L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Man kills 23-yr-old son
 Police said, according to villagers, the victim, Varinder Singh, was a drug addict and used to demand money for drugs from his father
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 21
In a barbaric incident, Harjinder Singh, a resident of village Bulara near here, killed his 23-year-old son Varinder Singh. Not only this, the man, in connivance with some other close relatives, performed the last rites of his son too at the cremation ground, Dholewal Chowk. Yesterday, the father held the "antim ardas" of his son.

Giving details about the incident, Harpal Singh, in charge, CIA staff, said a case had been registered under Section 302/201 against five persons for committing this henious crime. Those booked included father Harjinder Singh, Davinder Singh, Harpreet Singh, a resident of Neechi Mangli, Pargat Singh of Ram Nagar and Bhupinder Singh. Amongst them, one was the maternal uncle of the deceased while another was his brother. The case has been registered by Thana Sadar Police on the basis of complaint lodged by one Jaswinder Singh of village Bulara.

Harpal Singh said on June 12, Jaswinder Singh was passing near the residence of the deceased when he heard Harjinder Singh saying that he was fed up with his son Varinder Singh and wanted to finish off the matter of daily arguments with him.

According to the complainant, all accused were badly thrashing Varinder Singh and he fell on the floor in an unconscious condition. After this, two accused, Harpreet Singh and Pargat Singh, took the "body" of Varinder Singh and said that since he was not well, they were taking him to hospital.

The next day, villagers came to know that Varinder Singh was cremated at the cremation ground in Dholewal Chowk instead at the village cremation ground. On June 14, the last rites of Varinder Singh were performed at Kiratpur Sahib by the accused.

The police said according to villagers, Varinder Singh was a drug addict and demanded money for drugs from his father everyday. The police maintained that Varinder Singh even used to threaten his father with dire consequences if he was not given money. The victim was badly beaten up by the accused and he received a head injuries following which he died. No arrest has been made so far, said the police.


GLADA carries out demolition in 3 unauthorised colonies
Kuldip Bhatia

Ludhiana, June 21
The Greater Ludhiana Area development Authority (GLADA) resumed its drive against the development of unauthorised colonies on the periphery of the city when the ongoing internal development works in three such colonies were dismantled today.

Led by GLADA Additional Chief Administrator Rupanjali Kartik, officials of the regulatory wing pulled down roads, sewerage lines, street lights and electricity poles in three unauthorised colonies on Dhandra Road which were being developed in an area of around 60 acres.

Reiterating the government policy of zero tolerance against unplanned development, the GLADA ACA said the body was in the process of putting names of some 1,007 illegal colonies under various stages of development in its jurisdictional area on the GLADA web site in a couple of days.

She said notices under the relevant provisions of the Regional Town Planning and Development Act and the Punjab Apartment and Property Regulation Act 1995 had already been issued to the developers of unauthorised colonies for demolition of all unlawful development works and structures in their colonies. "On their failure to do so, GLADA will invoke provisions of the Act to dismantle the internal development projects at the risk and cost of the promoters."

Making it clear that the GLADA regulatory wing had its task clearly cut to act ruthlessly against the defaulting developers, Kartik said exception would be made only in case of those developers who came forward to get their colonies compounded under the prevalent policy of the state government for this purpose.

Zero tolerance

"The government has a policy of zero tolerance against unplanned development and was in the process of putting names of some 1,007 illegal colonies under various stages of development in its jurisdictional area on the GLADA website in a couple of days." — Rupanjali Kartik, GLADA Additional Chief Administrator



Controversy over resident's death during drive
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 21
On the controversy of a resident's death of during the demolition drive here, ACA GLADA Rupanjali Karthik said the resident had suffered a heart attack before and today his condition deteriorated but it had nothing to do with the demolition drive.

Colonisers, in an attempt to settle their scores with the GLADA staff, approached the victim's family members to pressurise them to say that the person had died due to the ongoing demolition drive, said Karthik.

"But I have come to know that the family members refused to listen to the colonisers. They have reportedly said that since the person was already suffering from a heart ailment, it was a natural death and it had nothing to do with the demolition drive," said Karthik.

Meanwhile, DS Chawla, an uncle of the deceased, Raminder Singh Chawla, 52, a resident of Dugri, said the family was unaware about the cause of his death. "But we have donated his eyes. The family is not in a position to reach to any conclusion whether it was a natural death or he lost his life during in the scuffle with the GLADA staff," said Chawla.

The property dealers are, however, claiming that he lost his life as the GLADA staff, on demolition drive, "pushed" many persons on the spot to clear the colonies. Some of the property dealers have reportedly announced a call for a bandh tomorrow.



