Union minister of state for external affairs General VK Singh (retd) on Tuesday blamed anti-incumbency for the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)’s poor performance in the Punjab assembly elections.
Singh, who was here to inaugurate the ‘Digi Dhan Mela’, said 10-year regime is long enough for any government and anti-incumbency was the major factor that worked against the BJP in the state. The BJP, which had contested from 23 assembly segments, managed to win only three seats in the Vidhan Sabha. Its alliance partner Shiromani Akali Dal won 15 seats, having contested from 94.
Ruling out drug menace as the reason for this poll drubbing, the former army chief said the issue had been blown out of proportion. He said drug abuse remains a concern in only a few areas on the India-Pakistan border.
‘STAY AWAY FROM ILLEGAL AGENTS’
Questioned on spate of murders of people of Punjabi origin in the Philippines, the Union minister said such problems arise when people, fascinated with foreign countries, move there illegally and then get trapped there.
“Unscrupulous travel agents have spread their network in Punjab. The Centre has been asking people to move abroad using services of authorised agents, whose information is available on the ministry’s website,” he said, adding that he had written to all chief ministers to rein in such illegal agents.
He said government is committed to safeguard the interests of Indian Diaspora across the globe.