L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Enumerators give Census duty the slip
Authenticity of collected data doubtful
Anshu Seth
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 1
Enumerators for Census-2011 have failed to visit more than 100 Housefed flats, 52 houses in Block D of Shaheed Bhagat Singh Nagar and hundreds of houses in urban areas like Harnam Nagar, Asha Puri, Urban Estate Dugri and Phullanwal in Ludhiana district.

This has put a question mark on the authenticity of the data thus collected as the second phase of Census operation ended yesterday. The collected data is going to be compiled on the basis of the “bogus details” filled in 29 columns of the forms.

In what could be termed as sheer wastage of the government’s money, the enumerators in the absence of any check from authorities responsible for the execution of Census 2011 have adopted a casual attitude towards the entire exercise.

Atul Sharma, joint secretary, SBS Nagar Block D Welfare Society, in a complaint to Joint Commissioner of the Municipal Corporation, MS Jaggi, who also happens to be in charge of Census operations in Ludhiana district, stated that no enumerator came to fill the forms in their area during the first phase of Census in 2010 and in the second phase that concluded yesterday. “We urge the administration to take strict action against those deputed as enumerators in our area,” he added.

“They would not have ignored the Census duty had they been deputed nearer to their offices or workplaces. This would have even saved their time and traveling expenses,” a senior bank official said. 

Forms Filled

“I have also received similar complaints. We have deputed special teams in all such areas and got the forms filled with precision. The remaining areas will be covered today. I have already issued directions to the Census in charge, Ludhiana, in this regard” — Seema Jain, Director, Census operations, Punjab 

UID Cards

All Indian citizens will be getting unique identity cards on the basis of information gathered during the Census. 


Destitute counting a sham 
Anshu Seth
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 1
Hundreds of destitute infants, teenagers and adults who had to be counted on the night of February 28 were left to carry on with their struggle with life, as enumerators failed to visit the areas inhabited by them.

The road sides, temples and areas adjoining bus stand and railway station have large chunk of migrant populace from Uttar Pradesh, Bihar and Rajasthan, who are either working as daily wagers or have taken to begging.

Gopal (16) from Bihar, who does not have a roof on his head, lives near the Jagraon bridge and works as a daily wager in the nearby hotels. Expressing surprise over the counting for Census the boy said, “It is already 11.30 am and nobody has come to visit us or take any details about our occupation, families, income or anything else. On the contrary, the cops had come with their batons to drive us away from the Guru Nanak Stadium.”

Similarly, Chanda, who earns her living by begging near the Shaheed Sukhdev Thapar Inter State Bus Terminal, had a confused look on her face when asked about the Census 2011. Having failed to understand about the Census 2011, all that the woman could say was, “Kisi ne hamein kuch nahin poocha”(nobody has come to ask any of us about our living) and the very next moment she was asking for Rs 10.

Best known for its wealth, the city in over a decade has become a favoured destination of the mafias running “begging business”. Substantiating the fact, Sohan, a beggar said, “Recently our group leader brought 10 young girls from Uttar Pradesh, who have been assigned different areas for begging. But none of us have been counted or visited by anybody,” Sohan added.

The Census would be incomplete in India till the time the counting of the “homeless” is done with a precision, as a large number of people living below poverty line (BPL) come under the category of destitute. 



More trouble for cycle industry
Industrialists want withdrawal of Central excise duty on cycle parts 
Manav Mander 
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 1
Already struggling with high input cost and tough competition from China, the country's oldest bicycle cluster in the city is in for tough times as the Union Budget has proposed to bring this sector under the purview of the Central excise net.

With this, the prices of bicycles will see an upward trend and it is estimated that cost will go up by Rs 50-60. Terming the imposition of duty on poor man's mode of transportation as a big blow, the bicycle industry has sought immediate withdrawal of the same in order to save this sector from extinction.

“It is unacceptable that the bicycle sector be brought under the Central excise net. Bicycles are eco-friendly and cater to the poor strata of the society. Earlier also, the government tried to bring cycles under the Central excise net, but it was not implemented. We have formed a joint action committee and we will meet the Finance Minister urging him to rollback the duty," said Onkar Singh Pahwa, managing director of Avon Cycles.

