L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


MC loses revenue to corruption
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, October 27
The municipal corporation’s revenues during the festival season have fallen sharply due to corrupt employees who, in connivance with shopkeepers and street vendors, pocket the money instead of depositing it with the civic body.

According to sources, though the MC could have easily earned about ` 20-22 lakh during this season the amount collected was less than ` 10-12 lakh. Many inspectors and officials of the ‘tehbazaari’ wing, who are hand-in-glove with shopkeepers, issue slips for lesser space to the latter while vendors are allowed to occupy virtually as much space as they want.

Starting from Dussehra to Karva Chauth and then Diwali, MC officials allow shopkeepers to extend their counters on the roadside. In lieu to extensions, the shopkeepers and street vendors are charged by the corporation. The sources added inspectors cut slips for lesser space while shopkeepers and vendors occupy more public land and grease the palms of the inspectors.

An official, requesting anonymity, disclosed: "In every market and on all major streets either the shopkeepers have extended their counters or they charge from vendors for putting latter's stalls in front of their shops/showrooms. For about 20 days these stalls are put up in the city. The authorities charge from the shops or vendors but amount is much less than what is expected. If inspectors do not put money into their pockets, the MC could earn a huge amount of income. Secondly, many of

these vendors have not paid a single penny to the MC officials because they are smart enough to make the inspectors happy".

Starting from interior parts of city, stalls are put up in all the leading markets in city including Sarabha Nagar, BRS Nagar, Model Town, Dugri, Civil Lines, Dandi Swami, near Aggar Nagar, Field Ganj and Jawahar Nagar Camp during the festive season. Many of these vendors occupy more land but pay much less for it.

Pritam Singh, a vendor at Jawahar Nagar Camp, said: "I’ve occupied about 12 feet of a street but the slip issued shows less space. If I give even a small amount of money to the MC inspector my problem is solved. This is the time when we can make some more money”.

Meanwhile, assistant commissioner BK Gupta, who heads the MC’s ‘tehbazaari’ wing, said the civic body had given “special” permission to shopkeepers and street vendors to put up their stalls for which they were being duly charged.

"Rs 5 per square feet per day is charged from those putting up stalls during the festival season. The shopkeeper associations come-along with the superintendents to provide details of all the stalls in particular area", Gupta added.

But gets tough on reckless drivers
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, October 27
Having decided to act tough against those driving MC vehicles recklessly, commissioner AK Sinha asked officials to conduct surprise checks on vehicles plying on the streets in various areas of the city today. The vehicles, including tippers, JCB machines and garbage trucks were stopped and their drivers asked to produce valid documents.

According to sources, one of the officials asked a man in a garbage truck that lifting refuse on Hambran Road to show his vehicle documents. When he failed to do so the official took him to police station no 4 and briefed Sinha about the incident.

Despite several warnings drivers of MC vehicles continue to drive rashly on roads. During the past few months garbage trucks have claimed five lives in the city. These incidents have brought disrepute to the civic body and the issue was raised at its recent general house meeting.

It has been alleged that drivers of MC vehicles have been hiring the services of those who neither have a valid driver’s licence nor are experienced to drive a heavy vehicle.


CMCH budges, operates upon woman again
Team of doctors, nursing staff suspended following protest
Anshu Seth
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, October 27
Renu Aggarwal, who had come to the Christian Medical College and Hospital (CMCH) yesterday with a scissor in her abdomen, left accidentally by the team, which operated upon her during first surgery, was once again operated upon today.

Following a protest staged by the family and friends of Renu Aggarwal, the hospital authorities had suspended the team of doctors and nursing staff involved in the operation.

Renu, a resident of Hoshiarpur, underwent surgery for “ectopic pregnancy” at CMCH on October 3 and remained in the post-operative care for 15 days. Thereafter, she was declared fit and discharged from the hospital.

But she was again admitted to the hospital yesterday with acute pain in her abdomen. Her X-Ray reveled the presence of a “scissor” in her abdomen.

Unhappy over the attitude of the hospital authorities, Renu’s husband Bhanu Aggarwal said: “I am happy that my wife was operated upon yesterday and is recuperating at the hospital. But the attitude of the authorities disappoints me. I was subjected to humiliation and my wife was left suffering for hours after I refused to give the X-Ray/scan reports to the hospital staff.”

Bhanu also revealed that he got hold of the reports by chance. “The doctors were trying to conceal the facts of the X-Ray. They told me about the possibility of my wife having been diagnosed

with dengue and swelling in the bladder. It was shocking to see the missing professionalism and humanity even in the reputed doctors and nursing staff,” he added. The hospital authorities have promised free of cost “treatment” to Renu. But they have not returned Rs 10,000 that I had deposited soon after my wife’s re-admission in CMCH. Despite repeated attempts, the CMCH authorities were not available for comments.



DTO asked to retrieve missing tax records
Anshu Seth
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, October 27
Pointing to the failure of the city’s district transport office to collect ` 3.6 crore in outstanding taxes during the period from 2007 to 2009, a Punjab government audit and inspection team has sought records under various categories that it found were missing in the office.

