L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Man taken captive, tortured in Malaysia
Thrashed with iron rods for 20 days, burnt with cigarettes
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News service

Ludhiana, August 11
Dream of a resident of Jagirpur, who whished to settle in a foreign country, turned sour after he was taken captive and tortured at Darul Ehsan in Malaysia for 20 days. Gurcharan Singh like any other Punjabi youth was excited about starting his life afresh till July 21.

But he was hardly aware that on reaching Malaysia he would be tortured and the master of his fate would burn his skin cigarettes and thrash him with iron rods. His wounds had turned sore that maggot had started eating it.

Manmohan Maan, a native of Malaysia, got a whiff of the atrocities on Gurcharan and contacted with Gurcharan’s family in India and managed to get him deported.

Gurcharan (26) is thankful to Manmohan for saving his life. He said, “I am receiving psychiatric treatment at Dayanand Medical College and Hospital (DMCH). I had paid Rs 1.12 lakh to Nirmal Singh, a Raikot- based travel agent, who assured to get me a one-year working visa. His son Baljinder Singh (20) also boarded the flight with me. On landing in Malaysia, Baljinder’s sister Manjinder Kaur, who is married to Manmohan Maan, took us a nursing home of her husband in Darul Ehsan. I started working in that nursing home.”

“After a days work, Baljinder took me to a pub where a tall South- Indian youth took me to an enclosure. He handcuffed me and told Baljinder to leave the place. He told me that I would have to undergo some tests if I want to stay here. He tied my hands and hanged me in the mid-air. Then he started smashing iron rods on my legs. His friends joined after he finished. They him my private part as well. I was then loosened. I remained unconscious for nearly 30 minutes. I, somehow, managed to reach the nursing home. I don’t know why I was thrashed,” said Gurcharan.

“The next day when I sitting with Manjinder, she put something in my drink. I was in delirium. I cried in pain after she suddenly burnt a cigarette butt on my leg,” Gurcharan added.

Baljinder thrashed Gurcharan for a fortnight. He was warned against telling anyone. “My parents had arranged money with great difficulty. So I endured everything quietly,” said Gurcharan Singh, while showing his wounds.

Kamaljit Kaur, sister of Gurcharan, said, “Every time I used to contact and ask them to give phone to my brother, the used refuse. I complained to Nirmal Singh, father of Baljinder Singh, about it.” Manmohan Maan said: “I didn’t knew that my wife and her brother were running a travel agency and conning innocent youths. When I came to know about it, I established contact with Gurcharan’s family and made arrangements so that he could return. I don’t know whether Gurcharan used to take drug or whether he was drugged.”

Their father Nirmal Singh took Manjinder and Baljinder, who came along with Gurcharan from Malaysia, away. But, Gurcharan was left to fend for himself in Delhi. “Fortunately I had some Indian coins. I rang up my friend who further arranged the money for me to reach the city,” Gurcharan said and added that Nirmal Singh had sent nearly six persons on work permit.

“When he left from here he was normal. But when he returned home yesterday, I was shocked to see him. He was out his mind and was crying profusely like a little child,” said Kamaljit Kaur. The family has lodged a complaint with the Commissioner of Police.


In hearty turnaround, resident foils snatching bid
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 11
Two snatchers found themselves at the receiving end at street 1 of Gopal Nagar on the Tibba road here this morning. They intercepted a city resident and tried to rob him, but the brave resident confronted them. The snatchers panicked and fled the spot, leaving their motorcycle, a mobile phone and a shoe behind.

The incident took place when Tilak Raj, a cloth merchant, was returning home after dropping his brother-in-law Chattarpal at the railway station.

“As soon as I entered the street around 5 am, two motorcycle-borne youths, who had their faces covered, intercepted me,” he said.

“The youth riding pillion tried to grab me, but I managed to dodge them and sped away in my vehicle,” Tilak Raj further said.

“When I reached near my house, I stopped my vehicle and grabbed the youth riding pillion. I raised an alarm and called my father and brother,” he added.

“The youths panicked and told me that they were carrying a weapon. I was scared and freed the youth. They tried to flee on the motorcycle, but I pushed them,” he said.

“They fell on the road. Before residents could nab them, they fled, leaving the motorcycle and a mobile phone behind. One of them even left a shoe,” he stated.

Jodhewal Basti SHO Jatinder Singh said it was found during investigation that the suspects had snatched the mobile phone and motorcycle from city residents earlier.

