L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Down in the dumps
Shortage of manpower, machinery turns city into garbage heap
Kuldip Bhatia

Stray cattle feed on garbage in Haibowal area of Ludhiana.
Eyesore: Stray cattle feed on garbage in Haibowal area of Ludhiana. Tribune photos: Himanshu Mahajan

Ludhiana, March 21
Heaps of garbage and domestic waste littered all around the residential and commercial areas in the city, unswept roads and streets, stinking garbage collection points and to make the matters worse, garbage disposal vehicles dropping the collected waste all over while on way to the dumping site. This is the ugly side of the mega city, otherwise known as the Manchester of India and the industrial capital of the state.

The sanitation level in the city, which takes pride in having the richest civic body in the state, is nothing to write home about and leaves a lot of scope for improvement. It is not only the inadequate number of sanctioned posts of sanitation workers and deployment of ad hoc staff along with the scarcity of machinery required for collection and disposal of garbage, but what really ails the sanitation set up is the absence of will to perform and deliver.

Ironically, if the sanitation is bad in the newly developed and posh residential localities and upmarket commercial centres in different parts of the city, it is worse in the old parts of the city and worst in the periphery of the mega city, which generates an estimated 900 metric tonnes of garbage every day.

It might sound shocking, but at least 15 to 25 per cent of the city’s population does not have the proper access to basic amenities of garbage collection and regular sweeping of streets. And this figure is official.

Municipal health officer Dr Charanjit Uppal said: “The city has some 2,003 sanctioned posts of safai workers and ad hoc employees working on DC rates is a little more than 5,000. But even this number is not sufficient. The municipal corporation is in the process of filling regular posts while a proposal to increase the strength of safai workers has also been sent to the state government." Same goes for the machinery like tippers, dumpers, trucks and trailers used for lifting garbage from some 200 collection points in different parts of the city and dumping at Tajpur Road. "We have, in all, 78 vehicles and require at least 15 to 20 more machines for timely lifting and dumping the garbage,” added Dr Uppal.

Even though MC officials claim that the 55-60 acre dumping site on Tajpur Road is sufficient to cater to the city, the closure of another garbage dump at Jainpur village on the directions of the Punjab Pollution Control Board (PPCB) has also come as an impediment in the disposal of garbage.

But there is a flickering light at the end of the tunnel. That is if the claims of MC officials are to be taken at their face value.

MC additional commissioner Kuldip Singh, who is the in charge of the health branch, said a comprehensive project for solid waste management is in the advanced stage of implementation. A public- private participation project for the purpose will envisage house-to-house collection of garbage and its disposal as per the norms of and guidelines of the PPCB. The state government has approved the detailed project report and eight firms have been shortlisted. The project is expected to get operational within next three months, bringing about both the quantitative and qualitative improvement in the sanitation level in the city," he added.

Politics reigns supreme

The shortage of safai workers in the city is not the sole reason for some localities giving a comparatively neater and cleaner look. A few Congress councillors alleged that the deployment of the staff is not on merit or actual requirement of the wards, but on political considerations. “Even if sufficient number of safai workers are not available, the deployment should be proportional, which is not the case,” bemoaned Parminder Mehta and Sushil Raju Thapar, both Congress councillors.

Uproar against collection points

The city has some 200 garbage collection points, which are inadequate to meet the volume of garbage generated in a particular locality. "Everyone wants sanitation to be perfect. But when it comes to designating a collection point, residents and councillors say no to setting up new sites. This is the main reason for overflowing and stinking collection sites,” said a resident. 


Holi celebrations turn bloody
Man kills brother, woman’s body found on railway tracks
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 21
Two deaths were reported in the city on Holi shocked city residents. A man allegedly killed his brother on Sunday evening in the Madhopuri locality following a quarrel during a game of cards and a woman’s body was found near the train tracks in Sherpur village.