The team, led by deputy director (pensions) SP Jindal from the office of the treasury & accounts director of the finance department, conducted a special audit of the DTO in January 2010. The team has categorically specified the “missing” amount of ` 42,53,838 that had to be charged as motor vehicle tax for minibuses. The audit officials had asked the district transport officer to update the office’s ledgers and present them for the audit.

Interestingly, school bus operators have also managed to evade motor vehicle tax as has been mentioned in the team’s audit report, which showed an amount of ` 37,38,584 "overdue” towards some school buses.

The audit report also points to the pending amount of ` 1,81,58,386 towards the owners of defunct companies who had failed to pay taxes over a long period.

However, the audit team’s most significant revelation is the "liberties" taken by the district transport officer in extending tax exemptions to some bus companies in violation of section 8 of the Motor Vehicles Act, 1925.

After receiving complaints about the alleged corruption in the DTO, Rohit Sabharwal, who heads an NGO, Anti-Corruption & Crime Investigation Cell, procured the above information under the Right To Information Act.

Meanwhile, DTO Ashwani Kumar claimed “90 per cent” of the total amount of pending taxes had already been recovered. "We’ve recovered the overdue motor vehicle tax from almost all school buses, maxi cabs and minibuses. Also, the deputy commissioner has sent lists of defunct firms to ‘tehsildars’ of the respective areas so as to locate them and recover taxes under the Land Revenue Act", he added.



Fake Bill Scam
ETO hit by auto; foul play alleged
Manav Mander
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, October 27
After the death of a whistleblower clerk of the multi-crore rupees “bogus firm” scam, Jaswinderpal Singh and subsequently of an inspector of the department, who also died in a road accident, Excise Taxation Officer (ETO), Shashi Bushan Sharma was today hit by an auto-rickshaw amidst allegations that he was the next target of the bogus-billing mafia.

Sharma was hit while he was going to his office at around 9 am today. Accident took place near Durga Mata Mandir. Sharma was discharged from the hospital after first aid. Employees of

the excise and taxation department are fearful as Sharma is handling a case of one of the bogus firms, which is involved in a fake billing scam worth Rs 4,000 crore.

A case has been registered at Division No 2 police station in this regard. Suspecting foul play in the incident, assistant excise and taxation commissioner Rishipal said: “It is for the second time that an official, who was handling the case, met with an accident. Foul play is suspected but nothing concrete can be said unless the case is investigated”.

Only in August Jaswinderpal working as a clerk with the department, was hit by a speeding tractor-trolley coming from behind near Sudhar. He sustained severe injuries on the head was rushed to the hospital in a critical condition but died. He along with his wife was going on morning walk when this accident took place.

There were some unanswered questions in Jaswinder’s case that led to rising of eyebrows. The stretch where the incident occurred was not thickly populated and adequate space was available for vehicles to maneuver. Eyebrows have been raised as to how a man who was walking on the side of the road was “accidentally hit.” The tractor-trolley, which reportedly knocked Jatinderpal down did not bear a registration number plate and the driver fled away after the accident, which - many say - also indicates foul play. Jatinderpal had reportedly drawn the wrath of a few transport firms for uncovering the scam. The firms were allegedly evading taxes by submitting fake invoices.

Three incidents in two months.

After Jaswinder’s death in an accident in August, an inspector of the same department, Jagdish Singh, also died in a road accident on October 2. “This cannot be a coincidence. They can eliminate anybody. Within two months, two persons have died and one has been injured. You never know, I might be the next target,” said Rishipal.



Talent search touches parents on the raw
For them, boy and girl singing together is ‘indecent’
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, October 27
The raw talent search campaign in schools launched by the education department has come a cropper as parents of girl students, especially living in villages, are objecting to duet songs and not allowing their daughters to sing with their male classmates.

The education department had planned a school-level duet song competition for students of government schools across the district. The motive behind organising the competition was to explore the raw talent and break the gender barrier. District education officers were told to appoint a guiding and counselling head to rely to the queries of parents of the participating students.

However, the idea of holding a duet song competition did not go well with parents of girl students. Women and elderly villagers across the district are irked by the move of the education department. “It has opened a Pandora's box for us. Parents came with complaints and even threaten us not to hold such competitions in schools,” said a teacher requesting anonymity.

The competition was to be organised for the students of middle and higher secondary classes. Parents of girl students urged the school

authorities to organise a solo song competition, but the teachers expressed their helplessness as the orders to hold duet song competition were issued from the office of the Director General School Education (DGSE).

Teachers of senior secondary schools in villages rue that the order has jeopardised the education process in schools. They said the villagers had started sending their daughters to school after much persuasion, but the recent orders had left the parents annoyed.

The girl students who expressed their interest in participating in the competition were stopped by their parents even to attend schools, they said.

Santokh Singh, district head, guidance and counselling, confirmed the development. He said, “Though we faced problems, but we have managed to convince some parents. People still object when a boy and a girl sing together. For them, it’s indecent. We have managed to break this age-old practice to an extent. Soon, we are going to organise a district-level competition of the selected group of boys and girls for 
the national-level singing competition.”