The police registered a case of snatching. Tilak Raj said the area was a haven for snatchers and drug addicts were snatching ornaments of elderly women in daylight.

PCR men came after 45 minutes

Tilak Raj complained that had the police acted swiftly, the snatchers could have been nabbed. He alleged that he called the helpline on number 100 at 5:08 am, but PCR personnel arrived after 45 minutes.



With UK on boil, locals defer trips
Puneet Pal Singh Gill
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 11
After the riots that rocked London and other British cities over the last few days, residents who had plans to travel to the United Kingdom are now cancelling their air bookings. Travel agents said though some people are still flying to Britain there are many others who have postponed their trips for the time being.

Aman Phallar of Seasons Holidays Planners in the Feroze Gandhi Market said in last two days eight of his clients had asked for their airline tickets to be cancelled. “People who intend to visit the UK are coming up with various queries about the situation prevailing there. Those who were to attend functions in Britain are also cancelling their airline bookings as perhaps they are worried about their safety,” he added.

It is learnt a senior district administration official left for the UK on Thursday after reportedly buying foreign travel insurance of Rs 5 lakh. “He did it just as a precautionary measure,” remarked a travel agent.

On the other hand Rupjeet Saggar of Saggar World Holidays said most people who travel to the UK for holidaying go in October. “Most of our customers are having travel plans for October and that is why they aren’t canceling their air bookings now. I’ve been told the situation in Britain isn’t as bad as shown on TV,” he added.

A local businessman who did not wish to be named said he was scheduled to visit the UK for a seminar and too in a city that was not affected by the rioting. “Nevertheless my wife asked me to cancel my trip, to which I agreed, and now I’ve got my air bookings cancelled,” he added.



Parents vexed with children’s fake Facebook accounts
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 11
Fake ID accounts being created school students’ friends on the social networking website Facebook are causing a great deal of worry to their parents. The latter, who have not allowed their wards to set up their own accounts, are often criticized by those who are on the site.

Many students, especially of the city’s leading schools, have been helping their not so net savvy friends by creating and operating their accounts on Facebook.

Said Anju Goel (name changed on request), whose daughter studies in standard 10 at Sacred Heart Senior Secondary School: “I was shocked to know my daughter was on Facebook. To check it I searched for the particular (daughter's) name) and her photograph appeared. When I asked her about it she said one of her friends had created the account and the password was also with the friend. When I scolded her and told her about the repercussions, she said all her friends teased her for being ‘outdated’ and ‘conservative’”.

“If this practice isn’t stopped anyone can misuse or defame anybody by creating a fake account on the site,”.added Goel, who had to send an email to Facebook requesting it to delete her daughter's fake account.

However, this is not an isolated case. Several school officials, too, have been finding it very difficult to stop this practice. The principal of DAV School, BRS Nagar, RS Patial, said he held parents responsible for not keeping a check on their children.

"As far as students are there in the school, they are disciplined but after school-timings, we can not keep a tab on them. It is the duty of parents not to give their wards too many liberties. Instead, parents have given them separate PCs or laptops. Apart from this, children are being given privacy to operate their accounts. We have sent many letters to parents to keep a check on their wards but there is no way to put an end to these sites", Patial averred.

For keeping a check school officials even ask students to open their Facebook accounts in front of them. "Recently I got many students to open their Facebook accounts, read all their chatting text and even downloaded and sent them to their parents, but latter expressed their helplessness in handling their own kids, which is sad", he added.



Schoolkids earn while they learn
Hemdeep Kaur

Ludhiana, August 11
Most successful entrepreneurs begin earning at an early age and become role models for others. Those who want to gain experience at an early stage of their career can ‘earn while they learn’ through part time jobs.

This practice, which is already an established concept abroad, is now gradually gaining ground in India. About 70 students - both boys and girls - of the Panjab Agricultural University school are engaged in some type of part time work at their early age.

Nitish Kumar, a class 11 student, who is a marketing distributor in a firm, Global Sunlife, and earns Rs 7,000 to Rs 8,000 a month, said: "I’m earning because I want to be independent. It gives me satisfaction that I’m helping out my parents financially."

Many of these students are even paying their school fees. Vijay Kumar, who is studying in class 12, works part time as a newspaper vendor. He earns Rs 800 a month and helps his parents to meet household expenses.

