L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Politics of demolition
Leaders turn out to be stumbling blocks for civic body officials
Puneet Pal Singh Gill
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 9
The Ludhiana Municipal Corporation authorities may be trying their best to make the city encroachment free, but politicians often pose a hurdle during demolition drives.

Political leaders, including councillors, are seen misbehaving with MC officials when they try to raze illegal structures. Only yesterday, a councillor allegedly misbehaved with a female assistant town planner during a demolition drive on Chandigarh Road. The councillor also filed a complaint against the official with the Mayor.

This was not for the first time that a politician had tried to disrupt the MC drive. The drive was carried out following the orders of the Punjab and Haryana High Court. The politicians are not aware that they can also face contempt of court if they disrupt the demolition drives.

Yesterday, the MC team comprising Assistant Town Planners Rajinder Sharma, Monica Anand and Kamaljit Kaur had gone to raze illegal structures on Chandigarh Road. When the MC officials were about to demolish a building, an area politician asked the MC officials to give two days time to the owner so that he could demolish the illegal structure on his own. Even though the MC officials told him that the drive was being carried out following the orders of the Punjab and Haryana High Court, the politician remained adamant.

The ATP said the politician, accompanied by his supporters, even held her hand. “I told him to behave after which he left from the spot,” she said.

The politician today held a meeting with his supporters and Mayor Harcharan Singh Gohalwaria in Sector 32 on Chandigarh Road and complained against the ATP.

Another ATP said whenever they carried out a drive, politicians often tried to influence them. “Many a time, they just order us to leave the spot. But they should understand that we are performing our duty,” said he said.

When contacted, MC Commissioner Rakesh Kumar Verma said: “The officials should not be stopped from performing their duty.” 


Cooks, helpers medically ‘unfit’ 
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 9
Cooks and helpers preparing mid-day meal for about 32,000 students are not medically fit, putting the lives of children to risk.

Following the Deputy Commissioner Rahul Tiwari’s instructions to keep a check on the preparation of mid-day meal at a kitchen near Sherpur, Additional Deputy Commissioner (Development) Rishipal Singh found that some cooks and helpers were medically unfit.

The medical examination of the cooks and helpers is being conducted by a team of doctors. The reports will be out by Monday.

Talking to The Tribune, Rishipal Singh said he along with the Civil Surgeon visited the kitchen yesterday where mid-day meal for about 32,000 students was being prepared. The meal was to be distributed among 180 schools across the city.

"We minutely observed the cooks and helpers preparing food in the kitchen. We suspect that a few of them might be suffering from some disease. To get a clear picture, we have asked a team of doctors to examine them. We will get the report by Monday,” said the ADC (D).

"In case they suffer from TB or any other communicable disease, they will immediately be asked to leave. The food will be prepared under the supervision of teachers and a doctor from now onwards,” said the ADC (D).

Meanwhile, members of the teachers' unions said it was not viable to follow the instructions issued by the Deputy Commissioner. Parveen Kumar, general secretary of the Government School Teachers’ Union, said: “The teachers can remain present when the food is prepared, but they have to rush to their respective schools after 8 am.”

"The meals are served around 12.30 pm. In extreme summer, the food gets stale quickly. By 8 am, we can make sure that the food is prepared under hygienic conditions in the kitchen, but what after 8 am?" questioned Parveen Kumar.

The Democratic Teachers' Front said when the contractor was being paid an handsome amount by the state government for preparing mid-day meal, he alone should be held accountable for the quality of food. “Officials from the health department should be deputed to check the quality of food. We can check the food at the schools, but it is not easy for us to check how it is being prepared,” said Ramanjit Sandhu, president and Sukhwinder Neelh, general secretary of the association.



11 hurt in car-tempo collision 
Our Correspondent

Khanna, March 9
Eleven persons, including women and a minor girl, were injured in a road accident near Bhadla village near here.

A group of 15 persons, all relatives, were on their way to Mandi Gobindgarh from Bhutta village in a tempo when a Zen car coming from the opposite direction collided with their vehicle near Bhadla village.

Some passers-by informed the police. The injured were rushed to the Khanna Civil Hospital. The injured have been identified as Harnek Singh (42), Gurmeet Kaur (40), Paramjit Singh (50), Sarabjit Kaur (58), Harpreet Kaur (26), jaswant Kaur (60), Kehar Kaur (60), Baljit Kaur (40), Harbans Kaur and Manpreet Kaur (11).

SHO Waryam Singh said the injured were residents of Bhutta village near Khamano and were going towards Mandi Gobindgarh to attend a social function. The police has registered a case against the driver of the car. 



