L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


It’s peanuts, say poll duty officers
Anupam Bhagria
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 4
Remuneration to be paid to the sector officers, Zonal Magistrates and Income Tax Inspectors deployed on election duty is far less than what is paid to presiding officers, counting supervisors, polling officers, counting assistants and Class IV staff. There is resentment among officers due to this anomaly.

An officer said: "We worked day and night for this crucial duty. We had done our duty with total dedication for more than one and a half months. I was shocked to learn that I will get only Rs 1500 for working more than one and a half months. It sounds like a joke."

Another officer said: "All others are getting much more than us. Presiding officers /counting supervisors will get Rs 350 per day, polling officers/counting assistants Rs 250 per day and class IV staff will get Rs 150 per day or part there of. Similarly, class I/II employees, who were part of video-surveillance teams, video-viewing teams, accounting teams, expenditure monitoring control room and call centre staffs, media certification and monitoring committee, flying squads, static surveillance teams, expenditure monitoring cells, will be paid Rs 1,200 in lump sum. However, class III employees of these teams will be given Rs 1,000 in lump sum and class IV employees Rs 200 per day. Income Tax Inspectors will be paid Rs 1200 in lump sum."

According to a circular issued by Sumit Mukherjee, Secretary of the Election Commission of India, "These rates are payable to the staff for attending training classes, collecting polling materials, etc, and also for attending duty on polling day/counting day."

Interestingly, an officer, who was also put on poll duty during the Vidhan Sabha elections, said: "The remuneration for election duty during the Vidhan Sabha 2012 was paid on March 31 this year. God knows when will we get the remuneration of the Lok Sabha elections?"

What Election Tehsildar says

Sukhdev Singh Bhangu, Election Tehsildar, Ludhiana, said: "No doubt, sector officers had a big responsibility, but remuneration is paid as per the guidelines of the Election Commission of India. In the last Lok Sabha elections, the sector officers were given a lump sum amount of ~800. But this time, it has been increased to ~1,500. In the Vidhan Sabha elections of 2012, the sector officers were paid ~8,400 each. "

EC guidelines on poll duty expenditure

According to the circular issued by Sumit Mukherjee, Secretary of Election Commission of India, the expenditure incurred on poll duties is borne as follows:

  • In case of election to the Lok Sabha, 100% amount is paid by the Union Government.
  • In case of election to a Legislative Assembly, 100% remuneration is paid by the state government concerned.
  • In case of simultaneously elections to the Lok Sabha and a state legislative assembly, the expenditure is shared by the Central and the state government on a 50:50 basis.


Thumping win for Dr Sirsa in Sahit Akademi elections
Tribune News Service

Members cast vote during the elections.
Members cast vote during the elections. Photo: Inderjeet Verma

Ludhiana, May 4
Dr Sukhdev Singh Sirsa defeated his rival, Dr Tejwant Singh Mann, to become the president of the Punjabi Sahit Akademi here today. Dr Sukhdev Singh Sirsa polled 602 votes out of a total of 846 votes in the akademi elections held at Punjabi Bhawan. Dr Sirsa has won by a margin of 369 votes as his rival polled only 233 votes. Eleven votes were cancelled by the returning officer, Dr Surjit Singh Gill.

Meanwhile, Dr Surjit Singh Patiala was elected senior vice-president with 534 votes. His rival Joginder Singh Nirala polled 272 votes.

Newly elected office-bearers of the Punjabi Sahit Akademi.
Newly elected office-bearers of the Punjabi Sahit Akademi. Photo: Inderjeet Verma

Five vice-presidents were also elected. Tarlochan Lochi got the highest 503 votes among the vice-presidents. Surinder Singh Kaley polled 457 votes, Gurcharan Kaur Kocahr 451 votes, Sudarshan Gasso 445 votes and C Markanda polled 342 votes.

Dr Sirsa is Chairman, Schools of Punjabi StuSugarcane juice being prepaed in unhygenic conditions at Ludhiana.

Pic by: Inderjeet vermadies, Panjab University, and had served as general secretary of the akademi for the last six years.

Voters use self-styled "NOTA"

Though there was no provision of the "NOTA" option for voters, many just put a cross each in the columns for both the candidates. The returning officer cancelled 40 such votes which were cast for the post of senior vice-president. Dr Surjit Singh Patiala and Joginder Singh Nirala were in the fray.



ACP gives in-laws clean chit in dowry case
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 4
The Assistant Commissioner of Police (North) has given a "clean-chit" to a couple from Durgapuri, Haibowal, against whom a case of dowry was registered by the Women Cell on a complaint of their daughter-in-law. The inquiry report submitted by the ACP to the Commissioner Police was procured under the Right to Information Act.