The suspect in the first incident, Anoop Singh alias Lucky, 30, was reportedly playing cards with his brothers. He got miffed after he lost a game and was teased by one of his brothers, and the argument soon turned into a fight. In a fit of rage he opened fire at them with his .12 bore licensed rifle, killing his younger brother, Amandeep Singh, 25, and injuring the elder one, Paramjit Singh alias Pamma, 35. The latter was admitted to Christian Medical College & Hospital where he is presently undergoing treatment.

Amandeep was the youngest of four brothers in the family that owns a dyeing business, Jarnail Dyeing, on Rahon Road in Kakowal village. He was married and leaves behind his wife and a two-year-old son.

It is learnt on Sunday evening at around 4:30 pm all four brothers - Paramjit Singh (the eldest), Anoop, Dilpreet Singh, 28, and Amandeep were sitting at their home in the city’s Old Madhopuri locality. According to SHO of division no 3 police station subinspector Raj Kumar, the brothers soon picked up a fight over a petty issue.

“Anoop brought out his .12 bore licensed rifle and fired two shots at his brothers. The pellets hit Amandeep in the chest, while the other shot hit Paramjit on the face. Both were rushed to the Christian Medical College & Hospital where Amandeep succumbed to his injuries. Paramjit is undergoing oral treatment and may not be able to speak for over two months”, said Raj Kumar.

After the incident the suspect fled from the scene and is still absconding. “We’ve recovered the weapon used in the crime, while raids are being conducted to nab the suspect. We expect to arrest him soon,” he added.

Meanwhile, on the basis of the statement filed by the brothers’ father, Gurmit Singh, the division no 3 police filed a case under sections 302 & 307 of the IPC and sections 25, 27, 54 & 59 of the Arms Act against Anoop on Sunday.

In the second incident panic spread in the Sherpur village after the body of a 30-year-old woman was found at a vacant plot located 200 metres from the rail tracks. The woman, identified as Malti, who hailed from West Bengal, had been reported missing from her home in the Sherpur market since Sunday. According to the police, the woman was suspected to have been killed near the train tracks in the wee hours on Sunday. “The suspect might have been in the process of dumping the body and ferrying it on a rickshaw. However, on seeing some people coming towards the rail tracks the suspect left the body and fled the scene,” said Tersem Singh, the police officer investigating the death. He added the police had even searched the deceased’s home to find a clue but it was locked.

It was in the wee hours that village residents noticed the woman’s body and raised an alarm. The Focal Point police soon arrived at the scene and began investigations. Initially the cops suspected the woman had perhaps been stoned to death, but later during the day they found blood splattered on the rail tracks. It was assumed the woman was pushed in front of an approaching train, which resulted in her being killed on the tracks.

Tersem said the police was investigating the case “from all angles” and did not overrule rape as the ‘salwar kameez’ worn by the victim was found lowered. It is suspected that the assailant might have tired to rape Malti, but the latter retaliated strongly following which the accused might have killed her. “The mystery behind the murder would be solved within two or three days,” said Tersem.



Education dept bungles up appointments
Two teachers posted at the same centre under SSA 
Anil Kumar

Ludhiana, March 21
Two teachers getting posting at the same centre under the Sarv Shiksha Abhiyaan (SSA) speaks volumes of the ignorance and irresponsibility of the district education office (secondary) in Ludhiana.

Dinesh Kumar was posted in Government Senior Secondary School, Manak Majra, in February. As Dinesh went to join duty, he was surprised to see that a woman teacher had already been appointed. And much to his shock, instead of adjusting him elsewhere, the department took back his appointment letter asking him to wait.

"I am feeling cheated as I had been waiting to get this job for a long time. The department should double check before issuing appointment letters to teachers," Dinesh said.

The matter does not end here as 47 teachers who were recruited under the SSA on contractual basis accused the department of harassing them due to the delay in their appointments.

The teachers, including 13 women, claim that they had visited the district education office for more than 20 times, but to no avail.

Irked over the indifferent attitude of officials, the affected teachers said they would make a last try and if denied jobs, they would stage a protest outside the office of the DEO (secondary).

Prabhjot Singh, a resident of Kohara, alleged that he lost his teaching job in a private school as he had to take leave for visiting the DEO office to make queries about his appointment.

