L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Rain havoc in city costs state exchequer Rs 40 cr
MC poorer by Rs 2.25 cr, GLADA Rs 20 lakh, other depts that bore the brunt are health, public health and power board
Puneet Pal Singh Gill
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 16
Heavy rainfall in the past four days in the city and its adjoining areas has cost the public exchequer a whopping Rs 40 crore. The amount is expected to escalate as it does not include losses incurred by the Punjab Mandi Board and several circles of the Public Works Department (PWD) outside the municipal corporation limits, mostly responsible for the construction of roads in rural areas.

Out of this amount of Rs 40 crore, the Ludhiana Municipal Corporation (MC) has suffered a loss of Rs 2.25 crore within the city, which includes damage to roads, human life, animals, houses.

The maximum loss, which is around Rs 18 crore, has been incurred by some circles of the PWD, which are operating from areas which fall right outside the MC limits, but not in the rural areas. The Greater Ludhiana Area Development Authority (GLADA) has suffered a loss of around Rs 20 lakh. The rest of the loss has been incurred by all other government departments including Health, Public Health, Veterinary, Electricity Board and others.

Confirming this, Deputy Commissioner Rahul Tewari said after almost 400 mm of rainfall on Friday and Saturday, all government departments were asked to submit a detailed report by 9 am today.

"All government departments, excluding Punjab Mandi Board and some circles of Public Works Department (PWD), submitted their reports today. It would be on the basis of this loss evaluation, that we would get budget for carrying out repairs in the district. I can say that the city and some of its adjoining areas have suffered a loss of Rs 40 crore," claimed Tewari.

Both Punjab Mandi Board and PWD have been asked to submit their reports by tomorrow morning. "These reports would be compiled and forwarded to Financial Commissioner (Revenue), who would then submit to the state government. The government would then sanction us funds, which would be used for carrying out the repair work in the city," informed the Deputy Commissioner.

The DC further stated that even the link roads in villages have suffered losses. "We would be able to assess the total loss only after the Punjab Mandi Board and PWD submit their reports," claimed the DC.


City witnesses highest rainfall in 40 years
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 16
The industrial city of Ludhiana has, till date, witnessed 964.3 mm of rainfall this monsoon, which is the highest-ever recorded during the past 40 years.

Data available with the agro-meteorological department shows that this is the highest-ever rainfall recorded in the city during the monsoons, with the month of August alone witnessing 497 mm of rainfall till date.

Dr KK Gill, agro-meteorologist at Punjab Agriculture University (PAU) here, said the varsity had the records of rainfall for the past 40 years and this has been the highest rainfall recorded.

"Due to heavy rains, even the minimum and maximum temperatures have fallen to about 4-5 degrees. The minimum temperature has been 22 degrees celsius (normal 25 degrees), while the maximum temperature recorded is 28 degrees celsius. The normal temperature (maximum) in the month of August, otherwise, has been 33.5 degrees celsius," said Dr Gill, adding that during the next 24 hours, similar weather conditions will prevail with rains and cloudy sky all over.

Bad for all crops

Avtar Singh Mehlon, president, BKU, Ludhiana, said the present rainfall was bad for almost all major vegetable and other crops except paddy. "In certain areas, rains can damage the paddy crop too, as many fields are witnessing almost 4-5 feet water in the Bet area. These heavy rains are harmful for vegetable crops. The vegetables for winter season will be planted by the end of September, once monsoons are over," said Mehlon, adding that sunny days ahead could bring respite.



ACRs, records damaged
Charanjit Singh Teja

Ludhiana, August 16
Important records pertaining to criminal cases and ACRs (annual confidential reports) of employees have been damaged due to waterlogging in the basement of the police commissioner's office in the city.

After the rainwater was drained out officials found many important files had been effectively destroyed.

