L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Things go off track at city railway station
Gurvinder Singh
Tribune News Service

A garbage burning point near the foot overbridge at the Ludhiana railway station.

A garbage burning point near the foot overbridge at the Ludhiana railway station.
A garbage burning point near the foot overbridge at the Ludhiana railway station. Tribune photos: Himanshu Mahajan

Ludhiana, July 21
Ludhiana is increasingly being referred to as an upcoming metropolitan city, but the condition at the local railway station is not up to the mark. Residents complain of inadequate facilities at the station.

Shortage of security staff

Although metal detectors have been installed at the main entrance of the station, security personnel are not deputed at all the entrances. The outdated metal detector installed at the back entrance hardly beeps. With so many openings at the railway station, little check on security has made the station vulnerable to terror attacks. According to Station Superintendent RK Sharma, the absence of enough security at the entrances is due to a shortage of manpower. A CCTV camera has been installed, which is being operated by the Government Railway Police personnel.

Little fire safety

A few fire extinguishers have been kept at the station. Of them many are out of order. The lone fire extinguisher kept in the luggage room is nonfunctional. The condition of the extinguishers belies the claim that the fire extinguishers are checked regularly. "Despite the fact that Ludhiana is an industrial city and a large number of cargo and goods are sent through the railways, the Railways seem little prepared to deal with a fire," said Ishwinder, a businessman. Garbage is burnt inside the complex. "It is shocking to see that garbage is burnt right on the premises of the station. Not only does the exercise pollute the environment, but also poses a risk to fire safety," said a regular commuter.

No cleanliness

Railway tracks are littered with garbage and disposable glasses. Mosquitoes breed on the dirty water accumulated in the middle of the tracks. Stink rising from the tracks puts of commuters. Not only the tracks, but also the platforms remain unclean. Flies abound at the entrance on the side of the ticket counter. The walls at the front entrance have betel-leaf spits all over.

Poor seating arrangements

Enter the railway station at any time of the day, people can be seen sitting on the floor on the platforms. Nothing has been done over the years to increase the seating capacity at the station despite the number of passengers and commuters have increased. Long rows of seats should be installed at the station.

Passengers struggle to board the Indore-Jammu Tawi Express at Platform No 1; walls defaced by red 'paan' spit; lack of cleanliness.

Passengers struggle to board the Indore-Jammu Tawi Express at Platform No 1; walls defaced by red 'paan' spit; lack of cleanliness.
Passengers struggle to board the Indore-Jammu Tawi Express at Platform No 1; walls defaced by red 'paan' spit; lack of cleanliness. Tribune photos: Himanshu Mahajan

Sheds awaited

Corrugated sheets to be installed at some platforms have been awaited for months. Although the steel frames have been installed, the sheets are yet to be fixed. Except platform no. 1, which has the shed made of metal corrugated sheets, the platforms sheds have been made with asbestos sheets, which often leaks during rain.

Toilets in bad shape

Toilets are in a bad condition. "Although workers have been deployed to clean them, cleanliness is not up to the mark. The condition of toilets is very bad, and no proper maintenance is carried out," complained a passenger.

Cold food

Passengers complain that food sold on the platform is not warm enough many a time. The stall-owners complain the railway officials have banned the entry of gas cylinders at the station, and they have not been provided power points to use electrical plates to warm food. "I have to get the food prepared outside, and have bought a coal-based heater for warming food. But, heat doesn't last the whole day and making fresh food is not possible without proper arrangements for cooking food," complains a vendor.

Parking blues

There are hardly any sheds at the parking lots. During rain, the parking at the back of the station often gets waterlogged and the broken cobbled floor makes it difficult to park two-wheelers there. On top of that parking charges are exorbitant, complain residents. "For parking cars, we have to pay as much as Rs 200 per day," complains a resident. Sometimes, I return late, and have no option but to park my car here. 