According to the report, the ACP (North) has said Urmila Ohri, Surinder Ohri and their son Amit Ohri were found to be of good conduct. The ACP said in fact, the father, brother and other relatives of the girl barged into the Ohris’ house on January 7, 2014, and abused and manhandled the couple. They even tore Urmila Ohri’s clothes and beat up Surinder Ohri with rods. Urmila Ohri got a case lodged against the persons, who barged into her house, with the Division Number 4 police station on January 7.

In his enquiry report, the ACP further writes the case under sections 451, 323, 506 and 34 of the IPC was registered at the Division Number 4 police station against Sushil Kumar, Raju, Goyal, Shambhu and others on a statement of Urmila Ohri. Sushil Kumar's daughter Priyanka is married to Amit Ohri, a resident of Durgapuri, Haibowal. As per recorded statements, there was a minor argument between the husband and the wife (Amit and Priyanka) over some issue, following which the girl called her father and brother. Her relatives reached the home and beat up the Ohris. Amit was not at home when the incident happened.

The ACP, in his enquiry report submitted to the Commissioner Police, further suggests since a case of dowry was going on against Ohris at the Women Cell level, sections 451 and 34 should be removed and 452, 148 and 149 should be added to the case. The report was submitted by the ACP on May 2, 2014.



No check on sale of cut fruits, juice in unhygienic conditions
Manav Mander
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 4
Sale of cut fruits and sugarcane juice extracted in unhygienic conditions continues even as cases of diarrhoea are being reported across the city. Although the Health Department destroys overripe fruits and collects samples of cut fruit being sold in the city, scores of hawkers and vendors can be seen selling these items in various parts of the city.

District Health Officer, Dr Avinash Kumar, said: "The Health Department keeps a check on the quality of fruits and juices being sold in the market. Overripe fruits are destroyed by inspection teams. But there is no ban as such on the sale of cut fruits and juices. These are proving to be a major health hazard during the summer season and people should avoid eating cut fruits and juices being sold in the open," he said.

The exercise of keeping a check on the sale of cut fruits and juices being sold in the open is turning out to be a mere formality. Mushrooming of various shops selling cut fruits in unhygienic conditions has raised many an eyebrow. Meanwhile, cashing in on the rising mercury, a number of fruit stalls have come up in different parts of the city.

"The sale of rotten and cut fruits served under unhygienic conditions pose many health risks like diarrhoea, amoebiasis and hepatitis (particularly hepatitis A and E) that affect the liver. These fruits also attract houseflies and insects that are carriers of diseases," said Dr Harish Singla, a general physician.



Stubble burning goes on unchecked in region
Jaswant Shetra

Jagraon, May 4
Despite a strict ban imposed by the administration on the burning of wheat stubble and repeated appeals by the government and non-governmental organisations to the farming community to avoid it, the practice has been going on unabated. With the harvesting of wheat crop almost complete, farmers are busy preparing their fields for next crop. But a majority of the farmers opt to burn the wheat stubble.

Apart from polluting the environment, the illegal practice of burning stubble has been causing various kinds of other problems. The burning of stubble sometimes leads to fatal accidents as it leads to poor visibility on roads due to the smoke rising from the fields.

Besides, it affects soil fertility. Every time when stubble is burnt in the fields, the soil loses various natural nutrients and other friendly organisms present in it.

Though the government has imposed a ban on the burning of crop residue, the ban has not yielded the desired results due to a lack of strict implementation as well as awareness.

Jagraon SDM Apneet Rayat said: "We have instructed officials to keep a strict vigil and prevent farmers from burning stubble. Besides, we are also holding awareness drives in villages to make farmers aware about the ill-effects of stubble burning." She also appealed to the NGOs to create awareness among the farmers.



Tyres stolen from car at Model Town

Ludhiana, May 4
Parking car even outside your own house is not safe. Thieves stole the tyres of a car parked outside a house in the Model Town area last night. A case has been registered at the Police Chowki, near Bus Stand.

Amarjit Singh, a resident of Model Town, who runs a fruits business, parked his Swift Dzire outside his house last night. He got a shock in the morning when he saw the car sans two tyres. "I woke up at around 6:30 am and went out to get the newspapers and milk. I was shocked to see two tyres of the car missing on the one side. We have got a complaint registered with the Police Chowki, Bus stand," said Amarjit Singh.