"I received my appointment letter on February 7. When I went to the school at Kasabad to join, the school authorities denied entry to me saying they did not have a sanctioned post under the SSA in the school," rued Prabhjot. He said a three member-committee was formed to decide the issue, but to no avail.

Saurav Khanna, a maths teacher from Khanna, alleged that two aspirants were appointed on a single post. He said: "I lost my previous job and this job is not confirmed."

Reena Kumari, a science teacher, rued that having gone to a school in Kailash Nagar where she was appointed, the principal confronted her stating that they had vacancy for a maths teacher and not a science teacher.



Action-packed Holi with vibrant hues; petals, pichkaris and balloons
Bowled over by the vibrant hues of Holi, spirited young boys and girls took to the roads to paint the city in different colours. For the elderly, the festival came with an incentive to be a little different as they showered each other with flower petals restricting themselves to pushp Holi. It was pure and simple fun for children who soared high with their pichkaris and balloons taking liberty with strangers on the streets. Himanshu Mahajan captured some moments from around the city on the eventful day.

(1) Flower shower: Instead of colours, residents of MIG flats, BRS Nagar, celebrated pushp Holi in Ludhiana on Sunday.
(1) Flower shower: Instead of colours, residents of MIG flats, BRS Nagar, celebrated pushp Holi in Ludhiana on Sunday.
(2) Colourful drive: Youngsters drive around the city in an open jeep.
(3) Desi Feel: Foreign nationals too join the fun at a city club

(Left) Masti unlimited: A woman dances to the Holi tunes. (Right) Painted face: A man drenched in colours savours the moment.
(Left) Masti unlimited: A woman dances to the Holi tunes. (Right) Painted face: A man drenched in colours savours the moment.



Govt asks MC to explain delay on LED streetlights
Manvinder Singh
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 21
The Punjab government has asked municipal corporation officials to file a report explaining the latter’s delay in installing energy-saving LED streetlights in the city. The ambitious project has been hanging in fire despite the fact that the civic body had floated tenders about two years ago, following which four leading firms had applied for the work.

Though MC officials had cleared the proposal the project was delayed after a key political authority of the civic body raised an objection that his approval had not been sought. Later on civic officials claimed the project had not been completed because the required quorum for tenders was not complete.

However, after BJP MLA from Amritsar Anil Joshi raised a question on the reasons for the delay in commencing the project, the state government has now asked the MC to explain as to why it had not installed the lights in city despite the fact the MC spent about Rs 24 crore every year on operating around 80,000 streetlights in the city. Apart from this huge sum of money the MC also spends Rs 2 crore on maintenance of streetlights due to which only it had mulled the idea regarding the installation of the energy saving street lights.

Sources said in their reply submitted to the state government MC officials claimed they had already begun the process of finalizing the matter.

When asked to comment on the matter, MC additional commissioner Kanwalpreet Kaur Brar said: “We’re already on the verge of completing the process for installing energy-efficient streetlights in the city for which we are looking at presentations of various private firms. We’ve submitted a report on the matter to the state government as required”.



Nobody bothers, nobody cares
Jaswant Shetra

A broken wall of the park.
A broken wall of the park. Photos by writer 

The statue of Lala Lajpat Rai in a state of neglect in Jagraon.
The statue of Lala Lajpat Rai in a state of neglect in Jagraon. Photos by writer

Jagraon, March 21
There is only one park in the town and that too is of little purpose to the residents here. Named after great freedom fighter Punjab Kesari Lala Lajpat Rai, this place is robbed off its beauty due to lack of maintenance.

Situated n front of the office of the local Municipal Council, the park speaks volumes about the Municipal Council’s apathy towards preserving it. As it lacks proper maintenance the grass, flower plants and most of the trees are overgrown and have started decaying.

A few years back, this park was the favourite place for the residents, particularly senior citizens and women who came here for morning and evening walks. But now they too have stopped visiting the park due to the poor condition.

Now days, this park is a favourite destination for idle people who spend their time playing cards here the whole day. Moreover, stray animals can also be spotted wandering around in the park everyday.

