L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Protesters hold up trains
Kisan Morcha activists agitate in support of demands
Kuldip Bhatia

Ludhiana, April 3
The “rail roko” agitation by the Kisan Morcha of the BJP at several places in Punjab marginally affected the rail traffic. Protesters squatted on the track at Sahnewal, Doraha and Phagwara, besides several other stations in the Ferozepur division, for nearly two hours. The activists were seeking acceptance of their long-pending demands.

Railway officials said 12497 New Delhi-Amritsar Shan-e-Punjab Express was detained by protesters at the Doraha railway station for almost half-an-hour. The New Delhi-Amritsar Shatabdi Express (12029) was also delayed by 15 minutes.

Officials in the operating wing at the divisional headquarters said they had received reports that an Army special train was held up at the Phagwara railway station for some time while some other mail, express and passengers trains were marginally delayed due to the agitation.

Requesting anonymity, a senior railway official said the Divisional Railway Manager of Northern Railway, Vishwesh Chaubey, had spoken to the Punjab Chief Secretary and the Principal Secretary, Home, to take immediate steps to get the track cleared so that the rail traffic could be restored.

“The rail traffic on trunk route (Amritsar-New Delhi) was restored in the afternoon and all the trains are now running as per schedule,” railway officials maintained.

“Trains have become a soft target for protesters, who do not care about the inconvenience being caused to the public,” said Anil Aggarwal, who was travelling to Jalandhar with his family.

Another passenger, Bakshi Ram, a college teacher, said the frequency of such agitations was increasing. “The protesters hold thousands of passengers to ransom and cause immense financial loss to the railways, yet they get away scot free. The government and political groups should show some consideration towards those travelling by trains. The protesters must be dealt with firmly,” he said.


‘Rail Roko’ Protest
Farmers agitating for their survival, says BKU leader
Lovleen Bains

Sahnewal, April 3
In order to protest against the non-acceptance of the demand of bonus for farmers and implementation of the Swaminathan Commission report, the Bharatiya Janata Party (Kisan Morcha) today organised a "Rail roko" protest at Sahnewal for two hours.

Addressing protesters, Sukhminderpal Singh Grewal, national secretary, BJP Kisan Morcha said, “The protest against the Central Government will continue till our demands are met in toto.”. He said the Kisan Morcha activists stopped the trains in Sahnewal, Sangrur, Phagwara, Amritsar and Bathinda. "In the next phase of the agitation, we will move to Delhi where the morcha will launch an agitation in front of Parliament."

Grewal added that the debt-ridden farmers were passing through the toughest phase of their lives. "The farmers are agitating for their survival and the morcha wil take all possible steps to enable farmer to get his right due, the one that he has been denied for years together."



Cautious MC starts fogging well in time
Puneet Pal Singh Gill
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 3
With the mercury rising, the Ludhiana Municipal Corporation (MC) has started fogging to check the outbreak of dengue, malaria and other such diseases. Last year, several persons had died of dengue.

The MC has started fogging in “sensitive” areas, from where cases of dengue fever were reported in large numbers last year.

A meeting was held on March 29 and MC Commissioner Malwinder Singh Jaggi had directed the health branch and the operations and maintenance (O&M) cell to start fogging from April.

He had warned the staff that in case of an outbreak in any part of the city due to lack of preventive steps or lapse of the MC staff, those responsible would be dealt with sternly. “Departmental action would be taken against the persons concerned and an FIR would also be registered,” he said.

MC Joint Commissioner AS Sekhon said 10 fogging machines had been pressed into service. “We started fogging yesterday and covered Salem Tabri, Haibowal, Durga Puri and other adjoining areas. I have asked the concerned staff to ensure fogging is undertaken in all the wards of the city. Fogging will be done only in the evening and if anyone wants the MC to do fogging in their respective areas, they can contact us or the area councillor,” he said.

To check dengue, the MC had purchased 75 hand-held fogging machines from Germany by spending Rs 50 lakh in April last year. Later, these machines were handed over to the councillors.