MC fails to hand over possession of land
Puneet Pal Singh Gill
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 9
The Ludhiana Municipal Corporation has failed to give the possession of land for 44 shop-cum-offices (SCOs) opposite Keys Hotel in Shaheed Bhagat Singh Nagar to buyers.

A total of 21 SCOs, each measuring 100 sq feet, were auctioned on November 26, nine on December 26 and 14 on January 22.

The reserve price of these SCOs was Rs 1.5 lakh per sq yard, each costing Rs 1.5 crore. But the MC auctioned the SCOs at a much higher price, with the highest bid going as high as Rs 2.10 lakh per sq yard for a corner plot. As per rough estimates, each SCO was auctioned for an average price of more than Rs 1.60 lakh per sq yard.

The buyers were to deposit 10 per cent of the total amount in first 24 hours, 15 per cent in one month and the remaining 75 per cent in six half-yearly instalments.

Sources in the MC said that around Rs 18-20 crore (25 per cent of the total amount) had already been deposited by the buyers. But none of them had 
been given the possession of the land.

One such buyer lamented that they had been urging the MC to give them the possession of the land and develop the area so that they could start construction of the SCOs. "The MC officials should understand that if the SCOs are constructed, prices of yet to be auctioned SCOs would automatically increase. We have paid Rs 18-20 crore to the MC and it should at least spend some amount on the development of the site," lamented a buyer.

When contacted, MC Commissioner Rakesh Kumar Verma said: "I will make sure that the area is developed and the land is handed over to the buyers," he assured.



Two held for theft at FCI godowns 
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, March 9
The Jagraon police has arrested two youths wanted in a case of pilferage of rice from the godowns of the FCI at Hathur near Jagraon.

The accused have been identified as Meena Ram and Mohammad, both residents of Bagh Kheta Ram area of Jagraon. The police has also recovered five bags of stolen rice from the residences of both the accused.

SHO, Jagraon, Mohammad Jamil said both the accused were wanted in a theft case registered against them couple of days ago. Five bags of rice were stolen from the FCI godowns in Hathur on February 26.

The accused were arrested by a police party led by ASI Hari Mittar during a naka near New Grain Market, Jagraon. Two of their accomplices, however, managed to flee.

ASI Hari Mittar said during the preliminary investigation, both the accused confessed to stealing rice bags from the FCI godowns.

This is not the first time that the accused have been arrested in a theft case. Both the accused have already been facing trial in more than half dozen theft cases registered against them at various police stations. 



Murder case cracked
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 9
The city police claimed to have solved the murder mystery of 25-year-old Anil Kumar whose body was found on the banks of the Sutlej on March 5.

The police said Anil was murdered by the members of his gang as they suspected him to be a police informer.

The Ladhowal police had arrested three persons, identified as Rahul Kumar, a resident of Maya Nagar, Jasian Road, Vicky, a resident of Partappura, and Gurdeep Singh Deepa, a resident of Pavitar Nagar.

Gurpreet Singh, SHO, Ladhowal, said: "Anil Kumar has a criminal background. The accused were arrested by the police a few days ago in a theft case. They suspected that Anil had informed the police as he was not arrested.

They decided to teach Anil a lesson. After coming out from the jail on Monday evening, they called Anil and went to a vacant plot near the Sutlej. They all had smack, the police said. They attacked Anil with a sharp-edged weapon and dumped his body on the banks of Sutlej.

The police nabbed the accused following a tip-off.



Students allege bias, protest
Accuse college admn of giving fewer marks in internal assessment
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, March 9
Students of the Ludhiana Group of Colleges, Chaunkiman, near Jagraon held a protest against the alleged biased approach of the college administration towards them.

The protesting students also raised slogans against the college authorities. Student leader Sukhwinder Singh said the students who attended classes regularly and submitted their assignments to teachers on time were given low marks in the internal assessment.

"There are many students who have been given fewer marks in the internal assessment even as they were regular in attending their classes.

On the other hand, some other students who neither attended their classes nor submitted the assignments on time were awarded good marks," alleged Sukhwinder Singh.

He alleged: "Heavy fines are being imposed on students and whenever we try to raise voice, the college administration threatens to cut marks in the internal assessment."

The girl students alleged that the security guards of the college often misbehave with them when they ask for gate pass to go out of the college for an urgent work.

The protesting students also threatened to intensify their struggle if their demands were not met.

Rajiv Gulati, general secretary of the Ludhiana Group of Colleges management committee, however, denied the allegations.

"The allegations are baseless and if the students have any problem, they should talk to the management committee," added Gulati.



No clue about idol thieves
Our Correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh, March 9
After five days of a broad day light theft of two ancient idols from Adhishwar Dham, the police is still grappling in dark for clues.

