L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Callousness at Civil hospital to fore
Head-injuries patient denied bed
Anupam Bhagria
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 13
A man with head injuries who was brought to the city’s Civil Hospital was reportedly denied a bed and told to wait “anywhere he felt like.”

Harpreet Singh, press secretary of the Berozgar Lineman Union (Punjab), claimed: “On Monday a member of our union, Kulbeer Kumar, was severely injured on the head during the cane charge at the ‘Chhapar Mela’. We took him to the community health centre in Pakhowal from where he was referred to the Civil Hospital, Ludhiana. However, we were told at the reception there was no vacant bed at the hospital so the patient could stay anywhere he felt like”.

Jaswinder Singh, another union member, said: "Throughout the night we stayed with him under open sky in hot and humid weather but Kulbeer was not provided a bed. It is very inhumane of the concerned staff who even said that the patient can go anywhere on the roads. Today we met civil surgeon Dr Daleep Kumar and brought the matter to his notice. After his intervention we succeeded in getting a hospital bed for Kulbeer”.

Showing the patient’s blood stained clothes, Gurpreet Singh, a union member, said: "Look at his head injuries and his clothes, but the hospital staff wasn’t bothered at all. Although we managed to get a bed for Kulbeer at around noon doctors didn’t begin treatment till late in the afternoon”.

When contacted Dr Karamvir Goel, officiating senior medical officer, Ludhiana, stated: "It was around 6 pm when I got to know from the staff concerned that the patient was admitted to the Civil Hospital in ward number 7 and was allotted bed number 22. He later left the ward on his own but was however provided with the bed at night”.


Child suffering from burns put on floor
Anupam Bhagria
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 13
Though patients with burn injuries are highly susceptible to infection, a visit to the city’s Civil Hospital gives an impression the staff is least bothered about taking the necessary precautions. A recent case in point is that of a five-year girl, Sanya, who had suffered burns, lying on the floor covered in bandages near the same hospital ward where the body of another burns patient still lay.

Her father, Nizaam, told The Tribune: "My daughter got burnt about 18 days ago after she fell into a large container filled with hot oil at home, and since then we’ve been here at the hospital. She was allotted a bed in the burns ward but today we were told to lay her down on the floor of the waiting hall as another female patient had succumbed to her burn injuries about half an hour ago. The staff asked us to shift her from the ward after saying she might feel terrified at seeing a corpse. She is now showing signs of recovery”.

Utter confusion prevailed at the burns ward with staff nurses on duty arguing themselves about which doctor had to be informed about the dead patient.
”Look dead body has been lying for the last 20 minutes and we have no Class IV employee with us to inform the concerned doctor. The body can be sent to mortuary only after the permission of doctor”, said a hospital employee.

When asked what was being done to address the manpower crunch at the hospital, Dr Karamvir Goel, officiating senior medical officer, Ludhiana, stated: "We’ve sent a request for providing more staff to the authorities concerned”.



40 unemployed linemen arrested
Our Correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh, September 13
At least 40 activists of the Unemployed Linemen Union were arrested on Monday evening for allegedly interfering in the official duties of cops, assaulting them and disrupting the movement of vehicles and hurling abuses at government officials on Monday. About six cops, including DSP Raekot Pirthipal Singh and DSP Ranbir Singh, were reportedly injured in the assault by the suspects booked under Sections 353, 283, 332, 148 and 149 of the IPC.

According to an FIR registered at the Jodhan police station on the statement of Jangjit Singh, SHO, the suspects, led by Peer Mall Singh, state president of the outfit fighting for rights of unemployed linemen, had allegedly tried to disrupt the SAD conference organised under the supervision of Manpreet Singh Ayali, Chairman Zila Parishad at Chhapar Mela on Monday. It was after Badal started addressing the rally that a group of activists, raising slogans against the government, tried to enter the tent occupied by leaders and activists of the party in regime. Some of them were armed with crude weapons, including canes and rods.

When cops on duty tried to stop the protesters from entering the tent, they (protesters) allegedly assaulted them and interfered in their official duty. Jangjeet Singh, SHO, Jodhan, who was deployed at the mela site at the time of the incident, alleged that the protesters had attacked the cops without any provocation and about six of them were nabbed on the spot.

On the basis of information received from the nabbed suspects, their other accomplices, including president of the outfit, were arrested from various places.

