L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Two labourers killed, 3 hurt as laser machine explodes
Machine used for processing quilts got overheated
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 23
Two labourers were killed and three injured following an explosion in the laser unit of a blanket manufacturing company, located in the Meharban area here, around midnight.

The victims have been identified as 45-year-old Ram Agya and 35-year-old Ram Kumar, both from Bihar. While Ram Agya died on the spot, Ram Kumar succumbed to his burns on the way to hospital.

As per the investigating officer, the injured have been admitted to the CMCH and the DMCH with severe burns. Their condition is stated to be serious.

The police said the blast took place at Young Man factory after a laser machine in which acrylic quilts were being processed, got overheated. Labourers went to sleep after putting the quilts in the laser machine, which got overheated and sent out two alarms. On hearing the emergency alarm, the security guard rushed to wake up the labourers and told them to switch off the boiler. When they were doing so, the machine exploded.

Such was the impact of the blast that the unit was badly damaged and hosiery material was strewn all over the place. The police is probing if the factory owner unit had procured an NOC for running the unit.

The explosion spread panic and labourers ran for cover. Residents living in the vicinity were shocked and started running out of their houses.

Nearly 100 labourers along with relatives of the victims staged a dharna against the factory owner and demanded action against him for negligence. The police prevented the situation from turning ugly. It had to use force to disperse the crowd.

The relatives of the victims alleged that the police was shielding the unit owner and that the evidence had been tampered with. They alleged that several workers were injured in the blast, but the police and the factory owner were not divulging the details of the other workers.

Deputy Commissioner Rahul Tiwari has ordered a magisterial probe into the incident. The SDM (east) will conduct the probe.

Meanwhile, family members of the victims gathered at the hospital and demanded compensation from the unit owner, saying that he had put the lives of labourers at risk by allegedly forcing them to work overtime.

The Station house Officer (SHO) said the police had registered a case against the owner.


20 boiler blasts reported last year
Unskilled workers compounding risk
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 23
The boiler blast which claimed two lives has again brought to the fore the safety of labourers working in such units. The incident has revealed how labourers are risking their lives by doing overtime to earn a few extra bucks.

Scores of such incidents have taken place in the past when labourers sustained serious injuries while taking a nap as they worked on the boilers. About 20 cases of boiler blasts were reported last year.

Explosions in boiler and laser units are common in the city during this time of the year. In order to meet deadlines for winter orders, unit owners hire the services of non-technical workers, which often leads to fatal accidents.

There are around 1,500 boiler and laser units in the city. In the absence of trained professionals, these machines are handled by non-technical persons and even labourers. The industry barely follows the Indian Boiler Regulations (IBR).

“Generally, there is no problem with machines or boilers. The reason for such incidents is unskilled work force,” said an operator at a dyeing unit located near the factory where the incident took place.

The owner of a dyeing unit said: “No one in the industry wants such incidents to take place. We have to meet deadlines during the peak season and we try to accomplish work as soon as possible. We ask operators to work cautiously on boilers. If they work carelessly, we should not be held responsible. During the peak season, the skilled labour charges a premium and often heads towards other units where they get more money.”



Victims’ families have no support system
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 23
Lali Devi, wife of Guddu Shah, who was injured when a laser machine burst, was shocked to learn about his burns in the morning. Though the incident took place at around 1 am, she was told about it only in the morning.

“I was shocked to know that my husband was seriously injured in the blast. I don’t know how to react. I am all alone in the city. My husband has a few friends and one of them is here with me to take care of my husband,” she said.

“I have been here since morning. Factory employees have been told to take care of us, but I feel alone. I don’t know if my kids have had anything to eat. My husband is the only bread-winner in the family. He may not be able to work for two-three months. How will we run our home?” a worried Lali Devi asked.

The injured — Guddu Shah, Pappu, Ashok and Vivek — have been hospitalised and the treatment expenses are being borne by the factory owner.