"The 1 per cent Central excise duty imposed on bicycles is non-refundable as a result the prices of cycles will go up. It is estimated the price of cycle will go up nearly by Rs 50 per cycle," said Charanjit Singh Vishivkarma, managing director of Vishivkarma Industries Private Limited.

The cycle industry is already facing tough competition from China and the overall export of cycle parts has fallen to Rs 5,00 crore from Rs 950 crore. The imports have increased to Rs 1,000 crore from Rs 100 crore in the past two years. Local manufacturers have stopped production in their units and in turn are importing bicycle parts from China.

"We have received a jolt after the Finance Minister proposed to impose 1 per cent Central excise duty on 130 items, which also includes cycle parts. As a result, cycle will cost more. In February itself, the prices of cycle went up by Rs 100," said another small-scale cycle manufacturer from the city.

The Centre had imposed excise duty on bicycle in 2001, but it had to withdraw the same within three months due to stiff opposition from the bicycle manufacturers. 



Altercation between doc, ward boy
DMCH staff strike work for 4 hours, patients suffer 
Anshu Seth
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 1
Patients along with their attendants at Dayanand Medical College and Hospital (DMCH) were at the receiving end as paramedical and nursing staff went on strike for more than four hours today.

The strike was an outcome of an altercation between Dr Pawan Attri, a resident doctor, and Pankaj, a ward boy, which had taken place yesterday.

Harried patients

Dr Attri along with other resident doctors in a complaint lodged with the management alleged that the ward boy had “slapped” him. This had led to the suspension of ward boy.

The strike began at 9 am and lasted for four hours. It was called off after the DMCH management intervened and constituted an inquiry committee to look into the matter and cancelled the suspension order of the ward boy.

High drama prevailed at the reception of the hospital as the nursing staff in order to extend support to the DMCH Employees Union joined the striking paramedical staff, thereby leading to “chaos” in the front hospital’s office.

The situation became tense when the resident doctors, too, came out of their classes and wards so as to exert pressure on the management to uphold the “suspension”  of the ward boy. 

A paramedic said Pankaj was bandaging a patient when Dr Attri called him for another work. The ward boy told the doctor that he would come after completing the task.

“Dr Attri took it as an offense and shouted at him. As the ward boy made an attempt to complain to the ward in charge, Dr Attri tried to stop him and both got entangled, but it was projected as slapping,” the paramedic added. 

The employees said things would not have gone this far, had the management taken an initiative to “sort out” the matter yesterday.

“Instead, Dr Ashwani Chaudhary, medical superintendent, threatened us saying, “do whatever you can but we will not revoke the suspension orders of Pankaj,” Rajwant Randhawa, president, DMCH Employees Union, said. 

Employees seek ‘respect’

Rajwant Randhawa, president, DMCH Employees Union, said they would not let the services in the hospital suffer as all union members wanted was “respect” 

MS orders probe

Medical Superintendent of DMCH, Dr Ashwani Chaudhary, said a committee had been constituted to inquire into the matter. The ward boy had apologised to the doctor and both had proceeded on leave till the committee submits its report 

Nursing staff: Stark contrast

Jumping at an opportunity to avail free time, nursing staff after getting a call fromunion leaders rushed out of the wards and added to the chaos in the reception area. Ironically, many of them were not even aware of the reason behind the strike. A few nurses were, however, seen serving the sick. A young nurse in a surgical ward said, “We are different from the rest. We have been given a chance to serve the sick and comfort them when they have lost all hope.”



Lengthy CBSE physics paper dismays students
Anil Kumar

Ludhiana, March 1
The inordinately lengthy CBSE physics question paper left class 12 students in a flap in their very first board exam of the 12th standard, with the stress showing on their faces after they emerged from the hall after the three-hour test. Most of them complained they were unable to attempt a few questions at the end due to very little time left.

Akash Kiran, a student of Kundan Vidya Mandir, said the paper was easier that expected but too lengthy. "Though I tried to attempt all questions a 5-marks question was left out when the exam observer rang the final bell, but I still hope to get good marks. Even a single mark increases the percentage that is required to secure admission in good educational institutions."

