L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


3 suspected diarrhoea deaths keep admn on toes
Our Correspondent

Malaudh, July 6
Taking serious notice of three suspected deaths due to diarrhoea and the spread of disease in a Dalit locality of Sehora village in Payal subdivision, Deputy Commissioner, Ludhiana, Rajat Aggarwal today visited the locality. He has directed the health officials to speed up preventive measures to check the spread of the disease.

Rajat Aggarwal, Deputy Commissioner, Ludhiana, inspects records and medicines related to diarrhoea cases at a check-up camp.
Rajat Aggarwal, Deputy Commissioner, Ludhiana, inspects records and medicines related to diarrhoea cases at a check-up camp. A Tribune Photograph

Citing contaminated water supply as a major factor behind the situation, the administration has directed the authorities in the Public Health Department to ensure the supply of safe water to the residents of the village and the surrounding localities.

The deputy commissioner also announced compensation to the families of the deceased in case diarrhoea is found to be the reason behind the deaths. He has asked the health authorities to ascertain the cause of death of a 10-day-old infant and two women, Bhanno and Amarjit Kaur.

Investigations have revealed around 1,500 residents of Ravidass Basti at Sehora village have been suffering from diarrhoea due to the alleged supply of contaminated water to the area. Illegal water connections and laying water pipes through drains were identified as major reasons behind the contamination of the water supply.

Unavailability of proper medical care has made the matters worse. Aggarwal has asked District Revenue Officer (DRO) Mukesh Sharma to supervise the arrangements at the locality. He directed Civil Surgeon Subash Batta to deploy extra staff at the village dispensary and the primary health centre at Payal so suspected patients could receive treatment round the clock.

The deputy commissioner directed Public Health Department to disconnect all unauthorised water connection immediately.

Acknowledging the spread of the disease, the DRO said the situation had been brought under control and adequate arrangements were being made to check the spread of the disease. To cope with any emergency, two fully equipped ambulances have been stationed at the villages and eight teams of paramedical staff constituted.

Though the details of contaminants and pathogens found in the samples of water collected from various houses are yet to be received, the supply of water from the village tank has been stopped till the Health Department okays the quality of the water. Three water tankers carrying safe water have been arranged for the residents.

Referring to information received from the health authorities, the DRO acknowledged that one out of the three deaths was due to diarrhoea and 18 suspected patients were being admitted to the government health centres. He said the deputy commissioner had warned the officials concerned against negligence.

Senior officials in the Public Health Department would camp at the village to supervise the arrangements till the disease is eradicated in the locality.

Meanwhile, the office-bearers and activists of the Shaheed Bhagat Singh Naujwan Sabha urged the administration to make sure the civic body provided basic amenities to the residents of the locality.

Docs advise precaution in rainy season

Ludhiana, July 6
With the onset of the rainy season, chances of water-borne diseases increase manifold due to water contamination. Doctors feel residents need to adopt preventive measures to avoid such diseases or else diarrhoea could prove fatal in severe cases.

According to a report of UNICEF, around 4 billion cases of diarrhoea are reported every year worldwide. Of them, 1.8 million die and more than 90 per cent of the deceased children (1.6 million) are under five years of age. Repeated diarrhoea makes children vulnerable to other diseases and causes malnutrition. The doctors suggest the simple act of washing hands with soap and water could cut chances of diarrhoea by 30 per cent. — TNS


* One should not use herbs in treatment

* Avoid dairy products

* Take precautions

* Avoid drinks excess in sugar

* Avoid fatty, spicy foods


* Consume safe water

* Take bland diet

* Wash hands regularly

* Maintain proper hygiene

* Take lot of liquid

* Visit doctor without delay


Servant decamps with cash, ornaments
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 6
A domestic help, along with his five accomplices, took a fellow servant hostage and stole cash and gold ornaments from his master’s house in Partap Singh Wala on Hambran Road here.

Sunil Sood, a resident of Partap Singh Wala on Hambran Road and childhood friend of former Director-General of Police PS Gill, told the police that he was away to Chandigarh yesterday. His wife, who is a schoolteacher, was also not at home.

Sood told the police that one of his servants, Keshav Bahadur, along with his accomplices, reached his home and assaulted his servant Ram Bahadur. After taking Ram Bahadur hostage, the accused stole cash and vaulables from almirahs lying in the house. Ram Bahadur suffered multiple injuries in the attack. He was rushed to the hospital.



Stray dogs stalk Neem Wala area residents
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 6
Two girls were bitten by stray dogs in the Neem Wala area here yesterday. Sonu and Guriya were playing outside their houses in the area when a pack of dogs badly bit them. The local residents rescued the two girls who are 12 year old. They were taken to the Civil Hospital. They were discharged after treatment.

