L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Six workers injured in furnace blast
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Debris at the blast venue.
Debris at the blast venue. Tribune photos

Ludhiana, October 9
Six workers were injured, one of them seriously, following a blast at a factory unit in Phase VI, Focal Point area, here this afternoon.
The furnace was involved in melting scrap iron to make iron cones.

The injured have been identified as Kulvir Singh (25), a native of Himachal Pradesh, Nainjeet (38), Sanjay Paswan (40), Surinder Kumar (42), Chander Dev and Rajnandan.

The condition of Raj Nandan was stated to be serious and he was referred to Christian Medical College (CMC) and Hospital for treatment.

The workers were standing near the furnace when the incident took pace.

While five workers managed to escape, Rajnandan, who was sitting on a crane, got stuck and hot material fell on him.

According to SHO Focal Point, two workers were discharged from the hospital following first aid, while four workers were still undergoing treatment.

"According to available information, all workers are out of danger. It was a small blast," said SHO.

He said the police was investigating the matter and no case was registered.

The blast spread panic in the area and workers were seen running helter-skelter for cover.

"Fortunately, it was a Sunday and half of the workers had not come to the factory, otherwise more workers would have been injured," said a factory worker. Deputy Commissioner (DC) Rahul Tiwari said the administration would conduct a probe into the incident.


Safai workers suspend strike
Kuldip Bhatia

Ludhiana, October 9
The six-day-old strike of safai workers in the city has been suspended after an appeal made to them by Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal.
Representatives of the Safai Karamchari Sangharsh Morcha will meet Badal in Chandigarh on October 21 regarding their demands, and thereafter take a final decision.

Activists of the morcha from the city as also from other parts of the state met Badal at the helipad in the PAU here this morning to apprise him of the situation arising from the privatisation of the work of garbage collection from the doorstep of the residents, which was posing a big threat to the security of service to the sanitation staff.

According to a spokesperson of the morcha Lakshman Dravid, the Chief Minister invited the representatives of safai workers to Chandigarh for a meeting on October 29 with a rider that they call off their agitation with immediate effect, and join their duty so as to clear the heaps of garbage from all major places that had piled up during the strike.

"In the larger public interest and the festival season, we made an offer to suspend the stir while also insisting that the matter be sorted out before the festival of Diwali, to which Badal agreed and the meeting was fixed for October 21," Dravid told The Tribune.

After a prolonged agitation ever since the work of the door-to-door collection for garbage was given to a private company in the city and many other major towns of the state as per a policy decision of the government in the month of August, the sanitation staff had struck work on October 4. Besides scrapping the decision to award the sanitation work in private hands, the safai workers were also demanding the regularisation of ad hoc employees, fresh recruitment to tide over shortage of safai workers and another opportunity to opt for pension to those safai workers who were left out of the purview of the scheme.

The industrial hub of the region, being most populated and the largest city in the state, was the worst hit due to the strike, with generation of over 900 metric tonnes of garbage everyday. In the absence of sweeping of roads and streets, and lifting of garbage from dumping sites, the entire city had turned into a huge garbage dump with bags of domestic waste thrown all around roads and streets. The condition had become so bad in certain areas that the shopkeepers had to keep their establishments closed due to garbage strewn all over and stink during the past couple of days.



Fund crunch comes in way
Removing electric poles causing hurdles on roads
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, October 9
Paucity of funds has come in the way of saving precious human lives after the district administration authorities have expressed their helplessness in doling out Rs 8 crore to remove nearly 1,000 killer electricity poles posing a threat to residents.

These poles are not only an obstacle to commuters, but have also become a major cause of accidents.

Arranging money has become a litmus test for the administration, with Deputy Commissioner (DC) Rahul Tiwari already expressing his concern over the issue.

“Raising such a huge amount would not be an easy task. However, we have initiated the process of removing the electricity poles,” said Tiwari.

According to sources, nearly Rs 20 lakh had been given to a private contractor for removing electricity poles in the Ghumar Mandi area. The initiative bore fruit and shopkeepers of the Ghumar Mandi area thanked the administration for removing the poles. The shopkeepers said it had solved the traffic problem.