The suspects were sent to judicial custody after being presented at a court in Ludhiana in the afternoon. Meanwhile, the union activists, led by Peer Mall Singh and Jagdeep Singh, have accused the police of trying to appease the government by registering “false” case against them instead of realising their fault to allegedly cane charge activists staging a peaceful protest march.

About 20 activists of the union were injured in the lathicharge by the police during the SAD conference at Chhapar Mela yesterday. The injured were admitted to various hospitals of the area.



Wooden bridge on Buddda Nullah poses threat
Charanjit Singh Teja

Ludhiana, September 13
A bridge, which is otherwise used as a mode to join two areas, seems to have lost its meaning when it comes to New Chander Nagar near Haibowal. Here, a bridge on Budda Nullah, which is under construction in the area for the past 10 months, remains incomplete for reasons best known to the Municipal Corporation (MC), which boasts of being the richest in the state.

Due to this, area residents are forced to use another "temporary" wooden bridge, which is in a poor condition, and can collapse anytime.

Every time someone crosses this bridge, he puts his life in danger, which is dependent on a few wooden logs.

Pedestrians have to pass the dilapidated bridge to approach DMC Hospital Chowk. The foundation stone for constructing a new bridge was laid by Mayor Hakam Singh Giaspura, former Chief Parliamentary Secretary Harish Rai Dhanda, and Councillor Roopamdeep Kaur Malhi on October 24 last year. Even the foundation stone fell into the nullah while the construction of the new bridge was going on.

Now that only four months are left for the deadline of the completion of a new bridge, the construction activity has stopped, which could be known from the fact that only one pillar has been constructed on one side of the nullah.

The construction of the new bridge started after the removal of dilapidated wooden bridge nine months back. The dilapidated bridge on the nullah was placed by Municipal Corporation near the construction site. Residents of New Chander Nagar used the bridge to take auto rickshaws from DMC Hospital Chowk. Now pedestrians have started using unfixed dilapidated bridge again, which may cause an accident any time.

Santosh Jaiswal, a resident of New Chander Nagar, rued, " The construction work has been stopped for the past two months. People are using this bridge continuously. Some minor incidents took place, but the corporation is waiting for a major accident before taking any action."

"It turns more dangerous at night due to non-functional streetlights. The MC should start the construction work of bridge for the convenience of people at the earliest", said Sumit, resident of New Chander Nagar 

Rain hit work on new bridge

Contractor Hero Singh said, "The Municipal Commissioner ordered to stop the construction work due to the rainy session. We will complete the work in time".

MC officiating commissioner Malwinder Singh Jaggi confirmed that the contractor was asked to stop the work on this bridge, as the water level in Budda Nullah had increased. "But the work would would restart in next 15 days," said Jaggi.



CCTVs at AC Market removed, dumped in store
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 13
About 45 closed circuit television cameras installed inside the AC Market at Calibre Plaza for surveillance have been discarded and are gathering dust inside a store after shopkeepers did not make any move to reclaim the cameras from the municipal corporation. On the other hand, civic officials have maintained the cameras were stored away since no applications for claiming them were filed.

The CCTV cameras were put up for tightening security inside the market, one of the city’s most crowded, in association with the local police, which too had access to them. The cameras were installed on every floor of the building besides the entrance and exit points to monitor all activities from the control room set up on the top floor.

"However, officials also sealed the market’s control room cum office and all the CCTV cameras were locked in a store in the basement, which was also sealed. The cameras were installed for ensuring safety of shopkeepers and visitors after spending lakhs of rupees, and they detected many thefts in shops. The police also had access to the cameras and, when they were removed, we felt bad but none of us ever bothered to get them back. The cameras must have been damaged by now", said Maan Singh, president of the AC Market Shopkeepers' Association.

Kamaljit Kaur, who as assistant town planner in the MC’s Zone A at the time the CCTV camera were installed in the market, said: “Certain shops in the market were sealed and unauthorized structures removed to comply with the high court's orders on enforcing building bylaws. We had sealed their office and a few shops as they were constructed in an utter violation of building bylaws. We are not aware whether they had kept the cameras in the sealed shop or not. If the shopkeepers move an application, seeking custody of those cameras, we will definitely hand over their belongings, but they have to approach us".



