him two months ago. Sources said the police was also probing whether Jasvir was an accomplice of the SUV gang. The gang became a headache for the police with their repeated strikes

‘Verify antecedents of staff’

A communiqué from the office of the Commissioner of Police has indicated that lapse in verifying the antecedents of domestic help, employees and tenants have led to a rise in the crime graph. The communiqué has been issued close on the heels of the robbery incident.

The Commissioner has appealed to the residents to get antecedents of their servants, employees and tenants verified at www.ismic.org, or call at the helpline 98766-22797.



Demo of LEDs
MC still to gauge brightness of lights
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 21
The Bureau of Energy Efficiency (BEE), New Delhi -consultants for the Municipal Corporation, Ludhiana- installed energy saving lights at certain points in the city for demonstration here last evening.

A meeting was held today between visiting members from BEE and Additional Commissoner KP Brar to gauge the performance of these lights.

Giving details about the lights installed for demonstration, Brar said two members Arijit Sen Gupta and Hemant Gupta were here for the feedback. "Look wise the lights are good but as far as the brightness is concerned, the civic body has asked the team to increase the brightness of these lights. In the evening, we will see the level of brightness. The team will increase the voltage (Watts) and then we will freeze the level", Brar said.

Once the MC is satisfied, tenders inviting companies will be floated. "After consulting BEE, we will give the contract to the lowest deserving bidder in the coming few days", said Brar.

The Rs 90-crore project will not only help the MC in illuminating the city with luminous electronic devices (LED) but will also help in generating huge revenue by saving power.

According to Brar, the company that gets the contract will invest the entire money. "By installing these lights, the company will save 60 per cent of power. Today the LMC is paying a whopping amount of about Rs 30 crore on electricity bills (annually), if these lights are installed, the company will be able to save several crores in the first year itself", Brar said.



Sutlej Club not private
It’s a public authority, says info panel
Manav Mander
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 21
The Sutlej Club, which has always been claimed as a private body by its executive, is in reality a public authority. This was stated by the State Information Commission of Punjab.

The commission acknowledged the club as the public authority recently while hearing a case filed by SS Chana. He had sought an information regarding money spent on the general house meetings, its minutes and number of officials taken as its members from the club’s public information officer.

But, the latter refused to part with the information on the pretext that the club is a private body as it is a self-financed institution as application fees and subscription charges are collected from its members.

While the complainant alleged that the club is a public authority as the state government finances it. The government owns the land on which it has been constructed. The club has also been allowed its use freely as no charges are levied on it.

During the inspection of the revenue records it came into light that the government owns the land. It has also come on record that certain funds were provided by the state government for constructing the club initially. These facts leave no doubt that the state government provides substantial amount of financial assistance to the club.

The fact is that the land on which the club has been constructed belongs to the state and no rent/lease is paid by it to the government. These clearly show that the club is a public authority.

Passing orders, the commission said since the club was a public authority, it came under the preview of the Information Act and was supposed to provide the public with the information.

SS Chana alleged that the club finances were in a mess due to reckless spending by its management. “The club is incurring losses for the past several years and if this goes on there is doubt that it may not be able to sustain itself,” he added.

The club, with at least 3,200 members, evokes a lot of interest of people in the city. The elections of the club see the contesting members spending a lot of money. The entertainment programmes held by the club on different occasions also generate a very good response. The deputy commissioner is the ex-officio president of the club.



Lakkar flyover again in controversy?
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 21
The Lakkar bridge flyover, construction of which started about a decade ago and was halted on numerous occasions in-between, seems to be in trouble again with at least 800 shopkeepers of AC Market- Calibre Plaza and Bhadaur House objecting to the “faulty design” of one of its down ramp. The B and R department has once again put on hold the construction of its down ramp.

Members of the AC Market Shopkeeper Association have submitted a memorandum to authorities concerned and met Minister for Jails and Tourism Hira Singh Gabria and Trade Board Punjab vice-chairman Madal Lal Bagga on numerous occasions for carrying out necessary amendments in the design. But, the B & R department maintains that it could decide on amendments only if the designer approved them. If designs are to be changed, the civic body and the Ludhiana Improvement Trust will have to shell out more money for sharing the “extra burden.”

Confirming this, Madal Lal Bagga told The Tribune that shopkeepers would have to face lots of problems while loading and unloading their stocks due to the paucity of the space as far as the present design of the down ramp was concerned. “Besides this, the view of the market will also get spoilt. In case of emergency like fire etc, it will be difficult to enter or exit market due to narrow space left. We have asked the B and R department to make necessary amendments so that the shopkeepers could be accommodated,” added Bagga.

