L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


3 dead, 2 hurt as speeding car rams into trailer
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 2
Three people died and two injured after an overspeeding car collided with a stationary sand trolley on Hambran Road late on Sunday night. The victims, identified as Akshay Kumar, 32, Mukim Ansari, 29, and Yadwinder Singh, 30, residents of the city’s Chander Nagar, Choti Haibowal and Gopal Nagar localities, respectively, died on the spot.

The injured - Vinay Kumar, who sustained minor injuries, and Ramesh Kumar - were rushed to the Dayanand Medical College & Hospital. The latter suffered multiple fractures and, according to hospital officials, his condition is stated to be serious.

The fatal mishap occurred at around 11: 45 pm on Sunday when the five friends were returning home after having dinner at an eatery. According to sources close to the police, all the five had had alcoholic drinks at a tavern before driving back home.

“Vinay had invited his friends to dinner to celebrate his purchase of a new car two days ago”, said Naresh Kumar, Ramesh’s brother.

Yadwinder Singh, who was driving the vehicle, lost control of the wheel and rammed into a street divider near the Govind Gou Dham chowk. The car then collided with the trolley laden with sand, which was parked on a side of the street. The impact was so strong that three of the car’s occupants died instantly.

Area residents as well as those in vehicles passing by rushed to the scene and extricated the two injured men from the car, taking them to the hospital. A resident said the vehicle was being driven at high speed due to which the driver lost control.

According to an eyewitness said the victims were in an inebriated condition when the accident occurred. Vinay, who escaped with minor injuries, informed the families of the deceased about the mishap.



Pall of gloom descends 
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 2
According to relatives of the three dead victims, the latter had no plans to celebrate any occasion and were relaxing at home. “It was Vinay who called up the other four and invited them to a party. Akshay didn’t appear interested and wanted to stay home, but Vinay, Ramesh, Mukim and Yadwinder arrived at his house and persuaded him to accompany them. Had I known he would never come back alive I’d have never let him go,” said Parkash Chand, Akshay’s father.

Gurdev Singh (in turban), father of Yadwinder Singh, and Parkash Chand (extreme right), father of Akshay Kumar, grieve outside a police station in Ludhiana.
Gurdev Singh (in turban), father of Yadwinder Singh, and Parkash Chand (extreme right), father of Akshay Kumar, grieve outside a police station in Ludhiana. A Tribune photograph

Relatives were seen wailing over the untimely demise of the three men who died in the prime of their life. Akshay Kumar’s wife was not informed about the mishap. “My daughter in-law is too young to bear the tragedy. She has lost the family’s sole breadwinner at such an early stage. I just have no idea how she’ll manage to raise her little children,” said Parkash Chand, Akshay’s father.

Akshay leaves behind a daughter, Manya, and son, Dev.

Mukim Ansari’s wife, who was looking after their six-month-old daughter when she was told about the accident, is no less unfortunate. A hand embroider by profession, Ansari was a native of Bihar and had come to the city a few years ago to look for work.

The third dead victim, Yadwinder Singh, who was driving the vehicle, married recently. According to his father, Gurdev Singh, it was his addiction to alcohol that created problems in the family.


Hambran Road a deathtrap
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 2
The latest accident to occur near the Golf Link apartments on the Hambran Road has again highlighted the plight of commuters with the increase in fatalities in road accidents. With no indicator or streetlight, the stretch has become a virtual deathtrap.

Several accidents have taken place on this stretch. But the authorities appear to be waiting for some more tragedies to occur before they get their act together.

Later during the day, residents protested against the parking of sand-laden trailers that have become a major traffic hazard.

“The parking of these trailers has become a major traffic hurdle. Drivers leave the trailers in the middle of the road at night and take the tractors home. The trailers, with no indicators on the rear, have become the cause of frequent accidents,” said Inderbhan Kakka, a resident of the area who rescued the injured.

Relatives of the victims complained that due to pitch dark conditions, the victims could not see the trailer and rammed the car into it. “Had the trailer not been parked in the middle of the road, my child would have been alive,” said Parkash Chand, father of Akshay Kumar.

As the traffic on the stretch is increasing, the administration is not making efforts to install delineators and indicators on the road. Further, no action has been taken against the sand mafia, which leaves the trailers on the road.

On March 27, a speeding Tempo Trax collided with a motorcycle, resulting in the death of two persons. The victims were identified as Jasvir Singh (35) and Rashpal Singh (50), both residents of Hambran Road, who were returning home from work.

In January, eight persons were injured in a pile-up when three cars and a motorcycle collided with one another on the same spot.



Car hits tree, 25-yr-old youth killed
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, May 2
A 25-year-old youth died when a Maruti Swift car (PB 25 D-0076) he was driving hit a tree near Government Science College on the Raikot Road here today. The deceased has been identified as Gurinder Singh, alias Gindi, a resident of Moga.

The youth was driving the car on a very high speed when he lost control over the vehicle, which rammed into the tree. The impact of the collision was such that the car was cut into two pieces from the front. The youth died on the spot.

The police reached the spot and pulled the deceased out of the car with the help of a few passersby. The police and people had to use a tractor and a truck for pulling the car that had fused with the tree trunk. In the process, even the tree got uprooted.

The youth had come to meet a few of his relatives at Sawadi Khurad village near Jagraon. The ill-fated car belonged to Avtar Singh, the relative of the deceased, to whom he had come to meet.

