L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Govt goes soft on riot victims
Rs 5 lakh, job for dead man’s kin announced
Kuldip Bhatia

Ludhiana, November 9
Though the clash between a group of victims of the 1984 riots and bona fide allottees of apartments in CRPF Colony, Dugri on Monday claimed one life, the Danga Peerit Welfare Society turned the mishap to its advantage and used the incident to attack the state government. Jaspal Singh, an autorickshaw driver died in a local nursing home after being involved in a scuffle during the clash.

Until late in the evening yesterday the riot victims had been raising angry slogans against members of the ruling SAD-BJP alliance in general and particularly Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal, decrying their “apathy and indifference” towards riot-affected families. However the clamour subsided today when Daljit Singh Cheema, advisor to the CM, came calling to console Jaspal’s family. He announced an ex gratia grant of Rs 5 lakh for the victim’s relatives and a government job for an eligible member of his family.

Following up on the assurance given by district officials to the protesters who also blocked vehicular traffic for over two hours on the Dugri road and the bridge on Sidhwan canal, police registered a case under sections 302, 148 & 149 of the IPC against seven people. They were identified as Jagjit Kaur, Jasbir Kaur, Nisha, Surjit Singh alias Barnala, SP Singh and Baldev Babbi.

A postmortem conducted on Jaspal’s body by a panel of 10 doctors at the Civil Hospital also left many questions unanswered as to the actual cause of death. However, a preliminary report of the postmortem said as the deceased’s vital organs were diseased death due to cardiac failure could not be ruled out. "The final report will be submitted based on chemical analysis of viscera and biopsy report of kidneys," it was officially stated.

That the riot victims had gone to the CRPF Colony yesterday in a well planned manner to take possession of more residential flats in a bid to lay claim for allotment of specific houses, is evident from a report submitted by the state PWD department to the district administration. It said that riot victims had taken “unlawful possession” of as many as 35 residential flats in the CRPF Colony on November 8, 2010, taking the total number of flats occupied by them to 68.

Registration of a criminal case against bona fide allottees of the colony and the government’s bid to appease the riot victims has caused widespread resentment and a sense of dejection among state government employees residing in the colony.

One of the employees, requesting anonymity, said: “The government appears to have completely surrendered to the blackmailing tactics of the riot victims. They were the aggressors and had come to the colony with the intent of taking unlawful possession of government houses which partly succeeded. Senior police officers were present at the spot when some of the riot victims attempted to forcibly enter some houses, beating up the residents in the process. But still government employees are being projected as villains and perpetrators of crime, which is ridiculous.”


Festival of lights spells doom for environment
Kanchan Vasdev
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, November 9
The festival of lights spelt doom for the environment as the levels of air and noise pollution witnessed a rise much above the permissible limits.

As the residents burst fire crackers worth about Rs 10 crores on the Divali night, it raised the Respiratory Suspended Pariculate Matter (RSPM) by several times in residential, commercial and sensitive areas.

Compilation of a data of pollutants including RSPM, toxic gases like Nitrogen Dioxide and Sulphur Dioxide, and noise levels by the Punjab Pollution Control Board has revealed that the the residents had to inhale air laced with high RSPM and hear noise much above the permissible limits.

On Divali day, the average of RSPM recorded in residential areas touched a maximum of 826 micro gram against a permissible limit of 100 micro grams. In commercial areas the RSPM recorded was 1,080 micro grams and in sensitive areas, near Sheila Hospital in city, it was 896 micrograms.

The 24-hours average of RSPM recorded on Divali day remained 367, 511 and 374, respectively, in residential, commercial and sensitive areas.

The noise levels also crossed the permissible limits of decibels during the day and at night. In residential areas, where the permissible limit is 55 and 45 decibels during day and night repectively, the average values recorded were 71.3 and 67.3 decibels. While the maximum decibels at 92.8 were recorded between 10 p.m. to 11 p.m.

In commercial areas, against the allowed limits of 65 and 55 dB, the average turned out to be 74.6 dB and 70 dB respectively. The maximum noise levels of 94.8 dB were recorded between 10 p.m. and 11 p.m.



MC cracks down on illegal hoardings
Manvinder Singh
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, November 9
Tightening the noose on those putting up unauthorized hoardings in the city the staff of the municipal corporation’s advertising branch swung into action by removing hoardings and unipoles from major streets.