Meanwhile, the local residents complained that such incidents had become a routine in the area. Two days ago, the bicycle of a mason was stolen from outside a house and a two-wheeler was stolen from the area a few days ago. Preetmohan Kaur, a local resident, said they suspected the hand of drug-addicts behind these minor thefts. "The police need to step up vigil in the area during night hours," she said. — TNS



Gang of thieves busted
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 4
The Salem Tabri police claim to have busted a gang of five thieves who were involved in several incidents of theft and snatching in the city. A case under sections 380, 382 and 411 has been registered against them at the Salem Tabri police station.

The SHO of the Salem Tabri police station, Kewal Krishan, said the accused, Deepa, a resident of Bhagat Singh Colony, Salem Tabri; Raj Kumar, a resident of Sarup Nagar; Jagjit Singh, a resident of the Shani Dev Temple area in Sarup Nagar; Sunny, a resident of Chitti Colony; and Akash were arrested today. The police recovered seventeen mobile phones and seven LPG cylinders from their possession.

"Preliminary investigation suggests the accused were involved in 30 or 35 thefts. Besides, they have admitted that they were involved in several snatchings reported in the city. They confessed to have sold the booty to Bobby, a resident of Sarup Nagar. The accused have been sent to police remand," said the Salem Tabri SHO.



Poll: Festival of democracy ends

It was on April 30 when the Ludhiana Lok Sabha constituency was humming with a lot of activity. From voters to election staff all remained enthusiastic till polling. Throughout the day, the polling stations remained overcrowded with people from all age groups. And as the polling concluded, a senior citizen standing near a polling booth said, “The festival of democracy is over, so there is pin drop silence now.”

All eyes on May 16

With the polling for the Lok Sabha elections on April 30, the fate of all contestants have been locked in the electronic voting machines (EVMs) and all eyes are now focussed on May 16 when the counting of votes will be done. While the voters await the outcome of elections and formations of a new government in the country with bated breaths, the contenders for Lok Sabha seats also find themselves on tenterhooks. In the meantime, the speculators are having a field day with their predictions which albeit change every day depending on the inclination of the person making claims of victory of a particular candidate and defeat of others in the fray. “Who eventually wins the Ludhiana seat will be known only after the counting of votes takes place and the result is declared. Till then, all those who contested the election can consider themselves as winners,” as an old timer put it.

Putting promotional caps into actual use

Elections in Punjab are over while the results are yet to be declared. Aam Aadmi Party’s (AAP) signature caps were distributed among the supporters which they spotted at every road show and gathering. Now that the elections are over, they are being put into actual use. A small kid was seen wearing this cap to ward off the harsh rays of the sun (see picture). “Somebody gave me this cap and I made my son wear it to save him from the direct rays of the sun,” said the mother of the kid. She was unaware of the fact that this cap represents a political party. “I am just trying to save my son from the heat,” she said with a smile.

Interesting elections

As elections got over, there is an unusual silence in the city. Youngsters in the city said nothing else but the long campaigns by corporates and popularity made the elections as the most talked about topic this time. “I had never followed elections and discussed politics, but these elections have changed my opinion. I have realised that not only are the elections and politics some of the most interesting battles, but are also the most important ones,” said a student. “Politics should actually be keenly followed, as you cannot just give the reigns to just anyone to run your state or your country. One must choose wisely, even if you have to choose the best from the worst,” he said.

Contributed by: Anupam Bhagria, Kuldip Bhatia, Manav Mander and Gurvinder Singh



From schools

Ludhiana: A cultural programme titled ‘Kafila-e-Jashan’ was organised by students of Class III at BCM School, Dugri. Amrita Mangat, consultant, Canadian Universities, was the chief guest on the occasion. Talent was unleashed on the stage through performances such as rock on, sufiana, pyaari betiyan, nazaaron and daastaan-e-sipahi highlighting the numerous issues prevalent in the society and depicting distinct cultures followed by a fashion show. Principal Dr Vandna Shahi appreciated the efforts of the students and teachers.

Mother’s recipe competition

Shri Harkrishan Sahib Public Senior Secondary School, New Janta Nagar, Gill Market, organised a mother’s recipe competition (dedicated to Mothers’ Day) for mothers of students studying in nursery to UKG. Mothers prepared recipes such as boat sandwich, sandwich pizza, biscuit pie, paneer tikka, ras malai, narial barfi, potato crums, mitha christmas tree, bread pizza, etc.

Prizes distributed

Annual prize distribution function was held at Kundan Vidya Mandir (KVM) on Saturday. Dr GS Wander, professor and chief cardiologist, Hero DMC Heart Institute, Ludhiana, was the chief guest on the occasion. The Iron Eagle cadets presented the guard of honour to the chief guest. The function began with a lamp-lighting ceremony. The Goddess of knowledge was evoked with Saraswati Vandana performed by the school students. Introspecting on the need to respect Mother Earth, the Kundanites presented a drama titled ‘solution to pollution’. Around 500 students were honoured for their excellence in academics and other co-scholastic activities during the prize distribution ceremony. Chief guest Dr GS Wander gave away the prizes to the winners and and inspired them to be champions by giving their best.