Another student, Arshnoor Minhas, also appeared dissatisfied. "It was an easy paper and I managed to attempt all the questions. Nevertheless I’m worried I may lose about 8 marks as I couldn’t properly concentrate on the last questions and a few answers may be even wrong. I expect to get only 65 to 70 marks from this paper”, he said.

Rakesh Jindal, father of a student, complained his son was “harassed” during the last minutes of the examination. "My son came out disappointed and told me he was attempting his last question when the observer snatched his answer sheet, turning down his requests to give a few seconds to complete the answer," he said.

Requesting anonymity, his son said the question paper was very easy but unexpectedly lengthy. "The paper included more theoretical questions and allotted only 10 or 12 marks to numerical questions. The CBSE should prepare a balanced physics question paper and also ensure all questions can be attempted in three hours. The exam observers didn't give me a single minute to complete my last answer even though I was almost done," he rued.

Shivani, a student of Bhartiya Vidya Mandir, also pointed out the same problem. According to her the physics question paper had more theory questions than could be attempted within the stipulated time of three hours. "I found it a very lengthy paper and mentally prepared myself at the outset. However, I found other students struggling while attempting all the questions. There was very little time to clearly understand the questions," she observed.



Accused in tehsildar case to rejoin SAD
Shakes hands with the rival of his aide 
Kanchan Vasdev
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 1
Politics makes strange bedfellows. This was evident today when a local councillor, Kamaljit Singh Karwal, who was thrown out of the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) after he was named an accused in the tehsildar beating and stripping case, is all set to make his way back into the party through the city Mayor, Hakam Singh Gyapsura.

Karwal has been a very close aide of Youth Akali Dal district president Simarjit Singh Bains, who boycotted recent rallies of the SAD in Ludhiana as he was being deliberately sidelined by several senior leaders of the party, including the district party president, Hira Singh Gabria and city Mayor.

The duo remained in the Central jail for almost a year after they were named accused by tehsildar, GS Benipal, who was allegedly stripped in his office in full public view and a murderous assault was launched on him.

Karwal's joining the SAD yet again and that too through the Mayor holds significance as tehsildar Benipal was recently shifted from the city. Moreover, the Mayor is a very close associate of Minister for Jails Hira Singh Gabria.

Bains and Karwal had been holding him responsible for naming them in the tehsildar case, owing to the bitter rivalry these two groups have been nurturing despite being in the same party. 

Talking to The Tribune, Karwal said he was going to join the SAD and admitted that he had met Gyaspura on this account today. He said his association with Bains would remain unaffected, but he was making his way back into the party through the Mayor, who was also a senior SAD leader. 

While Karwal's joining back the SAD through Gyaspura is being seen as a major jolt to Bains, Karwal referred to the Mayor as a via media. ''I am not joining SAD through Jails Minister Hira Singh Gabria. I will never go to him. The Mayor is a senior member of our party. There is nothing more to it," he said. 

Sources within the party said Bains was upset with the SAD and Karwal's bid to join the party was all set to make him all the more upset. 

Bains was not available for comments today. Just a few days ago, Bains had said he enjoyed the support of several party councillors and among them he had named Karwal. 

Gyaspura said Karwal was formerly an Akali. His induction would depend on the party president. He just came to see me, " he said. The Mayor was mum on whether the party was willing to forget that he was named an accused in the tehsildar assault case. 



Policy on regularising illegal colonies a damp squib
Kuldip Bhatia

Ludhiana, March 1
The policy on regularising unauthorised residential colonies in urban areas, notified by the Punjab government last December, has failed to serve the intended purpose due to its inbuilt flaws and practical obstacles in implementing it.

That the policy has not gone down well with builders and real estate developers in the city, which has over 500 such colonies, is evident from the fact that not even a single application for regularisation has been filed till date with the Greater Ludhiana Area Development Authority, the licensing and regulatory body under the provisions of Punjab Apartment & Property Regulation Act, 1995 (PAPRA).

If the response of the realty sector to the regularization policy so far is any indication, the promoters appear to have decided not to go for compounding of colonies developed without obtaining a license in violation of PAPRA provisions.

