L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Railway staff hold up traffic
Oppose FDI in pension, term govt policies anti-people; commuters bear the brunt
Kuldip Bhatia

A traffic jam caused due to the protest in Ludhiana on Monday.
A traffic jam caused due to the protest in Ludhiana on Monday. Photos: Inderjeet Verma

Ludhiana, October 8
Commuters were once again at the receiving end as vehicular traffic on the Jagraon bridge and several roads around the busy traffic junction remained disrupted for more than two hours when railway employees, led by activists of the Northern Railwaymen Union (NRMU), held a protest against the FDI in pension and government policies.

Protesting railway employees marched towards the Jagraon bridge and squatted on the intersection near the statues of martyrs Bhagat Singh, Sukhdev and Rajguru. As a result, the movement of traffic on the old GT Road (NH-1), the elevated road and the Ludhiana-Ferozepur road (also a national highway) came to a halt from 11 am to 1 pm.

Hundreds of vehicles, including two-wheelers, auto-rickshaws and freight carriers, were stuck in the traffic snarl. Many people, including women and children, travelling by various modes of transport to the railway station through the Jagraon bridge had to walk on foot to catch their trains.

Senior police officials had a tough time persuading the protesting railway employees to disperse and allow the movement of vehicular traffic on the busy roads. Though the protesting railwaymen relented after about two hours, it took quite some time for the police to restore normal traffic and clear the intersection.

NRMU general secretary Daljit Singh, who led the protest, said with 49 per cent FDI in pension and enactment of the Pension Fund Regulatory Authority Bill, employees would lose their old-age pension cover and family pension. "Railway and other Central Government employees will not tolerate this gross injustice," he said.

On allowing the FDI in retail, the NRMU leader said this would have an adverse impact on some six crore retail traders and small shopkeepers. Daljit Singh criticised the government for the hike in the prices of diesel, cap on subsdised cooking gas cylinders, hike in the electricity tariff and imposition of property tax by the state government.

Activists of the All-India Loco Running Staff Association, the Jamhoori Kisan Sabha, the Textile Mazdoor Union and the Construction Workers Union also joined the protest and urged the working classes to launch a mass movement against the "anti-people and anti-poor" policies of the government.

Union's take

Northern Railwaymen Union general secretary Daljit Singh, who led the protest, said with 49 per cent FDI in pension and enactment of the Pension Fund Regulatory Authority Bill, employees would lose their old-age pension cover and family pension

Blocking traffic a routine affair

Obstructing vehicular traffic and squatting on busy intersections is becoming a routine rather than an exception in the mega city. Affected city residents are attributing this menace on the roads, which is assuming alarming proportions, to slack law enforcement and a common tendency of the authorities to bow down before the mob mentality. Several motorists caught in the traffic jam on the Jagraon bridge wanted the police and the administration to deal with such protests with an iron hand. "Those holding a vast majority of the people to ransom know that even if cases are registered against them, they will get away with these," said Parminder Singh, a businessman who was stuck in the traffic jam for over an hour.


One side of Sidhwan Canal bridge closed for traffic from today
Puneet Pal Singh Gill
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, October 8
One side of the Sidhwan Canal bridge on Ferozepur Road will be closed for vehicular traffic from tomorrow onwards. There will be some respite for residents of Sarabha Nagar and Bhai Randhir Singh Nagar as now the traffic will not be diverted towards these areas and instead one side of the road will be used for both "incoming and outgoing" traffic.

This side is being closed for the construction of an underpass for the Sidhwan Canal Expressway project. It will remain closed for three months and once it is complete, the other side of the road will also be closed for three months.

Earlier, the traffic police had decided that vehicular traffic going towards Mullanpur, Jagraon, Moga or Ferozepur will have to take a diversion. It was proposed that those going towards Mullanpur, Jagraon, Moga or Ferozepur will have to take a left turn opposite the PAU Gate No. 1.

After the traffic police diverted the traffic towards Sarabha Nagar and Bhai Randhir Singh Nagar areas, it led to traffic jams in these areas, leaving residents fuming. Both these localities are considered posh and that is why, the police decided to use one side of the road for traffic.

To help the police in managing traffic on this bridge, 15 to 20 personnel of Supreme Infrastructure, the company constructing the Sidhwan Canal Expressway project, have been trained in the Police Lines and they are now managing the traffic.

Pardeep Kumar, project manager of Supreme Infrastructure, said once one side of the bridge was closed, they would start construction work on the underpass. “We want to complete this project on time and for this purpose, we have to close the bridge from one side,” he said.