Two youths, between 16 and 20 years of age, had allegedly stolen two idols of “ashatdhatu”, an amalgam of gold, silver, copper, zinc, lead, tin, iron and mercury.

One of the idols is reported to be at least three centuries old. The cost of idols is estimated to be in millions of rupees in the international market.

Madam Naresh Jain, in charge of the shrine, said the suspects, who introduced themselves as painters from Dhuri town, had entered the shrine on the pretext of paying obeisance and meeting the priest at around 1.30 pm on Monday.

The staff became suspicious after the duo did not return and the priest denied having met any of the devotees. It was later found that two idols were missing from the main temple. One of the idols was of Shanty Nath, a Jain saint.

Investigations revealed the duo had stolen the idols by throwing them on the rear side of the shrine after wrapping them in a jute bag.



Schools celebrate Maha Shivratri
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 9
Spring Dale Senior Secondary Public School celebrated Maha Shivratri with fervour and devotion.

Dedicating the day to the worship of Lord Shiva, the morning assembly started with a melodious "bhajan".

The gathering recited hymns about the greatness of the Lord Shiva and Goddess Parvati, creating a divine atmosphere on the campus. Managing director Avinash Kaur Walia stressed upon respecting all religion alike Kheer, wild berries, bananas and sweets were distributed among students and staff.

At ABC Montessori School, the function commenced with an oration by Vandana. She explained the grandeur of the day. The story of Lord Shiva's wedding with Goddess Parvati was narrated.

Shiv Stuti was followed by a performance by the Classes Nursery, LKG and UKG students. Yuvraj as Shiva, Smaira Thapar as Parvati and Sunny Shah as Ganesha depicted the wedding ceremony. The show concluded with Shiv Aradhana performed by the school director, Charandeep Dua.



Students awarded degrees at Ramgarhia Girls’ College
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 9
Union Information and Broadcasting Minister Manish Tewari said the Government of India had taken concrete steps to ensure the safety and dignity of women, but the efforts could yield better results only with the active support of the society. He was speaking during the annual convocation at Ramgarhia Girls' College. He said for creating a free and safe environment for women, there was a need to bring about a change in the mindset of people towards women. The Minister impressed upon the people to accept women as equal partners in the development of the nation and society. On their part, the women, too, would have to play a bigger role in eliminating social evils, he said. Congratulating the graduating students, Tewari said a bright future was ahead of them. Tewari awarded the roll of honour to 21 students who brought glory to the college in various fields. He also conferred the master’s and bachelor’s degrees upon 783 students.

Emerging trends in IT discussed

The Gujranwala Guru Nanak Institute of Management and Technology organised a seminar on the emerging trends in information technology. Dr Hardeep Singh, head of the computer science department at Guru Nanak Dev University, was the guest speaker. Dr Singh said the latest innovations had their roots in strong foundations laid down in 1950s and 60s. He said today the technology changed every year and a half, making the previous discoveries totally obsolete. Dr Singh emphasised upon the “Big Data” as the latest buzz word in the market, and discussed in length the latest technologies used to tackle the data which was not only enormous in size but also unstructured in nature.

Pharmacy colleges for hike in tuition fee

A meeting of the association of Punjab-based self-financed pharmacy colleges was held at the Gujranwala Guru Nanak College of Pharmacy. The attendees discussed the financial and other problems faced by diploma institutes affiliated to the Punjab State Board of Technical Education. The meeting was presided over by Dr SP Singh, chairman of the association and former Vice-Chancellor of Guru Nanak Dev University. Colleges decided to present a memorandum to the state government appealing for an increase in the tuition fee for diploma students.

Dr Singh condemned the public notice issued by the Haryana State Pharmacy Council as per which those candidates who had completed matriculation and senior secondary schooling from the Haryana board or the CBSE and diploma or degree in pharmacy from the PCI-approved institutions of Haryana would be registered in the council. He said it was against the regulations of the PCI, as per which a candidate passing from any PCI-approved institution in India could get registered anywhere in India.

Students seek blessings before annual exams

To seek the blessings of Almighty for the success of students in the university examinations in April 2013, kirtan and ardaas were held at the Guru Nanak Khalsa College for Women, Gujarkhan Campus, Model Town. The college management, principal, staff and students from different streams assembled for the function. On the occasion, Bhai Sahib Bhai Parminder Singh and Ragi Jatha from Gurdwara Shaheedan created a divine atmosphere with holy verses. Principal Manjit Kaur Ghuman wished students luck for the exams.

