L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Political interference mars demolition drive
n Ward 32 councillor Satish Nagar steps in to back and support defaulters in Chawni Mohalla
n Scorching heat takes toll on policeman
Puneet Pal Singh Gill
Tribune News Service

Head Constable Lakhvir Singh, who fell unconscious due to heat during the MC’s demolition drive at Calibre Plaza
Head Constable Lakhvir Singh, who fell unconscious due to heat during the MC’s demolition drive at Calibre Plaza

Ludhiana, July 6
Long working hours and moving around in the scorching heat appears to be taking a toll on the city’s cops. On Wednesday afternoon a constable who was part of the police contingent backing up the municipal corporation’s anti-encroachment drive at Calibre Plaza suddenly fell unconscious.

His colleagues at the scene rushed to pick him up and took him to a place shaded from the burning sun. One of them said the constable, Lakhvir Singh, had an “epileptic seizure” due to stress and the unbearable heat. An ambulance was also called to the scene but Lakhvir told its staff he was fit now and did not need any medical assistance.

"After rainfall the moisture content in the air reaches a very high level, which makes it difficult for police personnel to work in the muggy weather. We’ve to stay outdoors and that also without any shade for hours together at a stretch. And if we sit on a chair to take some rest when on duty, many people start complaining we aren’t serious about our job. They should understand we are also human beings," said a police official.

Lakhvir was part of the police force that was called in from the Police Lines to assist the civic staff in its two demolition drives, first in Chawni Mohalla and then at Calibre Plaza.

City police commissioner Ishwar Singh said if a cop fell unconscious while on duty it did not mean the entire police force was not medically fit. "This is the kind of job that all of us in the force do. It must have been due to heat that he (Lakhvir) fell unconscious," he added.


Fuel dealers not to replenish stocks for three days
Protest against govt’s refusal to cut VAT begins from today
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 6
Fuel dealers in Punjab have announced they will organize a three-day protest beginning Thursday to register their anger at the state government’s refusal to lower value added tax on petrol and diesel. They said s they will not buy fuel from the state-run oil companies and will clear unsold stocks during the next three days.

Ashok Sachdeva, general secretary of the Ludhiana Petrol Pump Dealers Association, told the Ludhiana Tribune that fuel dealers in the state were paying the highest taxes to the government when compared with their counterparts in the neighbouring states of Haryana and Himachal Pradesh and the union territory of Chandigarh.

The Punjab government charges VAT at the rate of 8.8 per cent on diesel and at 27.5 per cent on petrol.

“It has been our long standing demand that the Punjab government lower VAT rates on automotive fuels. Fuel retail outlets in areas bordering neighbouring states are incurring heavy losses due to the higher VAT in Punjab. Consumers prefer buying petrol and diesel in Haryana and Himachal. But the government seems to be in no mood to pay attention to this genuine problem.

Therefore, as a mark of protest, we’re organizing a protest from tomorrow (July 7). However, since dealers don’t want consumers to face any inconvenience, we will sell fuel during the strike period”, said Sachdeva.

At the same time, the dealers stated there were chances of fuel running in short supply if panic gripped consumers during the three-day strike. "We’ve enough stocks for two to three days. Still filling stations could dry up if consumers began purchasing fuel in bulk due to panic", Sachdeva added.



Jilted man kills wife
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 6
A jilted man gagged his 23-year-old wife to death at his one-room house located in the Ladhowal area here today.

The victim, identified as Urmila, a native of the Uttar Pradesh, and married to Sanjay Kumar for two years, had allegedly eloped with her paramour a week ago.

After reportedly spending three days with her lover she returned home and started living with her husband. She even apologised for her mistake and promised to start her life afresh.

But Sanjay was upset and was continuously quarreling with her ever since she returned.

The incident came to light when the residents of the neighbouring quarters spotted the victim lying dead.

They immediately informed the police about the incident.

Sanjay is, menwhile, on the run.

The police has registered a case and launched a manhunt to nab the accused.



Gosain-Ishwar spat takes an ugly turn
Police Commissioner releases documentary proof of crime statistics in city
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 6
A fortnight after Health Minister Satpal Gosain voiced concern over the city becoming a den of criminals and the crime graph touching all time high thereby demanding transfer of Commissioner of Police, Ishwar Singh; the latter today came out with a documentary evidence that the crime graph had actually gone down compared to the last year.

While shouting back his claims supported by data of the record maintained by the police department, the Commissioner said there had been a drastic decline in crime-related incidents.

Harping on facts, the Commissioner said the biannual report issued by the police department clearly shows that 41 murder cases were reported this year against 44 registered till June last year.

Interestingly, Ishwar came up with the evidence two weeks after Gosain was gunning for him and finally threw his guns in Commissioner’s favour. It was not before the Commissioner had a closed door meeting with the minister at the latter’s residence a few days ago amidst confidants brokering peace.

