On the eve of Punjab Day (November 1), the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) on Friday said successive Congress governments at the Centre were responsible for the “criminal neglect” of Punjab and its people, due to which various important issues concerning the state remained unresolved.
“Chandigarh was not designated as the capital of Punjab after reorganisation. Punjabi-speaking areas were kept out of Punjab following a well-planned conspiracy. Even the river waters of Punjab were awarded to other states, bypassing the laid-down principle of riparian rights,” said SAD general secretary Maheshinder Singh Grewal.
He added that since the Congress was no longer in power, there was hope that the new government would undo the injustice meted out to the state.
“The SAD will also take up these issues vigorously and do everything possible while remaining within the ambit of the Constitution to achieve its goals,” Grewal added.
He said the SAD felt that Punjab was not getting its due for coming to the country’s aid when it faced a food crisis as well as when it fought the nation’s war against terror.
“Punjab fulfilled the nation’s food requirements at the cost of its land and subsoil water. It also incurred a huge debt fighting the nation’s war against terrorism. Now we are in need of a loan waiver as well as a financial package to put the state’s finances back on track. We are hopeful that this demand will receive the urgent attention it requires from the Centre,” Grewal said.