People’s Party of Punjab (PPP) president Manpreet Singh Badal on Wednesday demanded that the government should immediately make a legislation to confiscate the property of those convicted of drug peddling.
Addressing a gathering at the party’s political conference at the Maghi Mela at Muktsar, Manpreet said the drug problem in the state is a reality and the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) was trying to mislead people by saying that it was just a ploy to defame the state.
Manpreet said, “The fact is when the world talked of terrorism in Punjab, it was a reality, and now when everyone is discussing drugs, it is a fact that the state is facing the problem.”
Manpreet proposed a two-point formula to combat the problem. He said all political parties must dissociate themselves from drug dealers and take a pledge that they would not distribute intoxicants during elections.
He also called upon chief minister Parkash Singh Badal to convene an all-party meeting to evolve a consensus against drugs where the political parties must publicly make a written commitment against the use of drugs during elections.
Questioning the SAD’s sincerity in dealing with the issue besides the issue of release of Sikh prisoners, he said both the issues could have been resolved much earlier had the SAD’s intentions been clear, but they existed even after eight years of the Akali rule.
Slamming the BJP, Manpreet said that on the one hand, the party was raising the issue of drugs, while on the other, it is backing the SAD.
Manpreet, who had contested the parliamentary election from Bathinda on the Congress symbol, lambasted both the SAD and BJP, but didn’t talk about the Congress. When asked to comment later, he said, “A wise army general does not open war at two fronts simultaneously; as the SAD is responsible for the problems afflicting the state, it is appropriate to target the SAD.”
Manpreet presented a 10-point resolution before the gathering. In the political resolutions, he demanded that the state and central governments, instead of making huge earnings by imposing taxes, should reduce the prices of petrol and diesel in proportion to the reduction in prices of crude oil.
He called for a political solution to the issue of huge debt on the state and demanded appointing a strong lokpal at the state level and a lokayukta at the district level to check corruption, demanding that the lokpal should not be a resident of Punjab.
His other resolutions included introducing genetically modified BT maize, one lakh jobs to the jobless every year, to stop politicisation of Punjab police and Rs 3 lakh health insurance to families with an annual income below Rs 2 lakh per year.