In charge of the project from the B and R department GS Sangha said proposed design (to accommodate shopkeepers) would be sent to the designer to checking whether the design could be changed or not. “We will send everything and wait for the final decision. It will take a couple of days to get the clear picture,” added Sangha.

One of the MC officials disclosed that the down ramp had to come down somewhere. “If designs keep on changing like this, how can work progress? In any case, Municipal Corporation will have to shell out more money. As far as the demand of the shopkeepers are concerned, they have violated building bylaws while constructing the market,” the official added.

Amendments Sought

Eight hundred shopkeepers have objected to the “faulty design” of one of its down ramp. They have even submitted a memorandum in this regard for carrying out necessary amendments in the design. They face problems while loading and unloading their stocks due to paucity of space due to the faulty design. But, the B and R department maintains that amendments can only be carried out if designer approves them. If it is done, the civic body and the Ludhiana Improvement Trust will have to shell out more money.



Punjabis’ fetish for male heirs knows no bounds
Anshu Seth
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 21
The recent case of the abduction of an infant from the city’s Deep Hospital has once again brought to the fore the quest for a “male heir" among Punjabis.

Despite being the mother of a 7-year-old daughter, Manpreet Kaur, the suspected kidnapper, went to the extent of committing a crime to have a male child. Unable to accomplish their devious plan, she and her husband, Baljit Singh, were caught by the police and a case has been registered against the duo.

The incident has not only left their family members shocked but has also brought disgrace to the entire community in Jarkhar village, the couple’s native place that until now was in the news for its "rural sports".

Dapinder Singh, the village ‘sarpanch’ told The Tribune he had visited the couple in the police station along with Baljit’s father, Tehal Singh. “Their (couple’s) families did not have any inkling of the plan hatched by Manpreet. Her father in law is so ashamed about the affair that he has become reluctant to even come to the village.”

“The family members are very respectable and broadminded like many villagers who have always given due respect and importance to the girls and women”, he added.

Manpreet feigned to be pregnant for the past nine months and kept lying on the bed on the "doctor's advice", close associates of the family stated. "She was a regular visitor to Deep Hospital in Ludhiana but she didn’t share any details of her treatment with anyone in the family, not even with her married sister who lives in the same village," said a resident of Jarkhar village.



Slum kids to be given polio drops
Special drive on July 25, 26, 27
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 21
Children between 0-5 years of age in the slums of Ludhiana urban , Koomkalan, and Sahnewal blocks will be administered polio drops, under a special pulse polio drive on July 25, 26 and 27.

Additional Deputy Commissioner Kuldip Singh today convened a meeting of the district task force in Bachat Bhawan, wherein, he called upon the officials of government departments to extend cooperation to the Department Of Health And Family Welfare for eradication of the disease.

He specifically called upon the district education official to educate the children in schools about the importance of administering polio drops to the children between 0-5 years of age.

Dr Satwant Bhalla, Civil Surgeon, Ludhiana, while speaking on the occasion said that more than 57,000 children would be given polio drops for which 2,043 teams have been formulated.



‘Avoid stoppage of buses at crossings’
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 21
Vehicular traffic jams at the important crossings in the city have become a menace for daily commuters. The incoming and outgoing buses generally stop at the unspecified stoppages near the main crossings namely Link Road - Durgri Road Crossing and the Gill Chowk flyover, Partap Chowk, Cheema Chowk, Samrala Chowk etc. to load and unload the passengers. Such long stoppages almost by all the transport services create traffic problem in the shape of jams, which further create hurdle for the movement of the local vehicular traffic relating to trade and industry and the residents of the city.

General secretary Avtar Singh and joint secretary Upkar Singh of the Chamber of Industrial and Commercial Undertakings (CICU) have urged the Police Commissioner, Ludhiana, to make necessary arrangements to avoid stoppage of buses at vulnerable crossings in the city.



Affiliation to courses
Colleges, students face PU apathy
Our Correspondent

Sahnewal, July 21
The future of thousands of students, who have been assured of granting admission to various new courses, supposed to be started in various colleges affiliated to Panjab University (PU) during the current academic session, seems to be in the dark. The position of all such colleges that had applied for the affiliation too is no better.

A number of such colleges, which had applied for the affiliation to new courses and subjects, are now at the horns of dilemmas, as there has been no intimation from the university. The last date of normal admission with late fee to these courses is July 29, after which they would be admitted only after depositing a sum of Rs 1,500 each.