The basement houses hundreds of documents and records pertaining to the crime record office as well as the civil suits, VRK and other branches of the Punjab police. While police officials remained tightlipped about the records that were damaged, sources said several ACR files and other documents of the complaints branch were rendered useless. Besides records computers, furniture, police uniforms and sealed documents also got damaged after sewage water accumulated up to a depth of over 4 feet in the basement, which was engulfed in total darkness due power supply collapsing. Those documents that were salvaged are now being dried outside.

Police commissioner Sharad Satya Parkash Chauhan said: “We haven’t estimated the damage yet will do so in the next few days. Some of the documents were important and irreplaceable but as far as ACR files are concerned we’ll get new ones made.” Meanwhile, cops who had good service records were gripped with anxiety as they were not sure whether their bosses would be able to prepare their files afresh. The police department is now trying to ascertain the causes for the office basement getting waterlogged.



Two boys drown in rainwater pond
Had gone out of their homes to play in a vacant plot
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

An unconsolable Sharda, mother of Vivek, who died due to drowning in Ludhiana on Monday.
An unconsolable Sharda, mother of Vivek, who died due to drowning in Ludhiana on Monday. Photo: Inderjeet Verma

Ludhiana, August 16
Two children reportedly drowned in a large pool of rainwater in a vacant plot situated on the Chandigarh Road near the division no 7 area on Monday evening. Vivek Kumar, 13, and Munish Kumar, 11, both residents of India Colony, entered the area and began playing in the pond. Due to a sudden downpour the level of the rainwater rose and the boys got submerged.

According to area residents, a commuter raised an alarm when he spotted the bodies of both children floating on the surface of the pool. While Vivek died almost instantly Munish was rushed to a multispecialty hospital that referred him to the Christian Medical College & Hospital, where he was declared dead on arrival.

Vivek’s mother, Sharda Devi, said she was unaware when her son and Munish slipped out from their homes and went to the vacant plot. Their parents kept on searching for their children and it was only later in the evening that they came to know about the tragedy.

Munish’s mother, Matu Devi, laid the blame for her son’s death on municipal corporation officials. “The vacant plot was being used as a drain by area residents and roadside vendors and civic officials did not keep a check there”, she added.

Vivek’s father, Varinder Kumar, a rickshaw puller, was in a state of shock. “I lost my only son. Vivek was the only brother of three sisters and was my reason to live. I had pinned all my hopes on him thinking he would look after me in the fag end of my life. I have left with nothing and whatever I had has been snatched away by fate,” he added. Munish’s father, Udesh Kumar, a hosiery factory employee, was inconsolable and bemoaning his fate. “Had it not been a holiday my son would’ve been alive,” he lamented.

Similar incidents this year

n July 15: Two teenagers, Ramji, 18, and Pankaj,17, drowned after falling into the Sidhwan Canal near the BRS Nagar locality

n June 13: Thee youths including two brothers - Varinder Singh, 19, Varun Kaushal, 21, and Tarun Kaushal, 19, died after slipping in the Sutlej river

n June 20: Samuel Bhatti alias Babbi, 40, a resident of Issa Nagri, and Emmanuel, 27, a resident of Ajit Nagar, died after falling in the Sutlej

n May 24: Sidharth, 16, and Gagandeep Singh, 17, both students of Green Land School, drowned in the Sidhwan Canal.



Confusion reigns at Independence Day function
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Rain washed away the Independence Day function as nobody was seen sitting on the stands at the Guru Nanak Stadiumin Ludhiana on Monday.
Spoilsport Rain washed away the Independence Day function as nobody was seen sitting on the stands at the Guru Nanak Stadiumin Ludhiana on Monday. Tribune photos: Himanshu Mahajan

Ludhiana, August 16
Patriotic fervour appeared to be missing among city residents with virtually no one turning up at the Independence Day function held at the Guru Nanak Stadium. Barely 10 minutes after the chief guest, Punjab revenue minister Ajit Singh Kohar, left the venue a stray dog was spotted rummaging on the podium for food right next to a pole from which the Indian tricolour was flying.

Had it not been 500 students of government schools and a handful of freedom fighters, the function would have looked more like a kitty party of ‘babus’, politicians and cops. If rain dampened people’s enthusiasm, the strict security arrangements at the function venue also added as a deterrent.