The body has been sent for a post-mortem examination. The deceased was the only son of his parents. 



Using autos, not ambulances, to ferry accident victims
Jaswant Shetra

Jagraon, May 2
Accident victims are being shifted to hospitals in autorickshaws. Two such instances were witnessed during recent accidents that occurred within a week.

In an accident on April 26 at the railway overbridge here, Pawanpal Kaur of Chajjawal village had died while her brother Harbgah Singh was seriously injured after their motorcycle was hit by a truck. The deceased as well as the injured were rushed to hospital in an autorickshaw.

In an accident which occurred late last evening, a youth lost his life when the Maruti Swift car he was driving rammed into a tree. The deceased, identified as Gurinder Singh of Moga, was brought to the Civil Hospital in an autorickshaw.

This has happened despite the disposal of three ambulances with the police. Besides there are several highway patrolling vehicles, but these only cater to the Ludhiana-Ferozepur national highway.

Though ferrying accident victims in private vehicles or autorickshaws could help them get timely medical aid, but it could prove dangerous as autorickshaws are not comfortable and may cause more damage to victims.

The police present at the spot during yesterday’s accident said though it did call the Civil Hospital for an ambulance, it did not arrive for half an hour. So, it was forced to take the deceased to the hospital in an autorickshaw. “The youth had died and it did not matter if he was taken to hospital in an autorickshaw or an ambulance,” a police official said.

Kanwaljit Singh Khanna, secretary of Inqulabi Kendra Punjab, has criticised the local administration for carrying victims in such vehicles. He said it reflected the casual approach of the administration, particularly the health department.

Nobody called us: SMO

Nobody called the hospital for an ambulance yesterday. The hospital has only one ambulance and we have to use it to carry our patients. But we will enquire if someone called for the ambulance and did not get a response. — Dr Amrit Kaur, Senior Medical Officer, Jagraon Civil Hospital

Patrol vehicles only for NH

Highway patrol vehicles only cater to accident victims on national highways. I recently sent a proposal to the higher authorities to extend this service to other roads connecting Jagraon with towns like Raikot and Sidhwan Bet, which have heavy flow of traffic. I have also contacted some NGOs to provide an ambulance to deploy it at Main Chowk of Jagraon for the benefit of accident victims on other roads.  — Gursharan Sandhu, SSP Ludhiana (rural) 



IAS officer appointed acting PAU VC
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 2
At their meeting held in Chandigarh on Monday, members of the management board of Panjab Agricultural University decided to appoint Navreet Singh Kang, a senior IAS officer who is state financial commissioner (development) as the varsity’s acting vice chancellor to replace Manjit Singh Kang, whose four-year term expired on April 30. According to sources, he will be hold charge till the time the Punjab government makes a permanent appointment for the prestigious post.

Welcoming the move, the senior vice-president of the PAU Employees Union said it would be in the interest of the varsity. "PAU has been facing a financial crunch. At the beginning of every month employees including the teaching staff as well as pensioners etc begin feeling insecure about getting their salaries or pensions. For securing grants to pay them PAU has to send repeated reminders to the state government. With the financial commissioner becoming the varsity’s acting head we expect the situation will definitely improve”.

Meanwhile, the university’s faculty members were tight-lipped over disclosing the name of acting VC. The employees were seen calling the "well-connected" to know the outcome of Monday’s meeting.

Speaking on condition of anonymity, an employee at the vice-chancellor’s office told The Tribune: "We knew the government would appoint someone as acting vice-chancellor as the former VC had relinquished charge on April 30. We have been told the new incumbent will come here only twice or thrice a week to clear files. We hope a permanent vice-chancellor is appointed as soon as possible for the university’s good”.

It may be mentioned here that the government is expected to make a permanent appointment by the end of this month as the last date of inviting applications by eligible candidates for the vice-chancellor’s position is May 5.



Relief for former Cong councillor
4 booked for implicating him in a murderous assault case
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 2
In a major relief for former Congress councillor Satwinder Singh Jawaddi, facing murderous assault charges, the police has booked four persons, owing allegiances to Tanvir Dhaliwal, for falsely implicating the former Congress councillor in murderous assault case.

The accused identified as Amandeep Singh, alias Assa, Bhavneet Singh aka Micky, Harjit Singh and Avtar Singh.

The police has booked them all under Section 182 of the IPC for falsely implicating the councillor in a fake murderous assault case.

The accused have been booked for stage managing the shootout and giving false information to the police and registering a counter case.

According to police, Assa, Bhavneet, Harjit and Avtar had shot one of their accomplices and levelled false allegation against Congress councillor, following which the police had booked him under Section 307 of the IPC.

The Special Investigation Team (SIT), led by ADCP- I Harsh Bansal, ADCP- III KS Sidhu, ACP (W) Raj Kumar and SHO Sarabha Nagar were investigating the case.

During investigation, the man who sustained bullet injury and levelled allegation on Jawaddi, confessed before the police that Assa, Bhavneet, Harjit and Avtar had stage-managed the incident to filed a counter case against Jawaddi.

It was on the September 21, 2010, when the political rivalry took a bloody turn and Akali municipal councillor’s men allegedly opened fire on brother of a former Congress party councillor and his supporters, leaving five injured and one serious, outside Chhevi Patshahi Gurdwara in Jwaddi Kalan.