"The stringent regulations laid down for compounding of the offence (of developing an illegal colony) are a big deterrent. Even after the colony’s promoter pays development charges at the rate of Rs 400 per square yard to the regulatory body, it is mandatory for him to obtain a license and get all necessary clearances as well as “no objection” certificates from various agencies. This is in addition to providing a bank guarantee against an undertaking for completion of all internal development works within a period of one year," says Gulshan Kumar of GK Group, a prominent real estate developer.

Almost without exception, the big players in the city’s property development sector feel the rules for regularizing unauthorised colonies should have been much simpler. "It should be a simple and hassle-free policy aimed at attracting the maximum number of colonizers, and allow residents of illegal colonies to take benefit where the colonies’ promoters have disappeared after selling plots without completion of internal development works,," says Kamal Chatley, another realtor.

He went on to say rather than formulating a complex and impractical policy that appeared unable to deal with the huge problem of thousands of unauthorized colonies in the state, the government should have straight away gone for collection of development charges from residents of such colonies at the time of registration of title deed, approval of building plan or grant of a power connection.

Residents of scores of unauthorized colonies in the city also appear dismayed as the policy does not provide any ray of hope to them. Jagtar Singh, SL Sharma and many others like them who had the misfortune of purchasing plots in an illegal colony on Humbran Road say the colony’s promoter is “nowhere to be seen.”

"The internal development works in the colony are incomplete and the amenities promised to us at the time of purchase of plots nonexistent. We’re prepared to pay development charges based on the size of plots, but it’s neither practicable nor possible for us to complete other formalities stipulated in the policy, which is ill-conceived. The policy only looks good on paper but it doesn’t provide any relief to residents of illegal colonies, nor will it be able to deal with the huge problem of unregulated development in the housing sector," they asserted.

No application filed

The policy has not gone down well with builders and real estate developers in the city as not even a single application for regularisation has been filed till date with the Greater Ludhiana Area Development Authority, the licensing and regulatory body under the provisions of Punjab Apartment & Property Regulation Act, 1995 (PAPRA)



Anti-encroachment committee
MC fails to hold meetings 
Member shoots off letter to Principal Secy, seeks action against officials 
Manvinder Singh
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 1
Levelling serious allegations against Ludhiana Municipal Corporation (MC) officials for not holding regular meetings of the anti-encroachment monitoring committee, a member of the committee has written a letter to the Principal Secretary of the Local Bodies Department demanding strict action against them.

In a letter written on February 25, Rohit Sabharwal, member of committee, constituted on the directions of the Punjab and Haryana High Court, said in the meeting of committee held on June 30, 2010, it was decided that at least one meeting would be held in a month.

He said though it was recorded in the minutes of the meeting, but the meeting had not being conducted since December 30, 2010, which depicts the non-serious attitude of MC authorities towards the grave problem of encroachments.

He rued that they had given two written complaints to the authorities concerned on June 29, 2010, and on October 18, 2010, regarding the violation, but in vain.

Sabharwal said from past two months, the MC authorities have done nothing to remove encroachments in the city. He said a large number of encroachments have cropped up again. However, officials are misleading MC Commissioner by giving him false feedback that no encroachment has cropped up again.

Similarly, he said, members of the committee have given written complaints regarding encroachments to the authorities concerned, but when the status of the complaints is demanded in the meeting, the authorities concerned usually have no answer.

He said as the authorities know that they would have to face embarrassment due to queries in the meeting, they prefer not to conduct the meeting. “The attitude of the officials concerned is not serious as they are just playing hide and seek with members of the committee,” he added.

Sabharwal urged the Principal Secretary to take strict action against officials responsible for delay in meetings. He said orders should be passed for holding the meeting so that the menace of encroachments could be checked. 



Shifting of sewerage line
MC officials, company at loggerheads 
Manvinder Singh
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 1
Following the death of a seven-year-old boy after falling in an open manhole on the National Highway, war of words has begun between the Municipal Corporation (MC) and the private company, undertaking work of the NH widening, for shifting sewerage lines from the highway.

In a letter to the MC after the incident, officials of the company had asked the former that why the MC had not removed the sewage lines from the highway. Citing a letter written by officials of the National Highways Authority of India (NHAI) about three years ago, officials of the company said that despite the NHAI had told the MC to shift sewerage line from the highway about three years ago, the MC has not bothered to shift it. Company officials have again asked the MC to ensure that the sewerage line was shifted from the highway so that such incidents do not take place in future.