‘Not the right age’

Parents are of the view that such competitions brings boys and girls closer. This, they say, is not the right age for them to get into a relationship as it leads to social problems.



MC ‘legalises’ encroachments
Road rage, serpentine queues of vehicles common
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, October 27
The Municipal Corporation by allowing vendors to extend their counters due to festivals has legalized encroachments for the time being. This has further aggravated the problem of traffic congestion in the city. Road rage, banging of vehicles and serpentine queues can be witnessed during peak hours on all major roads due to limited space left for commuters.

All roads in Chaura Bazaar, near Lakshmi theatre, Civil Lines, Dandi Swami Chowk, Model Town market, Sarabha Nagar market, Pakhowal road, Ghumar Mandi are flooded with vehicles. The traffic virtually comes to standstill due to huge rush. Though numerous roads have been made one-way, still the density of vehicles is such that even cops find it difficult to regulate the traffic.

Roopinder Singh (name changed), a traffic cop, who has been stationed near the Mata Rani Chowk, said more cops were needed to regulate the traffic, especially in the interior parts of the city. “All kinds of vehicles like auto-rickshaws, two-wheelers, cars, bullock or horse carts bang into each other these days. We are helpless when it comes to regulating the traffic. The commuters refuse to listen to us at times and flout the rules conveniently. Many of them misbehave even with us. Still, we are doing our duty in best possible manner,” he added.

Due to extended counters outside the shops, the situation on congested roads has further worsened. “The shopkeepers and vendors have put up their stalls on the public lanes. It becomes impossible to pass through five-to-six foot lane in the congested areas like Field Ganj and Chaura Bazaar. Keeping in mind the huge rush during festivals, traffic regulation should be strictly enforced,” said Gurbachan Singh, a shopkeeper at Field Ganj.

Police Commissioner Ishwar Singh said the department in association with the Municipal authorities had deployed traffic cops on congested roads to keep the traffic moving. Traffic problem will get eased once 12 modern lights are installed on major roads. “At least 200 traffic marshals have recently been trained for regulating the traffic in the city. The situation becomes chaotic at times due to the density of vehicles,” he added.



Fee Hike
Students of Gujranwala college go on strike
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, October 27
Students of Gujranwala Guru Nanak Khalsa College, Civil Lines, went on strike against fee hike of all the courses by the management here today.

The students alleged though PTU and PU too had increased the fee of several courses, but the management had allegedly doubled the fee structure, which was much more than fee increased by both the universities.

The students of BBA, BCA, BSc IT etc went on strike in the morning and no classes were conducted. Pritpal Singh, one of the students pursuing journalism, said that it had become difficult for poor and needy students to continue with studies under such circumstances. Many meritorious students were paying fees from their own pockets and they were doing part-time jobs. "This is absolutely unjustified. The increase is between Rs 2,000 and 2,500. Students coming from middle-class families can not bear this burden", he said.

GGNKC vice-principal Manjeet Singh Chabra said that fees was increased as per the PU and PTU guidelines. He said one of the representatives of student union was called and shown the letter of fee hike. "Still the students kept on raising slogans against the institute. We can understand their helplessness too but we are bound. Still applications of needy, meritorious have been invited so that that they get a fee waiver. We have kept a meeting on November 8 on this issue", said Chabra.



Inter-Zonal Youth Festival
Punjabiat comes alive on concluding day
Our Correspondent

Doraha, October 27
Giddha, the famous folk dance of Punjab, along with exquisite group folk dances, stole the show along with theatrical items, music and skits on the last day of the Inter-Zonal Youth and /Heritage Festival, organised at Dr Ishwar Singh Memorial Hall of Guru Nanak National College, Doraha.

The chief guest for the morning session, Dr SP Singh, former, Vice-Chancellor, Guru Nanak Dev University, Amritsar, congratulated the management, principal, staff and the students for organising this cultural extravaganza.

The results of various items are as under:

Drama: I (DAV College, sec-10, Chandigarh)- 1, C (SD College for

Women, Moga) - 2, D (Arya College for Women, Ludhiana) - 3

(Individual):- Gaurav Raheja (DAV college, Sec-10, Chandigarh) -1,

Vivek Rana (DAV College, Sec-10, Chandigarh), Arshad Iqbal (DAV

College, Sec-10, Chandigarh) - 2, Pallvi Saluja (Arya College for

Women, Ludhiana) - 3

Histrionics: Amarvir Kaur (G.H.G. Khalsa College, Gurusar Sadhar) -

1, Ramandeep Kaur (Ramgarhia Girls College, Ludhiana) - 2, Jaspreet

Singh (Muktisar Institute of Higher Education., Muktisar) - 3

Indian orchestra: G (Ramgarhia Girls College, Ludhiana) - 1, D

(G.N.N. College, Doraha) - 2,

C (Dev Samaj College for Women, Ferozepur City) - 3

(Individual):- Gian Singh (G.N.N. College, Doraha) - 1, Neha

(P.G.G.C.G., Sec-11, Chandigarh)-2, Gurpreet Kaur (P.G.G.C.G., Sec-11, Chandigarh) - 3