Meanwhile, the local residents said more than 30 residents had been bitten by stray dogs in the area in the last 15 days. Two months ago, Sukhmanpreet Kaur, Sonu’s mother, was also bitten by stray dogs. The repeated complaints of the residents have fallen on deaf ears.

The problem of stray dogs is not limited to this particular area but packs of ferocious stray dogs rule the city roads.

The BJP councilor, Inder Aggarwal, said the authorities were not bothered about the plight of innocent residents. “Hundreds of cases of dog bite have taken place in the last about eight months. Some of them go unreported. There has to be some solution to the problem but here none seems to be worried. We will raise our voice at the General House meeting,” said Aggarwal.

Congress councillor Gurpreet Gogi said the menace of stray dogs had reached alarming proportions. “The authorities concerned had claimed to start the stray dog-sterilisation project in May. So many deadlines have passed but the project has not been started yet,” said Gogi.

The Senior Veterinary Officer at the MC, Dr YP Singh, said work on the project was on. “We are helpless. Construction work has to be carried out by the building branch. The building branch officials were contacted but they said nobody had asked them to construct rooms,” said Dr Singh.

The contractor, who has been awarded the construction of kennels and a building on the Haibowal road, has missed the deadline. Besides, it was learnt that the contract of sterilising stray dogs awarded to a Hydrabad-based company has been scrapped.



Soccer fever grips city
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 6
As FIFA World Cup is on, the local fans avidly watch every football match. Many of the youngsters have found the game to be their favourite sport.

Ruhesh (15), who had never followed football seriously earlier, says football has now become his favourite sport. Not only does he religiously follow the world cup matches, he has also started playing football with his friends, he says.

Ankur Verma says he stays awake till late night to watch the matches live. “The matches are extremely interesting. Football is a fast and power-packed game and the adrenalin rush and unpredictability of the game makes it all the more interesting. It is difficult to take eyes off the TV while you are watching a football match,” he says.

The others say football is the most “natural sport” and is the most popular game in the world. “Give a ball to a child and he will hit it with his foot. This is probably the most instinctive of the sports after running, and this probably is the reason for its popularity,” says Sahil, a student.

Many fans say they dream to see India play in the World Cup. “I pray for India to win the Cricket World Cup as also to see our country play in the FIFA World Cup,” says another youngster, adding that he loves both cricket and football.

Many restaurants are screening the FIFA World Cup matches. Cakes and bakery items themed on the World Cup are in demand in the city.

Kunal Arora, from a bakery, said they keep getting orders for cakes and food made on the theme of the FIFA World Cup. “We are screening FIFA matches and people love watching these at our restaurant,” he added.



Office of Addl Deputy Commissioner (D) stinks
Anupam Bhagria
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 6
Dark and dingy corridor on the second floor of the building that houses the office of the Additional Deputy Commissioner (Development) has become a junk yard. Suffocating smell of record files lying on one side give tough time to visitors. The broken doors of toilets and running taps further try their patience.

An employee said: “Sometimes the corridor smells so bad that it become difficult for us to sit here. But we have no option. We have to shut the doors to keep smell at bay.”

There is a shortage of class IV employees, so proper cleanliness at the office is a distant dream, said another employee. The employee said: “Sometimes, we ourselves clean our office.”

The old record files and sheets of clothes have been kept in the corridor. Papers of some of these files are covered in layers of dust. Unused desert coolers and broken almirahs occupy the other side of the corridor. The place looks like a junk yard.

Avtar Singh, Assistant Field Project Officer at the office, said: “Repair of toilets on the first floor is under way. We will also get the toilets on the second floor repaired soon.”

Rajat Aggarwal, Deputy Commissioner, Ludhiana, said: “We have invited a tender for the disposal of the junk. I will see to it what can be disposed of. As far the record files are concerned, we have to keep some important records. We will get it checked and decide accordingly.”



Clogged drains irk residents in Jagraon
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, July 6
The alleged lethargic approach of the Jagraon Municipal Council in cleaning the drains of the area has made the local residents skeptical of its preparation to tackle the expected heavy rains in the near future.

A drain choked with garbage on Disposal Road in Jagraon.
A drain choked with garbage on Disposal Road in Jagraon. A tribune photograph

Residents living in the localities around Ganda Nullah claimed that majority of the drains are filthy and hence block the smooth flow of water during the rain.

“The drains are still full of filth. The authorities seem to have learnt no lesson from past, when several parts of the town were flooded with rain water last year,” said Ankush Kumar, a resident of Disposal Road.

