Former chief minister Prem Kumar Dhumal on Sunday said that by issuing statements, the Congress leaders are rubbing salt on the wounds of people affected by the recent heavy rains in Himachal Pradesh.
“Congress leaders are trying to mislead the people by issuing statements. They think that their statements will convince the people of the state. Grievances could not be addressed by press statements,” said Dhumal in a statement issued here.
The BJP leader said that rains had devastated several houses, cattle shelters, bridges, roads, village paths, but the government and the Congress leaders are busy in issuing statements.
Dhumal said the government has given a relief of Rs. 500 each to some villagers who had lost their cattle shelters. “How can one build a shelter for cattle in Rs. 500?” said Dhumal.
He said that instead of issuing media statements, these leaders should assess the loss due to heavy rains.
Dhumal also accused the government of snatching the rights of elected representatives in panchayati raj institutions. While the Panchayati raj representatives are working on the ground level, the government has issued an order reducing their financial powers.
“The government has imposed a ban on zila parishad and panchayat samitis representatives to distribute funds which is a step to weaken the Panchayati raj institutions,” said Dhumal while adding that it was evident that the government under the leadership of chief minister Virbhadra Singh wanted to abolish the provisions of the 73rd constitutional amendment, steered by former prime minister Rajiv Gandhi.
He said that such a ban should be rolled back and panchayati raj representatives should be given free hand to work in their respective areas. “PRI representatives work on the ground level of democracy and imposing restrictions on fund allocation will only hit the interest of common man,” added Dhumal.