The figures given by the Commissioner reveal that not only murders but also even the snatching cases had witnessed a decline. Last year, 554 cases of snatching were reported till June, but this year the snatching cases have dropped down to 238.

At least 24 robberies took place last year while only four were reported this year. The police has solved numerous cases and also recovered stolen property. Till June last year, the police had recovered Rs 6,49,62305 worth stolen property while this year it has so far recovered Rs 7, 77, 74480 worth stolen property.



Woman delivers baby on railway tracks
Was on way to hospital after being refused by pvt clinic
Gurminder Grewal

Khanna July 6
A pregnant woman gave birth to a boy on rail tracks when she was being taken to the town’s Civil Hospital for delivery on Wednesday. Bhagwanti, a migrant labourer, was rushed to a privately run clinic located on the Lalheri road after labour pains began in the morning Khanna. However, after some time doctors there told her husband, Vinod Paswan, they would not be able handle her case and he should take his wife to the Civil Hospital for her delivery.

Finding no other mode of transport Paswan then hired a rickshaw. When the couple arrived near the train tracks Bhagwanti got out of the rickshaw as it could not proceed further due to construction of a rail overbridge. When she was crossing the tracks she went into labour and gave birth to a child in the afternoon with the help of some women who had gathered there.

After the delivery the woman and her baby were transported to the Civil Hospital where they were kept under observation. Khanna senior medical officer, who was present at the hospital, said: “Action will be taken against the privately run clinic where the woman was taken before being brought to the Civil Hospital if we find any irregularity on the part of medical personnel there”.



Drivers’ licence won’t drive you crazy
50 colleges roped in to issue learners licence from next week
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 6
Students seeking learning license for two-wheelers and four-wheelers won’t have to make the rounds of the District Transport Office (DTO) as about 50 colleges, including government, private and aided colleges, have been asked to get their employees trained at the District Transport Office so that work could be started smoothly at these educational institutions. These colleges are expected to make licenses from the next week.

On an average 250 learning licenses are prepared on daily basis for those between 18 and 20 years, mostly students, at the District Transport Office. It is on these grounds the colleges have been entrusted the responsibility of preparing the licenses.

“The state government took the step to decrease the workload of the district transport offices. Students can get the licenses in the educational institutes itself by submitting a few necessary documents,” District Transport Officer Ashwani Kumar said.

Officials of the Transport Department met principals of a few private and aided-colleges in this regard today. Officials have sought consent of these colleges by Friday (July 8).

Sharma added that 35 colleges come under private/aided colleges’ category. Fourteen others in the district were government colleges. Principals of government colleges have already been declared “licensing authorities” by the state government for issuing licenses. Principals of private colleges won’t be declared “licensing authorities” but they would be collecting the forms filled by students and submit these at the District Transport Office. Once these licenses are prepared, these would be handed over to colleges for issuing licenses to students.



Wine is passé, imported handcuffs in
Policemen want popular brands from NRIs in gift
Mahesh Sharma

Mandi Ahmedgarh, July 6
Gone are the days when policemen used to ask their NRI friends to bring wine from abroad. They are now asking them to bring imported carbon steel handcuffs for criminals.

The trend of importing handcuffs is fast catching up with policemen of the region who have discarded heavy iron handcuffs available in India. Most of them got this novel idea from Hollywood movies.

Smith Wesson, Max-Cuff, Posey, ASP and RIPP are popular brands that the policemen are asking their friends to bring.

Though none of the proud possessors admitted having chained any of the undertrials with these handcuffs, they maintained that movements became more restricted when the handcuffed person tries to remove the limbs.

In most of the cases their friends based in the USA and Canada gifted these handcuffs to the policemen.

Imported handcuffs are passion among cops. Unlike earlier trend when hands of criminals and undertrials were cuffed and chained with bulky iron rings with screw type lock, the modern handcuffs are smaller, lightweight and have automatic locks.

The imported handcuffs are made from the finest quality carbon or stainless steel. These are, then, secured with heat-treated internal locks featuring smooth ratchets for swift cuffing and double lock to prevent tampering.

These handcuffs are priced anything between $ 30 to 100 in the USA. Denying having handcuffed any of the undertrials, an SHO said he had handed over these handcuffs to in charges of various investigating teams working under him. “As these handcuffs are small and handy, policemen want to keep at least one with them so that the undertrial could be handcuffed after taking permission from the court if needed,” the SHO added.



MC demolition squad beats a hasty retreat
This is the second time that a demolition squad had to return without razing unauthorised structures
Puneet Pal Singh Gill
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 6
Political interference once again marred the municipal corporation’s ongoing anti-encroachment drive on Wednesday, causing embarrassment to civic officials. For the second time since last November a demolition squad had to return without razing unauthorized structures in the city’s Chawni Mohalla area after ward no 32 councillor, Satish Nagar, came out in support of the alleged encroachers.