Speaking to The Tribune, Satvir Singh Atwal, Additional Deputy Commissioner of Police (Traffic), said afer the traffic was diverted towards Sarabha Nagar and Bhai Randhir Singh Nagar area on Saturday, there was traffic congestion in these areas.

“That is why we decided that one side of the Ferozepur Road can be used for both-way traffic as we have already widened it. Besides, we will also install information boards on the road so that people avoid travelling towards the Sidhwan Canal bridge. I urge city residents to take some alternative route while travelling towards Ferozepur to avoid traffic congestion on the bridge,” said ADCP Atwal. 



Employee accuses doc of sexual harassment 
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, October 8
Sarika (name changed), an employee of the Civil Hospital, Khanna, has alleged that a doctor at the Civil Hospital, Ludhiana, was "mentally and physically" harassing her for the past over seven years. Despite having submitted written complaints against the doctor, the health authorities had failed to take action against him, she alleged.

Accompanied by Satnam Singh Dhaliwal, chairman, and Ritu Pandit, president, Woman Justice and Equality, here, she submitted a complaint to Commissioner of Police Ishwar Singh seeking justice. Sarika alleged that Dr Pradeep Sharma, working as a dentist at the Civil Hospital, Ludhiana, was harassing her for the past many years. She alleged that she belonged to a backward class and the doctor had passed "casteist" remarks against her.

The complainant alleged that perturbed over Dr Sharma's behaviour, she had complained against him to the health authorities, following which Dr Sharma had tendered a written apology.

"Since Dr Sharma felt humiliated after I complained against him, he started taking revenge in one way or the other. He got me posted to Sangrur. However, I was called back to the Civil Hospital, Ludhiana. Dr Sharma again got me posted to Khanna to settle an old score using his influence. I am being penalised for no fault of mine," alleged Sarika.

Dr Pradeep Sharma has termed the allegations as baseless. "The woman served in the city for more than 18 yars and now she has been transferred. I had complained against her as she made several fictitious enteries. Besides, despite being subordinate, she misbehaves with me. If I had to exploit her, why would I make casteist remarks against her? Her statements are contradictory. The fact is that she wants to come back to Ludhiana. The matter should be probed to find the facts. I have not harassed her," said Dr Sharma.



MC plans to beautify city roundabouts
Team of Czech-based company holds meeting with municipal officials 
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, October 8
The Ludhiana Municipal Corporation plans to develop all roundabouts and roadsides in the city. A Czech-based company has shown interest in this project and a meeting in this regard was held here today.

A team of three officials from the company, Gestra Cz, comprising managing director Bohumil Vasicek, manager Martin Kvinar and architect Martin Snepok, today held an hour-long meeting with Mayor Harcharan Singh Gohalwaria, municipal commissioner Rakesh Kumar Verma and other senior MC officials at the Mayor’s camp office here.

The company officials told the MC officials that they had been studying the roundabouts in the city for the past few weeks and had prepared a presentation in this regard. They also showed a presentation regarding the beautification of the Fountain Chowk roundabout to the MC officials.

The MC asked the company to prepare a detailed project report in this regard.

Mayor Harcharan Singh Gohalwaria said the Czech company had met them regarding the beautification of the city roundabouts and roadsides. “I have told them that instead of preparing a presentation, they should prepare a detailed project report in this regard. The company has been asked to mention about the cost, technique involved and other such issues in the report and only after it submits the report, will we be able to discuss it in our general house meeting,” said the Mayor.

He said Ludhiana being the industrial hub of the state, they were planning to take along leading industrial houses of the city for the beautification of the roundabouts and roads. “Spending our funds for this purpose is not on the cards right now and if some industrial house or private company wants to develop and beautify the roundabouts, they can contact us,” said the Mayor.



Residents see red as coloniser pulls down boundary wall
Kuldip Bhatia

The boundary wall (left) that has been pulled down (right) by a developer to provide a passage to a proposed colony in Ludhiana.
The boundary wall (left) that has been pulled down (right) by a developer to provide a passage to a proposed colony in Ludhiana. A Tribune photograph

Ludhiana, October 8
In a bid to provide common passage to an unauthorised colony being developed in Guru Teg Bahadur Nagar near Jamalpur, a coloniser has pulled down the existing security wall of a public street and residents are also being threatened with dire consequences if they raise their voice against the intimidating tactics.

Residents of Street No. 3 of Guru Teg Bahadur Nagar are living under fear and have lost their peace of mind ever since certain property dealers and developers purchased a piece of land, measuring around 3,000 sq yards, alongside their lane, for carving out a colony.

