L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Robbery motive, says police
 Forex trader Sukhjinder Singh was strangled on August 17
Mohit Khanna
Tribune news Service

Ludhiana, August 19
Robbery was the motive behind the killing of 33-year-old Sukhjinder Singh, a Forex trader, the police said today. The investigation conducted so far has substantiated that the Forex trader was not a victim of personal rivalry.

Naveen Singla, Assistant Commissioner of Police (ACP- East), said it was not personal rivalry as the motive of the assailants was robbery.

The police is currently scanning the details of criminals, who have been outjail on bail. Besides, the police is also investigating whether the robbery was the handiwork of a new gang. The police was trying to find out whether the gang had committed a similar robbery elsewhere in the state.

The investigating officer, who was hoping to get the footage of assailants entering the office of Sukhjinder Singh from a close circuit television (CCTV) camera installed at the sweetmeat shop, was disappointed as the CCTV could not grab the pictures.

"We could not get anything form the CCTV installed at the sweetmeat shop. We will again scan through the recording of the CCTV camera. We are hoping to get some clue of the assailants, since it was a planned murder, the assailants might have done a recce of the place before striking," said Singla.

A police team today visited the area and questioned the residents about outsiders frequenting the area.

It was on August 17 that unidentified persons had entered the Forex office of Sukjhinder Singh located at Rahon Road. The assailants had strangled the victim and smashed the latter's head with a heavy sharp weapon. The victim was also stabbed. It is learnt that the accused fled with Rs 5 lakh cash and a laptop that was lying in the office.


Road caves-in near Old District Courts
Accident averted as a truck gets stuck in the damaged portion of the road
Kuldip Bhatia

Ludhiana, August 19
A major tragedy was averted when a portion of the road from the under-construction railway overbridge (erstwhile Lakkar Pul) side towards the Old District Courts Chowk caved-in and an overloaded truck plunged inside, with one side of the vehicle hanging precariously up in the air. The saving grace was that the mishap took place in the wee hours on Sunday when there was no vehicular traffic on that particular stretch of the otherwise busy road.

The truck being unloaded before being pulled out by a crane.
The truck being unloaded before being pulled out by a crane. Tribune photos: Himanshu Mahajan

According to information, one side of the truck bearing registration number PB-03J-1503 carrying cement blocks to an under-construction Mall near the Old Courts Chowk plunged deep into the ground when the road underneath gave way. As one side of the rear part of the truck went down into the caved in portion of the road, the other side of the vehicle was lifted up and it was balanced in a precarious manner.

It was only at the day break that the work for unloading the truck started. The police officials present at the spot said the vehicle stuck in the caved-in road would be pulled out by the evening. However, no formal complaint had been lodged by the truck driver or any one else till the filing of the report.

The police added that the truck might have suffered some damage which would be known only when the vehicle was pulled out. The driver and his companion escaped unhurt.

Officials of the engineering branch of the Municipal Corporation who were present at the spot, said work for filling up the caved-in portion and emergency repairs to make the road traffic-worthy would be taken up immediately after the truck is pulled out and shifted to another place. MPS Kalra, executive engineer (B and R) of the Municipal Corporation, said there was no apparent reason for the road to cave-in because no digging had been carried out nor was there any main sewer or waterline passing from under that particular portion of the road. "The movement of heavy machinery being used in the under construction mall, which is a short distance away, could be the only plausible reason for the road to cave," he added.



Online filing: Traders playing it safe
 Despite opposition, 2,000 registrations have already been done
Manav Mander
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 19
Despite the fact that a lot of noise has been made by traders regarding the e-biling started by the excise and taxation department, nearly 2,000 registrations have already been done with the department.

A senior official in the department said the traders understood the fact that they were left with no other option but to adopt the new system and were making registrations with the department. They were seeking the details of the online filing of the intra-state trade.

Under the new scheme, every online registration of goods purchase worth Rs 2 lakh or more within the state for general industry has to be registered online with the department, while for iron and steel industry, the limit is Rs 3 lakh.

Excise and taxation commissioner, A Venu Parsad said, “Those who do not adhere to the new system will be dealt with strictly. The traders should not wait for the rollback of the notification as it will not be done and they will have to file the details of their transactions online”.

‘August Struggle’ started on august 15

On August 15, the Punjab Pradesh Beopar Mandal had started “August Struggle” and presented memorandums to all MLAs and MPs of the ruling and opposition parties. Mandal president Amrit Lal Jain said the next step would be to gherao the ministers. Mohinder Aggarwal, general secretary of the mandal, said that the industry could not survive under such conditions and would be left with no other option but to change its base.



Residential plots: Allottees get golden chance
 Told to appear in person with documents to substantiate claims and take possession of plots
Kuldip Bhatia

Ludhiana, August 19
The Ludhiana Improvement Trust (LIT) has given another opportunity to allottees of residential plots on 475 acres at Shaheed Bhagat Singh Nagar on the Pakhowal Road here. The allottees have been asked to appear in person along with required documents to substantiate their claims and take possession of the plots. The plots were allotted 30 years ago.