Nagar, who led an "anti-demolition squad", asserted he would not let the MC raze the structures “come what may”. "These are poor people who have just constructed toilets for their use on the public land, which the MC claims has been encroached upon. If the civic body could permit a liquor vend to come up on encroached land in the area, then why is it harassing the poor? Unless that vend is demolished we won’t let the MC remove these so-called encroachments," he added.

On Wednesday morning assistant town planner Kamaljit Kaur, accompanied by his colleagues Nirmal Preet Singh and Harpreet Ghai and a large number of police officials, arrived in Chawni Mohalla. Civic officials had decided to demolish 19 illegal structures, having an encroachment of a minimum of 6 feet and maximum of 12 feet, in that locality.

When they were about to demolish the encroachments, Nagar, accompanied by his supporters reached the spot and started arguing with the MC officials. Soon, area residents also joined him and started raising slogans against MC officials.

Civic officials somehow managed to get only one of the total 19 encroachments removed, by persuading the residents.

Terming the incident a "flop show", a senior MC official said encroachments in Chawni Mohalla remained unchecked for the past many years. "Every time we went there we faced protests, which was very embarrassing for us. Even police officials remained mute spectators and didn't let the MC carry out the demolition drive," he added.

Kaur said in 2003 and then again in 2007 the Punjab & Haryana High Court had issued directions for removing all encroachments in the city. "We’ve been visiting the area several times to carry out the demolition drive, but every time we are hampered due to political interference. People should understand we’re just doing our job by complying with the court orders," she added.

In August last year after councillors had intervened, civic officials had granted two months’ time to the encroachers to remove the unauthorized structures on their own. When civic officials arrived in the Satish Nagar locality on November 15 to raze the encroachments they had to face a great deal of resentment among area residents. At that time also a councillor managed to get an extension of ten days for the structures to be demolished and had also given an assurance that the residents would themselves raze them.

Encroachers get time till July 11

After getting a written assurance from ward no 32 councillor, Satish Nagar, and two other residents of the city’s Chawni Mohalla locality, municipal corporation officials on Wednesday gave area residents time till July 11 to remove encroachments themselves.

“However, this written assurance was given just to buy some more time from the civic body. We’ll now take up the matter with senior political leaders such as BJP MLA Harish Bedi so that the alleged encroachments stay. I also plan to meet the MC commissioner tomorrow. The liquor vend in the area should be first demolished only then will we allow these encroachments to be razed," said Nagar.



Finally, MC to instal rainwater harvesting systems
Puneet Pal Singh Gill
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 6
Waking up from its slumber, two years after the state government directed the civic body to install rooftop rainwater harvesting systems, the Municipal Corporation has ordered the installation of system that, too, after the city has already experienced 350 mm of rain in June.

Though it's a welcome step, this decision has been taken when the monsoons have already arrived in the state and by the time, the MC installs these systems, which they claim to be in next three months, the monsoons would already be over. The effort would be negated atleast this year. The MC kept on sleeping over the orders for two years despite being the richest civic body of the state and knowing well that the underground water table was declining at the highest rate in the state. The orders came in 2009. MC Commissioner AK Sinha said the rooftop rainwater harvesting systems would be installed on all MC buildings by October.

“I have already issued orders for the same and under the first phase, this system would be installed in office buildings of Zone B and Zone D. Similarly, we would install this system on all our buildings in the next phase. Each such system would cost Rs 2.5 lakh to the MC,” informed Sinha. Sources informed that this decision was taken after the Central government warned the MC for stopping the funds sent under the Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission.

The depleting ground water table in the state has been a cause of concern for many years, with many blocks of the state declared black zones by the state government. Even in the city, ground water has depletedby a few feet and environmentalists have been urging the government to take some steps in this regard. “It's a welcome step. Through rainwater harvesting, we can save lakhs of litres of water. We can recharge 100 per cent of the rainwater, which would help in checking depleting ground water level,” said Dr GS Hira, who retired as additional director research (agriculture) from PAU.

Dr K K Gill, agrometerologist from PAU, said monsoons arrived on June 25. “In June alone, the city has received rainfall of 351 mm, while the normal rainfall of this month is 66 mm. this makes Ludhiana the wettest in the state,” she said.



Illegal room demolished in AC Market
Puneet Pal Singh Gill
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 6
The Ludhiana Municipal Corporation (MC) officials today demolished a room from where some persons were running an illegal water purification business. The room was situated on the top floor of Calibre Plaza, also known as AC market, near Bhadaur House here.

"The top floor of this building is meant for the parking of vehicles and no one can run any business from there. Its illegal," maintained Assistant Town Planner (ATP) Kamaljit Kaur.

She said when they had come to know about this "business", they (MC) had sent a notice to the owners, asking them to file a reply as to why they are running a business from a piece of land which is actually meant for parking.