The alleged failure of the Municipal Council in cleaning the drains has also irked the traders of Old Grain Market. The market is situated at a relatively lower part of the town and therefore, water gets accumulated in the market causing inconvenience to commuters. Rain water also enters some of the shops. Traders claimed that they run into losses due to this very reason.

“The MC has failed to make adequate efforts to deal with water logging during the rainy season. They must initiate the cleaning process at the earliest,” said Amrinder Singh, a commission agent at Old Grain Market, Jagraon.

Besides, Old Grain Market, other areas such as Old Sabzi Mandi Road, Kamal Chowk, Sadan Market, Rani Jhansi Chowk, Malak Road are too at risk of water logging.

The executive officer, Jagraon Municipal Council, Davinder Singh Toor, said the MC has already started the work of cleaning drains to avoid any untoward situation.

“The cleaning process will be completed very soon,” said Toor. 



Goods worth lakhs destroyed in fire
Our Correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh, July 6
Fire broke out at cattle feed factory on the Jagera road here last night. The exact cause of the outbreak is yet to be ascertained. Rohit Karir, partner of Dina Nath and Sons, firm manufacturing cattle feed, said goods worth lakhs were destroyed in the mishap.

A huge stock of de oiled cake (DOC) was destroyed in the incident.

The fire was first noticed by a labourer early in the morning.

Coordinated rescue operation by residents of the area and staff of fire brigade from Shryans Industries Limited prevented the fire from spreading to nearby factories. 



NRIs, industrial units vow to save environment

Ahmedgarh, July 6
Office-bearers and activists of various organisations have announced to launch a coordinated movement to check on the degradation of environment.

Saplings of ornamental plants and fruiting trees will be planted at vacant places besides educating masses about causes and consequences of the reckless exploitation of non-renewable resources.

Management committees of industrial units and other trade organisations vowed to put in enough efforts to achieve the desired results under the mandatory corporate social responsibility scheme.

Maintaining that drastic measures have to be taken to reverse adverse affects of urbanisation of quality of environment, executive director of the Shryans Group of Industries Malikpur Anil Aggarwal claimed that the management of the corporate group has already directed concerned staff to ensure that no harm is caused due to activities of various units.

Aggarwal said the organisation has updated effluent treatment plants and are recovering plants so that no harm is caused to the environment. Rajnish Oswal, chairman and managing director of the unit, said besides supporting movement to preserve environment through plantation, the organisation would also help social organisations undertaking afforestation programme. Dr Rajinder Mittal, chairman, Social Welfare Organisation, and Lalit Kaura, president, Rotary Club, said office-bearers and activists of their organisations have already initiated process to prevent degradation of environment through recycling of materials and improvement in solid waste management by the civic body.

“Teams of volunteers, separately led by former president Pardeep Sethi, secretary Dr Vikas Hind and Pardeep Sharda organised nukad meetings in their respective areas to apprise residents of causes and consequences of environmental degradation,” saidKaura.

NRIs also contributed their share in the noble cause. Vikram Joshi from Canada and Uttam Punj from Sydney were among others who announced to support the movement financially. — OC



A totally different ball game

While government schools opened recently after the summer break, many private schools are also set to resume studies from Monday. Parents, however, are a worried lot. Courtesy: FIFA World Cup. The football extravaganza, they say, has disturbed their children’s sleeping pattern. A parent rued: “My children don’t go to bed till 4.30 am and get up around 2 pm. They refuse to listen. Throughout the night, they are eating one thing or the other while watching the matches. Now, schools are set to open. I don’t know how I will be able to make them revert to their old schedule.”

Spell check

Out to buy a writing pad, I read a banner outside a shop stating: “All kinds of diary products are available here.” Taking it to be a stationery shop, when I entered it, I was taken by surprise on seeing that milk, cottage cheese and desi ghee were on display in a refrigerator. The shopkeeper said: “Madam, all dairy products are fresh.” On asking if he also sells diaries as the ba31nner read, he said: “Wrong spellings got printed on the banner, but then who knows the correct spellings in this village. So, I did not change the banner.”

Inglorious exit

Looking at the indelible ink that still remains on his nail more than two months after the Lok Sabha elections, a resident said the Kejriwal government in Delhi should not have left the reins too soon. “By the time the former Delhi CM resigned (49 days after joining office), the ink from most of the fingers must not have been erased. This must have angered those who voted for him, leading to the party’s poor showing in the Lok Sabha elections,” he said.