Open manholes at Civil Hospital a hazard
Anupam Bhagria
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 3
The premises of Lord Mahavir Civil Hospital seem to be like any other street of the city, with open and partially covered manholes. There are four-five manholes near the parking area and the tuberculosis department, but none of them have been covered properly, making it risky for people visiting the hospital.

Dev Kumar, who was accompanying his father to the TB department for a checkup, said: “I had a narrow escape when my foot got stuck in a partially covered manhole near the TB department. I sprained my foot as the muscle got pulled.”

A patient, Ranjeeta, said: “My father fell into an open pit near the parking and sustained injuries. The pits should be covered. Anyone can fall into the open manholes and get injured.”

Dr Kramveer Goel, Senior Medical Officer of the hospital, said: “The manholes were covered earlier. Due to the ongoing renovation of sewerage in the hospital, the lids of the manholes have been removed. But I held a meeting with the contractor today and asked him to cover them to avoid any ontoward incident. He has assured me that the manholes will be temporarily covered till the renovation gets completed. After the renovation, he will cover them properly.”



4 injured in clash at court complex
Ashok Kaura

Phillaur, April 3
Tension prevailed in the court complex here today when four persons belonging to two groups sustained serious injuries with sharp-edged weapons in a clash that took place in the local judicial complex this afternoon.

The clash occurred when some armed assailants attacked Ashwini who had come to the court for a hearing in a case registered against him under Sections 326 and 506, IPC. The police could not stop them due to the presence of fewer policemen at the spot.

Ashwini was among the three injured. They were admitted to the local Civil Hospital. The assailants again struck at the hospital and tried to attack the injured in the presence of the police.

It was also learnt that a youth, Sonu, belonging to the assailants’ group also sustained injuries and was admitted to the hospital. The police has registered a case against the accused and is investigating the matter.



State-level panel to check supply of drugs in jails
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 3
The state government has decided to constitute a state-level committee amid allegations and complaints regarding the supply of narcotics drugs and psychotropic substances, besides other intoxicants, in Punjab jails.

A police official said on the condition of anonymity that the high-level committee would be headed by a chairman and have three members.

The Principal Secretary, Home, would be the Chairman of the committee while the Secretary/Special Secretary Home, Director-General of Police, Punjab, and the Director General of Police (Jails) would be the other members.

A letter issued by DS Bains, Principal Secretary, Government of Punjab, Department of Home Affairs and Justice, in this regard was recently received by all the Commissioners of the divisions, Civil Surgeons, Jail Superintendents and District Magistrates. The letter also states that the Principal Secretary will hold a meeting once in six months for all the divisions/districts of Punjab.

In the recent past, the issue of supply of drugs in jails had generated a controversy when Shashikant, the DGP Jails, Punjab, had admitted that a high-profile drug and criminal nexus was active in the jails and numerous inmates were under the grip of drug abuse. He had also admitted that certain jail officials were under the scanner for their role in helping the drug mafia.



Drugs being concealed in shoes
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 3
The supply of drugs and other intoxicants to jail inmates cannot realistically be possible without the connivance of certain jail officials. Also, family members and friends easily hand over the drugs to the inmates. Apart from this, while going for the hearing of their cases, criminals get the drugs from their “acquaintances”.

Having an experience of more than 35 years in various jails of Punjab, a retired Jail Superintendent disclosed on the condition of anonymity that in most cases, the jail authorities preferred to look the other way.

In many cases where the jail staff was involved, the supply of drugs to criminals/inmates was not a problem. “The criminals provide reward (money) to the staff for making the drugs available to them. A majority of inmates have an understanding with drivers and other employees who come to deliver ration at the jail to get drugs for them. In some cases, when they are produced in court, their acquaintances hand over the drugs to them,” he claimed.

At times, the authorities “fail” to supervise the meeting of the inmates and their family members. “Their family and friends supply drugs to them in different ways.

Some conceal the drugs in capsicum, watermelon and onions while the others hide it in lockets. The dose usually lasts for at least a month,” he said.

“Roughly boots”, with heavy sole, is also used to smuggle drugs into the jail.

