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THE TRIBUNE SPECIALS
50 YEARS OF INDEPENDENCE

TERCENTENARY CELEBRATIONS

property dispute
Bid to burn woman alive 
Davinder Kaur undergoes treatment at the Civil Hospital in Jalandhar on Saturday. Jalandhar January 11
A woman was allegedly set on fire by some persons by pouring petrol on her at Mokha village on Saturday afternoon. The victim sustained over 60 per cent burn injuries and was struggling for life at the Civil Hospital here.

Davinder Kaur undergoes treatment at the Civil Hospital in Jalandhar on Saturday. Photo: Sarabjit Singh

Woman delivers baby outside ultrasound room of Civil Hospital
Phagwara, January 11
A controversy was created at the local Civil Hospital when Shamstara (27), wife of Riazul-Haq of Patel Nagar, Phagwara, delivered a male child just in front of the ultrasound room of the hospital due to the alleged negligence of the hospital staff on Friday. According to reports, the woman, the mother of a three-year-old girl , was taken to the hospital by her sister-in-law, Asha, but a staff nurse without examining her properly asked them to go for the ultrasound first.


EARLIER STORIES

Police swings into action over hoax call
Jalandhar January 11
A hoax call by a woman brought the city police on its toes on Saturday late night. On reaching the spot, the police found the call to be hoax.

Students of a Ludhiana school perform giddha during the NRI Sammelan in Jalandhar on Saturday. Ludhiana school students miss hospitality at NRI Sammelan
Jalandhar, January 11
Nearly 20 girls of a giddha team from Government Girls’ Senior Secondary School, Bharat Nagar, Ludhiana, were a harassed lot as they were made to sit without food and refreshments for several hours at the NRI Sammelan here today.
Students of a Ludhiana school perform giddha during the NRI Sammelan in Jalandhar on Saturday. Tribune Photo: Malkiat Singh

Sans funds, traffic police begin Road Safety Week
Jalandhar, January 11
Without any fund allocation and basic equipment like alchometer and speedometer, the Traffic Department has launched the “Road Safety Week” here today. Under this week-long drive, the department will only be conducting awareness programmes with the help of the health department and various NGOs and corporates. It has not planned any challaning drive as it does not have adequate equipment since long.
 A woman cop distributes pamphlets among residents to make them aware about traffic rules; and (right) a policeman pastes a reflector on a vehicle in Jalandhar on Saturday.
A woman cop distributes pamphlets among residents to make them aware about traffic rules; and (right) a policeman pastes a reflector on a vehicle in Jalandhar on Saturday. Photos: Sarabjit Singh

A gang of robbers in police custody in Jalandhar on Saturday. Bid to loot petrol pump foiled, five arrested
Jalandhar, January 11
The city police claimed to have foiled a bid to loot a petrol pump by nabbing five persons on Saturday. The police also recovered iron rods and sharp-edged weapons from the miscreants.




A gang of robbers in police custody in Jalandhar on Saturday. A Tribune Photograph

AAP gets overwhelming response in Punjab
Jalandhar, January 11
The AAP held its first meeting at Desh Bhagat Yadgaar Hall here today. Addressing a packed house AAP’s national executive member Sanjay Singh said the membership of an additional 1,000 (to the 20,000 district members) people on the first day of the free membership drive of the AAP across the nation.

Vendors meet Sukhbir Badal over user charges row
 The Maqsunda sabzi mandi wears a deserted look as labourers are on strike against daily user charges in Jalandhar on Saturday. Jalandhar, January 11
Over 300 vendors continued their protest at the city’s main Maqsudan Mandi against the levy of new daily user charges from them. Delegation of the Artiyas Association and Labour Union today met Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal at NRI Sammelan who assured them of an amicable solution.

