L U D H I A N A   S T O R I E S


Three-hour rain and its aftermath
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Rainwater enters a house in Ludhiana
Rainwater enters a house in Ludhiana. Photo: Inderjeet Verma

Ludhiana, July 28
Exposing the ill-preparedness of the civic body, torrential rain left the city submerged today. It rained for just three hours and almost all areas were under water. Residents had to face a tough time as rainwater entered their houses/shops in low-lying areas.

Ditto was the situation at Civil Lines, Rani Jhansi Road and Kitchlu Nagar. Roads were inundated.

The residents kept calling up at newspaper offices to tell reporters how difficult it was for them to drain out water. The Municipal Corporation had to face their wrath.

The worst-affected areas were Janakpuri, Islam Ganj, Field Ganj, Barsati Bazar, Chaura Bazar, Mata Rani Chowk, Haibowal Kalan, Dugri, Books Market, Parkash Colony, Transport Nagar, Daba Road and Dhandari. It took the residents hours to drain out water. Office-goers had it the toughest. They were unable to reach their workplaces on time. A resident of Shastri Nagar, Rose Garden, Gurdial Singh Rai, said: “The authorities spent crores on the installation of storm sewer. Still, the problem persists,” said Rai, a senior citizen.

Sudershan Sood, a resident, said the authorities claimed that they were prepared to deal with water-logging. “Who will pay us the damages? The authorities seem to be least bothered. We are living in a hell,” she said.

In Haibowal, cables are being laid and the dug-up road has been inconveniencing motorists. Today, a school van got stuck there. The driver had to seek help from passersby. At HIG Flats in the Dugri area, the residents have been facing the problem for the past two decades. “Every rainy season, water enters our houses. No solution has been provided to date. I fail to understand why the authorities are not acting,” lamented Harvinder Singh, a resident.

The residence of the Deputy Commissioner too was also flooded with rainwater. “Showers damaged power cables. In some areas, electricity poles fell on roads, posing a threat to commuters,”said Satwant Singh, a shopkeeper in Mata Rani Chowk.

Storm sewer a distant dream

A senior official of the Municipal Corporation said storm sewer was laid in just 10 per cent of the area. The civic body had spent Rs 80 on the project. “For storm sewer, there is no separate drainage system and everything is connected with the main sewerage treatment plants. Plastic bags, garbage, mud go into the sewerage system and choke pipes,” said the official.

When asked if something could be done to solve the problem of water-logging, the official said, “It seems difficult as they need crores for the project. Teams from World Bank visited the city and reports were also prepared, but to no avail.”

Funny messages

While the residents had to face inconvenience, funny messages were being circulated today. One such message read, "The water sports festival is back. Enjoy free boating in Dholewal, Vishkarma Chowk, Miller Ganj and Transport Nagar. Hurry, offer valid till the water-logging lasts. Issued by the MCL in public interest”.

Boundary wall gives way

The boundary wall of the Civil Hospital caved in on Monday. A car parked near the wall was damaged. Amrik Singh, a resident of Amarpura near the Civil Hospital, said: “The hospital is already facing neglect and now the wall has caved in.” Senior Medical Officer Dr RK Karkara said they had written to the department and would get the boundary wall reconstructed soon. “The wall gave way due to torrential rain,” he said.

Children’s woes

Children faced a great difficulty in reaching school on Monday. Jasmeen Gill, a student of Sacred Heart Convent School, said she could not miss the school as she had to attend an important class. Jasnoor had a tough time reaching school. “I had to take an exam. I was late by 20 minutes,” she said.


Records damaged at Mini-Secretariat
Anupam Bhagria
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 28
Heavy rain brought the city to a halt today. It was a flood-like situation at the Mini-Secretariat. Visitors as well as employees had a tough time reaching their offices. Rainwater entered the basement of the building and damaged records.

It took the employees two to three hours to drain out water. Furniture and the other stuff were also damaged. Not only offices, but the ground floor of the multi-storeyed parking complex was also submerged. Holding her footwear in hands, Surinder Kaur, a visitor, said, “I should not have come here today. It is difficult to walk barefoot.”

Manholes in the Mini-Secretariat were also overflowing. A few employees were seen cleaning a manhole near the DC office.

Server develops snag

Licence seekers had to go through a harrowing time as the server developed a snag at the District Transport Office in Children’s Park, Model Town. Anil Garg, District Transport Officer, Ludhiana, said, “The fault will be rectified soon.”

Thin attendance at government offices

Government employees reached office at 11.30 am. A government official said, “I had decided to check the attendance of the staff today, but when it started raining, I put off the plan.”



When the going gets tough, the tough get going
Kuldip Bhatia

Ludhiana, July 28
Showers that lashed the city in the wee hours wreaked havoc on power supply in most of the areas. At several places, high-velocity winds that preceded the showers, uprooted trees with the result that LT and PVC cables snapped in many localities.