Rajwinder Singh, brother of former councillor Jawaddi, the latter’s nephew, Harpreet Singh Harry and his aides Gopal Mahajan, Rajesh Mahajan and Gurminder Singh Lucky had sustained injuries in the shootout.

Following the statement of Gopal Mahajan, Akali councillor Tanvir Dhaliwal, Avtar Singh, Assa, Jass, Bandeep Singh, Jagdeesh, Sukhdev Saddi, Kuldeep singh and some unidentified persons were booked by the police.

But before Jawaddi could file a case, the accused shot one of their men and filed a counter case against the former councillor.

No arrests have been made so far. 



Embroiders mint money using pirated software
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 2
From faking logos of international brand to hacking software, city-based embroidery traders are indulging in the unethical trade, giving scant regards to the law of the land.

Not only the embroiderers are racking huge moolah, they are ripping off state exchequer through evading various taxes.

In a latest incident, Vinod Jain, who was running his embroidery business in New Madhopuri area, was nabbed by the police for using pirated cracked software thereby causing a loss of nearly Rs 1.75 lakh to the company.

Initially, the cops were taking the matter lightly, but company officials have claimed that over 1,000 embroidery machines in the city alone were being operated on fake software.

According to Sumeet Grover, country head of Wings CAD (India) Pvt Ltd, the embroiders of the city were causing a loss of Rs 17 crore to the company by using fake software instead of purchasing the licensed software.

During the investigation, the police found that Vinod Jain’s business was just a tip of an iceberg as there were several big fishes which were minting money by using fake software.

The arrest had pulled a lid of a thriving gang of programmers who were experts in hacking original software and cracking the security code of the company.

Such designers have mushroomed in every nook and corner of the city, including Bhadurke road, Madhopuri, Shiv Puri, Sunder Nagar and Chhawni Mohalla.

Sumeet said, “The designers, in order to make quick bucks, provide pirated software to the embroiderers. Not only they are doing cheating, the embroiderers are causing a huge loss to the state exchequer.”

He added that embroiderers put their business at risk in order to avoid paying various taxes. “We pay VAT and import duty on the purchase of each software of the company that cost Rs 1.75 lakh, on the other hand embroiderers arrange the pirated software for anything between Rs 2,000 and 15,000 causing a loss to the public exchequer.”

Vinod Jain was also using such pirated cracked version on his imported multi-header embroidery machines.

During the time of raid the cops were shocked to see that the embroiderer was not only using the pirated software, but he was also embroidering the fake logos of some of the biggest multinational branded apparel companies.

Confirming the development Jaitinder Singh SHO, Jodhewal, said: “The accused was using the pirated software of Wings CAD (India) Pvt Ltd. The case has been registered under Sections 63 and 63-B of the Copyright Act, 1957. Vinod Jain was arrested and sent on judicial remand.”

Sumeet said, “More information is being carried out regarding such piracy so that legal tab on all such embroidery units can be maintained with the help of the local police.”

He added that without the active participation of the police, the accused could not have been nabbed. 

The dirty business

The software company Wings CAD (India) Pvt Ltd provide a dongle key and a CD to operate the original software, which costs nearly Rs 1.75 lakh. The embroiderers are using the private version of the software available for anything between Rs 2,000 and 15,000 



Compensation to riot victims
Sikh migrants slam Punjab govt for apathy
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, May 2
The Ludhiana Sikh Migrants Welfare Board has slammed the state government for its indifference towards the victims of the anti-Sikh riots of 1983, who were still waiting for their promised compensation and rehabilitation measures even after 28 years of suffering.

Board chairman Kartar Singh Patna alleged that ever since the Centre announced a compensation package for riot victims in June, 2008, the callous state government and respective district authorities had disbursed relief grant of Rs 2 lakh each to some 12,000 riot-affected families out of the 22,000 intended beneficiaries.

“Even out of the amount that was disbursed to riot victims, crores of rupees were misappropriated by certain corrupt officials and self-styled leaders of riot victims.”

He added that the Centre had extended the deadline for the disbursement of compensation to riot victims four times from June, 2008. Now, one last opportunity had been given to the beneficiaries from March 13 to May 13, 2011 to get their rejected files scrutinised and substantiate their claims.

“However, the administration kept dragging its feet for almost one and half months and it was only in the last week of April that the Greater Ludhiana Area Development Authority (the nodal agency for disbursement of relief package) issued a public notice seeking documentary proof and other clarifications from claimants till May 5 for final settlement of claims,” Patna stated.

He wondered if the state government and the administration would be able to meet the deadline (May 13), which perhaps had been extended for the last time.

The scrutinised files were to be sent to the the relief and rehabilitation department of the state government at Chandigarh after May 5, and the grants were supposed to be disbursed by May 13, which appeared difficult, if not impossible, he added.

Patna appealed to the state government and the administration to put an end to the harassment of riot victims who had already undergone immense physical and mental trauma. He said if the government failed to deliver cheques for Rs 2 lakh each to the remaining eligible riot-affected families by the due date, the board would resort to agitation.

“We might start an indefinite dharna at GLADA office here from May 6 if the pending files are not cleared by that date and compensation package is not disbursed to the claimants.”



No semester system in BCom
Assn terms PU’s decision unfortunate

Ludhiana, May 2
The Punjab Commerce and Management Association has termed the decision of Panjab University of not implementing semester system in commerce stream from 2011-12 unfortunate and not in the interest of students.