"In their reply, they had told us that they were supplying water only inside the Calibre Plaza complex and not to any other person or office. But we had evidence in the form of photographs, from where we came to know that these persons were supplying purified water to some banks and other offices situated near Calibre Plaza. So it clearly shows that they were running a business from an area meant for the parking of vehicles," stated Kamaljit Kaur.

This afternoon, MC officials accompanied by cops, reached the Calibre Plaza and demolished a room measuring 25 ft by 14 ft and a shed adjoining it. "We had served them demolition notice a few days ago, after which they had removed all the equipment from that room. So today, we demolished the room as well as the shed with the help of our MC officials," informed the ATP.



Mozambique delegates visit PAU
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 6
A delegation from the ministry of agriculture, Republic of Mozambique (MARM), comprising Dr Calisto Antonio Francisco Bias, director-general of agricultural research, MARM, and Eugenia Fafetine, director, human resource directorate, visited Punjab Agricultural University (PAU) today and interacted with Vice-Chancellor, Dr Baldev Singh Dhillon on academic and development issues for collaboration. Dr Dhillon apprised them of the programmes and activities at PAU and said it would welcome any collaboration in academic, research and technology transfer programmes. He highlighted that many countries had shown their intent to develop collaboration with PAU. He added that the collaboration in identified areas will be undertaken through a memorandum of understanding while students’ programmes will be taken up through the Indian Council of Agricultural Research.

Dr Bias said the purpose of their visit to PAU was to explore areas of collaboration between MARM and PAU, as they held PAU in great esteem owing to its contribution in green revolution.



Students shine in BSc II exams
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 6
Keeping up the tradition of excellent results, students of BSc II from various city colleges have proved their excellence in Panjab University annual examinations. Mandeep Kaur, a student of Guru Nanak Girls College, Model Town, secured first position in the city by securing 92.2 per cent marks. She scored 1,291 marks, out of total 1,400 marks.

While Navneet Kaur from the Government College for Women secured the second position in the city by scoring 1,259 marks, out of 1,400. She scored 89.93 per cent marks. The third position in the city was grabbed by Tejinder Singh, a student from SCD Government College, here. Tejinder Singh got 1,217 marks and scored 86.93 per cent marks.



Discussion on zoonosis diseases
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 6
In order to sensitise younger generation about diseases transmitted from animals to human beings and vice-versa, a seminar was held at DCM Presidency School, Ludhiana, to mark the World Zoonosis Day, wherein students were apprised of the symptoms and prevention of diseases caused by animals.

A power-point presentation focusing some of the common and deadly diseases like leptospirosis, mad cow disease, Swine Flu, rabies, etc, was presented, along with the conduction of class discussions.

Harshveer and Kwahish of Class VII told zoonosis is an ailment that is transmitted from animals to humans.



Three commercial buildings demolished by MC
Puneet Pal Singh Gill
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 6
Taking action against encroachments, the building branch of Zone B of the Municipal Corporation today demolished three commercial buildings and got 2,500 sq yards of park vacated from different parts of the city.

Led by Assistant Town Planner (ATP) Harpreet Singh Ghai, three shops, which were demolished, were situated near Samrala Chowk and Sherpur Chowk.

“We also got 2,500 sq yards of park vacated from encroachers. Some persons had constructed rooms in the park and a small temple in that piece of land, which is owned by the MC. This drive would continue in the coming days also,” assured Ghai.



Black rice good for health
Has anti-cancer, anti-ageing properties
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 6
The Central Institute of Post Harvest Engineering and Technology (CIPHET) transferred technology of making biscuits and bread from black rice, the variety which is widely consumed in China and is also known for its health benefits.

Dr PR Bhatnagar, project coordinator (APA), recently transferred the technology to V Gowthaman of Chennai. The technology was standardised on his request. With growing consciousness regarding health foods, entrepreneurs are looking forward to introducing products in the niche segment. The biscuits and bread developed from black rice would be rich in anti-oxidants, fibre and anti-aging properties.

Senior scientist Dr Mirdula Devi, who has standardised the process, said biscuits and bread developed from black rice would also be useful for cancer patients due to the presence of anti-oxidants in it.

Black rice cultivated more in China

Black Rice is heirloom rice cultivated more in China. It looks black when it is raw but after cooking its colour changes to deep purple. The rice is usually sold un-milled with the husk intact.



power bills
Consumers penalised for late payment of power bills
Reason: Bills were not delivered on time by power body
Our Corrspondent

Amloh, July 6
The subdivisional office (SDO) of Punjab state power corporation limited at Amloh used to deliver the bills of power supply to consumers but for the past three months, the bills is not being delivered by the office, the consumer are told to select their bills from the bundles with help of an office clerk by showing their old bill.

As a result, each consumer has to pay a heavy amount in the shape of penalty. When the consumers contacted the resident accountant (RA) to wave the penalty imposed for delayed payment, as the bills had not been delivered to them, the RA expressed helplessness as he had no such power and in case he waived the penalty, he would be penalised by the corporation.