Avtar Singh Azad, executive officer of the Trust, said in response to a public notice issued by the LIT, 56 allottees had appeared in person on August 16 out of the total 115 claimants. But some of them were not able to produce all the documents required to establish their claims and give possession of alternative plots to them.

He said the allottees, who could not mark their presence in the Trust office on August 16 and lodge their claim would get another chance.

"Taking a lenient view, all successful allottees of the residential plots of 125 square yards each which were covered under the City Centre Scheme will appear personally in the Trust office on August 30, 2012 along with their identity proof, attested photographs, original receipt of earnest money deposited in 1979 or 1982, original allotment letter issued by the LIT and required affidavit so that alternative plots can be given to them in the same scheme," Azad said.

He made it clear that cases of only those allottees would be considered for giving possession who had deposited earnest money in 1979 or 1982 and who could not take possession of the plots after the draw of lots because the land in question had come under the City Centre Scheme.

Those allottees who fail to appear personally in the Trust office on August 30 and produce all the required documents in support of their claims will forfeit their right to the plots and no further claims will be entertained after the said date, Azad added.

115 claimants

Only 56 allottees appeared in person on August 16 out of the total 115 claimants. But some were not able to produce all documents to establish their claims and give possession of alternative plots to them.



Permission must before availing free hospitality abroad
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 19
Availing free hospitality while on official tour in foreign countries will not be an easy task for government functionaries from now onwards. Making it a rule, the Home Ministry, Government of India, has written to the state governments that their (GOI) prior permission was must, if any government employee, while on official tour abroad, wanted to avail any local hospitality.

Wide its letter number 21022/58/97 to all the state governments, the ministry of Home Affairs, Government of India, has stated that it had come to the notice of the ministry that MLA/MP/Judge or government employees availed free hospitality on foreign shores and the hosts spent lavishly to please their VIP guests.

As per latest directions issued by the Ministry of Home Affairs, whosoever will go abroad on official tour and wants to avail the hospitality by NRIs or local population, will have to inform the ministry two weeks in advance. In addition, the person will also have to tell the approximate value of the hospitality to be availed in the Indian currency. In case, the government permits, only then the person (MP/MLA/Judge or employee) can avail the hospitality.

Welcoming the move, a senior official said the government had to take strict measures, else the persons enjoyed free hospitality in foreign countries, leaving a wrong impression about the country/countrymen. “The government has made it a rule, in case any one is found guilty, he may lose the job," said the official.



Two arrested with 10 kg opium in Khanna
Gurminder Singh Grewal

Khanna, August, 19
The Khanna police has claimed to have recovered 10-kg opium and arrested two persons. The accused have been identified as Rood Mal Saini and Kana Ram, both residents of Rajasthan. A case has been registered against them.

Inderbir Singh, SSP, Khanna, held a press conference in this connection at the district police office. He said that a police party of the Machhiwara police saw two persons roaming near the Garhi Wala Bridge at about 12.30am. The police stopped them and during the search conducted, 10 kg opium was recovered from both of them in the two bags they were carrying.

The SSP further said that they had brought the opium from Mandsour(MP) for sale in Punjab. He further said that cases under the NDPS Act were already pending against both of them at Morinda and Khrar police stations.

In another case, the SSP said that a police party of the CIA, Khanna, recovered 105 kg poppy husk from a person after getting a tip off. Two are still at large in this connection. The alleged accused has been identified as Gurcharan Singh, a resident of Ranwa village. The two accused at large have been identified as Bachittar Singh and Balwinder Singh, both are also residents of Ranwa. 



Shopkeepers exchange blows in police station
 Matter resolved; no complaint filed 
Mohit Khanna
Tribune news Service

Ludhiana, August 19
High-drama was witnessed at the Daresi police station here today when two shopkeepers along with their supporters allegedly entered the police station and exchanged blows.

It was free for all inside the police station as only two policemen were present when the incident took place. The matter was resolved after the local leaders rushed to the police station and separated the two groups.

It is learnt that Jaswinder Singh, Munshi of Daresi police station, and constable Makhan Singh, who tired to intervene in the matter were also manhandled by the two groups.

The incident took place this morning when two shopkeepers of Kucha Baili Ram located in the old city area fought over a petty issue. It is learnt that one of the shopkeeper along with his aides went to Daresi police station to lodge a complaint. Meanwhile, the opposite group also reached the police station and fought with each other.

"It was very unfortunate. It was not expected from such civilised businessmen that they would exchange blows inside the police station and take law and order in their hand," said Congress councillor Parminder Mehta.

On the other hand, Sanjeev Kapoor SHO, Daresi police station, clarified that no fight took place inside the police station.

"I have come to know that the two groups of shopkeepers were up in arms against each other over a petty issue. I have not yet received any complaint from either side," said Kapoor. 