With the twin objective of generating more revenues and keeping a check on hoardings mushrooming in the city, MC additional commissioner Kanwalpreet Kaur Brar, who also heads the advertising branch, along with other staff members inspected some of the main roads. The team went to Ferozepur Road, Old GT Road and the elevated road below it, Jalandhar bypass and Dholewal Road to check for illegal hoardings.

Brar appeared very annoyed over the functioning of the staff as a large number of unauthorized hoardings had been installed without due permission from the civic body. She asked his staff to immediately remove all these hoardings as well as four unipoles that had been illegally installed at the central verge on Ferozepur Road.

Warning the staff members that any negligence would not be tolerated, Brar asked them to regularly monitor roads in the city so that immediate action could be taken against those violating the regulations.

Talking to The Tribune Brar called the inspection a “routine check to streamline the branch”. “Its basic purpose was to check illegal hoardings and unipoles”.

Denying the civic body was acting under political pressure, she said: “Unauthorized hoardings won’t be tolerated at any cost. I’ve asked the staff to remove all of them by Wednesday”.



Violation of protocol
NCSC panel to summon Police Commissioner
Manvinder Singh
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, November 9
The violation of protocol by the district police during the visit of the newly appointed Vice-Chairman of the National Commission for Scheduled Castes (NCSC) has landed it in trouble, as the latter has decided to seek an explanation from the Police Commissioner regarding it by issuing summons to him.

In order to review the various schemes meant for the welfare of the Scheduled Castes, Dr Rajkumar Verka, Vice-Chairman of the NCSC was in the city to have a meeting with officials of the district administration.

Irked at not being provided an escort vehicle by the district police during the visit, Verka sought an explanation from the Additional Deputy Commissioner of Police JS Sidhu, who was representing the district police at the meeting that lasted for more than an hour. Though the official tried to pacify the leader, but failing to do that,he called the ADCP (Headquarters) RK Bakhshi to explain the situation.

Despite their best efforts, both officials failed to pacify Verka , who later asserted that he would seek an explanation from the district Police Commissioner by summoning him. Talking to The Tribune, Verka asserted that he had been appointed on a constitutional post, for which according to the protocol it is mandatory for the district police to provide an escort vehicle to him during his visit. He said that the officials had not bothered to follow the proper protocol that could not be tolerated. "This cannot be expected from the senior officials of the department and I will seek an explanation from the district Police Commissioner by issuing summons to him" he added.

District Police Commissioner Ishwar Singh said they had made the necessary arrangements regarding the visit of the Vice-Chairman and the duties of he senior officials had been assigned for it. However as the lapse had taken place they would conduct an enquiry regarding the matter and action would be taken against the officialsfound guilty for negligence.



Freight charges weigh heavy on cycle manufacturers
Manav Mander
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, November 9
Affected by high cargo charges on the import of cycle parts, local cycle traders have started preferring Chinese cycles to the local ones.

Since freight charges by sea are weighing too heavy on cycle manufacturers, the cost of a cycle manufactured and assembled in city, known for its bicycle industry the worldover, has increased. Besides, the cycle traders are burdened with four percent Central Sales Tax (CST) on every cycle purchased from the Indian market.

While importing cycles from China one has to pay nearly Rs 47,000 as freight charges for a single consignment and if one gets the order from Ludhiana the freight charges are double. "If a trader buys cycle and cycle parts from Ludhiana, the freight charges paid by him are higher then the shipment charges paid by him if he gets his consignment from China. This is the reason why traders prefer buying from China," said Badish K. Jindal, Chairman of the Punjab chapter of The Federation of Associations of Small Industries of India. In addition to this, no CST is applicable if cycles are bought from China.

Not only this, lucrative offers given by cycle manufacturers from China are also giving tough competition to the city's cycle manufacturing industry.

A local cycle manufacturer Aalok Aggarwal said buyers prefer importing cycles from China because of low freight charges and freebies offered by China-based producers. Cycle chains, bells and lights are offered free by Chinese cycle makers.

In addition to this, the growing number of cycle manufacturers in China and Taiwan is making the local units disappear from the map of the cycle industry. Manufacturers are increasing in these countries and in turn this is affecting the business here.

Aggarwal also said that the anti-dumping duty should be made applicable to the cycle and cycle parts. This could lead to lesser imports from China. The industry needs to be saved, otherwise only Chinese products will rule and the local industry will go into oblivion.