An engineer of the Punjab State Power Corporation said removing an electricity pole causes a huge loss to the department. “Not only the electricity pole but also the electricity cable goes waste after it is removed. A new set of power cables and electricity poles would be required to lay a new line on the corner of the road, which would result in jacking the cost and that is the reason why the electricity department is not interested in removing the poles as it would bring huge losses to Power Com,” said the Engineer.

Recently the DC had conducted a meeting with road safety experts in this regard.

Kamaljit Soi, a road safety expert, while quoting the ruling of the Motor Vehicle Act, said: “It is not the responsibility of the administration to remove electricity poles, rather it is the responsibility of the Power Com to get the killer poles off the road.” 

Electricity poles installed in the middle of the road at Rishi Nagar. An electricity pole installed near All Weather Swimming Pool of MC near Mall Road.
Electricity poles installed in the middle of the road at Rishi Nagar. An electricity pole installed near All Weather Swimming Pool of MC near Mall Road. Photos: Inderjeet Verma

Projects in limbo

Many ambitious projects could not see the light of the day due to fund crunch. The district administration had earlier identified 12 accident-prone points on the Ludhiana-Mullanpur stretch and it was decided that caution signals and speed breakers would be constructed on the stretch to decrease road accidents. But the project could not be initiated after the Public Works Department (PWD) estimated that it would cost Rs 12 lakh to the department.



Players upset at food quality, quantity
Medical assistance too ‘inadequate’
Anil Datt

Ludhiana, October 9
Players who have come here from different parts of the state to compete in the four-day 37th Punjab Games for Women find medical assistance inadequate and food quality substandard and less in quantity.

The organisers - Punjab Sports Department - have made arrangements of food for the participants and officials numbering around 2000 at two places, Government College for Women, and Satish Chander Dhawan Government College for Boys.

The food being served by one caterer at SC Dhawan Government College for Boys, who is from Chandigarh, is found to be wanting. The athletes who took the meals yesterday at this place complained of food as substandard, besides less in quantity.

Some players, accomapnied by their coaches, drew attention of Assistant Director, Sports, Punjab, Jasvirpal Kaur, who along with Harpal Singh Kanwar, Deputy Director Sports visited the both venues, to these problems.

Talking to The Tribune, they confirmed that the food being served at one of the venues was neither up to the mark nor according to the tenders offered by the bidders.

"We warned the caterer to abide by the agreement, otherwise he would be paid according to the food, he was providing," added Kanwar.

Meanwhile, the medical assistance facilities arranged for the players at the main venue - Guru Nanak Stadium - too were found to be lacking.

During a handball match played between Jalandhar and Moga at the Punjab Agricultural University campus, Ramandeep Kaur of Jalandhar got herself injured. Her nose and lips got bruised. In the absence of proper medical assistance available at the venue, she had to wait for the match to be over when the officials accompanying her team took her to the local Civil Hospital for treatment.

Similarly, in the kabaddi match held in the ground outside Multipupose indoor hall, four girls were injured who had to be rushed to the main stadium for first aid. 



‘Cartel operating CETP’
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, October 9
More than 550 electroplating units in Ludhiana which are discharging their water in the Common Effluent Treatment Plant (CETP) set up at phase VIII, Focal Point, have alleged that they were made to pay extra than the real cost for getting their water treated. Due to the "cartel" operating the CETP, the local electroplating industry was made to pay almost double the amount to get their discharged water treated than its actual cost.

A local industrialist, on condition of anonymity, disclosed that the Central Government had given a grant of about Rs 4 crore for setting up the unit. "In 2007, when the Ludhiana Effluent Treatment Society for Electroplating Industry took over the plant, it was assured that industrialists would be made to pay the actual cost for getting their water-discharge treated. It has been more than five years even after a tremendous increase in water-discharge, the rates for treatment have not been reduced. The actual cost of treatment will not be more than between 30-40 paise per litre but we are paying 74 paise per litre for the treatment," said the industrialist.