Group folk orchestra: L (G.G.D.S.D. College, Harina) -1, K

(S.G.H.R.S. College for Women, Chabbewal) - 2, J (G.G.S. Khalsa

College for Women, Jhar Sahib) - 3

(Individual):- Jagdeep Singh (G.G.D.S.D. College, Harina) - 1,

Poornima (S.G.H.R.S. College for Women, Chabbewal) - 2, Kamaldeep Kaur (G.G.D.S.D. College, Harina) - 3

Folk instruments: Jaswant Singh(P.G.G.C.sec-11, Chandigarh) -1,

Jagsir Singh (G.N.N. College, Doraha) - 2, Jyoti Sarup Kaur (BAM

Khalsa College, Garhshankar), Gurdial Singh - 3

Collage making: Shiwani Singla (Govt. College of Education, Sec-20,

Chandigarh) - 1, Parbhati (P.G. Govt. College for Girls, Sec-11,

Chandigarh) - 2, Gurmeet Singh (L.L.R. D.A.V. College, Jagraon) - 3

Clay modelling: Inder Jyoti (Govt. College for Women, Ludhiana) - 1,

Raj Kumar (Govt. College of Arts, Sec-10, Chandigarh) - 2, Jaswinder

Kaur (Khalsa College for Women, Sidhwan Khurd) - 3

Poster making: Rupali Bhagat (Govt. College, Hoshiarpur) - 1,

Kamaljeet Kaur (Govt. College of Arts, Sec-10, Chandigarh) - 2, Neha

(S.C.D. Govt. College, Ludhiana) - 3

Cartooning:- Shivin Mittal (Govt. College of Arts, Sec-10, Chandigarh)

- 1, Gagan Dhiman (B.A.M. Khalsa College, Garhshankar) - 2, Amanjot

Kaur (Govt. College, Hoshiarpur) - 3

On the spot painting: Simrjit Kaur (Govt. College, Hoshiarpur) - 1,

Jaswinder Singh (G.H.G. Khalsa College, Gurusar, Sadhar) - 2, Nish

Gupta (Khalsa College for Women, Civil Lines, Ludhiana) - 3

Still life drawing: Bhupinder Singh (Govt. College of Arts, sec-10,

Chandigarh) - 1, Navjot Kaur (Guru Nanak Girls College, Model Town,

Ludhiana) - 2, Gursimran Kaur (D.A.V. College of Education, Abohar) -3

Rangoli: Ritika Kamboj (Panjab University Campus) - 1, Karandeep Kaur

(G.N.K.College for Women, Gujarkhan Campus, Ludhiana) - 2, Sunaina

(B.S.H.K.College for Women, Kala Tibba, Abohar) -3.



‘Youths must be inspired to join culture sports’
Ashok Kaura

Phillaur, October 27
"Rural folks of Punjab are drifting away from the culture sports day by day and a large number of rural youth is indulging in drugs. Concerted efforts will have to be made to encourage and inspire the rural youth into culture sports. Initiatives should be taken to organise seminars against drug menace and in favour of culture sports throughout the state", Dr Davinder Singh Chhina, Director of the Punjab Cultural Promotion Council (PCPC), said at an international folk ensemble, this evening.

Chhina and the PCPC team honoured international folk artistes and students here, who had represented Punjab under the banner of Punjab Cultural Promotion Council, in one of the biggest world folk festivals in South Korea recently.

Among those who were honoured on this occasion include Verleen Kaur, Krishan Kumar Jassa, Talwinder Singh, Mandeep Singh - Gatka Artist, Jaspreet Singh Bablu, Nitish Kumar and others. International Sufi singer Dev Dildar and his talented son Chetan Dildar regaled the audience with traditional folk singing. Dev Dildar congratulated PCPC team international for its world-wide efforts in the propagation of rich folk traditions of the state in record number of 86 world folk festivals. Professor Balwinder Pal Singh, RS Sohal, Sarabjeet Singh Chhina, Sukhdev Singh Rana, national awardee, Dr. Sarabjeet Kaur Sohal, national awardee, also congratulated the PCPC team for its grand participation in the South Korean Folk Festival.

Chhina announced that an 11- member european delegation would visit and explore the heritage of Punjab in the first week of November on the invitation of the Punjab Cultural Promotion Council. Prominent personalities who had brought laurels to Punjab in the field of education, culture, sports, etc. would be honoured with Virasat Awards 2010 in these international events. The PCPC also launched its website www.punjabcpc.org and asked the talented youths of Punjab to join the Punjab Cultural Promotion Council, on Facebook.



Security beefed up ahead of Diwali
Our Correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh, October 27
The police has beefed up security in and around the town and its surrounding areas in the wake of Diwali celebrations. Specially constituted anti-sabotage teams have been directed to enhance vigil in front of the religious places besides undertaking combing operations to weed out strangers and anti-social elements who might sneak into the area under the garb of tourists.

It has also stepped up the night vigil, installed special checkpoints and intensified patrolling throughout the area falling under the Ludhiana (city), Ludhiana (Rural), Khanna and the Sangrur police districts. The cops along with fire department and health officials have been asked to remain on their toes till the end of this festive season.