The cost differential

A locally made cycle priced at Rs 1,000 costs Rs 300 more than a Chinese-made cycle, which is priced at Rs 700



City bus service fails to hit the road
No consensus on annual maintenance contract
Manvinder Singh
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, November 9
The much-awaited bus service has once failed to hit the city roads as the company and the state government have failed to reach a consensus on the issue of the annual maintenance contract (AMC).

A meeting in this regard was organised under chairmanship of SC Aggarwal, chief secretary, in which Municipal Commissioner AK Sinha and the directors of Ludhiana City Bus Service Limited also took part. Representatives of Tata Company, who were called for providing the low floor buses, also attended the meeting.

Sources revealed that the process of purchasing the air-conditioned low-floor buses for starting the bus service had got delayed by two more days as both parties failed to reach any consensus on the AMC issue.

While the company was asking for the more AMC for providing the buses, the government was quoting low rate due to which no final decision could be taken. However, the government gave two more days to the private company to reconsider its rates else they would look for some other service provider.

Municipal Commissioner AK Sinha while confirming this said as Tata had quoted the lowest price for providing the buses so the decision for purchasing them from it was almost final. However, he asserted that the representatives of the company had to take permission from the higher authorities for technical conditions of the AMC. For this, they sought some more time. He expressed hope that the final decision in this regard would be taken in a day or two.

Local Bodies Minister Manoranjan Kalia had announced to start the city bus service in 2008. But the issue continued to linger due to one reason or the other.



Cellphones may harbour bacteria
Anshu Seth
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, November 9
While the ill effects of exposure to radio frequency energy of mobile phones on human health remains a debatable issue, health experts have termed cellphones as major carriers of hospital infections, most of which are resistant to drugs.

Used widely by surgeons, doctors, nurses, paramedical staff and even other employees working in hospitals, the phones are contaminated with all types of bacteria. So much so that studies carried worldwide point towards the presence of resistant pathogens.

Dr BS Shah, professor of pathology and medical superintendent of Dayanand Medical College & Hospital (DMCH), told The Tribune: "Mobile phones have become the major sources of hospital infections which the people carry home. There are no guidelines from any quarters as this is something that every hospital should take care on its own."

“Cellphones used in operation theatres, intensive care units (ICU), emergency wards and trauma centre can add to the problems of the patients, as they are vulnerable due to lowered immunity. The phones act as a reservoir and spread infection from person to person in a hospital setup”, added Shah.

Experts have further pointed out that many types of drug resistant bacteria do no harm to healthy patients but, as soon as they get exposed in the hospital, they become lethal and attack the patients. “They enter in the body through catheters, ventilators, nebulizers or open wounds thereby causing deadly diseases like community acquired pneumonia and bloodstream infection”, they added.

Microbiologists and pathologists referred to a recent study conducted in Turkey wherein the researchers tested the hands of 200 doctors working in ICUs and OTs and inspected their cellphones for the habitat of superbugs. The study concluded 95 % of the cellphones were contaminated at least with one strain of the bacterium with the potential to spread disease from skin irritation to acute infections. Dr Sandeep Puri, medical superintendent, DMCH, said the problem can be best redressed through washing hands frequently.



Filth stalks Doraha streets, courtesy civic body
Lovleen Bains

Doraha, November 9
The town, it seems, is on the brink of a disaster. Thanks to the callous attitude of the local municipal council, which is entirely oblivious of the lurking calamity.

“Cleaning done by sweepers is just an eyewash. The sweepers or sanitary officials have till date not taken precautionary steps or carried out defogging in the affected areas. Thus, people are forced to put up with filth, squalor, sewer and disease all around. An open drain flowing in the affected areas has made the situation more deplorable,” a resident alleged.

A resident of Mangat Street, who is wary of the stagnant water in the street, said, “This is not for the first time that we are facing such a situation. It has been for years together. But the situation, now, is out of control. We are unable to breathe in such filthy conditions. The foul-smell emitting out of the sewer water is unbearable.”

A college teacher complained, “The municipal council is aware that a huge heap of garbage, emitting foul smell, welcomes students and staff of the college every morning and in the afternoon, but the authorities seem to be least bothered.”

“The garbage is picked only to be dumped on roads and streets,” residents complained. They allege that the council has practically no place for dumping the waste and the residents have become the scapegoats. The residents are passing through testing times as the filthy condition in which they are forced to live only helps them to acquire various waterborne diseases.