Ugly incident
It was free for all inside the police station as only two policemen were present when the incident took place. The matter was resolved after the local leaders rushed to the police station and separated the two groups. 



People forced to drink muddy water
 Authorities in slumber, shirk responsibility, yet to resume water supply 
Our Correspondent

Sahnewal, August 19
It has been more than fifteen years since a water tank was erected by the Public Health Department to supply water to people in the town. But the water tank is lying in disuse as authorities failed to provide clean water to the residents of the town as they are compelled to drink contaminated water.

Even after 15 years, it seems that the concerned authorities have not woken up from slumber, and no one is ready to assume the responsibility of resuming water supply from the tank. According to the information, the Public Health Department had handed it over to the Nagar Panchayat and the latter had handed it over to the to the Water Supply and Sewerage Board, but no body took the initiative to start the water supply.

Moreover, the tank had been inaugurated several times. Earlier, former Congress minister Malkit Singh and the SAD minister Hira Singh Gabria had inaugurated it. Following them many political leaders had promised to resume the supply but the project could not take off as authorities concerned evaded the responsibility of supplying water.

"We do not know to which department this tank belongs, we just want the supply of clean drinking water and that too at the earliest", a resident of the town said.

"The Akali government boasts of developing the town but it has failed to provide a basic necessity of life," another resident added.

Meanwhile, water have accumulated around the tank and even if the supply resumes, it would not be clean and safe to drink.

Fuming over the authorities unsympathetic attitude, a resident said if the authorities could not provide safe and clean drinking water then why officers were glued to their chairs.

"Why Nagar Panchayat is ignoring the issue and failed to raise the issue before successive governments in the past? We are not hoping much from authorities now," a local resident added.

SDO, Punjab State Electricity Board, Sahnewal, said a meter was installed with the tank in the name of SDO, water works.

Moreover, due to delay in resuming supplies, the minimum rent for the tank has accumulated to almost Rs one lakh.

Ramesh Kumar Pappu said the responsibility of the water tank was given to the Sewerage Board by the Nagar Panchayat but SDO, Water Supply and Sewerage Board, answered that he was newly appointment, so did not know about the real ownership of the tank and it was responsibility of the Nagar Panchayat to look into the matter. It has been learnt from the sources that the inner pipes, which were installed years back, had been destroyed.



Finally, residents to get rid of sanitation woes
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, August 19
The residents of Gandhi Nagar and Ajit Nagar, localities, located on Raikot road, will soon get rid of the problem of choking sewerage water, which is flooding the streets of the localities. Jagraon Municipal Council has decided to lay new sewerage pipes in the localities to resolve the issue permanently.

A decision regarding this was taken during a meeting of senior officials of the Jagraon Municipal Council today. Prior to the meeting, a team of municipal council officials, which was lead by Executive Officer, Davinder Singh Toor, and president of the municipal council, Baldev Krishan Dhir, visited both the localities to take account of the situation.

According to Toor, during the meeting it was decided that the new sewerage pipes would be laid in the localities. He said the municipal council would call a general house meeting very soon to pass a resolution in this regard and after that tenders for laying the sewerage pipes would be floated and the work would start soon.

The residents of Gandhi Nagar and Ajit Nagar have been facing the problem of chocking sewerage for past many years. Although the residents were demanding for a permanent solution of the problem, yet the local municipal council had failed to respond to their demand.

Earlier, the residents had organised several protests against the local municipal council. The municipal council had installed a generator set to drain out the sewerage water from the area, but it could not reduce the resident’s plight.

But now, when the municipal council has decided to lay down new sewerage pipes, the residents of these localities have expressed contentment over the decision. The residents have appealed the municipal council to complete the project as soon as possible. 



Private sector only hope to check environmental degradation: Industrialist
Our Correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh, August 19
The traditional tree plantation drives during the observance of the Vanmahotsavs have failed to fetch desired results and now private sector have emerged as the last hope for checking deterioration of environment, Rajneesh Oswal, chairman and managing director of Shryans Group of Industries, said.

He said he had already directed the officials of his organisations to plant and nourish maximum number of trees at all vacant places, owned by the company. Admitting that the traditional tree plantation drives had failed to fetch desired results, Oswal suggested that vacant government land, including roadsides should be allocated to various industrialists and entrepreneurs for growing trees.

Councilors Kedar Kapila and Dilshad said they had urged developers of some colonies to plant saplings of a particular species along roads and streets of the settlements and Ficus colony and Amaltas colonies were named after species of trees, planted in these colonies.

The traditional sapling drives had been proved as mere lip service as majority of saplings failed due to lack of care. Reports by the office bearers of various units of government agencies, educational institutes and NGOs reveal that they had planted hundreds of saplings. The actual picture, however, is entirely different as stretches of land give an impression of a desert.

The authorities have failed to re-plant saplings at the places where trees were removed either deliberately or naturally.