Circle officers at Amargarh, Payal, Raikot, Dakha and Jagraon have been directed to enhance vigil in and around religious places, educational institutes and busy markets.

Keeping in view increase in the number of terrorist activities during the festival season over the past a few years, the police personnel have been deployed in large numbers in and around religious places to counter the terrorists’ threat to target the crowded places.

J S Sidhu, additional deputy police commissioner, said rank and file in the department had been directed to ensure the safety and security of the residents of localities falling under their respective jurisdiction.

The decision to beef up the security was taken during a meeting chaired by Commissioner of Police Ishwar Singh. He had directed the police officials to deal strictly with organised perpetrators of the crime.



Riot victims threaten protest
Kuldip Bhatia

Ludhiana, October 27
Charging the Greater Ludhiana Area Development Authority (GLADA) with irregularities in the allotment of residential flats to 1984 riot affected families, the Ludhiana Sikh Migrants’ Welfare Board has threatened to launch a peaceful protest if the process of allotment of flats to all the deserving riot victims was not completed by November 15.

Presiding over an executive committee meeting of the body here today, chairman of the board Kartar Singh Patna said a draw of lots was conducted by GLADA on October 12 for the allotment of 128 LIG and 172 MIG flats to the riot affected families. “The authorities had put up a public notice saying that the allotment letters and the possession of flats will be given to the beneficiaries within 10 days. However, GLADA has failed to do so.”

The meeting further noted with concern that 246 EWS flats, meant to be provided to the poor free of cost, had been forcibly allotted to 246 eligible riot affected families, who had refused to accept the allotment of a lower category flats than to which they were entitled.

"Information to this effect has been given in writing to the Deputy Commissioner and the Chief Administrator of GLADA. The authorities had assured to give another chance to at least 200 applicants through yet another draw of lots for allotment of MIG flats," Patna said.

The meeting urged the GLADA authorities and district administration to hold the draw of lots within the next 15 days and also take necessary steps to provide residential flats to nearly 1,000 eligible riot victims from out of available flats with the Housing Board, Ludhiana Improvement Trust, Markfed and GLADA as per the directions of the Punjab and Haryana High Court.

In case justice was not dispensed to the riot affected families within stipulated period, they will not only resort to peaceful protest at GLADA headquarters but will also file a contempt petition against the nodal agency in the High Court for failure to carry out the court orders, Patna added.



Govt employees protest, seek release of arrears
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, October 27
Led by activists of the Punjab Subordinate Services Federation (PSSF), Class III, IV and contractual employees of various government departments staged a dharna at the office of the Deputy Commissioner against non-fulfilment of their demands.

Addressing the protesters, Gurmel Singh Melday, district president of the PSSF lambasted the state government for its failure to pay arrears of 43 months to employees. Due to dilly-dally attitude of the government on the pretext of financial crunch, there was widespread resentment among government employees, he said.

The union leaders also called for a comprehensive policy for regularisation of ad hoc employees in urban local bodies, nagar panchayats, departments of excise and taxation, revenue, education, health, zila parishads, forest, data entry operators in suvidha centres, other departments and contractual workers.

The protesters demanded promotion to eligible Class IV employees and enhancement of minimum wages of ASHA workers to Rs 6,200 per month.



‘Bogus firms to face action’
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, October 27
Turning down the demand of traders that FIRs should not be registered against bogus firms, chairman of the Punjab Traders Board ND Ratti said the act was punishable and the offenders would not be speared.

A delegation of traders that called on Ratti today said that instead of registering FIRs against bogus firms, the authorities should impose heavy penalties on offenders. “The offenders will not be let off by just paying penalty as bogus billing leads to loss of state exchequer,” said Ratti.

The delegation also urged the authorities to collect tax outside the station and to check from where the consignment was coming and where was it being transported to.

"There is no such provision and the traders have to follow the old practice. To curb the menace of peti mafia, the department has launched a special drive. Anybody taking help of the peti mafia will not be spared," said DETC Parampal Singh

Ratti said all the pending VAT refunds would be released at the earliest. The DETC said from now onwards, 75 per cent of VAT refunds would be given on the basis of monthly returns.



100-yr-old tree damaged
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, October 27
A 100-year-old tree on the college road was sacrificed for the commercial gains as an unidentified person poured acid in its roots today morning.

The fumes emerging from the roots of the tree caught the attention of the nearby shopkeepers, who immediately reached the site and were shocked to see the void in the tree's centre filled with acid.

The owner of a commercial establishment on the college road complained that the tree was an obstruction for the upcoming commercial complex, thus pouring acid in its root was the safest way to get rid of it.

“It’s unfortunate that even the educated and aware people of the society are insensitive to the environmental issues,” said a shopkeeper of the area.

The matter has been brought to the notice of the Ludhiana Municipal Corporation, but no action has been initiated against any individual or establishment so far.



Raids on courier company
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, October 27
The mobile wing of the Excise and Taxation Department today conducted a raid on a courier company, Karan Couriers, and impounded 80 parcels. The godown of the courier company was also sealed.

“The parcels were coming from outside the state without genuine documents. After proper verification of the goods, penalty will be decided," said Tejbir Singh Sidhu, Assistant Excise and Taxation Commissioner.