National seminar on Women's Day

Sadbhavna College, Raikot, which works for the upliftment of the rural and underprivileged women, observed International Women's Day with a national seminar on the college campus. The seminar was inaugurated by Sant Jagjit Singh of Lopo. In his address, he lauded the efforts of Sadbhavna Group for the rural womenfolk of Punjab. Dr AK Banerjee, president of the college, said the college worked to empower women.

Quality education in focus

A two-day national-level seminar was organised at the BCM College of Education. It provided a platform to academicians, experts and research scholars to share their experience towards the promotion of quality in education. The various sub-themes of the seminar were -- role of research in quality enhancement of higher education, quality in classroom interaction practices, reflections on teacher education curriculum, and sharing practices to promote quality culture in teacher education institutes. Dr K Rama, regional director (northern), NAAC, delivered the keynote address. In her address she highlighted the various challenges before the NAAC for the quality accreditation of institutions.

Final-year students given warm send-off

Saturday was a special day for the graduating students of the department of commerce and IT of the Master Tara Singh Memorial College for Women, when their juniors bade farewell to them. Popular Punjabi folk singer Lachi Bawa captivated everyone with her melodious voice. The students, too, presented a cultural programme comprising of songs, dances and a rich cultural extravaganza. The final year students sashayed down the ramp, dressed in their best attires. Varun (BCA-III) was crowned Miss Farewell (IT) and Jaisika (BCom-III) was adjudged Miss Farewell (Commerce). Priyanka (BBA-III) was adjudged the first runner-up and Liza (BCom-III) bagged the second runner-up title. The title of Miss Beautiful Hair went to Rajwinder Kaur (BBA-III) and that of Miss Beautiful attire to Shivangi (BBA-III). Pooja (BBA) was declared Miss Diva. College principal Dr Parveen Kaur Chawla congratulated the winners and lauded the efforts of staff and students.

Meritorious students felicitated

Sri Aurobindo College of Commerce and Management organised the 9th Annual Prize Distribution Function to honour the meritorious students. Prof Naval Kishore, dean, college development council, Panjab University, graced the occasion as the chief guest. Principal Dr RL Behl presented the annual report of the college. The toppers from all the classes were felicitated and their parents were also honoured for their constructive contribution. Naval Kishore appreciated the high levels of discipline and decorum followed by the students and the faculty. The cultural items presented by students were marked with energy and enthusiasm.

Anchal, Sugandhi crowned Ms Farewell

The postgraduate department of commerce at the Khalsa College for Women bade farewell to the outgoing students of MCom and BCom. The programme was organised by the first and second year students under the guidance and supervision of faculty members. The cultural programme presented by students included Bhangra Empire, Golden Era of Bollywood, mash-up dance and belly dance. A documentary prepared by the BCom final year students, depicting the cherished moments, made everyone nostalgic. The main attraction of the day was Miss Farewell. Anchal Aggarwal (MCom) and Sugandhi (BCom) won the competition in their respective classes. Harmanpreet Kaur and Komal were adjudged the first and second runners-up among BCom students.



Police looks for ‘abducted’ woman, minor children
Our Correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh, March 9
The Bihar Police and the local police force have joined hands for a coordinated operation to rescue a woman and her two minor sons who were allegedly abducted around six months back by her paramour from Siura Mushari village of Samatipur district in Bihar.

The main accused was arrested from a factory near Bathinda. The police is worried about the safety of the woman and her children, who might have fallen prey to antisocial elements.

Investigations revealed that the victim was married to one Surinder Paswan around 20 years ago. She, reportedly, developed illicit relationship with one Pardeep Paswan, and the duo, along with two minor children, eloped around six months back.

While Pardeep returned to his family at Lehra village in Ludhiana district, the police failed to find any clue about Kalawati and her children’s whereabouts. 



Delegation meets Union Minister

Ludhiana, March 9
A delegation of the United Cycle and Parts Manufacturers Association met Union Minister of Information and Broadcasting Manish Tewari today.

The delegation kept certain points before the Union Minister. He gave a patient hearing and assured the manufacturers of doing the needful. The delegation demanded that central excise on complete cycle should be abolished and the cycle industry should be given relief. Members of the association said TUF schemes should be introduced. "Bicycle and engineering industry should also avail the benefits of the Technology Upgradation Scheme," said Kular.— TNS 



Industry demands body to rehabilitate sick units
Manav Mander
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 9
The industry has demanded that an organisation for the rehabilitation of sick micro and small enterprises on the lines of the Bureau of Industrial and Financial Reconstruction (BIFR) should be set up.

About 25 per cent of the small units in the city have either closed their business or are struggling for survival due the non-availability of easy credit and delay in payments by big firms.