Students urged to protect environment

Jagraon, August 19
The International Council of Ayurveda, Jagraon, organised a competition and workshop on environmental pollution at Government Senior Secondary School for Boys, Jagraon. The competition and workshop was organised under the guidelines of Punjab State Council for Science & Technology, Chandigarh, to generate awareness regarding the protection of environment.

Jagraon MLA, SR Kaler, was the chief guest during the occasion and inaugurated the workshop, which was attended by 150 students and 50 teachers. Declaring the beginning of the 'Green India Drive', Kaler urged the students to participate actively in the protection of environment and asked to plant more trees and save water.

In competition Anmol Singh Deol bagged the first position while Lovepreet Kaur and Jasleen Kaur stood second and third respectively. MLA Kaler also planted a sapling on the school premises. — OC



Teacher unions stage protests in city
Charanjit Singh Teja
Tribune news Service

Ludhiana, August 19
The city became the venue for two separate protests by teachers' unions today. A state-level protest was organised by 7,654 Teachers Union demanding regularisation of their posts at Vardhman Ground near Samrala Chowk.

In another protest, Teachers' Eligibility Test (TET) Pass Unemployed Teachers assembled at the Grain Market, Jalandhar Bypass, demanding employment.

Contractual teachers demonstrated against the government for not listening to their long-pending demand of regularising their posts. Union leaders alleged that despite several attempts, the Chief Minister did not meet them to listen to their grievances.

Gurwinder Ratan, president of the union said: "Punjab government has been playing tactics with teachers for three years since the date of appointment. Government is not serious about our demands. Our teachers are working on three times lesser salaries than regular teachers."

Paramjit Singh, district president of the union, said the teachers had been waiting for their salaries for the past six months.

He informed that the district administration had fixed a meeting with the Chief Minister on August 27. If he failed to address their demands, the union would organise another state-level protest rally on September 1 at the same venue, he said.

Teachers Eligibility Test Pass Unemployed Teachers also called off their protest rally after the education secretary assured them that 3,442 teachers would be recruited within a week and joining letters would be issued to 1,273 teachers in the next week. The department also assured the teachers that it would submit the proposal for the filling of 5,178 posts in the Punjab Cabinet meeting.



Rationalisation  policy
Future of teachers hangs in uncertainty as they wait for surplus list
Charanjit Singh Teja
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 19
Despite the implementation of rationalisation policy that has readjusted the student-teacher ratio in government schools; the education department is yet to release the list of surplus teachers.

The schools had received a message from the department on Friday that stated the list would be sent to them via an e-mail by Saturday evening. It instructed computer teachers to receive the list and apprise school heads of the names of teachers concerned.

Teachers awaited the surplus list that would have decided their future postings; however, the schools have not received the list till the filing of this report on Sunday evening.

Meanwhile, there is a rumor among teachers that the department would revert on its decision on rationalisation. Teachers felt it was difficult for the department to shift a huge number of teachers within one or two days.

Stating the reason behind the delay, District Education Officer Paramjit Kaur said: "We were supposed to send e-mails to schools on Saturday, but almost 50 schools failed to send us requisite information about the teachers. We can not send incomplete information to schools. We decided to take some more time to avoid any confusion."

The department would try to send the list by Monday evening, Paramjit Kaur said.



Need to create awareness about 'Neelkanth', says expert
 The farmer-friendly bird declining in number due to loss of habitat and natural feed
Charanjit Singh Teja
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 19
According to a popular myth in Punjab, a person is considered lucky on getting a glimpse of the bird "Neelkanth" (Indian Roller). These days, however, it is rare to see the bird, also called Blue Jay, in the state.
An Indian Roller bird sits on a branch outside an artificial nest in Ludhiana
An Indian Roller bird sits on a branch outside an artificial nest in Ludhiana. A tribune photograph

Dr Tejdeep Kaur Kler, an ornithologist from the zoology department at the Punjab Agricultural University, said there had been a sharp decline in the ratio of the Indian Roller, and at present, these birds comprised less than one per cent of the total bird population. Towards the end of the last century, it was a common sight on the fields with a ratio of 3.5 per cent, she said.

The expert revealed that there were two major causes of decline in the population of this bird specie. First, the destruction of habitat, as "Neelkanth" is very selective by nature and chooses high nesting sites. It requires a height of at least 15 metres for nesting on traditional trees like banyan, neem, mango, and peepal. Due to a decline in such mature trees, it is hard for Neelkanth to find natural cavities on trees. This bird, moreover, does not tolerate any other bird on the tree.

The other reason for decline is the decline in its feed. Indian Roller is an insectivore and feeds on agricultural insects and rodents. Due to the use of insecticides, there has been a decline in the number of insects.

To increase the population of the bird specie, the agricultural university is making rural masses aware of its natural habitat. Artificial nests are being introduced for this farmer-friendly bird by the department of zoology.

"People must know that how useful these birds are. We suggest them to protect the birds by making alternative arrangements," said Dr Kler.



