L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Budha Nullah still a toxic vein of city
Puneet Pal Singh Gill
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, February 9
The efforts to clean Budha Nullah are proving futile as the Ludhiana Municipal Corporation has failed to check the dumping of solid waste into the nullah.

This despite the fact that a private company has been given the contract of solid waste management in the city. However, the garbage floating in the nullah is still a common sight. The MC officials claim that private garbage collectors might be dumping trash into the nullah. The MC as well as the Punjab Pollution Control Board officials claim there is no discharge of untreated water into the nullah, but new discharge pipes are laid every year into it. The nullah remains the most polluted water body in the state.

Though the MC officials claim the discharge pipes carry rainwater, a visit by The Tribune team revealed that untreated water was being discharged into the nullah.

It’s not that efforts are not being made by the government, but lack regular monitoring by the MC officials along the nullah is leading to such a situation. Solid waste can be seen floating on the nullah near Gandhi Nagar.

MC Commissioner Rakesh Kumar Verma said the MC was already in the process to draft a master plan for Budha Nullah. “Once the master plan is ready, such problems will be solved. Still, I will ask the staff to check the dumping of garbage into the nullah,” claimed Verma.

After remaining on paper for 20 months, the bio-remediation project started in December 2012. But if residents do not stop dumping garbage into it, the project will be of no use and the nullah will continue to pollute the Sutlej.

A clean water body once

The city flourished along the clean water channel in the late 19th century. It has now turned into a slow moving stream carrying black-coloured toxic waste from the city into the Sutlej. The nullah has a golden past. There is substantial evidence that the nullah was a sub-channel of the Sutlej. Historians say Lodhi Fort was constructed in the 17th century on its bank. Originating from several streams near Ropar, the nullah, which was earlier known as Budha Dariya, takes a shape near Machhiwara. It then passes through the city and flows into the Sutlej in the Bet area. Though the Sutlej changed its course, the streams continued to feed Budha Dariya. After 1960, Budha Dariya began changing its character as a number of industries, especially the dyeing and electroplating units, started discharging effluents into it. Even hospitals in the city started throwing truckloads of medical waste into it.


3 travel agents arrested for duping youths
80 fake passports, Rs 12 lakh, SIM cards, computer recovered
Gurminder Singh Grewal

The youths who were duped by the travel agents in Khanna on Saturday
The youths who were duped by the travel agents in Khanna on Saturday. Photos by writer

Khanna, February 9
The Machhiwara police has arrested three travel agents for duping several youths on the pretext of sending them to Australia. The police has recovered 80 passports, Rs 12 lakh and a Swift car from their possession.

On learning about the arrest of the travel agents, the duped youths, hailing from Punjab and Haryana, reached the police station.

SPD, Khanna, Bhupinder Singh said a police party led by SHO, Machhiwara, and DSP, Samrala, set up a checkpoint near Canal Bridge, Garhi Tarkhana, following a tip-off. The police party signalled a Swift car coming from the Samrala side to stop. The occupants of the car tried to flee, but were overpowered by the police. During the search, the police recovered 80 passports, Rs 12 lakh, SIM cards, photocopies of fake passports and a computer.

The arrested youths have been identified as 23-year-old Amandeep Singh, a resident of Machhiwara and the kingpin of the gang, 22-year-old Ramandeep Singh, a resident of Lalton Kalan, and 22-year-old Manjit Singh of Saloudi.

The SPD said the accused had been running a fake travel agency at Machhiwara for the past over two months. They duped hundreds of youths belonging to Kapurthala, Jalandhar, Fatehgarh Sahib, Khanna, Nawanshahr, Patiala and even from Haryana.

The SPD said the accused downloaded forms of a maritime shipping company from Internet and told the youths that they would go to Australia via sea route. He said Amandeep Singh, the kingpin of the gang, had done BCA.

The police has registered a case under Sections 420, 465, 467, 468, 471 and 473 of the IPC against the accused.