Sources in MC revealed that after receiving the letter, MC officials have sent a strong-worded reply to the company. In his reply, VP Singh, Superintending Engineer (SE) of the operation and maintenance (O&M) branch of the civic body, said it was not possible to shift the 96-inch sewerage line, which caters to more than half of the city.

However, the SE said it would require huge funds and would take at least three years to shift the sewerage line from highway. He said the company was willing to wait, the MC could look into the matter. The SE also advised the company to work carefully and ensure that no loss is done to existing manholes.

When contacted, the SE confirmed of receiving a letter from the company for shifting sewerage line. He said the MC has filed a reply to the letter. 



Budget fails to address key issues: CICU
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 1
The Chamber of Industrial and Commercial Undertakings (CICU) has criticised the Union Budget presented in the Lok Sabha on Monday. In the executive committee meeting of the chamber, the members termed the Budget as directionless which has failed to address the key issues affecting the industry.

The chamber flayed the Budget due to following reasons:

* 1 per cent Central excise duty has been imposed on 130 items, which enjoyed exemption earlier. Battery operated cars have been exempted from the excise duty whereas 1 per cent excise duty has been levied on poor man’s bicycle, sewing machines, branded garments and hosiery items

* The Central excise limit for small-scale industrial units should have been enhanced from Rs 1.5 crore to Rs 3 crore

* The lower rate of Central excise duty that has been enhanced from 4 per cent to 5 per cent is not acceptable

* No provision has been made for technology upgrade in micro, small and medium enterprises (MSMEs). The government should provide a corpus fund of Rs 10,000 crore for the purpose.

* Levy of service tax on new services such as hotel accommodation, air-conditioned restaurants serving liquor, on health check-ups or treatment in private hospitals, services provided by life insurance companies in the area of investment is not acceptable * Domestic and international travel made more expensive

* No provision made for growth and development of agro-based industry

However, the chamber hailed some components of the Budget, which include:

* Giving boost to micro, small and medium enterprises by providing Rs 5,000 crore to SIDBI and Rs 3,000 crore to NABARD

* Lowering of senior citizen age limit from 65 years to 60 years for income tax rebate. The chamber suggested that the tax exemption limit for senior citizens should be raised to Rs 5 lakh 



10 pc patients are children: Expert
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, March 1
Children and even infants are increasingly falling prey to kidney stones due to unhealthy eating habits and lifestyle. Out of the total patients of kidney stone, approximately 10 per cent of them happen to be children.

This was stated by Dr Anand Sehgal, chief urologist, RG Stone and Super Speciality Hospital, while discussing the “rising problem of kidney stones in infants and children - reasons of occurrence and its cure,” organised recently.

He observed that, “Children and infants constitute a very small number of those with kidney stone problems, but now such cases are on the rise. The stone disease in paediatrics is an important problem due to its high recurrence rate.”

He added that, “Kidney stones are more common in children living in hot climate or if they have any birth defects in their urinary tract. A family history of kidney stone also increases the risk factor.”

Attributing the increase in kidney stone problem among the children to unhealthy food habits and lifestyle, he said nowadays kids consume sugar-filled drinks and fast food that is high in sodium, a known risk factor in the formation of kidney stones.

“The symptoms in children with stone disease may range from pain in the abdomen or back, flank pain and blood in urine to non-specific symptoms such as irritability, nausea or vomiting. However, a few children might not experience any symptoms at all. The stone blocks the urinary tract and prevents the normal flow of urine. If the blockage is not treated quickly, it can cause permanent damage to the kidney(s) leading to renal failure, which can be life threatening,” added Dr Sehgal.

Discussing the treatment options available, he said these depend upon the chemical composition of the stone and the biochemical abnormalities causing its formation. “Extra corporeal shockwave lithotripsy is the treatment of choice for kidney stone in many paediatric cases. This procedure is done by directing high-energy shockwave towards the stone which causes the stone to break into fragments that can be passed in urine.”