The drugs are hidden in holes made in the soles. New shirts are brought for the inmates and the drugs are concealed in the collars.



Four judges transferred
Our Legal Correspondent

Ludhiana, April 3
The Punjab and Haryana High Court has transferred four judges from the city. Additional Sessions Judge Mohd Gulzar has been transferred to Gurdaspur and has been replaced by Additional Sessions Judge Kamaljit Singh Lamba from Sangrur.

KK Singla has taken over as the Additional Civil Judge (Senior Division) in place of Lukhvinder Kaur, who has been transferred to Amloh.

Judicial Magistrate Rana Kanwar Deep Kaur has joined in place of JMIC Jarnail Singh, who stands transferred to Moga.

Judicial Magistrate Deepti Gupta has been transferred to Fatehgarh Sahib. She will be replaced by Jagmilap Singh Khusdil.



Rly foot overbridge project way behind schedule
Charanjit Singh Teja
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 3
The railway foot overbridge project to connect all platforms and entry gates on either side of the railway station has got delayed as the railway authorities have failed to meet the deadline for the project.

The railway authorities admit that the project had been delayed as the deadline was extended several times and the work was still moving at a snail’s pace.

The construction work on the overbridge started two years ago in April 2010. The railway authorities had set a deadline of six months for the completion of the work.

In the absence of the foot bridge, connecting all the platforms, passengers have to climb several staircases to go from one platform to another.

There are three foot overbridges at the railway station. But to reach platform numbers 6 and 7, the passengers have to climb the stairs again and again.

Gaurav, a resident of Civil Lines, said: “I enter the station from the rear to get to platform numbers 2 and 3. We have to climb several staircases. It is tiring to reach the platforms by climbing the stairs every time. The project should be completed soon.”

“At present, the foot overbridges are narrow and one cannot pass them easily in a rush. I have missed my train several times because of the narrow bridges. We were hopeful of getting a respite, but the project is getting delayed again and again,” said Mohan Singh, a daily commuter.

Station Superintendent Ravinder Sharma said: “The project has been delayed and we have missed several deadlines. But now we are trying to complete the overbridge project as soon as possible.

Construction work is going on in full swing and we are hopeful that the overbridge would be completed within the next few months.”



MC recovers Rs 101 crore
Pending dues, VAT, HUDCO loan and octroi were sources
Puneet Pal Singh Gill
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 3
It seems that there will be no shortage of funds for carrying out development works in the cash-strapped Ludhiana Municipal Corporation. As the fiscal year ended on March 31, the Ludhiana Municipal Corporation has been able to generate a whopping revenue of around Rs 101 crore (in March alone), which includes recovery of pending dues, value added Tax (VAT), HUDCO loan, octroi and a long-pending grant from PIDB.

In February, the MC had started a comprehensive drive to check financial crunch in the state’s largest civic body and with a recovery of Rs 123 crore in two months- February and March- shows that the MC officials performed their duties well.

The revenue generation of around Rs 101 crore in March alone is 17.37 per cent of the MC’s total revised budget of last year, which was Rs 580.9 crore. In February, the MC had recovered an amount of around Rs 22 crore from residents.

Out of the total revenue generation of Rs 100.88 crore in March, Rs 43.86 crore has been collected through recovery of pending house tax, water supply and sewerage bills and by building branch, Rs 29.34 crore from the value added tax, Rs 22 crore through HUDCO loan, Rs 2.91 crore through octroi and Rs 2.75 crore as grant from the Punjab Infrastructure Development Board.

Out of total recoveries of pending dues in the last financial year, Rs 77.5 crore has been recovered as house tax, Rs 26.83 crore as water supply and sewerage bills, Rs 20 crore as building development charges, besides some others.

While speaking to The Tribune, MC Commissioner Malwinder Singh Jaggi claimed that due to such high revenue generation, bills related to all ongoing development works had been cleared upto January, bills related to general development works had been cleared upto November last year and upto 75 per cent of December last year.