Riding bikes no longer boys’ domain
Gurvinder Singh
Tribune News Service

Motorcycles have become a hot favourite with girls in Ludhiana. Ludhiana, August 19
They don't mind standing out and being different. These girls are out to prove gender equality with a vengeance in their own style. The vrooming, revving motorbikes have been considered as boys domain and thundering "bullet" the sign of masculinity, but city girls are increasingly snubbing aside the feminine scooters for motorbikes.

While some of the girls choose to make a style statement with bikes, others deliberately want to prove the winds of change when it comes to gender equality by driving the bikes. "If we can do everything that men can do in any field, why should riding motorbikes be restricted," says Anureet, a student.

Whereas girls earlier would suppress their desire to race the machines, the new generation girls rather believe in suppression of gender biases. Some like Dilpreet are fascinated with the machines. She drives the standard-sized Royal Enfield "bullets" to which even boys give a miss. "I always had a liking for a "bullet" and requested my father to get me one. And one day, to my delight, he gifted me one," beams Dilpreet.

So how do girls driving in the men's lane manage the extra-eyeballs they grab. "It was slightly awkward in the beginning, when all eyes would be on her for driving not just a motorbike but a bullet. But then, you get used to of the attention that you get," she says. "It is something that I love driving, so I don't care about what people think," she says.

Harvinder, another student, who insisted on getting a motorbike rather than a scooter, said when women can be pilots, and do everything men can, women driving motorbikes have just been something waiting to happen. "Plus, pragmatically speaking, motorbikes are more fun to drive. The change is going to be common in very short time. It feels good that I am a driver of change," she says. 



Companies all set to cash in on festive season
Manav Mander
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 19
The festive season is here. After Raksha Bandhan, it will be Durga puja followed by Diwali, therefore it is the time of the year when companies see a spurt in sales. So they launch new products and new advertising campaigns, and come out with attractive purchase schemes. Discounts and freebies will be the mantra for the consumer electronics companies.

"You have to give consumers a reason to shop. When the propensity to spend is low, a booster dose works," says a salesman at a consumer goods showroom.

The festive season last year had begun on a lacklustre note, but sales picked up in the last 15 days when companies stepped up their marketing and advertising campaigns.

Car makers have no option but to dole out offers to attract customers. They are giving insurance benefits, exchange bonus, cash discounts and freebies ranging from LED televisions to air-conditioners to sell their petrol variants. Hyundai and Honda are offering cash benefits up to Rs 40,000. The schemes are likely to be extended.

Car makers will also speed up launches to generate excitement and bring back consumers.

Car sales grow 15 to 20 per cent during the festive season and thus help car companies rationalise inventories. Given the market conditions, we are not expecting more than 5 to 10 per cent incremental sales during the festive season," said Girish Khanna, marketing manager of a car sales company.

For companies that sell information technology and communication hardware, the season will be a tough challenge. The depreciation in the rupee vis-ą-vis the dollar has made components expensive, yet they need to play the price card to tackle the weak consumer sentiment.

"Offers such as apps for free, free talktime and accessories at low rates have helped the company in the past, and could therefore be a key marketing initiative this season as well," said Suresh Kumar, owner of a mobile store at Ghumar Mandi.



Chemists' association to move court against State Drug Authority
Anupam Bhagria
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 19
The Punjab Chemists Association has decided to move the Punjab and Haryana High Court to sue the State Drug Authority in Punjab and Haryana High Court for putting a red stamp on licences while issuing and renewing those.

The authority has not issued licences for long.

General secretary of the association and president of the Ludhiana District Chemists Association Tikka Daleep Singh said,"A meeting was held under the presidentship of Surjit Mehta today. In the meeting, it was decided that the members would move the court to stop the State Drug Authority from putting the red stamp while issuing and renewing drug licences. The red stamp means that a licence holder cannot sell six specified

habit-forming drugs. However, the chemists who have old licences with them have not been put under the restriction, so they are selling these drugs too."

The general secretary said there should be a uniform policy for all chemists and there should be no red stamp on new licences or the renewed ones.

While GS Chawla, general secretary of the Ludhiana District Chemists Association, said, "The state government should allow all chemists to sell these drugs. If a doctor prescribes any of these drugs, a chemist with the red stamp on a licence, is not able to sell these. So there should be no stamp on the licences."

For long, the state government has not been issuing licences to the chemists. Chawla said,"We will move the High Court. A few years ago, the state government had issued a number of licences. And now it has made a policy that a licence is issued to one of the 5,000 chemists and after every five retail licences, one whole sale licence will be issued. With this new rule in place, there are many chemists who are still in queue and waiting for getting licences. The state government should start issuing licences to unemployed pharmacists."

Earlier, it was on April 5 when the Ludhiana District Chemist Association met Health Minister Madan Mohan to take up their demands with him.