President of the association Dr Dharminder Singh Ubha said if global competence was to be brought among students, semester system was the need of the hour.

Executive vice-president of the PCMA Dr Ashwani Bhalla, who is also secretary of the faculty of business management and commerce, Panjab University, Chandigarh, said Panjab University had a history to take lead in implementing the world-class curriculum in courses, but somehow a few principals of rural colleges as well as aided colleges were not understanding the need of students and citing fund shortage, declaration of results and shortage of staff as the reasons behind the non-implementation of the semester system. Dr Bhalla said all rural and aided colleges were getting grants from the University Grants Commission under various schemes in the name of rural colleges and modernisation of education, but these institutions were not ready to implement the policies of the UGC. — TNS



World Asthma Day Today
Doctors at loggerheads
Allopathic doctors challenge claims of homoeopaths in curing asthma
Anshu Seth
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 2
Allopathic and homeopathic doctors are at loggerheads following homeopaths’ claim for having a permanent cure for asthma, which has been challenged by allopathic doctors. They have termed it as false and misleading.

The allopathic experts have alleged that magical remedies and claims of professionals of alternative medicine for having a permanent cure for asthma is “dangerous” for patients’ lives as is evident from the acute asthmatic attacks in the absence of medication. These asthmatic attacks, on numerous occasions, also result in deaths, if the patient fails to get timely emergency medication, a group of allopathic doctors practicing pulmonary medicine at leading city hospitals pointed out.

Dr Jagdeep Whig, vice-principal, and head, department of pulmonary medicine, Dayanand Medical College and Hospital (DMCH), stated a resent case wherein a schoolgirl died due to the lack of medication following a severe asthmatic attack. “In another case, a 21-year-old youth had to be put on ventilator on April 30th as he, too, had failed to stick to inhalation which is very important during the change of weather,” said Dr Vig.

“The children and wives of some noted homeopaths are coming to us for asthma management and in some cases people discontinue with the allopathic medicine, instead go for magical remedies of fish-gulping in Hyderabad but return with an aggravated condition,” said Dr Vig.

There were roughly 2.5 crore cases of asthma in India in 2001, which is likely to increase by another 50 per cent by 2016.

However, the allopathic as well as the homeopathic experts are of the view that dust mites found in beds, carpets, sofas, and curtains is an important allergen. Similarly, the grass pollen, fungal pollen, dogs, cats, cockroaches and rodents also act as allergens and stressed upon the fact that asthma can be effectively controlled in most patients.

Dr Daljit Singh, principal and professor of paediatrics, DMCH, stated that bronchial asthma, which commonly affects both children and adults, begins at any age. But, about 50 per cent of affected individuals develop this disease before the age of 10 and another 30 per cent before the age of 40. While, Dr Sandeep Puri, pointed towards the wrong diagnoses and poor management of asthma as the cause behind “alarming conditions” in asthmatic patients. “Inhalers are the best medicine to control asthma without any side effect even if they are taken lifelong,” said Dr Puri.

Global Scenario

At least 57,000 people have died due to asthma in 2004 worldwide. Eighty per cent of these are from developing and underdeveloped countries. “Random survey of adult population in western countries indicates that it is 2 to 6 per cent and in children (Five to 11years) 10 to 15 per cent. On an average, out of 30 children in a classroom, three are likely to have asthma.

Definite Cure

Allopathy does not have the cure for allergy which is the root cause of asthma. Whereas we have a definite cure for allergies in homeopathy as we treat the patient according to the symptoms. Seasonal asthmatic cases are cured within three to four months while status asthmatics and the time to cure asthma caused by pollens, dust, eatables and other allergens, varies from weeks to a few years. I have cured cases of asthma in all age groups — Dr Vishvanath Sood, city-based homeopath


”You Can Control Your Asthma”, the theme for this year’s World Asthma Day observed on May 3 also points towards the fact that asthma could be controlled but not cured. 



Non-Use of Punjabi at Rly Stations
Upset, NGOs write to CM
Our Correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh, May 2
Upset over alleged intolerance of Railway authorities towards use of Punjabi language at almost all railway stations of the region, office- bearers and activists of a few organisations of the area have urged higher authorities, including Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal, to impress upon the Railways to implement trilingual system of conversation and communication at all railway stations in the state.

(Top) NGOs want railway station signboard; and time table (below) to be written in Punjabi at Mandi Ahmedgarh.

(Top) NGOs want railway station signboard; and time table (below) to be written in Punjabi at Mandi Ahmedgarh. Photos: Mahesh Sharma

Maintaining that some display boards had been written in Punjabi, too, officials at various railway stations showed ignorance about provision of communication in regional language besides English and Hindi.

Contrary to expectations of those travelling by train, use of Punjabi was conspicuous by absence at majority of railways stations functioning in the region. What to talk of using Gurmukhi for communicating important information among passengers and those visiting residents to receive their relatives or friends, even verbal announcements are not made in Punjabi.

“We fail to understand why they stick to English and Hindi only while making important announcements. Majority of listeners don’t understand these languages. Less educated people coming from villages have to depend upon others for knowing details about the train they want to board,” said Tarsem Garg, an office-bearer of the CB Welfare Association.

Referring to information collected from various railways stations on the Ludhiana-Dhuri railway line, Jagjit Singh Jajjie, patron, Kalgidhar Federation, regretted that none of the timetable and fare table boards was written in Punjabi.