The Maqsunda sabzi mandi wears a deserted look as labourers are on strike against daily user charges in Jalandhar on Saturday. Photo: Sarabjit Singh

fake certificate controversy
Headmasters' assn refutes lecturers' allegations
Jalandhar, January 11
Brij Mohan, president, Government School Headmaster Association (Punjab), and general secretary Sukhvinder Singh said the claim of the the lecturers’ union that headmasters were appointed despite lacking in experience or proper degrees was false. They said they would take a legal recourse on the matter and will agitate on January 25, if their demands are not met.

Congmen held, released
Phagwara, January 11
Several Congressmen, including former minister Joginder Singh Maan and PPCC member Balbir Raja Sodhi, were rounded up by the police to prevent them from demonstrating before the NRI Sammelan today. Maan, along with his supporters was taken to Jalandhar, while Sodhi and his supporters were stopped by the police near Royal Kings Resorts, when they were on their way to Bath Castle to demonstrate against Majithia. Later on, all Congressmen were freed in the evening.

Robbers snatch purse
Phagwara, January 11
Two unidentified motorcycle-borne robbers snatched a purse from a bank manager containing Rs 20,000, an ATM card and a mobile phone last night. She has been identified as Sukhwinder Kaur, a resident of Model Town.





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property dispute
Bid to burn woman alive 
Sustains 60 per cent burn injuries; struggles for life at hospital 
Nikhil Bhardwaj
Tribune News Service

Jalandhar January 11
A woman was allegedly set on fire by some persons by pouring petrol on her at Mokha village on Saturday afternoon. The victim sustained over 60 per cent burn injuries and was struggling for life at the Civil Hospital here.

Interestingly, the woman was set on fire with the petrol which she had brought to put tractor of the other party on fire to prevent them from ploughing the disputed agricultural land.Kuldip Singh, husband of Davinder Kaur, the victim, said they had a dispute with their relative Balbir over 24 acres of agriculture land and the court had passed stay orders on its possession.

Despite the court orders, Balbir, her daughter Harpreet and others had planned to take the possession of the disputed land by ploughing it. “When my wife came to know that Balbir had brought a tractor to plough the land, she, in anger, took out a bottle of petrol from the scooter and pledged to set their tractor on fire. The moment she reached the spot, Balbir and his accomplices snatched the bottle and poured it on my wife,” he said. Despite setting her wife on fire, Kuldip claimed that Balbir and his accomplices, instead of saving her, continued to plough the fields. Her wife was rescued by some other people and they informed the Maqsudan police.

Kuldeep Singh alleged the daughter of Balbir had also videographed the entire incident and urged the police to look for the video footage. He said when he reached on the spot, the police were taking her wife to the hospital. The victim told reporters that she was set on fire by Balbir. Inspector Pyara Singh said the statement of the victim was recorded by JMIC Harpreet Singh and a case would be registered against the accused. "Meanwhile, raids are on to nab the accused," The SHO added. 

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Woman delivers baby outside ultrasound room of Civil Hospital
Was in labour pain when asked to bring medical file, ID proof 
Ashok Kaura

Phagwara, January 11
A controversy was created at the local Civil Hospital when Shamstara (27), wife of Riazul-Haq of Patel Nagar, Phagwara, delivered a male child just in front of the ultrasound room of the hospital due to the alleged negligence of the hospital staff on Friday. According to reports, the woman, the mother of a three-year-old girl , was taken to the hospital by her sister-in-law, Asha, but a staff nurse without examining her properly asked them to go for the ultrasound first.

The woman with labour pain went to the ultrasound room but the hospital staff did not cooperate with her and asked her relative Asha to wait outside the room and bring the medical file with xerox copies, along with their identity proof.

Meanwhile, the woman crying with labour pain fell down and delivered a male child. Several patients and their attendants raised an alarm for her help. When contacted, Senior Medical Officer Dr Jaswinder Singh said he was away in Kapurthala for an official meeting yesterday and had started an enquiry into the matter. The SMO saidhe had recorded the statements of the staff concerned. He said no careless person would be spared.