But the attendants of the injured are worried about their future. “Families of the victims and all those who have been injured have no relatives here. Our future seems bleak,” said Lali Devi.



Drug addict murders neighbour
Robbed her before attacking her with sharp-edged weapon
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 23
A drug addict killed Saira Bano, a 32-year-old woman and a resident of Tibba Road, in broad daylight here today.

Area residents said Gaurav, about 22 years old, was a drug addict and the victim’s neighbour. He had gone to the house of Zafar Alam, husband of the victim, at around 8 am to ask for monetary help. They gave him Rs 500 and Zafar went to leave his children to school.

When Saira Bano was alone at home with her three-year-old daughter, Aafreen, the accused entered their house again and took away money and snatched Saira Bano’s gold chain. He then attacked her with a sharp-edged weapon. While he was committing the crime, Aafreen ran to a neighbour’s house crying loudly.

The neighbour, Harjinder Kaur, went to Zafar’s place to enquire why the girl was crying so much. When she reached the house, she was shocked to see Gaurav attacking Saira Bano. She tried to save Saira, but Gaurav attacked her too and fled.

Assistant Sub-Inspector (ASI) Gurmeet Singh said the police reached the spot within 15 minutes of receiving the information. “The couple belonged to Bihar and had settled here for the past several years. They had constructed their own house. The victim had three children. The accused is expected to be arrested soon,” he claimed.

Bablu Quraishi, a resident, claimed that a “self-styled” Congress leader tried to give the incident a political colour and asked people to raise slogans against the police. It could have taken a communal colour if senior police officials had not intervened. Some people did not let the police take away the body to the Civil Hospital for a postmortem for over two hours.



With no visas, MC team puts off Canada visit
Puneet Pal Singh Gill
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 23
The visit of Ludhiana Municipal Corporation (MC) officials to Abbotsford in Canada has been cancelled after the delegation members failed to get visas on time. They were to reach Abbotsford for vital interaction tomorrow and the Mayor had stated that if the visas did not arrive on time, the visit would have to be cancelled as the meetings would have begun and it would be meaningless to reach late.

The nine-member MC delegation led by Mayor Hakam Singh Giaspura, includes Deputy Mayor Sunita Aggarwal, councillors Gurdeep Singh Neetu (BJP), Parminder Mehta (Congress), Harbhajan Singh Dang and Mandeep Kaur Sandhu (both from SAD), Additional Commissioners Kuldip Singh and Amarjit Singh Sekhon and the Mayor’s personal assistant.

Giaspura said some of them had received the visas today, but there was some problem with the visas of other delegation members. “We have decided to postpone this visit and fix another date. If we go to Canada, we will go there as a delegation and not just four persons. Moreover, the city is without MC Commissioner, so I decided that I should stay back and keep a check on development projects,” he said.

Yesterday, Giaspura had said there was some problem in getting the visas as seven out of nine delegation members had applied for a Canadian visa for the first time.



Civil Surgeon’s office not in pink of health
Monsoon takes toll, roof leaks, documents damaged
Anupam Bhagria
Tribune News Service

Electricity wires hanging out of a junction box; and below (left) the broken ceiling in the Civil Surgeon’s office in Ludhiana
Electricity wires hanging out of a junction box

Ludhiana, August 23
Monsoon has taken its toll on civil surgeon’s office. Not only the building, but the records and important documents kept in the iron cupboards has been damaged.

The record of the general medical and F-forms of the PNDT Act have been damaged by rainwater due to leaking roofs. The small office, which shelters the general medical record, deals with the medical certificates, which are issued to a candidate before joining a government job. A visitor to this office is taken by surprise when he finds the wet record kept in a sheet of cloth under a table and a broken chair. Ironically, the chair on which the employee concerned works is without the backrest for months.