Confusion prevailed with several freedom fighters, including Dharam Singh, 89, of Doraha, having to walk on foot all the way from SCD Government College to the stadium as they had not been informed about the change in the venue.

A dog sighted at the podium of the function.
A dog sighted at the podium of the function. Tribune photos: Himanshu Mahajan

“No one was sitting at the venue fixed earlier to tell us where the Independence Day function was being held. It was after we came out of the college that we came to know it was being organized at the Guru Nanak Stadium. By this time it had begun drizzling and we had no option but to walk to reach the stadium”, said one of the freedom fighters.

A ‘dharna’ (sit- in) by a group of sweepers, which caused major embarrassment to the police and administration officials, continued for nearly half an hour. It ended only after deputy commissioner Rahul Tiwari and city mayor Hakam Singh Gyaspura assured the protesters their grievances would be looked into.

The spellbinding cultural dance performance by schoolchildren set the tone of the function. Braving heavy rain the students did not relent even for a moment and kept dancing to the beat of patriotic songs.

The public announcement system was the biggest turnoff with the sound from the loudspeaker barely audible. Irritated, some freedom fighters left the venue in a huff. One of them, Nattha Singh, remarked: “The music is not soothing to ears. The shrilling sound made me very uncomfortable, so I decided to leave”.

However, the freedom fighters were visibly happy when they were offered lunch that included burgers and sandwiches. Most of the cops stationed at the function venue were seen getting the photo session done and were busy clicking each others photographs. A senior police official was so excited about the Independence Day parade that he got a constable to record a video on a handycam.

No portable urinals

Though deputy commissioner Rahul Tiwari had given strict instructions for installation of 25 portable urinals at the Independence Day function held at the Guru Nanak Stadium, none were visible at the venue. Women faced a lot of inconvenience and were seen searching for urinals.

Second time unlucky

A 30-year-old polio ridden man was not given a tricycle Independence Day function at he had not got his name registered in the list of recipients. “I was earlier denied a tricycle a month ago when the state health minister distributed tricycle to the physically challenged at a function at Guru Nanak Stadium”, said Raju. 



Roads bear brunt of rain’s fury
Use of sub-standard material in re-carpeting exposes civic body’s working
Puneet Pal Singh Gill
Tribune News Service

A potholed road near Basti Jodhewal.
A potholed road near Basti Jodhewal. Photos :Inderjeet Verma

Drums kept to mark a caved-in section of a road near Baba Than Singh Chowk in Ludhiana on Tuesday.
Drums kept to mark a caved-in section of a road near Baba Than Singh Chowk in Ludhiana on Tuesday. Photos :Inderjeet Verma

Ludhiana, August 16
The incessant rain in the past three days has wreaked havoc on city roads, which have gone from bad to worst.

Sections of roads in certain areas like Pakhowal Road, Sarabha Nagar, Gurdev Nagar, Model Town, Model Town Extension, Rahon Road, Samrala Chowk, Basti Jodhewal Chowk, Ferozepur Road and Ghumar Mandi have been washed away, while in other areas, huge potholes have surfaced.

On the Rahon Road, pits dug for a sewerage project are full of water, which can easily cause accidents. Area residents rue that some pits are over five feet deep.

Similarly, on the Pakhowal Road, the number of potholes has increased, leaving the residents miffed.

Arvind Sharma, a resident of E block of Shaheed Bhagat Singh Nagar, rued that every year, crores of rupees are spent on the re-carpeting of roads in the city. “One heavy rain and the entire public money goes down the drain. A large number of potholes have surfaced on the roads. I wonder why our civic body has failed to act on time and ensure that good quality material is used in the construction of roads,” he said.

Another resident, Kuldeep Singh Khaira, stated that in many areas, sections of roads have caved in, posing a threat to the lives of motorists.

“This is for the first time that so many roads have caved in here. Had the civic authorities set up stormwater drainage system on all city roads, things would have been different and the public money, which would now be used on repair of these roads, could have been saved,” he said.