While commenting over the issue, Dr Balbir Singh, Civil Surgeon, Kapurthala, said over the phone that he had ordered a departmental inquiry into the issue to find out errors in the working of the Civil Hospital staff. The CMO said District Family Planning Officer Dr Kewal Ram had been appointed as an inquiry officer in the case would submit a report within a week. Meanwhile, the mother and the infant are in a good health. 

officialspeak

I have ordered a departmental inquiry to find out errors in the working of the Civil Hospital. District Family Planning Officer Dr Kewal Ram has been appointed as an inquiry officer in the case and he will submit a report regarding it within a week. Negligence will not be tolerated.
—Dr Balbir Singh, Civil Surgeon, Kapurthala

I was away in Kapurthala for an official meeting yesterday and had started an inquiry into the matter. Statements of the staff concerned have been recorded and no careless staff would be spared.
—Dr Jaswinder Singh, Senior Medical Officer

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Police swings into action over hoax call
Tribune News Service

Jalandhar January 11
A hoax call by a woman brought the city police on its toes on Saturday late night. On reaching the spot, the police found the call to be hoax.

The incident took place at 7.45 pm when the police control room received a call from a woman, who informed them that someone had sustained bullet injuries and was lying injured near Phagwara Gate.

The control room officials immediately informed the Police Division Number 3. The policemen reached the spot in a few minutes and started searching the area but they found nothing. Meanwhile, they met the woman who made a phone call to the police control room and informed about the firing incident.

Sukhvir Singh, Station House Officer, Division Number 3, said during the investigation, they found that the woman was mentally upset and had made a hoax call. Residents also apprised the police of the woman's condition.

The SHO said the woman also used to file fake complaints against the residents of the locality, but the police didn’t take her seriously. Asked if the police would initiate legal proceedings against the woman, the SHO said since woman was mentally upset, they were not registering any case against her. 

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Ludhiana school students miss hospitality at NRI Sammelan
Made to sit for eight hours without food, refreshments; had come to the city to perform giddha during the summit 
Deepkamal Kaur
Tribune News Service

Jalandhar, January 11
Nearly 20 girls of a giddha team from Government Girls’ Senior Secondary School, Bharat Nagar, Ludhiana, were a harassed lot as they were made to sit without food and refreshments for several hours at the NRI Sammelan here today.

The girls, who had started from their place as early as 7 am to reach the venue at 8:45 am, said they were made to wait for eight hours at 4:45 am.

“Nobody asked us for a glass of water or even a cup of tea till we could not bear it anymore and raised a hue and cry at 2:30 pm. There is a whole battery of officials from the entire state to ensure good hospitality but we were not even offered chairs,” said the girls squatting on the floor of the pathway to the entrance of the hall at Bath Castle.

Even the staff accompanying the girls expressed their helplessness as they said that they were not aware as to when the performance of the girls was scheduled to take place. “We thought it would be at the time of reception. Had we been aware that the girls have to perform at the end of the event, we would have come late and made arrangements accordingly," a teacher said.

The visitors seeing the harassment of the girls said, “It is demeaning to make them dance in the lunch enclosure. The girls should have been asked to perform on the stage at the start or the conclusion of the programme. This is a sheer harassment." Another official commented, “I really wonder whose idea to bring them here to perform from Ludhiana when we have hundreds of schools in Jalandhar.”

Varun Roojam, Deputy Commissioner, Jalandhar, said, “The decision to have a performance by a gidda team from Ludhiana was taken by the NRI Department. They had planned and sent the team for the same." 