In the affected areas, residents had to go without water as well because it took quite some time for the power officials to restore the supply.

As per officials of Punjab State Power Corporation Limited (PSPCL), about 30 to 40 per cent of some 500 odd feeders in the city were disturbed due to the heavy rainfall. While the supply was restored in most of the localities in two to three hours, in some areas where cables had snapped, or trees had fallen on power cables, the power supply remained disrupted for anything from four to six hours.

Residents of many posh localities, including Mall Road, Maharani Jhansi Road, Bhai Randhir Singh, Sarabha Nagar, Haibowal, Salem Tabri, Upkar Nagar, Dugri, Model Town, several localities along Ferozepur Road, PAU campus, Daresi and several other areas in the old city, complained of power failure immediately after the rain commenced.

“The power went off early in the morning and it was restored after 2 pm which led to the residents having to go without water supply in the morning and afternoon. We had to bring buckets of water from our neighbourhood for cooking,” said Gurdev Singh, a resident of the Salem Tabri area.

PSPCL officials maintained that by afternoon, the power supply was restored in all the affected areas, except individual complaints of line faults, which were also being attended to.



Rain adds to woes of protesting students
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 28
The striking students of Guru Angad Dev Veterinary and Animal Sciences University (GADVASU) had to face a tough time when it started raining heavily in the morning. The sudden showers that lashed the city this morning caused inconvenience to the students. They had to arrange for a tarpaulin sheet to cover their tent.

“It has been two months and we are facing various problems, but no one is coming to our rescue. We have been asking the authorities to get a meeting arranged with Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal, but to no avail. The government should provide assurance to us that our future will be secured, only then we will end the protest,” said the students.



15 water samples fail purity test

Ludhiana, July 28
Fifteen water samples, collected from Parkash Nagar, have failed the purity test. Out of the five stool samples, three have tested positive for cholera. “Out of five stool samples, three have tested positive for cholera,” said Dr Anil Verma, District Epidemiologist.

At the medical camp in Parkash Nagar, 10 patients were examined and no fresh case of diarrhoea was reported. As many as 597 houses were surveyed, covering a population of 3,120. Thirteen group meetings were held. Around 117 ORS packets and 198 tablets of chlorine were distributed. — TNS



10-year-old child suffers fall, dies
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 28
A 10-year-old child died after falling into a pit at the Mahadev Nagar Daba area today. The deceased was identified as Akash. The civic body is laying pipes in the area. The child fell into the pit which was filled with water and died.

An eyewitness said the child was running and suffered a fall.

His parents and passersby rescued him and took him to the hospital, where he was declared brought dead.

On the complaint of Shiv Kumar, the father of the deceased, the police have registered a case against the Sewerage Board.

Daba SHO Rajwant Singh said: “We have registered a case against the board for negligence. We will investigate the matter and then take action.”

The body was handed over to the family after the autopsy.

Another child who was playing with Akash had a narrow escape.

Woman electrocuted

A 19-year-old woman was electrocuted at Sita Nagar in the Bharat Nagar area today. The deceased died after coming in contact with power cables.

The deceased, identified as Shilpa Munda, belonged to West Bengal.

At 8 am, Shilpa left for a temple. On the footpath, she came in contact with the wires and died on the spot.

She was working as a domestic help. When she did not return home, her employers started looking for her. They spotted her body on the footpath.

Eyewitnesses said nobody came to her rescue. After half-an-hour, area residents called the police.

Balwainder Singh, in-charge, police post, bus stand, said, “Shilpa had been working at the house of Rajesh Garg for the past seven months.” He said the body would be handed over to the family after postmortem.

Her employers have informed her family about the tragedy.



Better Ludhiana: beggars blight
Intense efforts needed to curb begging
Anupam Bhagria
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 28
Though the District Administration has taken up an initiative to curb the begging menace by conducting raids after every fortnight, many beggars have made it as their profession. The beggars run away on seeing the raiding team. As soon the team leaves, they return to their respective places.

After every fortnight, the administration conducts raids at several places in the city to curb the menace. Officials of the administration pick up beggars and send them to shelter homes. After a few days, one comes across more new faces in the city. In the past two months, the administration has held a few meetings with some NGOs to curb the problem, but nothing has been done.

Rajat Aggarwal Deputy Commissioner Ludhiana said: “Begging is one of the biggest problems and it will not have a simplistic solution. We have to make efforts at a large scale to check the problem. We are going to initiate a campaign in the next phase to make people aware of not giving alms to beggars”.

He said: “Begging is a crime in the country. So, I have instructed the police to register an FIR against the beggars who indulge in begging after being caught by the team”.

He said: “During last raids, we came across 5-6 beggars who were found begging in the city after being caught by the raiding team. I asked the SHOs concerned to register an FIR against them. Recently, I discussed this issue with Nilambari Jagdale, Deputy Commissioner of Police, at a meeting. It was decided during the meeting that joint efforts are needed to check begging.”