English-recitation contest

An inter-house English recitation competition was held at Green Land Senior Secondary Public School, Jalandhar Bye Pass, Ludhiana. Students of Classes IX and X participated in the competition. The themes for the event were degrading values and relationships. The poems were based on social satire with humour and irony. Shakti house was announced as the overall winner. Rajesh Rudhra, chairman-cum-director of the chain of Green Land Schools, told the students to imbibe values and keep sanctity of relationships in their life.

Tributes paid

A function was organised in which students of Drishti Dr RC Jain Innovative Senior Secondary School, Narangwal, paid rich tributes to the great souls and visionaries of the school, Dr RC Jain and Gyan Devi, on Saturday. The students of Class XI presented a short play saluting the change brought by eminent leaders, social workers and scientist in the lives of common people. Also, the annual magazine of the school titled ‘Samanvay’ was released on the occasion.

Investiture held

An Investiture ceremony was organised at Sacred Heart Senior Secondary School, BRS Nagar, Ludhiana. Principal Rev Sister Christo proudly announced the school cabinet and house cabinet for the session 2014-2015 and provided sashes as a mark of recognition to the newly elected members. The newly elected team took a pledge to maintain the prestige of the school and enhance its glory towards the zenith.

Freshers’ party

A freshers’ party was organised for the tiny tots at Small Wonders Playway, Ludhiana. Principal Neeti Dewan warmly welcomed the freshers. The event proceeded with a competition to select the Ms and Mr Fresher. The contest was divided into three parts- ramp walk, introduction round and a question and answer session. All children walked on the stage and introduced themselves. They were judged on the basis of their appearance, confidence and spontaneity.

Declamation contest

The 21st inter-school declamation contest was organised by Nehru Sidhant Kender Trust at its Joginder Pall Panday Auditorium in the memory of Pandit Jawahar Lal Nehru. The contest, like every year, received an overwhelming response from the schools in Ludhiana. It was held in three languages-Hindi, Punjabi and English. Fifty-two students from 26 schools took part in the contest. Students spoke with zest and expressed their views confidently on burning topics of day-to-day interest.

Labour Day observed

Phillaur: Workers were honoured at DRV DAV Centenary Public School, Phillaur, on the occasion of Labour Day on Thursday. Students enacted a play depicting the importance of labour. Principal Yogesh Gambhir felicitated the workers and gave away the mementos. He said labours too have a dignity in a civilised society. Nothing is difficult and impossible for hard working people, Gambhir said. He congratulated the helping hands on the occasion.

Pool party for tiny tots

Lehra: Victoria Public Senior Secondary School, Lehra, organised a ‘pool party’ for the tiny tots. The students partied throughout the day enjoying splashing water in the pool. The pool was decorated with colourful balls, toys and umbrellas. The children came dressed in colourful swimsuits, danced on popular songs and enjoyed various water games. Chairman Dev Raj Sofat and principal Samrat Pal Kaur applauded the effort made by the teachers in organising fun-filled activities. — TNS



Ludhiana Scan
World Asthma Day

To mark World Asthma Day on May 6, the local Civil Hospital will be organising events with a common theme ‘You Can Control Your Asthma’. An interactive session with asthmatic students and their parents will be held at DAV Public School from 8.30am to 9.30am and a workshop on the Drug delivery system in asthmatic children will be held at Civil Hospital. Rajinder Gulati, peadiatrician, Civil Hospital, will be the speaker on the occasion. “Asthma is not just a public health problem for developed countries. In developing countries, the incidence of the disease varies greatly. India has an estimated 15 to 20 million asthmatics. Moreover, rough estimates indicate a prevalence of between 10 per cent and 15 per cent in children of five to 11 years of age,” said Dr Gulati.

Gulzar’s feat lauded

Pawan Dewan, president of the District Congress (Urban), said lyricist Gulzar, who started his career in 1956, was the 45th winner of the Dadasaheb Phalke Award, which was constituted in the name of Dadasaheb Phalke - the director of India's first full-length feature film "Raja Harishchandra", made in 1913. Veteran lyricist Gulzar has received the Dadasaheb Phalke Award, the highest honour in cinema given annually by the Central Government for lifetime contribution to the Indian cinema. “We congratulate him for the achievement that is another feather in his cap,” Dewan said.