According to Pawan Sharma, Kulwant Singh, Paramjit Singh and many other residents of the lane (which is a dead-end public street), the said developer, with the intention of providing a passage to the colony that was being carved out without any approval or licence from the regulatory authority, had pulled down the boundary wall that separated their lane from the adjoining piece of land.

"The developer and his henchmen had the audacity to demolish the wall on September 25 using a JCB machine. He also issued threats to the residents despite the fact that prior intimation was given to the Jamalpur police station about the mala fide intentions of the developer," said the residents.

The residents had also submitted representations to the Deputy Commissioner, the Commissioner of Police and officials of the Greater Ludhiana Area Development Authority as well as the municipal corporation demanding action against the unlawful activities of the developer. "However, none of the officials concerned listened to our pleas for timely action," said the affected residents.

Baljit Singh, Assistant Sub-Inspector at the Jamalpur police Station, said an application had been received from the residents. "Now that the wall separating the public street and the proposed colony has been demolished, we can take action against the culprits only on the intervention of the regulatory body (the GLADA or the MC), which has the authority to stop unauthorised development of a colony," he said.

Municipal Town Planner Raj Kumar and Assistant Town Planner of the area Monica said action would be initiated if the colony was being carved out unlawfully. "A team of officials of the building branch will visit the spot and take suitable action for violation of norms of colonisation and building regulations," they added.

The developer could not be contacted despite repeated attempts.



Teachers burn govt’s effigy, block traffic
Puneet Pal Singh Gill
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, October 8
Members of the Special Trainer Teachers’ Union, Ludhiana, today held a protest against the state government by burning its effigy outside the mini-secretariat. The teachers also blocked the intersection outside the mini-secretariat for a few minutes.

The teachers are demanding that they should not be relieved from their duties and should be allowed to continue their jobs.

Sukhwinder Singh, district president, Special Trainer Teachers’ Union, said the state government was planning to relieve them from their jobs from October 10. “We had convened a meeting in this regard today and it was decided that we should burn the state government’s effigy for holding protest against this decision of the state government,” he said.

He said he had come to know that the director general secondary education (DGSE) had issued verbal orders after which BPEO’s were told to relieve these teachers from their job. “Members of the association will be meeting the Chief Minister at his residence in Chandigarh on October 10. If our demands are not met, we will be forced to intensify our protest,” informed Sukhwinder Singh.

Solve problems

Paramjit Singh Mann, district president of the union, said the BDPO should take a lesson from the protest and should start solving problems of the teachers. “Else we will hold another protest outside his office again,” he said.

No service book

Members of the ETT Teachers’ Union, Punjab, on Monday held a protest outside the BDPO office. Union block president Gurpreet Singh said the teachers had never got their monthly salary on time. “Neither did we get first installment (40 per cent) nor the second installment (30 per cent) of the pay commission dues. The state of affairs is such that even the service book of the teachers has not been prepared yet,” said Gurpreet Singh.



Traders go on fast against e-billing
Tribune Reporters

Mandi Gobindgarh, October 8
The five members of the steel trade and industrial associations commenced their fast to protest against the e-billing, imposed by the Excise & Taxation Department, Punjab. While two members are from the Furnace Association, three are from the Iron Scrap Traders' Association. Earlier, the associations had threatened to resort to fast if their demands were not met.

K K Jindal of GSCCI said the industry was ready to cooperate with the government on the issue of VAT revenue, but the e-billing was not acceptable. Raj Jindal, another leader, stressed that the industry should be treated on par with the others sectors of economy. He requested that e-billing should be deferred till the GST was made effective next year.

Induction furnace units reduce work hours

Ludhiana: As traders of Mandi Gobindgarh went on indefinite hunger strike against the e-trip system, introduced by the Excise and Taxation Department, today, Ludhiana-based units continue to work for 12 hours. The induction furnace units of the city, which use to work for 24 hours have reduced their working hours to 12 hours against the e-trip system.

The traders said since 95 per cent of the e-filing was done by the advocates or part time accountants, giving them password for all transaction would not be safe for the trade and industry. KK Garg, president of Ludhiana Induction Furnace Association, said the induction furnace owners were strictly against the introduction of e-trip system in Punjab and would continue to struggle till the government rolls it back.



Door-to-door collection of garbage
Pvt collectors up in arms against A2Z
Puneet Pal Singh Gill
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, October 8
Up in arms against A2Z Waste Management Ludhiana Limited, a delegation of 100 private garbage collectors today held a meeting with MC Commissioner Rakesh Kumar Verma at the MC’s Zone A office at the Mata Rani Chowk.