Cop’s daughter rams car into BMW
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, February 9
High drama was witnessed after a policeman’s daughter rammed her car into a BMW before hitting a motorcyclist near Mini Secretariat today.

The girl was neither challaned nor did the police take any action against her. The girl, a daughter of an assistant sub-inspector (ASI), was driving a Chevrolet Beat car when the incident took place. The girl left the spot a few minutes after the incident.

It is learnt that the registration number on the Chevrolet Beat car was fake. The girl even failed to show the driving licence or the registration certificate.

An eyewitness said the girl told the owner of the BMW car that she would pay for the damages, but the car driver was adamant that the police should take action against her. He also left the spot after a few minutes.

The car was towed away to the to the Kochhar Market police post.



Hooked to drugs, these youths are on a revival path
Anupam Bhagria
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, February 9
Coming out of the blind alley of drug addiction is not easy, yet these young men who got hooked to drugs are trying their best to lead a normal life.

Interacting with a few young men who are under treatment at various de-addiction centres here, it was found that peer pressure was a major factor that led them to experiment with drugs. Usually, the addiction starts with smoking, after which many youngsters graduate to heroin and smack. Twenty-eight-year-old Rakesh Kumar (name changed), who got married a few months ago, said: "I started with cigarettes. Some acquaintances had offered those to me. I thought smoking was fine. Gradually, there was one addiction after the other. I did not even realise that I had taken to smack and heroin."

“Thanks to my wife's efforts who took me to the de-addiction centre. I am on way to recovery. My will power is strong now and I think I am 75 per cent cured," he said.

The young man wants to revive his sports activities. His mother, while lamenting that the family had remained unaware about their son's addiction to drugs, said: "Earlier, our son used to fight with us for money. He would borrow money from us on one pretext or the other. Now, I am getting to know that he used to spend Rs 1,000 daily on drugs. But thank God he is now trying his level best to come out of all this."

Suresh (name changed), a 22-year-old drug addict, said he had betrayed his parents' trust by lying to them time and again. “We do not have any financial problem at home. About three years ago when I was tense due to my studies, one of my friends offered me something in form of powder. I tried it and found it difficult to digest. But slowly I became dependent on it," he said.

He continued to deceive his parents till last month when his father caught him red-handed. But by that time, he was in very bad shape.

However, Suresh is determined to leave the dangerous world of drug addiction. He is on medication. Now, his goal is to lead a drug-free life and be a successful businessman.

In yet another case, the mother of a 20-year-old curses herself as to why she did not object to her son's activities. She said: "He used to reach home after 10 pm and even missed his college many a time. I thought he was with his friends. I could not have imagined that he would fall in a bad company. Thankfully, I convinced him for treatment at a de-addiction centre and he agreed to it," she said. "I pray to God to strengthen his will power and help him come out of the mess."

Peer pressure to blame

It was learnt that peer pressure was a major factor that led youngsters to experiment with drugs. The mother of a 20-year-old said: “My son used to reach home after 10 pm and even missed his college many a time. I could not have imagined that he would fall in a bad company. Thankfully, I convinced him for treatment at a de-addiction centre and he agreed to it. I pray that God strengthens his will power and helps him come out of the mess."



Dog bite cases on the rise in district
Anupam Bhagria
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, February 9
With increase in stray dog population, there is also a spurt in dog bite cases in the district.

The victims have to bear the pain of injections and they also have to shell out Rs 1,200 to 1,500 from their own pockets to save their precious lives against rabies.

The number of dog bite cases are increasing year after year but stock of anti -rabies vaccines is not as per the requirement at Lord Mahavir Civil Hospital, Ludhiana.

The hospital authorities arrange the first injection from their funds and for the remaining booster injections, they refer the patient to Nikhil Singal Nobel Trust, an NGO.