Some residents of the city have come up with suggestions to eradicate this evil.

Dr Gurpratp Singh Sandhu, consultant, psychologist, said: “During the raid, the administration should identify the beggars who are mentally challenged. They should be provided treatment, while the remaining ones should be tackled with the help of the police. Residents should be motivated not to give alms to beggars and encourage begging.”

Dr DV Jindal, Professor (retd) of linguistics, said: “Those indulged in begging should be educated. They should be motivated to do work. People should be discouraged from giving money to beggars. The administration is doing its job, but residents should also understand their responsibility towards society. They should cooperate with the authorities to check beggary”.

Satish Sachdeva, mass media officer (retd), Health Department, said: “NGOs, social and religious organisations should join hands to eradicate this evil from the city. They should make some arrangements to educate them. These organisations should take some steps to rehabilitate these beggars”.

Asha Bangia, a retired teacher, said: “There is a gang of beggars, which is active in the city. There should be some system to educate and rehabilitate these beggars. Keeping them in shelter homes for sometime will not solve the purpose. Religious and social organisations should come forward to check beggary”.

Anita Sharma, founder of the Belan Brigade, Punjab, said: “To put an end to the menace, the government should open some schools and rehabilitation centres for beggars. Non-governmental organisations should work in collaboration with the government for the rehabilitation of beggars”.

Harmeet Kaur Waraich, principal of Nankana Sahib, said: “Vocational training should be given to the beggars so that they can be rehabilitated so that they can earn their livelihood. The government should give them support so that they can begin some work. They can also be employed in factories and industrial units. People should also not encourage beggars”.



world hepatitis day
Over 1,500 patients screened
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 28
On the occasion of World Hepatitis Day, a series of awareness initiatives and a week-long free screening camp were organised by the Department of Gastroenterology at SPS Apollo Hospitals.

More than 1,500 free-of-cost screenings were performed over the past week. Over 100 patients participated in an interactive patient education forum with Dr Nirmaljeet Singh Malhi, senior consultant and coordinator, Department of Gastroenterology and Dr Harmeet Singh Saluja, senior consultant, Department of Gastroenterology.

According to Dr Malhi, the forum laid special emphasis on early detection, timely treatment and need for vaccination against hepatitis as an important preventive measure. The hospital also distributed free-of-cost information booklets and education material to patients. Earlier during the day, SPS Apollo Hospitals also organised a poster-making competition on the theme ‘Save your liver’ to raise awareness regarding hepatitis.

Speaking on the occasion, Dr Malhi said, “Seeing the low awareness levels about hepatitis, it is essential to organise such awareness initiatives to educate people about hepatitis”.

The low awareness levels need to be improved as the disease burden caused by hepatitis is very large and the numbers chronically infected with and annually killed by hepatitis B and C viruses are more than HIV/AIDS, added Dr Saluja.

The theme for the World Hepatitis Day 2014 is “Hepatitis: Think Again”.

With every one of 12 people across the world affected by hepatitis, it should not be ignored. Unfortunately, most people are unaware of their positive status due to lack of symptoms in the early phase. Till now, there is no vaccine against hepatitis C. So prevention by adopting universal precautions and regular screening to detect early cases remains the key, added Dr Malhi.



Silent killer claims 1.4 million lives annually: Doc
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 28
Dayanand Medical College and Hospital today observed World Hepatitis Day by organising health awareness lectures. Lectures were delivered by the faculty from the Departments of Medicine, Gastroenterology and Community Medicine.

Dr RK Soni, professor of community medicine, also the moderator of the programme, said the viral hepatitis is a leading cause of global infectious diseases mortality each year, causing approximately 1.4 million deaths. The World Health Organisation (WHO) estimates that nearly 400 million people have chronic viral hepatitis worldwide and most of them do not even know they are infected. More than one million people die each year from causes related to viral hepatitis, commonly cirrhosis and liver cancer.

In their messages to those present on the occasion, principal Dr Daljit Singh and vice- principal Dr Sandeep Puri also shared their expertise views regarding the prevention of hepatitis C.

Dr Ajit Sood (professor and head of gastroenterology) elaborated on various types of hepatitis virus. There are several types of hepatitis viruses including types A,B, C, D, E, and possibly G. Types A, B, and C are the most common, said Dr Ajit Sood.

Health awareness lectures

Lectures were delivered by the DMCH faculty from the Departments of Medicine, Gastroenterology and Community Medicine.



Intensified diarrhoea control fortnight begins
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 28
The Civil Surgeon Office, along with the Indian Academy of Paediatrics, jointly launched the Intensified Diarrhoea Control Fortnight at the Civil Hospital today.