Dr Tejinder Kaur, principal, Guru Nanak College for Girls, Muktsar, said the college had applied for new subjects and courses as mathematics, sociology, BCom, BBA, BSc biotechnology, MSc mathematics, MA Punjabi, etc., but the affiliation to all these courses is yet awaited.

Similarly, Dr Paramjit Kaur, principal, Khalsa College for Women, Sidhwan Khurd, expressed that the college and students are under stress due to the delay in the issuance of letter from the university.

Dr Gurdeep Sharma, principal, GGDSD College, Haryana, said the university was still waiting for NOC from the Punjab government. “Panjab University, keeping in mind the interest of the colleges and future of the students, should adopt a liberal pattern, as that followed by GNDU and Punjabi University in the case of granting the affiliations. The colleges and students are bound to suffer due to the delay on the part of the university,” he added.

According to SC Sanwalka, president, Management Federation, “Almost 90 per cent of the colleges, that wished to opt for the new courses, had applied for the affiliation before the stipulated date i.e. October 1, 2009. But a majority of the inspections, that should have otherwise been held not later than February-March, took place in May and June. Some of the members of the inspection committee submitted their reports in the first week of July but others are still pending with the committees. Till date no college has received permission or refusal to start the new courses. Thousands of students are knocking at the doors of the colleges where they wish to seek admission”.

Jaswant Singh Gill, secretary, Management Federation, “The colleges have spent lacks of rupees for creating new infrastructure, including classrooms, laboratories, library books, furniture, etc. In most of the cases, staff has also been recruited in compliance with the verbal instructions of the inspection committee. The university has not so far conveyed any deficiency to the colleges, which have requested for extension of the affiliation. The Punjab and Haryana High Court had directed the universities and colleges to complete all formalities before the start of new academic session i.e. May 31 of every year. Despite the fact that most of the colleges having completed all formalities are still not in a position to say a final yes to the admission seekers.”

Meanwhile, the Registrar, Panjab University, when contacted, said they were waiting for the no objection certificate from the government and that the colleges should be intimated as soon as they get it. Regarding the nearing of the last date of the admission, he said the university could check if the last date could be extended.

Almost 90 per cent of the colleges, that wished to opt for the new courses, had applied for the affiliation before the stipulated date i.e. October 1, 2009. But a majority of the inspections, that should have otherwise been held not later than February-March, took place in May and June. Some of the members of the inspection committee submitted their reports in the first week of July but others are still pending with the committees. Till date no college has received permission or refusal to start the new course

— SC Sanwalka, president, Management Federation



Schools not care two hoots to routine health check ups
Mahesh Sharma

Mandi Ahmedgarh, July 21
Notwithstanding the guidelines by higher authorities in the education department, a routine health check-up of students and sealing of samples of food prepared under the midday meal scheme is non-existent in schools.

As clerical work in connection with the mandatory monthly health check ups of all students is done religiously by almost all teachers, respective district education officials do not provide the list of schools, which were not visited by medical officials during a particular month.

Even if claims made by the authorities at the local primary health centre regarding the health check up of some schools on every Friday is believed to be true, only four out of more than 12 schools falling under the jurisdiction of the health centre could be visited in a month.

Investigations revealed that the ideal health check ups of the students studying in the state-run schools had been missing allegedly due to the lack of coordination among officials of the education and health department at various levels.

Though health registers and health cards maintained at various schools reflect that the health check ups were being conducted according to the norms and directions, the actual story was entirely different.

If at all some doctor or a member of paramedical staff examined the students of a school, any abnormality or nutritional deficiency observed was rarely conveyed to his or her parents.

At majority of the schools situated in the block, identity of nodal officials nominated by the department of school education was not communicated to either students or their parents.

Lapses were observed at the district level too. Though all district education officials are supposed to invariably attend the monthly meetings of the health officials, the interaction among the education officials and Civil Surgeons is almost phenomenal. It is during this meeting that the DEO is supposed to inform his counterpart in the health department about discrepancy in the routine check ups.

None of the schools could affirm the dates on which food samples were taken by health department teams during the past months. No school was ever warned to be careful during the preparation of meals for the students.

While the authorities at various schools maintained that the health check ups were conducted according to the norms, the officials at the primary health centre maintained that each school was visited by doctors at least twice a year. Outpatient registers of various doctors posted here did not substantiate the claims made by the schools authorities regarding the monthly health check ups at their schools.