Nobody asked us for a glass of water or even a cup of tea till we could not bear it anymore and raised a hue and cry at 2:30 pm. There is a whole battery of officials from the entire state to ensure good hospitality here but we were not even offered chairs.
— Ludhiana school students

“The decision to have a performance by a giddha team from Ludhiana was taken by the NRI Department. They had planned and sent the team for the same.
— Varun Roojam, deputy commissioner, jalandhar

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Sans funds, traffic police begin Road Safety Week
Rachna Khaira
Tribune News Service

Jalandhar, January 11
Without any fund allocation and basic equipment like alchometer and speedometer, the Traffic Department has launched the “Road Safety Week” here today. Under this week-long drive, the department will only be conducting awareness programmes with the help of the health department and various NGOs and corporates. It has not planned any challaning drive as it does not have adequate equipment since long.

“So far no funds have specially been allocated for the Road safety Week, but we could get money from the Commissioner’s fund as and when we require. We have planned medical camp with the health department and distributed reflectors to commercial vehicles today which were donated by a Ludhiana-based corporate,” said Paramjit Singh, ADCP, Traffic Police.

The Jalandhar Tribune had recently highlighted the sad plight of the traffic department which do not have speedometer to check the speed of overspeeding vehicles, the main cause of fatal accidents in the city. The department just have two alcohol meters which are quite insufficient for such a huge population. Without having such basic equipment, the department is in no way able to conduct special challaning drive in the city to make people aware about various traffic violations committed by them sometimes in ignorance.

“This is just the show off. How can you celebrate Road Safety Week without a budget and necessary equipment? The police should have first build the necessary infrastructure for effective traffic management and then should have gone ahead with the celebrations,” said Surinder Saini, an activist.

So far in the absence of any funds, the department has planned only one drawing competition for the children for which it has announced an award of Rs 5,000. “We will request the Police Commissioner to allocate the prize money from his fund,” said an official of the department.

Surprisingly, the traffic department is known to be the earning department for the police. In 2013, the department had earned around Rs 4.63 crore from 3.33 lakh challans. Still the department has been asked to celebrate the Road Safety Week without any funds. No special promotions, challening drives, public interaction surveys or special training to the traffic cops have been planned in the week-long itenary. 

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Bid to loot petrol pump foiled, five arrested

Jalandhar, January 11
The city police claimed to have foiled a bid to loot a petrol pump by nabbing five persons on Saturday. The police also recovered iron rods and sharp-edged weapons from the miscreants.

The accused have been identified as Subodh Kumar, Manoj, Sunil, Dharmesh and Sunil Kumar. Subodh is a kingpin of the gang.

Inspector Balbir Singh had got the information that five armed robbers were making a strategy to loot a petrol pump in Kalia Colony. Accordingly a raid was conducted and the accused were nabbed.

Apart from the weapons, the police also recovered 1,150 gm of intoxicant powder from them.

On interrogation, it came to the fore that Subodh was wanted in more than 12 cases of theft, loot and snatching registered at Rama Mandi police station, while remaining accused were also history-sheeter.

The police said the accused also confessed to have committed burglary in Kalia Colony last month and burgled iron pipeswere also seized from them.

The city has witnessed around nine burglaries in the last week but not a single incident have been solved by the police. Despite the tall claims of police and launching of night domination, burglars are playing hide and seek with the city police. On January four burglars struck at four houses in the Quilla Mohala locality. Few days later, thieves had again struck at four houses in Ladewali locality. City police, which was already groping in the dark to solve the aforesaid burglaries, got another jerk with burglary at jewellry shop last night.— TNS

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AAP gets overwhelming response in Punjab
Tribune News Service

Jalandhar, January 11
The AAP held its first meeting at Desh Bhagat Yadgaar Hall here today.

Addressing a packed house AAP’s national executive member Sanjay Singh said the membership of an additional 1,000 (to the 20,000 district members) people on the first day of the free membership drive of the AAP across the nation.

Dr Jasbir Rishi, professor, Hans Raj Mahila Maha Vidyalaya and senior newsreader, Jalandhar Doordarshan, said, “We have been watching the Congress and SAD-BJP governments ruling Punjab for years. The SAD-BJP combine being voted to power for a second term spelled trouble.”