Navneet Kaur, a class 11 student, makes Rs 1,500 a month by giving tuitions. "I’m tutoring class 6 students and charging Rs 100 from every student. This helps me to keep in touch with studies even after my classes and I enjoy the work”, she added.

Lodhi Singh, who studies in class 12, has a part time job at a firm, Assima Metals, and is paid Rs 1,500 a month, while Amandeep Singh works at another concern, Easy Day, and earns a monthly wage of Rs 2,700. Gurpreet is working doing Online Surveys and earning Rs 400 in per month. Jatinder has a computer hardware job and earns Rs 3,500 a month, which is sufficient for him.

Raman, Gaurav, Paramvir, Gurjeet and many more students of PAU school are making efforts to help their parents. These students are earning their pocket money and are also encouraged by the school staff.

Anoop Kumar Passi, vice principal of the school, said: "We encourage our students to work part time by citing them as ‘role models’ and praising them at the school assembly. Students are working very hard to make their dreams come true and I think it’s our responsibility to boost their confidence. Students are well aware of their responsibility and becoming mature at an early age”. They have created a benchmark for others.



Govt bans ‘Aarakshan’ screening
Panel decides to review film after protest by Dalits
Puneet Pal Singh Gill
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 11
After the state government, apprehending that some scenes and dialogues of the Bollywood movie “Aarakshan” might hurt the sentiments of Dalits, decided to ban its release, owners of cinema halls and city residents are a worried lot.

The state government has formed a committee comprising Samir Kumar, Secretary (Home), Raj Kumar Atihai, Chairman, Safai Karamchari Board, Punjab, Vijay Danav, Chairman, Scheduled Caste Welfare Board, VK Bhawra, Inspector General (Intelligence), and vice-chancellors of Punjabi University, Patiala, and Guru Nanak Dev University, Amritsar, to review the film. Vijay Danav said the committee members would see the movie in a multiplex at Zirakpur. We would not allow it to be screened in theaters if we come across use of any abusive language in the movie.

“We are aware of the use of abusive language in some parts of the movie. We will not allow the movie to be screened till such dialogues are deleted. This has been decided after the Dalits objected to certain scenes in the movie,” Danav added.

The members would watch the movie in the multiplex at 8 pm today and submit the report to the state government for further action. “I would be able to comment only after watching the movie. The producers of the movie have sent the prints by air till Delhi and now they are en route to Zirakpur by road,” he added.

The cinema owners said they had not received any official communiqué in this regard. The information received so far is through media.

Brajesh Soni, manager, Waves Cinemas, Ludhiana, said, “ We have not received the schedule for “Aarakshan” as yet. Though we usually receive the schedule on every Wednesday. That is why, we are not doing any advance booking, but we were certainly getting a lot of queries. I came to know that the movie has been banned in Punjab through TV. Decision to whether release it or not would be taken by my seniors based in Noida,” Soni added.

The police department has been tipped off that a few persons can even stage protest if the movie is released without getting clearance from the committee.



Pay agent Rs 5,000 to evade enhanced road tax
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 11
Want to get a registration certificate for your vehicle in back date to evade road tax? The answer is not a legal method, but touts at the office of the District Transport Officer (DTO), who get the work done by charging fee.

About two-dozen middlemen, in connivance with the DTO staff, have been ‘helping’ vehicle owners get their registration certifications (RCs) made at the previous rate. These middlemen charge between Rs 4,000 and Rs 5,000 from vehicle owners to get the RC made in back date (before the notification date on revision of the road tax).

The vehicle owners, who had purchased their vehicles before the motor vehicle tax was revised and had paid the tax on old rates but could not get their RCs made, are now being asked by the middlemen to settle the issue outside the office.

“The reality is that the number of middlemen is double the number of staff working at the DTO office. Some of the departmental clerks have also been hiring regular services of middlemen so that there was no problem in settling the issues ‘under the table’.

“Around 100 RCs of non-commercial vehicles are made daily in the city and in this particular category, the signatures of the DTO are not mandatory,” said an employee of the DTO office requesting anonymity.

On being asked why the owners did not get their RCs made even after five months of the notification, the employee said at times the owners wanted some particular number, which was not available at the time of the purchase.

