Cautioning non-resident Indians (NRIs) against the "sweet talk" of deputy chief minister Sukhbir Singh Badal, the Punjab Congress president, capt Amarinder Singh, on Saturday advised them to cross-check the claims against facts.
Five years ago, Sukhbir and his father, chief minister Parkash Singh Badal, made similar promises and done nothing on the ground, said Amarinder. "This was the prime reason why the Akali government did not have the courage to organise an NRI meet for a long time. Now they thought you might have forgotten all those commitments," he told the expatriates who have come to the state to participate in the Pravasi Punjabi Sammelan.
"Sukhbir cannot hide the state's bankruptcy and debt from the NRIs by just making a presentation in a five-star hotel," Amarinder said, adding that the NRIs moved around Punjab and were aware of its situation.
Inviting the NRIs for interaction, he said they were welcome to share their views with the Congress and get "the right feedback". The government had so much to conceal that it allowed only selective media inside the venue, he has added.
Sukhbir was always high on promise and low on delivery, said the former CM. "A few days ago, the vice-president of the youth wing of his party was arrested for assaulting a police officer and an NRI," Amarinder added. "Moreover, the same leader grabbed an NRI's property and built a night club on it; and the government helped the leader instead of the NRI."
Akalis had much to hide: MLA
Chandigarh: Congress legislator Kuljit Singh Nagra has charged the SAD-BJP government with not inviting the Congress legislators to the interaction with the NRIs. "The Akali government of Punjab does not believe in the true values of democracy," he said on Saturday in a statement issued here. "It appears that the government has too much to hide from the NRIs," he added.
Whatever little development the Akali government claimed to have done, be it the national highways or ambulances, was thanks to the aid from the union government, said Nagra, all had been created from the Centre's grants.