Congress celebrates Capt’s nomination
Kuldip Bhatia

Ludhiana, October 27
Congress activists celebrated the nomination of former chief minister Captain Amarinder Singh as the president of Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee (PPCC) by the party high command.

Sweets were distributed at several places in the city as party workers danced to the beats of drums while some went a step ahead to celebrate the occasion by illuminating their houses.

Led by former District Congress Committee president Krishan Kumar Bawa, party workers distributed sweets, burst crackers and organised "deepmala" in Rajguru Nagar locality.

Bawa and former Punjab minister Malkiat Singh Dakha said the party high command had taken the right decision by handing over the reins of the party to a dynamic and far-sighted person like Amarinder Singh. "The change of guard will rejuvenate the organisation and morale of the cadres will receive a big boost,” they said.

The District Youth Congress Committee which met at Circuit House to finalise the arrangements for the proposed "pad yatra" on November 1 from Mohali, celebrated the appointment of Captain with distribution of sweets and expressing gratitude to the party high command.

The Labour and Employment Cell of PPCC, which met under the leadership of Sunder Lal Mehta, also expressed gratitude to the party leadership.

Party workers led by former MLA and parliamentary secretary Surinder Dawar celebrated the occasion at a well-attended function at Cheema Chowk. Satish Sharma, secretary, PPCC, also hailed the decision of the party high command.



Give cozy touch to your home this Diwali
Manav Mander
Tribune News Service

Floating candles, diyas, rangolis and lamps have flooded the market
Floating candles, diyas, rangolis and lamps have flooded the market. Tribune photos

Ludhiana, October 27
This is the time when you deck up your home and give cozy and festive touch to it. Lights, lamps, flowers, bells, rangoli, candles and diyas all add an extra zing into the celebrations.

You can either put up traditional torans at entrances to welcome Goddess Lakshmi into your home. Torans made of mango leaves and marigold flowers look lovely but don’t last for long. You could instead opt for cloth torans embellished with beads, sequins; mirror work, shells and coloured paper.

Light the exterior of your home with mashals, suggests interior designer Mridula. “Mashals last longer and are low on maintenance. Pick ones with an aluminum or cane base,” she adds.

Arrange the furniture of your living room to make corners where people can sit in groups cozy. Place floor cushions, Diwali goodies next to the seats so that your guests.

Conventional and unconventional bells and diyas can be used for decorating a corner of the house. An assortment of bells and diyas of different sizes placed at different heights will give an interesting effect.

Besides giving a new look to your house this Diwali, try giving a fresh bright and ethnic decor to your room. Decorate your room in a way that reflects your personality and taste.

You can use different shapes, size and colours of candles to decorate your room for the special day. You can even use floating and aromatic candles or decorate the entrance of your room with a colourful rangoli or flower petals and place diyas around it.

For your cushion covers mirror work material and artifacts are readily available in the market. Round or square mirrors can be stitched onto the cloth to make cushion covers, bedspreads, wall hangings and table covers.

Diwali being a festival of lights add a personal touch to your lighting; be different. You can design or modify your wall lights by doing simple things. Simple rice paper lanterns can be made. You could buy inexpensive earthenware pots and urns from the market and give them an exclusive touch by decorating them yourself. A combination of pots of various sizes would make it more dramatic.

Shallow terracotta vessels could be filled with water. Flower petals and candles or diyas be made to float on them for that special Diwali feel. Prefer a dark corner for the assortment of diyas and lantern.

Decoration during Diwali is not all about costly renovation and new paint. Time, a few constructive ideas, determination and patience can give every home a makeover and new look during Diwali.



Loads of choices for you
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, October 27
With Diwali nearing people seem to be spoilt for choice as market is loaded with varieties of gifts, which they exchange on this day.

Two decades ago, Diwali gifts meant taking napkin-covered steel plates to neighbours’ house and receiving similar plates from friends. Steel plates, sweets or even fruits are now a passé.

Markets like Ghumar Mandi, Sarabha Nagar, Civil Lines or Model Town are dazzling with bright coloured gift articles, candles, idols of Laxmi-Ganesh with chocolate goodies, cookies, wine glasses, crystal Ganesh and door hangings.

Idols of Laxmi-Ganesh are considered to one of the best items to be gifted during the festival. A few buy the idols made of gold and silver while others prefer those made of rexin. The price of idols embedded with stones and jerkins start from Rs 500 onwards. Beautiful gold-painted gods on glasses cost anything between Rs 300 and 500 per picture.

Silver and gold coins are also considered auspicious gift items. “Silver coins are in great demand as people consider them as auspicious gift items. Silver utensils, which were in vogue a few years ago, has slowly given way to silver coins,” said Ram Parkash, a jeweller at Ghumar Mandi.

There are numerous choices if one wishes to gift kitchen appliances during the festival. One can choose from a wide variety of citrus juicer, electric kettle and blender, toasters, microwaves, microwave ovens, dinner sets, steam irons, rice cookers, coffee makers, juicer-mixer-grinders and oven-toaster-grillers. If nothing strikes you, then get the Bohemian crystal vases, bowls and photo frames imported from Eastern Europe and Lord Ganesh in terracotta and silver for Rs 8,000.