“All contingency, petrol bills, pension, retirement benefits and other such bills have been cleared till date. I have also cleared the bills of operations and maintenance cell till January. Now our civic body is financially sound and there will be no dearth of funds for any development related works. Even the PIDB grant of Rs 2.75 crore was pending for a long time and I had to go through a series of meetings in Chandigarh before it got cleared,” claimed Jaggi.



Not many clients in city interested in advertising at post offices, now
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 3
With other avenues opening up in advertising, advertising through the postal department has rapidly decreased over the years. Whether it was the direct mail or the media post, their popularity has been declining rapidly. Media post - the facility offered by the postal department that used to be the favourite of customers at one point has few takers now.

Under the media post, a dedicated space of 3 ft by 4 ft at post offices is allotted for advertising, nowadays. The space has been allocated after Project Arrow. Prior to the project, post office used to be an open space, where any space according to a set price of the space could be rented out for advertising. The advertisement could be displayed outside, on vans and letterboxes also. However, after the introduction of Project Arrow, the branding of the postal department was the focus rather than advertising. "Because any corner could be rented out for advertising, it led to a kind of defacement of space," an official said. "Because branding and improvement of image of the postal department was one of the main components of Project Arrow, it was decided that only limited and dedicated space would be allotted to advertisers interested in advertising."

Currently, the rent of the space is Rs 100 per sq feet for a month. Although the space has been utilised at the head post office, the response to the facility at other post offices is only lukewarm, officials said. Even at post offices where Project Arrow is not implemented so far, the response of clients is not very good. The prospective advertisers will be interested in the main post offices, but the requisite space is restricted there because of new rules under Project Arrow. Now, there are so many other means of advertising, not many clients are interested in advertising at the post offices any longer, said an official.

Meanwhile, a space on envelopes and letters can also be utilised for advertising under the scheme, but these contracts happen at a much larger scale, at the directorate level, said another official requesting anonymity.



Railway Station Complex
Garbage pit a breeding ground for diseases
Charanjit Singh Teja
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 3
A small portion of the ground in front of the Speed Post Centre Office located inside the Railway Station Complex is being used as a garbage pit to dump garbage collected from the railway station. Ironically, this garbage pit has turned into a dumping ground, as the authorities have not been serious cleaning it from time to time.

Moreover, it has become a safe haven for stray dogs.

Railway authorities also use this ground to destroy old records and dump garbage.

Kashmir Singh, a local resident, said, "I often come to the Post Office which lies in front of this "dumping grounds". This place stinks and it becomes difficult for commuters to pass from here.”

"Now, as the summer has set in the dumping ground will become a breeding ground for diseases like dengue and malaria", said Ragu, a shoe maker.

Rakesh, a vendor, said, "The garbage dump leaves a bad impression about the city when tourists come here, he said. My relatives call the city dirty as garbage lies all across the city, even near the railway station," he said.

Ravinder Sharma, Station Superintendent, said, "We used to use this place to dump garbage because it has a garbage pit. But since the garbage is not cleared regularly it has become a dumping ground. The Railways has changed its contractor for cleanliness and the problem will be sort out within few days".



DBA polls
2,116 voters to decide fate of 23 contestants today
Rajneesh Lakhanpal
Legal Correspondent

Ludhiana, April 3
Contestants left no-stone unturned in order to ensure their victory on the last day of canvassing for the annual elections of the District Bar Association(DBA) going to be held on April 4.

The candidates and their supporters did hectic lobbying by involving bureaucrats, political figures and senior police officers. As many as 2,116 voters will decide the fate of 23 candidates for 11 different posts of the DBA.

Assistant Returning officer Mandip Sidhu apprised that polling would commence from 9 am to 4.30 pm without any lunch break. Security arrangements have been made in order to avoid any untoward incident. The results will be declared after counting.

SMS war was seen amongst the candidates in order to woo voters. But the same has irked the voters. Candidates were learnt to have purchased bulk packages of SMS.

Hectic lobbying was seen for the prestigious post of president of the DBA amongst the four contestants, including ex- DBA president Jagmohan Singh Waraich, five times vice -president of DBA Vijay B Verma, ex-vice president ND Chopra and Ravinder Grewal, ex-secretary of DBA.

