01112022-LT-01.qxd 11/1/2022 12:49 AM Page 1 c m y b Ludhiana TRIBUNE WOMEN SARPANCHES TOLD TO LEAD BATTLE AGAINST DRUGS PAGE 2 Panchayat Minister Kuldeep Dhaliwal urges women sarpanches to launch a war against drugs in their villages. FORECAST MAINLY CLEAR SKY PAGE 3 AKHIL SACHDEVA MAKES IT TO PUNJABI MUSIC INDUSTRY ANNE HATHAWAY IS ‘PICKIER’ ABOUT HER ROLES NOW Singer Akhil Sachdeva recently made his debut in the Punjabi music industry with Main Pyar Suneya Si. MAX 30°C | MIN 16°C | YESTERDAY MAX 30°C | MIN 16°C SUNSET TUESDAY 5:38 PM Actress Anne Hathaway, 39-year-old, has become ‘pickier’ when it comes to work since she had children. SUNRISE WEDNESDAY 6:42 AM TUESDAY | 1 NOVEMBER 2022 | LUDHIANA Official booked for misappropriating PMAY-U funds Spike in farm fires, 200% jump within week Air quality also takes a hit, reaches ‘unhealthy’ AQI of 168, making city fifth most polluted in state Nitin Jain Tribune News Service Tribune News Service TRIBUNE PHOTOS: HIMANSHU MAHAJAN Ludhiana, October 31 In a sudden spike, farm fires have registered a whopping 200 per cent jump in Ludhiana district during the past one week, the official data has confirmed. From 257 on October 25, the cases of stubble burning reached 754 on October 31, which was an increase of 193.39 per cent, the figures compiled by the Punjab Remote Sensing Centre (PRSC), Ludhiana, have revealed. The significant rise in crop residue burning incidents, despite the sustained campaign launched against the menace by the district administration, has adversely affected the air quality, turning Ludhiana the fifth most polluted city in Punjab on Monday with an air quality index (AQI) of 168, which is considered “unhealthy”. The dip in the air quality led to a thick cover of smog that enveloped the state’s biggest and largest district, in terms of area and population, forcing residents to gasp for clean air and causing trouble, especially for children, the aged and those suffering from respiratory ailments. The official data, a copy of which is available with The Tribune, showed that the cases of stubble burning were Farmers set paddy stubble on fire at Ladhowal in Ludhiana on Monday; and (right) a thick cover of smog envelops the city in the wake of the sudden rise in farm fires. SITUATION BETTER FIGURES FOR THE WEEK THAN BEFORE DATE FARM FIRES AQI Machinery has been Oct 25 19 195 43 184 fanned out to the fields to check Oct 26 Oct 27 64 175 farm fires. Even as more Oct 28 89 156 farmers are coming forward to Oct 29 105 174 shun the age-old menace, those Oct 30 100 180 indulging in stubble burning are 96 168 also being dealt with as per law. Oct 31 YEARLY FIGURES Our sustained campaign has so 2020 1,316 far helped us to keep the 2021 826 situation much better than 2022 754 previous years. ❝ ❞ SURABHI MALIK, DEPUTY COMMISSIONER on a constant rise for the past one week with the daily count going up from just 19 on October 25 to this sea- (FIGURES FROM SEPTEMBER 15 TO OCTOBER 31 FOR EACH YEAR) son’s highest of 105 on October 29 and 100 on October 30, which was more than a fivefold jump. The daily farm MOST POLLUTED CITIES IN STATE CITY Amritsar Mohali Patiala Jalandhar Ludhiana Mandi Gobindgarh Khanna Ropar Bathinda AQI 187 185 182 174 168 165 164 141 98 (SOURCE: PRSC & CPCB) The PM2.5 concentration of 89.4μg/m³ on October 31 was 17.9 times the WHO annual air quality guideline value. fires reported in the district came meagrely down to 96 on October 31, which was still a rise of over 405 per cent com- pared to October 25. The past week’s trend of daily farm fires indicated that the incidents went up from 19 on October 25 to 43 on October 26, 64 on October 27, 89 on October 28, 105 on October 29, 100 on October 30, and 96 on October 31. With this, the cumulative total of stubble burning cases recorded this paddy harvesting season since September 15 have increased from 257 on October 25 to 300 on October 26, 364 on October 27, 453 on October 28, 558 on October 29, 658 on October 30, and 754 on October 31. However, the figure for this year’s kharif season still remains lower than previous two years. Ludhiana district had reported a cumulative total of 826 incidents of crop PAGE 4 residue burning till October 31 in 2021, while the figure was 1,316 in 2020. On the air quality front, Ludhiana’s pollution level, recorded by the Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB), has gone up from AQI 156 on October 28 to AQI 174 on October 29, and touched AQI 180 on October 30 before coming down to AQI 168, with PM2.5 concentration of 89.4μg/m³, on October 31, which is 17.9 times more than the World Health Organisation (WHO) annual air quality guideline value, making Ludhiana the fifth most polluted city in the state. However, this is still better than AQI 195 recorded here on October 25, AQI 184 on October 26 and AQI 175 on October 27. Ludhiana, October 31 An official deployed at the Municipal Corporation, Ludhiana, has been booked for allegedly misappropriating funds under the Central Government’s Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojna - Urban (PMAYU), a housing scheme. The suspect has been identified as Amandeep Kaur of Janta Nagar, here. A case under Sections 409 and 420 of the IPC has been registered against her at the Division No. 1 police station. Following a complaint filed by an RTI activist, Simratpal Singh Kalsi, an additional commissioner of the MC, conducted an inquiry into the allegations of irregularities that were levelled against the official. The complainant had alleged that the official, who was deployed as MIS expert (CLTC) at the MC, Ludhiana, had made herself and her family members as beneficiaries under the scheme in a wrong manner. During the probe, it came to light that the official allegedly misappropriated funds to the tune of Rs 5.25 lakh. She had made herself, her mother and her sister beneficiar- COMMITTEE FORMED TO PROBE PAYMENTS After the inquiry into the allegations against the official deployed at the Municipal Corporation, Ludhiana, the MC Commissioner formed a committee of six members to probe payments released to beneficiaries under the Central Government housing scheme. ies in the scheme. For allegedly misusing the funds, an FIR has been registered against her on the basis of a complaint filed by Kalsi. After the inquiry into the allegations against the official, the MC Commissioner also formed a committee of six members to probe the payments released to the beneficiaries under the housing scheme here. The committee was asked to check whether the payments under the scheme were released to eligible beneficiaries or not. The committee, headed by a Joint Commissioner of the MC, was asked to file a report within 15 days. Notably, Pradhan Mantri Awas Yojana – Urban (PMAY-U), is a flagship mission of the Central Government. Man held with heroin worth ~1.25 crore Risky route Tribune News Service Ludhiana, October 31 The police have arrested a man and allegedly recovered 270 gm of heroin from his possession. He has been identified as Mangat Singh of Hambran village here. The cost of the seized heroin is said to be around Rs 1.25 crore. According to the police, the suspect was arrested at a checkpoint near a food park in Ladhowal here. A case under various sections of the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (NDPS) Act has been registered against Mangat Singh at the Ladhowal police station, Ludhiana. 38 yrs on, wounds not healed: Victims 1984 RIOTS Harshraj Singh Tribune News Service Putting their lives at risk, people cross rail tracks at the Ludhiana railway station on Monday. PHOTO: ASHWANI DHIMAN Man poses as Interpol officer, arrested Ludhiana, October 31 The police have arrested an imposter, posing as a senior Interpol officer. He has been identified as Randhir Singh of Abdullapur Basti. ACP Ramandeep Singh and SHO Arshpreet Kaur said the suspect was caught at a checkpoint. When he was stopped for checking, he introduced himself as an Interpol officer and asked policemen to see a logo on his car. When the suspect was asked to verify his claim, he showed an identity card that was later found to be fake. During interrogation, Randhir admitted that he was not an Interpol official and his ID card was also fake. To avoid toll tax and police checkpoints, he had kept the fake ID card. A case has been registered. — TNS Man accuses policemen of implicating him infake cases Tribune News Service WANTED IN FOUR CASES Ludhiana, October 31 Jatinder Singh Jindi, who is a suspect in various cases, including an attempt-to-murder case, has released a video accusing the police of trying to implicate him in fake cases. A few days ago, the