A road cave-in in front of the Civil Surgeon’s office in Ludhiana
A road cave-in in front of the Civil Surgeon’s office in Ludhiana. Photo: Inderjeet Verma
The broken ceiling in the Civil Surgeon’s office in Ludhiana
The broken ceiling in the Civil Surgeon’s office in Ludhiana. Photos: Inderjeet Verma

Even as the boundary wall of the civil surgeon’s office caved in a month ago, the things have not changed till date. Moreover, the room where NRHM employees sit has a broken ceiling. Pointing out towards roof, a female employee said: “It leaks when it rains."

Another female employee complained: “The record of the PNDT Act in which we get the F-form filled in by different centres has also been damaged. The rainwater that seeps into the office from the walls has damaged records. But there is no other place to keep it.”

A mesh of electricity wires are dangerously dangling out of a wooden box and can invite tragedy any moment. An employee at the office rued: “There is no water facility in the toilets. We have to request class IV employees to get the water from outside before using toilets.”

Even my residence leaks: CMO

There was a growth of grass on the top of the building and it was obstructing the rainwater flow to the drain pipes. The grass has been removed now. I have the knowledge of wet record, but I suppose it is not much. We have also asked the departments concerned to take away the record which is over 10 years old. We need an accommodation in the mini-secretariat. My predecessor has already written to the Deputy Commissioner about the new office building. I remained busy and could not pursue the matter. Now, I will also talk to him. The building is too old and even the roof of my residence leaks.

Dr HS Bali, Ludhiana chief medical officer



Toll up by 10 pc at Ladhowal barrier
Comes into effect from Sept 1
Puneet Pal Singh Gill
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 23
The next time you use the Grand Trunk (GT) Road for crossing the toll plaza at Ladhowal, get ready to shell out more money.

From September 1 this year, the company managing the toll plaza, Soma-Isolux NH One Tollway Private Limited, has hiked the rates for all vehicles.

Company employees said there had been an increase of almost 10 per cent in the toll charges.

The increase in the toll will come into effect from September 1 and will remain so till August 31 next year. Company officials have termed it as a routine exercise.

“The rates are increased every year in September. It is a routine exercise,” claimed an official of Soma-Isolux tollway private limited.

Not only the Ladhowal toll barrier, but also rates for the Karnal toll plaza and the Shambhu toll plaza have been increased.

At the Ladhowal toll barrier commuters travelling in a car, Jeep or passenger van will have to pay Rs 94 for a single visit (through trip), Rs 140 for a daily pass (24 hours) and Rs 2,822 for a monthly pass.

Earlier, the commuters were charged Rs 85 for a single visit and Rs 128 for a daily pass. In what comes as some relief, the monthly pass rates remain the same and have not been changed.

For the Karnal plaza, commuters travelling in a car, Jeep or passenger van will have to pay Rs 90, Rs 135 and Rs 2,697, for a single visit, daily pass and monthly pass, respectively.

Similarly, at the Shambhu toll plaza, people travelling in a car, Jeep or passenger van will have to give Rs 54, Rs 80 and Rs 1,618, respectively.



Garbage Collection
Valmiki samaj members oppose MC’s decision
Pvt company gets contract
Puneet Pal Singh Gill
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 23
Expressing resentment over the municipal corporation’s decision to outsource the work of door-to-door garbage collection to a private company-A2Z Infrastructure Pvt Ltd, members of the Valmiki Samaj Bachao Andolan staged a protest at Zone D office today.

The members demanded that the contract of A2Z Infrastructure Pvt Ltd should be cancelled so that thousands of people, who are involved in the collection of garbage, are not rendered jobless.

Surinder Kalyan, chairman of the Valmiki Samaj Bachao Andolan, lamented that a private company dealing with the solid waste management was paying Rs 3,600 per month to people collecting garbage from homes.

“While private garbage collectors earn around Rs 6,000 to Rs 7,000 every month. And it is with this money that they are taking care of their families. The company officials are paying half the amount of what the private garbage collectors are earning which is not fair. That is why, we are protesting against them,” claimed Kalyan.