The garbage collectors demanded that the company should be stopped from door-to-door collection of garbage and if the company hires them, a monthly salary of Rs 15,000 should be paid to them.

The private garbage collectors had gathered under the aegis of Valmiki Samaj Bachao Aandolan (VSBA) at the Zone A building.

Ever since A2Z Waste Management Ludhiana Limited started door-to-door collection of garbage from ward numbers 68 and 69 of the city, the private garbage collectors and members of the VSBA have been opposing it.

During today’s meeting, members of the VSBA raised several issues in front of the MC Commissioner.

VSBA chairman Surinder Kalyan stated that the MC Commissioner has promised that soon a meeting will be organised between them.

“We will not allow the company to carry door-to-door collection of garbage in the city. And if officials of the company want to hire our services, they will have to pay a minimum salary of Rs 15,000 per month, else we will continue our protest,” he said.

MC Commissioner Rakesh Kumar Verma said all issues regarding the demands of private garbage collectors will be discussed at a meeting to be held soon.



Surgery: Woman accuses doctor of negligence
Charanjit Singh Teja
Tribune News Service

Geeta Rani with her relatives after meeting the Commissioner of Police in Ludhiana on Monday.
Geeta Rani with her relatives after meeting the Commissioner of Police in Ludhiana on Monday. Photo: Inderjeet Verma

Ludhiana, October 8
Geeta, a resident of the city, alleged negligence by a gynaecologist during a surgery, claming that she had been facing severe health problems after the surgery. Geeta Dewan, also a singer, alleged that her uterus and ovaries were removed during the surgery at Dr Rama Sofat Hospital without diagnosing properly.

The victim with her family members and activists of three NGOs met the Commissioner of Police and filed a complaint against the doctor couple.

In her complaint, Geeta alleged, “I was admitted to Dr Rama Sofat Hospital on July 7, 2008. The doctor told us the next morning that a minor operation is required. But they removed the uterus and ovaries without informing us. I was not suffering from any disease, as nothing came in tests done at the laboratory. So, I have failed to understand as why they removed my ovaries and uterus. After the operation, my health deteriorated and the surgery ruined my life and I was not in a condition to file a report earlier.”

When Dr Amit Sofat was contacted, he said, “The patient has been misguided. She was operated with her consent. We have removed her ovaries after conducting all required tests. We have all reports of the tests, which show that there were pre-cancer symptoms. She had stayed in the hospital for seven days after the operation and there was no complication during that period.”

Meanwhile, Commissioner of Police Ishwar Singh gave Geeta and her husband Deepak Dewan an assurance to set up a panel of doctors to inquire in the matter and submit a report of the same to him.



City lacks open space to play
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, October 8
With the city expanding farther, it is also eating into open areas in the interiors of the city with little space for playgrounds.

Cricket clubs with the passion for the game are left with no choice, but to pay for these rare empty spaces like parks, plots and school grounds.

Clubs like Shakti Nagar Cricket Club, Darshan Cricket Club, Hunters, BBF Cricket Club and Ravinder Ghora Club have little choice but to pay for these spaces.

Most of these clubs have paid for the rare spaces in many of the congested city areas.

Members of the clubs have to make monthly monetary contribution, which is paid to owners of these spaces. Some of the clubs also seek sponsorships for these payments.

“It should be the administration that should be providing facilities for residents to play. On the contrary, it is the players and children interested in playing, who have to pay, just for the space for playing, let alone the facilities. How do you expect, the sports in the city to prosper, when we don't even have adequate space to play and have to pay for playing in private fields?” asked Aman, a member of the Darshan Cricket Club.

“Even Sachin Tendulkar, the world’s most famous cricketer, started playing in a park to begin with. But if there are no parks or grounds, how do you expect children to come forward and play,” says Sandeep, a resident.

“In India, already parents are not inclined towards encouraging their wards for sports, how do you expect them to pay just for the space to play?” asked another member from the club.

The sports clubs should be established in every ward. It should be the responsibility of every councillor to create at least one big park with the sports facilities in their ward for the development and encouragement of sports. This is paramount not only to encourage sports but also for healthy and progressive youth, said Aditya, a student.



Drug peddlers target students
Jaswant Shetra

Jagraon, October 8
The time has gone when chemist shops were involved in the sale of habit forming drugs. Due to the strictness of the police and the Health Department majority of the drug stores have given up the business. Meanwhile, taking advantage of the situation, some criminal-minded people have started selling habit forming drugs. Moreover, several youths, who are drug addicts, are getting getting involved in the illegal trade of habit forming drugs.