City may get daily train to Chandigarh
Amritsar-Chandigarh Duronto might run as intercity express
Kuldip Bhatia

Ludhiana, September 13
If the proposal mooted by the divisional headquarters of the northern railway at Ferozepur finds favour with the zonal authorities, the city might soon have a daily train to Chandigarh. In view of the poor response of public on the Amritsar-Chandigarh section, the railways is toying with the idea of converting the recently launched Duronto express into an intercity express with stoppages at several stations on the route, including Ludhiana.

Introduced with much fanfare on August 24, the 12241/12242 Amritsar-Chandigarh Duronto Express has failed to meet the expectations of the railways with an average daily occupancy ranging between 10 per cent and 25 per cent. The five-day a week train with two air-conditioned and 12 non-airconditioned coaches, has a seating capacity of 1,428 but the number of travellers is far to less.

The Duronto runs without any stoppage from the originating point to the destination except for a brief halt at Sirhind for change of power.

According to highly placed sources, the top brass at the divisional level of the northern railway believes that in its present avatar, the failure of the Duronto is certain. “But if the same train runs as an intercity express with commercial halts at Beas, Jalandhar, Phagwara, Ludhiana and Mohali, it can have the desired volume of passenger traffic,” a senior railway official remarked.

City residents have been demanding a stoppage of Duronto at Ludhiana to enable them to travel to Mohali and Chandigarh. “The timing of the train is convenient for up and down travel to Chandigarh, and that too in an air-conditioned comfort with breakfast or dinner also thrown in,” said Mohinder Aggarwal, a functionary of the Punjab Pradesh Beopar Mandal.

Railway officials said till the train carried the tag of Duronto, having commercial halts at other stations on the section was not possible. “Converting Duronto into an intercity express is a policy decision and the divisional headquarters can recommend it to the zonal headquarters in New Delhi,” they said.



Dengue, malaria cases on rise
Jaswant Shetra

Jagraon, September 13
There has been a considerable rise in the cases of dengue and malaria in Jagraon and surrounding areas for the last one month. A large number of patients with symptoms of malaria and dengue are visiting the Civil Hospital, private hospitals and clinics for treatment.

One of the main reasons behind the rise in cases of malaria is the lack of cleanliness in the town. Huge heaps of garbage and accumulated rainwater are acting as breeding ground for mosquitoes.

In spite of this, the local administration seems to be apathetic towards the problem and is doing nothing to solving the situation. Residents alleged that the administration, including Municipal Council and health department officials, have done nothing to prevent the spread of such diseases. This is despite the fact that more than five persons in the town lost their lives to malaria and dengue last year.

During a visit to various hospitals of the town, it was found that five to 10 patients suffering from malaria were undergoing treatment in these hospitals. Besides, a large number of people were suffering from high fever and they were yet to get the tests done.

According to the residents, the MC has done no fogging due to which mosquitoes are increasing. People fear that if the attitude of the administration remains the same, the situation can turn more dangerous.

“I fail to understand why the MC and health department officials do not pay heed towards such a serious problem,” said Hari Om Singla, a senior citizen.

When contacted, senior medical officer (SMO), Civil Hospital, Jagraon, Dr Rupinder Kaur Kakkar, said, “There is no doubt that there is an increase in the cases of malaria and dengue in the last few days. The health department officials have already visited different areas and distributed literature among residents to create awareness about how to prevent the spread of such diseases. Besides, we have got fogging done in the town and nearby areas to ensure that the disease do not spread further.”



Road markings in narrow streets!
Drawn in posh areas to woo residents in name of beautification
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 13
Officials of the municipal corporation and the traffic police need to take lessons in traffic signs and road markings afresh, considering faulty markings on city streets, that have left traffic experts scoffing.

Councillors from posh localities have got highway road markings drawn in their respective wards to woo residents in the name of beautification. But they do not know that they have got wrong lines marked on the streets and roads.

Theses road marking have been drawn in the narrow streets of Model Gram, Kitchlu Nagar and Tagore Nagar.

Taking a serious view of violations, a traffic expert has demanded the removal of these road markings.

“These markings are a serious violation of traffic rules. We have been objecting to highway road markings in narrow streets. If these have been drawn for the purpose of beautification, it is wrong,” said traffic expert Kamaljit Soi.

He added that dotted lines drawn in the middle of roads suggested overtaking. “We cannot overtake in a street. These markings are meant to be drawn on highways and main roads, but are nowhere to be seen on those,” he claimed.