“Besides disgracing our mother tongue, this tendency results in slowing down of work at ticket window as majority of passengers don’t know the actual fair for station of their destination. Had the fair table and timetable been written in Punjabi a large number of passengers could have arranged exact amount of money for purchasing tickets for particular station,” said Jaggie. 



Fight Against Drug Addiction
Chain fast by Youth Cong continues
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, May 2
The ongoing chain strike by the Punjab Youth Congress (PYC) entered the second day with 50 party activists sitting on strike today as well.

Ravnit Singh Bittu, president of the state unit of the Punjab Youth Congress and a Lok Sabha member from Anandpur Sahib, who is spearheading the agitation to focus on the menace of widespread drug addiction in Punjab, continued his fast for the second day today.

Bittu said: “No one from the government or the administration has approached the party. The Chief Minister shall at least acknowledge the cause for which we are on chain fast and show his intention to take steps for making Punjab a drug-free state.”

Maintaining that negative effect of drug addiction, alcohol and other intoxicating substances was already visible, Bittu called upon Chief Minister to set up a “Drug Prevention Board” which ought to create awareness at various levels and evolve an effective mechanism to wean the youth away from drugs.

“With rampant drug abuse in Punjab, no wonder Punjabi youth fail to get job as most of them fail to qualify the physical fitness tests that are conducted from time to time by the Army, paramilitary forces and the state police,” Bittu said.

He reiterated that the Youth Congress was agitating for a social cause, which ought not be politicised. He urged all parties, including the ruling coalition, to take this movement to a conclusive end in the larger interest of the state, especially the Punjabi youth. The government should accept the demand for setting up a drug prevention board and a house committee (of the state assembly). 



City Bus Service
Tewari asks Centre to intervene
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, May 2
Ludhiana MP and the national spokesperson of the Indian National Congress Manish Tewari has urged the Union Urban Development Minister Kamal Nath to ask the Punjab government to introduce the City Bus Service, which has got delayed by several years, at the earliest,. He has also urged the minister to ensure that the buses run on CNG fuel.

In a letter to the Union minister, Tewari said the Union Urban Development Ministry, under the Jawahar National Urban Renewal Mission (JNURM), had provided Rs 65.20 crore to the Ludhiana Municipal Corporation for running the local bus service. Although the money was received about a year ago, but the Municipal Corporation has not started the service as yet.

Tewari brought to the notice of Kamal Nath that the city not only needs a mass public transport system as it is the most populated city in the North after Delhi, but is also the most polluted one. Hence, it is imperative that the local bus service, whenever it starts, be run on CNG fuel only.

He said, recently the government had decided to run air-conditioned bus service for ferrying people within the city. 



Neelon bridge stretch fraught with risk
Mohit Khanna/TNS

Ludhiana, May 2
Numerous people have lost their lives due to the traffic chaos between the Neelon Bridge and Ludhiana over the past one-year. The accident-prone spots on this 20-km “killer stretch” are Katani Mor, Ram Garh, Munidian Kalan, Jamalpur and the Samrala Chowk. Records obtained from the Ludhiana traffic police reveal that in 2010 about 350 road accidents were reported. At least 226 people had died in Ludhiana and 25 on this stretch alone.

Parking of heavy vehicles on the roadside has led to the rise in accidents on the GT Road. Residents accuse the administration and the police of laxity while dealing with the situation. A few blame poor traffic sense and increasing number of SUVs on the roads for such mishaps. “These days a large number of people drive heavy vehicles at breakneck speed. Major accidents have been reported in the past a few months due to this,” Dr Soi said.

However, a few victims allege that accidents are taking place due to the absence of traffic police personnel on these stretches. “Most of the time, the traffic is streamlined only when a VIP comes to the city. All traffic police officials are forced to rush to a particular stretch from where these VIPs have to pass. Thus, rest of the places remains neglected.

However, the study conducted by Dr Kamaljit Soi and his team points that most of the accidental deaths have taken place either due to engineering faults or human errors. Violation of traffic rules is another major cause for accidental deaths, besides lack of enforcement. Enforcement agencies don’t have speed radars to the check the speed as well as breadth analyzers to check alcohol contents in case of drunken driving. Offenders are freely flouting the rules at will leading to accidents and deaths. Thus, these are the two main reasons for road mishaps, over speeding and driving under the influence of liquor.



AIEEE Paper-leak
Students, parents feel cheated
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 2
After AIEEE paper leak yesterday in Lucknow, students from the city who had gone to different centres to take the exam, feel shattered and dejected. Terming the particular incident as “crime”, students said it had played with their sentiments and they felt cheated.

Shivansh SinglaTalking to The Tribune, Shivansh Singla, a student of BCM School, said he had opted for Jalandhar as exam centre. He was accompanied with both his parents as latter wanted to provide moral support to the child.

“We reached there on time. There were mixed feelings among students. They were excited, tense and confused. When we were standing outside the examination centre, we heard that paper had been leaked. But I was not bothered thinking that must be a rumour. But when students were officially informed about it, they felt cheated and dejected.

Without any fault of ours, we were being punished. Thank God, I was accompanied by my parents, who were there to boost my morale,” he said.

Vaishali JollyAnother student from DAV Public School Vaishali Jolly said students were mentally prepared to take the exam in the morning. But when they came to know that the paper was to start three hours later, students were restless. “Those three hours were tiring. There was no place to sit or stand. Accompanied by my uncle, I sat under a shady tree. We didn’t feel like having anything. Though my relatives stay in Chandigarh, but I didn’t go there as my centre was in Panchkula. I was scared and desperate,” said Jolly.