Strange calls bug health dept
Anupam Bhagria
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 21
A man called on the health department control room helpline number to remove vegetable grown by his neighbour in a vacant plot. He expected the health authorities to help him out as greenery in the plot was inviting mosquitoes.

This is not an isolated case. Many city residents have been calling on the health department control room’s phone number to get rid of their troubles, other than health problems.

The health department has established a control room to facilitate people in case of outbreak of water, vector-borne diseases in the city. However, city residents are taking the health department for a ride and the staff at the control room has to attend strange calls.

An employee at the Civil Surgeon’s office said: “I usually receive calls like sewerage is choked in our colony. Please clean it. A person called on the control room number and said we have purchased many ice-creams from a shop but the shopkeeper didn't give us concession of Rs 10. Take action against him."

Civil Surgeon, Ludhiana, Dr Subhash Batta said: “We have a well-maintained register at the control room and I check it daily. It is ironical that we get such complaints form people which are in no way linked to the health department.”

He said the helpline number 0161-2444193 is there for residents and we would appreciate if they contact us only for health-related problems. 



Head constable beaten up
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 21
Surinder Singh, a head constable at the Basti Jodhewal police station, was beaten up by three miscreants late last night.

The incident took place when head constable Surinder Singh, a resident of New Nanda Colony, was going to Kailash Nagar late last night. On his way, he saw three persons, identified as Onkar Singh, Vicky Nepali and Jyoti, abusing some passers-by.

When the head constable asked the miscreants not to harass them, they allegedly started beating him up. The miscreants also snatched head constable’s mobile phone and Rs 5,000.

The police has registered a case under sections 186, 332, 353 and 382 of the IPC against the miscreants, who are still at large. 



Kidnapped children rescued, 2 arrested
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Pintu with his mother in Ludhiana on Saturday.
Pintu with his mother in Ludhiana on Saturday. Photo: Inderjeet Verma Another photo on P2

Ludhiana, July 21
The police has rescued two minors who were kidnapped from South City in Ayali village. The police has also arrested the couple who had allegedly kidnapped the children.

Suman (14) and her brother Akhilesh aka Pintu (6), were allegedly kidnapped by their neighbours on May 25. Joginder Singh Golu, ADCP and Satinder Pal Singh SHO said Ram Narain, the father of the children was a migrant labourer.

“The children were missing since May 25 and a complaint was lodged by their father. The neighbour couple — Pushpa and Surjit Kumar — were also missing and Ram Narain got suspicious. The police traced the mobile phone tower location of Surjit Kumar and arrested the couple along with the kidnapped children from Tarn Taran,” said Joginder Singh.

He said the couple has admitted to the crime. Their intension was to sell Suman to a tout and get an handsome amount while they wanted to make Pintu a daily-wage earner. 



Jhelum Express hits truck
Tragedy averted, all passengers safe, says RPF
Gurminder Singh Grewal

Khanna, July 21
A major tragedy was averted when a truck, which had got stuck in a railway track at Bhattian village, was hit by a train in the wee small hours today.

This accident took place when the driver of a Jammu to Pune-bound Jhelum Express noticed the truck, applied brakes but could not stop the train from hitting it. The train remained stationed at the local railway station for about two hours.

The police was informed about the accident by Karamjit Singh, who was on his way to a factory.

According to him, the truck driver enquired about a particular place from a villager, who told him that he was going in the wrong direction. Still the truck driver continued to drive along the railway track as the passage was closed. He tried to cross the railway track, but the truck got stuck in the process. The driver of the train could not spot the truck as its lights were off and hit it. The mangled remains of the truck were scattered all over the track.

Karamjit Singh said the truck driver fled from the spot as soon he saw the speeding train.

Arjun Singh of the Railway Police Force said, “All passengers are safe. A probe has been ordered and a case will be registered against the truck driver. The train left for the next destination after the track was cleared. 