“The government has issued clear instructions to the councils and the committees to launch various health awareness and cleanliness drives from time to time. But, it seems, that the residents might have to pay through their nose for the negligence on the part of the latter,” a resident of the area stated.



Six hurt in rubber factory fire
Goods worth Rs 20 lakh gutted
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, November 9
Six persons were injured and goods worth ` 20 lakh were destroyed as a fire broke out in a rubber factory at the Focal point locality of the city on Tuesday morning.

Though the fire brigade reached the spot immediately but it took more then an hour for them to bring the fire in control.

According to the available information, the fire broke out in the National Rubber Factory situated at D/ 144 Focal Point, Phase 4, on Tuesday morning at around 10.15 am. As soon as the incident took place, the owners of the factory informed the fire brigade and the police and the workers of the factory themselves began measures to control the fire.

Meanwhile, when the fire fighting staff reached the spot it took more then an hour to control it for which water from the 4 fire fighting vehicles were used.

In the process six workers of the factory identified as Krishna, Brij Bihari, Dhanji, Pooranmasi, Anil and Pappu, who were trying to extinguish the fire, suffered minor injuries after which they were rushed to a private hospital.

Talking to the Tribune, Harjinder Singh, the owner of the factory, said that the fire broke out due to short circuit and goods worth ` 20 lakh have been destroyed.



Illegal structures razed in posh colonies
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, November 9
The building branch of the Ludhiana Municipal Corporation today carried out an anti-encroachment drive in the posh areas of the city. The MC also razed the encroachments allegedly done by a relative of Bharat Inder Singh Chahal, the former media adviser of former Chief Minister Amarinder Singh.

The building branch of the “Zone D” started a massive anti-encroachment drive in the Bhai Randhir Singh Nagar locality and razed illegal the ramps built in the front of the houses. The MC team, assisted by the police, razed over 140 illegal ramps. The team also razed four shops illegally constructed on the Ferozepur Road by the relatives of Bharat Inder Singh Chahal. However, the team did not touch a small room adjoining the shops and served notice to its owner.

There was ruckus at the L block when residents asked the MC staff to raze a liquor vend, illegally constructed on the MC land. However, the owner of the liquor vend opposed the MC action.



Procurement Blues
Tewari bats for harassed Punjab farmers
Seeks Pawar’s intervention
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, November 9
Perturbed over the plight of Punjab farmers, who were facing numerous problems in selling their produce while the faction-ridden state government was also a turning a blind eye to the gross exploitation of paddy growers, Ludhiana MP and AICC spokesperson Manish Tewari today met Union Agriculture Minister Sharad Pawar at Krishi Bhawan, New Delhi, and sought his intervention.

After an extensive discussion on all related issues, Pawar assured the Congress MP to solve the problems being faced by farmers in selling paddy, on priority basis.

During the meeting, Tewari apprised the minister with ground reality over erratic procurement of paddy with specific reference to the inaction on the part of the SAD-BJP government especially towards delayed procurement due to moisture contents.

“The farmers in Punjab are facing an ordeal in the state mandis. They are not paid for their produce for days together and are forced to spend nights waiting for the payment from the procurement agencies.”

Tewari maintained that the farmers living in border state were passing through tough times, and total indifference as well as anti-farmer policies of the government, had made their lives miserable.

Pawar has convened a meeting of senior officials of his ministry on Wednesday evening to find ways and means to redress the problems faced by Punjab farmers and remove bottlenecks in the way of paddy procurement. “I am confident that Pawar will immediately set the process in motion to ameliorate the lot of paddy growers of Punjab,” said Tewari after the meeting.



Contests held to promote Punjabi language
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, November 9
Students from across the state participated in the poetry recitation and literary writing competitions organised by the Department of Languages, Punjab, today at Punjabi Bhavan.

The competitions were organised under the Punjabi languages week being observed by the languages department, Punjab. Harpal Singh Sidhu Deputy director, languages department, Punjab, while speaking on the occasion said that these competitions were aimed at promoting the written and spoken Punjabi language among the younger generation.

In Punjabi singing, Gagandeep from Ferozepur, Gurpreet Kaur from Sangrur, Ishpreet from Ludhiana were adjudged first, second and third respectively.Narinder Kaur (Patiala), Harmandeep Kaur (Patiala) and Gurpreet Kaur (Jalandhar) were the winners for first three positions in the short story writing.