There are many localities in the town where the sale of these drugs has been going on unchecked. The most prominent areas where these drugs are being soled include Bagh Kheta Ram Colony, Agwar Lopon, situated on outskirts of Jagraon. The slum areas have become notorious for selling the drugs.

the banned drugs such as cough syrups, including Rexcof, Recodex and tablets like Restyl, Alprex, Carrysoma, Parvon Spas, Spasmo Proxyvon are quite popular among youngsters and the sale of these drugs is going on unchecked. A large number of drug addicts are also getting hooked to the sale of drugs to earn quick bucks. In the absence of strict monitoring, the sale of habit forming drugs is on the rise near the educational institutes of the town and the main target are students.

When contacted, DSP Jagraon Surinder Kumar, said the police was doing its best to curb the menace. "But such kind of persons often manage to escape as it is difficult for the police to monitor such kind of persons due to the lack of proper record," he said.

"On average we are arresting two-three persons, involved in illegal drug peddling, everyday. Whenever we get any information about such activity, we always take strict action," he added.



Delay in bringing bodies; kin worried

Doraha, October 8
The delay in bringing the bodies of the mother and her three children from Belgium to their native village has made the kin anxious. The mother and the children were murdered last week. "The Punjab Government had given the assurance that it would make arrangements for bringing the bodies to india as soon as possible but the delay is now giving ussleepless nights. We are in constant touch with the government officials but we are still waiting for their nod," said Jang Singh, the head of the family.

Gurpal Singh, the cousin of Jasvir who stays in Belgium, said the authorities in Belgium were not sure about the exact date on which the bodies would be sent to India.

Local MLA Charanjit Singh Atwal had come to sympathise with us and gave us the assurance that the government would

make all efforts for brining the bodies to India, a relative said. " As the time is passing and our relatives here and abroad are making rounds of the embassies, our strength is going down. We urge the government to help us as we have no other door to approach," said one of the relatives. — OC



Upgrade sub-tehsil office to subdivision level, demand residents
Our correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh, October 8
Feeling isolated both administratively and politically after the reorganisation of assembly and parliamentary constituencies, the residents of the town have demanded to upgrade the local sub-tehsil office to subdivision level.

The residents said the town, which was situated on the border of Sangrur and Ludhiana districts, was made sub-tehsil four decades ago and the Block Development Office was later established at Amarpura. They said a circle police officer was also posted here but all these offices were later shifted to Malerkotla.

The situation worsened when the government incorporated some area of the town and surrounding villages in Fatehgarh Sahib parliamentary constituency and newly constituted Amargarh assembly segment due to which leaders of various political parties started ignoring the development of the area.

Accusing the successive governments of ignoring the genuine demands of the residents, Chapra and Phallewal, local leaders of the SAD, rued that leaders could not even maintain the name of the block in administrative records. "The authorities did not accede to restoring name of block as Ahmedgarh block. It is rather called Malerkotla II," lamented Phallewal and Chapra.

Jatinder Kumar Bholla, former president of the Municipal Council, regretted that it was shameful for the leaders and residents of the area that Amargarh village with less population than Ahmedgarh was made assembly constituency.

Interestingly, the Deputy Commissioner, Sangrur, and SDM Malerkotla look after the civil administration and the office of the DSP, Amargarh, is accommodated temporarily in a rented building at Malerkotla. 



Traders confused over form to be filled
Manav Mander
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, October 8
The Excise and Taxation Department has levied annual processing fee on traders with VAT number and will be collecting Rs 800 annually.

Although the traders have been notified to pay the annual processing charges for the financial year 2012-13 on or before October 30, the traders are still not clear about which form to fill.

“It is mandatory for every trader to pay the processing fee before October 30. The taxable persons not required to file returns during October shall also pay this annual processing fee within the stipulated time,” said A Venu Parsad, Excise and Taxation Commissioner.

The annual processing fee is to be paid in Challan Form VAT-2. This is to be filled in column 2 (e) of the Challan Form VAT-2 under the head “other deposits” and should be specified as “Processing fee” for the financial year 2012-13. The amount of processing fee shall not be added in column 2 (f) of the Challan Form VAT-2 meant for the purpose of deduction of the Punjab municipal fund, said Jatinder Khurana, a tax professional.

The entire proceeds of the processing fee shall be credited to the head of account 0040-taxes on sales, trade etc-102 state VAT, he added.