Kalyan stated that A2Z Infrastructure Pvt Ltd would be generating power from solid waste collected from the city. “If the company officials want to go ahead with the project, they can collect garbage straight from garbage dumps. Why are they (company officials) adamant on snatching job of thousands of private garbage collectors,” questioned Surinder Kalyan.



Two student groups clash
Charanjit Singh Teja

Ludhiana, August 23
A minor clash took place between two groups of boys in front of SCD Government College here today.

Self-styled presidents of government college came to blows on the issue of ‘presidentship’. There were reports of three gunshots fired by members of one of the groups near a filling station in Daad village. However, the police failed to confirm this.

A group of students led by Sunny Hambran and Kaka Grewal announced Harman Bulara as the new president of the college after removing the posters of the present incumbent, Bindu Grewal, in front of the college.

Infuriated, the Bindu Grewal group reached the spot and started removing the posters of the ‘new president’. This led to a minor clash between the two groups.

However, both the groups have denied the reports of a clash.

Bulara said, "Boys elected me the president of the college. Today, nothing serious happened, though there was a minor clash."

On the other hand, Bindu Grewal said: "Our posters from the college gate had been removed. We went there to set the record straight. But there was no violent clash."

Meanwhile, principal of SCD College Jasbir Kaur Makkar said: "I heard about the clash. But it was outside the college campus. I don’t know how many students from the college were involved in this clash. If some student from the college is involved, we will take a disciplinary action against him."

Gurpreet Singh, SHO of Division Number 8 police station, said: "No one has lodged a complaint with us. The incident is not even in my notice," said.



City cold stores flooded with potatoes
Bumper crop in other states leads to glut; no demand for local crop, farmers suffer loss
Anupam Bhagria
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 23
With the bumper potato crop in other states, Punjab is again on the brink of facing a potato glut after 11 years. The crop of Punjab is not being sold and is lying in the cold stores.

Talking to the Tribune, Amarveer Singh, general secretary of the Punjab State Fruit Vegetable Commission Agents Association said: “Due to the bumper crop, we are not able to get the prices which we got last year. Last year, the wholesalers sold ‘pahari’ potatoes between Rs 12 and Rs 18 per kilogram. However, the prices have fallen to Rs 6 to Rs 10 per kilogram this year. Similarly, local potatoes were sold between Rs 8 and Rs 10 per kilogram, but this year, we are getting Rs 2 to Rs 4 per kilogram.”

The city's cold stores are still flooded with potatoes, which were stored in February and March. Amarveer, who also owns a cold store, said: “We supply potatoes to Jammu and Kashmir, Madhya Pardesh, Utter Pardesh, etc. But this year, we did not get any orders as there is no demand.”

Subhash Chander, owner of Kisan Cold Store, said: “Only sugar-free and ‘pahari’ potatoes are in demand, while the local potatoes are still lying packed in the cold stores. We have to pay more for storing local potatoes as they are stored under 55 degrees Celcius and thus requires more electricity."

There are more than a dozen cold stores in the city.

Meanwhile, the retail shopkeepers are making profits. Sewak Ram, one of the retail vegetable sellers, said: “We sell local potatoes for Rs 10 a kilogram and pahari for Rs 20 per kilogram. Even we have to earn something in this world.”



Youths draw blank on Teej
For some it’s a dance contest and for others it’s a cultural class
Charanjit Singh Teja

Ludhiana, August 23
Teej is a monsoon celebration. That’s the only relevant piece of information that the city girls have about this festival.

In a random survey carried out by this correspondent, students from various city colleges were asked about the significance of Teej. 90 per cent of them drew blank.

"The festival of Teej is like a dance programme for me," said a girl, fresh with her experience of participating in a dance contest. Another girl from a local college quipped, "This festival helps in rooting out the innate shyness among girls." Another equally strange response was: "It’s like a cultural class."