Where there is a passion, there is a way
 Budding photographers come together to form club on World Photography Day
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 19
Photography clubs are pretty popular in schools and colleges, but these cease to exist for members after leaving the institutions. But some of the photography enthusiasts from the city have gotten together to let the hobby perpetuate as they formed an amateur photography club, Ludhiana Photography Enthusiasts Group, to mark the World Photography Day today.

Coming together from different parts of the city through Facebook and from different walks of life, they found a common connection with their passion for photography. Some of them are working professionals, students, industrialists.

The idea of coming together is to enjoy photography together and learn from one another, says Shikhar Sharma, a banker. Anybody photography enthusiast can join the group, he says. As members have a variety of equipment, they can share and learn from one another, says Sameer, a stock broker. Plus, the members have interest in different genres of photography, including macro, composition, wildlife, portrait photography. So members can gain from the expertise from other members, he says.

Some of the members have already been going for photo walks together on weekends. They start together, and walk on clicking photographs, in their own style, sharing and learning different styles and techniques.

Getting organised as a group of photographers will also help the city have a pool of lensmen as a resource, as some of them already are taking professional projects, says Gaurav Pal.

The budding photographers plan to have seminars and invite experts to become better at the art. "We intend to evolve as photographers, as we organise workshops and seminars to gain expertise in the field," says Shikhar. "It is going to be a common platform for the city to learn and share the art of photography," he says. 



Going the retro way
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 19
Madhubala, Raj Kapoor, Raj Kumar, Vijayntimala are again finding their way back into living rooms. The closest ever the stars of the yore could get to their fans. Not through television and posters, they are rather adding the quaint splendour to the cushion and covers this time.

Shalini, who is exhibiting her work at Wedding Asia, said, "Madhubala continues to rule, she is the most sought-after even now."

She said she has already made quite a good sale and the response had been great. "Strangely, rather than looking out of place, add that charisma to the modern settings as well and look superb," said Kunwar, a resident.

"I adore Madhubala. So many heroines have come and gone, but none of them are as beautiful as she was. She is an eternal beauty and would continue to remain the top heroine, both for her beauty and acting," said SK Sharma, a resident.



Panel formed to tide over dairy farmers' problems
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, August 19
To address the problems of dairy industry in Punjab, director, dairies, Punjab, has taken a decision through which each district will hold a monthly meeting with the farmers. The state government has constituted a District Development Dairy Core Committee which will be headed by the Additional Deputy Commissioner (D). Five dairy farmers will be chosen to bring forth the problems being faced by the community.

As per information, the core committee will comprise ADC (D), deputy director, dairies, general manager, milk plant, Lead Bank manager and manager of NABARD along with five dairy farmers.

Balkar Singh Grewal, a dairy farmer, said the dairy farmers had been demanding that their problems should be addressed by the government.

"We face many problems, including the increasing rates of fodder, diseases of animals, unavailability of certain vaccines at times, increasing milk prices by private players. Our whole business depends on such important issues which need to be addressed at the earliest. Through such monthly meetings, the government will be able to provide solutions and get farmers' feedback," said Grewal.

An official said the government was keen to uplift the dairy sector. "The lead bank manager or NABARD managers have been included in the committee to encourage farmers to adopt the industry. Their queries will be solved during the meetings only," said the official. 



All that glitters is ramp

Bollywood actress Huma Qureshi walks the ramp; and (right) a model showcases the creation of a designer during the Punjab International Fashion Week in Ludhiana.Ludhiana: It was time for city women to walk the ramp on the third day of Punjab International Fashion Week as they showcased the collection of city-based designers Sulakshana Mongia and Supriya Jain. Monapali also showcased their collection. Hailing from Kolkata, they presented hand-crafted embroidered motifs in "kantha". These were sans glitter. As "phulkari" is to Punjab, "kantha" is to Kolkata. Riyaz and Reshma Gangji presented their collection "The Truth Collection". Showstoppers for the day were Gangs of Wasseypur star Huma Qureshi.
Bollywood actress Huma Qureshi walks the ramp; and (right) a model showcases the creation of a designer during the Punjab International Fashion Week in Ludhiana. Tribune photos: Himanshu Mahajan 




400 saplings planted on campus

National Service Scheme wing of Guru Angad Dev Veterinary and Animal Sciences University organised a plantation drive on the College of Veterinary Science campus here today. Over 300 students and NSS volunteers took part in the drive that carried the slogan — My Earth My Duty. Vice-Chancellor Dr VK Taneja planted inaugural saplings of Ficus Lacor (Pilkan) and interacted with the NSS volunteers. 