Boutique opened

You Royal, a designer boutique, opened on Sunday at Rajguru Nagar. Geeta Goyal, a social worker, inaugurated the boutique. She said today women were making their own identity in every field. "Instead of sitting idle, it is good that they are making good use of their time by doing such works,” she said.

Auditions held

The first season of ‘Battle of Dance’, a dance competition, was organised in the city on Sunday. As many as 500 students from various schools gave auditions during the competition, said Shanu Sharma, organiser of the event. She said the winner would be given the prize money of Rs 51,000. Children above five years of age were eligible for the competition. The grand finale of the event would be organised at Nehru Siddhant Kendra. The semi-final would be organised on June 1 and the final would be held on June 15. The finals would be judged by Sudhama Menz and Shri Kant, she added. — TNS



Lok Sabha elections over, voters feel ignored
Mahesh Sharma

Mandi Ahmedgarh, May 4
Voters, who happened to receive rich hospitality from supporters and followers of various Lok Sabha candidates till the day of polling on last Wednesday, have started feeling ignored after the mega event. Contrary to earlier tendency when candidates and their supporters invited them to parties and made every effort to appease voters, they (candidates and supporters) try their best to avoid the public.

Some candidates and their campaigners have left their native localities on the pretext of campaigning for candidates of their respective political parties contesting elections in other states.

While the ignored voters accused the campaigners of being opportunists, the supporters justified the retreat arguing that they had to normalise their routine family and professional lives which had been upset due to exhaustive campaign.

Investigations found that activists and members of various wings of political and social outfits had also started feeling ignored shortly after polling for the Lok Sabha elections was over. While regional leaders and in charges of election campaigns of various candidates had been persistently entertaining them on the pretext of meetings and rallies during the campaign, they (activists) turned out to be uninvited guests on the very next day of polling.

"Though supporters of almost all candidates contesting elections here were ready to do anything for residents of our area before the elections, now they have even stopped taking our telephone calls," said an office-bearer of a Mohalla Sudhar Committee of local town.

Admitting that some voters of his area were supplied liquor and ration by supporters of certain candidates, he said now, they (allured voters) were expecting the same from them.

Jagrup Singh, a youth leader of Dehlon, said he and his associates had been attending their followers during the elections as a goodwill gesture, but had to shift their focus after the polling was over.

"No doubt extra arrangements were made to entertain our guests during the election days. But we can't continue the same as we have to do other jobs also," said Singh.



from colleges
Annual convocation held

Ludhiana: The 14th Annual convocation of the Partap College of Education held in Ludhiana on Sunday. Dr SS Johl, Chancellor, Central University of Punjab, Bathinda, was the chief guest. Principal Dr Balwant Singh read out the annual report of the college highlighting the academics and cultural achievements during the session. He also acquainted one and all with profile and futuristic plans of the college wherein he emphasised upon the need to initiate a new era of excellence and innovation in teaching through continuous self-appraisal, classroom feedback, technology updates, flexible attitude and high professional ethics. Dr SS Johl motivated teachers to be ever-ready for facing challenges of teaching profession, which demand strenuous professional growth and training, updated technical and linguistic competence, critical and intellectual attitude towards their profession. Thirty-five MEd and 200 BEd students were felicitated with degrees.

Scholarship test

Learn to Lead Scholarship Test, 2014, was organised by UEI Global College to felicitate students who have appeared or passed Class XII board exams with interest in professional and job-oriented courses in Hotel Management and BBA. The event was presided over by Navneet Chitkara, director, UEI Global College, Ludhiana. Chitkara said, “UEI Global has come up with a nationwide campaign titled 'Learn to Lead'. The campaign will cover 25,000 schools to reach 5,000,000 students across the nation with the help of 3,000 volunteers. It is aimed at connecting with students currently studying in Class XII aspiring for professional courses. Through this campaign, they will be able to understand the significance of experiential learning.” — TNS



Drizzle brings down temperature
Cool evening a perfect contrast to hot afternoon the city residents had to bear with
Gurvinder Singh
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 4
Residents were in for a pleasant surprise as drizzle in various parts of the city brought down the mercury this evening. While people used umbrellas to save themselves from the sun during the day, in the evening they put these devices to a different use: fending off rain.

They expressed joy over the dip in temperature and windy weather that followed the light showers.

"The drizzle and windy weather has made the evening so pleasant," said Kamini, a resident.

"We went out for a stroll. These are a few days we can savour, as with temperatures soaring it is going to become extremely tough in the coming days," she said.

Aman, a resident of Dugri, said though the month of May had just started, temperatures had already risen too much, making the weather very uncomfortable.

The cool evening was a perfect contrast to the hot day we witnessed, said another resident.