Dr Sehgal pointed out that the upper urinary tract calculi that are too large to treat with ESWL are most commonly cleared with a minimally invasive surgical procedure called percutaneous nephrolithotripsy (PCNL). During the procedure, small instruments are passed through the skin (percutaneously) into the kidney tove the stone. 



PSPCL gears up to provide uninterrupted power supply
Kuldip Bhatia

Ludhiana, March 1
Punjab State Power Corporation Limited (PSPCL) is working overtime to augment and expand its distribution network to ensure eight-hour power supply to tube wells in the ensuing paddy season.

Once the ongoing projects for the construction of two new power stations and upgradation of existing sub-stations are completed, there will be no disruption of cut due to overload on any sub-station in the central zone, claimed PS Gill, engineer-in-chief, Central Zone of PSPCL, while addressing mediapersons here today.

He informed that the capacity of seven existing 220 KV sub-stations in the zone is being enhanced from 1,700 MVA to 2,200 MVA. New 100 MVA transformers have already been installed at the newly set-up 220 KV sub-stations at the Pakhowal road, Ajitwal and Ferozepur road. “The challenging task of laying a 220 KV Humbran-Ferozepur road new transmission line to feed 220 KV sub-station on the Ferozepur road has been completed and the new 100 MVA transformer at this sub-station will become operational soon.

With the completion of this project, power supply to several elite residential localities like Aggar Nagar, BRS Nagar, Shaheed Bhagat Singh Nagar, Gurdev Nagar, PAU, Kitchlu Nagar, Haibowal and Civil Lines will undergo vast improvement with no load shedding or cuts due to overload,” Gill added.

The overall capacity of all 70 sub-stations of 66 KV capacity each in the central zone, he stated, was being augmented from existing 2,390 MVA to 2,688 MVA, two new sub-stations are being set up at the Tajpur road and Dana Mandi, which will become operational before the onset of summers, while capacity of 66 KV sub-stations at Dugri, Millerganj, Giaspura, Chandigarh road, Rajguru Nagar, Focal Point, Phase VIII, and Gill road is also being increased.

According to Gill, new 66 KV lines were being laid on Pakhowal-Raikot, Pakhowal-Latala, Malerkotla-Malaud sections to de-load the existing overloaded 66 KV transmission lines, which will go on to bring qualitative improvement in power supply to tube wells as well as domestic consumers in the targeted areas.

On expansion of customer services, the PSPCL engineer-in-chief said a private firm had been roped in to provide the facility of online payment of electricity bills in the city. For this purpose, the service provider will open 150 outlets in different parts of the city around April this year.



Ludhiana branch of CA institute awarded
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 1
Ludhiana branch of the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India has been awarded for being the best branch at national level. The award was presented by DK Mittal, secretary, ministry of corporate affairs. Branch chairman Hukminder Sahi and managing committee members of Ludhiana branch received the awards.

Expressing his views, Sahi said: “The award is a testimony to the hard work and commitment of the entire chartered accountants, CA students and our staff members of Ludhiana branch.”



PYS activists submit memo to SDM
Our Correspondent

Amloh, March 1
In response to a call given by Swami Ram Dev for returning the black money deposited in foreign banks by politicians and bureaucrats and to root out corruption from the country, the Amloh and Mandi Gobindgarh unit of the Patanjali Yog Samiti (PYS) organised a march and submitted a memorandum, signed by 10,000 people, to SDM Poonamdeep Kaur.

The memorandum was addressed to the President and Prime Minister of India. They urged them to get back the black money deposited in the foreign banks.

Earlier, the samiti activists held a rally, on the martyrdom day of freedom fighter Chander Shekhar Azad, in front of the Gurdwara Singh Sabha. 



Folk Dance Competition
Batala, Muktsar colleges grab title 
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 1
Guru Nanak College, Batala, and Dashmesh Girls’ College, Badal, Muktsar, grabbed the title of the 8th Annual Late Mohinder Singh Dangori Memorial Folk Dance Competition in bhangra and gidha, organised by the Mohinder Singh Dangori Foundation at Guru Nanak Dev Bhawan here today.

Eleven teams of bhangra and giddha from the state participated in the competition.