The state of affairs is such that even the statue of Lala Lajpat Rai installed in the middle of the park is gathering dust and is cleaned only on his birth and death anniversaries.

The boundary wall of the park is broken from various places and stray animals enter the park and dirty it. So far, officials of the Municipal Council have not bothered to look into the problem.

Rallies and public functions organised by various organisations in the park are making the situation worst. Every time, a function is held there is plenty of litter in the park no one cleans up the mess.

Recently when a function was organised by the Inqulabi Kendra, Punjab, the activists left behind plenty of mess in the park. The activists of the organisation nor the MC officials have bothered to clear the mess. When contacted, Kanwaljeet Khanna of Inqulabi Kendra, Punjab, said that it was the duty of the MC to clear the mess as they had paid fees for the function. MC president Baldev Krishan Dhir, on the other side, claimed that the organisers had even not taken the permission of the MC before organising the function.

Irked over the casualness of the authorities towards preservation of the park, the residents of the city have urged the Municipal Council to make proper arrangements for the maintenance of the park.



Shortage of Space
Rice sheller owners threaten to intensify stir
Mahesh Sharma

Mandi Ahmedgarh, March 21
Apprehending huge losses due to insufficient space for storing stock, rice sheller owners of the area, who are protesting against the Food Corporation of India officials, have threatened to intensity their stir in case the issue is not resolved soon.

The situation turned worse when rice sheller owners of Kilaraipur and Malaudh in Ludhiana district were allotted space at depots situated in Sangrur district.

Justifying the officials’ move, Mohinder Singh, district manager, Sangrur, said enough space had been allotted to owners of shellers in the local town as well as Ludhiana district.

Senior officials of the FCI had advised owners of rice shellers situated at Kilaraipur and Malaudh in Ludhiana district to dump paddy milled by them at depots in the local town. Apprehending shortage of space for their stock, office-bearers of the Ahmedgarh Rice Millers Association opposed the administration’s decision. This led to a situation wherein officials allotted space on a prorate basis. Irrespective of the quantity of produce, “outsiders” were allotted 40 per cent of the available space and the remaining space was left for the locals.

Gora Lal Dhand, president of the association, and chairman Naresh Bansal said out of the total 1,900 wagons, only 500 had been delivered to the agency so far. Whereas they have been asked to complete the work by March 31. Owners may suffer losses to the tune of Rs 3 crore, said the duo.

While Prem Chand Jain of Kilaraipur and Sanjiv Puri of Malaudh alleged that they had been made to suffer due to alleged indecisiveness of the officials. “We fail to understand why the authorities cannot get their own decision implemented. The produce that we have brought to stock here belongs to the FCI and we are simply the custodians. Now when they have allotted us space, we should be allowed to stock the commodity so that we can relieve ourselves of the responsibility,” argued Jain and Puri. 



Singla, Krishan Lal groups bag most liquor vends
Manav Mander
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 21
At the draw of lots for liquor vends held by the excise & taxation department here on Monday, the city’s first vend - in zone no 22 - went to A to Z Wines. The total number of liquor vends allotted were 250. For the purpose the city was divided into 25 zones with each zone having nine to 12 vends, while last year there were 30 zones with 229 vends.

The Singla and Krishan Lal groups cornered the largest number of liquor vends, with both managing to grab four zones each. Last year it was the Malhotra group that got the highest number of zones - six.

The excise department held a total of 80 draws for Ludhiana I, II and III, four for Khanna, three for Jagraon, and two each for Doraha and Raikot.

"During this fiscal the department expects to earn Rs 3,200 crore revenues from Ludhiana I, II and III, which is Rs 700 crore more than that in last year," said excise & taxation commissioner A Venu Parshad. He added from April 1 all liquor bottles would contain a “security label”. "To curtail liquor smuggling a hologram will be displayed on every bottle," he said.

"This year the revenue collection from only the application forms was Rs 20 crore as compared to Rs 39 crore last year. We received fewer applications this year since the number of zones was decreased. Last year we had 30 zones while this year there were only 25," said district excise & taxation commissioner Parampal Singh.