police made a failed attempt to arrest him. Jindi, who is a resident of Indra Colony, Rahon Road, said he along with his aide were going in a car on October 27 when three car-borne persons, who were wearing civil dress, attempted to stop him near a fuel station. He said when the trio brandished a pistol and asked him to come out of the car, he thought that they were gangsters who Jatinder Singh Jindi faces several FIRs and in most of the cases, he was either acquitted or had reached compromise with opposite parties. At present, he is wanted in four cases, including attempt to murder. had come to kill him. Afterwards, he managed to escape. Notably, the three persons were policemen in civvies. While chasing him, the police personnel had also allegedly fired at Jindi’s car. Later, the police booked him and his aide for allegedly attempting to run over the policemen with his vehicle. Jindi said he had not opened fire at the police and he was unaware that the three persons were police officials. He said he had not tried to run over them. He said he had spent Rs 10 lakh for the construction of a police post and also helped the police to pacify the people who were protesting against them. But now, the police have defamed him by lodging fake cases, he alleged. Jindi added that he should not be defamed. He faces several FIRs and in most of the cases, he was either acquitted or had reached compromise with opposite parties. At present, he is wanted in four cases, including attempt to murder. c m y b Ludhiana, October 31 Though 38 years have passed since the 1984 riots, dark shadows of those terrifying incidents can still be clearly seen on the faces of affected families. Victims of the 1984 antiSikh riots said here today that they had lost their family members 38 years ago but the wait for justice had been getting longer. The victims are also upset over the “slow pace” of court proceedings. Their wounds have not healed, they said. A 68-year-old woman, Bhupinder Kaur, said her five family members, including her husband, were killed by rioters. She was sad as many of the accused have not been punished to date. Recalling the horror, she said on the morning of November 1, 1984, when over 100 armed people attacked her house, her husband went out. They grabbed him by his hair, threw him down and beat him. They put a tyre around his neck and set him on fire. When a flammable material was thrown at her house, it caught fire. Her two brothers-in-law, uncle and a son of sister-in-law were killed Kin of affected families of the 1984 riots at Dugri in Ludhiana. PHOTO: INDERJEET VERMA UPSET OVER ‘SLOW’ COURT PROCEEDINGS Victims of the 1984 riots said on Monday that they had lost their family members 38 years ago but the wait for justice had been getting longer. They are also upset over the “slow pace” of court proceedings. Their wounds are yet to be healed, they said. by the rioters, she said. Living a miserable life after the loss of four members of her family, Gurmail Kaur said the government had given some relief to affected families but many who were involved in riots were enjoying political patronage, and it was like rubbing salt in their wounds. Another victim, Gurdev Kaur, said her husband used to drive a taxi and had gone somewhere to pick-up passengers but he never returned. She was later informed by somebody that her husband was killed by rioters but his body could not be found. Surjeet Singh, president of the Danga Peerat Welfare Society, said: “Around 10,000 Sikhs were massacred by rioters between the period from October 31 to the first week of November in 1984 in Delhi, Kanpur and other parts of the country. Many of the accused who were behind the incident have not been punished to date. Even some of them passed away. The riot-affected families are still forced to suffer and are waiting for justice.” In memory of those who were killed in the 1984 riots and for the long-pending demand for justice, a candle march will be carried out from CRPF Colony, Dugri, on November 4. Meanwhile, Surjeet Singh also alleged that the red cards (ID cards for victims of the 1984 riots) of around 135 families were cancelled in the past. He demanded from the state government to resume the cards. Otherwise, they would be forced to launch an agitation.
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