While targeting the Congress for creating a separate Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee for Haryana, Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal, who was at Punjab Agricultural University yesterday, said it was a conspiracy of the Central government. Soon, however, he realised that “the powers that be” have changed at the Centre with his own party’s alliance forming the government recently. So, he corrected his mistake and blamed the Congress and Gandhis instead.

Contributed by Shivani Bhakoo, Anupam Bhagria, Gurvinder Singh and Charanjit Singh Teja



Mandi Ahmedgarh awaits a govt senior secondary school
Residents say children waste time, energy in commuting
Our Correspondent

The foundation stone of a government degree college laid by Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal during his stint in 1979. Leave alone a college, Mandi Ahmedgarh has not got a government senior secondary school yet.
The foundation stone of a government degree college laid by Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal during his stint in 1979. Leave alone a college, Mandi Ahmedgarh has not got a government senior secondary school yet. A Tribune photograph

Mandi Ahmedgarh, July 6
Even after a century of its establishment by Nawab Ahmed Ali Khan, Mandi Ahmedgarh is yet to have a government educational institute that may provide education higher than the middle level to students in the town and its surrounding areas.

Although Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal had laid the foundation stone of a government degree college at MGMN Senior Secondary School during one of his earlier stints 
on April 12, 1979, the status of the institute was never elevated.

Leave alone a college, the town is still awaiting a government senior secondary school. Residents have been demanding it for long, so that their wards could get quality education at nominal fees without wasting time and energy in travelling to distant places.

Although, a number of government and private-aided educational institutes have come up in neighbouring towns, Mandi Ahmedgarh has only one middle and a couple of primary schools being run by the state government.

Though there are some private aided senior secondary schools in the town, management committees running these educational institutes are finding it difficult to handle the affairs. A majority of students studying in these schools belong to poor families and are unable to pay the fees. In absence of any donations, teachers go without salaries for months.

Justifying the demand being raised by the residents, SAD legislator Iqbal Singh Jhoondan said he had already taken up the issue with the Chief Minister, who had further told the Education Minister, Dr Daljit Singh, to initiate the process of establishing a government senior secondary school in the town.

Former municipal council president Ravinder Puri has already passed a resolution to provide land to the government for opening a government school in the area. 



City students shine in PU exams
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 6
Three students of the Government College for Girls have brought laurels to the city by excelling in the BA-II examinations conducted by Panjab University, Chandigarh, recently.

Neha Gambhir has bagged the second position in the university by securing 84.43 per cent marks. Rishu Chopra (83.75 per cent) and Nidha (83.18 per cent) have got third and fifth varsity positions respectively.

Panjab University has also declared the results of the fourth semester exams of MSc (IT). Manpreet of Devki Devi Jain Memorial College for Women has topped in the exams with 84.82 per cent marks. Other students of the college who have made their mark include Jaspreet (83.82 per cent), Meenu (82.95 per cent) and Srishti (82.56 per cent), who stood fourth, sixth and eighth respectively.



Police Department’s initiative bears fruits
Dip in number of burglaries reported during summer vacation this year
Our Correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh, July 6
Preventive measures taken by residents going out of town during the summer break, following awareness spread by the police, seem to have succeeded in discouraging burglars.

The police said the number of burglaries reported during this period went down drastically as compared to previous years.

Unlike previous years, most residents took steps such as implementing neighbourhood watch scheme, depositing cash and valuables in banks, asking someone to take care of unattended houses and installing CCTV cameras on the premises before leaving for trips.

This came after the police spread awareness in the town and constituted special patrolling teams.

Students played an important role in preventing burglaries as they conveyed the message given to them during awareness drives at schools to their parents.

Rakesh Kumar of Dehlon village said he had taken preventive steps according to guidelines given by the police through pamphlets.

Ashok Kumar of Ward No. 11 said he acted on the advice of the police officials and asked his neighbours to switch on lights of his house daily.

The Assistant Commissioner of Police, Gill, Gurpreet Singh Sikand; Deputy Superintendent of Police, Amargarh, Gurmit Singh; and Deputy Superintendent of Police, Payal, Balwinder Singh Bhikhi said the number of burglaries during this summer vacation had decreased substantially due to coordinated efforts of all concerned.

However, there were no takers for the police scheme of arranging extra security for unattended houses as police stations received no formal request.



Babies, parents have a gala time
Tribune News Service

A woman sashays down the ramp with her children during a fashion show in Ludhiana on Sunday.
A woman sashays down the ramp with her children during a fashion show in Ludhiana on Sunday. Photo: Inderjeet Verma

Ludhiana, July 6
Mother’s Pride Preschool today organised “Hugs N Kisses”, a fashion show for children and their parents.