Dr SS Hassan, the NSS programme coordinator, said they had set a target of planting 10,000 saplings under the drive that would continue till august 21 a various places. These include the College of Dairy Science and Technology, the College of Fisheries, and near the boundary as well as play grounds of government and public schools in Ludhiana. A total of 400 various plant saplings were planted by students on the campus. — TNS



Reporters’  Diary

Refrigerators tell a tale of financial well-being
Refrigerators tell a lot about the financial condition of a family. Surprised? Well, even I got acquainted with this fact only a few days back. Here goes the story... One of the friends of my husband came to visit us after a long time. In the morning, he thought of preparing tea for himself, but to his utter shock when he opened the refrigerator in the kitchen, he found it empty. There was no milk, no water, not a single fruit or vegetable. He thought his friend, i.e. my husband, was facing a financial crisis as there was not a single thing stored in the refrigerator. Thinking about our condition, he went back to bed and slept. When our domestic help arrived, he asked her if there was any milk in the house. The maid pointed towards the refrigerator in the lobby. He opened it and was pleased to see a well-stocked fridge with milk, eggs, bread, fruits, vegetables, cake, jam and juices. He was relieved that all was well with his friend's family. When he shared this incident with us, I and my husband could not stop laughing. Actually, we have two refrigerators. Since the old one had stopped working a few days back, I had shifted all the stuff into one refrigerator leaving the old refrigerator lying in the kitchen empty.

Bachelors, no please!
It is the toughest task for a bachelor to find rented accommodation in the city. Being a single in our society seems a curse, especially when prospective landlords put queries and give suggestions. During my hunt for accommodation recently, a kind and caring aunty denied me accommodation when I told her that I was single. She said, "I have a good accommodation but it is not for singles. First get married, and then come for a room.”€¯ I chuckled, “Aunty, I am searching for a girl for marriage too. I will soon come back.” She smiled and after some time when she became familiar with me, she asked about my caste and social status, and suggested to me some girls related to her. How strange! The woman is ready to suggest girls to a stranger, but is not ready to provide accommodation.

The English mania
Someone has rightly said — Be your real self; don't pose, else you will be exposed. The show-off culture in the industrial capital of state refuses to die. Many women, who are not well-versed in English, use such words at times that the listener gets a shock. Even when there is no need to express the "command" over the language, many women show their language skills to apparently leave a good impression. A woman at a kitty-party said, "It is such weather that one has to switch on the AC, otherwise there is lot of humanity (actually she wanted to say humidity)." Another woman chips in, "I was strange (she meant shocked) to see the snake in the garden." The woman sitting next to her whispered, "Do you think if we don't speak English, the friends will snap ties with us? If they will, then they are not the true friends!"

No meals for travellers
Although the railway station in the city happens to be among one of the biggest in the Ferozepur Division in terms of number of passengers and revenue generation, facilities being offered to the travellers leave much to be desired. While, there are many vends on platforms, selling snacks, hot and cold beverages, and other utility items; none serves meals or a proper breakfast. The refreshment rooms which used to serve meals, breakfast and other freshly cooked snacks to the public have remained closed for the last couple of months, and there are no signs of their opening in the immediate future. Although the much awaited fast food joint, constructed at the main entry gate of the railway station has opened, it is not within an easy reach. Those on board can not avail the facility as leaving the train and going to the eatery situated outside the railway station is practically not possible.

'Panga nahin changa'
Although the traffic police personnel keep trying their level best to streamline the traffic, here are some silent volunteers in the city too. One such volunteer is an autorickshaw driver who has written on the backside of his auto: "Panga nahin changa: Kaka keep to the left, nahin taan police sakha du best. Bye bye phir milange." The message did not just amuse readers but also conveyed a message on importance of traffic rules.

Contributed by Manav Mander, Charanjit Singh Teja, Shivani Bhakoo, Kuldip Bhatia, Anupam Bhagria



Ludhiana Scan

Book release
Ludhiana: A book by Harbhajan Dharna "Deeve Bal Deo" was released by the Punjabi Ghazal Manch, Punjab, at Punjabi Bhawan today. The book contains ghazals and poems and it is the third book by the author. Noted names in Punjabi literature, including Sardar Panchhi, NS Tasneem, Tarlochan Lochi, Dalvir Ludhianvi were present on the occasion.

College complex inaugurated
A nursing college complex, which is a part of Guru Teg Bahadur Sahib Charitable Hospital, was inaugurated at Paddi village today. The college will serve the needs of MSc and BSc nursing students, BSc post-basic nursing students and general nursing students. More than 500 students will study in the new nursing complex. The complex was inaugurated by MLA Darshan Singh Shiwalik. He also announced the grant of rupees five lakh for the college and also promised help in future.The inauguration ceremony was presided over by chairman of the trust, Bakshi Mohinder Singh, and his team. Principal of the institute, GK Walia, Administrative officer, Col MS Kang and Medical Superintendent, Dr RS Sodhi were also presenton the occasion.

The Shahi Imam tells children about the significance of Eid in Ludhiana on Sunday. Eid celebrations
The labour wing of the Shiromani Akali Dal distributed sweets and clothes to the Muslim females, who were lodged in jail on Tajpur road, on the eve of Eid. A team of the wing, lead by Abdul Shakoor Mangat, visited the jail to wish the inmates. The Jail Superintendent, Ravinder Loomba, and Deputy Superintendent, Damanjeet Walia, were present on the occasion.