Dr Tikka JS Sidhu, medical officer, at a dispensary being run by Nikhil Singal Noble Trust, Civil Hospital, said, "We provide free anti-rabies injections to the needy patients of dog bite. We directly buy these injections form the company, so it costs us comparatively less. Otherwise in the market, each of these injections is for Rs 250 to 300 in cost. Many poor patients come to us for these injections after getting the first vaccine from the Civil Hospital."

Dr Sidhu further said, "In 2009 we gave free of cost injections to 400 patients, in 2010 to 410 and in 2011 to 392 patients. In 2012, we have helped 496 patients with free of cost anti-rabies injections."

Dog bite cases on the rise

According to the data available from the department, in 2009, 2,071 cases of dog bite were reported in Ludhiana district. In 2012, the number of dog bite cases increased to 2,252. This year, 268 dog-bite cases have been reported till February 6.

When to take anti-rabies shots

The first injection must be given within 24 hours of the dog bite. The remaining four booster injections are administered on the third, seventh, 14th and 28th day of the dog bite.

SMO speaks

We administer first anti-rabies injection from the hospital while the remaining four are given by the Nikhil Singal Nobel Trust, an NGO. We have already placed our order of anti-rabies injections with the state government and hope to get a stock of about 200 vaccines soon.

Dr Karamvit Goyal, Senior Medical Officer, Lord Mahavir Civil Hospital, Ludhiana



MC blind to commuters’ safety
Puneet Pal Singh Gill
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, February 9
Every time a city resident dies in an accident on Elevated Road, the Ludhiana Municipal Corporation officials visit the spot and make tall claims of installing safety grills there. But ironically, once the memory of such an accident fades away, the officials don’t act.

The death of a 15-year-old boy, Gurpreet Kumar, in an accident on the road, has once again raised several questions as to how serious is the MC about the safety of city residents.

The road was constructed to ease the congestion.

An accident-prone curve near Master Tara Singh Memorial College can lead to a fatal mishap.

Gurpreet, a student of Class VIII, and his father Kuldeep Singh, a mechanic, were on a scooter when a car hit them and they fell. They were rushed to a hospital, where Gurpreet was declared brought dead.

Former councillor Parminder Mehta said, “The MC should understand that the curve near Master Tara Singh Memorial College is dangerous and safety grills must be installed here."

Vishnu Dev, a resident of Basant Nagar, Shivpuri, wrote a letter to the Chief Justice of the Punjab and Haryana High Court, demanding that safety grills be installed around the road. “I have written several letters to the senior officials, but nothing happened. The boy died due to the negligence of the Ludhiana Municipal Corporation officials and the Deputy Commissioner.”

This is not the first time that such an incident has taken place at the same spot. In March 2008, two youths had died after falling from the road. Both the youths, who were going on a bike, could not anticipate the turn on the road near Master Tara Singh Memorial College. They banged against the wall and died on the spot.

After one such incident, the then Senior Deputy Mayor, Parveen Bansal, had visited the spot and had announced that the safety grills would be installed. But sadly, nothing happened later.

Mayor Harcharan Singh Gohalwaria said, “Safety grills will be installed on all accident-prone spots so that no such incident takes place in future,” he claimed.



Delay in work fumes residents
Jaswant Shetra

Jagraon, February 9
Resentment prevails among residents and shopkeepers over the delay in construction work on Malak Road.

The residents said workers of the municipal council had dug up the road for laying pipelines three weeks ago.

"We are made to face a lot of difficulties due to the delay in the construction of the road," lamented Hardev Singh, a resident.

"The workers did not even bother to level the road after laying the pipes. It becomes difficult for us to commute on the road," said another resident Avtar Singh.

As the work was going on, the administration had diverted the traffic to Tehsil Road, where traffic jams are a routine affair.

Shopkeepers lamented that they were suffering losses as the road was closed for traffic. MC president Baldev Krishan Dhir said the construction would be started soon.

"Pipelines have been laid and the road will be levelled at the earliest,"said Dhir.