Although the department has issued a notification for the traders to pay the annual processing fee, it has failed to make the facts clear to the traders.

“I am unable to understand where to fill the annual processing charges in the form. Now, I will go to the department to make the things clear,” said Jagjeevan Singh, a trader.

Punjab vat act

Every taxable person registered under the Punjab VAT Act, 2005, including commission agents, brick-kiln owners and dhaba owners, shall have to pay the annual processing fee of Rs 800 in October every year. The proof of such payment shall be attached along with the quarterly return.



Minor fire at shopping complex
Puneet Pal Singh Gill
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, October 8
A minor fire broke out at a shopping complex opposite Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL) telephone exchange at the Bharat Nagar Chowk this afternoon.

The fire began from the electricity board installed near the stairs of the building at around 12:30 pm and was doused in 15-20 minutes by using fire extinguishers installed in the building. Short circuit is believed to be the reason behind the incident.

Fire brigade officials informed that they had received a call from an employee of the BSNL exchange.

“But when we were about to dispatch our team, we got a call from the same person who stated that they have been able to douse the flames,” informed the fire brigade officials.

Parveen Kumar, who owns an office in this building, informed that the fire incident took place due to a short circuit. “But we managed to douse the flames and there was no loss,” he stated.



Signature campaign against female foeticide
Puneet Pal Singh Gill
Tribune News Service

Mayor Harcharan Singh Gohalwaria (in blue shirt) launches a signature campaign against female foeticide in Ludhiana on Monday.
Mayor Harcharan Singh Gohalwaria (in blue shirt) launches a signature campaign against female foeticide in Ludhiana on Monday. A Tribune photograph

Ludhiana, October 8
For making residents of the city aware about female foeticide, a religious body has come forward and has started a signature campaign today.

This signature campaign was launched by the first citizen of the city, Mayor Harcharan Singh Gohalwaria at Shri Geeta Mandir in Vikas Nagar, Pakhowal Road.

As a part of the campaign, a big board has been installed on the mandir premises where the residents can come and sign in support of curbing this social evil.

Mayor Harcharan Singh Gohalwaria said even though the ground reality had improved a bit, the male-female ratio in the state as well as the city needed to be improved.

“While launching this signature campaign, I have decided that I will urge all 75 municipal councillors to make the residents of their respective areas aware about this social evil,” he said.

Area councillor Tanvir Singh Dhaliwal said he was a proud father of a girl child. “All of us need to work wholeheartedly in curbing the social evil,” he said.

Pardeep Dhall, general secretary of Shri Geeta Mandir Committee, said on one side, all of us perform “kanjak poojan” during Navratras, while on the other side, our society indulges in such social evils.

“To make people aware that boys and girls are equal, we have started this signature campaign,” he said.



Traders irked over department’s decision
Told to submit pictures for getting VAT registration number
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, October 8
The pre-requisite of submitting pictures for getting a VAT registration number is irking traders.

The excise and taxation department demanded that anybody who wants a VAT registration has to give the picture of the board, mentioning the name of the firm, which is placed or hung outside the unit. In addition to this, the department also demanded the picture of the owner of the firm, sitting on the premises along with stock.

“There is no rule in the VAT Act, which makes it compulsory to give such pictures for getting a VAT registration number. Only passport size picture is required for getting a VAT number,” said Jatinder Khurana, president of Taxation Young Lawyers’ Association.

Monish, a trader, while putting forward his problem said he had changed the address of his unit and when he went to the department to get the address changed, he was asked to give the pictures of his unit along with the stock.

“I am not aware if there is any such pre-requisite. I have already given the pictures of my unit to the department,” he said.



One more tests positive for swine flu

Ludhiana, October 8
Jasbir Singh, a resident of Patiala, admitted at the Dayanand Medical College and Hospital (DMCH), has been confirmed to be a positive case of H1N1 (swine flu).

According to district epidemiologist, Dr Puneet Juneja, “Two more patients have been found to be suspected cases of dengue. One of the suspected is Amritpal from Haryana and another one is Anu from Ludhiana.”

With this, the state has received 13 swine flu patients in this season. — TNS



Ludhiana Scan 
Lecture on wildlife conservation

CAPE- India, an NGO, organised a lecture on wildlife conservation and saving house sparrow during a camp at Mahavir Bhawan, Civil Lines, Ludhiana, on Monday. The camp was for the children of 6 to 16 age group. The camp was held under the patronage of Acharya Dr Shiv Muni and Shirish Muni. More than 150 participated in the camp. Dr Sandeep Kumar Jain and Dr Rakesh Jain were the main speakers.