He said the employee on duty for the delivery of bills to the consumers was transferred to Shamaspur and no body had joined against his post. SDO Malkeet Singh was also contacted, he said that he had written several times to the corporation but no arrangement had been made so far.

Tera Panth Bhawan cashier Rekesh Garg, Arhtia association patron Jiwan kumar puri, municipal council former chief Baldev Sedha, Nambardar Sohan Abrol have urged the government to get the penalties waived on late payment of power bills.



Ludhiana scan

Free medical camp

The National Social and Religious Welfare Society organised a free medical check-up camp at Salem Tabri in which more than 150 patients were examined and free medicines were distributed among them. Inaugurating the camp, the BJP legislator Harish Bedi lauded the noble deed of providing free medical care to the poor people through such camps. Dr Sunil Lakhotra, president of the society said that in order to reach out to more and more poor patients, a free medical camp would be organised on every Saturday at Rishi Harmilap Nursing Home at Jalandhat Bypass.

Sale mining

The general manager of District Industries, Centre-cum-Mining Officer, Vishwa Bandhu on Wednesday said that the annual lease for sand mining granted through public auction for areas falling under Ludhiana East, Ludhiana West, Jagraon and Samrala for a period of three years from July 1, 2011, had become operational. As a regulatory measure, 12 points for sale of sand had been designated in the district at Khanna-Samrala Road and Amloh Road in Khanna, near Bus Stand in Machhiwara, Dana Mandi in Mullanpur, Octroi Post No 5 and Shivala Road near Gaushala in Jagraon. In the city, sale of sand would be made near CRPF quarters in Dugri, Partap Chowk, Meharban octroi post in Basti Jodhewal, Metro Road in Jamalpur, near dairy complex on Humbran Road and Aggar Nagar Chowk near GADVASU. The maximum rate for sand had also been fixed at Rs 750 per 100 cubic feet and overcharging or unauthorised sale at places other than designated, would attract strict penal action.

Awareness drive

Team of health officials today conducted spot checking of shops and vends selling eatables around and inside the general bus stand. Large quantity of food items, found unfit for human consumption were destroyed, with strict directions to the shopkeepers and vendors to keep the eatables covered as a preventive measure against outbreak of seasonal diseases.


Jatinder Khurana, advocate, has been unanimously appointed as press secretary of the Taxation Bar Association (TBA). On this occasion,

Khurana thanked the members for appointing him as the press secretary and assured them that he would work faithfully to solve the problems of the association. — OC



Wada Ghallughara Memorial
‘Construction will be completed by July 25’
Mahesh Sharma

Mandi Ahmedgarh, July 6
Defying apprehensions about delay in erection of the Wada Ghallughara Memorial at Rohira village near here, Darbara Singh Guru, principal secretary to the Punjab Chief Minister asserted that the construction would be completed by July 25 and the memorial would be handed over to the department of Cultural Affairs by October 15.

At the same time he directed officials working on the project to expedite the work to avoid disappointment at the last moment.

Guru was talking to Ludhiana Tribune after inspecting the under-construction project at Rohira village near here on Saturday.

Showing satisfaction over pace and quality of work undertaken by the Larsen and Tubro, Guru said the district administration had been directed to monitor the progress of construction so that the project was completed within the stipulated period. Welcoming suggestions given by residents, Guru assured them that every effort would be made to recapitulate Sikh history through the monument. Guru said Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal wanted to get construction of all three memorials at Kahnuwal, Chaparchiri and Rohira completed soon so that these could be handed over to the department of cultural affairs and tourism without further delay. The foundation stone of the memorial was laid by the deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal on October 18. Though initially it was declared that the project would be completed at an estimated cost of Rs 9 crore, sources in the administration say at least Rs 15 crore will be spent now.Accusing the administration of showing unconcern towards the progress of work, the residents of the area had apprehended that the project would not be completed during the present tenure of the state government.

Taking cognizance of these allegations, senior leaders of the ruling party in the state government had urged the Chief Minister to impress upon the officials concerned to ensure that the project was completed within the stipulated period.

To be handed over by October 15

The memorial will be handed over to the Department of Cultural Affairs and tourism by October 15



Sub-registrar office inaugurated at Mullanpur
Our Correspondent

Mullanpur Dakha, July 6
The office of the joint-sub-registrar that was constructed a few months a go was ultimately inaugurated here yesterday.

The function was presided over by additional deputy commissioner Ludhiana SR Kaler and Manpreet Singh Ayali, chairman, Zila Parishad, was the chief guest.

Addressing the gathering, Ayali claimed that grants worth over Rs 25 crore had been disbursed irrespective of political allegiance of the office-bearers of organisations undertaking development work in their respective areas.