Earlier, the owners of non-commercial vehicles were charged 2 per cent of the value of motor vehicle as tax. But as per the latest notification, if the vehicle costs up to Rs 5 lakh, the owner has to pay 2 per cent of the price of the vehicle. The vehicles costing between Rs 5 lakh and Rs 10 lakh invite a tax of 4 per cent. The rate of tax will further go up to 6 per cent for vehicle with a value of Rs 10 to 20 lakh, and for a vehicle exceeding Rs 20 lakhs, the owners will shell out 8 per cent of the value of the motor vehicle as tax.

Official records reveal that the DTO office has been able to get about 40-45 per cent more revenue following the notification in February 2011.

Insiders claim that a large number of vehicle owners with RCs lying pending with the office of the DTO even after motor vehicle tax having been deposited, had struck deals with middlemen to evade the enhanced rate of tax.

The DTO was not available for comments despite repeated comments.



Touts add to railway ticket seekers’ woes
Kuldip Bhatia

Ludhiana, August 11
Even as bona fide passengers face a lot of harassment when booking advance train tickets at the Northern Railway reservation centre in the city, middlemen and touts in connivance with a few railway employees are making a fast buck by circumventing the system.

The means adopted include dummy bookings of long journey tickets and cornering a large chunk of tickets under the ‘tatkal’ (immediate) category the moment their bookings open 48 hours before the date of journey and then selling the tickets at a hefty premium.

There are currently seven booking counters at the reservation centre - far too inadequate to cope with the heavy rush of people visiting it every day. The situation is further compounded by the fact that one or even two of the counters remain closed, and the usual reasons trotted out are shortage of staff or employees on leave.

If frequent travellers are to be believed, as soon as tickets for a particular train journey dry up at the reservation centre the touts take over, offering confirmed reservations in the “general” or even the ‘tatkal’ category. How they manage it is anybody's guess.

More often than not, the cops stationed at the railway reservation centre act in a dubious manner, more so early in the morning when ‘tatkal’ bookings open at 8 am. There have been instances when policemen on duty have offered to intervene and get ‘tatkal’ reservation forms processed out of turn, obviously for a consideration.

Those visiting the reservation centre are sore at the lack of facilities and the utter chaos prevailing there most of the time. "People keep waiting for their turn while members of the railway staff continue to entertain shady looking characters carrying a bunch of reservation forms. The same goes for reservation of ‘tatkal’ tickets in the morning," said Ram Sharan, who has been coming to the centre for the past three days to book ‘tatkal’ tickets, without any success

Another man waiting outside the centre said: “After I was unable to get a reservation to Bombay I struck a deal with a middleman who promised me a confirmed ticket. I’m not concerned as to how he’ll do it but I feel relieved I’ll get to make the trip according to my schedule”.

Northern Railway officials, however, denied touts or middlemen were involved in train reservations. “There are authorized railway booking agencies that get reservation done for passengers and charge a service fee as stipulated by Indian Railways. And tickets under the ‘tatkal’ category are issued strictly on a first come, first served basis”, an official asserted.



Money matters mar move
MC offers LIT land, reserve price high
Puneet Pal Singh Gill
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 11
After failing to get buyers for two pieces of land in the city, the municipal corporation (MC) has now offered the Ludhiana Improvement Trust (LIT) to buy these. MC officials have submitted a proposal in this regard. The LIT says the MC has quoted a high reserve price, but still, the matter is under consideration.

The LIT says it may not be financially viable for it to purchase these, but officials are in the process of discussing the proposal.

MC Commissioner AK Sinha has said the sites will be sold at the market rate and any government agency interested can contact him.

“After giving an offer to the LIT, we have not received a reply. I spoke to LIT chairman MM Vyas on the issue and gave the proposal,” he has added.

The MC has quoted a reserve price of Rs 50,000 per square yard for one site, measuring 4.5 acres, near the fire station on the Hambran road.

Officials with the civic body say it can be exploited commercially. Vyas has said it is a long strip of land and the LIT cannot have a residential complex there.

The MC has quoted a reserve price of Rs 10,000 per square yard for the other site, measuring 9,200 square yards, near the Altas Nagar road on the Hambran road.

Civic body officials say it can be used for constructing flats. Vyas has said they can have either lower-income group or medium-income group flats there.

“We are in the process of discussing the proposal and have neither refused nor accepted it. The MC is quoting too high a reserve price for both sites,” he has said.