Lack of coordination

Investigations revealed that the ideal health check ups of students studying in state-run schools had been missing allegedly due to a lack of coordination among officials of the education and health department at various levels. Though health registers and health cards maintained at various schools reflect that the health check ups were being conducted according to the norms and directions, the actual story is entirely different

Directions of education dept officials

l The department of school education is to identify and nominate a nodal official for organising monthly camps.

l Health registers are to be maintained in all schools.

l Health cards are to be maintained in all schools and certain information needs to be filled up and maintained by school teachers.

l A certificate needs to be given by the school teachers certifying whether or not medical officials have visited the school and conducted the health check up.

l DEOs are supposed to invariably attend the monthly meeting of the Civil Surgeons so that matters concerning both departments are discussed and resolved or finalised at the district level



Midday Meal Scheme
Cooks get salaries after six months
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 21
Over 1,500 cooks, appointed to make midday meal at several government schools of the district, were finally given their salaries after a long wait of nearly six months.

These cooks were awaiting their dues since January. The Education Department woke up from their slumber following reports that the cooks had stopped making meals to mark their protest.

It is learnt that the salaries were disbursed following the orders of the Director-General, Schools Education, Punjab, Krishan Kumar.

He issued letters to the Sarv Sikhaya Abhiyan officials a week ago for crediting the cooks’ salaries in their respective accounts.

The District Education Officer (DEO-primary), Ludhiana, Hansa Singh, confirmed the development and stated Rs 6,000 each had been credited into the accounts of 1,500 midday meal cooks working in 1,017 primary and 384 middle government schools falling in the district. These cooks, majority of them being women, were facing acute financial crunch after the Education Department held back their salaries.

Visibly relieved after receiving the pending dues, Krishna Devi, who cooks midday meal at a primary school said, "It was getting difficult to make both ends meet. We borrowed money from teachers and bought essential commodities on credit."

A cook on the condition of anonymity said, "What an irony, we make food to quench the hunger of hundred of students, but our own children were forced to go without food."

While ruing over the lackadaisical attitude of the department, a government school teacher said the cooks were working on a meagre salary of Rs 1,000, yet the department took six months to make the payments.



Odd school timings
Class XII (non-med) students face inconvenience
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 21
Odd school timings are posing a problem for Class XII (non-medical) students of Government Senior Secondary Model School located in PAU. The students complained that the school authorities were holding classes at 12 in the afternoon due to which the students were facing a lot of inconvenience.

“It is difficult to study during afternoon, as the classrooms remain hot and most of the time there is no electricity due to the scheduled power cut. We have requested the school authorities to change the time, but nothing has been done so far,” said the students.

Meanwhile, sources in the school said the students were making excuses, as they were finding it difficult to attend tuitions after the school. When contacted, school principal said, “We have to look at the common interest of the students. We cannot change the curriculum for the convenience of a few students. Further during the time of the admission, the students were aware that their classes would be held in the afternoon. There is no point in complaining now, it would be better if they concentrate on their studies.”



Kindergarten source of traffic chaos
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 21
The kindergarten located on the Satpal Mittal road near Sarabha Nagar has become a source of traffic chaos.

The kindergarten caters to the children of rich socialites. These people do not hesitate to park their vehicles in the middle of the road to drop their children.

Due to the erratic parking, the road remains chockablock and poses inconvenience to commuters.

According to residents of the locality, the traffic jam has become a common sight in this area and several requests to organise the parking have fallen on the deaf ears of the school authorities.



Contractual workers to be affected in 31 FCI depots

Ludhiana, July 21
The Ministry of Labour has prohibited implementation of exploitative contract labour system in as many as 60 depots of FCI of which 31 depots pertain to Punjab Region. This action of the government gave impetus to achievement of social justice by protecting the interest of unorganised labour. It was expected that corporation would also adopt the same policy with regard to the implementation of such a notification by absorbing erstwhile contract labourers in these notified depots instead of rendering them employed as was done where similar notifications prohibiting employment of contract labour were issued during the years 1985 and 1991.

The Food Corporation of India Workers’ Union in a press note issued here stated that the management had deviated from its past policy and now decided to operate these notified depots not by absorbing the existing contract labourers but by transferring workers from other depots.

GS Jena, general secretary of the union, said that the present policy of the corporation of operating the notified depots by transferring the already deficient direct payment system (DPS) workers from other depots and rendering mass unemployment of concerned contract labourers was anti-labour and would create widespread unrest among workers. — TNS



Contaminated Water 10 connections cut
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 21
The O and M department of the Municipal Corporation today cut nearly 10 water connections which was getting mixed with the potable water in New Subhash Nagar. From this particular area, the health authorities recently reported nearly 10 to 15 cases of gastroenteritis.