Speaking on the occasion, Dr Sanjiv Hans, district immunization officer, said: “The Intensified Diarrhoea Control Fortnight (IDCF) is a set of activities to be implemented in an intensified manner from July 28 to August 8 with the aim of “zero child deaths due to childhood diarrhea”.

He said the core IDCF was divided into two weeks to focus on dedicated thematic areas that affect diarrhoeal mortality. In the first week (from 28 July to August 2), the focus would be on diarrhoea control-related activities, while in the second week (from August 4 to August 8), the focus would be on infant and young child feeding practices (as child nutrition status is a major factor deciding occurrence and intensity of diarrhoea). Dr Rajinder Gulati, Head, Paediatrics Department, Civil Hospital, said: “Childhood diarrhoeal diseases continue to be one of the major killers among children aged below 5 in many states contributing to 11 per cent of deaths of children aged below 5 in the country”.

He said almost all deaths due to diarrhoea could be averted by preventing and treating dehydration by use of ORS, administration of zinc tablets along with adequate nutritional intake by the child. Diarrhoea could be prevented with safe drinking water, sanitation, breastfeeding, appropriate nutrition and hand washing.

ORS Day on July 29

During this fortnight, all members of the Indian Academy of Paediatrics (IAP) will have ORS corners in their clinics and hospitals and patients will be encouraged to give ORS to the children suffering from diarrhoea. The IAP celebrates the last week of July as ORS Week and July 29 as ORS Day. This year, the theme of ORS Week is “Ensure its (ORS) prescription with full description”. Activities have been planned to educate the beneficiaries about the correct practices for preparing and using ORS.

Preventing diarrhoea

  • Children who are not dehydrated and have diarrhoea of less than 14-day period should be managed at home with fluids, zinc supplements and food.
  • Treat diarrhoea with some dehydration with Oral Rehydration Salt solution, zinc supplements and food.
  • Children with severe dehydration should be urgently referred to a hospital with mother giving frequent sips of ORS on the way.



Filing IT returns
Dept cautions against mobile applications, web portals
Manav Mander
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 28
The Income Tax (IT) Department has cautioned against using certain mobile applications and web portals assisting in filing IT returns and stated that one must use them at their own risk.

Since some tax payers find filing IT returns a daunting task, they use private portals that facilitate filing of return. These private portals essentially offer two types of plans - one where you are required to complete the process on your own and the other, where the portal’s help desk assists the tax payer.

One also has to pay fee ranging from Rs 300 to Rs 1,500 depending on the site and the requirements. Those earning less than Rs 5 lakh are offered this service for free.

“Tax payers should ensure that they are using a legitimate portal or an application. They should also read the privacy policy of the portals before going ahead with the process to ascertain how the information collected will be handled by these sites and applications,” said a senior IT official.

“Before registering on any portal, one should check if the firm’s policy states that the data won’t be shared with third parties without tax payer’s consent. Moreover, consider the track record of the company, too. You need to assure yourself that the sensitive information that you provide will not be misused. Therefore, do a background check to ascertain the return filing portal’s reputation and its parent company’s antecedents. Transacting through credible entities will provide some comfort,” said a senior IT official.

“Considering that the new version of forms on the department’s portal is simpler, attempt filing on the official site first. Switch to private sites only if you find the process on the department’s site cumbersome,” the official said.

“If you have a taxable income of over Rs 5 lakh, you must file the returns online. The process has become less complicated this year with the IT Department’s official e-filing site (incometaxindiaefiling.gov.in) introducing the much simpler Java utility,” said Jatinder Khurana, taxation lawyer.

Get ready to file your IT returns

Keep your bank statements, Form 16 issued by your employer and a copy of last year’s returns near you before you begin to file your return. You need to register yourself on the portal, where your PAN will act as your user ID. You can click on “Quick e-file ITR” on the left hand side menu and follow the instructions after selecting the applicable form. Pay the income tax due, if any, verify all the information and hit the “submit” key. Finally, if you haven’t filed the return using a digital signature, you need to print the verification form (ITR-V), sign it using a blue ink and send it to the IT Department’s central processing centre in Bangalore by ordinary or speed post, within 120 days of filing your returns electronically.



Fair price shop owners accused of overcharging
Our Correspondent

Mandi Ahmedgarh, July 28
Owners of certain fair price shops have been accused of charging extra money from beneficiaries of the Centre’s food security programme on the pretext of additional freight charges. There are others who have been accused of supplying rotten wheat to blue card holders.

Acknowledging the receipt of complaints from specially constituted committees for monitoring distribution of subsided foodgrain, legislator Iqbal Singh Jhoondan said remedial action had already been taken and owners of all fair price shops had been asked not to charge extra from the beneficiary families.

Investigations revealed that owners of certain fair price shops at local towns and surrounding villages falling under Sangrur district had been duping the blue card holders by charging extra money on the pretext of freight and handling charges.

Even after being confronted by members of specially constituted committees, the erring suppliers had argued that they were authorised to charge out-of-pocket expenses, which as per them include freight and handling cahrges.