CME on burn care
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, February 9
The department of plastic surgery today organised a two-day CME on ''Total Burn Care" at Dumra Auditorium today.

The workshop was inaugurated by secretary of the DMCH managing society Prem Kumar Gupta.

A lecture on "Epidemiology and Burden of Disease" was delivered by course chairman

Dr Rajeev Ahuja from the MAMC, New Delhi.

"A burn injury can be classified as a chronic disease as it requires long-term management, supervised rehabilitation and psychosocial support," said Dr Ahuja.

Dr Karoon Aggarwal spoke on "Patho-physiology of Burns" and "Metabolic responses". Dr Arun Goel from the MAMC, New Delhi, dwelt on "Assessment, Recording and Medico-legal Aspects". Course coordinator Dr Sanjeev Uppal, professor and head, plastic surgery, said, "Although standard guidelines have been set by various burn associations, not many are aware of these.



It’s time to celebrate love
Tribune News Service

A girl relishes chocolates on Chocolate Day in Ludhiana
A girl relishes chocolates on Chocolate Day in Ludhiana. Tribune photo: Himanshu Mahajan

Ludhiana, February 9
It is that time of the year when love is celebrated.

Not only Valentine's Day, but other days such as Rose Day, Propose Day, Chocolate Day, Teddy Day, Promise Day and Hug Day also mean a lot to those in love.

"We are celebrating the entire week," said Raman, a resident.

For Anirudh, a resident, the entire week is all the more special as he is getting married on Valentine's Day.

"Although my fiancée and I will not be able to meet during the week, celebrating the week has surely made the pre-wedding days special," he said.

"We are not keen on celebrating all the days, but as I like chocolates, Chocolate Day is special for me," said Preeti, a homemaker.

"Love cannot be restricted to a week or a day, but because the festival is celebrated all across, it feels nice to make expression in the season for love," she said.

Roses and 'hearts' have become the most sought after. A gift store owner in Model Town said, "A variety of hearts, roses and teddy bears are available to define love."

Not all, however, are impressed with the celebrations of the Valentine's Day. "I am not in favour of or against the celebrations," said Harneet, a resident.



Rifle body chief sacked

Ludhiana, February 9
Retaliating against the conduct of president of the Punjab Rifle Shooting Association (PRSA) Gurbir Singh Sandhu's "autocratic" decision to remove the elected office-bearers, functionaries of the association sacked Sandhu from the post of president. The decision was taken in a meeting of the executive committee of the association held today.

Vice-president of the body Rana GS Sodhi said, "After perusal of evidence provided by the executive committee members, it has been substantiated that Sandhu had overstepped his authority and illegally tried to remove bona fide elected senior functionaries from their elected posts. The executive committee recommended that the issue should be discussed in the annual general meeting of the PRSA scheduled for February 15 for ratification.— OC



pau notes
Kisan Clubs formed

Ludhiana: Scientists of the Central Institute Post Harvest Engineering and Technology (CIPHET) apprised farmers of useful technologies for enhancing income during the launch of two Kisan Clubs at Fangla and Jalla villages in Ludhiana. Head, transfer of technology, CIPHET, Dr Deepak Raj Rai said farmers could increase their income by adopting technologies of value addition in post-harvest sector. “We are imparting training to farmers in soybean processing, green chilli powder, spices processing and cattle feed."

Annual athletics meet

The seventh annual athletics meet of Punjab Agricultural University will be held on February 11 and 12. Dr DS Cheema, director, Students Welfare, said various events will be held during the meet. He said the alumni of the university who brought laurels in the field of sports would be honoured.— TNS



ludhiana scan
Ban on hookah bars

District Magistrate Rahul Tewari has imposed ban on hukka bars under Section 144 of the CrPC. He said that none of the visitors in restaurants or hookah bars would be served hookah from now onwards. He said that these orders would be implemented across the entire district, including municipal corporation, the municipal committee areas, and in villages which constitute the revenue district of Ludhiana. He said that action would be taken if anybody is found violating these orders under Section 188 of the IPC. He said that the Civil Surgeon had brought to his notice that many hukka bars were being run in the district, and tobacco containing nicotine was served there. He further said that school and college-going students must abstain from this bad habit.