The main reason behind the downturn in the SME sector is the absence of time-bound programme for credit dispensation, high cost of raw material, shortage of working capital and power shortage.

"When a micro or small enterprise suffers losses, not only the assets of the business but an entrepreneur's personal assets also get attached to pay off business

dues. Presently, identification and declaration of sick micro and small unit is with the banks. It has been experienced that banks do not take timely steps to identify sickness," said Badish Jindal, president of the Federation of Association of Small Scale Industries.

MSMEs demand that the identification of small units should be done by a separate agency. As soon as large industries approach the BIFR after the erosion of 50 per cent or more of their net worth, they immediately get protection.

Even the ESI and EPF recoveries are stalled once the large units register with the BIFR. However, the micro and small Enterprises have to continue paying the ESI and EPF dues even during their heightened sickness," said Jindal.

"Delayed payments by big companies are impacting the functioning of small enterprises. This further reduces capital, available with a unit for productive use and lead to sickness. Bunching of ownership is another problem due to which they face hard times, said Kunal Sharma, an industrialist. 



Material distributed for PSEB Class X exams

Ludhiana: The necessary stationery and other items for the Class X examination of the Punjab School Education Board, set to begin on March 12, were disbursed from Government Senior Secondary School for Boys, Jawahar Nagar Camp, on Saturday.

District Education Officer (Secondary) PK Chahal said the material would be provided to various centres on Sunday as well. — TNS



Misuse of smart phones rampant 
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 9
Smart phones with applications, including BBM, Whatsapp and Facebook have certainly made youngsters' lives 'very interesting'.

So hooked on to these latest gadgets, the youngsters refuse to part with these even for a few minutes. Had they been using the phones to get the latest positive information from Internet, sharing lighter jokes with friends, it would not have been bothered parents so much, but the cause of concern is that certain youngsters aged between 14 and 18 exchange obscene pictures/MMSes with each other, which otherwise is a criminal offence.

A parent said her 16-year-old daughter had got a smart phone, which was a birthday gift by her father on her 16th birthday. "But I could never imagine that she would see obscene pictures on the phone. For the past few days, I had been noticing that she was not leaving her phone even for five minutes. It was like an addiction that all the time she carried her phone with her. Two days ago, while she was asleep, I took her phone to see if there was something wrong. It was shocking to see that these youngsters were exchanging obscene pictures. Her father warned her against misusing the phone," she said.

Another parent said despite requests and threats, her 17-year-old son did not listen to her. "He is studying in Class XII. These boys send dirty MMSes to each other. When I took away his phone, his friend gave him a new cellphone. I got to know about it much later," said the parent.

The practice has become so common with the arrival of smart phones that even the Chandigarh Police has been sending messages to parents saying "Parents do keep a watch on your children aged between 15 and 18 as exchanging obscene pics and MMSes is a criminal offence". 

Expert speaks

Ravinder Kala, a psychologist, said adolescents had an easy access to Internet and pornography was readily available. "Besides, these days a normal phone has all the features and children have accessibility to everything. Peer group pressure is another reason that children are being hooked on to such obscenity. "If they avoid all this, they are labelled as boring, outdated and mama's boy. The parent-child communication is going haywire and the distance between parents and adolescents adds to the problems. Parents must share a cordial relationship with their wards and spend more time with them," said Dr Kala. 



Govt fails to keep its promise
Had assured coaches of regularising their service
Charanjit Singh Teja
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 9
The Punjab Government has failed to fulfil its promise of regularising sports coaches even after five years of their recruitment.

Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal and director, sports, had promised to regularise coaches working with the sports department on a contractual basis.

The department recruited 150 coaches by hiring a private company in October 2008.
They were deputed in district sports offices on a minimal four-figure salary.

The coaches qualified from the National Institute of Sports.

Most of them have worked in colleges and schools on good pay scales.

The department had advertised 250 regular posts last year, but did not give a priority to these NIS qualified coaches.

Parminder Singh, president, NIS Qualified Contract Coach Union, said they had constituted the union in 2009.

"At that time, MLA Pargat Singh used to be the director of the sports department of Punjab. He promised to persuade the government to regularise our service. We have met the Deputy Chief Minister several times before the Assembly elections, but to no avail. We also held protests in Giddarbaha and blocked a road, but our agitation too failed to move the government. During the first World Kabaddi Cup, Sukhbir Badal had promised us to do the needful. He said he would regularise our service within a week after winning the elections."

"A year after the elections, we again met the Deputy CM. Following which, he asked the director to regularise our service, but nothing has been done so far," he added. Parminder Singh said, "My previous employer paid me well."