After allotment of a vend the licensee concerned had to deposit a fee of 5 per cent of the bid amount within 48 hours of the draw, another 10 per cent within 96 hours and the remaining 15 per cent by March 31.

The new vends will be operational from April 1 onwards. Urban liquor licensees submitted an initial amount of Rs 10 lakh with Rs 2 lakh submitted by those in rural areas.



It’s war of buses forAkalis, Congmen
Tussle over providing vehicles for a function to mark the birth anniversary of Bhagat Singh on March 23
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 21
The mini bus operators in the district have alleged harassment at the hands of the district administration as officials have "asked" operators to send their vehicles for a programme organised by the Akali and the BJP to mark the birth anniversary of martyr Bhagat Singh at Khatkarh Kalan village on March 23.

But the operators have already taken "advance money " from the local Congress leaders who had approached them 10 days ago.

The Congress leaders have reportedly given Rs 1,000 as advance to each operator (for one vehicle) to arrange vehicles for the same programme at Nawanshehr.

A bus operator, on condition of anonymity said, "Congress leaders have offered us to pay Rs 4,000 for a mini bus and Rs 5,500 for the district bus. We have already been given Rs 1,000 as advance by the leaders. They have asked us to arrange as many buses as we can. We are satisfied with the offer. But suddenly we get a call from the District Transport Office and they want us to return the money to the Congress leaders and arrange buses for the ruling party. This is an autocratic behaviour on part of the officials. In the fight of the political parties, why should we suffer losses?", asked the operator. The district administration officials are offering operators Rs 2,500 for mini buses and Rs 3,500 for district buses.

The operators have been asked to arrange buses "at any cost" or face the consequences. "We are being threatened by the officials and their gunmen. They are forcing us to provide buses by tomorrow else they (officials) will occupy our vehicles on their own. When the vehicles are booked now, how can we return the money?", asked another operator.

Mini Bus Operator Association president JS Grewal said that he was getting calls from officials as well as the operators.

"We are in a tight situation. If we deny buses to the ruling party, we will land ourselves in trouble, at the same time the operators do not want to return the advance money taken from the Congress leaders. Rs 4,000 for a mini bus is sufficient amount offered by the Congress and we don't want to run into losses by accepting a second offer", said Grewal. 



Roadways employees burn effigy of director
To hold rally in Chief Minister’s Assembly constituency on April 7
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, March 21
Employees of the Punjab Roadways, Jagraon, held a gate rally in support of their pending demands at the Punjab Roadways Jagraon depot this morning. A large number of Punjab Roadways employees took part in the rally organised by the action committee of the Punjab Government Transport Workers Union.

The protestors also burnt an effigy of the State Transport Director. The union leaders also announced that they would hold a rally at Lambi, the constituency of Chief Minister Punjab Parkash Singh Badal in support of their demands, in the first week of April.

Addressing the gathering, the speakers criticised the state government and transport department for ignoring various genuine demands of the employees. He said that though the union had been raising demands since a long time, the government had paid no heed to them as a result the union had decided to hold a rally at Lambi.

The employees’ demands include promotion of senior employees as per rules, raising medical allowance, rolling back accident claims imposed on drivers and regularising the part time employees etc.

According to Jagraon branch president Amrik Singh Mika, since the government had failed to fulfil the demands of employees, the action committee had chalked out a strategy to hold statewide protests in the coming days. He said the union would protest at the Chief Minister’s Assembly constituency Lambi on April 7, 2011.



Filling of Vacant Posts
Agitating students perturbed over letters sent to parents
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 21
Agitating students of Punjab Agriculture University (PAU) here, who are "struggling" to get the vacant posts filled in the state Agriculture Department are perturbed over the recent letters sent by the authorities to their parents.

The students said that letters sent by the Dean, Postgraduate Studies to their homes were uncalled for, as the authorities had adopted a "pick and choose" policy to target certain students. The striking students maintained, had there been any "indiscipline" or "unlawful" activity by students, the letters should have been sent to all the students but the authorities had "threatened" just a few to put pressure on the entire student community.