Ayali said inauguration of the joint-sub-registrar office, constructed at cost of Rs 25 lakh will also help the administration better facilities to those visiting office of the market committee as offices of the revenue officials were earlier accommodated in that (market committee) office. Another complex will be constructed to accommodate offices of kanoongoes and patwairs, Ayali said.

Reiterating the administration’s commitment to implement people-friendly policies of the state government, Kaler said the Ludhiana deputy commissioner, Rahul Tewari, had directed rank and file in the revenue department to minimise inconvenience to those visiting their offices.



‘Govt’s plan will divert teachers from their main role’
Told to conduct survey to record details of children
Mahesh Sharma

Mandi Ahmedgarh, July 6
The Government’s plan to upgrade standard of education in state-run schools may not bear the desired results, as attention of teachers in these schools will be diverted towards accomplishing the target to identify those children not studying and dropouts.

According to sources, almost all the teachers will be going from door-to-door to record details about children between 6 and 14 years, living in area of operation, as authorities, including heads of various schools, block education officers and district education officers will have to certify that no child without school lived in area falling under his or her jurisdiction.

Though teachers have been asked to conduct the survey after their duty hours, the fatigue caused during door-to-door activity is bound to affect the quality of teaching, apprehended educationists of the area and parents of students studying in government schools.

Investigations by the Ludhiana Tribune revealed that education department had decided to conduct door-to-door survey to ascertain number of children without school between 6 and 14 years and dropouts in various regions.

Government school teachers have been asked to conduct the survey in localities falling under their respective jurisdiction. Besides visiting houses in towns and villages, survey teams will also be visiting slums, factories, bus stop, railway stations, brick-kilns, houses situated in agricultural fields and other places.

The decision to conduct the survey was taken at a monthly meeting of DEOs of the state recently.

A similar survey was conducted about six months ago and it was observed that there were 30,939 children without schools in the state. Suspecting lapses in the survey, the administration had decided to identify the target children once again.

The surveyors have also been advised to prepare lists of handicapped children not attending the school.

According to communication received by heads of various schools of the region revealed that the survey would be completed by July 21 and reports would be submitted by July 25.

Online entries about identified children will be made as per blocks and districts and authorities, including heads of schools, BPEOs and DEOs will have to submit affidavits that no children without any school lived in the area under his or her jurisdiction.

Educationists and office-bearers of various organisations led by Sikandar Singh Jartoli urged the government that the survey should be conducted by some other agency.“We don’t mind identifying children not studying and dropouts. But why those children should be made to suffer who are attending the school. Instead of burdening school teachers with extra work, the government should get the survey conducted by some private organisation,” argued the educationists and parents.



LIT moots settlement scheme to clear backlog
Kuldip Bhatia

Ludhiana, July 6
The Ludhiana Improvement Trust (LIT) has come out with a one-time settlement scheme to clear all pending cases of residential and commercial properties in its colonies dragging for decades. The move has been necessitated in the wake of thousands cases of transfer, registration of sale deeds and sale agreements in several colonies developed by the trust pending due to the non-payment of interest, penal interest and non-construction fine, change of land use and structural changes.

Ludhiana Improvement Trust chairman MM Vyas said today that the trust had suggested that the proposed “one-time settlement” ought to be comprehensive so as to settle all issues pertaining to pending cases of residential and commercial properties.

Provisions will be made to waive off penal interest on balance amount and interest charged would not exceed 15 per cent. Similarly, the non-construction fine, levied for failure to take up construction of a dwelling unit within three years, will be remitted from 50 to 75 per cent with the condition of completion of construction within a year, he added.

According to Vyas, the proposed scheme will entail formulation of a policy to provide change of the land use by levying annual license fee for carrying out permissible professional activity in residential properties. Whereas residential properties located on main roads of 60-foot width or more will be converted into commercial units on payment of lump sum composition fee.

“Similarly, the Trust has sought powers to compound structural alterations in residential properties over the years and simplification of norms for transfer of ownership or registration of sale deeds in cases of those holding general power of attorney,” he stated.

The LIT chairman claimed that after assuming office in November 2010, he had dealt with more than 1,300 cases, out of which 158 sale deeds were got registered, 109 cases of transfer of ownership were settled and 85 new sale agreements were signed till June. “We have also speeded up the execution of development works in various colonies and development projects worth more than Rs 32 crore are targeted to be completed by the end of this financial year,” Vyas added.



Dhanda first Ludhianvi to head PPSC
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 6
Shiromani Akali Dal MLA from Ludhiana (West) Harish Rai Dhanda, who was a chief parliamentary secretary (CPS), has become the first Ludhianvi to be appointed chairman of the Punjab Public Service Commission (PPSC).

The city had earlier given three members to the PPSC. They include Mubarak Singh, Amarjit Singh Chawla and Anil Sareen, who is presently a member of the commission.

Dhanda was elected an MLA on the Akali seat from the West Assembly segment during the last Assembly elections by defeating his nearest rival and Congress heavyweight Harnam Dass Johar.