It was quite difficult to judge their inclination towards any particular candidate. Almost same faces were seen in the lunch and late night parties of all the contestants.

There is direct fight between Parminder Pal Singh Ladi and Gurvinder Singh Sodhi for the coveted post of the ecretary. Same is the position for the post of joint secretary between Davinder Pal Singh and Aman Sharma.

For the post of vice-president, there was triangular contest between Yashbir Choudhary, Ashok Sharma and Rajesh Kumar Battish.

For the post of finance secretary, there is a fight between Sukhwinder Singh Bhatia and Gurjinder Singh Sahni.

For the six posts of executive members, there are 11 aspirants, including Amardeep Singh, Amrik Singh, Alka Rani, Daisy Singla, Deepak Kumar, Kulwinder Kumar Banga, Naveen Gupta, Prabhjeet Singh, Rajesh K Kapoor and Vaneet Nijhawan.



Woollen exporters hail slash in customs duty
Our Correspondent

Ludhiana, April 3
The Wool and Woollens Export Promotion Council (WWEPC) has hailed the reduction of basic customs duty on wool waste from 10 to 5 per cent, on wool tops, textile machinery and components from 15 to 5 per cent.

Expressing gratitude towards Union Finance Minister Pranab Mukherji and the Union Minister for Commerce, textile and Industry Anand Sharma for the proposed financial package of Rs 3,884 crore for waiver of loans of handloom weavers, WWEPC chairman Ashok Jaidka said that these concessions would have a positive impact on the industry and would make Indian exporters of wool, wool-blended products and acrylic knitwear competitive in the global market.

He said the WWEPC - an apex body under the Union Ministry of Textiles- had participated in several promotional international events in Italy, Mexico, Russia and Panana during the recently concluded financial year under the Market Development Assistance Scheme of the Ministry of Commerce and Industry with an objective to boost Indian export.

"The concerted efforts made by the WWEPC led to an increase of export of wool and wool-blended products of 39 percent in terms of Indian Rupees and 36 percent in terms of US Dollars during the period April-December 2011 as compared to the corresponding period last year. As per the data provided by the Directorate General of Commercial Intelligence and Statistics, Kolkata, the export during this period was Rs 1,952.13 crore (US$ 417 million) as against Rs 1,403.73 crore (US$ 307 million) of corresponding period last year," Jaidka said while adding that in view of the rising trends, the target of US$ 700 millions set for the current fiscal by the Ministry of textiles would be achieved.



Wear your attitude on funky tees this summer
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 3
Summer is in. It is time to flaunt the funky tees, cool capris, shorts and skirts. The youth in city colleges are not letting the opportunity go by as they can be seen sporting cool clothes now days.

For Paramjit, a BA student, the summer is the best time to tell about yourself and your attitude through quirky and fun messages. "I have so many T-shirts that are fnny, and I mostly wear them in summers when one can show them off."One of my t-shirts read," If found, please return to the nearest pub," he said."A T-shirt of mine has a message with the cartoon crowded train compartment " Indian Railways - 150 years of bringing people together," laughs another student. Rahul whose T-shirt reads, "If you don't like my attitude, quit talking to me," said a student.

For Harish, a BBA student, black T-shirt and blue jeans is his trademark style during summers. "There is simply no other match for me. The black tees are totally cool and I can't be out of this favourite combination," he says. The colourful T-shirts with funny interesting messages also appeal to Vanika, who sports a pink T-shirt with an interesting design.

“During summer, one must have a shapely and good looking body. I just love skin-tights and body-hugging clothes. I put in extra effort in the gym to look good in the skin-tights, because in winters all is hidden under woolens, in summers you're all exposed," he says.

For those who already possess good bodies, it is time to flaunt. "Big winter clothing hides all. So the well-carved body shows through the skin-tight T-shirts and I get compliments," says Sahil. Although winter clothing is fun with the cool jackets, but summers are the time to flaunt our physique," he says.