Mehek (Ludhiana), Amrik (Jalandhar) bagged the top two positions in poetry writing while Amandeep from Faridkot, Gurmanjit Kaur from Jalandhar and Karanvir from Sangrur were declared winners in the literary writing competition.

Punjabi Sahit Akademy president Gurbhajan Singh Gill and chief parliamentary secretary Harish Rai Dhanda were also present on the occasion.

Gill congratulated the winners and asked the people of Punjab to become the pioneers in making a wave for the promotion of Punjabi language in the state.

Ravinder Bhattal, Tirlochan Lochi, Dr Kulwinder Minhas, Principal Prem Singh Bajaj and Budh Singh Neelon were on the panel of judges who adjudged the above events.



Livestock Fair
Govt puts aside Rs 4 cr

Ludhiana, November 9
The government was spending Rs 4 crore to boost the livestock industry and encourage farmers to choose this profession to get more gains instead of adopting regular agricultural forms. This was disclosed by Sharanjit Singh Dhillon, chairman, Punjab Agro Industries Corporation, during prize distribution function on the first day of two-day fair organised at Raiya village near here.

Dhillon said such fairs would be organised in every district of state to promote the industry. The government was providing 50 per cent subsidies to livestock farmers. This step would definitely boost the declining economic status of the farmers.

Talking about various subsidies being given to farmers, Dhillon said these would continue at any cost in the state. To bring transparency in such fairs, the government had also recruited teachers and food supplies inspectors.

Joginder Singh, deputy director, Animal Husbandry department Ludhiana said that more than 650 animals from various categories had participated in the fair. More than 150 prizes were distributed to the winners on this occasion. — TNS



4-year-old cancer patient needs money
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, November 9
Having been diagnosed with intra-abdominal Burkitt’s lymphoma, Bhageshwari (four), who is undergoing treatment at the Christian Medical College and Hospital (CMCH), immediately needs to be put on chemotherapy.

Burkitt’s lymphoma is an aggressive type or cancer affecting the lymphnodes. If treated appropriately the cancer can be cured.

But the family’s economic condition is not good as the girl’s father, who is a helper in a store, earns ` 5,000 per month.

“I have to look after Bhageshwari’s twin sister also, but I can’t afford to pay for the medical expenses,” the father rued.

The approximate expenditure for the same is ` 6 lakh over the next four to five month.

The hospital is providing bed for free and has arranged a few medicines free-of-cost. However, the added expenses need to be met. Therefore, the family has requested the well wishers to come forward and help the child. People willing to contribute for the cause can contact clinical hematology office- 0161- 5037957, 9915851124 (cmcbmt@gmail.com <mailto:cmcbmt@gmail.com>)



Blocked Drain
Amloh residents stage dharna
Our Correspondent

Amloh, November 9
Irked over stagnant drain water in streets and bazaars of the town, residents of Amloh staged a dharna and blocked the Mandi Gobindgarh-Nabha road for nearly three hours. The dharna was lifted when two JCB machines were pressed into service to demolish encroachments over the drain, which had blocked the flow of water. Executive officer of the Khanna Municipal Council Bhushan Singh Rana, who also holds the additional charge of the local municipal council, said he had taken over the additional charge only two months ago. Plan was afoot to desilt the nullah, but it withheld till Diwali on residents’ request.

Executive Magistrate Pardeep Singh Bains tried to pacify the protesters, who were raising slogans against the government and municipal council, but to no avail. Poonamdeep Kaur, SDM, reached the spot and examined the functioning of the drain. The residents presented a memorandum to the executive magistrate in this regard.



Cloned to look genuine
Fake Chinese goods flood Indian market
Manav Mander
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, November 8
Flow of counterfeit goods with markings of Indian brand is going on unabated in the country. A few Chinese manufacturers are exporting items like cycle, its parts and auto components bearing established Indian brand names with “Made in India” stamp on them. These goods are entering India through seaports and Nepal, Bangladesh and Burma.

These cloned versions are being sold as genuine products. These are extremely fragile and come with no warranty. Avtar Singh, general secretary, Chamber of Industrial and Commercial Undertakings, says the industrial sector looses approximately 20 per cent of its revenue to these counterfeit goods. Several top brands loose up to 30 per cent of their business due to this.