Villagers upload pics of ongoing projects on website
Keep NRIs updated on development works
Puneet Pal Singh Gill
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 11
Developing a website has proved beneficial for a tiny hamlet of the district, which has managed to secure the NRIs’ support in the form of funds for the development of the village.

Residents of Boparai Kalan village near Sudhar have developed a website, www.boparaikalan.com, through which they can keep 1,000 odd non-resident Indians of their village updated on various development projects being undertaken in the village.

Village residents said the website helped them in securing funds for various development projects as the NRIs could keep a close watch on the website from across the globe.

The website was developed a couple of years ago by two village youths, who are settled in Canada.

“Even now the website is managed by one of my relatives, who is settled in Canada. We scan and send all news clippings, photographs of the ongoing development projects and other such news through emails and the website is updated in Canada. The website has really helped us in showcasing our development projects, which we are proud of,” claimed Inderjit Singh Deol, sarpanch of the village.

Boparai Kalan is among the leading villages in the field of education. It has produced a number of doctors, engineers, teachers and sportspersons. The village population is about 4,200, out of which roughly 1,000 are NRIs, who are mostly settled in Canada. Apart from having schools, an ayurvedic dispensary and a veterinary hospital, it has a 25-bedded Sant Sundar Singh Memorial Hospital.

When an ultramodern funeral home at the village was to be constructed, the villagers had appealed to the NRIs to arrange funds. The funeral home, which is operated through LPG, came up at a cost of Rs 40 lakh. The villagers have even constructed a mortuary, where four bodies can be kept.

“Whenever we want to carry out any development work in the village, we issue an appeal through our website, after which the NRIs start donating money. To keep them updated about any particular project, we upload pictures on our website so that the NRIs could know that we are actually doing something for the benefit of the village. Recently we also completed a project of water works system, on which Rs 60 lakh was spent and now the village is getting supply of water, which is purified by RO technology,” stated Deol.

The village residents are proud to have their own website. “It makes us feel proud in front of our relatives residing in other villages. Moreover, we remain connected with the world through the website,” said Inderjit Singh Deol.


Villagers said the website helped them secure funds for various development projects as the NRIs could keep a close watch on the website from across the globe



Work efficiently, SDM tells officials
Mahesh Sharma

Payal, August 11
To enable residents of the area to avail benefits under the Right to Service Act, Payal SDM Dr Neeru Katyal cautioned rank and file in the administration against any indifference. The warning was issued during a meeting held here on Wednesday.

Referring to directions of Ludhiana Deputy Commissioner Rahul Tewari, Dr Katayal said all government officials should start working efficaciously without any delay. Katyal said offenders would be dealt with strictly.

Officials failing to provide the services within the requisite time frame (varying from one day to 60 days) would be penalised. They would have to pay an amount ranging from Rs 500 to Rs 5,000 as fine, warned Katyal.

The Act included services like procuring driving licences, revenue records, water supply and sewerage connections, copy of FIRs, passport verification and NOCs.

Among other present at the meeting included Doraha BDO Ashish Chaudhary, SDO Santosh Kumar, EO municipal council Surinder Kumar and SMO Dr Ashwani Malhotra.



Snakebite cases on rise in region
No ventilator facilities for victims in government hospitals
Lovleen Bains

Doraha, August 11
As the monsoon season has seen a spurt in the cases of snakebite, the private hospitals as well as the public have demanded that immediate and adequate medical facilities be provided at the government medical institutes for the afflicted ones.

“The monsoon season has seen a rise in the number of snakebite cases. The patients are mostly from rural areas. As water enters the holes of the snakes during the rainy season, they prefer shifting to the dry areas. Labourers who sleep on the floor or work in the paddy field are exposed to snakebites”, said Dr Gursaran Sidhu, director and chief of department of medicine, Sidhu Hospital, Doraha.

“The species that is commonly seen in the northern region is the “krait”. Patients, who are bitten by a “krait”, sometimes do not even know that they have been bitten by a snake as the bite is painless. Most common symptoms in such bites are pain in the abdomen, vomiting and respiratory difficulties. Snake venom injected by the snake during the bite can cause complete neuroparalysis. Thus, the patient, in such a situation, is not able to move his limbs, open his eyelids, although his brain works normally and his heart is as healthy as a normal person. The respiratory problem caused is life threatening as the patient is not able to breath, thus causing immediate death. The patients at that time need urgent ventilatory support and an anti -snake venom (ASV) injection. If they are treated well the recovery can be 99.9 per cent”, Sidhu said.