Girls are gaga over capris. Capris are the best thing about summers, says Deepika. Although I don't like the hot and humid weather, but I get to wear capris so it’s ok, she says. Capris have become a rage among the girls in the city.

Vinpreet, a faculty member of INIFD, says that hair bands, hats, middies, shorter form of bell bottoms above knee length can also appease the youth this season and colours like pink, yellow and orange are also likely to become popular among the youth this season.



Collector Rates
Congmen meet DC
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 3
A delegation of Congress leaders, including Malkit Singh Dakha, Krishan Kumar Bawa, Deepak Khandur, Nirmal Kaira etc met the Deputy Commissioner Rahul Tiwari today to submit a memorandum regarding withdrawal of about 20 per cent hike in Collector Rates. The leaders said that people in Punjab were already reeling under inflation, this would put additional burden on them.

The leaders said that Punjab was an agricultural state but the farmers here were in debts. Farmers were selling their land to run their homes. The Akali-BJP government had given a blow to the farmers and people of Punjab by increasing the Collector Rates.

Besides, VAT on diesel and petrol in Punjab should also be abolished to provide relief to the public. The Congress leaders hoped that Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal would come to the rescue of common man.



Training opens up job possibilities
Charanjit Singh Teja
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 3
Horticulture Supervisor Training Class running under Horticulture Department of Punjab Agriculture University (PAU) is generally not compared with other courses but when it comes to employment this course provides an easier way to it. This one year course is an initiative of PAU to promote horticulture in the state.

Experts of horticulture department train the students in various gardening skills like cultivation, planting, budding, trimming and cutting of trees. Students learn about how to spray fertiliser, insecticides and pesticides during the course. They are also trained in floriculture. In the vegetable class they learn to keep proper care of kitchen garden and floriculture.

Professor Pushpinder Singh Aulakh, from horticulture department, said, “There are number of opportunities for these students. They easily get job in hotels and farms as landscaping supervisor, or in government departments. Some even start their own nurseries and business.”

Earlier, the duration of the course was six months. Now, it’s a one-year programme. Students receive stipend of Rs 1,500 per month.

Professor Aulakh said the programme is very helpful for rural youth as they get employment after this one year. “We have started the course at our regional centres, Gurdaspur and Bathinda, as well,” said Aulakh.

Harpret Singh, a student here, said, "I joined here as I wanted to start my own nursery." Nirmal Kaur, the only girl among 25 boys, said, "I am pursuing the course for better employment opportunities."

Another student Navjot Singh said, "I heard that the course will be very useful to work in abroad. I am doing this course to get employment in foreign countries."



Purchase BT-cotton seed from genuine sources, say scientists

Ludhiana, April 3
Dr Manjit Singh Gill, Additional Director of Research (Crop Improvement), Punjab Agricultural University (PAU), advised the farmers to buy the BT- cotton seeds from the authorised dealer and also obtain the receipt for the purchase. It is also suggested to the farmers to sow the crop in time. The genuineness of the hybrid can be tested immediately after germination, said Gill.

Dr RS Sohu, said the simple method for identification of BT cotton (both BG-I and BG-II) is through the use of BT detection strips. These strips have been commercialised and there are two major suppliers of instant BT detection strips: Rapid Test Kits are available from Amar Immunodiagnostics Private Ltd and Desi Gen XpressstripsTM are available from DesiGen Diagnostic.

In order to detect a seed, the farmers should first remove the seed coat or extract two leaf discs of 1.0 cm diameter from the youngest leaf of cotton plant. The coat-less seed/leaf discs should then be transferred to a vial and 0.5 ml of extraction buffer should be added. — TNS



Bullock-cart owners to hold race despite ban
Race will be held at Baghaur village near Khanna on April 9
Our Correspondent

Khanna, April 3
Bullock-cart owners from Malwa-Doaba region today decided to hold bullock-cart races despite of ban. This decision was taken during a meeting held at Bhardalan village near Khanna. The owners decided to hold the race on April 9 at Baghaur village.

A ban was imposed by the district administration before Kila Raiupur games.

However, the organisers made it clear that they will hold these races under strict observation and said they would not flout any norms.