“Public money has been wasted so that these roads look impressive while those in other areas are in a pathetic condition. Preference has been given to posh localities while residents of other wards suffer due to inadequate infrastructure,” rued Rajiv Kumar of Chander Nagar.

MS Jaggi, officiating MC Commissioner, said he would comment only after checking facts and visiting the areas where road markings had been drawn for beautification.



Show-cause notices to ATP, BDPO
Failed to provide information under Right to Information Act
Puneet Pal Singh Gill
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 13
Chief Information Commissioner (CIC) Ramesh Inder Singh has issued show-cause notices to the Assistant Town Planner (ATP) of Zone A and the BDPO of Machhiwara for not providing information under the Right to Information (RTI) Act in two separate cases.

The notices were issued during the hearing held through video conferencing here today. A total of 19 cases related to various government departments were heard today.

Dilbagh Singh, a resident of Machhiwara, said he had submitted an application under the RTI Act for seeking information related to different development projects initiated in Machhiwara. “But even after 18 months, the BDPO failed to provide the information,” said Dilbagh Singh.

During the hearing, the BDPO of Machhiwara and other officials of the department concerned were not present. Taking note of it, the CIC said a show-cause notice should be issued to the BDPO as to why penalty should not be imposed on him and why compensation should not be awarded to complainant Dilbagh Singh. The next date of hearing has been fixed for November 21.

In another case, Balbir Aggarwal, a resident of Millar Ganj, had sought information regarding the construction of Bhagat Ford Motors/AB Motors, Sherpur Chowk. He had also sought details of the map, on site inspections, recommendation and permission for construction, present construction and also details of any encroachment or any compounding fee received by MC to regularise the construction.

However, Assistant Town Planner (ATP) of Zone A Harpreet Singh Ghai failed to appear before the CIC. The ATP of Zone D, Kamaljit Kaur, who was present during the hearing, stated that the matter was related to Zone A, and Ghai was the official concerned, who should have appeared before the court.

On this, the CIC issued a show-cause notice to the ATP and ordered that he should explain why he failed to provide the information. He also ordered that the complainant should be provided with information before the next date of hearing, which is September 19.

Davinder Singh, Deputy Director Local Bodies was the nodal officer present during the video conferencing.



ATP accused of providing incomplete information
Puneet Pal Singh Gill
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 13
An RTI activist has charged an Assistant Town Planner (ATP) with providing him incomplete information under the Right to Information (RTI) Act.

The information was related to pending challans of the building branch of Zone C area of the city.

Rohit Sabharwal, president of the Council of RTI Activists, alleged that he had sought information related to pending challans in Zone C. “ATP Nirmal Preet Singh did not provide me the correct information. There are several discrepancies in the list provided to me and after I brought the details of some left out buildings to the notice of Nirmal Preet Singh, he admitted over the phone that some buildings have been left out,” alleged Sabharwal.

He said there was a building opposite the ITI on Gill Road, which was sealed and challaned, “But the name of this building is missing from the list provided to me by the ATP of Zone C. Now, I will ask for inspection of record of Zone C under Section 2 (J) of RTI Act because I feel that there could be other discrepancies in the list as well,” claimed Sabharwal.

ATP Nirmal Preet Singh, however, said that after Sabharwal brought the issue to his notice, he had asked the building inspectors of his zone to verify the facts and make sure that an authentic list was provided to him.

“We have not left out any building intentionally. We are rechecking our record and would provide a fresh list to Sabharwal. The updated list could not be handed over to Sabharwal as there was some problem with our printer,” the ATP claimed.

As per the list provided to Rohit Sabharwal under the RTI Act, 200 persons in Zone C have an amount of Rs 18,34,986 as pending challans. ATP Nirmal Preet Singh said that the process of collecting the due amount has stared.



Illegal vehicles, rehris removed
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 13
The tehbazaari wing of the Ludhiana Municipal Corporation confiscated vehicles and rehris from the Bhadaur House area this afternoon.

The wrongly parked vehicles lead to snarl-ups on the road passing under the incomplete Lakkar Bridge flyover. A total of five bikes and three rehris were seized during the drive.

Accompanied by police and MC officials, a team led by Zone A tehbazaari superintendent Ranjeev Kumar removed bikes, rehris, tables, chairs and other such material, which was lying on the road and was blocking easy flow of traffic.