Swiss truffles, Hungarian goulash on palate
Manav Mander
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 9
Tickling the taste buds of city residents, a number of restaurants are offering international cuisines.

With the increasing number of food shows on television, residents get a chance to hone their culinary skills.

One can even shop for international flavours in super markets and departmental stores. Apart from ingredients for dishes like French pot-eu-feu, Hungarian goulash, Lebanese kibbeh or British Yorkshire pudding, the market also attracts a large number of residents hunting for handcrafted ham, almond tagine sauce, Swiss truffles, porcini mushrooms, Greek olives and much more.

Channels like Food Food, TLC and above all Internet have brought about the change.

Presently, TLC has over 25 food shows covering all types of cuisines ranging from German and Mexican to Asian and Italian.

Television and Internet introduced cuisine programming to Indian audience. Since then it has gained popularity and is enjoyed by a wide range of viewers. "Learning recipes through Internet with a live video is so much fun. I make the recipe while watching the video," said Simriti Grewal, a homemaker, who has a proper place for laptop and a small library housing cookery books in her kitchen.

Specially crafted pasta bars and pizza houses have lifted up the tastes of city people. "Not only Italian now Mexican and Lebanese dishes have found their way on the palates of the residents," said Kunal, a bank professional.

Store manager of a super market commenting on the changing tastes of people said, "We stock products according to cuisines so that it is easier for people to pick up ingredients that complement each other. So the sesame oil goes in the Chinese section and the olive oil in the Italian." "As people are increasingly exposed to global cuisines, the demand for international and gourmet foods are growing significantly," said a chef. Spoilt for choice, foodies want to know whether the truffles used in their dish are summer or winter, black or white. Similarly, they are choosy about having a particular cheese in their pasta, said the chef. 



Hike in sand prices opposed
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 9
Unhappy with the hike in sand prices, the Ludhiana District Brick Kiln Owners' Association is up in arms against the state government.

Members of the association said sand was being sold on the black market due to which the brick kiln owners were facing a lot of trouble.

The owners said the ever-increasing sand prices were affecting their business and labourers were leaving the brick kilns. They said they were facing a tough time and needed respite. The members said if the state government failed to solve the problem, they would resort to agitation.

They said they would take out a rally on March 11. The members said earlier the sand was available for Rs 800 per cubic foot, but now it was available for Rs 2,000 per cubic foot.



District scan
110 examined at medical camp

Students of the INIFD perform in a skit, “Awaaz Do”, on harassment faced by women, at Guru Nanak Bhavan on Saturday.
Students of the INIFD perform in a skit, “Awaaz Do”, on harassment faced by women, at Guru Nanak Bhavan on Saturday. Photo: Inderjeet Verma 

As many as 110 people were examined during a free check-up and awareness camp on the occasion of World Kidney Day at Astha Hospital. Medical tests including those of kidney, blood sugar and urine were conducted free-of-cost. Dr Sanjiv Kumar said nine out of every 100 people in the country were suffering from kidney-related diseases. Those who drink less water, take painkillers without consulting physicians and have a high blood pressure or diabetes were more prone to such diseases, he said.

Rural sports fair begins

Union Information and Broadcasting Minister Manish Tewari said the government was strengthening the sports infrastructure in the rural areas. He said this while inaugurating the rural sports fair at Malakpur Bet village. He met the local football team on the occasion. He said sports encouraged brotherhood and discipline.

Commission agents protest

Commission agents of the Ludhiana Sabzi Mandi Aharti Association protested against the contractor for checking their account books, which is the sole right of the Mandi Board officials. Assciation president Som Nath Fauji alleged the contractor had taken an illegal possession of land, more than what was allotted to him. All agents had decided to go on an indefinite strike from March 15, if the Mandi Board failed to cancel the contract, he said.

Homeopathy seminar

The alumni association of Lord Mahavira Homeopathic College organised a seminar in the college auditorium. Dr LM Khan from National Institute of Homeopathy delivered a lecture, giving tips and tricks to learn Materia Medica. 230 delegates, including college principal Dr Ravinder Kocchar, attended the event.

Health dept collects samples

A team of health department collected samples of food from the central mid-day meal kitchen and Vishal Mega Mart. Food safety officer Ravinder Garg said a team accompanied by Additional Deputy Commissioner Rishipal Singh took samples of pulses and dough from the central kitchen. The team also collected 10 samples of sugar, pulses, red chilli powder, turmeric powder and other eatables from Vishal Mega Mart.

Meat vends to remain closed

On the occasion of Maha Shivratri on Sunday, Police Commissioner Ishwar Singh has ordered all meat vends and slaughter houses to remain closed. He also imposed a ban on cooking of non-vegetarian food in hotels and dhabas.