Rakhis flood city markets
Tribune News Service

Rakhis based on the theme of Angry Bird game selling like hot cakes at a store in Ghumar Mandi.
Rakhis based on the theme of Angry Bird game selling like hot cakes at a store in Ghumar Mandi. A Tribune photograph

Ludhiana, July 21
With only 13 days left for Raksha Bandhan, markets are flooded with colourful rakhis for different age groups. Rakhis based on Spiderman, Pokemon, Angry Bird and other cartoon characters are popular with children, says Gurjeet Singh, an owner of a store in Ghumar Mandi.

Aanchal, a resident of Civil Lines, said her children were determined to buy rakhis based on cartoon characters. “My children are excited mainly because they would be able to tie such rakhis on their wrists,” she added.

Gift packs comprising rakhis, toffees and chocolates along with other assortments are also attracting the children the most. These are priced between Rs 25 and Rs 150, another store owner added. Rakhis made of artificial stones are popular among elders. Pre-packed “thalis” with rakhis, “tika” etc are also selling like hot cake this year, according to the store owner.

Ridhi said she brought a rakhi, which looked like a bracelet. “My brother got married last month, so from this year onwards I will start tying a rakhi on sister-in-law’s wrist also,” she added. 



PSEB book depot short of staff 
Board had chucked daily wagers out recently
Charanjit Singh Teja
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana July 21
After the Punjab School Education Board (PSEB) chucked daily wagers out a few days ago, one of its regional book depots is facing shortage of Class IV employees.

According to board officials, the depot is being run with the help of three persons. Out of them, a graduate is being forced to do clerical job. The other two helpers can’t carry out all required work.

Regional book depot circulates books through out the region. Thus, the two helpers keep on loading and unloading books from trucks on daily basis.

“The board refused to renew the contract of the daily-wage workers. Thus, it is tough for both of us to unload books and other materials from trucks. We need at least five pe5rsons to do the job,” a helper said.

The authorities have not only chucked the workers out of the Ludhiana depot a few days ago but from other stations as well. Moreover, the board authorities have reverted 35 workers to temporary postings.

Baljinder Singh, manager of the PSEB depot, said, “We have just three helpers and the major work is to unload and load the book on trucks, keep the books on racks and arrange them accordingly. The senior officials of the board should appoint more daily-wage workers at the depot.” 



Protest against liquor vend gets shriller
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 21
Residents along with students of the nearby school continued to stage dharna against the opening of the liquor vend in Street no 3 of Janakpuri today.

It’s widely rumored that the liquor contractor would take the help of the police for getting the vend opened. The residents seemed prepared for tackling such a situation, but no one turned up till the evening. People residing in the locality are up in arms against the contractor after receiving support of the school administration, gurdwara management committee and women.

Inder, a resident of Janakpuri, asked, “Why the government wants to open the liquor vend in residential area?”

“We can’t afford to allow opening of a liquor vend in our area as it would restrict the movement of women. Moreover, our children might get distracted,” Ravi, another resident, added.



Greed turning people criminals: Police
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 21
Impatience, short-temper, greed and personal rivalry are some of the reasons behind murders committed by near and dear ones in the city recently. If data available with the police are to be believed, then the murders committed by the family members have increased in the past six months as compared to those committed last year.

The data shows that from January 1, 2011, to June 1, 2011, at least 41 people have been murdered in the city. Recently, a resident of the Division Number 2 had poisoned her son.

In contrast to this, from January 1, 2012 to June 1, 2012, 36 people have been murdered in this industrial hub. Out of these, seven were committed by family members of the deceased. A brother had killed his sister in one such incident that took place in Ladhowal this year. A woman had strangulated her husband at Meharbaan. In another incident that took place in Sarabha Nagar, a man killed his wife and daughter-in-law. In Division Number 4, a maternal uncle had killed his nephew. A paternal uncle had killed his nephew in a fit of rage at Salemtabri. A case was registered against in the Sadar police station after a man killed his son.

In a latest incident, a woman has killed her father-in-law and step-daughter in an area falling under the Sarabha Nagar police station.

