L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


City bus service in limbo
Co. expresses helplessness in running it; MC explores other options
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 26
The fate of the city bus service hangs in the balance as Prassana Purple Group, which runs the service, has reportedly expressed “helplessness” in continuing it. The Municipal Corporation has failed to clear the company’s dues worth several crores.

A meeting of higher officials was held with the representatives of the company today. It failed to reach any desirable conclusion. Another meeting has been convened on Wednesday. The MC is looking at other options to run the buses.

According to sources, the company officials held a meeting with the Commissioner of the Municipal Commissioner, Pradeep Aggarwal, and Additional Commissioner Ghansham Thori. The company has reportedly expressed “difficulty” in running the buses in the present situation. They said Ludhiana City Bus Service Limited (LCBSL) had funds as low as Rs 10 lakh only.

The company has demanded at least Rs 2.5 crore be released by the Municipal Corporation, so they could think of continuing with the service. The fuel stations have refused to provide us with fuel and the conductors were causing trouble as payments were not released to them on time. Another meeting is reportedly fixed for July 30.

Meanwhile, the civic body is weighing other options to run the service. The authorities are even considering giving the contract to those interested in running the service on all seven routes. “There could be seven operators/companies who will ply buses on the routes. The MC will not provide them any money to run the buses. The expenses on diesel, employees’ salaries, maintenance, operation, etc, will be borne by contractor.

“At least there will be no liabilities. The losses or profits will all rest with contractor or company. Our aim is just to provide this facility to the city residents,” said an official.

Ghansham Thori said: “Another meeting with the company representatives will be convened on July 30 and we hope we will find a solution soon. The city residents should not be deprived of this facility,” said Thori.

MC weighs options

There could be seven operators/companies who will ply buses. The MC will not provide them any money to run the buses. The expenses on diesel, employees’ salaries, maintenance, operation, etc, will be borne by contractor.
— An Official


diarrhoea outbreak
28 cases reported from adjoining areas
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 26
Though the situation at Parkash Nagar, Jawaddi, is under control with just two patients from the area testing positive for diarrhea today, 28 new cases from the adjoining areas were reported. These cases have reported in a radius of about 4 km. The areas included Punjab Mata Nagar, Badi Jawaddi and Punjabi Bagh.

The District Epidemiologist, Dr Anil Verma, said a total of 52 persons were examined at the OPD today and 30 were found positive for diarrhoea. Two were from the same area while 28 were from the adjoining areas. “We cannot say there is an epidemic. These are sporadic cases. Patients from the adjoining areas are also visiting the camp being held in the area. Water contamination is a major problem in the area,” said Dr Verma.

As far as the report on the water samples is concerned, it will now be submitted to the Health Department on Monday as the doctor concerned is not available, said officials in the Health Department.

Now, the number of persons suffering from diarrhoea has reached 326. Of them, 58 have been admitted to different hospitals. Eighteen patients were discharged after treatment.

Deputy Commissioner Rajat Aggarwal, along with Municipal Corporation Commissioner Pradeep Aggarwal visited the affected area on Saturday to get feedback from residents. More than 150 illegal water connections have been cut by the Municipal Corporation and the residents were being provided water through tankers. Rajat Aggarwal asked the Civil Surgeon to continue with the camp till the disease was fully controlled.



Boy drowned in Sutlej river
Accompanied friends for a dip; parents suspect foul play

Ludhiana, July 26
A 14-year-old boy was drowned in the Sutlej near Kasabaad village today. The deceased has been identified Lovpreet Singh, alias Labbu, a resident of Gurbaksh Nagar, Bhadhur-ke-Road. He was a student of class IX. The parents of Lovpreet said he had gone missing last evening.

Today, the boy’s parents got information from Lovepreet’s friends that he had gone to the banks of the Sutlej along with them.

According to information, the deceased and his three friends, Yuvraj, Kartiq and Hritik, went to the banks of the Sutlej, near Kasabad village, to take a dip. Kartiq and Yuvraj sat on the banks to guard their bicycles while Hritik and Lovepreet jumped into the water. While bathing, Lovepreet was drowned.

The friends did not disclose the incident to their parents.

According to the police, a passerby spotted Lovepreet’s body on the banks and informed the police early morning today.

The deceased’s parents sensed foul play. The police handed the body to the relatives after a post-mortem examination was conducted at the Civil Hospital. — TNS



Businessman robbed of car
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 26
Four SUV-borne persons robbed a person of his car, valuables and cash at gun point last night. The victim is a local businessman, Hardeep Singh, a resident of the Dugri area.

Hardeep Singh told the police that has said he owned a motor showroom at Samrala Chowk. On the night of July 24, he was returning to his home in his Swift car, when four persons on an SUV signalled him to stop near the cremation ground at Model Town. When he alighted, one of the accused put a gun on his temple. They pushed him into his car andtook him towards Delhi Road and shot him on the thigh.

They dumped him near Jhugiana village after taking away all his valuables and money. He is undergoing treatment and is stable. The police are probing the case.