Residents, led by former councillor Dilshad Khan, informed Jhoondan that even government officials responsible for proper supply of subsidised ration among members of poor families had declined to intervene in the matter. The beneficiaries had cited examples wherein rotten wheat was mixed with the supplied food grain.

Acknowledging the tendency of certain depot owners to dupe innocent beneficiaries, Jhoondan claimed that he had already taken up the issue with the officials concerned.

“As the state government has already announced to pay Rs 25 per quintal as freight and incidental charges to the owners of fair price shops, they have no right to charge anything extra from the beneficiaries of the scheme,” he said, adding that special committees had been constituted to monitor distribution of ration at the sanctioned prices only.

“Committees constituting members of various organisations have been authorised to check quantity and quality of the ration being supplied to the beneficiaries, besides ensuring that nothing extra was charged by the owners,” Jhoondan said.

Jhoondan said the families covered under the priority category were supposed to get wheat at Re 1 per kg under the Centre’s food security programme launched recently.



merger of zP schools
Teachers denounce state government
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 28
ETT teachers, working in schools under Zila Parishad, held a protest and burnt effigy of state government at Chatar Singh Park, here today. ETT Teachers have been urging the authorities concerned to shift their school from Zila Parishad to the Education Department.

Both the unions of ETT teachers, ETT Teachers’ Union and ETT Adhyapak Union, are now united and are protesting against the state government to press their demand.

The union leaders alleged that schools running under Zila Parishads are lacking facilities and are running under pathetic condition.

According to information, teachers at schools could not conduct house tests due to non-availability of funds. Teachers do not follow the instructions of the Education Department, since they have no association with them. Jaswinder Singh Sidhu, president, ETT Adhyapak Union, has been sitting on hunger strike in Mohali for the last nine days to press the demand. The activists of union have given a call to all the concerned to hold district-level routine protests.

Bhavdeep Singh, state committee member of ETT Adhyapak Union, said, “The union will sit on one-day hunger strike outside the residence of Cabinet Minister Sharanjit Singh Dhillon on July 31. The teachers will also organise a candlelight march on the same day”.

Bhavdeep said, “With the support of other unions of various departments, the ETT teachers will gherao Education Minister Daljit Singh Cheema on August 3.”

The state government had recruited around 13,000 teachers in 2006 and deputed them at schools running under Zila Parishads in the state. The teachers alleged that Zilla Parishads are incompetent to run the schools and students studying in these schools have been suffering in absence of even basic facilities.



Govt urged to pass Bill against communal violence
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 28
Urging the Central Government to pass the Bill against communal violence without any further delay, Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader HS Phoolka said under the Bill that was pending in the Rajya Sabha it was the duty of the government to give full compensation to victims of communal violence within 30 days.

“In Saharanpur riots the government has declared the compensation only for the three persons who have been killed. No compensation has been declared for shop owners whose shops were set afire,” he said.

Phoolka said he has been informed by the members of the Sikh community of Saharanpur that the District Magistrate had told them that no compensation for commercial property could be given.

“This is absolutely wrong. The state government is bound to compensate for the commercial property also. In earlier riots also, the state had given compensation for loss of commercial properties. In the Prime Minister compensation package declared in 2006, the compensation for commercial properties like shops and factories was also given.”



Importance of clean environment highlighted
Our Correspondent

Jagraon, July 28
To generate awareness regarding protection of environment and wage a war against pollution-causing activities, a paper reading competition and plantation drive was organised by the International Council of Ayurveda (ICA) at the Blossoms Convent School, Leelan Megh Singh, near here, today.

A large number of students participated in the competition organised under the guidelines of the Punjab State Council for Science and Technology (PSCST), Chandigarh. Jassika Chopra, Twinkle Kaura, Harjot Kaur and Gagandeep bagged the first, second, third and fourth positions, respectively, in the competition.

Earlier, Block Development and Panchayat Officer (BDPO), Jagraon, Nandeep Kaur inaugurated the programme.

In the opening session, Dr Ashok Sharma, president of the Jagraon chapter of the ICA, highlighted the need and importance of clean environment.

BDPO Nandeep Kaur and other dignitaries planted about 100 saplings on the occasion. School principal Amarjit Kaur Bajaj and Director HS Johal were among those others present.



‘Govt must help cooperative societies tide over crisis’
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 28
The government must come to the rescue of cooperative societies that are facing financial crisis, so that they may function on their own. This was said by Gurmel Singh Bharowal, a Union leader, while addressing a convention of Sehkari Sabhavan Karamchari Union Punjab at the Punjabi Bhawan.

On the occasion, Union leaders also discussed the problems being faced by employees working in cooperative societies.

Earlier, the convention was addressed by Manpreet Singh Ayali.