Parents sashayed down the ramp along with their children, below the age of two-and-a-half years, during the show held in association with the Inter National Institute of Fashion Design.

Dressed elegantly in Western classical outfits, both parents and tiny tots captivated the audience.

They also participated in other parenting activities. Eminent personalities from the city were the judges. They crowned the winners with different titles such as Ethereal Family, Wispy Prince, Snowflake Princess, Vogue Prince, Super Dad and Super Mom. There were surprise gifts for every participant.

Director of the school Shobhan Soi also shared his views on positive parenting.



Better Ludhiana — rising snatching incidents
Tormentors snatch women’s safety
Mohit Khanna
Tribune News Service

CCTV grabs show snatchers targeting a womanin Ludhiana.
CCTV grabs show snatchers targeting a woman in Ludhiana. Photo: Inderjeet Verma

Ludhiana, July 6
Friday’s snatching incident has yet again brought to the fore the vulnerability of women in the city. Due to the rising snatching incidents, gated colonies are mushrooming in the city, with residents confining themselves to the four walls.

Although, Kanchan Vasdev, a journalist, fought bravely and foiled the snatching attempt, CCTV grabs belie the tall claims of the police of adequate security arrangements.

It was not a stray incident. Several such cases have taken place in the past, with the culprits making away with purses, mobile phones or gold chains.

Be it the daughter- in- law of SGPC president Avtar Singh Makkar, a woman judge posted in Nawanshahr, or journalists, including Kanchan Vasdev and Minna Zutshi, the snatchers have not spared anyone.

In most of the incidents, women walking alongside roads or travelling by rickshaws were targeted by the snatchers.

The snatchers not only leave a victim in agonising pain of injuries, but also traumatise her.

Twenty days ago, Upasna Gautam (33) was taking a stroll at Daresi Ground when a youth under the influence of drugs tried to snatch her earrings. She gave him a thrashing and raised the alarm. However, the snatcher managed to escape. Since then, her husband accompanies her to morning walks.

“How can women be empowered, if they are not safe. The terror of snatching is such that women are scared travelling alone and prefer to be in the company of a male companion while venturing outdoors,” said Loveena, a housewife.

Police officials are busy pleasing politicians and women’s safety figures nowhere on their agenda.

As a matter of fact, the officials were all over the place as Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal and his wife and Union Minister for Food Processing Harsimrat Kaur Badal were visiting the city, but as soon as the VIPs left the city, the police officials too vanished.

“The police have the resources to nab the snatchers, what they lack is intent. If today Deputy CM Sukhbir Badal and DGP Punjab announce a drive against snatchers, the officials will show snatchers running into nakas and getting arrested,” said retired professor KBS Sodhi.

The drive of the state police against drugs has also boomeranged and led to the rise in drug prices. “In order to arrange more money, addicts are  committing snatchings,” said sources. Senior advocate Dalip Batish said, “A majority of snatchings are being committed by the addicts. Even the drive against drug peddling has turned out to be mere eyewash. The police have failed to make any recovery. The so-called peddlers who have been caught with 15 grams to 25 grams of drugs appear to be addicts. The addicts-turned-snatchers get bail in a few weeks and again indulge in criminal activities. The right approach is to conduct the medical test of the addicts and get them admitted to de-addiction centres. Till the time the addicts will not shun drugs, they will not stop snatching.”

Snatching triggered migrant violence

It seems that the police have not learnt any lesson from the December 2009 migrant violence, which led to the death of a migrant and scores of officials injured. Besides, several vehicle and houses were also torched by the agitating migrants in the Dhandari area. Later, it came to light that the violence erupted due to the rising snatching incidents targeting migrants. Due to the violence, the industry had suffered losses running into crores.

Snatching incidents

July 4: Kanchan Vasdev, a Chandigarh-based journalist, suffered bruises and injuries in the head and ankle when two youths riding a motorcycle tried to snatch her bag. Vasdev caught hold of a snatcher. However, the duo managed to escape.

July 4: A bike-borne snatcher took away a purse containing ~24,000 from Kamlesh Gupta while she was going towards Block B, BRS Nagar.

July 5: Two juveniles were arrested on Sunday for snatching a mobile phone from Rittu while she was on her way to a shop near Imperial Hotel at 8 pm.

July 5: The Jodhewal Basti police have booked Harish Kumar and Gurpreet Singh for snatching a mobile phone from Jagdish Kumar while the latter was going towards Kakowal Road on July 4. The duo is yet to be arrested.

July 5: The Jodhewal Basti police have booked Imran Sahota for snatching a mobile phone from Prabhu Dayal at knifepoint on July 3. 