Talking to The Tribune, executive engineer of the O and M cell, Kamlesh Bansal, said in the street No. 5/3 of New Subhash Nagar, water pipes were getting mixed with sewerage pipes and residents, unaware of getting contaminated water used to consume it.

“They had joined their own pipes by hiring private plumbers so we cut the connections, otherwise things would have been worst,” said Bansal.

Mayor Hakam Singh Gyaspura, MP Sharanjit Singh Dhillon and other senior officials visited this area.



Style rage: Look jazzy with jute handbags
Manav Mander
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 21
Handbags have always been one of the most important accessories in a woman’s wardrobe. They not only need to be useful but trendy as well. Various kinds of fashion accessories are available in markets these days to cater to the growing demands of the women. These come in leather, canvas, nylon, denim and many other varieties. However, one of the accessories that is not only stylish but eco-friendly, too, is none other than the jute bags.

Available in varied styles, designs, shapes, colours and sizes, jute handbags are getting very popular these days. The women are immediately lured into purchasing these purses due to their simplicity, bright and vibrant colours. These purses are a unique mix of creativity and utility.

Beautifully designed purses are decorated with embroideries combined with the lace, beads, ribbons and the sequins.

“Jute gears are quite popular among teenage girls. College girls often fall for the jute, as they are simple yet so stylish. The girls who don’t want to carry flashy and gaudy attires can always go for these bags that are aesthetically designed and make a perfect style statement,” said Suresh at a bag store in Ghumar Mandi.

Earlier jute was mostly used for making gunny bags. However, over the years jute has effectively been used for making creative and beautiful pieces. Jute bags are very eco-friendly, spacious and durable. All over the world, these bags are acknowledged for their high tensile strength, long durability and heat resistance properties.

“Jute bags are a latest rage among the fashion-conscious people. Jute purses include clutch bags that are small and mostly meant for evening outings. Jute gears also include shopping, totes and even party bags,” said Tisca, a college student.

Citing another reason for carrying jute bags Prabhleen, pursuing her interior designing course, added, “Jute bags often comes with wooden handles that look stylish These have become the latest trend that is going to last for long. Jute bags enhance ones personality as it is quite attractive to flaunt before others.”

Popular ones

l Jute handbags sequined, beaded, embroidered or embellished with mirror work.

l Beach bags are designed to look elegant and snazzy.

l Jute shopping bags can carry heavy loads; are spacious and eco-friendly.

l Sling bags in various designs and patterns are produced in abundance by manufacturers and exporters.

l Jute wine bottle bags are sold in various designs, sizes.



PAU Notes
Office-bearers elected

LUDHIANA: Office-bearers of the Indian Society for Agricultural Development and Policy (ISADP) were elected after a meeting held at PAU recently. The office-bearers include Dr SS Johl, Dr DS Sidhu, Dr SS Grewal, Dr Karam Singh, Dr Joginder Singh, Dr AS Joshi and Dr RS Sidhu, who were elected as patrons. Dr MS Sidhu has been elected as president, while Dr JS Sidhu, Dr HS Dhaliwal, Dr Sukhpal Singh and Dr PK Dhindsa were elected as vice-presidents. Dr SS Chahal and Dr DK Grover were elected on the post of general secretary and joint secretary, respectively. In addition, nine councillors were also elected.

Tree plantation drive

Continuing the drive for tree plantation on the campus, the College of Agricultural Engineering and Technology held a “Go green and grow” programme near the college premises. Dr Manjit Singh Kang, Vice-Chancellor, planted a sapling of fishtail palm to initiate this programme. He described tree plantation as a benevolent act and said it was a positive sign that different colleges and departments of PAU were undertaking the tree plantation drive to make the campus clean and green. — TNS



Karate Meet
GMT students excel
Our Sports Reporter

Ludhiana, July 21
Students of GMT Public School, Jalandhar bypass branch, brought fame to their school by winning medals in the Aashiara Karate Championship held at the Balmiki Bhawan, Jamalpur, here on Sunday.

Three students from the school, namely Rajveer Singh, Aryan and Jassipal, won a gold medal each, while Tanish, Naveen Pal, Shivam Verma, Dhanajay and Jatin bagged silver medals.

Jatin Gaba, Gautam, Raghav and Yashkaran too finished among medal winners, clinching a bronze medal each. School directors KS Thind and JS Thind, along with principal Amarjit Dhaliwal congratulated the students and their coach Pankaj Sahni on their achievement.



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