Arun Kumar, a resident of Bhagpur in Koom Kalan village, is a hapless victim of snakebite. For the past one year, he has been lying almost lifeless on a ventilator at Sidhu Hospital, Doraha. A snake bit him while he was sleeping in the open, guarding the fields of his employer. He was unaware of the bite till his body, nerves and even brain began to get numb.

“He was brought to the hospital to be abandoned immediately by his employer and all his relatives. The administration too has no provision of admitting a case requiring immediate ventilator support. Such a provision is only available at the tertiary hospitals. Arun suffering traumatically in the ICU of the hospital has nobody to turn to for help”, she said.

“His position is really critical. Not only has his limbs got paralysed, his respiratory tract has also been completely blocked as a result he is not even able to breath properly. To make matters worse, Arun does not have money for his treatment. The hospital too is in affix as to what should be done with such a patient”, Sidhu added.

“Immediate treatment and good care can save the life of these young labourers who come to Punjab form other states to earn their livelihood and support their families. The administration needs to help them and the treating hospitals that sustain the burden of treating such patients”, she said.

Dr Ashwani Sharma, SMO, Payal, said that they had not received even a single snakebite case in Payal during the past month. “Secondly, if the patients of snakebite come to the community heath centre, they are given the anti-snake venom (ASV) injection free of cost. A medical specialist is available and 24-hour emergency services too are provided. More so, during the entire treatment, we do not charge even a single penny from them”, Sharma added. He contended that till date no private hospital had approached them for this purpose. He however admitted that they did not have ventilators to support such patients at Payal and these were available only at tertiary hospitals.



Patient must be treated within 3 hrs of the bite: Doc
Anupam Bhagria
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 11
The cases of snakebite are being reported in different civil hospitals and primary health centres being run by the health department. Interestingly, the district's biggest Civil Hospital which provides "Anti snake venum serum injections, last Monday spotted a snake in one of its wards before an NGO Aan Jal Sewa planned to clean up the civil hospital premises. It created fear psychosis among all present there.

According to Dr Subhash Batta, senior medical officer, Civil Hospital, Ludhiana, "We received two cases of snakebite from outside city in July and treated them successfully. Any victim who comes here is given the injection to neutralise the effect of the venom."

While Dr Jasbeer Singh serving at the Civil Hospital Mandi Ahmedgarh said, "Mostly we receive patients who are bitten by a cobra, which is a very poisonous snake."

The person is supposed to get treated immediately after a snake bites, as one dies immediately in case the venum enters the vein. One should be treated within two to three hours of the bite, said Batta. He further said, "Many people go to snake charmers to get the effect of the venum neutralised, but this does not help. As soon as a snake bites the area should be tightly wound with a cloth so that the venum does not spread to the other parts of the body.

Bring victims at par with those killed by wild animals

The Punjab State Board for Wildlife which met last month decided that those bitten by snakes must be brought at par with those killed by wild animals. In case of causality, a compensation of Rs 1 lakh is to be given. It was decided to give Rs 20,000 for amputation and Rs 5,000 as medical expenses in case of minor injuries.



SAD leaves many hopefuls sad
Jaswant Shetra

Jagraon, August 11
With the declaration of candidates by the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) for the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) elections from the constituencies of Jagraon, Mullanpur Dakha and Sidhwan Bet, a few aspirants can count themselves fortunate.

A large number of ticket-seekers, including an incumbent, have been left disappointed after the release of the party’s list of candidates.

The SAD has declared Sikh Students Federation (Grewal) president Gurcharan Singh Grewal its candidate from Jagraon. With this, a large number of aspirants, including current member Harsurinder Singh Gill and former SAD MLA Bhag Singh Mallha, have been left in the lurch. Zila parishad member Chand Singh Dalla and SAD circle jathedar Akthiar Singh Roomi, besides other Akali leaders, lobbying for the ticket, have also been left empty handed. Grewal will face trouble from within the party as some leaders are not happy on his getting the ticket.