THE FAITHFUL: The Shahi Imam tells children about the significance of Eid in Ludhiana on Sunday. Tribune Photo: Himanshu Mahajan

Sadbhavna Divas celebrated
The NSS volunteers of Guru Nanak Girls College celebrated Sadbhavna Divas today. They paid tributes to the late Prime Minister, Rajiv Gandhi, on his birth anniversary. A seminar was organised on the occasion, in which students discussed the importance of the day and took a pledge to promote communal harmony, peace and national integrity. Principal, Dr Charanjit Kaur Mahal, addressed the volunteers on the occasion. Later, a sadbhavna rally was organised by the NSS volunteers.

Green drive
"Aao Khilein Prakriti Ki Gaud Mein" is a project on tree plantation, which has been taken up by Upasana, a local resident. She has started this project with school children of Government Senior Secondary school, Kubba. She distributed 50 plants to the students and asked them to take care of the plants. She also formulated a team of contributors, who will contribute just Rs 1 daily. "The student who will take up maximum plantation will be awarded in the school's annual function," Principal Shashi Kiran Kanna said.

Blood donation camp
Doraha: A total of 60 women donors of Mata Bhago Dal donated blood at the Gurudwara Dhakki Sahib. Dedicated to Mata Sahib Kaur, the fourth blood donation camp was organised with the cooperation of DMC Hospital, Ludhiana. Organisers highlighted the significance of donating blood and saving precious lives. The children, volunteers of Mata Bhago dal, sang the hymns from the Sri Guru Granth Sahib and discussed about the menace of female foeticide and dowry. The Shiromani Sant Khalsa Gatka team demonstrated daredevil acts of the traditional martial art on the occasion. — TNS



Gold earrings snatched from woman
Jaswant Shetra

Jagraon, August 19
An unidentified person snatched gold earrings from a woman at her shop located at a stone's throw distance from the police station near Subhash Gate here today.

The woman, Surjit Kaur, said she was sitting in her shop in the absence of her son, when a turbaned man arrived there to purchase some grocery items. When she was packing the items mentioned in the list he had handed over to her, the man picked up a pack of soaps and asked her the price, she said. When she came forward to see the MRP, the man snatched the gold earrings she was wearing and fled towards the Gurdwara Mori Gate, Surjit Kaur alleged.

Although, her son and some other persons tried to chase down the accused on hearing her shouts, he managed to flee. On being informed by the shopkeepers, personnel from the police station situated near the shop visited the spot to take account of the situation.

Confirming the incident, Station House Officer Mohammad Jamil said the police had registered a case against the unidentified person on the complaint filed by the victim and the investigation is on. 



Family duped of Rs 10 lakh
Our Correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh, August 19
The police has booked six persons, including three women, under section 420, 406 and 120 B of IPC, for allegedly duping a family of Dhaipaie village on the pretext of sending their son abroad on matrimonial basis. No arrest has been made so far.

The accused were identified as Gagandeep Kaur, Gurmeet Kaur of Chhapar village, Nachhatar Singh and Paramjit Kaur of Jogimajra village and Dharminder Singh, Manpreet Kaur of Dulman village.

According to the FIR lodged at Jodhan police station, the accused had duped Baldev Singh of Dhaipaie village of Rs 10 lakh, which were given in lieu of sending his son Raminder Singh to Canada, by marrying Gagandeep Kaur, who according to the accused was unmarried and had cleared ILETS test.

A betrothal ceremony was organised on July 13, when the complainant had paid Rs 10 lakh as 'shagan' to Gagandeep Kaur in the presence of other members of both families.

It was only after the betrothal ceremony, the complainants came to know that Gagandeep Kaur was already married and she had not cleared ILETS test, and there were no chances of sending their son abroad. It also emerged that the accused had duped some families of Bhutta and Moga area earlier.

The police maintaining that the investigating team had received some vital clues in the case. SHO Rachhpal Singh Dhindsa said separate cases would be registered against the accused, in case, more victims lodge complains against them.



Hockey tourney
Tribune news Service

Ludhiana, August 19
Matches for Sahibzada Ajit Singh Hockey Champion Trophy will be organised by the Sports Council of Ludhiana at the newly laid AstroTurf in Punjab Agricultural University, Ludhiana, from October 10. The nine-day hockey extravaganza will have the biggest prize money of Rs 8.5 lakh and all matches will be played under floodlights of the PAU AstroTurf.

In the second edition of Sahibzada Ajit Singh Hockey Champion Trophy, a total of 12 teams in the men category and six in women category will be pitted against each other for total prize money of Rs 8.5 lakh, which is the highest prize money among all non-government sponsored tournaments of the country at present. The matches will be played on a league-cum-knockout basis.

The winner of the men category will get a whopping prize of Rs 3.5 lakh while the runners-up will get Rs 2 lakh as prize money. Similarly, in the women section, the winner will get a prize money of Rs 2 lakh.



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