Fuel shortage

Due to the shortage of fuel, the PCR motorcycle fleet is off road. The absence of the bikes is also responsible for the rise in snatching incidents.



Registration of power complaints becomes hassle-free
Kuldip Bhatia

Ludhiana, July 6
Hassles of booking a complaint for disruption in power supply due to line fault and then the tedium of following up with the staff for rectification of the fault for restoration of supply have now become a thing of the past. Keeping pace with the customer-friendly approach of the private sector service providers, Punjab State Power Corporation Limited (PSPCL) has now put a mechanism in place for keeping in touch with consumers who book a complaint about power failure.

Quite a few city residents were in for a pleasant surprise when they received an SMS after booking a complaint about disruption in power supply from the division concerned of the PSPCL. The message sent by the centralised call centre set up by the power utility read, “Dear customer, your complaint ref no xxxxx has been registered at (date and time). Please use this reference number for tracing progress of the complaint.”

Soon thereafter, the consumer received another SMS after the complaint was forwarded to the field staff for rectification. The message stated, “Your complaint number xxxxx has been marked as work in progress. Mobile number (96461xxxxx) shall be resolving this complaint. Thanks.”

For the consumers who used to spend a lot of time and energy in following up the complaints and calling up the complaint office of the PSPCL again and again to know the fate of their complains and expected time to be taken by the field staff for restoration of power supply, this turned out to be a new experience.

But that was not the end of it. The consumer, who had booked the complaint, received yet another message after the power supply was restored which said, “Your complaint no xxxxx has been marked as resolved. Thanks.”

Karnail Singh, a resident of BRS Nagar, said the PSPCL had taken a right step which was long overdue. The harassment caused to the public in booking and following up the complaints of power failure had assumed almost unbearable proportions. The worst part being that the affected consumers did not know whom to call to know the status of their complaints and expected time to be taken for restoration of power supply.

Rachpal Singh, chief engineer, central zone, PSPCL, said setting up a centralised call centre and maintaining constant contact with the consumers who booked complaints regarding disruption of power supply was one of the steps that the power utility intended to take to bring about qualitative improvement in power distribution network in the city and elsewhere in central zone. 



Industrialists pin hopes on Harsimrat
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 6
Union minister for Food Processing Industry Harsimrat Kaur Badal yesterday said the Centre would sympathetically consider the issues raised by representatives of various industries, including interest subvention, I-T exemption for a definite period and subsidising post-harvest technology, to give a fillip to the food processing industry in Punjab.

Interacting with industrialists at Punjab Agricultural University, the minister listened to the problems of the industrialists and asked them what incentives they required from the Central Government to boost food processing in Punjab.

Harsimrat said she would consider the demand of industrialists for an interest subvention of 5 to 6 per cent which could be paid directly to banks in order to make the food processing industry competitive.

She said I-T exemption for a period of five years would also be considered. There was also a demand from fruit and vegetable growers for the transfer of latest as well as affordable post-harvest technology.

The minister said ensuring subsidised machinery and identification of best food production technologies would be considered.

As far as the reduction of excise duty on all food production items as well as equipment is concerned, she said she would look into it. Earlier, Financial Commissioner Development Suresh Kumar said grants were being given as per the Gadgil formula. 



Alcoholism scourges society
Manav Mander
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 6
Alcohol consumption is increasing among all age groups and experts hold declining social values responsible for it. Psychiatrists said things had changed with the passage of time. “Nowadays, couples do not mind consuming alcohol in front of their children.

Seeing their elders savouring drinks, the children too cross the line,” they said.

Rajeev Gupta, who runs a psychological, epilepsy and de-addiction centre, said he attended to a number of alcoholic couples. “The other day a man came to me saying he started boozing after he saw his wife do the same,” the doctor said.

Another city-based psychologist Dr Sanjiv Mahajan said declining social and moral values were the reason behind the changing social scenario.

“Alcohol has weaved a web around people. Children think if their parents and grandparents can consume alcohol, why can’t they. With parents consuming alcohol, the children are inexorably getting hooked on it,” he said.

Expressing concern, a senior citizen, Gursharan Singh, said, “Our society is blindly aping the West without assessing its ills. Just to be a part of the show-off culture, they are spoiling the lives of their wards. The matter is of a grave concern. Alcoholism is a bane of society, with the upper middle class becoming its victim,” he added.



Illegal construction
Plot owner accused of misusing Saral Scheme
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 6
An illegal construction has been noticed at Bhai Radhir Singh Nagar. As per records, owner of the plot got the building plan approved on July 4, 2014, under the Saral Scheme.