Ironically, most colleges celebrate the festival with fanfare, inviting mediapersons and sending out a detailed list of programmes like mehndi competition, beauty contest, rangoli, embroidery, histrionics and sehra making.

“It’s unfortunate that youngsters don’t know much about their traditions. Perhaps, this MTV generation has no interest in Punjabi heritage and culture," rued a retired professor. He added that the college authorities might arrange for culture-oriented contests, but till the students were made to understand the significance of these traditional arts and crafts, they would confine themselves only to the competition part. "At the most, these contests would inculcate the competitive spirit, but students will continue to be woefully inadequate when it comes to the cultural matters," he added.



300 science models put on display
Gurvinder Singh

Ludhiana, August 23
New high-tech roads, growing crops without soil, planting saplings in remote areas through cannon, innovative ways of generating and saving energy and many innovative solutions to challenges of the future were put on display through science models on the first day of two-day regional-level CBSE science exhibition.

Zest to change the future is all-pervasive at Green Land Public School, GT road, as students of 150 schools from Punjab, Chandigarh, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu & Kashmir are participating in the exhibition with 300 science models.

Models were based on the theme “Science and Technology for Challenges in Life” which is further categorised into sub-themes of bio-diversity conservation and sustenance, agriculture and technology, green energy, transport and communication, community health and environment, mathematical modelling.

Models from small to large, simple to sophisticated were displayed. Students were busy explaining the functioning of their models through PowerPoint presentations.

Harsh from BCM School, Chandigarh road, said creating a model was the first step towards his engineering dream. Amandeep Singh and Ankit Sharma from Dayanand Public School, Shimla, presented a model on generating electricity through saline water, while Saarthak Wattal from SOS Harmann Gmeiner School, Jammu, dwelt on removal of tumour through novel method. “Many schools have come with great models. It is a good learning experience to see so many technologies,” says Japan of DPS Amritsar.

Nine experts from the PAU evaluated the models. Fifteen best models will be chosen for the national-level exhibition to be held in October.



Guru Nanak students shine
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 23
Two students of Guru Nanak Khalsa College for Women, Gujarkhan Campus, Model Town, participated and won prizes in the district-level Bal Sahitya Quiz. Richa of B.A.- final year bagged he first position followed by Rajbir Kaur of B.A. final-year who won the second position. The quiz was conducted by the Bhasha Vibhag, Punjab. Principal Dr.Karamjit Kaur Virdi felicitated the students and wished them luck for the future.



More support pours in for Anna
Charanjit Singh Teja

Ludhiana, August 23
People from different walks of life in Ludhiana continued their support to Anna Hazare’s protest against corruption.

A group of activists from "India Against Corruption" an NGO, went to MP Manish Tiwari’s residence and placed cards of "get well soon" along with rose sticks outside the main gate of his house.

The Punjab People’s Party also organised a protest at the mini-secretariat in the favour of Anna’s movement.

However, Bapu Surat Singh kept on waiting the whole day for the health department personnel to collect his blood in a syringe to write a letter the President of India.

Considering the Anna Hazare’s movement as the second fight for freedom, Ex-servicemen Welfare Society president RS Sohi said: "All ex-servicemen are with Anna. We will do everything to support his movement till the Janlokpal Bill is passed. We propose that each Member of Parliament be asked to answer whether he supports the bill or not. If he says no he should be boycotted for life.”

“The support for Anna Hazare is increasing. People are taking individual initiatives to promote Anna’s campaign. Favouring the proposed Janlokpal bill of team Anna, people are sending text massages on mobiles. A signature campaign is on,” PS Toor, an Anna supporter, said.



From schools

Students of GMT Public school take out a rally in support of Anna Hazare in LudhianaStudents take out rally

ludhiana: Students of GMT Public School, Jalandhar Bypass, took out a rally in support of Anna Hazare. Holding banners and placards, they raised anti-corruption and anti-government slogans.