While presiding over the convention, Gurbhajan Singh Gill, a critic, said, “Considering the present condition of farmers, cooperative societies are the need of the hour. On one side, population is increasing while on the other, there is a scarcity of agricultural land. It is a matter of concern that even a farmer wants to buy his own tractor and other equipment related to agriculture, irrespective of the fact that they may have to pay debt for this later on. For such small farmers, cooperative societies are no less than a blessing.”

During the convention, it was also decided that the societies, with the help of public, will start a cleanliness drive for removing congress grass.

On the occasion, Gurdeep Singh Haans was elected as president, Sukhdev Singh Shahkot as general secretary and Gurmeet Singh Datewal as finance secretary.



Cancer victim’s body donated to CMCH
Manav Mander
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 28
Body of 82-year-old Moorti Devi from Sangrur was today donated for research purposes at the Anatomy Department of the Christian Medical College and Hospital (CMCH). Moorti Devi died due to cancer, leaving her desire to help those diagnosed with the deadly disease unfulfilled.

“She was suffering from liver cancer and wanted that after her death her body should be donated. She did not want to contribute towards pollution. She believed that cutting trees and wide spread of pollution was already a matter of concern. So, she wanted that her body should be used for a purpose,” said Santosh Kumar, son of Moorti Devi.

Sohan Lal, husband of Moorti Devi, said, “Moorti’s sister had also donated her body after death and she wanted to follow her footsteps.”

“Moorti used to say that the body turns into ashes and is of no use to anybody but only contributes towards pollution. Optimal use of the body can be made even after death,” said Sohan Lal.

Satish Sachdeva, member of Tarksheel Society of Ludhiana unit, said Moorti Devi is an example for those who think that soul in the body does not rest until the last rites are performed. “All such beliefs are just random thoughts and one should not believe in orthodox beliefs. They must rise above them,” said a member.

Tarksheel Society aims to disseminate rationalist ideas and scientific temper among the Indian people in order to eradicate religious fanaticism, communalism, caste system, untouchability and superstitions. Affiliated to the Federation of Indian Rationalist Associations, Tarksheel Society advocates separation of religion and education.



Bharatiya Janata Party spokesman lashes out at SAD
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 28
A BJP spokesman, Harminder Singh Malik, today lashed out at the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) accusing it of browbeating its junior alliance partner and ignoring the BJP leaders. “The Akali Dal has failed to honour its commitment to the alliance as has been noticed on issues related to industrial policy, sand-gravel mafia and imposition of taxes,” said Malik.

Accusing the SAD of not taking the BJP leaders into confidence on governance-related issues, Malik said, “Two of the BJP ministers have openly started talking about dharnas. The other BJP ministers are also unhappy with the functioning of the Akali Dal. The BJP councillors in Amritsar and industrialists from Ludhiana are extending complete support to the BJP ministers.” He said the alliance is under strain as the BJP workers have also started voicing their concern over the chinks in the alliance during the party meeting.



MC’s Ill-preparedness
Congress spokesperson to move HC
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 28
Parminder Mehta, spokesperson for Congress councillors, today said he would move the High Court against the Municipal Corporation for failing to make proper arrangements for the rainy season.

He said the season’s first rainfall had exposed the Municipal Corporation’s (MC) ill-preparedness for the monsoon.

He said neither the ‘barsati’ nullah was cleaned despite repeated requests to the authorities, nor illegal encroachments were removed due to which there was a problem of waterlogging in interior parts of the city.

“Residents had to bear losses as rainwater entered their houses. The MC should pay compensation to the residents who have suffered losses,” said Mehta.



Encroachments removed from public park
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 28
A room constructed in a public park in the ModeL Town area was demolished by officials of the building branch of Zone D today.

The ATP Monica Anand said they had received a complaint by residents that someone had constructed a room in the public park behind their houses and a temporary encroachment was also done by the encroachers.

The officials reached the spot and razed the room and also removed the encroachments.



NSS unit of GADVASU observes World Blood Donor Day
Shivani Bhakoo
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 28
The NSS volunteers of Guru Angad Dev Veterinary and Animal Sciences University (GADVASU) observed World Blood Donor Day, under the supervision of Dr Syed Shabih Hassan, NSS programme coordinator. Dr Hassan delivered a lecture on the topic ‘Save blood for saving mothers’.

He briefed about the importance of protecting people in conflict or in emergencies. He also spoke about taking care of pregnant mothers, providing emergency response, first-aid services, social care, prevention or alleviating sufferings from chronic diseases, thalassemic children, health disorder and enhancing human dignity, unity, humanity in the society.

The NSS Cell of GADVASU is working actively to create awareness about promoting blood donation deeds and organising more blood donation camps in the city. The cell is actively encouraging NGOs/organisations and residential societies to organise camp in their vicinity.

Dr Hassan highlighted do’s and don’ts and its importance on the occasion. He said a simple act of blood donation can save up to three lives. He also apprised the gathering of the objectives of donating blood and morality behind donation.