The letter reads, "It is for your kind information that a Master's student is required to fulfil 80 per cent lectures both in teaching and research to be eligible to pass. It is in the interest of your son to be regular in the studies and not to indulge in any unlawful activity on the campus".

Punjab Agriculture University Students' Association (PAUSA) president Ravinder Singh Randhawa said that the university had no right to disturb peace of mind of their parents. "Till date we have been disciplined, still the authorities blame us for being unlawful. We have a democratic right to fight for our genuine demand. If the authorities have any problem with students, the letters should have been sent to all students studying at the university.

Why have they chosen just four to five students? These are all pressure tactics but we are not going to bow to them", said Randhawa.

It may be mentioned that after receiving letters, certain panic-gripped parents came to the university to meet the authorities and their wards. This has disturbed the agitating students. "Why are they troubling our parents? We are all fighting for a common demand. We will raise the issue with the authorities", said another student Navdeep Singh.

The students gathered outside Thapar Hall to meet the authorities. Randhawa claimed, "The authorities have assured that they will not send any letter to our parents on this issue".



22 contestants jump into poll fray
Our Legal Correspondent

Ludhiana, March 21
The election scenario is gaining momentum in the district courts complex with 22 lawyers filing nomination papers for the annual elections of the District Bar Association (DBA) scheduled for April 1. The scrutiny of the nomination papers will be conducted on March 22.

Ashok Mittal, former secretary of the DBA, and Parupkar Singh Ghumman, former president of association, have filed nomination papers for the coveted post of president. Gurkirpal Singh Gill and Ankur Ghai have staked their claims for the post of secretary.

Four lawyers, including JS Miglani, Surinder Moudgill, Vijay Sharma and SP Sharma, have filed nomination papers for the post of vice-president. Sandeep Sharma, Suresh Kapoor and Sanjeev Sharma have filed their nominations for the post of finance secretary. Gurmohan Singh Shera, Pankaj Makkar and Deepak Khullar have filed nomination papers for the post of joint secretary.

Eight lawyers, including Vishally Monia Sharma, Rupinder Pal Singh, Amandeep Pal Singh, Vyom Bansal, Karun Jindal, Sanjeev Sharma, Achint Sood and Amandeep Singh, are in the fray for six posts of executive members. 



From Schools & Colleges

Ludhiana: Little VIP's Pre-school inaugurated its first branch in Sector 39 near Mohini Resorts, Chandigarh road, today. Learning aids have been imported from the UK.

To break the monotony of generic classroom, every classroom has themes like jungle, aqua room, theatre room and masti room.

Farewll party

Synetic Business School organised a farewell party for final year students on Monday. Students participated in various activities like solo and group dances, games and modell. Anita and Surinder were declared Miss and Mr SBS Farewell, respectively. Dr MA Zahir, chairman of the institute, appreciated the efforts of students .—TNS



Students go without midday meal
n Dept fails to release funds n Teachers spend from their own pockets to sustain scheme
Mahesh Sharma

Mullanpur Dakha, March 21
Thousands of students of government primary and elementary schools did not get food under the Midday Meal Scheme for weeks as the school authorities expressed their inability to provide the same.

Even though there was enough material to prepare the meals, the authorities said they had not received funds to pay the wages to cooks and purchase miscellaneous items, including cooking gas cylinders.

Though none of the heads of the schools agreed to comment on the issue, teachers undertaking preparation and serving of meals disclosed that officials at the BPEO office had sent verbal 'orders' to stop the midday meal facility till further instructions.

Admitting scarcity of funds, the district in charge of the Midday Meal Scheme, Tarsem Singh Banga, claimed he had sought report on the expenses incurred by in-charges of various schools so that pending bills were cleared.

Referring to information received from heads of various schools, Banga said some teachers had spent thousands of rupees from their own pockets to sustain the scheme.

Investigations by Ludhiana Tribune revealed that the authorities at a majority of government primary and elementary schools had suspended the midday meal scheme at their schools after March 1.