During the previous elections also he had contested as an Independent, but was defeated.

Dhanda has been a lawyer for the past nearly 25 years and has been president of the District Bar Association seven times.

He is in his mid-fifties and will complete his term of six years. As per the rules, the PPSC chairman’s tenure is for six years and he cannot continue after attaining 62 years of age.



Beg, borrow or steal juvenile home inmates’ mantra
Peer pressure makes them enter dirty world of crime
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 6
Being poor seems to be their only mistake. They are living in society where beg, borrow or steal are common traits. Sense of right and wrong has never been a matter of consideration.

Oblivious of the law of the land, these children from humble background, who are living in slums, commit thefts to get hold of their desired gadgets.

Peer pressure is also force these children to enter the dirty world of crime. At least 29 such children, lodged in a juvenile home, are facing charges of stealing mobile phones, motorcycle and laptops. Majority of them are from humble background and admit that they committed the offence, as they could not afford the expensive gadgets.

“My friend used to flaunt a mobile phone. He told me that he had stolen it from an eatery in Gyaspura. I tried to do the same, but was caught and was thrashed. I was booked in a theft case and sent here,” said a 14- year- old boy while narrating the incident in a juvenile home.

A 15- year- old boy from Ropar said: “I was caught while stealing a laptop lying in a car. My parents are daily wagers and do odd jobs to make both ends meet. I always had a liking for the laptop and could not control myself when I saw it lying in the car. I broke the windshield. But was caught while picking up the laptop. The police booked me and sent me here.”

While a 15- year-old boy from Mohali, who was working in a factory unit, said: “I stole a motorcycle along with my friends two months ago.

I had no intention to sell the motorcycle. Though, I did not know how to ride the bike. I just wanted to take a ride. It was my friend who helped me in stealing it. But, I was nabbed and sent here.”

Woman and Child Development and Social Security Minister Laxmi Kanta Chawla, who was on a special visit at the juvenile home, said, “These children need special care. Our children can afford quality education and special care. From toys to computer, everything is provided to them on time. But, these children are facing real hardship. They don’t have means to arrange for food leave alone playing with toys. We can afford mobile, we buy it; but these poor children don’t know that stealing is crime. I hope they become better human beings once they get out of the juvenile home.”



Surplus power
Hot weather deflates PSPCL claims
Kuldip Bhatia

Ludhiana, July 6
Tall claims of Punjab State Power Corporation Limited (PSPCL) on the state having surplus power to meet demand of the farm sector during ongoing paddy season as well as all other categories of consumers have fallen flat with monsoon evading the region after a brief spell.

Not only restraints have been re-imposed on category two feeders (predominantly industry), the induction furnace units and rolling mills; but mixed feeders in urban areas, serving residential localities are also facing long spells of unscheduled power cuts. Frequent and prolonged shut downs for “essential maintenance” works, coupled with break downs further add to the misery of the residents of the mega city in the sultry weather conditions.

PSPCL sources said continuous dry spell during the past few days and the hot and humid weather conditions had led to spurt in the demand for power with the state again facing a gap of 4 to 5 lakh units between demand and supply of power from all sources.

While vehemently denying imposition of any power cut on domestic sector, officials assert that the regulatory measures, compulsory weekly offs for industry, had to be taken to ensure required power supply to the agriculture sector which presently needs around 3000 MW of power for sowing operations. They attribute the sharp rise in demand for electricity to power intensive industry that had shifted to PSPCL as power rates in the open market had gone up with increased demand.

If residents of most of these localities are to be believed, power situation remains comfortable only when it rain, and understandably so, because the demand for power for running tube wells goes down considerable during that particular period. “But a day or two of dry weather brings back the unscheduled power cuts and shut downs without any prior information to the affected people,” says Ashwani Jindal, a resident of the Civil Lines area. “And as if to add insult to injury, the PSPCL staff never provides any satisfactory reply to queries by harassed residents,” he added.

The industry is also sore at poor power management of the PSPCL top brass. “One day the CMD of the PSPCL boasts that the state has surplus power and there are no power cuts in force on any sector. And the very next day, compulsory weekly offs are slapped on the industry which speaks volumes about the gross mismanagement,” fumed Badish K. Jindal, president, Federation of Punjab Small Industries Associations.



Dope row: Tread cautiously, warn doctors
Anil Datt
Our Sports Reporter

Ludhiana, July 6
Treading cautiously, following “dope” controversy which resulted in suspension of top coaches and star athletes of the country, the local training centre of the Sports Authority of India (SAI) conducted a special lecture on “anti- doping” to spread awareness among the budding players.

The Sports Authority of India’s training centre being run at Guru Nanak Sports Complex arranged a lecture today. A sports doctor, Dr Ritesh Chhabra spoke on the burning issue, which stirred the sports fraternity across the nation. A number of SAI trainees and coaches attended the lecture.