Dr Lakhvir Kaur Dhaliwal, director, School of Climate Change and Agricultural Meteorology, Punjab Agricultural University, said the light showers in various parts of the city were because of the Western disturbances.

“Thunder showers in isolated places are predicted for tomorrow,” she said.



UK-based Punjabi scholar’s works published in Queen’s language
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 4
Two books were released by Punjabi Sabhyachar Akademi at Punjabi Bhawan, Ludhiana, last evening. Dr Pritam Singh Kambo, an eminent Punjabi scholar from the UK, published the English translations of his acclaimed Punjabi works. The books titled ‘Banned Punjabi Poetry: A Critical Study’ and ‘Two are not many’ have been translated by Rajinder Singh while Dr SN Sewak and Prof Niranjan Singh Tasneem have written the forewords.

The book ‘Banned Punjabi Poetry’ is Dr Kambo’s research work about the Punjabi poetry written by the Ghadarites in the US and Canada and by the revolutionaries of different shades in India during the freedom struggle. The British Government was so shaken by the impact of these poems on the masses that they arrested many of the revolutionary poets and banned their poetry. Dr Kambo has paid a befitting tribute to these poets in his research work which took him almost seven years to complete.

Meanwhile, ‘Two Are Not Many’ is a collection of his 21 translated stories. He wants the next generations of Punjabis abroad to remain connected with their culture and literature. The young Punjabis in the UK and many other countries do not know Punjabi. They can have a feel and flavour of literature written by senior writers.

Principal Prem Singh Bajaj released the books.



Beware of testosterone supplements; consult your doctor first
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 4
Men who take testosterone supplements may be putting themselves at increased risk of death, stroke and heart attack besides a decreased sperm count. The issue of misuse of testosterone supplements by the youth was raised by Dr Rupin Shah, consultant andrologist at Mumbai-based Lilavati Hospital, during a recently held international conference at Dayanand Medical College and Hospital.

"Usually, young men wanting to build muscles take testosterone supplements. This can lead to a decreased sperm count," said Dr Shah.

"The best thing that men who are curious about these supplements can do is to talk to their doctors about all risks and benefits, rather than basing their decision on an advertising campaign," said the expert.

The doctor said the problem of testosterone abuse arises as most males are reluctant to talk to their doctors about sexual problems. Dr Shah said the duty of a qualified doctor is to create an environment where patients can easily discuss their problems, instead of getting cheated by quacks.

Dr Shah also stressed on the need to use simple investigations to diagnose the problem of sexual dysfunction among patients

"The doctor should enquire about lifestyle factors, such as job, work pressures, smoking habits, alcohol intake and drug consumption. Physicians should take a detailed sexual history into account to determine circumstances under which the patient is having sexual difficulties," said Dr Shah.

Dr Arvind Goyal, urologist at DMCH, said modern andrology had revolutionised the treatment of male reproductive disorders, taking it away from the clutches of unqualified healers.

What is testosterone?

Testosterone is a male hormone (androgen) made by the body. Most of this hormone is produced in the testes.

It helps in:

  • Maintaining reproductive tissues
  • Stimulating sperm production
  • Stimulating and maintaining sexual function
  • Increasing muscle mass and strength
  • Maintaining bone strength



Care for birds this season
Soaring mercury makes birds an easy prey to dehydration
Anupam Bhagria
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 4
Soaring mercury wreaks havoc with birds in summers. To ensure these feathered creatures don’t fall sick this season, various non-governmental organisations (NGOs) are distributing earthen bowls that need to be filled with water and kept in the open for the birds to consume enough fluids.

Dr Sandeep Jain, chief coordinator of CAPE India and president of People For Animals (PFA), Ludhiana, said: “These days it is very hot. Birds, usually, get their food in wheat fields, but drinking water is not easily available. People must fill water in earthen bowls and place them in the open for these birds to consume. The water should be replaced every day. It will save many birds from dehydration."

Office-bearers of CAPE India are distributing earthen bowls and bird feed among its members to make the drive a success.

Vipan Bhatia, founder president of the NGO Pakshi Sewa Samiti, said the NGO was receiving eagles, parrots, pigeons and doves suffering from dehydration.

“After treating them, we set them free. Caged birds, too, suffer, as at times owners fail to care for them. These birds should be given glucose in water besides multivitamins."

Pakshi Sewa Samiti, too, distributes earthen bowls and holds awareness programmes in schools every year.

“This time we are also using social networking sites for creating awareness on the needs of birds in summers,” said Bhatia.