SK GargDisturbed over the mental trauma caused to his son yesterday due to AIEEE paper-leak, SK Garg, father of an AIEEE aspirant, said criminals should be hanged to death. “They played with the sentiments of innocent minds. The punishment has to be strong, conveying a straight message that no non-sense will be tolerated. In ancient times during the regime of Ashoka- the Emperor, the laws were so strict that everyone knew if they stole things, their arms would be cut. We need to enforce such punishments to curb unethical practices,” rued the parent.

Kashish GuptaKashish Gupta, another student from Tagore Public School said he had lost faith in results, too. “The way the paper was leaked, results will also be manipulated. There is another paper on May 8 for students who were to sit for another examination (AFMC). If they get easy paper, our merit will suffer and in case they get a tough question paper, we will be benefitted. They have made mockery of the system,” complained Gupta.

Naresh Puri Another parent Naresh Puri said his daughter was, too disheartened after the exam, so the entire family decided to take her to some place where she could relax a bit. “We have come to Dehradun and we are motivating her not to be discouraged. It was a harrowing experience for students as well as their parents,” said Puri.

Sulesh AggarwalSulesh Aggarwal, father of Ashim Aggarwal, who accompanied his son to Chandigarh said at one time, he felt helpless to control his son’s emotions. “He was so disturbed and scared. He said he had prepared well for the exam, but after the paper leak, he felt cheated,” said Aggarwal.

AshimAshim said he didn’t want to recall those moments. “I want to forget the whole episode like a bad dream. Now, I can recall that a guy standing next to me was talking on the phone saying if that paper was changed, he will not be able to perform again. I didn’t pay attention to what he said. But later I realised that particular student must be knowing about the paper leak. We tried to find him but we failed,” he said.



Mayor-Councillor Spat
Bains fails to attend sangat darshan
Kuldip Bhatia

Ludhiana, May 2
In yet another dramatic turn of events in the ongoing tussle between the City Mayor Hakam Singh Giaspura and SAD-B councillor Simarjit Singh Bains, the latter missed his date with the weekly sangat darshan at Zone C here today.

The room allotted to Bains in Zone C office of the Municipal Corporation on Gill road, which was sealed on the directions of the Mayor, a few days ago, has been restored to the councillor.

A high drama was witnessed at the Zone C office this morning, as everyone was waiting for the arrival of the councillor, who was in the eye of the storm after the suspension of Zonal Commissioner Amarjit Singh Sekhon, subsequent to his arrest by vigilance bureau in a corruption case, a few days ago.

The police was deployed at the MC Zonal office, as the civic administration apprehended a show of strength by Bains.

Giaspura and his supporters not only mobilised the civic employees against the councillor, who belonged to their own party, but lodged a complaint with the Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal, who has asked for a report on the case involving the arrest of the Zonal Commissioner.

The room allotted to Bains in the MC zonal office to attend to persons of his ward was first sealed and later, when it was re-opened, a name plate of the MC Commissioner AK Sinha was put up.

Bains, who is one of the two main accused in the assault on a tehsildar, and remained in jail for almost one year, hit back in his style.

Nominated as in charge of the Youth Akali Dal in the city by the party chief and Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Badal, Bains showed to every one that he was a forced to reckon within the party affairs.

On Friday, Sukhbir Badal, during a visit to the city, went to Bains’s house and spent time with him, which changed the entire scene.

Choosing not to get involved in the faction fighting, the MC administration swiftly removed the name plate of the commissioner from the room where Bains holds his weekly sangat darshan and reportedly decided not to stop his entry to the room.

Bains said he regretted the inconvenience caused to the people for not being able to attend MC zonal office today because he had to be at Punjab and Haryana High Court.

“From next week I will be available to people for all works related to the civic body in Zone C. I am committed to uproot corruption from MC.” The MC Commissioner AK Sinha was also non-committal on restoration of room to Bains. “I was away for a few days. Otherwise this is not a big issue, and we will solve it soon.”



Power Play
Jalkheri plant lying defunct for 3 years
Bhushan Sood

Amloh, May 2
The tall claims of the Punjab government to provide uninterrupted power supply to the industry, farm sector and domestic users by generating 1,100 MW power from wheat and paddy straw besides other means seem hollow if the state of the power plant at Jalkheri village in Amloh constituency is any indicator.

On his return from China tour recently, Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal had stated that 22 lakh tonne paddy straw that went waste every year apart from canal water would be utilised to generate power.

The Deputy Chief Minister had claimed that three plants of 40 MW capacity had already started power generation, while three others would follow soon. However, the power plant at Jalkheri village, which was inaugurated by the then Governor Sidharath Shankar Ray during militancy, has been lying shut for the past three years.

The plant was set up on a piece of land worth several crores after spending lakhs of rupees on building, machinery and residential quarters for employees.

Former sarpanch Gurdev Singh said the setting up of the plant at the village had proved beneficial for the farmers of the area as the government bought field waste like straw at the rate of Rs 250 per quintal.

The state government and the erstwhile Punjab State Electricity Board gave the plant into private hands in 2002 for 10 years but the plant closed down in 2007.

A visit to the plant revealed that 16 guards were posted there and worked in eight-hour shifts. They were posted by a Chandigarh-based company, PASCO.