2 killed in road mishap
Gurminder Singh Grewal

Machiwara, June 21
Two motorcycle-borne persons were killed when they were hit by a speeding tempo from behind near Jharaudi village. As per information, Balkar Singh, a resident of Chakki village, was going on a motorcycle towards Jodhwal village from Machiwara with one of his close relatives, Gurmeet Singh, a resident of Jodhwal village.

When they reached near Jharaudi village, suddenly a tempo coming from behind hit them and they both were crushed under the tempo and they both died on the spot.

The police reached the spot and took the bodies to the Civil Hospital, Samrala, for a post-mortem. A case has been registered.



Health dept seals 3 ultrasound centres
Anupam Bhagria
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 21
A team of the health department today sealed three ultrasound centres for four weeks in the city, which were functioning without radiologists.

Deputy medical commissioner, Ludhiana, Dr AK Handa said, “The ultrasound centres were sealed on the instructions of the Civil Surgeon Ludhiana, Dr Subhash Batta.” A three-member team, including DMC, Ludhiana, Dr AK Handa, Dr Prabhlen Sahota and Navneet Singh, checked these ultrasound centres and sealed these for four weeks.

We found that these were functioning without radiologists. Dr Handa said, “We sealed three ultrasound centres under Section 20 (3) of the PNDT Act 94. These include Satluj Diagnostic Centre, Habiowal Kalan, Ludhiana X-Ray Ultrasound Centre, Gaushala Road, Division Number 3, Maa Vaishno Devi Charitable Hospital, Azad Nagar, Ludhiana. We observed that radiologists at these centres have left, but these were functioning as usual. It is mandatory to have a radiologist for running an ultrasound centre. In case there is no radiologist, the centre owner is supposed to inform the Civil Surgeon, following which the machine is sealed till a new radiologist comes.”

Cold drinks samples fail

The health department collected 40 samples of eatables and cold drinks in May. Out of these, two samples of cold drinks failed. One of the cold drinks had expired, while the other was found sub-standard.”



Drug-addict arrested, used to steal cars
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 21
The Focal Point police has arrested Saddam Hussain, an alleged drug addict, who used to steal cars. Several car theft cases and other cases have already been registered against the accused, who was arrested by the police from his residence here today. The police maintained that his father was a wrestler.

Devinder Chaudhry, SHO, Focal Point, said that the police had recovered a Qualis vehicle from his custody, which was stolen about 15 days ago. A case against Saddam Hussain was registered on June 4 on the complaint filed by one Ayub Khan in this connection. While interrogation, Hussain admitted to having committed several crimes, the police said.

The police further added that after stealing the Qualis, Hussain went to village Mehlon, Nawanshahr. He left the car there and stole another Verna car. On his way, he forcibly got a woman into his car, raped her and left her on the road after threatening her with dire consequences. He took the Verna car to Mukerian and stole an Indica car from a garage. On his way back to Nawanshahr, he met with an accident, as he was under the influence of drugs. He got injured too.

Chaudhry further added that at Thana Behrampur and other police stations several cases against Saddam Hussain were registered.



Scrap dealer held in theft case
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 21
The Focal Point police has arrested a scrap dealer in connection with a theft incident that took place at a factory in the Focal Point. Devinder Chaudhry, SHO Focal Point, said the accused has been identified as Radhey Sham, who worked as a scrap dealer in Mahadev Nagar.

The police said at one unit in the Focal Point area, theft was committed a few days ago. On the basis of the complaint filed by the factory owner, Ravi Kant, a case had been registered against a factory worker, Puran Prakash, alias Nepali. After investigations, the police came to know that the theft was committed by the factory workers.

Puran Prakash left the factory and the police got suspicious. After arresting three other workers, the police got to know that scrap was sold to Radhey Sham of Mahadev Nagar.

After the arrest, Radhey Sham admitted to the police that the stolen scrap was sold to Shankar, who had given Rs 62,000 for the scrap. The police is looking for both Shankar and Puran Prakash.



unaided colleges, teachers
‘hard time for them’
Lovleen Bains

Doraha, June 21
Unaided colleges and teachers are passing through a real critical phase and it is the duty of the state government to come to their rescue as early as possible, if it has to think in terms of generating higher education among the present day youth expressed Tarsem Bahia, chairman, Punjab Educationists Forum, during a meeting held at Doraha, here today.

He said, at present only 13 per cent youth of India is getting higher education and our national targets is to increase it to 30 per cent. The national target could be achieved only by massive state funding of state higher education. Private sector could not play much role in enhancing the access and state funded education was the only answer. The education provided by commercial sector also suffered from quality deficit on account of lack of infrastructure, well stocked libraries and qualified faculty in these institutions. The situation requires for immediate government attention so that national goals could be met. Prof KBS Sodhi, vice-chairman of the forum viewed that the government should properly regulate the private higher education to put an end to the exploitation of teachers and students in these situations.