Senior Deputy Mayor Parveen Bansal said residents had every reason to air their grievances against the civic body.

“Yes, poor quality material was used in the construction of roads in some areas. From now on, we will try to improve the quality of work. We are looking into the matter and those responsible for lapses in the construction or re-carpeting of roads will be dealt with sternly,” claimed Bansal.



Residents rally behind Anna
Anupam Bhagria
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 16
Following the arrest of Anna Hazare (the leader behind the Jan Lokpal Bill) at Mayur Vihar in Delhi this morning even before he started his indefinite fast, many city-based organisations came forward in his support and held protests, rallies, meetings and dharnas.

The day started with a peaceful rally by "Aandolan" a non-government organisation, which started a peaceful rally from SunderNagar and concluded at Division Number 3. Talking to the Tribune Vishal Jain, managing director of Shifaly International School and Anubhav, both members of the NGO, said," We decided to hold this rally yesterday itself in support of Annay Hazaare's campaign. Our fight is not only against corrupt people but also against all wrong doers."

About 100 students of Shifali International School also participated in the rally. The councillor of Ward No 19, Santosh Kalra, also participated in the rally.

JS Grewal, president of the Ludhiana Mini Bus Owners Association, and general secretary of the Small-Scale Bus Operators Association said, "We also held a meeting in support of Anna hazaare and condemned his arrest by the Delhi Police. In the evening, we will hold a joint meeting of autodrivers, bus operators and truck operators to chalk out our next plan of action."

While the Hindu Sikh Jagriti Sena, another NGO, held protest at Shivpuri.

Protest at MP’s house

Two software engineers, Harpreet Singh and Jaskirat Singh, along with some friends protested outside the residence of MP Manish Tiwari and distributed pamphlets in support of Anna Hazare.

SMS, Facebook as Tools

Residents have been flooded with SMSes by Anna supporters for the past two days. A local student, Vishal Jain, says he will launch a Facebook account on the campaign so that people may send their messages to voice their support.

‘We’re with you, Anna’
Hemdeep Kaur speaks to residents on Anna Hazare’s face-off with the Union government on corruption

I am happy that Anna is protesting. The Jan Lokpal Bill is a must to check corruption. my health has prevented me from going and protest with him but I am with Hazare.~

— SP Sood (retd), ASPO, PAU

Anna is today’s Gandhi and students are following him. My friends and I protested against corruption today. It is our way of showing gratitude and support to Anna.

— Sunidhi, a student

The Congress has not acted responsibly on the issue and only focussed on suppression of the protest by Hazare. Everyone has the right to protest against corruption and that is what Anna is doing. We are with Anna and are part of his protest.

— Amit, a resident



LIT sets up committee to supervise repair work
Kuldip Bhatia

Ludhiana, August 16
As the repair and reconstruction of a main road in the F-block of Shaheed Bhagat Singh Nagar near the City Centre has been taken in hand, the Ludhiana Improvement Trust (LIT) has set up a six-member committee of officials and technical experts to oversee the project - estimated to cost upward of Rs 1.25 crore. At the same time, a house in the locality, which had developed a 15-20 feet deep crater due to the cave-in and could have collapsed at any time, was saved with the timely action.

Some 750 to 800 feet length of the main road near the City Centre had caved-in at three places, leaving craters of 35 to 40 feet on the intervening night of August 12 and 13 when the city was lashed with incessant rain which wreaked havoc on the civic infrastructure. The damage caused to the road had cost the LIT around Rs 97.5 lakh.

According to LIT chairman MM Vyas, a sub-committee comprising of ZA Khan, executive officer, LIT; RK Garg, superintending engineer, LIT; Subhash Bansal, a trustee; Tanvir Dhaliwal, area councillor; Pran Bhatia, a member of District Grievances Committee; and an executive engineer of provincial division of PWD (B&R) will supervise the technical and financial aspects of the reconstruction of the road, which commenced today. The work is scheduled to complete within one month.