Expressing concern over this trend, Commissioner of Police Ishwar Singh said: “It is shocking to learn that the family members are killing near and dear ones. Property dispute, anger and impatience are some of the reasons behind murders. But, this trend is shocking and disturbing,” he added.



Farmer attributes success to PAU
Gets national recognition for his work in diversified agriculture
Charanjit Singh Teja
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 21
On his visit to the university, Gurcharan Singh Mann, who received "NG Ranga Farmer Award 2011" from the Indian Council of Agricultural Research recently, attributed his success to the guidance of the PAU experts. Mann, a progressive farmer of village Tungwali, Bathinda, was awarded in New Delhi on July 16 for work in diversified agriculture.

Mann attributed his success to the PAU experts for apprising him of the latest farm practices that helped him in diversifying his entire agriculture pattern. He has maintained regular contact with the Krishi Vigyan Kendra, Bathinda, since 1995. Practising scientific farming with the help of the PAU scientists on 42 acres of land, he cultivates cotton on 10 acres, vegetables on 2.5 acres, fruits on 10 acres, fodder on 2 acres, paddy on 3 acres, flowers on 1 acre, and forest trees on 2.5 acres, in addition to fish farming on 12 acres of land.

Talking about the agriculture practises, Mann said: "Most of our farmers want quick results in agriculture, which is not possible. We must follow the guidelines of experts to get a good profit."



Physical counselling for remaining seats
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 21
Keeping in view the difficulties faced by applicants for the BCom seats in the city colleges, the Online Admission Committee has decided to hold physical counselling for the remaining seats on July 26 and 27 at Guru Nanak Khalsa College for Women, Gujjarkhan Campus, Ludhiana.

Dr Ashwani Bhalla, advisor to the committee from Ludhiana, said all those students who had filled the online admission form but had not been allotted any college, or those who wanted to shift or had any other problem, could come for the counselling as per the schedule that would be soon notified on the website.

Dr Bhalla said now no more online list would be released, and all the remaining seats would be filled through physical counselling only.



Hospital performs rare surgery 
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 21
A rare heart surgery was performed on a 75-year-old man at a private hospital, wherein a hole in his heart was closed along with a bypass surgery.

Dr KC Mukherjee, a senior consultant of the department of cardiac surgery at the SPS Apollo Hospitals, where the surgery took place, said the patient had a severe chest pain and breathlessness when he came to the hospital. The case was diagnosed as a very rare and life-threatening complication caused by a decreased blood supply due to a heart attack, he said.

The only option for survival in these patients depends on a very high-risk surgical correction with a mortality rate as high as 60 per cent, Dr Mukherjee added.



Dengue: 2 more reported ill 
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 21
Two more patients are suspected to be suffering from dengue. District Epidemiologist Dr Puneet Juneja said: “Both patients were being treated at the Dayanand Medical College and Hospital.

One of them from Bathinda was discharged today. Another patient is from Varli Khurd village of the Ludhiana district. He is being treated at the DMCH. Their reports will come on Tuesday.”



Cops foil boy's attempt to flee home
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 21
Alert personnel of the Government Railway Police prevented a 12-year-old boy, who was in school uniform and carrying his bag, from boarding the train to Faizabad in Uttar Pradesh at the railway station here.

Having been scolded at home at Mandi Gobindgarh, the boy had decided to go to his grandparents' home in Faizabad. He had even bought ticket for Faizabad. A student of class VI, he had packed casuals in his school bag along with books.

He said instead of going to the school in the morning, he came to the station. When asked about his parents' phone number, he said they did not have any. He, however, said he had the mobile phone number of a classmate written on his scrapbook.

Head Constable Davinder Kumar said the boy's guardian was called and he was handed over to him.



Mechanic commits suicide in Janakpuri
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 21
Ramesh Kumar Johny (32), a resident of Street Number 3, Ganesh Nagar, Janakpuri, allegedly committed suicide under mysterious circumstances today afternoon.