Ranjeev Kumar said owners of the bikes were fined Rs 500 each, while one bike was still with the MC. “Even the rehris, tables and chairs are still in our possession as no person came to claim them,” said Ranjeev Kumar.

NS Nanda, president of the Bhadaur House Market Association, has welcomed the MC drive. “The area is already facing traffic congestion and MC should keep a tab on this menace,” said Nanda.

MC officiating commissioner Malwinder Singh Jaggi said that no person would be allowed to park their vehicles or keep their material on the road.

“In areas such as Bhadaur House, Calibre Plaza, Feroze Gandhi Market and others, there already is provision of parking and if people still park their vehicles in area other than parking, we would confiscate the vehicles and fine the owners. This drive would continue in other parts of the city as well and if any person is having any such complaint, they can come and inform me about this menace,” claimed Jaggi.

On September 8, The Tribune had reported that the city’s Bhadaur House area was encroached upon by rehris and haphazardly parked vehicles. People park their vehicles along the road, despite the fact that MC multi-level parking and another parking of Calibre Plaza is situated nearby.

If this was not enough, some people are also using the incomplete Lakkar Bridge for parking their vehicles, including trucks, which sometimes makes it difficult for the vehicles of the project contractor to move on the bridge. 



Unhygienic Food At Mela 
Authorities swing into action
Mahesh Sharma

Mandi Ahmedgarh, September 13
Taking cognisance of a report published in these columns on preparing and serving eatables in unhygienic conditions at Mela Chhappar, the administration has initiated steps to ensure that only germ-free food items were sold during the fair.

Besides directing vendors to adopt measures to save eatables from dust and flies, officials banned the use of certain pigments and flavours, which are harmful for life.

A team of officials led by district food safety officer Harpreet Kaur undertook a surprise inspection of vends and stalls preparing and selling eatables, including sweets, snacks, juice and tea.

While a majority of the vendors were found ignoring directions of the department regarding maintenance of cleanliness and hygienic condition in their kitchens and temporary restaurants, others were found consuming non-permissible colours and flavours in preparation of eatables including pakoras, jalebi and juices.

As a majority of the vendors are ‘nomadic’ the department preferred not to initiate legal action against them. However, they were made to throw away stale and unhygienic eatables.

Acknowledging the negligence on part of vendors at the mela, Harpreet Kaur said a team of officials had already been deputed to check sale of unhygienic food at the mela.



HT wires or death trap
Kuldip Bhatia

Ludhiana, September 13
Even after mishaps at regular intervals and unsuspecting persons falling victims to the virtual death traps on the busy road in Bhai Himmat Singh Nagar in Dugri here, the Punjab State Power Corporation Limited (PSPCL) has not come out of its deep slumber to mend the loose hanging high-tension (HT) lines in the middle of the road for past over six years.

The danger that the 66 KV HT tower lines pose to trucks, pick-up vans and other goods carriers, especially those carrying containers, which are at times as high as 12 to 15 feet and pass at a sniffing distance from the live power cables, came to fore on Monday when a driver, Rahat Ali, received an electric shock while loading goods and was admitted to CMC Hospital in a serious condition.

Charging the power corporation, the industries department and the municipal corporation with apathy and indifference, the Knitwear Club today said the departments concerned were passing the buck for the past more than five years without anybody showing even a scant concern to public safety.

Addressing a news conference here today, Knitwear Club president Vinod Thapar said an export-oriented hosiery unit - Jawandsons - was located in this area and trucks carrying finished goods or raw material in huge containers passed through the road frequently. With the HT lines hanging loosely at a height of just about 14 feet from the road, the persons on board goods carriers and other vehicles were exposed to grave threat of electrocution.

He said the issue of low hanging HT lines had persistently been taken up with the authorities at the level of the then chairman of PSEB, YS Ratra, the Principal Secretary to the Punjab Government, Department of Industries, the district administration, the then Chief Parliamentary Secretary, Surinder Dawar, and Punjab Minister for Jails, Tourism and Cultural Affairs Hira Singh Gabria without any positive response till now.

“That the power corporation had failed to take any action even after three successive Deputy Commissioners - Ashok Gupta, Vikas Garg and Rahul Tiwari - had written demi-official letters for elevating the HT lines by erection of another tower to reduce the distance between the spans and increase ground clearance level, shows the scant concern of the department for city residents," Thapar said.

In an ultimatum of sorts, the Knitwear Club called for immediate remedial steps to raise the level of HT lines so as to ensure safety of road users and area residents failing which it would resort to agitation and might seek legal recourse.