The situation at Mullanpur Dakha is different. The party has declared current member Surinder Kaur Baddowal its candidate from Mullanpur Dakha (general) and SGPC (Junior) vice-president Kewal Singh Badal from Mullanpur Dakha (reserved). Badal is the SGPC member from the Sidhwan Bet (reserved) constituency and the road seems clear his re-election. Baddowal will face tough competition from Dakha sarpanch Jatinder Singh, who is contesting as a Panthak Morcha candidate. The SAD has declared Jaswant Singh Purain its candidate from Sidhwan Bet. He enjoys the support of zila parishad chairman Manpreet Singh Ayali. Gurbax Singh Purain, SGPC member from the Sidhwan Bet (general) constituency, has been denied the party ticket. Considered close to the late Gurcharan Singh Tohra, he has already announced his decision to contest as an Independent.



sgpc polls
26 candidates file nominations
Puneet Pal Singh Gill
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 11
For the Shiromani Gurudwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) elections, which are scheduled for September 18, a total of 26 persons filed their nomination papers for five constituencies in the city today.

Prominent among those who filed their papers today include SGPC president Avtar Singh Makkar, Balwinder Singh Bains, Surinder Singh from Danga Peerit Welfare Society, besides some others.

Since morning, there was a huge rush of people at the mini secretariat, as all candidates reached the premises with a cavalcade of supporters.

Avtar Singh Makkar and Surinder Singh filed their nomination papers from Ludhiana West, while Balwinder Singh Bains, elder brother of Youth Akali Dal district president Simarjit Singh Bains filed his papers from the Ludhiana South constituency.

From Ludhiana City South constituency, five candidates namely Balbir Singh, Darshan Singh, Balwinder Singh Bains, Kashmir Kaur and Didar Singh filed their nomination papers. Similarly from Ludhiana City West, Kulwinder Kaur Dhaliwal, Avtar Singh Makkar, Tejinder Pal Singh, Kulwant Singh, Paramjit Singh, Surinder Singh and Balwinder Singh filed their nomination papers.

From Ludhiana City West (Women General) constituency, Rajinder Kaur, Amandeep Kaur, Rajinder Kaur, Sarbjit Kaur and Parminderpal Kaur filed their papers. From Ludhiana City (North), Taranjit Singh, Jaswinder Singh, Amandeep Singh, Davinder Singh and Nirmal Singh filed their papers.

From Ludhiana Rural, Sukhdev Singh, Balkar Singh, Nazar Singh and Manjit Singh filed their nomination papers.



Blare before battle for the ballot
It is youth versus experience
Puneet Pal Singh Gill
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 11
It seems that political parties are cashing in on the youth when it comes to elections. In one such development, 36-year-old Gurdeep Singh Gosha, president of the youth wing of the Akali Dal (Delhi), has been pitted against Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) president Avtar Singh Makkar for the SGPC elections.

Gosha says people want the youth to come forward and take the functioning of the SGPC in their hands while Makkar says the SGPC elections hold a special place for Sikhs across the globe, who want experienced persons at the helm of affairs. “The Youth comprise 40 per cent of the voters in my constituency, Ludhiana West-71. Since the announcement of my name, a large number of people have come out in open support,” he says.

An SGPC member for the past six years, Makkar says when it comes to SGPC elections, people vote for experience. “Gosha is young, but that does not mean that he will get votes,” he says. claimed Makkar.



Ice breaks as VCs of PAU, GADVASU meet
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 11
In an attempt to break the ice between the PAU and GADVASU, the Vice-Chancellors of both leading universities met at the GADVASU campus today. Dr BS Dhillon, VC, PAU, said that it was a very cordial meeting with Dr VK Taneja, VC, GADVASU, and his team.

"Dr Taneja is just like an elder brother. Both the universities are putting in their best in the respective fields and mutual collaborations will definitely strengthen the ties further", said Dr Dhillon further adding that both institutes were keen to work together on several projects but it would take sometime.

According to sources, both VCs have shown "keenness" to work together in joint ventures. As far as the matter of funds was concerned, both Taneja and Dhillon decided to approach the funding agencies together for seeking financial grants. They held discussions on many projects, which could be brought together by GADVASU and PAU.

Dhillon reportedly visited Veterinary Clinic, GADVASU hospital, library, College of Veterinary Sciences etc and took interest in the working of animal sciences. Taneja said that in biotechnology, the farm university and animal sciences university could work together.

A faculty member from GADVASU on condition of anonymity said, "This was a much awaited visit from PAU side. There were differences on several issues before but seeing the positive approach by both the VCs, it seems GADVASU and PAU are actually keen to work together on projects.