It may be mentioned here that about 100 units from Jalandhar were also discharging their water into the particular CETP and they were paying just 5 paise extra than their Ludhiana counterparts, which has irked local industrialists. "Initially when 50,000 litre water was discharged everyday, we were paying the same rates as of now. About 2 lakh litres of water is discharged into the CETP daily, still rates remain the same. If they will decrease the treatment rates, more and more industry will come forward to get their discharge treated," said another industrialist.

Joginder Kumar, CEO, Ludhiana Effluent Treatment Society, said they had already written to the chairman that rates needed to be reduced. The Jalandhar industry was paying the same like the Ludhiana industry, but their (Jalandhar) transportation charges were less comapred to the Ludhiana industry.



Posts of vet to be advertised soon
GADVASU VC meets minister
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, October 9
Coming to the rescue of striking GADVASU passouts and interns, Vice Chancellor Dr VK Taneja held a meeting with the Minister of Animal Husbandry RS Brahampura recently.The minister has assured the VC that the posts of Rural Veterinary Officers (RVOs) will be advertised within a month and the posts will also be regularised.

Talking to Ludhiana Tribune, Taneja said that the minister gave a patient hearing and had assured that posts of Rural Veterinary Officers (RVOs) in state will be advertised within 20 days. Besides, all the posts on contract will be regularised.

The first passout batch of GADVASU was on strike and protests recently against the state government for not advertising the posts of RVOs in the state despite the fact that posts were lying vacant. The passouts had complained that a majority of them belonged to rural areas and their parents had done a lot of hard-work to provide education to them, still their future was bleak in the absence of job-security.

Their strike was suspended yesterday after the local political leaders and the VC, GADVASU, assured the students that posts were going to be advertised soon



Parents must be alert to drastic change in their kid’s lifestyle
Our Correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh, October 9
Concerned over declining values among youths pursuing higher studies, office-bearers of various social and educational organisations have urged the parents not to turn a blind eye towards a drastic change in their children’s lifestyle.

Appeal was made during a meeting convened at Shanti Tara College at Akbarpur, Chhanna village, near here recently. Amarjit Singh Sidhu, advisor of the ST Educational Trust, presided over the meeting and Arvind Malhotra an eminent educationist from Ludhiana was the chief guest.

“It is high time that we stopped ignoring change in the lifestyle of our wards after they shift from schools to colleges. In fact the transition in environment is more crucial than any other change in one’s life,” said speakers, including Sidhu, Principal Baldev Krishan Kapila and former circle education officer Dr Maghar Singh.

Maintaining that college teachers had a significant role to play in tailoring the habits of their students, the speakers argued the target could not be achieved without the support of their parents’.



Meenakshi declared best NSS volunteer
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, October 9
On the last day of the ongoing NSS camp at Master Tara Singh Memorial College, a valedictory function was organised in which dance, giddha and a skit was performed. During the camp, various competitions like singing, slogan writing and poster making were held. Harsimran Kaur was declared the best singer, Megha, the best slogan writer where as Rakhi and Ambika stood first in the poster-making competition. Meenakshi was declared the best NSS volunteer.



Youth festival
Clay modelling marks Day 2
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, October 9
The second youth festival of Guru Angad Dev Veterinary and Animal Sciences University witnessed clay modelling and rangoli making.
Ten students participated in the competition based on themes “love and affection”, “Punjabi culture” and “musical instrument with man or woman”.

Eight students participated in rangoli making. Dr Devinder Singh Cheema, director, Student Welfare, PAU, inaugurated the session. Arun Patil from RTM Nagpur University graced the occasion.



‘Difficult to control bio-terrorism’
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, October 9
Dr L H Lobo Memorial Trust organised the Lobo Memorial Oration at Christian Medical College and Hospital. The oration was based on the theme ``Changing pattern of bacteria and virus and how to control them. ''

Addressing the gathering Dr Sharad S Chauhan, Commssioner of Police, Ludhiana, said, "It is difficult to control bio-terrorism. The reason is that once we alter the genes of any microbes, it will be very difficult to identify the kind of bacteria and virus. And secondly once it happens, it will be difficult to treat the infections being caused by these."

Chauhan who has written a book on "Biological weapons" further said, "One needs huge laboratories to make chemical weapons and nuclear weapons, but for biological weapons, one does not need a huge laboratory, only technical expertise is required."