Pen-down strike enters second day
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 13
The pen-down strike by the Medical Laboratory Technicians’ Association today entered the second day and none worked in the laboratories and blood banks of government hospitals and dispensaries.

Laboratory technicians also held a protest dharna outside the Civil Surgeon office. Jagdish Lal, one of the office-bearers of the association, said, “The state health department has not been fulfilling long-pending demands, so we have decided to go on the pen-down strike.”

Meanwhile, employees working on contract in the tuberculosis department also remained on the pen-down strike today. Gurjeet Singh, state president of RNTCP and NLEP Union, said, “We will hold the state-level dharna at Chandigarh.” 



Gate rally to voice demands
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 13
Non-teaching employees of Punjab Agricultural University (PAU) will hold a gate rally between 9.30 am to 11.30 am tomorrow to protest against the state government’s callous attitude in releasing the pending 40 per cent arrears to PAU employees.

Harbans Singh Mundi, president PAU Non-Teaching Employees’ Union, said the union had given an ultimatum to the university authorities till September 13.

“We had a meeting with the VC and other functionaries, but we have been given assurances, not much than that,” said Mundi. He further added that in these two hours, no body from outside will be allowed to enter the varsity and all employees will gather at the main gate. 



Gurmit is UCPMA president
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 13
Gurmit Singh Kular of Kular International has been unanimously elected as the president of the United Cycle and Parts Manufacturers' Association (UCPMA) here today.

Other two contestants in fray, Charanjit Vishwakarma and Roopak Sood, withdrew their names in Kular’s support. The UCPMA election has been scheduled for September 15.

On the other hand, for other seven key posts in the association, the withdrawal of the names had to be done by 4 pm today and UCPMA members expected that the final list of candidates would be put up by 5 pm at the office. While sources maintain since many members were trying to reach a unanimous decision, the list of final contestants contesting election was “intentionally” not put up on the board.

“They will be having a late evening meeting in which members will be asked to withdraw their names in others’ support. Till now, the contestants from both major groups are adamant to contest the election. The outcome of the meeting will come late evening. But we are pretty sure that the decision would be unanimous, the way the events are taking place,” said an old member of UCPMA.

Members also said they were shocked to see how things were taking shape in the current UCPMA election. “Top-level politics is being going on where big corporate are using their influence. I feel that election affair should be simple and members must not indulge in petty politics,” said a member.



Women Entrepreneurs-II
Winner in every sphere — Touch wood
Minna Zutshi
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, September 13
You cannot be a super woman always. And there’s no point in trying to be one. That’s the basic premise on which city-based businesswoman Harpreet Brar works.

She runs a furniture manufacturing unit in the city, apart from ‘Fischers’ store where customized furniture is sold. She has often been told that hers is a typically male-dominated business. She does not read much into such generalizations and neither does her husband who is her ‘partner’ in the business.

"We supply to companies like Fab India. Our USP is quality coupled with excellence. We use chemically-treated seasoned wood in our solid wood furniture. At our store we also do the interiors," she says, sounding a consummate businesswoman.

The nitty-gritty of the business has to be worked out every day. Decisions have to be taken and she has to keep a close watch on the work force at her factory. "I have to maintain a tough exterior. Any sign of weakness and the workers can take you for a ride," she tells us.

She feels that she has changed as a person ever since she joined this venture that was started by her husband. "I think your profession impinges on your personal life. I have become tougher and you don’t get to see my soft side when I’m at work," she adds.

It’s only when she’s with her two daughters that her soft side comes back to her. "I do have my pangs of guilt when I cannot devote much time to my daughters. Sometimes, when they need me I’m not there. I’m gradually learning to accept this feeling of guilt," she says.

Back to her business talk, she says the city is not very industry friendly. "We hardly get any help from the government. We have to manage the things on our own," she says.

Yet, not for a moment since 2001, when she joined the business, has she regretted her decision to be what she’s today. 

Success mantra
Harpreet BrarA mix of luck and hard work.

Work philosophy
I breathe work, I live work.

Chill-out zone
Socializing and partying make me happy.

Fitness point
Yoga keeps me active. A long walk once a week is a must.

Balancing act
It’s a constant juggle between home and business.

Soul concern
My kids give me joy. 