Keeping in view of the positive role of non-commercial private education system, the Central Government, State Government and the University Grants Commission should extend liberal development and maintenance grants to the un-aided private colleges. Also, the Punjab Affiliated College Service of Security Act 1974 should be suitably amended to provide reasonable security to the teachers of private sector so that they could live a life of dignity and serve the nation.

Immediate pay revision of teachers of non-commercial unaided staff in position as on Jan 1, 2006 must be done as recommended by the UGC and the Central Government which provided for 80 per cent financial assistance from the Central Government and 20 per cent from state government to those colleges which are recognised under 2F and 12B opined director Jaswant Singh Gill.

Dr Kuldip Singh, fellow PU and former general secretary PCCTU said that the problems of teachers working on un-aided posts include under-payment, lack of security of service, denial of facilities such as deduction of Provident Fund, maternity leave benefits and opportunities for career advancement. The teachers, working in these institutions, should be made comfortable and satisfied to boost their morale so that they may contribute in the lofty task of nation building. If the teacher is not fully satisfied mentally or materially, he could not be expected to impart value-based education, he added.



‘Teachers should be relevant to new systems’
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 21
“Make yourself Indispensable to the Education System,” said Dr Sanjeev Sharma, Director, Management Professional College, UBS, Chandigarh, while deliberating on “ “Interactive Tools and Techniques in Professional Education” during the PTU sponsored faculty development programme on “Emerging Paradigms in Professional Education organised by GGN Institute of Management and Technology (GGNIMT).

Dr Sharma condemned the usage of classical style of teaching (oral transmission) for a 21st century learner. He recommended that teachers should assert themselves and become increasingly relevant to the current environment. He exhorted the empathy with the students, by reading and doing live projects.



12 die of cancer in six months
 Health department swings into action, from teams, conducts survey
Gurminder Singh Grewal

Khanna June 21
The health department Fatehgarh Sahib today swung into action after the plight of the residents of village Machhrai Khurd that was high lighted by The Tribune about more then 12 deaths in the village in the last six months due to cancer and some other water borne diseases.

One more death last night was reported from the village of Gurbachan Singh. His wife Jasvir Kaur alleged that his death was due to polluted water in the village, however, the CMO Fatehgarh Sahib termed it a sudden death.

The CMO Gurmel Singh Chahal when contacted, informed that a medical camp was organised in the village and water samples were collected by the health department teams and the real cause will be detected after the out come of the report. He said that 15 teams of health department were formed and house-to-house survey was conducted about the suffering patients.

He said that special drive in the village would continue for a week. He said that two persons with cancer symptoms were identified and their names will be forwarded for the cash help of 1.5 lakh per person by the department. He said that they are mobilising the people of the village to drink boiled water to save them from water borne diseases. However, some villagers alleged that no one cared about their complaints to check polluted water and the health departments swung into action after the media reports were published.



Farmers upset over MSP
Gurminder Singh Grewal

Khanna, June 21
Asia’s Biggest Grain Market, Khanna, is witnessing a change in the minds of farmers about the re-cycling of wheat and paddy as the farmers of the area are coming forward to increase the area under maize and sun flower crops, but they are facing hardships as the government has failed to announce the MSP for these crops.

A survey in the area reveals that the production of these crops has increased on to some extent but they had to face difficulties for sale these crops. Although the government appealed to the farmers every year for change the cycle of paddy and wheat yet there are no arrangements for other crops as substitutes.

Preet Kamal Singh, a farmer of Khanna alleged that if the farmers showed courage to come out from the cycles of paddy and wheat and they sowed some other crops they faced difficulties, as there is no MSP and any other kind of help from the government. He further revealed that it is astonishing that they had been forced to sell the maize crop from Rs 800-975 that is less than that of the previous year.

Manjit Singh, of Ganduan village said that they sow these crops in their field but due to apathy attitude of the government they had to sell their to private players on less rate. He said that the production value of these crops is high as input costs have marginally increased.

When secretary Market Committtee, Khanna, Malkit Singh, was contacted in this regard, he said that about 12,892 quintals of maize has arrived at Khanna mandi and about 10,000 quintals more is expected where as last year the total arrival was only 16700 quintals up to month of August. He also informed that 46,044 quintals of sunflower have reached in the grain market, Khanna, till date where as it was only 24,647 quintals last year.



‘Lab should be established for sample testing in city’
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 21
A meeting of Advisory Committee of the Sub-Division, Ludhiana (West), was held here today under the leadership of Nayab Tehsildar Mullanpur and executive magistrate, Ludhiana, Kanwarjit Puri at the office of the SDM (west). It was attended by assistant Civil Surgeon, Ludhiana, Dr Yashpal Mehta, District Health Officer Dr Kulwinder Singh, drug inspector Sukhbeer Chand etc.