Punjab fast emerging as heart disease capital of nation: Expert
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 4
Punjab is fast emerging as the heart disease capital of the nation. Intervention cardiologist Dr TS Kler, a Padma Bhushan awardee, made this observation while talking to mediapersons recently. Dr Kler said the protein-rich diet and sedentary lifestyle was leading to heart ailments among Punjabis. He said mortality rate due to heart disease was highest among Punjabi youth in the country.

"Punjab is one of the richest states of the country, having a high per capita income. Since socio-economic status has an important role to play in causing coronary artery disease (CAD), Punjab automatically falls prey to it—that too the worst one,” he said.

CAD was on the rise due to changing lifestyles, lack of exercise, stress and habits such as alcohol consumption and smoking, said the expert.

Dr Kler advised everyone to undergo a comprehensive cardiac test on reaching the age of 35 years.

“Those who are at a high risk should get the test done every year, while other should undergo it once in two years," he said.

Eat healthy, exercise

Diabetes mellitus, hypertension, smoking and obesity are among high risk factors influencing heart diseases. To prevent these, people should eat less fried food, butter and ghee, exercise daily for around 45 minutes and reduce stress. Also, undergo a comprehensive cardiac test on reaching the age of 35 years~

— Dr TS Kler, Intervention cardiologist, Fortis hospital



Raising a cool toast to summer heat
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 4
With the summer in full bloom, sharbats, soft drinks and mocktails are becoming ubiquitous across the city. With changing times, tastes, too, are changing. Gone are the days of good old jaljeera and rose-flavoured traditional drinks. Youngsters, these days, are taking to sweet lime soda and mojito. Iced teas in various flavours including lime and mint are also getting popular these days.

“Mint-flavoured beverages are particularly in demand," says Ram Parsad, who works at a restaurant in a city mall.

He says people demand mocktails and beverages of different flavours.

“Litchi and pineapple mix besides lemonades and strawberry crush flavours are some of the popular combinations these days,” says another attendant at a restaurant.

"I love cold coffees mixed with different flavours besides iced tea. I have also bought sachets of iced tea premix to prepare the beverage at home," says Namit, a student.

Another attendant at a restaurant on Ferozepur Road says people are becoming more aware of the latest trends in food and beverages thanks to the social media.

"Not only the taste, the way drinks are presented matters too,” he says.



Train mishap
Police identify 2 victims
Our Correspondent

Khanna, May 4
The local Railway Police claimed to have identified two bodies of victims of a train accident while the identity of the third victim is yet to be ascertained. One of the deceased, a woman, had been identified as Sarabjit Kaur (32), a resident of Amloh Road, Khanna.

The other victim has been identified as Pawan Kumar (35), a resident of Majri Jattan village.

The third victim, who seems to be a migrant, is yet to be identified.

The police handed over the bodies to their families after the autopsy.

Three persons, including a woman, were killed yesterday when they were cut into pieces by a fast moving train. After Swaraj Express, a Mumbai-bound train coming from Jammu, passed the spot, the railway police found three unidentified bodies on the rail tracks. The train had no stoppage at Khanna.

Ram Pal, ASI, Railway Police, said it seems to be a case of suicide.

However, the families of the identified victims were tight-lipped about the cause of the incident and they had not given any statement in this regard.

He said they were trying to identify the third victim. However, no case was registered in this regard.



Farmers get tips on conservation of resources
Our Correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh, May 4
The state Agricultural Department has launched a comprehensive programme for educating farmers about conservation of resources used in cultivation of traditional crops. Besides organising seminars and workshops, officials and experts of the department held demonstrations at fields and nurseries.

Preparation of germ-free seeds, conservation of water, rational use of fertilisers and pest control were avenues of focus of the programme.

Narinder Singh Benipal and Avtar Singh block agricultural officers at Pakhowal and Birmi led the experts giving tips to farmers of the region.

Referring to outcome of educative meetings held at various villages falling under Ludhiana district, Dr Benipal and Dr Singh said a large number of farmers participated in seminars on preparation of wheat seeds and water conservation.

"Contrary to our worries, a large number of farmers not only attended these meetings and seminar, they took active part in interactive sessions too. Precautions in preparing and preserving wheat seeds, water conservation and subsidies on purchase of agricultural implements were various avenues of their interest," said Benipal added.



Chilled water for passengers
Rly station authorities seek NGOs’ help
Charanjit Singh Teja
Tribune News Service

The 14 water coolers installed on the premises fail to provide chilled water to thousands of passengers who visit the Ludhiana railway station. A file photo

Ludhiana, May 4
Facing a shortage of water coolers at the railway station, the authorities have sought help from non-governmental and religious bodies to set up stalls to provide chilled water to passengers and visitors. Fourteen water coolers were installed on the five platforms at the railway station on April 16. Due to a huge rush, however, these coolers fail to quench the thirst of all passengers.