‘Punjabi writers at the receiving end in their own state’
by NS Tasneem

Ludhiana, October 9
There was a time when the writers were venerated by all sections of society. The reason being their works were read not only by the masses but also by the classes. Great Urdu poets like Zauq, Ghalib and Momin were popular among their contemporaries but, at the same time, the last Mughal Emperor, Bahadur Shah Zafar, invited them from time to time to the Red Fort for taking part in poetical symposiums.

Even in the recent past, Dr Abdul Kalam, the then President of India, sought invitation from Khushwant Singh for exchanging his views with the popular writer. Gursharan Kaur, the wife of Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh, sometimes meets Khushwant Singh for paying her regards to him. At times when he feels that she has overstayed and her presence is no more necessary at a function, he outrightly tells her, ‘Gursharan, tun hun ja.’ (Gursharan, you may leave now.) This sort of bonhomie is a healthy sign in the literary world.

In the case of Punjabi writers, it can be said that they are feeling forlorn and dejected due to negligence. Their works are not being read by the people on a large scale. Punjabi as a language is generally spoken highly of at the literary functions but it is not being promoted enthusiastically. Paying lip service to the mother tongue has no meaning. There is no curiosity among the political class, the bureaucrats and the business community to know as to what is being written in this language. Rather, the tendency is to be apologetic, in a make-believe way, that he or she is not conversant with Gurmukhi script.

I am reminded of an anecdote that Amrita Pritam told me a long time ago in her expansive mood. She was once invited to a function where foreign dignitaries were also present. An Indian ambassador to a European country, but at that time staying in New Delhi, introduced her to some diplomats with the words- ‘She is a great poet, we the Punjabis are proud of her.’ Later Amrita Pritam asked that person, perhaps at the coffee session after dinner, if he knew the name of any book of hers. The answer was in the negative. Exasperated at this, she asked him to name any poem of hers or even quote a line of her poem. There was no response from that person. At this she realised to her dismay that only the names of the writers are bandied about without reading their books.

More or less the same situation prevails at present. Some names of the Punjabi writers are known, even in the higher circles, but their works are still beyond their reach. The politicians do come to preside over the literary functions where awards are to be given. But after the event, they become oblivious to veryone and everything. Not to talk of the litterateurs, who have won the Sahitya Akademi (National Academy of Letters) Awards, the ministers, the MLA’s and public servants do not even know the names of the recipients of the Shiromani Sahitkar Puraskar, awarded by the Languages Department of the State.

In olden times the thinkers of the first order used to occupy seats of significance at the state as well as national level. Dr S. Radhakrishnan was known as philosopher king when he was the President of India. Earlier, Mahatma Gandhi’s ‘Experiments with Truth’, Jawaharlal Nehru’s ‘Discovery of India’ and C. Rajagopal Acharya’s historical works revealed ‘the man behind the book.’ That way the citizens could assess the greatness of the occupants of high posts. Now nothing is known about the real personality behind the mask that most of the occupants of high posts wear in public. Of course they are the crowd-pullers as they have the gift of the gab but nothing else.

There is no denying the fact that the Punjabi writers are at the receiving end in their own state. The reason, of course, is obvious. A long time ago, the classical Punjabi poet Ferozedin Sharaf lamented the plight of the Punjabi language in a pithy style:

‘Sharaf’ puchhi na jinhaan ne baat meri Main haan maan-boli ohnan Punjabian di

(‘Sharaf’ I am the mother tongue of the Punjabis who have neglected me so callously). 



Ludhiana Calling
It's poll time, politicians all ears for problems of common man

When political leaders seek refuge with their religious gurus, or for that matter start reaching out to common people, including the agitating groups, it can be safely assumed that the elections are close at hands. Even as the state is yet to get into the election mode for the assembly polls due in February next year, the politicians have started bowing their heads at the doorsteps of religious and spiritual gurus. PPCC chief Captain Amarinder Singh sought blessings of Bhagat Hans Raj of Sri Ram Sharnam in the city on Tuesday, Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal was no too far behind and followed him to the same spot a day later. While the state Congress chief interacted with the youth and students under the banner of the National Students Union of India during his visit to the city, Badal delivered a sermon against corruption and illiteracy to the youth at a function organised by the Youth Federation Front here on Sunday. It would be great if these political leaders could be accessible to the people all through their stints in the government or in the opposition, and not only when they desperately need votes of the very often "neglected" common man.