Addressing the meeting Nayab Tehsildar gave some suggestions to the health department employees for making it better. One of the members of Advisory Committee of the Sub-Division, Ludhiana, (west) said, "To curb the practise of adulteration, a laboratory should be established in the city for testing the samples of eatables, so that one may get the report at the earliest and strict action should be taken against the anti social elements."

Following this, the ACS Dr Yashpal Mehta said that he had already written about it to the higher authorities. Another point, raised in the meeting was of stray dog menace. About this it was decided to write to the Municipal Corporation, Ludhiana.

The committee members appreciated role of health department in curbing the sale of habit-forming drugs. The members suggested that in future representatives of Punjab Pollution Control Board, Police department and Municipal Corporation etc should also be asked to attend the meeting, so that issues related to health department could be redressed.



Superstitions still prevail: Some days keep villagers away from treatment
Anupam Bhagria
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 21
The wheel of time has already entered in a hi-tech world but there are still some people who believe in superstitions as far as starting treatment on a particular day is concerned. Despite sickness, they try to skip treatment on any auspicious day or a day, which they feel they are scared of.

This tendency is more common in rural people who preferably stay away from medicines on some days like Thursday, Poornima, Sakranti, Amavasya, New Year, Diwali, Lohri etc. The mania behind this is that their treatment will get prolonged in case they started their treatment on any of these said days.

Commenting about it Dr Rajinder Gulati, a pediatrician serving in a government hospital said, “It has been observed that whenever Sakranti of any month comes (a new month starts in desi way), rural patients try to avoid new treatment as some of these feel that any treatment started on Sakranti will prolong their treatment."

While Dr Ashwani Malhotra, Senior Medical Officer (SMO) at Community Health Centre, “People still believe in superstitions although through our awareness camps we keep telling them to shun away myths. Some people do not take medicines on Monday as they are fasting while others do not start treatment on Thursday or any other auspicious day considering that it will prolong their disease.”

Requesting anonymity a gynaecologist said, "Not only patients but some pregnant women also feel scared while getting vaccinated or treated on a particular day like Amavasya and Poornima." She said, "Due to such bend of mind of people some days are really lean days for us in the OPD when very few patients come."



Stamps on Shekhwati, Warli released
Gurvinder Singh
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 21
Postage stamps on Shekhwati and Warli paintings released at the postal department. Art and philately enthusiasts are excited about these postage stamps. It is great that the postal department has released stamps related to art, says Preeti, a city-based artist.

Talking about Warli paintings, Harpreet Kaur, another city-based artist said that these paintings depict life and its simplification. The forms are very simple, and people from Warli tribe used to create these paintings on their own, she says. These are very systematic sand depicts how close they were to real life.

Warli painting is a form of tribal art, done by a tribal called Warli. The tribe largely resides in Dahanu in Thane district in Maharashtra. Their homes were decorated with these painting on festive occasions. Warli painting is done on a background of red mud. Rice paste mixed in milk or water is used for these paintings traditionally. According to an artist, the images of the gods and goddesses are created in white and these red and yellow since these are easily available in the form of turmeric and red mud.

Shekhawati paintings have their provenance in Rajasthan. The palaces, forts and many residential and other buildings of the region are adorned with these frescoes dating back to the 18th century and 19th century. Shekhawati frescoes have influences of Persian, Jaipur and the Mughal schools are admired for their perfection. The paintings mostly used colours made from naturally available ingredients, and there is no deterioration in the quality and layers of paint even after centuries. The pictures beautifying the walls depict historical, hunting, personal and religious scenes painted in various styles.

According to Parveen Kumar, lecturer in fine arts department at Government College for Women, Shekhawati paintings are colourful as the traditional art from Rajasthan, which is usually colourful and have the predominance of warm colours like red, yellow and oranges.



Rare surgery performed
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 21
Harpreet Kaur, a 60-year-old housewife of Bhurthala village, Sangrur district, had a sudden onset of severe pain and swelling of the right arm. The disorder was so alarming that her arm size went up four times. She was referred to Dr Harinder Singh Bedi, head of cardio-vascular endovascular and thoracic surgery at the Christian Medical College and Hospital, Ludhiana.

On examination and investigation, it was found that Harpreet had a condition called deep venous thrombosis (DVT) of the upper limb.

Seeing the gravity of the situation, first a procedure called catheter directed thrombolysis (CDT) was done where a strong blood thinner (tPA) was directly given into the clot. The procedure was successful. Harpreet’s arm immediately improved and she can use the arm fully now.

Other members of the team are Dr A Joseph, Dr Sheetal Garg, Dr Melchi, Dr Paul, Dr Dinesh, Dr William, Dr Pearl and Dr Savan.