“The traditional fabric of the education system has fallen prey to contract system. Ministers sit oblivious of lapsing grants. AAP’s coming is the first time the aam admi has found an alternative. We need educated people to govern us. The AAP is aiming for that. I want to play my part in the change, whatever way I can,” she added.

Actor and singer Jassi Jasraj, who has sung like Tezaab 1984, National Village was also among the people who became a part of the Aam Admi party yesterday, he says, “I have been highlighting the aam admi’s issues with my music and films and Punjab’s aam admi is in a spot right now. The rich run the petrol pumps and wine shops and the common man languishes on the street. So I have found hope in Kejriwal’s AAP.”

“We have given so many years to other parties, the AAP should get at least five. I would be happy with whatever role the party chooses for me,” he adds. Former president Giani Zail Singh’s grandson Kultar Singh and retired IRS officer Lekh Raj Narayan also joined the AAP yesterday. Heads of various teachers’ unions including Professor HS Walia, head of the Punjab and Chandigarh College Teachers’ Union (PCCTU) and district president of the union Sukhdev Singh Randhawa among other educationists also joined.

PCCTU area secretary Dr Tejinder Virli and professor Hemant Sharma of DAV College Jalandhar have been a part of Kejriwal’s movement for the past two years.

Dr Virli had also translated Kejriwal’s pamphlet on the Jan Lokpal in Punjabi. “There is a reason for people’s shift towards the AAP.

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Vendors meet Sukhbir Badal over user charges row

Jalandhar, January 11
Over 300 vendors continued their protest at the city’s main Maqsudan Mandi against the levy of new daily user charges from them. Delegation of the Artiyas Association and Labour Union today met Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal at NRI Sammelan who assured them of an amicable solution.

Simranjit Singh, president of the Youth Arityas Association said Dy CM had asked Cantonment MLA Pargat Singh to hold meeting with the labour union tomorrow and provide possible solution to them.

If MLA would not pay heed to their demands, labour union would continue their protest, Singh warned.

The vendors with a cart have been asked to pay up Rs 100 a day and those without cart Rs 75 daily for using Rs 5 feet stretch. Even those selling produce in their own tempo are being asked to pay Rs 100 daily, those coming on trolley Rs 300 per day.

Vendors, who are in protest mode, have decided not to purchase any produce from the wholesellers who had come to the mandi with truck loads of fruits and vegetables. They did not even open their yesterday’s produce for sale and the mandi remained shut and buyers had to go back making purchases from retail outlets and hawkers elsewhere at the exorbitant prices.

Protestors said Ludhiana-based firm had reportedly hired for collection of levies on contract basis. — TNS

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fake certificate controversy
Headmasters' assn refutes lecturers' allegations
Tribune News Service

Jalandhar, January 11
Brij Mohan, president, Government School Headmaster Association (Punjab), and general secretary Sukhvinder Singh said the claim of the the lecturers’ union that headmasters were appointed despite lacking in experience or proper degrees was false. They said they would take a legal recourse on the matter and will agitate on January 25, if their demands are not met.

They said the lecturers’ union was alleging that 95 per cent of the headmasters’ experience certificates were fake whereas 74 per cent of the headmasters had experience certificates from government schools.

They alleged that the list of 23 headmasters, which was being released on the basis of these allegations, was made without proper investigation.

The union said in 2006, headmasters were appointed as per the advertisement released in various newspapers on 21.10.2006 under The Punjab State Education Class III (school cadre), Service (first amendment) Rules, 1995 .

They claimed that the appointments were made as per merit and all the appointed headmasters fulfilled the conditions for the appointment .

The union said in December 2013, the headmasters had completed seven years’ experience and as per the orders of the High Court their promotions were due by January 31, 2014. They alleged that the lecturers’ union was making attempts to prevent these promotions and that is why the allegations regarding the experience certificates were being made.

They alleged that the list of 23 headmasters was being released under the pressure from the lectures’ union. The union said they would approach the HC if an investigation into lecturers' claim was not ordered by January 15.