Baba Banda Singh Bahadur College, Fatehgarh Sahib, and Government College, Patiala, finished first and second runners-up, respectively, in bhangra while, Baba Banda Singh Bahadur College, Fatehgarh Sahib, and Adesh Malwa Polytechnic College, Faridkot, managed to clinch the second and third positions in the gidhha competition.



Amandeep shines in declamation contest
Our Correspondent

Samrala, March 1
The Hope Society for Health and Humanity, a society with consistent efforts to spread awareness among people relating healthcare and improvement, organised a declamation competition at Government Senior Secondary School, Sihala, near here.

Amandeep Kaur of Class XI bagged the first position, while Jaspreet Kaur and Ramandeep Kaur secured the second and third position, respectively. A consolation prize was given to Yogita Rani of Class VIII.



From Colleges
Art exhibition

LUDHIANA: “Creations-2011”, an art exhibition was organised by the department of fine arts, Khalsa College for Women, here on Tuesday. The event was inaugurated by Raminder Kaur, a renowned eye surgeon, along with college principal, Dr Varinder Kaur Thind. The artistic finesse was evident in the beautiful compositions, landscape, life study, portrait and life paintings, clay modeling, experimental work, best out of waste, acrylic, ceramic, water colour, mixed media, cartooning and on-the-spot landscape. More than 500 works were exhibited. The 
students of graduation and postgraduation were awarded with accolades in all categories.

Sheeba of MA II was declared the best artist. Dr Varinder Kaur Thind acknowledging the budding artists applauded the role of organisers of the show and was all praises for the participating students.

She congratulated the winners for the endeavours put forward by them.


The department of fine arts and dance, Ramgarhia Girls College, Miller Ganj, organised a workshop titled “Art as language” sponsored by the College Development Council, Panjab University, Chandigarh, here op Tuesday. The workshop was inaugurated with great pomp and show, along with an annual art exhibition “Aakriti” 
by Ranjodh Singh, president, Punjab Lalit Kala Akademi.

The keynote address was delivered by Rajpal Singh, president, Punjab Sahit Akademi, who drew comparison between written words and composition of artists. At a certain level, the expression of heart, desires, longings, pain and bliss were equally well expressed in poetry as in fine arts, he said.

The resource persons for the workshop were Rahi Mohinder Singh, Sandeep Joshi and Sikander Singh, all stalwarts in their own fields. Sandeep Joshi captured the imagination of the delegates through his caricatures, while Rahi Mohinder Singh and Sikander Singh expressed their art through the medium of oils and acrylics.


Students of the commerce department of Guru Nanak Girls’ College bid farewell to their seniors at a party hosted by them on the college campus on Tuesday. The function was presided over by president Gurbir Singh and principal, Dr Charanjit Mahal. To add colour to the occasion, the students presented an entertaining cultural programme. The major highlight of the show was modelling by senior students. Charu Mahendru was crowned Miss Farewell. Kirti Vashisht and Gagandeep were the first and second runners-up, respectively. Samidha and Gurpreet got the titles of “Miss Beautiful Smile” and “Miss Elegant”, respectively.


The Union Budget presentation was shown live to students of MBA, MCA and BBA at the Ludhiana Group of Colleges (LGC), Chaukimann, on the Ferozepur Road. The students watched the live Budget presentation made by Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee in the Parliament. Faculty members of LGC also made interactive presentations on various sectors of budgetary planning, including agriculture, taxation, industry, technology, food security, education and infrastructure. While deliberating upon the budget, Prof Harpreet Singh, head of management section of LGC, said the Budget had been prepared keeping in mind the recent challenges like rising inflation and corruption, decreasing growth rate of agricultural sector, increasing demand for infrastructure and rising public investment targets. Rajeev Gulati, general secretary, LGC, appreciated the efforts of the faculty and students for organising the event. — TNS



From Schools
Mahashivratri celebrated

LUDHIANA: Mahashivratri was celebrated with religious fervour at Everest Playway and Nursery School, Maharaja Ranjit Singh Park, here on Tuesday. Tiny tots dressed like Lord Shiva, Mata Parvati, Mahakali, Shuker and Sanicher presented a charming show. Rajinder Sharma, president, Association of Affiliated Schools, Punjab, encouraging the children told them about the ancient Indian culture. Kiran, Sahaj, Hitika, Abhilahsa, Isha and others gave a musical performance. Principal Poonam Sharma distributed sweets and fruits among children.

