Accusing the Modi government of trying to claim credit for the compensation already announced by Congress government to 1984 riot victims, the Congress on Friday claimed that `166 crore compensation announced by the Centre for the riot victims is being taken from the funds earmarked by the previous UPA government.
Punjab Congress spokesperson Nimisha Mehta said that during the UPA regime, the government had allocated `712 crore for the 1984 riot victims. The decision was taken in 2006 following which the first instalment of the compensation was disbursed among the victims, she added.
"Due to ongoing legal cases, a sum of `200 crore out of the allocated fund could not be distributed by the UPA government. It is the same money out of which `166 crore have been announced by as compensation by the Modi government," said Mehta.
"By announcing just `166 crore out of the unutilised funds of `200 crore, to be disbursed as compensation, the Modi government is cheating the victims by keeping on hold the remaining amount", she added.
Urging the government to release the compensation at the earliest, Mehta said that if BJP wished to do something on their own for the welfare of riot victims than they should come out with atleast Rs 1500 new crore package of their own. With the sole of aim of welfare of victims the congress government, earmarked Rs 712 crore under the guidance of Smt Sonia Gandhi, for compensation.
Nimisha said Akali's leaders should now explain whether it was congress or Modi government which is actually adopting a stepmotherly treatment towards sikh interests by giving such a small amount as compensation to the thousands of victims.