Karva Chauth preparations!

The festive spirit has gripped the city residents. After the celebrations of Navratras and Dasehra, it is now Karva Chauth - the festival eagerly awaited by women. The leading markets have been witnessing huge rush as married women and girls are making beeline at the shops to get the "best" on Karva Chauth. Women are seen carrying their outfits to be worn on the special day to match the accessories. The mehandi artists are booking orders to avoid the last minute rush. They have already displayed the rate list of henna to be applied on hands. A newly married woman said, "This is my first Karva Chauth. I come from Himachal where the festival is celebrated in a much simpler way. But I am enjoying the festive spirit amongst residents here. My father-in-law accompanied my mother-in-law in selecting her outfit to be worn on the occasion. I wish the festivals never end!"

Readymade press note!

These days strikes and protests have become a routine in the city. Every other organisation is on strike for getting their demands implemented. The workers and employees in various departments sit on huger strikes in groups. In order to get their news published in the media, they send the press releases in routine to the press offices. As if writing news on daily basis had become "monotonous", the unions give the press-releases printed with blanks to be filled by the unions daily. Since demands remain the same, the persons' names sitting on hunger-strike has to be changed. One such press release got the demands printed with fill-ups. And the names of those sitting on hunger-strike were written by the sender. When asked about the printed press-note, the person who delivered it said, "It becomes convenient, otherwise we would have to write everything daily. Now we have to fill-in the blanks with names only".

Garbage squares!

Some guests from abroad were in the city this week. While taking them around the city on Friday morning they were taken by surprise. The squares in the city were dotted with garbage dumps. They were intrigued by the garbage apparently placed right in the middle of the squares. "We have heard about garbage scares, but we're seeing garbage squares for the first time in our life," laughed one of them. "I had doubts about it being the most polluted, but seeing all these squares adorned with garbage truly justifies this city as one of the most polluted," he said.

— Contributed by: Kuldip Bhatia, Shivani Bhakoo, Anupam Bhagria and Gurvinder Singh



Not many takers for books in city, kids hooked on to TV
Gurvinder Singh
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, October 9
Enid Blyton, Ruskin Bond, Nancy Drew, Mark Twain no more keep the young readers in the city engrossed as many of them don't feel the need to read books any more.
"Although the city has never been known for its literary inclination, but with the passing of time the pleasures of reading are dwindling further," says Analjit Grewal, a resident of Civil Lines.

There is so much information available on the internet that there is no need to read books. Children are more engrossed in watching cartoons on TV, others have playstations and Xbox's stealing away their time.

"Who has the time to do extra reading? I hardly get the time from school and tuitions. The rest of time gets spent on the internet. Being in touch with friends on Facebook is also important," says Ekta Joshi, studying in class VII.

For 11-year-old Ekjot, cartoons channels and TV shows for children are more interesting than reading story books. "When you can watch stories, why read?," she quips.

But Gurmeet Kaur, teaching in a private school says it is sad that children in the city today are reading lesser that the earlier generation . "Reading good stories,inculcates finer tastes, widens imagination that cannot be matched by watching movies or cartoons," she says.

Some feel that it's more about the reading culture rather than a necessity. "Children of my cousin in Chandigarh read story books because they see their parents reading books. As a result of this culture, there are many options to go for books in Chandigarh where books dedicated for general reading are available.

But in Ludhiana we have very limited options for books on general reading," rues Rahul Gupta, a resident of Dugri. 



LIT official ordered to provide information
Puneet Pal Singh Gill
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, October 9
After the Executive Officer (EO) of the Ludhiana Improvement Trust (LIT) failed to supply information to a city resident under the Right to Information (RTI) Act, the State Information Commission (SIC) has now given last opportunity to the EO, failing which action would be taken under Section 20 of the RTI Act.

Rohit Sabharwal, president of local NGO Council of RTI Activists, had sought details of violations of scheduled clauses of various schemes of the LIT from January 2000 till date.