Although, potable water is available at several points on the premises, in summers the water becomes hot. Most passengers cannot afford to buy packaged water bottles available at kiosks.

Till last year, a few religious bodies and non-governmental organisations (NGOs) used to organise “chhabeel” to provide free chilled water to visitors. This year, however, none of the organisations has come forward to set up stalls for serving water.

Station Superintendent Ravinder Sharma said: “The number of water coolers is insufficient to provide chilled water to thousands of passengers who visit the station. Earlier, some NGOs helped us in providing chilled water to passengers. So we urge local NGOs and religious bodies to come forward for this noble cause.”



Vocational programme for underprivileged launched
Our Correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh, May 4
The local branch of Shree Ram Sharnam has launched an educational and vocational programme for welfare of poor students and underprivileged women. While students are provided with books and stationery items, desirous women are trained and helped to establish their own vocational ventures.

Rakha Ram Verma and Pardeep Sethi, patron and secretary of the unit, respectively, said the programme had been launched to commemorate the contributions of the founder of the organisation, late Rajinder Karir.

While over 500 poor and deserving students had benefited from the programme, around 200 women had become self-reliant after taking training from two sewing training centres being run by the organisation.

Appreciating the role of office-bearers and activists of other social organisations in identification of beneficiaries, Verma and Sethi said the organisation had also played an active role in organising self-help groups of trained women and getting them loan facilities from banks.

Outstanding performers were provided certificates and diplomas by the organisers.



Financial literacy camp

The State Bank of Patiala on Sunday launched SBP mobile financial inclusion services and organised a financial literacy camp at Deep Nagar and Jaipura villages linked to its Doraha branch. The pilot project has been formally launched by Rajeev K Sharma, deputy general manager, Ludhiana zone.

A mobile ATM van covered both villages. Sharma said the mobile ATM van would initially visit both villages (under the FI scheme) to provide information pertaining to various deposit and advances schemes to residents and also redress their queries on banking services every Saturday and the frequency would be increased in future. Good response was received from residents. The new initiative has been well appreciated by residents of both villages. SS Hans, assistant GM, RO-II, Ludhiana; Ajit Singh, sarpanch of Deep Nagar; Nirmal Singh, sarpanch of Jaipura; were among those present. — TNS



Farmers speed up harvesting
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 4
The fear of rains is making farmers in the district speed up harvesting of the wheat crop. The market committee officials say around 90 per cent of the crop has been harvested to date. The procurement of wheat is also at its peak in local markets.

The inclement weather and Lok Sabha elections had delayed the procurement of wheat crop in the local markets. The market committee officials say 95 per cent of the crop brought to mandis has been procured.

Jasbir Singh, secretary, Market Committee, Ludhiana, said: "The procurement is expected to be concluded in five days in local markets. The rural markets will take some more time.”

The shortage of labour in the grain market, meanwhile, has hit the lifting process. Farmers are forced to spend three to five days in the market for the procurement of wheat.



I-T return: Online filing made mandatory for three more categories
Manav Mander
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 4
The Central Board of Direct Taxes (CBDT) has made online filing of return compulsory for three more types of tax payers: partnership firms, political parties and trusts that accumulate their income.

Partnership firms will be filing returns online for the financial year 2013-14 using the ITR-V form, while trusts need to use ITR-VII form. Political parties, too, need to file returns online under Section 139 (4b) of the Act.

Taxation lawyer Jatinder Khurana said: “People, generally, are in the habit of filing their returns on the last dates. Taking this mindset of tax payers in view, the department should create awareness among people on the changes made at 
the earliest.”

Tax payers for whom online filing is already mandatory include all companies and individuals whose income is more than Rs 5 lakh, individuals and Hindu Undivided Family (HUF) who come under the preview of Section 44AB and tax payers who according to rules of transfer pricing under Section 90 or 90(a) or 91 are claiming deductions.



Gold’s import tariff value slashed
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, May 4
The government has cut the import tariff value on gold to USD 422 per 10 grams. With this USD 9 (per 10 grams) cut, gold prices are expected to come down. Gold traders in the city, however, are not too excited. They say the amended policies of the Centre had ruined their business and such a marginal cut did not give them any relief.

Anand Shikri, a gold trader, said problems of gold traders would not decrease until the government exempted them from import duty.

“We have been facing sheer crisis for past one year after amendments made to the policy. This cut will not affect the domestic market. We have no hopes from this government. So, we are waiting for the new government to form,” he said.

Sanjiv, another gold trader said, "In the interest of traders, the government must change the policy to boost gold trade in the domestic market. The government must also make stricter laws to curb smuggling.”



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