For someone close to heart, one can choose a few fragrances like Versace, Dunhill, Calvin Klein, Burberry, Christian Dior, Elizabeth Arden, Gucci, Estee Lauder or Paco Rabbane. Starting from Rs 1,500, these can go up to Rs 10,000 a bottle at all leading lifestyle stores.

If your wife is tired of the heavy jewellery she got at the wedding then go for branded jewellery from Gili and Oyzterbay. Gili has stylish solitaires, rings and earrings under the Nakshatra range and you can also go for unusual designs and shapes with Oyzterbay diamond jewellery.

Akshay Bector, MD, Mrs Bector’s Food Specialties Ltd., said, “Festive season spur the sales as the consumers are bent upon spending more. Consumers tend to feel a need for a break from the predictable options like sweets. We are introducing attractive gift packs of biscuits and Indian ethnic snacks. This clubbed with attractive promotional schemes will not just attract our regular consumers but new ones too”. “A basketful of goodies is my idea of a perfect gifts this Diwali,” said Subodh Aggarwal, a businessman from the city.

Green Diwali

A few persons have decided to make this year’s Diwali green and eco-friendly. Gifting green plants and fresh flowers is yet another idea that has clicked with people. Florist shops are flooded with orders. Apart from decorating their houses with flowers, residents are also buying flowers for greetings. Bonsai, orchids and bamboo streaks, are a hit.

Bonding Time

People exchange gifts for strengthening ties and developing personal bonds. There are a few who present gifts to bakers, administrators and doctors for getting their work done. Gifts like gold, diamond jewellery sets, microwaves, refrigerators, TVs are gifted in bulk to officials concerned.



From Schools and Colleges
Inter-college debate

The Nehru Sidhant Kender Trust organised the 15th Inter-College Debate on October 27, 2010, at Khalsa College for Women, Civil Lines, Ludhiana, as part of Pandit Jawahar Lal Nehru birth anniversary celebrations. As many as 13 colleges with a team of two speakers each participated in the debate. The topic chosen for the debate was "Materialism has hijacked the time-tested values of Society". Sarbarinder Kaur Grewal, manager, Khalsa College for Women, Ludhiana, was the chief guest on the outset, Bipin Gupta, Trustee, extended a warm welcome to the chief guest and the participants. He spoke inspirational words to boost the morale of the participants and asserted that such contests built up the confidence and morale of the speakers and help them to do better in life.

The Trust had nominated eminent educationists Dr. RC Sharma, Wg. Cdr. JS Bhalla, Prem Bhushan Goyal on the panel of judges. The speakers presented their view on the topic confidently and fearlessly and displayed their oratory skills. Sarbarinder Kaur shared her views with the students and congratulated the speakers for their oratory skills. Applauding the role of the organizers of the show, principal Varinder Kaur Thind encouraged the students and the event concluded with her vote of thanks. The following were declared the winners:

1. Winner of Nehru Trophy: S.C.D Government College for Boys

2. First prize: Rohit Kapoor S.C.D Government College for Boys

3. Second Prize: Karminderbir Kaur (KCW), Rumika Gulati (Pratap College of Education)

4. Third prize: Imandeep Kaur KCW

5. Consolation prize-Ramanjeet Kaur Malwa Central College of Education

Science congress

The "Children Science Congress" and the "Inter-School Debate Competition" was held at Spring Dale Senior secondary school. The competition was organised by the Punjab State Council of Science and Technology, Chandigrh, with the help of District Science Supervisor Shashi Trehan, District Education Office, Ludhiana. Shashi Trehan, was the chief guest at the inaugural ceremony and S Tejinder Singh Ahluwalia and Neena Ahluwalia were the guests of honour. "Science and Technology for Challanges in Life" was the topic given for the Children Science Congress. From urban group Spring Dale Senior Secondary School and from rural group DPS Public Senior Secondary school came first in the competition. The district-level debate competition was held on the topic "Population Education". Mannat Mangat and Madhuri Goyanka from Delhi Public school, Ludhiana, bagged the first position in the competition. Harbhajan Ram, DEO, was the chief guest at the closing ceremony of the event.

Industrial Visit

The Training and Placement Cell and the Indian Society for Technical Education student's Chapter of Guru Nanak Institute of Management and Technology organised an industrial visit for its BBA final semester students to Coca Cola. The placement coordinator accompanied the students. An interaction session of students was conducted with the production team. The students were taken to various sections. They were told about the procurement of empty bottles, proper washing of bottles before filling, physically and electronically checking of bottles for any defect. The process of quality check and packing system of filled bottles was also demonstrated. Stinder Singh, GM, marketing, and quality system delivered the company's presentation in which he highlighted the importance of purified water in the manufacturing of beverages.

Bio-diversity fest

A poster making and collage-making competition was held as a part of the Biodiversity Fest at B.C.M. Arya Model Senior Secondary School, Ludhiana. The competition was organised in an effort to sensitise young children about the issues pertaining to conversation of biodiversity. The contestants were appreciated for their hard-hitting depiction of a silent earth enduring pollution. The entries were adjudged and displayed to impart the awareness about the issue.