Four telephone numbers mentioned on a board of Jalkheri Power Private Ltd were nonfunctional.

Efforts to elicit response on the state of the power plant from Ropar Thermal Plant executive engineer Rakesh Kumar, chief engineer Jasbir Singh Dhedi and SE (operation) Satnam Singh proved futile.

According to sources, a contract to generate 10 MW power at the rate of Rs 3.16 paise per unit was given to the JPPL of Mumbai for 10 years in 2007.

However, with the plant no longer in operation, the condition of the complex was deteriorating and the machinery worth crores and around 40 quarters were lying useless.

Went into pvt hands in 2002

The plant was set up during militancy on a piece of land worth several crores after spending lakhs of rupees on building, machinery and residential quarters for employees. It was handed over to a private company in 2002 and subsequently went out of operation in 2007



PAU museum to get facelift
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 2
City residents who are fast losing historic landmarks, courtesy civic authorities, have a reason to smile. Giving a lesson on preserving heritage monuments, the Punjab Agricultural University (PAU) authorities, in an effort to attract more visitors, have decided to give its museum a facelift.

PAU Vice-Chancellor Dr MS Kang said the Member of Parliament (Rajya Sabha) and an eminent farm scientist Dr MS Swaminathan had offered to support the development of the museum complex.

Built across 4,000 sq yard, the museum, depicting rural life of Punjab, was created by Dr MS Randhawa, an art connoisseur and former Vice-Chancellor of PAU, in 1974, which preserves the rich heritage of the state.

The museum is an attraction for the foreign visitors, city residents, especially the younger generation, who are keen to have a glimpse of Punjabi culture.

Dr Manjit Singh Kang, Vice-Chancellor, PAU, on Friday laid the foundation stone for the enquiry office-cum-ticket window of the museum.

The deans, directors, officers, faculty members and employees of the centre for communication and international linkages were all present.

Dr Kang said: “We must preserve our culture and heritage, as this museum is the only one of its kind in India that reminds us of the charms of ancient Punjab. A self-explanatory replica of the 18th Century socio, economic and rural life, the museum serves to create awakening among the young generation about the evolution and development of Punjab’s farming and rural life. The enquiry office-cum-ticket window is a necessity and will be instrumental in the smooth functioning of the museum.”

He said like various landmarks of education, technology generation and extension education at PAU, the museum is a distinct attraction.

He congratulated all those present on the occasion for their efforts in making PAU the best farm university in the country.

The additional director of communication Dr Jagtar Singh Dhiman welcomed the chief guest, Dr Kang and other dignitaries.



Reaching out to farmers in salt-affected areas
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 2
Showing keen interest in inland saline water aquaculture trials conducted by the university in salt-affected waterlogged waste land at Fazilka, Ferozepur, chief secretary, Punjab, SC Aggarwal said utilisation of these waste lands through aquaculture would help in uplifting the socio-economic status of the farmers in salt-affected areas in south-west districts of the state.

SC Aggarwal made the above observations during his visit to Guru Angad Dev Veterinary and Animal Sciences University, Ludhiana, on Friday.

Accompanied with Dr VK Taneja, Vice-Chancellor, GADVASU, deans, directors and registrar, Aggarwal visited the university dairy farm, and biogas plant, fishery farm and poultry farms. He asked the university to test suitability of rearing some suitable brackish water species in inland saline waters.

A brief presentation, including important activities and research achievement of the College of Veterinary Science, School of Animal Biotechnology, College of Dairy Science was given by experts.

Experts from different disciplines also revealed their future strategies; plan and proposal for betterment of livestock sector as a whole.

An interaction between dairy, goat, pig farmers and fisheries farmers was organised to acquaint the chief secretary about various issues, problems and constraints faced by the livestock farmers of Punjab.

Aggarwal also inaugurated the hi-tech, seat of learning -GADVASU library. Processing machineries and processed products of milk and meat were also shown to the chief secretary.

He said within a short span of five years, GADVASU had given effective livestock technologies for rural development in Punjab and assured that the state government would extend all assistance to the university to take up further challenges for sustainable development of livestock sector in the state.



From Schools
Labour day

LUDHIANA: Students of Guru Nanak Public School, Mullanpur, observed Labour Day on Monday. The programme was presided over by school principal Baljit Kaur Jawanda. Students of Beas House delivered a speech on the importance of labour community. Yogesh Kumar, a student of Class XI-A, thanked workers for their hard work and dedication. The school principal presented gifts of appreciation to Class IV employees for their devotion towards their duty.

THE WHEEL OF FORTUNE: A potter moulds a clay pot in Ludhiana.
THE WHEEL OF FORTUNE: A potter moulds a clay pot in Ludhiana.Tribune photo: Himanshu Mahajan

Sacred Heart

Labour Day was observed at Sacred Heart Senior Secondary School, BRS Nagar. The function kicked off with a speech welcoming workers and acknowledging their hard work. A prayer song marked the beginning of the programme followed by an inter-house folk dance competition. Students, with their rhythmic steps, magnificently showcased their dancing skills. A speech and a poem by Deepkamal and Harsimrat, respectively lauded the ceaseless efforts of the work force of the nation and the school in particular. In order to regale the workers, various fun-filled games were organised. The workers were overwhelmed and expressed gratitude towards the school management, teachers and students for their noble endeavour. Principal of the school Sister Christo congratulated workers and thanked them for their selfless service. After this Father John, director of the school, in his speech, focused on the priceless contribution of the workers for the smooth functioning of the institution. The result of the competition was then announced. Tagore House, Nehru House, Shastri and Gandhi House stood first, second and third, respectively. Merit certificates were awarded to proud winners. The ceremony came to a close with the recital of the school anthem.