SHO Shamsher Singh said Johny used to repair machines in Janakpuri. He and his family lived on the first floor of the house while the shop was located on the ground floor. The SHO said, “Johny ate lunch at around 2.30 pm and came to his shop. His wife and children went to sleep.”

The SHO added that after an hour, a customer came and knocked at the door as the shutter of the shop was closed. Johny’s wife came downstairs when he did not respond to repeated knocking at the door. She thought that Johny had gone out to get the cylinder refilled as he had told her so. But when he did not come out for long, she got worried and opened the shutter. She was shocked to see her husband hanging himself from the ceiling.

The police recovered a suicide note from the shop. He had stated that he was fed up and was committing suicide as he was mentally disturbed. The SHO said the body had been sent for the post-mortem examination. The couple had two children from the wedlock.



Bullock-cart race next Sunday
Our Correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh, July 21
The soul of rural sports in Punjab, bullock-cart race during Kilaraipur Sports Festival, which was banned by the administration five months ago will once again enthuse sports lovers at Grewal Sports Stadium next Sunday.

The association decided to organise the event after the Punjab and Haryana High Court gave green light while taking a decision on petitions filed by the Malwa-Doaba Bulls Welfare Association and Grewal Sports Association, Kilaraipur.

“We decided to organise the event after the court lifted the ban on bullock cart races,” said Paramjit Singh Grewal and Jasjit Singh Sunny, secretary and president of the Grewal Sports Association, respectively. They added that the court passed orders in our favor after it observed that the bullocks being used for the sports were looked after, well fed and not treated with cruelty.

While organisers are expecting nearly 200 bullocks to take part in the event, owners of more than 100 bullocks and calves have already gave their consent to take part in the mega event.

The owners and managers of the first 10 fastest runners would be felicitated with attractive prizes and cash awards worth Rs 80,000.

Most of the pair, participating in the event, runs at a speed of 33 to 35 kilometers per hour.



Ludhiana Scan
Memorial programme

Members of a ladies club perform Gujarati dance to celebrate “Teej” in Ludhiana.
Members of a ladies club perform Gujarati dance to celebrate “Teej” in Ludhiana. Tribune photo: Himanshu mahajan

Ludhiana: The Deputy Commissioner held a meeting in connection with a programme to be held in the memory of Master Karnail Singh Ishru here on Saturday. Akali leader Ranjit Singh Talwandi was also present at the meeting. The Deputy Commissioner said the programme would be organised at Nanakana Sahib Public Senior Secondary School.


The Rehri Farhi Union has welcomed the appointment of RK Verma as Municipal Commissioner. The president of the union, Krishana Papi, said this move of the Akali-BJP government is in the favour of poor vendors.


Ishwarjot Singh Cheema, former vice-president of the Punjab Youth Congress, has contested MP Manish Tewari's claim to Congress ticket from the Ludhiana seat for the 2014 Lok Sabha poll. Claiming that the race for the Congress ticket was on, he said the candidates were selected by the AICC after consultation with the Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee and the list required approval of the Congress Working Committee and finally the president of the Congress. Meanwhile, district Congress president Pawan Dewan claimed that Cheema was no longer a member of the Congress. However, his claim was disputed by Cheema.

SAD meeting

The Backward Classes wing of the Shiromani Akali Dal is going to organise a meeting at Royal Palace, near Ramgarh village, on the Chandigarh road on July 26. The members of the working committee, district president, general secretaries and the circle members will participate in this meeting.


Member of Parliament Manish Tewari has donated Rs 5 lakh for the construction of a building at the Shri Bala Ji Prem Ashram (orphanage). Baba Kulwant Bhalla received the cheque from Tewari. A number of senior Congress leaders were present on the occasion.

India Against Corruption

The local unit of the India Against Corruption announced that its members from Ludhiana will stage a dharna simultaneously when Team Anna starts its agitation at Jantra Mantra in New Delhi. This was stated by Vinod Jain, senior leader of India Against Corruption, after a meeting here on Saturday. — TNS



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