Road Safety
City-based expert to attend meeting in Netherlands
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, October 27
City based road safety expert Dr Kamalzit Soi has been chosen among 70 representatives from all over the world, who would attend the World's Expert Meeting on the Automated Video Analysis of Road Traffic Scenes, to be held on November 15 and 16 in Soesterberg, Netherlands.

A majority of road safety experts from USA, UK and Australia, will be taking part in the two- day meeting.

Soi, who is also the chairman of Punjab State Road Safety Council (PPSAC), has done a lot on work in the fieled of road safety and accident prevention. The Netherland’s, TNO Defence, Security and Safety, has invited Soi to participate in the World's Expert Meeting on Automated Video Analysis of Road Traffic Scenes .

The TNO Defence, Security and Safety is the world's leading research organisation working with the Dutch Government.

The research in Road Safety and traffic management has contributed significantly in reducing accidents and number of deaths in Europe.With the inputs from world's best brains in the field of road safety and accident prevention, Soi is expected to bring home some innovative and cost-effective solutions to the problem of road safety and accident- prevention in the country and more specifically in the state.



Dengue Cases
‘Govt failed to take remedial measures’

Ludhiana, October 27
Ludhiana MP and the national spokesperson of the AICC Manish Tewari today lashed out at the state government and the health authorities for their failure to prevent the spread of dengue. In a statement issued here today, Tewari pointed out that the government has not learnt any lessons.

“Every year, there are thousands of dengue cases and several deaths, but the administration remains unmoved,” he said. — OC



Injections worth Rs 1.9 lakh seized
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, October 27
Oxytocin injections worth ` 1, 90, 000 were seized from a dairy at Hambran Road during a raid carried out by a team of drug inspectors.Tejinder Pal Singh, who had stored the injections in violation of the Drugs and Cosmetics Act, owns the dairy.

The initiative was taken on the directions of the Ludhiana Civil Surgeon Dr Satwant Bhalla who after getting the information requested the state drug controller to conduct a raid. The dairy owners are indiscriminately administering Oxytocin to dairy animals so as to increase their milk yield.

The team of drug inspectors included Balram Luthra from Ludhiana, Karan Sachdeva from Faridkot , Gurbinder Singh Taran Taran, Aman Verma from Gurdaspur.



Scooterist killed
Our Correspondent

Phillaur,Ooctober 27
One Scooterist identified as Sohan Singh of Bhaura village was killed on the spot when his Scooter on which he was riding was hit by a speeding vehicle near Phillaur on the national highway last night.

The vehicle driver sped away.The police has registered a case against the unknown vehicle driver and sent the body of the deceased to Phillaur Civil Hospital for a post-mortem examination.



Ludhiana win chess championship
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, October 27
The Punjab School State Chess Tournament was held at Moga from October 23 to 26, 2010. Ludhiana District has won the overall championship trophy for all age groups. Under-14 the girls won the first position. Apoorva Sharma and Medha Kalia (Sacred Heart, B.R.S Nagar, Ludhiana respectively) Himandeep Kaur and Shubamdeep Kaur (Ryan International) and Muskan Lamba, Shradha Seth (B.C.M) were the participants. Second and Third positions were bagged by Barnala and Sangroor respectively. In under-19 girls category, Sangroor, Ludhiana and Moga stood first, second and third respectively. Among the players were Manvi Chawla and Prerna Jindal from Sacred Heart School, Diksha and Bhanu from Greenland School. In under-14 boys category, first , second and third positions were bagged by Amritsar, Ludhiana and Mohali respectively. Players included Ishaan Bansal and Rajat Gupta from Ryan International, Vinayak and Arnav Jain from B.C.M School, Sayam Jain and Shivam from Greenland and B.V.M respectively. In-under 17 boys category, Amritsar, Jalandhar and Ludhiana bagged the first three positions .The Divyanshu and Dilbagh from Greenland, Sahil and Kuljeet from B.C.M and Karan from K.V.M participated.

In under-19 boys category, the first position was bagged by Ludhiana while Sangroor and Amritsar stood second and third respectively. The Participants were Kunal Chawla from Sacred Heart B.R.S Nagar, Rahul Lamba and Sahil Batra from B.C.M and Saksham Jain from Greenland.

The players of Green Land Senior Secondary Public School representing Ludhiana District in various categories helped their respective teams to achieve various positions.


U-19 (boys): Saksham Jain bagged Ist place

U-19 (girls): Diksha bagged second place

U-19 (girls): Bhavna bagged second place

U-14 (boys): Samayak Jain bagged second place

U-17 (boys): Divanshu Jain bagged second place

U-17 (boys): Dilbagh Singh bagged third place 



HOME PAGE | Punjab | Haryana | Jammu & Kashmir | Himachal Pradesh | Regional Briefs | Nation | Opinions |
| Business | Sports | World | Letters | Chandigarh | Ludhiana | Delhi |
| Calendar | Weather | Archive | Subscribe | Suggestion | E-mail |