Govt to auction sand soon

Mahesh Inder Singh Grewal, advisor to the Chief Minister, assured people that the government was aware of difficulties, being faced by people, regarding the shortage of sand and it would be auctioned soon. He said the Punjab Government had decided to auction sand under the mining policy on September 25 but the Punjab and Haryana High Court had prohibited the auction. He said that the auction would be held soon after the prohibition orders were repealed.

Development drive

Chunni Lal Bhagat, Minister of Local Bodies and Medical Education and Research, Punjab, on Monday announced that for the overall development of the 142 cities of the state, the government has earmarked Rs 8,635 crore under different projects. "Under these projects all cities of the state will have potable water supply, sewerage, good-quality roads, streetlights, sewerage treatment plans in upcoming three years," he said. Chunni Lal Bhagat was in the city to attend a function, organised by the All-India Bhagat Sabha, Ludhiana.

Joy of giving

Students distribute eatables among slum children in Dugri on Monday.Students of Cherubs The Preschool, Dugri, distributed samosas, biscuits and chocolates to the children living in slum areas on Monday.The Joy of Giving Week is a "festival of giving" that aims to bring together Indians all across the country and abroad, says Ruchika Arora, principle of the schools. “This was truly a rewarding project, which has touched the lives of many children and was a wonderful way to teach the students about the joy and satisfaction of giving," she said.

Students distribute eatables among slum children in Dugri on Monday. A Tribune Photograph

Artificial limb distribution camp

A free artificial limb distribution camp was organised at Viklang Sahayta Kendra, Rishi Nagar, by the Bharat Vikas Parishad on Monday. 32 persons were given free artificial limbs, including artificial legs, callipers besides tricycles and hearing machines. Sooraj Jyoti, president, Bharat Vikas Parishad Charitable Trust, said more than 38,000 artificial limbs had been distributed by the organisation.

Probe demanded

Gulchain Singh Charak, member of Congress working committee, Punjab, expressed serious concern about the blast that occurred at a scrap dealer' s godown at Samrala Chowk, Ludhiana, recently. Three persons were killed and five got injured during the blast. He urged the Punjab Government to provide adequate financial relief to the families of the victims. he said it was quite disturbing that a highly explosive device exploded in the godown. He urged the authorities to enquire how the device reached there because Punjab had already passed through militancy due to which many precious lives were lost and the peace was restored only after proffering great sacrifices. He said:"We are going to meet the Home Minister of India in this regard. I also appeal to the people of Punjab to be vigilant and maintain age old tradition of brotherhood." He urged the state government to take all necessary measures for the safety and security of the people."

Eye check-up camp held

An eye check-up camp was organised by Lions Club (Sutlej branch) at Swami Vivekanand Saraswati Gurukul, Haibowal Kalan, Ludiana, on Monday. 25 cataract patients were operated upon free of cost and colored Phaco lens were implanted. 14 patients will be operated upon in the Civil Hospital, Ludhiana.

J&K Bank shares

India's leading stock market the Bombay Stock Exchange (BSE) announced the inclusion of Jammu and Kashmir Bank in group A, which means the shares of the bank are now among top ranked shares. The decision came when the bank's share hit an all-time high of Rs 1026 at the BSE and Rs 1033 at the NSE yesterday. Sand mines to auction soon MaheshInder Singh Grewal, advisor to chief minister said that the government is well aware of the sand problem being faced by the people and the problem will be soon ended by auctioning the sand mines. Punjab government had fixed September 25 as the date for auctioning the sand mines but had to be stopped due to the ban impsoed by Punjab and Haryana High Court. "As soon as the ban is uplifted the mines will be auctioned, giving relief to the people," he said.

Government to strengthen road network

PWD Minister Sharanjit Singh Dhillon on Monday said that all main roads of the state should be four-laned and the road network of the state would be strengthened in the next three years. He said this after taking the meeting of chief engineers of the PWD. "We are already carrying out a survey in this regard," he said. — TNS



Two convicted in cheque-bounce cases
Our Legal Correspondent

The ETT Teachers Union protests outside the BDPO’s office in Ludhiana on Monday.
The ETT Teachers Union protests outside the BDPO’s office in Ludhiana on Monday. Tribune photographs

Ludhiana, October 8
Judicial Magistrate Jagmilap Singh Khushdil has convicted Manohar Lal and his son Sakun Kumar of Miller Ganj, Ludhiana, in two cheque bounce cases. They have been sentenced to undergo an imprisonment of one year.