Trust comes to the rescue of needy students
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 28
Rattan Singh Daher (PCS retd) Yaadgari Charitable Trust has come forward to provide needy students and youngsters with assistance in completion of their studies. Barjinder Kaur, president of the trust, said, “The trust has decided to help students who have lost their father and have been facing difficulty in continuing their studies. Such students will be given training for becoming self-dependent.”

Barjinder said efforts will be put in to uplift the lifestyle of handicapped and underprivileged children. Students who are in the last year of ATT and ITI, but are facing problem in completion of their degree due to financial problems will also be helped.

Vice-president Gurpartap Singh, general secretary Muskan Gupta, joint secretary Ivneet Kaur, cashier Avtar Singh, media secretary Buta Singh, Sarabjeet Kaur and Gursewak Singh, executive member, were also present on the occasion.



Dr Kuldip Singh is chief of teachers’ union
Our Correspondent

Doraha, July 28
Dr Kuldip Singh, Senator, Panjab University, and Associate Professor of political science of Guru Nanak National College, Doraha, has been unanimously elected as the president of the Punjab and Chandigarh College Teachers’ Union (PCCTU).

The newly elected president said: “The PCCTU has been instrumental in bringing about dynamic and revolutionary developments in raising the standard of higher education.”

“But there has never been any smooth sailing for the union. Time and again, it has dived into troubled waters, faced numerous challenges and undergone tremendous upheavals but has never looked back and, hence, come out stronger than ever before,” he added.



Suspension of three Schoolteachers
Unions seek reinstatement
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 28
Various teachers’ unions staged a protest outside the office of the District Education Officer (DEO) at the Mini-Secretariat condemning the Education Minister’s orders of suspending three schoolteachers after the alleged rape of an 11-year-old girl at Government High School in Sunet village.

While condemning the Education Minister, DS Cheema, for suspending three women teachers, including the headmistress of Government High School, Sunet, in the wake of the rape of a minor girl during the school hours on July 5, the teachers said if the three teachers were not reinstated then they would carry out a massive protest against the government.

They also condemned the government’s move of ‘forcibly’ transferring the teachers and posting new teachers in place of them.



Training programme on agricultural marketing

The Punjab Agricultural Management and Extension Training Institute (PAMETI) organised a five-day training programme on Issues and emerging challenges in agricultural marketing at the Punjab Agricultural University (PAU). Extension officials of the state agriculture and allied departments attended the programme wherein PAU experts delivered talks and held discussions on recent issues in farm marketing.

The director of the PAMETI, Dr HS Dhaliwal, said, “Agriculture in the state has achieved production heights. Farmers toil so hard to make meager profits, but it is the middle man who takes the major share.” There is a dire need to encourage farmers to reduce the role of the middle men and sell the produce directly to the consumers, he said. Efficient marketing is crucial for earning better profits in agriculture, he stated, while adding that the training programme has been organised specifically for extension officials keeping this view. Dr Dhaliwal accompanied the participants to fruits and vegetables mandi, Ludhiana, and witness the live auction of the spot market. He also shared the Road Side Display model with the participants that can be used by farmers for on farm marketing of their products, thus eliminating the role of the middle man. Dr JS Sidhu highlighted the importance of market information systems that can be used by farmers in deciding how much to produce and when and where to sell. The market information is one of the important facilitating functions in the agricultural marketing system, he said. It facilitates marketing decisions, directs the competitive process and simplifies marketing mechanism. Dr Gagandeep Banga delivered a lecture on importance of relationship building in agriculture. In view of the good scope of the export of agricultural commodities, Dr Babita discussed the challenges being faced in this field.

Office-bearers elected

The Board of Management of Punjab Agricultural University (PAU) elected office-bearers during a meeting held under the chairmanship of Vice-Chancellor Dr Baldev Singh Dhillon on the university camp office, SAS Nagar (Mohali) on Monday. Dr RS Sidhu, officiating registrar, PAU, said Dr Jaskaran S Mahal has been appointed as Dean, College of Agricultural Engineering and Technology, Dr JS Brar as director (Seeds), Dr PS Aulakh as Additional Director Extension Education, Dr KS Thind, head, Department of Plant Breeding and Genetics, Dr HS Thind as head, Department of Soil Science, and Dr Sandeep Bains as head of the Department of Apparel and Textile Science. — TNS



Workers’ union holds meeting

The second convention of the Textile Hosiery Kaamgar Mazdoor Union was held in the city. Workers in a large number participated. One of the workers’ leader Rajwinder said even today many units in the city did not follow labour laws and due to it workers continue to suffer. The authorities should act strictly so that labour laws were implemented.

Blood donation camp

A blood donation camp was held at Aalamgir Sahib gurdwara on Monday. As many as 103 units of blood were collected. Speaking on the occasion, Taranjit Singh from an NGO said blood donation was the noblest form of donation and every individual should participate in it.