“These Chinese products are of low quality and are cheap as compared to genuine Indian products. Situation has become so grim that the Chinese economy is eating up our branded products. The damage to the industrial sector is immense because seizures represent a tiny portion of counterfeit goods and lost sales are only one part of the equation,” he added.

Upkar Singh, joint secretary, said the lack of consumer awareness and advancement of technology was reasons behind the surge in the sale of counterfeit products. Lax enforcement laws which make thing easier for counterfeiter.

Another cycle manufacturer, Alok Sharma, said inflow of foreign goods could be checked if the anti-dumping duty on cycle and cycle parts, auto components and software, were imposed.

In addition to this, “custom authorities should be empowered and authorised to intersect, seize and confiscate goods found to be or suspected to be infringing the Intellectual Property (IP) Rights of Indian companies.”

The chamber along with other leading industrial associations demanded that important changes should be made in the country’s IP laws and in addition to this custom duty on imported goods should be at least 20 per cent more than that on raw material. While clearing these goods the Custom authority should verify their invoice values.



Training on submersible pumps from today
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, November 9
The PAU Directorate of Extension Education in collaboration with the training unit of the College of Agricultural Engineering and Technology will organise a training course on "operation and maintenance of submersible pumps and electric motors" for junior engineers and technicians and mechanics from November 10 to 12 at Kairon Kisan Ghar.

Giving details, director of extension education Dr MS Gill said the participants would be provided know-how on the operation and maintenance of submersible pumps. Useful tips regarding selection, installation, assembling and testing of agricultural pump sets will be provided, he said, adding that the participants will be taken to field visits to explain the operation of different pump sets.

Besides, useful information about drip irrigation and sprinkler systems will be shared. Practical tips regarding care, maintenance and repair of starters and motors will be provided. Around 25 participants of the programme will register on the first day of the training programme at 9.15 am, he said. The Technical Coordinators of the course are Dr Rajan Aggarwal and Dr KG Singh, while the course coordinators are Dr DS Bhatti and Dr SK Gupta.



Latest trends in IT discussed

Ludhiana, November 9
The GGN Institute of Management and Technology (GGNIMT) organised a seminar on the latest trends in information technology for the students of the computer department. Prabhjot Singh, CEO of OIT NOIDA, was the resource person.

The seminar began with the introduction to various domains in the field of IT. Singh explained latest technologies in the domain areas of application, enterprise and web development. He discussed about the “Sharepoint Server” which is the latest technology introduced by Microsoft. The company also conducted initial rounds for recruitment of the students into the company. — TNS



From schoolS
Bharat ko jano quiz

Ludhiana: The Amloh unit of the Bharat Vikas Prishad organised an inter-school quiz competition, Bharat ko jano, at Saint Farid Public School here today.

Project in charge and parishad chairman welcomed the guests at the inaugural function. A total of eight teams of junior and five of senior classes from different schools participated in the competition. The winner teams of regions will take part in the state-level competition to be held on November 21 in Patiala and the national-level competition in Lucknow on January 1 and 2 next year.


Senior group: 1. Lagan Kapoor and Udesh Kumar from Government Senior Secondary School, Amloh; 2. Narjeet Kaur and Arshpreet Kaur from Maghi Memorial.

Junior group: 1. Sohan Singh and Ravinder Singh from Government Middle School, Bhadal, Thuha; 2. Diksha Sood and Navjot Kaur from Sant Farid Public School. — TNS



Handle pesticides carefully: PAU VC
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, November 9
Addressing a gathering of farmers in Kaonke Kalan village near Jagraon, PAU Vice-Chancellor Dr Manjit Singh Kang said pesticides being toxic need to be handled with care and safety. He said technologies have been developed to apply pesticides rationally based on economic threshold and that the integrated pest management (IPM) modules have led to reduce the pesticide load in the environment by 30-40 per cent thereby cutting down the production cost.

He cited the example of IPM in cotton and rice where trained scouts help disseminate the technology among farmers. Dr Kang said the practice of burning paddy straw needs to be discouraged as it leads to pollution, besides causing loss of microbes and nutrients in soil.

The loss of nutrients alone is the tune of Rs 200 crore.