Rare disorder
Dr Bedi explained that though DVT is not an uncommon disorder, it is extremely rare for it to occur in the arm, as it usually occurs in the legs. The risk is twofold, firstly it disables the hand and can sometimes lead to gangrene, and secondly the clot in the vein can dislodge and travel to the heart where it can cause a potentially fatal condition called pulmonary embolism.




Mizoram has high incidence of lung cancer among women, say experts
Anupam Bhagria
Tribune News Service

Ludhana, June 21
The state of Mizoram has the most incidents of lung cancer among women, where every 240 women among the population of 100,000 suffer from lung cancer while both male and female suffer from stomach cancer. For lung cancer, the reason is of early age smoking by women, said P Gangadharan stratistician and Dr M N Bandyopadhyaya, faculty member of National Centre for Disease Informatics and Research, Bangalore, who recently visited Mohan Dai Oswal Hospital.

Dr Bandyyopadhyaya said, "Tripura was the first state which declared cancer as Notifiable disease as it has national implications. It was followed by West Bengal, Meghalya, Punjab and Gujrat."

These experts were here yesterday along with Dr A Nandakumar Director-in-charge of National Centre for Disease Informatics and Research, Bangalore to make cancer and medical experts aware as how to register cancer patient in the atlas of cancer patients of Punjab. 
The team is holding interactions with cancer experts of he state for more than a month.

Dr Ravi Shankar Singh Medical Superintendent of Mohan Dai Oswal Multi-speciality and cancer hospital said, ''Punjab is the fourth sate of India to declare cancer as notifiable disease. It was declared in October 2011. As government wants to keep record of it, so every cancer expert treating and diagnosing cancer patient will now have to register all the details of that patient along with treatment being given to the patient to National Cancer Registry Programme. In this workshop experts have been given comprehensive details as how to register online about it."

Gangadharan said, "All this detail will help to analyse the government to check demographic variations of cancer as which type of cancer is more prevalent at which particular pocket and what are the reasons behind it. 
How it can be stopped. We have covered North-Eastern states, Chennai, Karnataka, Gujrat, Maharastra, Hyderbad, Delhi under National Cancer Registry programme. In this we found that incidence of Maharashtra is quite less i.e. 30 to 35 patients in every 1,00,000. We are yet to cover states like Bihar, Jharkhand etc under it."

Dr Manjit Singh Bal principal investigator at Population Base Cancer Registry, Patiala, said and professor and head of pathology department at Government Medical College, Patiala, said, "As Punjab government has declared cancer as notifiable disease, so it is the need of the hour to sensitize and make experts aware about different aspects of registering a cancer patient for development of an atlas of cancer in Punjab."



mc house
Cong lobbies for opposition post
Puneet Pal Singh Gill
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 21
As the Akali leaders are busy lobbying for the post of Mayor, Congress councillors have been lobbying to decide on the name for leader of opposition in the MC House. In the 75 member Ludhiana Municipal Corporation House, Congress has a total of 19 councillors, two more than its tally in 2007.

Gurpreet Singh Bassi, Balkar Singh Sandhu and Hem Raj Aggarwal are the Congress councillors whose name have been making rounds for this post.

As far as seniority is concerned, Congress councillors Balkar Singh Sandhu from ward number 55, Hem Raj Aggarwal from ward number 27 and Jai Parkash Sharma from ward number 30 are four time councillors. Sanjeev Kumar Talwar from ward number 39 is a three time councillor, Gurpreet Singh Bassi from ward number 53 has been councillor twice, while his wife Sukhchain Bassi has been councillor once.

Ludhiana West MLA Bharat Bhushan Ashu will also play an important role in the selection of leader of opposition because out of total 19 Congress councillors in the MC House, nine are from his group. These include Deepika Bhalla from ward number 54, Narinder Sharma from ward number 52, Mamta Ashu from ward number 49, Balkar Singh Sandhu from ward number 55, Gurpreet Singh Bassi from ward number 53, Maharaj Singh Raji from ward number 28, Jai Parkash Sharma from ward number 30, Rakesh Prashar from ward number 36 and Sanjeev Kumar Talwar from ward number 39.

In the outgoing MC House, Sham Sunder Malhotra was the leader of opposition. But this time, Malhotra lost to Gurpreet Singh, an independent.

After the 2007 MC elections, Prem Mittal, a councillor from ward number 51, was made the leader of opposition in the MC House. But during the 2009 Lok Sabha elections, Mittal, along with his political mentor and Congress heavyweight Gurcharan Singh Galib, joined Shiromani Akali Dal (Badal). Presently, Prem Mittal is an Akali MLA from Mansa and after being elected as MLA, he resigned from the MC in April this year.

After Prem Mittal joined Akali Dal, Hem Raj Aggarwal was made leader of opposition for one year, while Sham Sunder Malhotra remained at this post for around 18 months.