The meeting was chaired by Major Singh Kaddon, president of Malwa-Doaba Bull Welfare Association. Former MLA of Samrala Jagjivan Singh Khirnia also participated in the meeting.

The members said this sport is associated with their centuries-old tradition and culture.

The former MLA said he participated in the meeting as he was called by the organisers. “The decision to hold bullock-cart races is their own,” said the MLA.

On the other hand, the participants of the meeting were of the view that there should be no ban on bullock-cart races and they should be allowed to hold the race.

Nirrmal Singh, an active member of the association, said they would request the competent authorities in this regard.

He added that this centuries-old tradition should be saved.



Complainants withdraw case against Sutlej Club
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 3
The case filed by the two members of Sutlej Club against the president of the club, presiding officer of the recently conducted elections, general secretary Dr Rohit Dutta and bar-secretary Rakesh Kapoor, has been withdrawn by the complainants.

Sources said Sanjiv Dhanda, former general secretary of the club, and Navtej Singh Natt, a member, had filed a case in local courts against above mentioned officials and members of the club for not conducting the elections in a fair manner.

Both Dhanda and Natt maintained that very short period was given to conduct the elections by the president of the club and elections were not conducted as per the constitution of the club.

Today was the hearing of the case. Natt said to maintain the reputation of the prestigious club he had decided to withdraw the case. "I will personally request the deputy commissioner-cum-president of the club for recounting the votes, especially for the post of bar-secretary in which I lost by a margin of about 5 to 7 votes,” said Natt.

Dr Rohit Dutta said on reaching courts today he got to know that complainants had withdrawn the case.



No books, no studies
Punjab School Education Board fails to provide books to schools
Charanjit Singh Teja
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 3
The Punjab School Education Board failed to provide all the syllabus books to students even after the new academic session started on April 2. Students are facing problems as they have no books to study. On the other hand, the teachers of government schools are in a fix as students do not have books. Sources said the students are borrowing books from senior students.

Board authorities have sent some books in the first instalment. Schools authorities are waiting for the next lot, but the district depot has no book to distribute. According to the norms of PSEB, all the books should be distributed to schools before the academic session begins. But delay in arrival of books has become a regular affair of PSEB.

Gurbeer Singh, from Master Cadre Union, said, “The board had to provide all the books to schools before the new session starts. It is useless to teach students without the books. The delay is students studying in government schools."

Jaswinder Singh, president of Maths Teacher Union, said, “The board should send the books as soon as possible. It should update the syllabi on PSEB website and send a hard copy to all the schools."

Anil Sharma, district depot manager, said, “We are aware of the shortage of books. We have sent a list, naming the books that are in shortage, to the joint secretary of PSEB.

We hope that the books will be provided within a few days."



Paper leak rumour spreads panic
Lovleen Bains

Doraha, April 3
The rumour of paper leak of BA Part-I Compulsory English of Panjab University created panic among the candidates here. They were found making enquires about the authenticity of the news by reaching the institutes themselves.

“It’s been two or three days that I am hearing about the leak of paper. However, nobody could ascertain whether the news was authentic or not. But the news surely disturbed my mental peace. After hearing the news I could not concentrate on my studies for more than two hours. Everyone said the news was correct. So, I rang up my college to confirm it was told that the news was not true. Yet, I visited the college to confirm it personally. The principal said it was nothing more than a rumour,” said Radhika, BA Part-I student.

“I was delighted after hearing about the leak. I thought I can have more time to prepare assuming that the exam shall now be postponed. However, it turned out to be a rumour,” said Vikas Mattu, another student.

“The students were very disturbed on hearing the news. A number of them rang up the college while the others visited the college to confirm the news. People who have spread the rumour should be punished,” said Dr Narinder Singh Sidhu, Principal, Guru Nanak National College, Doraha.

Controller examinations of Panjab University (Chandigarh) AK Bhandari said the news was a rumour and that the paper shall be conducted as per scheduled.