Dr Kang also distributed pesticide safety kits among farmers. He said seed treatment operation was simple but reaped great dividends in terms of control of seed-borne diseases and enhanced germination. A demonstration on the seed treatment operation was held on the occasion. An improvised flat fan nozzle for herbicide application in wheat was launched. The nozzle was distributed free among the participating farmers.



Heist at ATM
Security reviewed

Khanna, November 9
Khanna DSP Raminder Singh held a meeting in city police station with bank managers of different banks of the city to review security arrangements in view of looting of money from an ATM.

He appealed the bank managers to install CCTV cameras in all banks and ATM rooms. He also said that security guards should be present at all ATM rooms.

He cautioned them that any bank manager who would not follow the security conditions would do so at his own risk. He said that the Ludhiana Deputy Commissioner had sent instructions in order to save any untoward incidents. — OC



Back to basics
Gemstone jewellery stages comeback
Charu Chhibber
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, November 9
Maybe it's due to shooting prices, but fashion, in general, is taking us back to the basics. The phenomenon explains the resurgence of gem stone jewellery in a major way.

While solitaires and diamonds remain for many a distant dream, fine gemstone jewellery is the perfect substitute for fashion buffs these days.

Interestingly, while gem stone jewellery is being worn as a fashion trend these days, the fact that it is for keeps makes it even more endearing. And it goes without saying that the age-old association of gems with numerous well-known and royal families in the form of heirlooms - be it a rare and exquisite emerald ring or an elegant ruby necklace - adds to their already mighty popularity.

Besides, the timeless appeal and rare ability to translate the bright colours in fashion make gem stones very special.

A chunky piece of gem stone jewellery not only adds an extra zing to one's wardrobe but can also change any regular outfit into noticeable and chic attire.

"Gem stones enhance the beauty of a woman like nothing does. And, when matched well with clothes, it can have a splendid effect as an accessory. In classic settings, these look hot and are a sure shot formula to grab eye balls," says Priyamvada, an assistant fashion designer.

Anything from stud earrings to an engagement ring or a wedding band, all can be set with these stunning stones.

While many choose the elegant gemstone jewellery according to their birthstone, fashionistas across the globe adorn these because of their sheer beauty.

Almost any wardrobe can be accentuated by striking sapphires, romantic rubies, lush-green emeralds and cool aquamarines. What more, these are available in various hues, shapes and sizes and have their own uniqueness.

"A large gemstone ring in sapphire, ruby, or emerald is a good option for a formal occasion. For a more informal evening out, sport elaborate gemstone chandelier ear pieces set in silver while to work, spice up your corporate look with an elegant gem stone pendant," says Priyamvada.

We say, with winters round the corner, gem stone jewellery will do extremely well and a dash of sparkle will help cast a spell.

Popular stones

Besides the ever green and oh-so-popular sapphire, ruby and emerald, other gems like amethyst, tanzanite, aquamarines, garnet, jade, lapis lazuli, moonstone, opal, pearl, sapphire, topaz, turquoise, crystal, amber, bloodstone, cat's eye, citrine, coral, demantoid, goldstone, green beryl, hematite, jadeite, jasper, onyx, quartz, red beryl, rock crystal, rose quartz and zircon are also in vogue.


There are many standard and classic gem stone cuts like round, oval, pear, square, rectangular, princess or emerald. In addition, fancy cuts like emerald, princess, trillion and marquise are also in trend and look stylish.



Gang of robbers busted
Our Correspondent

Khamano, November 9
The Khamano police has busted a gang of robbers who had allegedly stolen a truck from the nearby Mansurpur village. The police has arrested two members of the gang and has also recovered the stolen truck from their possession.

A resident of Mansurpur village Major Singh had filed a complaint with the police alleging that some unidentified persons took away his truck on the intervening night of November 4 and 5.

The police raided some hideouts and succeeded in identifying two members of the gang. Following a tip-off, the police arrested the duo from near Shamshpur village. They have been identified as Gurmeet Singh and Bachittar Singh, both residents of Mansurpur village. The police said the accused have confessed to the crime. They said they were to sell off the truck in Uttar Pradesh.



Drug peddler arrested
Our Correspondent

Mandi Gobindgarh, November 9
A bus coming from Ambala was stopped near Ajnali village and a man arrested for possessing a 9mm pistol and 256 grams of smack. This was stated by SP (D) Gurmeet Singh at a press conference here today.