Assistant Town Planner (Headquarters) Kamaljit Kaur said such schemes were launched to benefit residents, but these were being misused for vested interests. “The building inspector stalled the construction as the building plan was not approved, but the owner got it approved on July 4. Under the scheme, the building plan is approved on the spot,” said the ATP.

As per the plan, the construction should be carried out on 100 square yards, but two illegal structures are being raised on the land, which is illegal.

“I will ask officials to inspect the building. If they find any illegal structure, they will get it razed. We are not going to spare the guilty,” said the ATP.

An anonymous letter was shot off to the MC Commissioner. Allegations were levelled against the ATP (Zone D).

The letter stated that the building was being constructed in connivance with the ATP.

The complaint was filed on June 23 while the ATP took charge on June 26.




Volunteers raise slogans during a rally-cum-awareness programme at Sarabha Nagar in Ludhiana on Sunday.
Volunteers raise slogans during a rally-cum-awareness programme at Sarabha Nagar in Ludhiana on Sunday. A tribune photograph

Awareness rally

An awareness rally of volunteers was organised by Sambhav and Vmad at Sarabha Nagar Market on Sunday. The rally started from Leisure Valley and concluded at the Sarabha Nagar market. The Punjab Enfield Generation Bikers Club escorted the rally. Young volunteers Gagandeep Singh, Ravleen Manchanda, Gauravdeep Singh, Pankaj Taneja, Harpreet Singh, Karanbir Singh and Yogesh led the march. Various slogans were raised on the occasion. The senior team of Sambhav participated and appreciated the youngsters for their passion and contribution towards the welfare of the city. The team of Sambhav leaders present at the event was, Jaswant Singh Zafar, an eminent Punjabi poet, Jatinder Manchanda, industrialist, Balbir Kaur Pandher, social activist. Jatinder Manchanda, member of Sambhav foundation, said, “The intention

of doing the rally was to enroll and motivate our citizens for their participation during the Earth Hour on July 20. We are going to make a world record by planting 1 lakh trees from 8-9 am on July 20. Anybody willing to support us are welcome to participate.”

Writer to be felicitated

The 9th Shiromani Sahitkar Shastri Padam Nath Award (2014) will be given to Canada —based writer and novelist Harchand Singh Bagri. This was revealed by Shastri Padam Nath Memorial Society on Sunday. The award comprises a memento, shawl, cash prize and gifts by the trusties. Among other prominent literary figures who have received this award include professor Gurbhajan Singh Gill, Bhupinder Singh, Sardar Panchi and Fakir Chand Shukla.

School adopted

Shri Hindu Nyay Peeth has adopted a school according to representatives of the organisation. The school has been adopted to provide religious education and knowledge of Shastras for self-defence. Underprivileged Hindu students would be given free-of-cost education.

Employees meet

A state-level meeting of Democratic Employees Front Punjab was held at Jawahar Nagar on Sunday. It was presided over by state president Bhupinder Singh Waraich. The meeting was held for the preparation of Employee Convention to be held on July 16 in Chandigarh. The convention is being held by Punjab Mulazam Sangharsh Committee against the government’s alleged anti-employee attitude, according to the representatives of the organisation.

Cultural mela

A cultural mela was held at Dugri in the memory of singer Daljeet Dhoorkoti. On this occasion, Jagdev Singh Jassowal urged the government to release stamp on the name of Yamla Jatt. Gurcharan Kaur, wife of Dhoorkoti, honoured Dr Raju Singh Chhina, Medical Superintendent of DMCH, and singer Dev Threeke Wala. — TNS



No respite from power pangs for residents

Whenever the mercury soars to its maximum during summers, Punjab State Power Corporation Limited’s failure to overcome the gap between the demand for and supply of power is exposed. Due to the inadequate infrastructure that is unable to cope with the load, especially during the paddy harvesting season, the PSPCL is left with no option but to impose frequent power cuts. Also, whenever the city encounters strong winds, the pitiable condition of electricity wires and poles gets exposed and residents have to remain without power for many hours. Tall claims of the state government regarding uninterrupted supply of power to its consumers are still a distant dream. Due to misguided policies, most power projects being initiated by the ruling party are either non-operational or are not working to their optimum capacity. Also, the PSPCL officials fail to carry out the maintenance work of its feeders in time. Keeping in view that the industrial city is a major source of revenue for the PSPCL, the state government must adopt a realistic approach to eradicate power pangs in the city.