"I had sought record of action taken by LIT on all violators and the application regarding this was sent to the civic body on May 16. But I failed to get this information and so I moved the State Information Commission on June 22. Till date, EO ZR Khan has failed to supply this information despite the fact that he was directed twice by the State Information Commission," said Sabharwal.

In an order passed by State Information Commissioners Kulbir Singh and Chander Parkash on September 29, it was said, "The respondent was directed to file an affidavit but he has failed to file an affidavit. Harpal Singh, a clerk, appeared on behalf of the respondent and stated that ZR Khan was the EO at the time information was sought. Presently, he is working as Executive Officer, Improvement Trust, Hoshiarpur. Last opportunity is given to ZR Khan, EO, Improvement Trust, Hoshiarpur to file an affidavit, failing which action under Section 20 of the RTI Act will be initiated," read the order.

ZR Khan is presently posted as EO at Ludhiana.

"Respondent has brought some information today in the Commission which has been handed over to the Complainant. Complainant is advised to point out the deficiencies in the information provided by the Respondent. Respondent is directed to ensure that the deficiencies in the information are made good before the next date of hearing (which is November 11)," read the SIC order.



‘Ludhiana touches my emotional chord’ 
Minna Zutshi
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, October 9
Cities often grow on you. They connect with you. At least on some instinctual level. Ludhiana city, with its unenviable distinction of being among the most polluted places of India, is very much a 'comfort zone' for actress Divya Dutta.
"The city gives me my peace of mind. It restores my sanity. Mumbai is different. It's absorbing, it's gripping. But Ludhiana touches my emotional chord," says the actress hailing from Sahnewal.

Her visits to the city are invariably a nostalgic trip for her. This time, the visit entailed a quick trip to her alma mater Sacred Heart Convent Senior Secondary School and some meetings with friends and teachers. "When you touch your roots, you get a special kind of satisfaction," she says.

Ludhiana is the city that's hard to ignore at gut level. It has a unique street-food culture that has remained unchanged over the years, Divya tells us. "People here love to eat with abandon. The roadside eating joints, selling delectable fare, remain hot favourites with the foodies."

In the past 13 years, ever since she shifted to Mumbai, the city has changed. It has grown exponentially. Swanky malls have come up. Many places are unrecognizable, she says. The veneer of conventionality is wearing off. Women are finding their place and the society is also appreciating their newfound roles. Yet, the city retains its basic character, feels the actress.

"Even though the city has gone in for infrastructural changes, it's not a city that confounds you. If left on my own, I would manage to find my way out," she says.
"The warmth of the people, their endearing tenacity to stuff you with rich Punjabi food remains just as it was decades ago. Ludhiana does not disappoint you a bit," she adds. Divya was in the city today for the promotion of MAX Extraaa Shots Challenge.



CIC summons for Allahabad Bank
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, October 9
The Central Information Commission (CIC) has summoned Allahabad Bank on October 28 on a complaint filed by a Ludhiana-based RTI activist Hitesh Nayyar.
The CIC has ordered (a copy of which is with Ludhiana Tribune) the bank to produce before the Commission all relevant papers and documents.

If information has been provided by the Public Information Officer, proof, dispatch and copy of the information must be brought to the hearing. The Commission has also directed the PIO to communicate the date and time of hearing to any other official whose assistance has been sought under Section 5141 of the RTI Act.

Hitesh had filed an application under the RTI Act, 2005, with the Public Information Officer, Allahabad Bank, Zonal Office, on March 31, 2011 to provide a branch-wise list of projects financed by their bank from year 2006 onwards till date, indicating name of the party, nature of project, location, cost, amount financed, rate of interest and prevailing prime lending rate.

“The bank surprisingly responded that it did not maintain any such record, which not only defeats the purpose of computerisation of the branches but also means that the bank doesn’t know the antecedents of its debtors and the lending money," said Hitesh.

The activist also requested the Public Information Officer to provide information about the STD calls made from the official telephones of the bank and further requested the PIO to provide a copy of the travelling expenses claimed by the bank officials. "The bank failed to provide a copy of the telephone bills, claiming that it does not maintain any such record and further provided a copy of the Travelling Bill Register," said the activist.