The accused has been identified as Manjot Singh, alias Moti, a resident of street No. 12, Murgi Mohalla, Batala, Gurdaspur district. A case under the NDPS Act and the Arms Act was registered against the accused at the Gobindgarh police station.

According to the police, Manjit Singh admitted that he had been trading drugs since long.



Motorcycle stolen
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, November 9
A motorcycle was stolen from the GT Road, here this afternoon.

The Hero Glamour motorcycle, bearing registration No. PB 10 CD 8222, was stolen at around 2 pm from Arya Mohalla. Pramod Batish has got a case registered at the Kotwali police station in this regard.



2-yr jail in cheque-bounce case
Our Legal Correspondent

Ludhiana, November 9
Judicial Magistrate Vipindeep Kaur has convicted Navraj Singh, owner of M/s Global Computer Links, Sita Nagar, Ludhiana, in a cheque-bounce case.

He was sentenced to undergo two years’ imprisonment. A fine of Rs 2,000 was also imposed on him.

Pronouncing the verdict, the court held that the accusations levelled against the accused stand proved without any doubt. The court also ordered the accused to make the payment of Rs 5,000 as compensation to the complainant.

The orders came on a complaint by Ashish Jain of M/s New Jain Computer, Pakhowal Road, Ludhiana, in April 2009.

The complainant had stated before the court that he was dealing in the sale of computer hardware items. The accused used to purchase goods relating to computer hardware from them on a credit basis. An amount of Rs 2,13,325 was outstanding against the accused.

On persistent requests to pay the amount, the accused issued cheques totalling Rs 2,12,295 to the complainant. It was assured at the time of handing over the cheque that the same would be encahsed on their presentation to the bank.

However, the cheque was dishonoured by the banker of the accused with remarks of “insufficient funds”, meaning that there were not sufficient funds available to honour the cheque.

Then a legal notice was sent to the accused calling upon him to make the payment of the dishonoured cheque. Despite sending the legal notice, the accused failed to make the payment.

The accused pleaded not guilty. It was pleaded that the elder brother of the complainant had refused to give back the defective goods sold to them. Even the amount mentioned in the cheques had already been paid. Though the cheques were not returned to him. So, there was no legal liability to honour the cheques.

But after appreciating the evidence on record, the court found him guilty and sentenced him accordingly.



CWG hero visits city
Our Sports Reporter

Ludhiana, November 9
Ranjit Maheshwari from Kerala who won a bronze medal in the triple jump event in the recently held Commonwealth Games in New Delhi visited Guru Nanak Stadium here this evening. He covered a distance of 17.07 m to fetch a bronze medal. made a new national record in triple jump.

The star athlete was here to seek blessings from his mentor, senior athletics coach of the Sports Authority of India (SAI), Sukhdev Singh Pannu, before leaving to China to take part in the Asian Games, scheduled to be held from November 12 to 28. Ranjit's performance improved while training under SS Pannu at the national coaching camp in Patiala.

Ranjit participated in the 2008-Beijing Olympics. He won a gold medal in the Asian Athletic Games in 2008 at Jordan with an attempt of 17.19 m. Ranjit also bagged a gold medal (17.04 meters) in the Asian Grand Prix held same year at Guwahati in Assam. With this performance, he put to shade the national record of 16.79 meters, set by Mohinder Singh in the year 1972.Pannu wished Ranjit Maheshwari good luck for the Asian Games.



Basketball league starts tomorrow
Our Sports Reporter

Ludhiana, November 9
The first leg of the 20th edition of the Punjab Basketball Annual League will be held at Gure village in Ludhiana district at the Gurdial Singh Malhi Memorial Basketball Stadium from November 11 to 14, said Teja Singh Dhaliwal, general secretary, Punjab Basketball Association (PBA).

In the men’s section, teams from Punjab Police, Jalandhar, BSF Jalandhar, Powercom, Patiala, RCF, Kapurthala, DMW, Patiala, and the Rest of Punjab will be seen in action. In the women's section, teams from Amritsar, Jalandhar, Kapurthala, Hoshiarpur, Patiala and Ludhiana will participate.

Yurinder Singh Hayer, Deputy Commissioner of Police, Ludhiana, and vice-president of the PBA, will inaugurate the league and RS Gill, former DGP and president of the Basketball Federation of India, will preside over the concluding function.

On the basis of their performance, players for the coaching camp for the 61st IMG/Reliance Senior National Championship will be selected, said Dhaliwal.



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