Graduation ceremony

Nankana Sahib Public School celebrated the graduation ceremony of tiny tots. SGPC president Avtar Singh Makkar was the chief guest on the occasion. He inaugurated the function by lighting the ceremonial lamp. The highlights of the show were presentation of achievements of the school, cultural items performed by the tiny tots and citations-giving ceremony to kindergarten and primary wing scholars. Principal Harmeet Kaur Waraich promised that in the coming years, the school would come out to be one of the best schools in the city. — TNS



3 get life term for murder 
Our Legal Correspondent

Ludhiana, March 1
The court of Additional Sessions Judge Manjinder Singh has convicted three persons on the charges of killing Vikas Kumar of Madepur in Bihar following a dispute over Rs 6,000. They were ordered to undergo rigorous life imprisonment.

Those convicted include Arjan Yadav of Mandi Ahmedgarh, Wechu Lal Yadav and Bablu Yadav, both residents of Madepur in Bihar.

A case under Section 302/34 of the IPC was registered at the Dehlon police station against the trio following a complaint by Dinesh Kumar, a resident of Madepur.

The complainant had submitted before the court that Vikas was working with him in DC Diary at Mandi Ahmedgarh. Vikas had given Rs 6,000 to Arjan Yadav for handing over the same at his home for the marriage of his sister. But he did not make the payment.

Even a panchayat was convened by the father of Vikas at his village. Accused Arjan was also called but he failed to give the money. He called Vikas at a brick-kiln where he was working to collect the money. But he in connivance with other accused killed Vikas. 



Organisers ignore sports events
Mohit Khanna/TNS

Ludhiana, March 1
With the entire sports department machineryputting into use for making the opening ceremony a success, the sports events, which were to commence this morning, were virtually ignored by the authorities.

In the absence of shelter and proper seating arrangements, soccer players in order to escape from rain had to seek shelter under a tree in the morning.

The kabaddi and football matches were delayed for nearly an hour due to the lack of proper arrangements.

Team officials, accompanying players, were forced to sit in their vehicles due to the absence of chairs. It was after when some of the players lodged their protest with sports director Pargat Singh that sports department officials swooped into action.

“We were told the match would start at 9 am, accordingly we reached the venue, but to our surprise there was on one on the ground. Leave aside arrangements, there was no water to drink, too,” said the players.

Sources in the district sports department revealed that theofficials remained busy in the preparations of the opening ceremony, in which Bollywood actor Akshay Kumar performed.

As a result the officials got tired and could not turn at the games venue on time, said a senior official of the sports department.

SINGH IS KING: Bollywood superstar Akshay Kumar; and (centre) Punjabi singer Harbhajan Mann perform at the inauguration ceremony of the Shaheed-e-Azam Bhagat Singh Punjab Games in Ludhiana; (right) ALL LIT UP: Punjab’s martial arts at display during the inaugural ceremony of the games. Tribune photos: Himanshu Mahajan



Strict security plays spoilsport
Mohit Khanna/TNS

Ludhiana, March 1
Strict security arrangements at Punjab Agricultural University (PAU) are becoming an issue of disappointment for spectators of the Punjab games. Residents complained that they are missing the action as security guards deployed on the gate denied entry to the outsiders.

The low turnout disappoints members of the sports association. “The PAU authorities should have been told to relax their strictness for the time being so that more people could come to watch the matches. Further, there is no specific information about the venues where the games are being conducted,” said Gagandeep, a former national-level hockey player, who was here to watch the games.

The kabaddi players, who were commuting in private vehicles, said they were denied entry by the security guards, following which they spoke to the authorities concerned and acquainted them about the matter. It was after officials of the sports department arrived that the players were allowed to take their vehicles.

“Make the games people friendly. Encourage people to visit the university and watch the games. It is due to the security reason that the residents are not coming to watch the games, otherwise games like kabaddi and football has the potential to draw a huge crowd,” felt Jobenjit Singh, who parked his car outside the university and walked nearly a kilometer to watch the kabaddi match.



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