Officials of the engineering branch of the LIT, who remained at the spot during the last three days to supervise rescue, restoration and repair work, were of the opinion that massive digging carried out for the now abandoned City Centre project and absence of retaining walls had caused damage to the road.

Residents of house number 474-F in the colony, who had a nightmarish experience when the cave-in created a 15-20 feet crater just about 10 feet away from the rear wall of their house, however, heaved a sigh of relief when relentless efforts by the LIT staff and construction crew managed to save the house from a possible collapse due to massive shifting of earth from underneath. Gopal Kaushal, owner of the house, said the district authorities had, at one time, directed them to shift to a safer place till the time the possibility of the collapse of the house was completely ruled out. “But the engineering officials of the LIT and construction team deployed to save the house did a good job.” 



Cultural programmes mark day
Our Correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh/Payal, August 16
The Independence Day was celebrated with great zeal and enthusiasm. The national flag was unfurled at the Grain Market by Amrik Singh Jandali, chairman market committee, and Iqbal Singh Jhoondan, MLA Dhuri and SAD in-charge Amargarh assembly segment.

Besides felicitating Tek Chand Diwana, a freedom fighter, organisers honoured office-bearers of various social and educational organisations of the area.

Municipal Council president Usha Sood unfurled the Tricolour at an official function held at the town hall and block Congress committee president Harjinder Singh Nathumajra hoisted the national flag during a function organised by the Bharat Vikas Parishad at Bhagat Singh Chowk. Dr Neeru Katyal, SDM Payal, unfurled the flag at the Grain Market at Payal. A cultural programme was presented by students to mark the occasion.



Day I: Company faces wrath of garbage collectors
Protesters manhandle staff; throw dustbins in Sidhwan Canal
Puneet Pal Singh Gill
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 16
The very first day of door-to-door garbage collection was marred with protests by a group of private garbage collectors, who not only protested against the private company hired for the job, but even manhandled its staff, broke windowpanes of their vehicles, threw brand new garbage bins in the Sidhwan Canal and even threw garbage on the roads.

The extent of protest was such that the Sarabha Nagar police had to register a case against protestors and even arrested one person, who was released on bail later.

This all happened in a few hours of the start of the door-to-door garbage collection by A2Z Infrastructure Private Limited yesterday morning.

Company officials were so frightened that the Ludhiana Municipal Corporation (LIT) authorities, too, took rounds of these wards today and the work has resumed under the police supervision and vigil.

As the collection from various households of these two wards continued, a group of private garbage collectors, numbering more than 100, disrupted the work by beating company’s helpers, supervisors and drivers carrying out this task.

Aniruddha Laskar, senior manager-PR, A2Z Infrastructure Private Limited, informed that one Compactor and four Tata Aces were damaged and four of their employees were badly beaten up, who had to be admitted to the Civil Hospital for treatment.

“Three cycle rickshaws carrying bins went missing, while dustbins meant for each household, too, were damaged and metal bins lined along roadsides were turned upside down.

A few metal bins were thrown in the Sidhwan Canal linking the city adjoining our parking bay given to us by the MC authorities,” informed Laskar.

Inspector Gurdev Singh, SHO of Sarabha Nagar police station, informed that after this incident, a case under Sections 323, 341, 148, 149, 427 and 506 of the IPC was registered against unknown persons yesterday.

“One person, identified as Om Vir, a resident of Sunet, was nabbed and handed over to the police by company officials,” said the SHO.

Surinder Kalyan, chairman of Valmiki Samaj Bachao Andolan, who has been protesting against giving of this contract to a private company, refuted that he was behind this incident. “Though we held a protest yesterday, they were some others, who manhandled the company staff and damaged their vehicles. All we want is that the company hiring the staff should accommodate maximum people from the Valmiki community and should pay them handsome salary,” he claimed.



Rural govt schools give celebrations a miss
Violation of education department’s instructions
Jaswant Shetra

Jagraon, August 16
What is being seen as a massive violation of the education department’s instructions regarding the Independence Day celebrations in all government schools in the state, a majority of the government schools in the rural areas gave a miss to such an important function.

