The Congress on Friday staged a walkout in the Vidhan Sabha in protest against the government’s “dilly-dallying” approach in presenting the white paper on the number of drug smugglers and police officers nabbed by the government for their role in supplying drugs.
In a question raised by Congress MLA Rana Gurmeet Singh Sodhi, it was demanded that the government name the police officers involved in drug distribution and the smugglers arrested by the police from January 1 this year and the action taken against them.
As the question was directed at deputy CM Sukhbir Badal, who holds home portfolio, he requested the speaker to grant extension to the question for Monday or Tuesday, to which the opposition reacted sharply, stood up from the benches, shouting slogans against the government and walked out.
Earlier, joining Sodhi, leader of opposition in the house Sunil Jakhar sought from the government to present a white paper on the issue. To this, the deputy CM said health minister Surjit Kumar Jyani had replied on the issue.
“He (Jyani) has spoken about the number of de-addiction centres opened in Punjab, but we want the government to clear its stand on how effectively it has broken the supply chain and how many big smugglers have been nabbed,” demanded Jakhar, pointing out that the particular question came to the government a fortnight ago, and it was still seeking extension, which meant that it was not effectively dealing with drugs.
USURPING NRI PROPERTY
Congress MLA Balbir Singh Sidhu asked the government to divulge the fate of Youth Akali leader Harjinder Singh, who was allegedly trying to usurp the property of an NRI in Mohali, by preparing fake documents and was caught in the PUDA office along with other accomplices. Replying to the question, revenue minister Bikram Singh Majithia, who is also the Youth Akali Dal president, said the Mohali SSP was looking into the matter and the property would be restored to the owner.
‘AMEND RTE ACT’
The House passed a resolution seeking amendment in the Centre’s Right of Children to Free and Compulsory Education Act. As per the resolution moved by state education minister Daljeet Singh Cheema, the board examinations should be conducted for classes 5 and 8. As per the RTE act, there is no provision for the exam, as proposed by Punjab. The resolution would be sent to the Centre for required amendment in the act.
‘WHERE IS Rs. 2,100 CR OF UPA GOVT?’
In the Zero Hour, Congress MLA Ajit Inder Singh Mofar asked the government to comment on the havoc caused by the polluted water flowing in the Ghaggar. Replying to it, deputy CM Sukhbir Badal said the government was seeking funds from the Centre.
Reacting to the deputy CM’s comments, CLP leader Sunil Jakhar, referring to a resolution moved by CM Parkash Singh Badal in 2010 thanking Jairam Ramesh, the environment and forest minister in the UPA government, for giving ? 2,100 crore for cleaning of Punjab rivers which, according to the resolution, is 22% of total funds given across the country. Jakhar asked the state government to speak about the fate of the funds sent by the UPA government.
SUKHBIR IN A FIX
As Jakhar asked the government to clarify on the Rs. 1,200 crore sanctioned by the previous UPA-led government at the Centre for works in 35 cities and towns of the state under the Jawaharlal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission(JNNURM), Sukhbir said the funds were approved when the scheme was called off. “So why did you impose property tax in the garb of JNNURM?” Jakhar asked and the deputy CM had no answer.