As no formal announcement was made to suspend the scheme, students - most of them from poor families - had to do without meals during these days. Besides, there are many students whose parents do not prepare breakfast at home due to persistent penury and who come to school expecting a stomach full of food.

According to an estimate, more than `1.5 lakh had been spent from the pockets of teachers for preparing meals for around 2,000 students under the scheme during the past two months. The situation resulted in further decline in both the quantity as well as quality of meals being served to students.

Teachers have spent

Teachers of government schools at Mullanpur village spent `15,146, in Dakha `24,454, Adda Dakha
`36,220, Kailpur `11,279), Waraich Rs 4,039), Bhanohar `15,604, Pamal `6,599, Pamali ` 6,714, Gahaur `13,707 and Detwal `13,234. 



land Division of PAU, GADVASU
Step-motherly treatment being meted out to farm varsity: PAUTA
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 21
While the Punjab government has constituted a committee under the Punjab Chief Secretary for the reallocation/division of land of PAU and GADVASU, the Punjab Agricultural University Teachers Association (PAUTA) has resented the move.

Prof GS Saroa, Prof Harmit Singh and Prof KS Sangha of PAUTA in a joint statement today stated that the matter of division of assets was discussed at length in the university and subsequently at various levels by the Punjab government.

The assets have been divided in a ratio of 70:30.

PAUTA members said, “A step-motherly treatment is being meted out to Punjab Agricultural University. Although the assets have been divided in the above mentioned ratio, the university has to deal with the liabilities (for example-deficit in GPF/CPF accounts and the pension of the retirees of GADVASU).”

They added that they were taken aback by the attitude of the local MLA Harish Rai Dhanda. “We feel bad when someone portraits PAU in a bad light in terms of performance. PAUTA will not let the state government appease GADVASU at the expense of PAU,” said Prof Sangha.

The matter regarding the bifurcation of PAU is pending in the Supreme Court of India. “Since the matter is sub-judice, PAUTA appeals to the state government and all officials concerned to keep a status quo in this matter,” said the PAU faculty members.



13 selected in placement drive

Mandi Gobindgarh, March 21
HCL Comnet, Gurgaon, selected 13 students offering a package of Rs 2.75 lakh per annum during a placement drive at RIMT, Mandi Gobindgarh, recently. RIMT Group vice-chairman Vijayant Bansal gave offer letters to the selected students.

RIMT-MAEC principal, Dr Sahib Sartaj expressed satisfaction over the placement drive and said more software and hardcore engineering companies would be visiting the campus for placement, as the training and placement department is working closely with all leading engineering firms and continuously exploring opportunities for fresh engineers passing out in 2011.

Training and placement officer Sanjay Sharma said the selected candidates would be appointed as the graduate engineer trainee. Placements director Sanjeev Erry said students had to undergo a training session on the pattern of test and interview taken by the company, along with their theory course.



Vehicle lifter gang busted, two held
Chronic addicits who have been in the trade just to buy drugs 
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 21
With the arrest of two youths, the PAU police has claimed to have busted a gang of vehicle lifters who had spread panic in the posh localities of the city with their repeated strikes. The police has recovered three stolen bikes from their possession.

The suspects have been identified as Rohit Kumar, resident of Durgapuri and Rahul Kumar, a resident of Maya Nagar, while three of their accomplices, namely Chikna, Chhota Kabootar and one unknown are still absconding.

While giving information, Inspector Beant Juneja, SHO of PAU police station said the suspects were in their mid- 20s and were chronic drug addicts. “They used to steal vehicles just to buy drugs,” the SHO stated.

Two of the bikes recovered from their possession were stolen from Green Park and Shastri Nagar areas around a month ago.“They told us that they were not sure as to from where they had stolen the third bike as they were under heavy influence of drugs,” said Juneja. The accused were notorious for criminal activities and were previously booked for thefts and snatching cases registered against them at Haibowal police station.The duo was arrested following a tip off from the Rishi Nagar area. The raids are being conducted to nab their other three accomplices.



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