The court also ordered them to pay a compensation of Rs 10,000 each. However, the court acquitted co-accused, Neelam Rani, wife of Manohar Lal. She had claimed that her signatures were forged on the cheque. In support of her contentions, she was also examined by a handwriting expert and the expert had given his report in favour of Neelam.

The orders were pronounced by the court while deciding the complaint filed by Manjeet Singh, a resident of the Pakhowal road, Ludhiana. The complainant had submitted that Manohar Lal and Neelam Rani had taken a friendly loan. Thereafter, the accused issued a cheque of Rs 1,60,000 in favour of the complainant in March, 2010, to repay the loan amount with the assurance that the same would be encashed on its presentation to his bank.

But when the cheque was presented to the banker of the accused, it was dishonoured with the remarks “account closed”. Similarly, Sakun Kumar’s cheque of Rs 1,80,000 was also bounced due to the insufficient funds. Despite serving a legal notice, the accused failed to make the payment, further added the complainant. On the other hand, the accused denied the allegations. After appreciating the evidence on record, the court found them guilty and sentenced accordingly.



Two held with drugs

Khamano, October 8
The Khamano police has claimed to have arrested two persons and recovered 10 gm smack from their possession. The police had laid a check post near railway under-construction bridge here when Kunal, a resident of Ward No 8, Mandi Gobindgarh, was caught.

During the search 5 gm smack was recovered from him. In another incident the police nabbed a person near Radha Swami Satsang Ghar, Sanghol. The accused has been identified as Anush and seized 5 gm smack. The Khamano police has registered cases under the NDPS Act. — OC



Cash, items stolen from ayurvedic dispensary
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, October 8
An incident of theft has been reported at an ayurvedic dispensary at Jawahar Nagar yesterday.

According to Dr Veenu Khanna, in charge of the dispensary, “Thieves stole away Rs 108 from the drawer, which were collected from patients as consultation fee.”

Apart from the money, there were some clinical instruments, a cooker, a few pans and a gas cylinder, which were stolen by breaking locks.

“We have five rooms in the dispensary. When we left the dispensary on Saturday, everything was fine, but when we came this morning, we found all locks were broken and things missing.”

The dispensary in charge has filed a complaint at the Kochhar market police station.



Undertrial escapes from court complex
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, October 8
An undertrial escaped from the court complex this afternoon while he was being taken back to the jail after being presented before the judge.

According to information, Amrik Singh, lodged at the Central Jail, was brought before the judge. After his appearance, he fled from the scene by giving the police a slip. According to Jaspal Singh, chowki in charge, the undertrial was lodged at the jail under Section 307 of the IPC and was a resident of the Guru Nanak Colony.

“The police is looking into the matter and a case has been registered so far,” said Jaspal Singh.



Jarkhar Academy storm into final
Anil Datt

Ludhiana, October 8
The Mata Sahib Kaur Academy, Jarkhar, blanked Sangrur Academy 6-0 to storm into the final in the junior section of the eighth All-India Guru Gobind Singh Gold Cup Hockey Tournament being organized by the Ludhiana Sports Welfare Association at the Prithipal Singh Memorial AstroTurf Stadium at the Punjab Agricultural University campus today.

All goals came in the first session.

Jarkhar academy lads surged ahead in the fifth minute through Gurjeet Singh and made it 2-nil in the next minute when Darshpreet Singh sounded the board.

They added another goal three minutes later, as Darshpreet found the target again. Daljeet Singh and Ranjeet Singh Rinku pumped in two goals in the 23rd and 26th minutes, respectively, which sealed Sangrur academy’s fate 6-0.

The second match was played between the sports wing, Kila Raipur, and Moga Academy, which ended in a 3-3 draw.

Kila Raipur players drew the first blood in the 21st minute through Sukhjeet Singh. He again struck immediately into the second half to read it 2-0.

Gagandeep Singh of Moga Academy reduced the margin in the 41st minute, while Kila Raipur’s Sukhchain Singh scored in the 52nd minute to make it 3-1.

As it appeared that the Kila Raipur boys would romp home winners, Moga Academy surprised their rivals chipping in two goals in quick succession (59th minute by Gurminder Jit Singh and Gurjant Singh in the 61st minute) to level the score 3-3.

Both teams earned three penalty corners, but all these opportunities went a begging.

Olympian and deputy director, sports, PAU, Ramandeep Singh Grewal, and prominent sports promoter Jagjeet Singh Sandhu were guests of honour today.



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