Powercom JE ends life
SDO, XEN, contractor booked for abetting suicide
Jaswant Shetra

Jagraon, September 13
A junior engineer (JE) deployed with the Punjab State Power Corporation Limited (Powercom) reportedly committed suicide by consuming some poisonous substance at his residence last evening.

The victim has been identified as Jeet Ram Bhatia. He was residing in the Powercom employees’ colony on the Sidhwan Bet Road in Jagraon with his family.

The family members of the victim alleged that some senior officials were harassing Jeet Ram and he was upset for the past some days.

In his complaint to police, the victim’s son, Pardeep Singh, said alleged that on Monday afternoon, his father went to his room saying that he was tired and wanted to take some rest. He then locked the door of his room from inside and consumed some poisonous substance.

The family members of the victim came to know about the incident when one of them knocked at the door of the victim’s room but when he did not respond, the family members broke the door and found Jeet Ram laying unconscious. The family members with the help of some other Powercom employees immediately rushed him to a local private hospital from where he was referred to Medicity Hospital in Ludhiana where he died late in the evening.

When contacted, investigating officer SI Sawarn Singh said: “The police has registered a case against executive engineer (XEN) Gurpreet Mahinder Singh Sidhu, SDO Jagdeep Singh and the contractor Nirvair Singh on the basis of the complaint of the victim’s son, Pardeep Singh.”

The police has also recovered a suicide note from the pocket of the victim in which he has held the XEN, the SDO and the contractor responsible for his death, he added.

No arrest has been made so far. The police said raids were on to nab the accused.

Meanwhile, members of the Punjab State Power Corporation Limited Employees Union held a protest at the local Civil Hospital along with the body of the victim demanding immediate arrest of the accused. 



Ex-SHO, 4 others get 3-yr term
Rajneesh Lakhanpal
Our Legal Correspondent

Ludhiana, September 13
Judicial Magistrate Monica Sharma has convicted former SHO Gurchetan Singh of Partapura, Phillaur, and four others on the charges of trespassing into the property of a person, wrongfully confining him with common object for the purpose of inflicting injuries.

All accused have been ordered to undergo imprisonment for three years each. They have been also ordered to pay a fine of Rs 3,000 each.

Those other convicted includes Pritam Singh, wife Kashmir Kaur, sons Lal Singh and Binder Singh, all residents of Ajit Nagar, Ludhiana.

However, the court acquitted one accused, Ajit Singh of Police Lines, Ludhiana, finding no evidence against him for participating in the commission of offence.

A case under Sections 323, 342, 452, 148 and 149 of the IPC was registered against the accused following directions of the Punjab and Haryana High Court at Division No. 2 police station on the complaint of Dilbagh Singh Saini on February 12, 1997.

The complainant had stated that his wife Baljit Karu and two sons owned a property at Ajit Nagar, Suffian Road, Ludhiana. The property was unfit and unsafe for human habitation. As such they had filed a case against tenant, Pritam Singh seeking injunction for making structural changes on the premises from the court.

Convinced with their submissions, the court of civil judge Neelam Salaria had granted stay order in their favour. It was alleged that the major portion of the roof had already fallen down. It was further alleged that on April 11, 1996, the tenant with the help of policemen tried to reconstruct the fallen portion. They were shown the court order but they did not stop.

When they protested, tenant along with Sub-Inspector Gurchetan Singh posted at Division No. 2 entered their house forcibly and beat him.

However, the accused pleaded innocence. But after appreciating the evidence on record, the court found them guilty and sentenced accordingly.



Man gets life term for killing son
Rajneesh Lakhanpal

Ludhiana, September 13
The court of additional sessions judge Mandeep Pannu has convicted Dalip Singh of Sarabarpur village, Machhiwara, on the charges of killing his son, Harinder Singh by mixing poisonous substance in the liquor.

The judge ordered him to undergo a rigorous life imprisonment. He was also ordered to pay a fine of Rs 10,000.

A case under Section 302 of the IPC was registered against the accused following the statement of Jaspreet Kaur, wife of the deceased on July 11, 2008 at the Samrala police station.

The complainant in her complaint stated that her father-in-law was having bad character. Her husband used to desist him from indulging into bad things, due to which he used to remain annoyed with him. All this led to dispute between them. One day, he took her husband, along with him saying they would sit and settle all disputes forever. There he administered poisonous substance in the liquor, which was consumed by her husband, which caused his death.



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