Most of the government schools did not organise any function to mark the day in spite of written instructions issued to heads of various schools and district education officials through an official letter issued by the office of director general school education and state project director of the Sarv Siksha Abhiyan, Punjab.

According to the instructions, all district education officials and heads of various government schools have been instructed to hold the Independence Day function in their schools to infuse a feeling of patriotism among students.

As per the instructions mentioned in the letter issued in May 2009, all schools must erect flagpoles and three circled bases to hoist the national flag during the Independence Day function. Besides this, it has also been instructed that the national flag should always remain hoisted in the schools to enlighten the young students about the importance of nationalism.

During a visit to various government schools in different villages of the region, it was found that though the flagpoles have been erected, neither any function was organised nor the national flag was hoisted, thus nullifying the purpose behind issuing these instructions.

Even schools were provided grants to accomplish the task of erecting flagpoles with round bases and repairing damaged buildings in the schools, the question arises here that if the very purpose for which the huge grants were issued is not being achieved, what is the meaning of issuing grants and instructions to these schools.

When contacted, district education officer, Ludhiana (senior secondary), Sudesh Bajaj said she was not in a position to comment on the issue, as she had joined the office only a few days back. When asked whether the schools in the rural areas have violated the education department’s instructions regarding celebrating the Independence Day, she said, “Let me find out if departmental instructions were violated. I would review the Independence Day celebrations organised in all schools and if any kind of violation is found, an appropriate action will be taken against the person responsible for violations.”



Gurthali bridge-Doraha road: Motorists driving on the edge
Lovleen Bains

Doraha, August 16
Driving on the stretch along the Sirhind canal between the Gurthali bridge and the town, especially for those undertaking journey downstream, is fraught with danger, as eroded edges pose an imminent threat to the lives of motorists even as the authorities seem to look the other way.

“At certain places, edges of the road are so weak that they may give way any time, thereby posing a threat to the lives of unsuspecting motorists,” said a passerby.

“The authorities should act in earnest and restrict the movement of traffic on the damaged sections or fix these for the safety of commuters,” said another motorist.

“Monsoon has wreaked havoc on roads, as rainwater has eaten up the edges and made the journey perilous. At a number of places between Gurthali Bridge and Doraha, edges have virtually vanished,” rued another commuter.

“The authorities are only concerned about the completion of their four-laning project and are least concerned about the risks these damaged sections pose to the lives of motorists,” he said.

The occupants of a car had a narrow escape recently, when its driver failed to notice a missing berm of the road.

The car ended up upside down but the occupants escaped with minor cuts and bruises.

“Although the work on the four-laning of the road should go on, the need of the hour is to repair the damaged patches, especially at places where portions of roads are missing. Merely putting a stick in the middle of the road to warn the traffic isn’t enough. The authorities should carry out repair work on a priority basis.”

“Cattlemen grazing their animals further compound the problem, as their animals appear suddenly on the road, making it difficult for speeding vehicles to negotiate them,” he added.

Driving at night is a challenge in itself, and the incessant rain has made the task even harder.

Canal department in-charge Angrez Singh said they would put up proper signboards and get the damaged patches repaired.



Patriotic fervour witnessed on I-Day
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 16
The Independence Day celebrations at KVM School, Civil Lines, began with a “Prabhat Pheri” in which 500 students participated carrying the national flag and banners with patriotic slogans. The Tricolour was hoisted by chief guest Ashwani Kumar, manager, Shri Kundan Lal Trust. The students presented patriotic songs on the occasion.

Green Land

Schoolchildren of Green Land Public School paid homage to martyrs and expressed their love and concern for the nation through songs and dances. The chief guest on the occasion was district forest officer Naresh Mahajan. Principal Baldeep Pandher exhorted the students to become harbingers of peace and spread love around them.