Students of GMT Public school take out a rally in support of Anna Hazare in Ludhiana. photo: inderjeet verma

Class presentation

A “class presentation programme” was organised at Kundan Vidya Mandir, Civil Lines, here today with an objective of providing chance to all students to perform and exhibit their talent. Students presented songs, poems, skits and dances depicting the greatness of our country. Patriotic songs and poems were recited.

Cervical cancer prevention

Dr Vijaydeep Kaur, MD in gynaecology from DMC, Ludhiana, addressed girl students from classes IX to XII at GN International School, Model Town, on "Cervical cancer screening and prevention". The objective was to make girls aware of the new vaccination against cervical cancer.

Janamashatmi celebrated

Janamashtami was celebrated at Spring Dale Public School with religious fervour. Dance was performed followed by chanting of mantras. The festival was also celebrated at Green Grove Public School.

Inter-playway competition

Jesus Sacred Heart School hosted 'Melange-2011', an inter-playway school competition comprising dance and fancy dress shows by tiny tots.

Incredible India show

A musical show ‘Incredible India’ was performed by students at DCM Presidency School. During the show, they danced on "Mera Bharat Mahaan". They also performed Rajasthani folk dance “jhoomar” and Assamese dance. A play "Banavati Jeevan Shaili" based on education of girl child was also staged. Giddha and bhangra were also performed. — TNS



NRHM employees refuse to call off stir
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 23
Employees of the National Rural Health Mission today threatened to boycott the three-day pulse polio campaign to be held from August 28 to 30. They shouted slogans against the state government outside the Civil Surgeon’s office.

Rajinder Singh, state spokesperson of the NRHM union, said, “Today, representatives of the union held a meeting with principal secretary (health) Satish Chandra and Health and Family Welfare Minister Satpal Gosain in Chandigarh. We were asked to call off the strike. But the employees did not agree to it. So the protest will continue.”

Comedy play

Comedy play “Adhe Adhure” produced and directed by Lillete Dubey will be staged at Guru Nanak Bhawan on September 3. This will be the 83rd programme of Ludhiana Sanskritik Samagam (LSS). This was shared by the LSS during an interaction with mediapersons at a hotel here today.

Super bumper crop

The reason behind the potato glut is the super bumper crop in Bangalore, Himachal Pardesh and Uttar Pardesh. Gurpinder Singh Neelon, a potato grower of Ludhiana district, said: “After 2000, this is again a year of potato glut. We are suffering huge loss. This year, I suffered a loss of around Rs 15 lakh due to bumper crop in other states. We spend more than Rs 30,000 per acre for potato crop, but the output is not up to the mark. However, the retail shopkeepers and commission agents are earning profits. We sell local potatoes to them for Rs 3 per kilogram and they sell the same for Rs 15 a kilo. Moreover, the cold stores have also increased the rent from Rs 55 to Rs 75 per quintal.”

More crop, less demand

Whenever there is bumper crop, people demand less. General secretary of the Punjab State Fruit Vegetable Commission Agents Association Amarveer Singh said: “Whenever the crop is less, people start storing it. But when the production is more, people do not bother to stock it and buy it in routine."



Beware, ‘clammy’ buildings can make you sick
Gurvinder Singh

Ludhiana, August 23
Beware! If you think remaining indoors in air-conditioned offices can save you from sniffing dirt in this polluted city. There are a large number of buildings, particularly the office, which might make you “sick”. It is urgent to get out of the room if it gets clammy mainly during the rainy season, say medical experts.

According to Sanjay Goel, an architect, such buildings, which have been converted into offices, are cause of concern as employees work throughout the day.

“Sick-building syndrome” is a condition when ailments associated with an individual’s workplace or residence occurs and no specific cause of illness could be identified. It can lead to irritation of eyes, nose or throat or skin irritations, depression and other health-related problems. Dr Narinder Pal Jain said damp buildings could cause fungal infection and asthma during the rainy season. “One can lose concentration power, cognitive and decision-making abilities besides becoming inefficient if buildings aren’t well ventilated. If the people-ACs’ ratio isn’t adequate enough in the offices, it can lead to drowsiness and fatigue. Things worsen if buildings aren’t well ventilated and lighted,” says Dr Tushar Arora. “Working long hours in such buildings can result in deficiency of vitamin D due to reduced exposure to sunlight. This can disturb your circadian rhythm, which in turn, could cause further problems,” he added.