A senior Congress leader said that this time the party will choose a councillor who can take the ruling combine head on. “The leader of opposition has to be a fiery leader who can keep a check on the wrongdoings of Shiromani Akali Dal (Badal) and Bharatiya Janta Party councillors. Gurpreet Singh Bassi is a young and vocal leader who can do that,” said the leader while requesting anonymity.

It is learnt that a meeting of the Congress party to discuss this issue was held a few days back. The final take on electing the leader of opposition is likely to be taken in the coming few days.



MSME sanctions three new clusters
Manav Mander
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 21
The ministry of micro, small and medium enterprises (MSME) has sanctioned three new clusters under the “cluster scheme” and the ministry also allowed starting soft interventions of exiting clusters under the cluster development scheme of the ministry of MSME. A total of seven new clusters were approved for Punjab.

This is for the first time that Punjab has got so many clusters in one go. The Central government will provide up to 90 per cent of the assistance under these clusters and the maximum grant could be up to Rs 12 crore for each cluster.

“These clusters will try to improve the quality of their products under the common facility centre to be constructed under these schemes. Firstly, these clusters will prepare a diagnostic study report for which the grant will be provided and after that the grant up to Rs 22.25 lakh will be provided under soft intervention and later on a cluster can get a grant up to Rs 12 crore under hard intervention by the government,” said Badish Jindal, president of the Federation of Punjab Small Industries Association.

These clusters were sanctioned at the steering committee meeting of the ministry of MSME held yesterday, which was also attended by SS Dhillon, director MSME; Mahesh Khanna, GM DIC; Badish Jindal, a member of the national board of MSME, and general managers of districts concerned were also present.

Kamal Chopra, general secretary OPA, said while conducting the diagnostic study, major problems found were non-availability of testing lab, dearth of skilled manpower, non-availability of organised market channel, stiff competition from nearby clusters, insufficient modern management skills and tax free zone in the neighbouring states.

3 new clusters

* Wire drawing

* Hand tools

* Tractor parts

Soft intervention consent for

* Oil expeller parts

* Printing and packaging cluster

Clusters and soft intervention for other parts of Punjab

* Mandi Gobindgarh gets sanction for soft intervention of steel re-rolling.

* Mukatsar gets agriculture cluster.

* Ferozpur also gets agriculture cluster.

* Hoshiarpur gets tractor parts cluster.

* Kapurthala gets foundry and general engineering goods cluster.

What is soft intervention?
Under soft intervention, the government gives grant up to Rs 22.25 lakh to build up awareness among cluster members. The cluster members can hold seminars, exhibitions and workshops to upgrade their knowledge. Participants will be benefited by improving their quality systems. The training programme will give exposure to the cluster actors on better technology, cost reduction and quality improvement.



Problems of sentry tax discussed
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 21
A meeting of the Punjab Tax Bar Association (PTBA) was held with Excise and Taxation Commissioner A Venu Parsad, Punjab ETC Manashvi Kumar, additional ETC LK Jain and AETC Baldeep Kaur.

During the meeting, KL Goyal and Ashok Juneja, chairman and president of PTBA, demanded that the Bars and Bench were a part of same machinery and command dignity and respect at par with department’s officials.

Advocates should be eligible to become chairman of VAT Tribunal (Punjab) also. All problems related to sentry tax were discussed and the High Court judgments were highlighted.

Secretary Varinder Sharma during the meeting said unauthorised persons and accountants should not be allowed to appear and act in any VAT proceedings. Vice-president Ajay Choudhary added that there is no need of audit for VAT or audit limit be increased from Rs 50 lakh to Rs 5 crore, which has not been increased from the last seven years.



Rupee falls to all-time low
Manav Mander
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 21
Rupee today fell to its lowest since hitting a record low against the dollar on May 31. This is the fourth consecutive day of drop in the value of rupee. The news came as a disappointment for the students who wish to study abroad, as now they need to pay more for fee and other facilities at the universities abroad.

“I have been waiting for the rupee to get strengthened, but it has again fallen to its lowest. My family had minimum resources and I cannot arrange more money. It seems now I have to cancel my plans of studying abroad and continue here only,” said Garry Gill, a student.

Meanwhile, for exporters, it came as a pleasant surprise. Since the exporters receive their payments in dollars, it is a boon time for them, as they can earn some extra bucks. Now that the rupee has fallen to its all-time low, we will be benefited, but many of our clients have started asking for discounts since rupee is getting weaker. So, we will not gain so much from the situation,” added Raman Vij, an exporter.



textile industry
R-TUFS extended for another year
Manav Mander
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 21
The restructured technology upgradation fund scheme (R-TUFS) for the textile sector, operational from April 28, 2011 to March 31, 2012, has been extended for one more year.

“It was the long pending demand of the textile industry to extend the R-TUFS scheme. It will prove to be a great help for the industry in upgrading its technology with the help of funds provided by the government. With the help of this scheme, the industry has been able to upgrade its technology and move towards automation,” said Vinod Thapar, chairman of Knitwear Club.