The union demanded lecturers first be made deputy principals before being promoted straight to the post of principals, degree holder lecturers from deemed/fake universities be reverted and and lecturers working at offices be recalled to end students' suffering. 

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Congmen held, released
Our Correspondent

Phagwara, January 11
Several Congressmen, including former minister Joginder Singh Maan and PPCC member Balbir Raja Sodhi, were rounded up by the police to prevent them from demonstrating before the NRI Sammelan today. Maan, along with his supporters was taken to Jalandhar, while Sodhi and his supporters were stopped by the police near Royal Kings Resorts, when they were on their way to Bath Castle to demonstrate against Majithia. Later on, all Congressmen were freed in the evening.

Meanwhile, Markfed Chairman Jarnail Singh Wahid has strongly condemned the Congress for CBI probe against Revenue Minister Bikramjit Singh Majithia, while former Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh is speaking against this demand and saying that there is no need of CBI enquiry and he has full faith in the police investigations. Wahid also condemned the

“Punjab Bandh” call given by PPCC president Partap Singh Bajwa and said communal harmony would be maintained at all cost.

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Robbers snatch purse
Our Correspondent

Phagwara, January 11
Two unidentified motorcycle-borne robbers snatched a purse from a bank manager containing Rs 20,000, an ATM card and a mobile phone last night. She has been identified as Sukhwinder Kaur, a resident of Model Town.

She was returning home on scooter when the robbers struck, robbed and succeeded to flee. The police have registered a case.

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Feedback
Badly designed flyover

The flyover at BMC Chowk, Jalandhar, has a faulty design. It caters to barely 10 per cent of traffic, while 90 per cent still passes under the flyover with snarls being faced. One comes across a long row of vehicles and the green signal often turns red again before one’s turn to cross comes.

Many times while waiting at the red signal under the flyover, I notice hardly 5 or 6 vehicles passing over the flyover while within the same duration at least 50 cars gather up at the bottom. That shows that the traffic volume at the bottom is about 10 times more than that on the flyover. The flyover is thus serving little purpose.

Some people had cautioned the authorities about its faulty design but they chose to ignore it. Had they taken steps to rectify the faulty design in the initial stages, it would have saved commuters daily harassment. The traffic police is doing its best to manage the bad situation, but permanent solution has to be found to overcome the traffic chaos seen daily at the BMC crossing.

WG CDR CL SEHGAL (Retd), Jalandhar

Traffic related problems

Traffic related problems in Jalandhar have grown manyfold, especially in the past one year. The authorities have taken many a step, but they're not sufficient. First, the proposal of a one-way traffic circuit to ease the alarming growth of traffic at Dr BR Ambedkar and Guru Nanak Mission Chowk. The construction of flyovers at these sites won't be a solution keeping in mind the future. The Municipal Corporation, Jalandhar, is doing a lot for the city by planting exotic plants at major city points to enhance the green belt. But they should prefer trees which provide shade rather than plants.

In terms of traffic sense, the authorities are helpless until we've the intent to bring the change. Giving an excuse of being a developing nation won't suffice. We need to come up with a road network and traffic sense which not only Indian cities and states, but foreign nations too will look forward to as an example. Clean roads, proper road markings and signs must not remain as foreign delicacies. Funds too must not be an excuse as it is a one-time investment and will pay off to our city's image.

RANDEEP SINGH, Jalandhar

Jalandhar Tribune invites feedback from its readers on issues of public concern relating to Jalandhar, Phagwara, Kapurthala and the nearby  areas. Readers  can email their  views to

[email protected] gmail.com

They can also send their views to: Feedback, Jalandhar Tribune, Sector 29, Chandigarh - 160029. Letters sent by post must mention 'Feedback for Jalandhar Tribune' on the envelope and it should be signed and must contain the address and telephone number of the sender. It should not be more than  150 words.

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