The applicant has appealed to the Central Information Commissioner to instruct the PIO to provide information immediately and free of cost and penalise the Public Information Officer. The activist has further requested the CIC to order compensation for not supplying information on time and breach of his right and demanded disciplinary action against the PIO and First Appellate Authority under Section 20 and 19(8(a) of the Act.



Husbands of councillors call the shots at MC meetings
Jaswant Shetra

Jagraon, October 9
Husbands of as many as five women councillors, elected from different wards, continue to attend all crucial meetings of the municipal council on behalf of their better halves.

The practice is going unchecked despite instructions issued by the government in this regard. But there seems to be no effect of such instructions on the local municipal council, where husbands of different women councillors continue to attend meetings in place of their wives and raise issues related to the wards represented by their respective wives.

Interestingly, husbands of these women councillors not only attend meetings of the municipal council and raise issues related to the wards represented by their wives during various meetings of the civic body, they also visit police stations and offices of other government departments presenting themselves as municipal councillors and get their works done.

The same situation was witnessed during the municipal council general house meeting held on October 4. Husbands of as many as five women councillors were seen representing their wives. Though the women councillors were present during the meeting, they did not raise even a single issue during the proceedings.

During this month’s meeting, ward number 7 councillor Daljit Kaur was represented by her husband Balaur Singh Sivia, while Balbeer Singh represented his wife Daljeet Kaur, who is a councillor from ward number 6. Similarly, Sarita Katyal, councillor of ward number 19, was represented by her husband Rakesh Katyal, alias Kala, Vimal Kaur Multani of ward number 15 was represented by her husband Darshansharn Singh Multani and Ranjit Kaur Sidhu of ward number 3 was represented by her husband Davinderjit Singh Sidhu.

Most of these women councillors did not even attend the MC meetings in the past and their husbands used to attend the proceedings. But the situation changed a little after the issue was reported in some newspapers.

Even as the women councillors remain present during the meetings, they act like mute spectators as not even a single word has ever been uttered by them during the meetings. On being asked why husbands of women councillors were allowed to attend the meetings, MC president Baldev Krishan Dhir refused to comment and disconnected the phone. Despite repeated efforts, he could not be contacted again.



Factory workers nabbed for murder
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, October 9
The two factory workers, who gagged their colleague of Nepalese origin to death and fled with Rs 1.5 lakh lying in the cash counter of a factory unit located near Arora cinema on October 7, were arrested by the Shimlapuri police here today.

According to available information, a special team of Shimlapuri police nabbed the accused Jeet Bahadur (23) and Dumar Singh aka Raju (30) while they were about to cross the Indian boarder to sneak into Nepal.

The Shimlapuri police has confirmed the development. The police stated that the money had also been recovered. 



After two years, 2 booked for murdering youth
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, October 9
The city police today booked two men for murdering a youth by throwing him in front of a moving train. The case was registered two years after the incident took place. The duo was booked on the complaints of victim Sukhdev Singh's sister Kirpal Kaur.

The accused identified as Gurpreet Singh alias Gopi, Gurpreet Singh alias Manga, facing life term for murdering four persons, including two women and one child in Doraha.

Giving details, SHO Sahenwal said the duo was having illicit relations with Sukhdev Singh's mother Charanjit Kaur. When Sukhdev Singh objected, Charanjit Kaur along with Gopi and Manga hatched a conspiracy to kill her son.

The duo took Sukhdev Singh to Khanpur village where they offered him liquor laced with sedatives.

After consuming liquor, Sukhdev Singh fell unconscious and the duo threw him before a moving train near Jassowal railway track.

They had confessed before the police that Charanjit Kaur used to blackmail them, which forced them to kill the woman.

Kirpal Kaur said she fled to Bangluru following the death of her mother. "I overheard the conversation Gopi and Manga had with my mother following the killing of my mother. I got scared and fled from the house."

She learnt about her mother and sister's death on reaching the city. She also came to know that Gopi and Manga were arrested for killing her mother following which she reported the matter to the police. 