The R-TUFS for the textile sector will continue for 2012-13. As a consequence, the government will continue to issue UID numbers for new sanctions issued by the lending agencies on or after April 1, 2012.

With the help of the R-TUFS, the textile industry is trying to save itself by upgrading its technology and automating the processes, so that the requirement of labour is minimised. “We are happy that the scheme has been re-introduced,” added Thapar.

Jatin Sood, an exporter, said last year each textile segment, spinning or weaving, had a sector cap on the amount allocated under the R-TUFS. The sector cap would continue this year, too. This would boost investment in segments such as weaving, processing and technical textiles.



DMCH staff stage protest
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, June 21
The Dayanand Medical College and Hospital (DMCH) Employees’ Union held a protest dharna under the leadership of union general secretary Lakhbeer Singh and Nageshwar Singh, organising secretary of Bhartiya Mazdoor Sangh, in front of the DMCH gate here yesterday. Agitating members of the union alleged that leader of the DMCH Employees’ Union had been terminated in an illegal way.

Lakhbeer Singh said, “The demand notice is with the Labour Commissioner under Section 2-K of the Dispute Act, 1947, so service condition cannot change. But the management terminated the leader in the illegal way.”

The agitating leaders warned the management to solve the issue by holding a table talk.

officer speaks
}They gave us a demand notice on January 9. But it was in November last year when we asked Charandass, an employee of DMCH, to show us his pass certificate of class X. We also gave him reminders in December and January, but he did not produce. Then we checked it from the gazette of the Punjab School Education Board (PSEB), Mohali, and found that he had failed in class X. After this, we lodged a police complaint with the Punjab police. The police registered a case of fraud against him. It was only after this that we terminated him from the services. So, we did not take any illegal action against him~

Col (retd) JV Singh, DGM administration and HR, DMCH



pau notes
PAU students do well in competitive exams

Ludhiana: Dr Neelam Grewal, dean, College of Home Science (COHS), said that Nisha Verma and Kushagara Joshi of the departments of clothing and textiles and human development, respectively, have qualified Agricultural Research Service (ARS) main examination (home science), conducted by the Agricultural Scientists Recruitment Board (ASRB), New Delhi. Three students, namely, Deepika Bisht and Kavita Kachhawa of the department of family resource management and food and nutrition. She told that a former student of department of food and nutrition, Anupriya Singh, has topped the list of candidates, selected for the post of child development project officers, conducted by the Punjab Public Service Commission (PPSC), Patiala. A PhD (agricultural economics) student of the PAU, Amritpal Kaur, has qualified UGC-NET with JRF. Balwinder Kaur of department of home science extension and communication management has qualified UGC-NET with JRF.

PAU three months’ training course

The Punjab Agricultural University (PAU) would organise a three-month training course on "Integrated Crop Production" for the young farmers from August 1 to October 31. Giving Dr MS Gill, Director of Extension Education, said that the rural youths from across the Punjab (except Gurdaspur and Amritsar districts), in the age group of 20 to 40, with a matriculation qualification will be eligible for this training course. The candidates can collect the application form from the PAU Directorate of Extension Education. Informing that the last date for the submission of form is July 27, he told that the interview is slated for July 30 at PAU Kairon Kisan Ghar at 10 am. The candidates should bring their matriculation and age proof certificates during walk in interview. — TNS



Ludhiana Scan

Restrictions imposed

Ludhiana: Punjab State Pollution Control Board has imposed restrictions on the development works of the municipal council, Mandi Gobindgarh, which is one of the richest councils in the state, alleged council chief Dharampal Rao at a press conference here on Thursday. In distributed copies of letter No. 3143-44 dated June 11, addressed to the president and executive officer containing directions under Section 33-A of the water (Prevention and Control of Pollution) Act, 1974 amended in 1988-which empowers the Board to issue non-bailable warrants of the president and the executive officer. This letter has stalled the development works of the city for which tenders worth rupees 6.5 crore were to be opened on June 14 and Rs 3 crore called for June 19, which will create many problems for the residents for not fault of the council, added the council chief. When contacted, executive engineer of the Board, Pawan Garg, said that Mandi Gobindgarh town was declared one of the critically polluted areas of Punjab but no measures were taken to provide relief to the people of the area from pollution caused by sewage.

BJP ‘jail bharo andolan’

The BJP district president Parveen Bansal said here on Thursday the BJP was all geared up for tomorrow's "Jail Bharo Aandolan". He said the BJP workers would assemble near the mini-secretariat here in the morning and later court arrest. He also flayed the Centre for what he termed was a discrimination against the non-Congress ruled states.