Teachers’ union meet

A meeting of the SSA/RMSA/CSS Teachers Union, Punjab, was held on Saturday. Manraj Singh Virk, block in charge, presided over the meeting. He said that nothing was being done to fulfil the demands of the employees. He said that they had asked for increment in salaries of SSA teahers, shifting of teachers, regularisation of teachers etc.


Members of the Punjabi Sahit Akademi condoled the death of Punjabi novelist Karnail Singh Nijher. Prof Gurbhajan Singh Gill, president of the academy, said that Karnail Singh Nijher worked tirelessly to give Punjabi its rightful status. He was the soul of Punjabi literature in Doaba region, he said. Dr Anoop Singh, from the academy said that his had left a void in the Punjabi literary world.


The Municipal Workers Union held protests against the municipal corporation. Ram Jatan Pal from the union said that the union had submitted a set of demands to the Municipal Commissioner but nothing had been done so far.

Power shutdown

There will be power cut from 10 am to 3 pm in the areas, including Gaushala Road, Kashmir Nagar, Harbans Pura etc, as 11 kV Kashmir Nagar feeder will be repaired.

Welfare society meeting

The Urban Estate Residents Welfare Society, Phase-II, Dugri, held its executive body meeting and discussed issues concerning the locality with area councillor Jaswinder Singh Bhola and Satwinder Singh Virk, SHO, Dugri. PS Bawa, president of the society, raised issues regarding poor conditions of local roads, lack of cleanliness of road 'bunds', the problem of garbage being dumped in the open and sterilisation of stray dogs. He urged the councillor to facilitate provision of at least four bus stops within Phase-II to provide good public transportation services to the residents.

Five teachers join PU senate

Five staff members of Master Tara Singh Memorial College have been selected as added members to the Panjab University Senate. Teachers, including Harminder Kaur, Inderjeet Kaur, Davinderpal Kaur, Gurwinder Kaur and Dr Kirandeep Kaur have been selected. — TNS



Rekha Rani declared best athlete
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, February 9
The 43rd annual athletics meet of Ramgarhia Girls College, Miller Ganj, Ludhiana, was held today. The meet was declared open by Nilambari Jagdale, ADCP-1, Ludhiana, in the presence of Ranjodh Singh, president, Ramgarhia Educational Council, Harbans Singh, general secretary and principal Dr Narinder Sandhu.

About 250 students participated in the meet. The events of the day were 50 m,100 m, 200 m, 400 m, 800 m races, long jump, high jump, shot put, discus throw and javelin throw. Fun games such as sack race, potato race, chatti race and hurdle race were also organised. Rekha Rani was declared the best athlete.

Students of the music and dance department presented a cultural programme.

Results: Relay race: Rekha, Jyoti, Kulveer, Amandeep 1; Mandeep, Sandeep, Poonamjeet, Harpreet 2; Jaspreet, Sukhleen, Komal, Nidhi 3; skipping: Ramandeep Kaur 1; Pooja 2 and Reena Rani 3; 400 m race: Rekha 1; Jyoti Banga 2; Harjinder Kaur 3; sack race: Reena Rani 1; Jyoti Banga 2; Mandeep Kaur 3; three-legged race: Bhanu and Priya 1; Manpreet Kaur and Charanpreet 2; Rupinder and Sandeep 3.



HOME PAGE | Punjab | Haryana | Jammu & Kashmir | Himachal Pradesh | Regional Briefs | Nation | Opinions |
| Business | Sports | World | Letters | Chandigarh | Ludhiana | Delhi |
| Calendar | Weather | Archive | Subscribe | Suggestion | E-mail |