Balwinder Singh, a landscape consultant, Nature Tree Foundation, suggests that indoor plants with broad leaf are beneficial in improving the quality of air. “Plants like areca palm, raphis palm, schflera, aglonema, croton, varities of ficus, china palm and varieties of other plants help in increasing the oxygen level in the air and absorbing toxins. Not all plants can be kept indoor,” he adds.



Signboard painters don’t really matter
New-age flex signboards, hoardings deal deathblow to old art
Charanjit Singh Teja

Ludhiana, August 23
New-age signboards and hoardings have dealt a deathblow to the age-old profession of signboard painting.

“There was a time when customers would come to us, requesting us to spare five minutes for them. But today, we keep waiting for someone to come to us,” says 52-year-old Vijay, a painter. His father had migrated to the city from Lahore and was a full-time painter near Deepak Cinema. Vijay followed into his footsteps and continued this line of work even after his father’s death. He earned enough till 1995, but there has been a sharp decline in his earnings over the last decade. Now he wants to quit his profession, but has no alternative.

Vijay’s case is not an isolated one. It is the same story for most signboard painters. Computerised flex boards have rendered hundreds of signboard painters jobless as city roads and chowks shine with colourful computerised hoardings.

Birju, whose only source of income is the “commission” he receives for referring a client to a flex board maker, says: “A painter cannot afford flex machines. At least an investment of Rs 20 lakh is needed to install a solvent machine. We people live from hand to mouth.”

“We are artists. We do not know the path of agitation. The government should do something for us,” says Ram Singh Azad, a signboard painter who operates from near the bus stand.

Ironically, the city has witnessed a magnificent past of signboard painting. “Bhatia Painter” at Trankan Wala Bazaar, “Ram Bajj Painter” at Dholewal Chowk and “Ram Painter” near the Clock Tower Chowk were once famous in the city for banner, wall and number plate paintings.

Jaspal Singh, owner of a flex company, says: “A huge investment is required for this business. The cost of the upper range of machines runs into crores of rupees. Poor painters can never buy such costly machines.”

Rakesh Kumar, a flex board maker, adds: “People prefer the flex boards because these are cheaper than artistic work. Also, these have more features like photos and logos.”



Comedy play to be staged on Sept 3
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 23
Comedy play “Adhe Adhure” produced and directed by Lillete Dubey will be staged at Guru Nanak Bhawan on September 3. This will be the 83rd programme of Ludhiana Sanskritik Samagam (LSS). This was shared by the LSS during an interaction with mediapersons at a hotel here today.

The classic play written by Mohan Rakesh, a Sahitya Akademi award winner, was staged on June 1 in Mumbai at the National Centre for Performing Arts. Adhe Adhure has won the Sangeet Natak Akademi Award. Main actors in the play are Lillete Dubey, Ira Dubey, Mohan Agashe, Anuschka Sawhney, Rajeev Siddhartha, Bhola Sharma, Pradeep Vaiddya and Altaf Shaikh.



Left parties hold protest rally
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, August 23
The district units of the CPI and CPM held a protest rally outside the Mini-Secretariat today. They were demanding an effective Lokpal Bill to deal with corruption, electoral reforms and an end to the economic policies in favour of corporate sector.

Activists said the government was bent on suppressing the fundamental rights of the people. They also slammed the economic policies of the government that were in favour of the corporate sector.



2 booked for duping youth of Rs 9 lakh
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, August 23
The Ludhiana (rural) police has booked two persons for allegedly duping a youth of Rs 9 lakh on the pretext of sending him abroad.