Ravi Chander Garg, Ludhiana



Three booked for demanding dowry
Our Correspondent

Khanna, July 6
The Khanna police have booked three persons for dowry harassment. The accused have been identified as Palwinder Singh, husband of the complainant, father-in-law Jatinder Singh and mother-in-law Amarjit kaur, all residents of Rameedpur, Ropar.

As per the complainant, Parampreet Kaur of Rampur near Doraha, she got married to Palwinder on October 20, 2013. She alleged that after a month her in-laws started harassing her for bringing less dowry. She claimed that her in-laws pressurised her to bring Rs 50,000 from her parents, but she refused.

The police have registered a case under Sections 406, 498-A, 506 and 500 of the IPC in this regard.



Manoj checkmates Santosh, emerges champion
Our Sports Reporter

Ludhiana, July 6
Manoj Kumar of Amritsar emerged champion in the inaugural edition of the Ludhiana FIDE Rating (below 1800) Prize Money Chess Championship that concluded at Kundan Vidya Mandir, Civil Lines, today.

Till yesterday, Manoj who was trailing behind Santosh Gautam from Nepal, bounced back today. On the first board, Manoj, playing a brilliant game, not only wiped out the deficit, but also surged ahead to romp home victorious to pocket a cash prize of Rs 30,000 in addition to the trophy.

Playing on the second board, Amarjit Singh of Ludhiana got the better of another city player Sushant Manuja to finish as runner-up and got richer by Rs 20,000 while Santosh Gautam stood third. He received a cash prize of Rs 14,000, besides a memento.

Dr Deepak Bansal and Rekha Bansal, who helped the Ludhiana District Chess Association in organising the tournament along with Atul Kumar Gupta, joint secretary, All-India Chess Federation, distributed the prizes. Cash prizes worth Rs 1.70 lakh were given to the participants.

The following players secured top 20 positions. Manoj Kumar of Amritsar (8.0), Singh Amarjit of Ludhiana (7.5), Gautam Santosh of Nepal (7.5), Sahil Batra of Ludhiana (7.5), Shishir Kumar of Delhi (7.5), Sudhir Kumar of Haryana (7.0), Anmol Bhagat of Jalandhar (7.0), Ishaan Bansal of Ludhiana (7.0), Raj Kumar of Delhi ( 7.0), Harminder Singh of Delhi (6.5), Thakur Sanjeev of Himachal Pradesh (6.5), Ashitosh Kumar of Ludhiana (6.5), Imanjot Singh Deol of Ludhiana (6.5), Dishant Jain of Madhya Pradesh (6.5), Maxim Singh of Jammu and Kashmir (6.5), Chandel Jagdish of Himachal Pradesh (6.5), Kirti Sharma of Ludhiana (6.0), Jagdeep Singh Sudan of Delhi (6.0), Vikram Mukhija of Rajasthan (6.0) and Dinesh Sinha of Uttar Pradesh (6.0).

Besides, prizes were distributed to the players in different age groups. They included best Ludhiana (U-11) male players Arya Bhatt Rs 3,000 and Raghav Bansal Rs 2,000; best Ludhiana (U-11) female players: Meenakshi Mehra Rs 3,000 and Deepti Sharma Rs 2,000; best Ludhiana (U-15) male players: Gaurav Sood Rs 3,000 and Anubav Sharma Rs 2,000; best Ludhiana (U-15) female players: Guntas Girn Rs 3,000 and Kanishka Chawla Rs 2,000; best Ludhiana male players: Sushant Manuja Rs 3,000 and Dilbagh Singh Rs 2,000; best Ludhiana female players: Shuhamdeep Kaur Rs 3,000 and Khayati Jain Rs 2,000.

Best female player of the tournament: Samridhi Manchanda, Ludhiana, Rs 3,000 and Meenal Gupta of Jammu and Kashmir Rs 2,000; best Punjab player male (not from Ludhiana): Anshul Mehta of Amritsar Rs 2,500; best Punjab player female (not from Ludhiana): Garushi of Sangrur Rs 2,500.

Best unrated player: Sehaj Arora, Amritsar, Rs 3,000 and Dinesh Juneja of Rajasthan Rs 2,000.

Best below 1400 rating player: Namitbir Singh Walia of Jalandhar Rs 3,000, Soham Kamotra of J&K Rs 2,000. Best player between 1400 to 1600 rating: Ashwani Grover of Moga Rs 3,000 and Dinesh Bhagat of Jalandhar Rs 2,000.

Consolation prizes: Best Ludhiana veteran player: Ajay Bawa (58 years), youngest Ludhiana player (boys): Idanth Mittal (seven years); youngest Ludhiana female player: Pearl (nine years).



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