Karan does city proud
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Karan Singh PangliLudhiana, August 11
The joys of Pavittar Singh Pangli, president of the PAU Kisan Club, knew no bounds when he got a call from his nephew Karan Singh Pangli, one of the performers on the show “Just Dance”, which is being telecast on a TV channel, to come to Delhi to root for him.

“It was good to see Karan performing in such an electrifying manner. A disciple of Pandit Birju Maharaj, Karan has a passion for dance and his mother Manjinder Kaur is the pillar of strength for Karan,” said Pangli, who returned yesterday from Delhi after attending a roadshow with Karan.

Six feet tall, Karan is from the UK and started dancing at the age of five. His father MS Pangli hails from Panglian village near Kohara.

Talking to Ludhiana Tribune on telephone from Delhi, Karan said he was proud to be a Punjabi. “Hritik Roshan, one of the judges on the show, has been my real inspiration. I felt so good to perform in front of the great dancer. All judges have been very encouraging,” said Karan.

Karan added that he had met Hrithik on three occasions. He was one of the background dancers in the movie “Kabhi Khushi Kabhie Gham”. Besides, he has also performed at an IIFA awards function. “However, on “Just Dance”, Hrithik knows me as an artiste and the feeling is great,” said Karan.

His parents left for the UK after staying with Karan for about 15 days. It was now Pavittar Singh Pangli’s turn to encourage his nephew. “The roadshow was held at DLF Mall on Tuesday. After attending all dance workshops in India, Karan is now more polished and focused,” said Pavittar Singh.



Part of building razed
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 11
Municipal corporation (MC) officials demolished part of an illegal building at Karimpura Bazar this morning. Officials said owner of RS Chawla Handlooms had not got sanction from them for extending a portion of the shop.

Assistant town planner Harpreet Singh Ghai said the owner had continued the construction despite several reminders, which had left them with no other option.

“The owner of the building had been extending a portion of the shop for constructing a godown, but had not got the mandatory site plan cleared from the MC,” he added.



Residents put off protest
Water supply to village cut off
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, August 11
The district administration heaved a sigh of relief when residents of Bassian village, who have been without water for days, put off their plan to block the Ludhiana-Bathinda highway.

Officials from the Ludhiana Deputy Commissioner’s office assured them that the water supply would be restored.

The water works authorities had cut off the water supply as some residents could not pay their water bills on time.

The residents have given a one-week ultimatum to the administration. Sehajdhari Sikh Party president Dr Parminder Singh Ranu said they would intensify agitation if their demand was not met.




Plea to curb racial violence

Baba Banda Singh Bahadur International Foundation has urged the British government to sternly deal with the incidents of racial violence and provide adequate security to life and property of persons of Indian origin and other immigrants settled in England. In a memorandum submitted to the British High Commissioner through the Deputy Commissioner today, president of the body Krishan Kumar Bawa and other functionaries stressed the need to restore peace and order in Britain so as to create a sense of security among the sizable immigrant population living there.

Seminar on oncology

When it comes to health, women have their own health issues that need special considerations. Keeping in view the increasing cases of breast cancer among Indian women, a seminar on oncology was conducted at Kundan Vidya Mandir, Civil Lines. Kunal Jain, medical oncologist from Christian Medical College and Hospital, was the guest of honour.

Workshops on film making

The New York Film Academy (NYFA) plans to conduct workshops in India in October, 2011. The workshops, which will be held in Delhi from October 1, 2011, to October 29, 2011, will comprise shoots on a daily basis giving practical insights to every aspect of the theory that is taught. A group of four to six students will be assigned a camera. Each and every student will direct three films that will help him or her understand and execute the job of a film director.

Scholarships awarded

Senior Citizen Welfare Association in collaboration with Rotary Clubs and Mewa Singh Foundation gave away scholarships, cash prizes and books to students at Government Secondary School, Lalton Kalan, today. Scholarships worth Rs 400 and Rs 300 per month were awarded to two students for a period of eight months. Ten students were given cash prizes of Rs 1,000 each. Free books were given to 30 students. A plantation drive was also carried out.

Survey conducted

In a survey conducted by CSR-GHRDC-2011, Guru Nanak Dev Engineering College, Ludhiana, has been placed at the fifth place. Dr MS Saini, director of the college, said the college had good infrastructure, sustained involvement of the faculty in research and consultancy programmes and an envious record of placement of its scholars in MNCs. — TNS



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