Awareness camp

On the occasion of Women’s Day, the health department organised an awareness camp at Durga Colony in Dhandari Kurd. Civil Surgeon Dr Subash Batta and ADC (D) Rishipal Singh were present during the camp. Dr Batta made public aware about various health concerns. SMO Dr Parvinder Pal Singh Sidhu said as many as 273 patients were checked during the camp, while 120 blood slides were prepared for ruling out malaria and 42 samples of sputum were collected for TB testing.

Life-saving surgery performed

SNS Pahwa Charitable Hospital announced its first bariatric (weight loss) surgery, conducted on a 45-year-old woman. The surgery, performed by the department of laproscopy, is regarded as life-saving for critically obese persons.

Free eye camp

As many as 250 persons were examined during an eye check-up camp organized by Smyle Blood Donors and Welfare Club, Ludhiana, at Government College, Karamsar. Dr Kashitaj Skool said major eye aliments, including myopia and hypermetropia, were caused due to the lack of concern among the rural and sub-urban people. The camp was inaugurated by Charan Jit Singh Atwal, Speaker, Punjab Vidhan Sabha.

Children visit circus

Around 150 children of National Child Labour Programme Schools were taken to the Bombay Circus by Rotary and Innerwheel Club, Ludhiana Midtown. The children from the underprivileged section the society had fun watching the circus.

Women honoured

Women working in male-dominated professions were honoured by Malwa Sabhyacharak Manch on the occasion of International Women's Day. Porter Maya Devi, ambulance driver Manjeet Kaur and train driver Bhupinder Kaur Alamgir were honoured by the organisation.

Patient needs help

A patient, named Julie, needs financial help. She was diagnosed with multiple diseases at the Christian Medical College and Hospital. Her current bill amounts to Rs 2.35 lakh, with Rs 50,000 still unpaid. At present she requires another surgery that would cost Rs 3 lakh. The family is financially weak and can not afford the operation.

Jan sabha organised

The Aam Aadmi Party, Ludhiana, held a “jan sabha” at Rakh Bagh. Party members held a membership drive and also met the citizens to apprise them of the campaign the party had undertaken against the Aadhaar card scam and proposed property tax.

Ban on parole mooted

Phillaur: Punjab Government is considering a ban on the release of any inmate, sentenced on charges of rape, on parole. This was announced by Punjab Cabinet Minister Sarwan Singh Phillaur while addressing a large gathering at a function organised by the Women Welfare Organization, Phillaur at Sutlej Club.



Man robbed of Rs 2 lakh 
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana March 9
Some unidentified motorcyclists robbed an employee of a scrap dealer of Rs 2 lakh at the Malakpur area today.

The police said the incident took place around 2 pm when Mahesh Kumar, an employee of Khosla Enterprises, was stopped by two bikers. They thrashed him and fled with the money.

The police is suspecting the employee as he is changing his statements frequently. Shavinder Tiwari, an official of Khosla Enterprises, said he handed over Rs 2 lakh to Mahesh and asked him to purchase scrap from Perfect Enterprises on Hambran road. “I asked Mahesh to take my car, but he insisted to go on a motorcycle.”

"The other two employees, who were following Mahesh, told us that he gave lift to somebody and dropped him on the way. The other two employees reached their destination, but Mahesh didn't. They received a call from Mahesh that he had been robbed of the money,” said Tiwari.

Amarjeet Singh, SHO, Haibowal, said: “We are investigating the case from all angles.”

Akali leader accused of thrashing Cong worker

Manpreet Singh Grewal, son of Manjit Kaur Grewal, councillor of Ward No 23, has accused former Akali councillor Ajit Singh Dhillon of thrashing a party worker. He has also accused the police of inaction. "Sunny, a worker of Ajit Singh Dhillon, thrashed our worker Vikas in the market. We have lodged a complaint, but the police has failed to take any action,” said Manpreet. Meanwhile, Ajit Singh Dhillon has denied the allegations. The police said it was probing the matter.

5 booked for fraud

The city police has registered a case against five persons for duping residents on the pretext of doubling their money. The accused have been identified as Manjeet Singh, Balveer Singh, Baljeet Kaur, Baldheer Singh and Joginder Kaur, all residents of Chimani Road, Shimlapuri. The police has nabbed the main accused Manjit Singh.

Opium seized

The city police has recovered 260 grams of opium form Ranjit Singh, a resident of Kamala Nagar, Dhuri Line. ASI Parmjeet Singh said Ranjit Sing was nabbed at a check post.

