In a renewed bid to establish rapport with party workers and voters, Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee (PPCC) president Partap Singh Bajwa launched his mass contact programme here on Monday.Making a candid confession, he said, "The Congress ignored its workers. But I promise you that this will not happen in future. The defeat in the 2012 assembly polls has awakened us."
Terming the poll manifesto a political party's agreement with the voters, Bajwa said the Shiromani Akali Dal-led coalition government had betrayed the public by making false promises.
"Either Sukhbir Badal should apologise to the public for telling lies, while admitting that the government has turned bankrupt and can't fulfil promises, or the Congress will force the government to keep its poll promises," he added.
Reading out the SAD manifesto, Bajwa said the unkept promises included power-surplus Punjab, free computers to students, Rs 1,000 stipend to unemployed youths, doubling the widow/old-age pension and Shagun scheme benefits.
He urged the party workers to expose the misdeeds of the SAD-BJP regime and propagate the achievements of the Congress-led UPA government at the Centre. He said Congress workers must feel proud of the UPA's feats, while listing various central flagship schemes under which hundreds of crores of rupees were given to Punjab.
"Don't allow the SAD to take the credit for central grants. Expose them in public," Bajwa said, giving a clarion call to party workers to gear up to ensure the party's victory in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections.
The PPCC chief added, "It is time the people of Punjab wake up to reality and defeat the communal and opportunistic alliance of the SAD-BJP to secure a better future for the state."
Others who addressed the meeting included Sukhdev Singh Libra, MP from Fatehgarh Sahib; Charanjit Singh Channi, PPCC vice-president, All India Congress Committee (AICC) secretary and MLA Kuljit Singh Nagra, former PPCC president Shamsher Singh Dullo and MLA Randeep Singh Nabha.
'Return to party fold'
Rupnagar: PPPC president Partap Singh Bajwa on Monday called upon all Congress leaders and workers who had left in the recent past to return to the party fold.
Talking to mediapersons at Morinda, Bajwa said the party would welcome leaders and workers who wanted to return, adding that they would be taken back after consulting the party MLAs concerned or candidates who had contested the 2012 assembly elections.
Bajwa was in Morinda to participate in a function organised to mark the return of former municipal council president Haripal into the Congress.Chamkaur Sahib MLA Charanjit Singh Channi and Haripal also spoke on the occasion.