World Hepatitis Day
Doctors pledge to fight ‘silent killer’
Tribune News Service

Dr Ajit Sood delivers a lecture in Ludhiana.
Dr Ajit Sood delivers a lecture in Ludhiana. A Tribune photograph

Ludhiana, July 26
With World Hepatitis Day round the corner (on July 28), a session was held to spread awareness on the fatal disease. Hepatitis is an inflammation of the liver, most commonly caused by a viral infection.

City-based doctors renewed their pledge to fight the disease, which accounts for nearly 2.5 lakh deaths in India every year.

Expressing concern on the alarming rise of hepatitis cases in the city, Dr Ajit Sood, head of gastroenterology department at Dayanand Medical College and Hospital, said: “Hepatitis is a silent killer as it rarely presents symptoms until very late. Studies reported from various parts of India estimate that around 20 million Indians are hepatitis-B carriers and around 12 million may have silent hepatitis-C virus infection. A person infected with the hepatitis-C virus may carry it for as long as 20 years without presenting any obvious symptom. Regular health check-up is advised for people above 40 years of age.”

Doctors said there was an urgent need for creating greater awareness on preventive measures and encouraging communities and governments around the world to work together against the “silent killer”.



Chandigarh Mayor visits city
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 26
Chandigarh Mayor Harphool Chander Kalyan, along with councillors, visited the city today. They had a brief interaction with the Mayor, Ludhiana, Harcharan Singh Gohalwaria. The officials wanted to see carriages (rehris) that lifted garbage from the city.

Gohalwaria said a delegation of eight persons wanted to see how garbage was lifted from various parts of the city. The Mayor said the financial position of the Chandigarh Municipal Corporation was strong as they received funds directly from the Central Government. 



Bibliophiles discuss, analyse books
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 26
The Ludhiana Book Club members, who met after a month, spent the evening discussing and analysing books written by famous authors here today.

The second meeting held at Rajguru Nagar Market here today had Dr AS Bhullar, a university professor in Canada who is visiting India, as a special invitee.

Speaking about Dr APJ Abdul Kalam’s “My Journey: Transforming Dreams into Action”, club founder Gurcharan Singh, a former principal, said: “The book is a collection of pieces dealing with different people and incidents in the former President’s life.”

Prof Krishan Singh discussed Khushwant Singh’s “Agnostic Khushwant: There is No God”, in which the celebrated writer debunked religion. Prof Gurcharan Singh told the captivating story of Robin Sharma’s “The Monk Who Sold His Ferrari”. It was unanimously chosen to be discussed in detail at the next meeting of the club.

The members decided to give free club membership to university toppers in graduate programmes.



Parking woes
MC fails to act against violators
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 26
Despite repeated requests and attempts, the Municipal Corporation has failed to take action against those flouting parking norms. The building branch officials have not even prepared a detailed parking report of hospitals where violations were noticed.

Information obtained under the RTI revealed that there were 40 hospitals and the corporation had records of just 26.

Barring a few (not more than six), all hospitals have violated the parking norms, still no action is being taken against the violators. One of the officials with the corporation said all doctors running the hospitals/nursing homes were influential. Since almost all had violated the norms, the civic body was facing difficulty in taking action against them.

The doctors had even met Mayor Harcharan Singh Gohalwaria about two months ago. They told him that when hospitals were started, the building plans were approved. At that time, no objection was raised by the MC, but now providing parking space (as per rules) was not viable. But the Mayor too had assured of taking action against them.

Assistant Town Planner Kamaljit Kaur said the building branch officials were asked to prepare the report in a tabular form so that it would be easy for the MC to keep a track of everything. “Their report has not reached the head office. Three months ago, notices were served on hospitals,” said the ATP (Headquarters).



SGPC members should maintain gurdwaras in Haryana: Phoolka
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 26
Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader and senior advocate HS Phoolka has welcomed the edict of the Akal Takht calling for cancellation of July 27 and 28 conferences.

In a press release issued here today, the AAP leader said the maintenance of gurdwaras in Haryana should be under the control of the 11 elected SGPC members from Haryana till the court decided the issue of the Haryana Sikh Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee.

Condemning Saharanpur riots, Phoolka accused the UP Police and UP Government of remaining mute spectators and failing to save the life and property of innocent citizens.

“Due to increase in communal riots in recent past, it’s absolutely necessary that the Bill against Communal Violence pending in the Rajya Sabha since eight years should be passed at the earliest,” said Phoolka. It was promised by the UPA Government in 2004 as well as in 2009, but it had failed to pass the bill.

“The Central Government should realise its responsibility and take up and pass the Bill against Communal Violence without any further delay.”



It’s all about fashion and style
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 26
A two-day fashion and lifestyle exhibition, Doli, commenced today. Designers from different parts of the country, including Mumbai, Kolkata, Nagpur, Delhi, Jaipur and Chandigarh, displayed dresses and accessories.