Local MP criticises budget

Ludhiana MP, Manish Tewari, said that the budget presented here on Wednesday defies all financial logic as how this government is going to make up the revenue-expenditure gap of over Rs 3,000 crores. He said this is a deceitful ploy of this government not to impose any taxes in the budget but introduce these through backdoor in the time to come. He said that the budget has nothing for infrastructure development or welfare schemes.

Cultural programme

To honour the newly elected councillors of Ludhiana, a cultural programme was organised by Partap Colony Welfare Society in Model Gram here on Wednesday. Bharat Bhushan Ashu, MLA, was the chief guest.


An exhibition titled "New Vision" would be organised at Artmosphere Art Gallery here on Friday. Nine artists are going to put up their artworks at the exhibition.


Bhartiya Valmiki Dharam Samaj organised a meeting here on Thursday. The advisory board meeting was presided by Vijay Danav. They demanded that, a councillor from Dalit community should be appointed to the post of senior deputy mayor.

International Food Festival

A nine-day International food festival would be organised from Friday at a hotel here. Different cuisines would be served during the festival. — TNS



Gang of robbers busted, 4 arrested
Jaswant Shetra

Members of the robbers’ gang in police custody; and (right) weapons recovered from their possession in Raikot on Thursday.
Members of the robbers’ gang in police custody; and (right) weapons recovered from their possession in Raikot on Thursday. Tribune photographs

Jagraon, June 21
With the arrest of four persons, the Sudhar police claimed to have busted a gang of robbers, which was according to the police, responsible for various incidents of robbery and other crimes in the area during the recent past.

The four accused arrested by the police have been identified as Amandeep Singh, alias Amna, and Pardeep Singh of Rajoana Khurd village, Saneeep Singh, alias Sunny, and Jugraj Singh, alias Raja of Rajoana Kalan village. The police has also recovered some sharp-edged weapons, a .315 bore pistol, along with two live cartridges and a toy gun from their possession.

Giving details of the development during a press conference at Raikot today, DSP Kehar Singh Khehra revealed that an informer had passed on a secret information to the police that some suspicious persons carrying weapons have been seen at a deserted brick factory near Toose village.

“Following this, a police team lead by SHO Sudhar inspector Sandeep Kumar raided the said brick factory and arrested four persons while planning a robbery red-handed. The police has also recovered a pistol and some other dangerous weapons from their possession,” said Khehra.

When the accused were arrested, they were planning to execute a robbery at a liquor store of the area, he added.

According to Khehra, during the initial investigation, the accused have confessed of committing various robberies and other incidents in the area during the recent past. All accused are learnt to be chronic drug addicts and they chose the path of crime for buying drugs.

“With the busting of robbers gang, we hope that there will be some decline in the robbery incidents in this area in the future. We are further investigating the matter and some other revelations are also expected in coming days,” added Khehra.



Cricket gaining popularity in villages
Anil Datt/Mahesh Sharma

Ludhiana/Dehlon, June 21
Contrary to the common belief that villagers are more enthusiastic about promotion of rural sports, including kabaddi, bullock cart race and athletics, parents of students of schools in villages and suburban localities have started understanding the significance of cricket as an international game.

While children from lower middle and middle class families try to learn the game from their seniors at local grounds, those from flourishing clans attend special training centres at the nearby cities.

Investigations revealed that more and more children from rural and suburban localities had started learning the basics of cricket during past months.

Contrary to the earlier trend when stadiums and playgrounds situated in villages were packed with only players of the rural games, a large number of children are seen playing cricket in every ground. Students of lower classes showed keener interest in learning tips of cricket from senior players and at times teachers, too. Jasbir Singh and Paramdeep Singh Deepa, who had since been playing an active role in organising rural sports fairs in the area for over decades, said they had started sending their wards to the cricket training centres after realising the importance of the universality of the game.

“After realising that outstanding performance in rural sports enabled our children to shine at the local level and did little in getting them recognition at the international level, we have decided that our wards should prove their worth in international games like cricket,” said Singh and Deepa, adding that they would also sponsor children from poor families, too.

They have made special arrangement for sending learners to training centres of their choice at PAU and other playgrounds.

Acknowledging the trend, Amrik Singh Nagar, organisers of Nursery of Cricket Centre of Excellence, Ludhiana, said more than 50 per cent trainees enrolled with his organisation hailed from rural and suburban localities.

Appreciating that rural children were more disciplined, Nagar maintained that proper physical training and expert coaching in the game would help them bring laurels to their parents and localities at the international level.

Contrary to the common belief that villagers are more enthusiastic about promotion of rural sports, including kabaddi, bullock cart race and athletics, parents of students of schools in villages and suburban localities have started understanding the significance of cricket as an international game. While children from lower middle and middle class families try to learn the game from their seniors at local grounds, those from flourishing clans attend special training centres at the nearby cities



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