The theme of the lecture was to communicate to the players about the banned drugs, their side effects on the physical and mental health of sports persons.

Dr Chhabra said supplements of reputed firms might be used if required. These must be tested and approved. “It is more important to confirm the authenticity of the supplement and manufacturing company,” he added.

Harbans Singh, in charge, SAI centre, Ludhiana, also addressed the players and coaches. He said the players must know the difference between supplements and the performance enhancing substance.

The techniques of dope analysis were quite sophisticated and could deduct any type of “unfair practice” temporarily. He advised the players to obey the rules of World Anti-Doping Agency and Say No To Drugs. The literature in the form of book as “Dope Control Handbook” a publication of the National Anti-Doping Agency in India was distributed among the players.

Players of national and international repute like Aprinder Singh, Amit Kumar, Karandeep Thakur, Bikramjit Singh, Baljit Singh, Karandeep Singh and B Vicky and coaches like PS Sain, Neelam Rani, Sita Kapila Harinder Sharma, APS Dhillon, Rakesh Singh and Sonia Kumari were present on the occasion.



Drug peddler held with charas
Tribune News Service

Jagraon, July 6
The Focal Point police has nabbed a drug peddler and seized 1.230 kg of charas.

The suspect identified as Gori Shanker, a native of Bihar, was nabbed during a routine check at naka in the Focal Point area.

During a search, the cops spotted charas and the suspect was immediately arrested. Gori Shanker was produced before the court and further taken on police remand In yet another incident, alert jail guards foiled the bid of an undertrial to sneak charas inside the jail.

According to the police, Rajwant Singh, a resident of Shaheed Bhagat Singh Nagar, who is facing charges under the NDPS Act, was caught while he was sneaking in 60gm of charas after attending a hearing in a local court.



Car thieves cock a snook at police
Thrash man with baseball bat, flee in his car
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 6
Cocking a snook at claims made by the police department that incidents of snatching has declined, four car thieves first thrashed a man and then took away the latter’s vehicle from a pizza joint on the Ferozepore road last night.

The incident took place at around 11.30 pm when Saurabh, a businessman residing on the Brindawan road, was eating Pizza while sitting in his car. According to the victim, four armed men surrounded the vehicle and asked him to get down from it.

When he refused to get down of the vehicle, one of the thieves opened the door and pulled Saurabh out of it.

The four assailants then thrashed the victim with a baseball bat and fled with his Mitsubishi Lancer car towards the Jagraon- Mullahpur road.

This is not the first incident of car theft. A police official said an organised gang of car thieves was on the prowl. Modus operandi adopted by the gang was similar to the earlier incidents.

Car thieves had fled in a car after taking the businessman hostage from the Ghumar Mandi Chowk a few days ago. The businessman was then thrown out of the moving car near the Old Court Chowk.

Similarly on June 27, four car thieves successfully managed to flee with a car by pulling out a woman from outside Raghunath Hospital.

The thieves also abducted two children who were sleeping on the back seat of the vehicle. They abandoned the vehicle after it got stuck in the paddy field at Malak village near Jagraon.

Additional Deputy Commissioner of Police JS Sidhu said: “The case has been registered following a complaint lodged by the victim. The police has launched a manhunt to nab the accused.” 



Thieves decamp with 50-tola gold
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Jagraon, July 6
Thieves struck at a house located in Tehsil Road in the Jagraon area and decamped with gold ornaments worth Rs 10 lakh.

The incident came to light this morning when Rakesh Jain, a businessman, entered the room of his son found the gold ornaments missing. He reported the matter to the police.

Jain said his newly married son was away with his wife. There was no one in the house when the incident took place. Sunita, wife of Rakesh jain said the thieves decamped with 50-tola gold ornaments. Besides gold jewellery, the thieves also laid their hand on cash. Jain said he had no clue as to how the thieves trespassed into the house.

Soon after receiving the information, the police along with a dog squad reached the house and started the investigation. But they could not find any clue. However, the police has not ignored the involvement of an insider behind the theft.



TT meet
Abhinav outplays Jasbir
Our Sports Reporter

Ludhiana, July 6
The Life Insurance Corporation (LIC) of India organised a table tennis tournament at its Dugri office here today, in which participants from local offices took part.

On the basis of their performance, four participants, namely Ramesh Kaul, Anil Kumar Makol, Jasbir Singh and Yogesh Kandhari, qualified for the divisional-level table tennis tournament.

SK Aggarwal, senior divisional manager LIC of India, Ludhiana, gave away prizes to the winners.


Men: Abhinav Rawat beat Jasbir Singh 21-19, 21-18, 23-21 and 21-19 to emerge champion, whereas Ramesh Kaul defeated Yogesh Kandhari 21-19, 19-21 and 21-18 to secure third place.

Women: Abaan outplayed Namarata Thakur 11-09, 11-05 to come out triumphant, while Renu Bala secured third position on league basis.



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