Good response to PAU farm literature
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 3
The initiative taken to enhance the content and quality of PAU publications has started producing results. During the March Kisan Melas of PAU held at Amritsar, Ballowal Saunkhri, Bathinda, Patiala, Ludhiana, Faridkot and Gurdaspur, the farmers purchased farm literature worth over Rs 5.2 lakh. This is higher in comparison with last year's sale.

The additional director of communication, Dr Jagtar Singh Dhiman, said during the melas nearly 1,000 members enrolled for the farm magazines like Changi Kheti and Progressive Farming. Farmers bought 309 copies of Field Problems of Important Crops.

With the efforts of the PAU Vice Chancellor, Dr Baldev Singh Dhillon, the Department of Agriculture has placed an order of 30,000 copies of Package of Practices for Crop of Punjab (Kharif) that shall be distributed to farmers of all 22 districts.

The Director of Agriculture, Punjab, Dr Mangal Singh Sandhu and Joint Director Dr Gursewak Singh Sandhu said the move will help the Punjab farmers to know about the latest technical know-how of PAU.

The Package of Practices is a useful resource material for the farmers. They can plan their cultivation process after learning about the new progress in the field.

The increasing sale of PAU publications indicates that PAU technologies are well received by farmers.



college notes
Polio immunisation drive
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 3
NCC cadets (3Pb Girls Battalion) of Guru Nanak Girls College, Model Town, launched pulse polio immunisation drive along with the visiting Shri Krishna Hospital under the guidance of Dr Satish Sood, medical superintendent.

All children under the age of five years were given oral polio drops. Principal of the college, Dr Charanjit Mahal, motivated the cadets. She said the drive aims at covering every individual in the country.

She said not even a single child should be missed. She said timely immunisation is the most effective way of preventing the disease. Older siblings who are under 5 years of age must also be vaccinated in case they have missed the dosage.

Business innovations course launched

Commerce department of SCD Government College has launched MCom (Business Innovations) at its campus in order to cater to the needs and aspirations of the fast expanding fields of globalise industry and management sciences.

Panjab University, Chandigarh, will hold entrance test (O-CET) for 40 seats of MCom (Business Innovations). The test will be held on June 16 (Saturday) at Chandigarh centres. The prospectus, including the application form, is available online at Panjab University website www.ocetadmissions.puchd.ac.in.



CMCH organises Easter programme
Tribune New Service

Ludhiana, April 3
About 90 students and doctors of the CMCH are organising a special performance to reflect on the life of Lord Jesus Christ during the Passion Week. The one hour pageant coordinated by the fellowship department and patronised by Dr Abraham G Thomas, Director CMCH, reflects how Lord Jesus lived, died and resurrected.

Father Stanley in his prayer asked for world peace along with happiness for the CMCH staff and their families.

As many 18 songs were sung along with choreography, shadowgraph and acting revitalised the audience.

The program concluded with a prayer. Associate Director, Dr Kim Mammen, Dr SM Bhatti, principal of Medical College, principal of College of Nursing Professor Ponnamma R Singh, principal of Dental College Dr Abi M Thomas, Medical Superintendent, Dr Kanwal Masih, Deputy Medical Superintendent Dr Nitin Batra and Dr Valsa Abraham were also present on the occasion.



Symposium on kidney cancer
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, April 3
DMCH and Physician's Forum will jointly organise a symposium on "Recent advances in kidney cancer" on April 6 at Hotel Park Plaza. It was informed by Dr Baldev Singh Aulakh, Professor of Urology and Head, Transplant Surgery at DMCH. He said kidney cancer accounts for about 2 per cent of all malignancies in the USA.

The kidney cancer occurs mainly due to cigarette smoking, obesity and high blood pressure (hypertension). Prem Kumar Gupta, secretary of DMCH Managing Society, will be the chief guest on the occasion.

Dr Amit Bahl, chairman of South-West England and South-Wales Uro-oncology Group and expert advisor to NICE on new drugs in renal cancer, will present a talk on medical advances in kidney cancer. This will be followed by lecture on recent surgical options and advances in kidney cancer by Dr Baldev Singh Aulakh. The talk will include laparoscopic techniques and role of robot-assisted surgery.



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