Cherry Field School

Tiny tots have to realise the value of work and people from all walks of life who work for us. To mark Labour Day, children of Cherry Field School, Atam Nagar, came dressed as air-hostess, doctors, nurses and vegetables vendors and participated in a fancy-dress competition. A special function was organised on the school lawns that helped the children see what the school drivers, maids and cooks did for them. All Class IV employees of the school were given sweets and blankets.

Results: Dhruv, Dhariya, Harleen Kaur, Paramjit Singh, Lavanya, Varnika Sharma, Omika, Krishna Mittal and Amandeep Kaur.


Alpine International Senior Secondary School celebrated its annual prize distribution function and International World Dance Day at Guru Nanak Bhawan. Tiny tots of the school welcomed the guests with Ganesha Vandana.

Chief guest on the occasion was Vijay Luxmi Puri, principal Drishti Dr RC Jain Innovative Public School. Puri lit the traditional lamp and motivated students to work hard, give a stupendous performance in academics and co-curricular activities.

Tiny tots entertained the audience with a dance performance. They also staged Shakespeare's famous play "Julius Caesar" and Hindi play "Jhansi ki Rani". The ballet dance took away the audience to a world of fantasies, while bhangra and western dances added vigour to the show. The chief guest awarded prizes to the achievers of the school in various fields like sports, academics, art, music and extra curricular activities. Best teacher of the school was also awarded along with the most supportive parents. Principal Rajeshwari Dhir congratulated the prize winners and wished them luck.


HVM Convent School, Basti Jodhewal, organised thumb painting and Hindi calligraphy competitions under the guidance of school principal Santosh Bakshi. Students of primary classes participated in the thumb painting competition, while those of Classes I-IX participated in Hindi calligraphy competition.

Tiny tots made excellent paintings of grapes, beans, peas, corn, trees, frogs and spider with their thumb impressions.

The principal gave tips on hand writing improvement and expressive writing. School president DP Sharma, director Meena Sharma and principal Santosh Bakshi took a round of all classes and appreciated the efforts of students.


An inter-house solo dance competition was held in DRV DAV Centenary Public School, Phillaur. Students from classes VI-VIII participated in it.

Tania Gogna stood first, while Salil, Jyotsna and Dinesh got second prize. Third prize was given to Rajinder Saggoo.

Amarpreet Kaur and Tania Thandi were given consolation prizes.

Unity and Dignity Houses got the overall trophy. Principal of the school Yogesh Gambir appreciated the efforts of students and teachers.

Toppers felicitated

The young achievers of BCM Arya Model Senior Secondary School, Shastri Nagar, were honoured at the annual prize distribution function. Dr Deepak Kapur, director, Panjab University Regional Centre, Ludhiana, was the chief guest. He was given a warm floral welcome by the school authorities. After the formal lamp lighting ceremony, the programme started with classical vibes - a devotional song and Saraswati Vandana. The annual school report was read out by principal Paramjit Kaur, who highlighted the achievements of the school and students in various fields during the session 2010-11.

The cultural programme presented by students added a colourful element to the morning. In group dance sequence based on "Woman Empowerment Depicting Various Forms of Woman", the pure melodious and enthusiastic voices of young students and their synchronised steps, echoed in the auditorium touching all hearts.

Through a wonderful choreography, the students presented their message of water conservation. Addressing the audience, the chief guest lauded the sincere efforts of the students and congratulated the winners for their achievements in academics, co-curricular activities and sports. In bhangra, young BCM Aryans rocked the stage with their excellent, energetic dance steps and beat of drums.

Investiture ceremony

Kundan Vidya Mandir, Civil Lines, organised the investiture ceremony for session 2011-2012. Dr GS Wander, professor and chief cardiologist, Hero DMC Heart Institute, was the chief guest. It was a grand ceremony and started with a tree plantation drive. The Iron Eagle Club presented a guard of honour to the chief guest. Principal Navita Puri accorded a floral welcome to the chief guest and welcomed him. She emphasised the need to nurture multi-skilled personality. The principal advised students to be effective bearers of light. The investiture ceremony followed the principal's address. Head boy Rohan Goyal of Class XII-A and head girl Eshana Jain of Class XII-B administered the oath of office to the council of leaders. The new prefect council was invested with sashes, badges and house colours. A group song was sung by students of the higher section. Dr Wander congratulated and appreciated the principal, teachers and parents for their contribution at inculcating the qualities of leadership, discipline and service. He applauded students for such a great show. He advised them to strive for the best with a never-say-die attitude. The chief guest was presented a memento by Ashwani Kumar, school manager. Kirat Grewal, head of English department, proposed the vote of thanks. National Anthem marked the closing of the ceremony.

Pool day

Tiny tots of KG section of Kundan Vidya Mandir, Civil Lines, enjoyed a splash in the pool to beat the summer heat and had lots of fun. They splashed water at each other. All excitement could he heard in the cheers of children as they played in the water and were not ready to come out of the pool. Principal Navita Puri made special arrangements for children to enjoy the pool day and have a cool day at the school. She was happy to see the children having fun. — TNS 



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