Punjab Women’s Games: Gurdaspur gymnasts clinch overall trophy
Anil Datt

Ludhiana, October 9
Gymnasts from Gurdaspur district gave stupendous performance to secure 195.80 points to fetch the overall trophy on the second day of the 37th Punjab State Women's Games being held at Guru Nanak Stadium here today.

Patiala district accumulated 177.85 points to finish as runners up while Amritsar district pocketed 164.10 points to content with third position.

In the track events, Jalandhar athletes continued with their winning streak adding two more gold medals in their kitty today. After bagging two gold medals yesterday, Jalandhar girls proved their mettle in 400m hurdles, 200m race and javelin throw events.

Anju Rani of Jalandhar district clocked 1:1.44 sec to win gold for her team in the 400-m hurdles while her team mate, Bhupinder Kaur took 1:02.27 sec to secure a silver medal. Hardeep Kaur of Shaheed Bhagat Singh Nagar district finished the race in 1:07.95 seconds and won the bronze medal.

In the 200-m final, Jalandhar district's Deepti Rani finished ahead of others to win top honours. She took 24.85 sec to clinch the gold and Naini Bala from Ludhiana clinched silver with timing of 25.53 seconds while Harpal Kaur of Sangrur district got the bronze medal with 26.63 seconds.

In javelin throw, Rupinder Kaur of Jalandhar with an attempt of 44.76mts won thegold medal, followed by another athlete from the city, Kashmir Kaur who threw the spear to a distance of 36.85mts to win the silver. Amandeep Kaur of Muktsar district with a throw of 34.19mts secured the bronze medal. Hosts Ludhiana opened their account today by winning two gold medals in swimming. Kawalpreet Kaur emerged winner in 400-m freestyle and 200m individual medley relay.

In 400-m freestyle, Shubhkarman, another swimmer from Ludhiana finished as runner up while Patiala's Jasmeen Sohi secured the third position.

Harsimran Kaur of Ropar and Manikiran Kaur of Sangrur secured second and third position, respectively in the 200-m medley relay.

In kabaddi (pre-quarter finals), Mansa defeatd Tarn Taran 30-21, Moga beat Kapurthala 68-44, Ferozepur outplayed Faridkot 37-30, Hoshiarpur overwhlemed Patiala 38-12, Ludhiana outnumbered Mohali 48-14, Barnala beat Bathinda 54-12, Ropar trounced Sangrur 39-9 and Jandhar toyed with Amritsar 71-7 to book berths in last eight stage.

In badminton, Sangrur outclassed Rooop Nagar 2-0, Shaheed Bhagat Singh Nagar defeated Patiala 2-0, Ferozepur beat Ludhiana 2-1 and Jalandhar blanked Amritsar 2-0 to advance into the semi finals.

Other results: Volleyball- Amritsar bt Bathinda, Hoshiapur bt Patiala, Jalandhar bt Moga and Ludhiana bt Nawanshahr.

Kho-kho: SAS Nagar bt Sangrur, Jalandhar bt Tarn Taran, Ludhiana bt Barnala, Bathinda bt Ferozepur and Ludhiana bt Barnala.

Basketball: Muktsar bt Bathidna, Sangrur bt SAS Nagar, Amritsar bt Barnala, Kapurthala bt Faridkot, Patiala bt Mansa, Ludhiana bt Hoshiarpur and Faethgarh Sahib bt Roop Nagar.



Trials held to select state swimming, waterpolo squads
Our Sports Correspondent

Ludhiana, October 9
As many as 55 swimmers in the men's section and 22 in the women's section attended trials conducted by the Punjab Swimming Association at the Municipal Corporation Pool, Rakh Bagh, here today.

The trials were held to select the Punjab state swimming teams (senior men and women) and probables for the state waterpolo squad (men), according to Apinder Singh Grewal, president of the body.

A five-member selection panel comprising Balraj Sharma, AS Grewal, GS Sandhu, Sushil Kohli and Amandeep Singh supervised the aspirants at the trials. The aspirants were required to meet the qualifying timings set by the Swimming Federation of India. The selected swimmers will attend coaching camp prior to their participation in the 65th edition of the Senior National Aquatic Championship slated to be held at Ranchi in Jharkhand from November 16 to 20. 



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