Ryan International

At Ryan International School, students saluted the national flag after a march past. Students presented a thematic show comprising of patriotic songs and dance. Students of Class XII were felicitated for their achievements. The day was also celebrated with fervour at BVM School, Kitchlu Nagar, and SDP School. A march past and cultural programme were the highlights of the Independence Day celebrations at BCM Arya Model School, Shastri Nagar. The national flag was hoisted by chief guest Col Rajeev Soni. The cultural programme included bhangra and dance performances.

Tagore school

Kalbelia, a Rajasthani dance, and giddha performances comprised the cultural programme at Tagore Public School. Prof Rajinder Bhandari, vice-chairman, Punjab State Planning Board, was the chief guest.

Vardhman school

Schoolchildren presented a rhythmic show and “Unity in Diversity”. “Mile Sur Mera Tumhara” was also performed by the students. Chief guest NN Diwan, a freedom fighter, unfurled the national flag on the occasion.

SDP school

The Independence Day was celebrated with fervour at SDP School.

BVM school

Patriotic songs and speeches marked the day at BVM School, Kitchlu Nagar.



GNIMT students excel in PTU exams

Ludhiana, August 16
Final year MBA students of the Guru Nanak Institute of Management and Technology, (GNIMT), Model Town, Ludhiana, have achieved excellence by securing nearly 100 per cent result with two students securing more than 90 per cent marks.

Gurleen Kaur stood first in the PTU exams with 91.3 per cent marks and was awarded a gold medal. Neha Aggarwal stood second with 91.2per cent. Neha Verma and Aneesa secured third place with 88 per cent marks, whereas Mamta Chaudhary and Sonam Singla secured 87.3 per cent and 86.5 per cent marks respectively. As many as 104 students out of 118 have obtained more than 70 per cent marks. Out of 118 students, who appeared in the exams, 45 students have obtained between 80 and 90 per cent marks. — TNS



Woman burnt alive, 3 held

Ludhiana, August 16
Raj Kaur, a 22-year-old married woman, was burnt alive by her in-laws for not bringing enough dowry at Machiankalan village, here yesterday. The Meharbaan police has arrested the woman’s husband, father-in-law and mother-in-law after booking them under Sections 304-B and 34 of the IPC.

Meharbaan police station SHO Sumit Sood said the woman’s in-laws set her on fire after dousing her with kerosene. He said Raj Kaur was married to Paramjit Singh one and half years ago. They used to have frequent fights.

“On Raksha Bandhan i.e. August 13, Raj Kaur along with her husband went to tie Rakhi to her brother. However, Paramjit Singh indulged in a scuffle with his in-laws (Raj Kaur’s parents) there. A PCR team was called in by the in-laws when things went out of hand. The police effected a compromise between the two sides and the couple returned home,” the SHO said, adding that to avenge the humiliation, Paramjit Singh along with his father Gurnam Singh and mother Gurdev Kaur burnt Raj Kaur alive.

As per the complainant, Raj Kaur’s grandfather Vishal Singh, her in-laws and husband used to demand one thing or the other from the victim’s family.

“They had demanded a motorcycle on Raksha Bandhan, which the family could not afford to give. As their demand was not fulfilled, the accused set Raj Kaur on fire,” alleged Vishal Singh, adding that the couple did not have any child. — TNS



Man booked for attempted rape
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 16
The owner of Gurdev International, New Shivaji Nagar, has been booked on an attempt to rape charge by the police at Division Number 7.

The police said, the complaint had been lodged by the father of 20-year-old girl, Neelam (name changed), who had joined the firm as a computer operator about 15 days ago.

The police said, the owner called Neelam to the factory on pretext of some work and reportedly offered her a drink laced with sedative. The owner along with his friend tried to rape Neelam who managed to escape but was hit on the head following which she began bleeding. Both the accused fled the scene and called up Neelam’s father informing him about Neelam’s injury during a mishap. The accused also told Neelam’s father that she had been admitted at the Civil Hospital. But when her father reached the hospital he could not find his daughter. Later, he went to the factory and found his daughter in an unconscious state. A case has been registered. 



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