Sangat darshan postponed

The sangat darshan that was scheduled to be held on Tuesday at the Zone A office of the Municipal Corporation had been postponed for July 30, stated a press release.

General meeting

Lions Club’s Ludhiana centre held its general meeting under the presidentship of Sanjeev Monga. It was conducted by Neeru Marwaha, secretary of the club. Monga said a free heart and orthopaedic check-up camp would be organised by the club’s Ludhiana centre on August 31 at Gurdwara Singh Sabha in BRS Nagar in collaboration with the Lions Club, Ludhiana Greater. Monga said in the coming months free artificial limbs distribution camps, blood donation camps and free dental check-up camps would also be organised.

Chine-made kite string banned

Rajat Aggarwal, District Magistrate (DM), Ludhiana, has banned the sale of Chine-made synthetic plastic kite string in Ludhiana district, excluding the area of the Police Commissionrate, Ludhiana. He said these orders would remain in force till January 24, 2015. The DM issued these orders under Section 144 of the CrPC.

Industrialists meet Addl Secy

Gurmeet Singh Kular and Manjinder Singh Sachdeva, president and general secretary, respectively, of the Federation of Industrial and Commercial Organisation along with SS Dhillon, Director, Micro Small Medium Enterprises Development Institute, Ludhiana, met Amrendra Sinha, Additional Secretary-cum- Development Commissioner. During the meeting, they demanded that the government should start ‘cycle upgrade fund scheme’ for the cycle industry. “As trends of the global market is changing fast and the industry has to keep themselves upgraded, we request you to implement the cycle upgrade fund scheme for the industry,” said Kular.

PCC meeting

The Pradesh Congress Committee (PCC) urban development cell organised a meeting on Saturday evening. Member of Parliament Ravneet Singh Bittu was present. On the occasion, party leaders, including PCC urban development cell chairman Ramesh Joshi, stressed on the need to strengthen the party. Bittu said the experience and suggestions of veteran party leaders could be helpful in strengthening the party. — TNS



Gang of looters busted, 6 held

Ludhiana, July 28
The police claimed to have busted a gang of looters by arresting six persons who looted Rs 14.80 lakh, gold and diamond jewellery and laptop from a house in Basant Avenue 10 days ago.

The police recovered Rs 6.98 lakh of the looted amount, a country-made pistol, a gold ring, artificial jewellery and a laptop from their possession.

The accused have identified as Paramjit Singh, Suraj Kumar, Vinay Kumar, Ram Parsad, Monu and Sonu.

The police were looking for four persons who held a woman hostage in a house of a property dealer, Gurwinder Singh, in Basant Avenue and looted Rs 14.80 lakh, and other valuables on July 18.

Nilambari Vijay Jagdale, Deputy Commissioner of Police, said the police initiated investigations and arrested Paramjit Singh, alias prince, who is relative of Gurwinder Singh’s business partner Tarlocahn Sing Makar.

The police said Paramjit planned robbery with his five friends. The four accused - Vinay Kumar, Ram Parsad, Monu and Sonu - went to the victim’s house for robbery and Paramjit gave directions to them on phone. Suraj Kumar assisted them by sitting in a park outside the house. The police said during investigation, Paramjit confessed to his crime. He was also booked in two fraud cases at different police stations in the past. — TNS



Labourer attempts suicide
Tribune News Service

Ludhiana, July 28
A man attempted self immolation, two months after his wife committed suicide, at Shakti Nagar, here today. The person has been identified as Nand Kishore. According to the information, Kishore was, reportedly, upset as after the death of his wife, his children were staying with his in laws.

Kishore works as a labourer in a factory.

When he attempted self immolation today, other workers residing in same area came to his rescue and took him to a hospital.

Nand Kishore was rushed to the Civil Hospital, where he is undergoing treatment.

Newlywed commits suicide

A newlywed committed suicide at her parent’s house in Shimlapuri area, here today.

The deceased has been identified as Rajani (31).

According to the information, she got married in April this year.

She had come to visit her parents yesterday.

Today, when all the family members were not in the house, she hanged herself with a grill.

Ram Avtar, father of deceased, said when they returned home, he found Rajani in an unconscious state following which he immediately informed the police.

According to the police officials, the victim was upset due to a disease and so she took the drastic step of ending her life.

Elderly found murdered, daughter-in-law held

A 75-year-old woman was found murdered with a sharp-edged weapon in Rakbaon village, yesterday evening.

The police have arrested the daughter-in-law of the deceased in this regard. The accused has been identified as Karamjit Kaur (32).

According to information, Tej Kaur (75), a widow, of Rakba village was found murdered at her residence on Saturday.

The police officials said Karamjit had an illicit relationship with someone and her mother-in-law was acting a hurdle in the relationship.

Further investigation is on in this regard.



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