Though the accused managed to send Gurdeep to Italy, they failed to provide him a job as promised by them.

The accused have been identified as Ujagar Singh of Kurar Chapa village near Barnala and Jagraj Singh of Cheeniwal Kalan village. As per information, the victim, Gurdeep Singh, had approached the police and brought the matter to his notice following which an inquiry was marked into the matter. After verifying facts, the police registered a case against the accused.



Badminton academy honours shuttlers
Anil Datt

Ludhiana, August 23
Trainees of the Ludhiana Badminton Academy (LBA), who were among the record holders in the Open Ludhiana District Badminton Championship organised recently, were honoured yesterday.

These shuttlers were felicitated during a function organised at Shastri Hall near Guru Nanak Sports Complex. The trainees, their parents and office-bearers of the academy attended the function.

Industrialist Tanav Chopra, who had sponsored the event, distributed bicycles, T-shirts and cash prizes among the players. Lakwinder Singh Pannu, coach of the Ludhiana Badminton Association, who also competed in the district tournament and wrapped up two titles (men’s singles and doubles) was also rewarded.

Association’s president Mohinder Chopra congratulated the trainees and their coach for bringing fame to the academy.

Shuttlers like Prianshu Madan, Jasleen, Prerna Dawar, Mitaksh Gandhi, Rachit Gupta, Neha, Puneet Kaur, Surya Goel, Steffi Kala, Raj Kumar, Rajesh Goel and Sandeep Gupta were felicitated for their outstanding performance in the tournament.



Easy win for MP Pandove XI
Anil Datt

Ludhiana, August 23
Thanks to the superb batting display by Sarul Kanwar and Preet Kamal, MP Pandove XI scripted an easy 8-wicket victory against Chaman Lal Malhotra XI on the fourth and final day of the inaugural match in the PCA Players’ Emerging Cricket Tournament being organised by the Ludhiana District Cricket Association under the patronage of the Punjab Cricket Association at the PAU ground here today.

Yesterday’s not-out batsmen Sarul Kanwar and Preet Kamal managed to hold their domain intact and denied Chaman Lal Malhotra XI’s bowlers any success.

Batting last evening on 32 and 22 runs, repectively, Sarul and Preet Kamal remained unconquered on 91 and 17, respectively.

With this victory, MP Pandove XI secured four points. The second match will be played between Chaman Lal Malhotra XI and IS Bindra XI here from August 25 to 28 while MP Pandove will take on Navjot Singh Sidhu XI at Sector 26 cricket ground, Chandigarh, on the same dates.

Brief scores:

Chaman Lal Malhorta XI (Ist innings) 217 all out (Shiv Lal 34, Mayank Sidana 12, Anil Sihag 76, Rahul Singla 26, Sidharth Kaul 12, Manpreet Singh Goni 21 n.o, Mohit Mohindra 14; Love Abhlish 2 for 23, Maninder Singh 3 for 33, Yogesh Kumar 1 for 53, Kamal Passi 1 for 5, Shard Loomba 1 for 0 and Rajesh Sharma 2 for 51).

MP Pandove XI (Ist innings)- 202 all out (Sarul Sawar 12, Amitoj Singh 58, Preet Kamal 35, Sharad Loomba 46, Kamal Passi 13; Manpreet Singh Goni 4 for 25, Sidarath Kaul 1 for 23, Mohit Mohindra 1 for 42 and Rahul Singla 3 for 56).

Chaman Lal Malhotra XI (IInd innings) 97 all out in 42.3 overs (Jeewanjot Singh 10, Mayanak Sidana 10, Anil Sihag 22 and Karan Goel 32; Rajesh Sharma 5 for 39, Yogesh Kumar 4 for 25 and Maninder Singh 1 for 7).

MP Pandove XI (2nd innings) -- 113 for 2 (Sarul Kawar 32 n.o. and Preet Kamal 22 n.o; Manpreet Singh Goni 2 for 8).



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