Rakhis from Jaipur have been put on display. Apart from the bridal couture, interior specialists, gold and diamond jewellers, wedding planners, caterers, DJ, photography, make-up, cosmetics, luxury premium cars, venue and resorts, fashion accessories caught the fancy of visitors on the first day.

Willy from Karachi designed chappals and mojaris. Payal Choithani from Nagpur showcased her western and semi-formal kurtis. She claimed that she had designed for South African cricket team player Hashim Amla’s wife. “Wedding and lifestyle exhibitions have started to grow big nowadays. Even big brands like Mercedez are presenting cars during such exhibitions,” said Saurav, a resident. Supreet a visitor to the exhibition, said, “We have a wedding in our home later this year. I came here to find a good deal.” 



Trainees of martial art school felicitated
Our Sports Reporter

Ludhiana, July 26
Trainees of Dragon Tiger Technique Chinese Martial Arts Kung-Fu School, who took part in the recently held state-level karate meet in Ludhiana, were honoured by the Rishi Enclave Welfare Society yesterday.

Over 30 players from the school competed in the meet and made their presence felt by finishing among position holders. The budding martial arts players were given prizes at a function organised by the society at Rishi Nagar Park on Hambran Road.

Balkar Singh Sandhu, a senior Congress leader and a councillor, was the chief guest. MM Lakhanpal, BK Arora and Vikas Anand, office-bearers of the organising society, along with Jasvir Singh (Black Belt-III DAN, trainer) and co-trainers Rajinder Kaur Kuldeep Singh, also attended the function.

Sandhu encouraged the trainees to participate in such events. “Martial arts is the most important exercise for self-defense,” added Sandhu.

The trainees who were felicitated include Veeraj Sood, Aditya, KD Dhruwin, Veerpal Kaur, Gurpreet Kaur, Harmandeep Kaur, Uday Chandna, Krish Sood, Sudhiksha Arora, Udaibhan, Rishabh Birla, Manjul , Arham Jain, Amandeep Kaur and Rajwinder Kaur. Other children were given participation certificates.

The Jubilant lot

Veeraj Sood, Aditya, KD Dhruwin, Veerpal Kaur, Gurpreet Kaur, Harmandeep Kaur, Uday Chandna, Krish Sood, Sudhiksha Arora, Udaibhan, Rishabh Birla, Manjul, Arham Jain, Amandeep Kaur and Rajwinder Kaur were honoured. 



Scrap dealer robbed of Rs 8 lakh in city

Ludhiana, July 26
Two motorcycle-borne youths snatched a bag containing Rs 8 lakh from a scrap dealer this evening. Amrik Singh Pawar, Additional Deputy Commissioner of Police II, said the scrap dealer, Ramesh Kumar, and one of his employees Bhinda were returning home when the youths stopped their scooter at Peeru Banda Chowk.

They attacked Bhinda with a sharp-edged weapon and snatched the bag. The police reached the spot and started investigations. — TNS



Water coolers seized
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 26
The Food Safety Department today seized 140 potable water coolers from Rama Water Factory, South City. The water was being sold to offices as “purified water”.

The person running the factory did not have a licence.

Food Safety Officer Manoj Khosla said the factory owner used a submersible motor to fill the coolers. There was no RO system installed and the water was not filtered. “The condition of tanks was bad, with flies and mosquitoes floating on the surface of water. Water samples have been sent for testing. Once the report is out, action will be taken against the guilty accordingly,” said Khosla.

The officials collected milk samples from dairies today.



Villager electrocuted at house 
Our Correspondent

Khamano, July 26
A man of a nearby village was electrocuted at his house today. The deceased has been identified as Ranjit Singh (38), a resident of Sanghol, near here.

Ranjit Singh was reportedly giving water to his buffalo at his house when suddenly a live wire fell on him. He died on the spot.

Chowki in-charge Shamsher Singh confirmed the incident. He said the body of the deceased was handed to his guardians after post-mortem. No case was registered.



Vijay Diwas celebrated

Ludhiana: The Ex-Servicemen Welfare Society celebrated the fifteenth anniversary of Vijay Divas on Saturday. The members commended the courage displayed by all officers.

Col RS Sohi, Col BS Tatla and Col Harbaksh Singh appealed to the government to find early solution to problems being faced by them due to discontinuation of main hospitals of the city and delay in pension. — TNS




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Youth hangs himself at ‘vehra’
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 26
A 24-year-old man committed suicide by hanging himself at Vijay Nagar last night. The deceased has been identified as Santosh Jha, a native of Darbanga district in Bihar. Santosh had been residing at a “vehra” at Vijay Nagar for several years.

According to information, the deceased used to work in a factory at Ramgarh village on the Chandigarh road. Yesterday, he returned from work in the evening. After taking food, he retired to his room.

The police said Santosh hanged himself with the hook of the ceiling fan. One of the brothers of the deceased knocked on the door of his room in the morning. When he did not get any response, they broke the door and found Santosh’s body hanging.

The police got a post-mortem of the body conducted and handed it to Santosh’s relatives. No suicide note has been recovered. A case was registered.



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