1 booked for assault

The police has booked a person for allegedly attacking a woman, a resident of Kanganwal village, with a knife. The complainant said Dablu, her neighbour, came in her room and tried to rape her. He also attacked her with knife, she alleged.A case has been registered.

Minor abducted

The police has booked a person for allegedly abducting a minor girl. The complainant, Sehdev Singh, said Muhammad Sarif abducted his daughter on March 6. A case has been registered.

Woman ends life

A 40-year-old woman, who consumed phenyl on Friday, died at the DMCH on Saturday. The deceased has been identified Jasbeer Kaur, a resident of Jasian village.



3 travel agents booked for fraud
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 9
The police has booked three three travel agents, including a woman, for duping a Model Town resident of Rs 18 lakh on the pretext of sending him to the USA.

The accused, Gagan Chadha, Harsimran Kaur, Charanpreet Singh, are residents of New Delhi. The trio had floated an immigration company and duped innocent youths on the pretext of sending them abroad.

The complainant, Krishan Lal, said the accused had asked for Rs 18 lakh to send his son Sukhwinder Kumar to the USA on work permit.

A case under Sections 420-120-IPC 24 IMG Act has been registered against the accused who are yet to be arrested.

Youth ends life

A 22-year-old youth reportedly committed suicide in the Jamalpur area. The deceased has been identified as Ramma Kant.

Ramma used to remain upset after his mother’s death two months ago. His relatives said that on Thursday evening he consumed something and his condition deteriorated. He was rushed to hospital where he died. In another incident, a 70-year-old man died under mysterious circumstances in Haibowal. The deceased has been identified as Varinder Sharma.

He was rushed to a hospital where he died during treatment. 



Harpreet, Ankit declared best athletes 
Our Sports Reporter

Girls participate in a 100-m event on Saturday.
Girls participate in a 100-m event on Saturday. Photos: Inderjeet Verma

Ludhiana, March 9
Ankit Mehta and Harpreet Kaur proved their mettle in the boys’ and girls' sections, respectively, and were declared the best athletes in the Annual Athletics Meet of the GMT College of Education, held here today.

Ankit Mehta clinched four titles while Harpreet Kaur bagged three titles to stamp their superiority over others.

Earlier, Kashmir Singh Thind and Surinder Kaur Thind, chairman and vice-president of the college, declared the meet open in which a large number of students competed in different track and field disciplines.

Dr Shikha Soni, principal of the college, welcomed the guests. She read out the annual sports report highlighting the achievements by the students of the college. Surinder Kaur Thind gave away prizes to the winners and congratulated them.

Results: Boys’: 100m race- Ankit Mehta 1st, Rakesh Kumar 2nd and Sukhdeep Singh 3rd; 200m race- Ankit Mehta 1st, Rakesh Kumar 2nd and Sukhdeep Singh 3rd; Long jump- Ankit Mehta 1st, Guru Trisha 2nd and Sukhdeep Singh 3rd; Shot put- Rohit Gaind 1st, Ankit Mehta 2nd and Sukhdeep Singh 3rd; Discus throw- Rohit Gaind 1st, Sukhdeep Singh 2nd and Guru Trisha 3rd; Javelin throw- Sukhdeep Singh 1st, Varun 2nd and Rakesh Kumar 3rd.

Girls’: 100m race- Harpreet Kaur 1st, Jyoti 2nd and Parminder Kaur 3rd; 200m race- Harpreet Kaur 1st, Raman 2nd and Sulinder Kaur 3rd; Long jump- Harpreet Kaur 1st, Raman 2nd and Rajni 3rd; Shot put- Gagandeep Kaur 1st, Pooja 2nd and Harpreet Kaur 3rd; Discus throw- Suman Lata 1st, Gagandeep Kaur 2nd and Rajwinder Kaur 3rd; Javelin throw- Harpreet Kaur 1st, Nidhi 2nd and Milky 3rd. 



Wrestling runs in his blood
Charanjit Singh Teja
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, March 9
Rajan, a 20-year-old wrestler, is in search of a bright future. The city lad has claimed a number of titles, but his achievements are yet to be acknowledged. Rajan participated in rural wrestling championships and won several titles. He took part in the recently held state-level wrestling championship. Wrestling is in his blood as his father Gian is also a wrestler.

Rajan won 'patka kushti' at Upllan village near Nakoder in Jalandhar district. He was given a cash prize. He practises at Sikander pehalwan's akhara at Alamgeer and Guru Nanak Stadium arena under his father's guidance.

His father said Rajan started practising at the age of eight. "He never misses his practice sessions," he stated. "He has done the city proud. He will scale new heights with his hard work and dedication," said Gian Pehalwan. 



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