Voicing doubts over the UPA government's intentions over the tabling of the national food security Bill in the last leg of its tenure, Punjab cabinet minister Bikram Majithia claimed that the Congress lacked in seriousness and commitment towards the poor, as it had failed to come with a pro-poor policy for more than nine years of its rule at the Centre.
Describing the draft Bill as a "poor carbon copy" of the SAD-BJP government's most successful 'Atta-Dal' scheme, Majithia pointed out that the UPA regime had never bothered to take care of the interests of the poor since it had turned the lives of common people into a nightmare by unleashing inflation.
Addressing a public rally in Chogawan, the SAD leader accused the Congress of double standards. "The Congress-led UPA government has been vehemently criticising the Punjab government for providing Rs 5,000-crore subsidy to the state farmers, who were contributing 50% of the nation's food kitty while on the other hand was planning to provide Rs 2 lakh crore subsidy on just two schemes (food security bill and transfer of direct subsidy) in the bank accounts of beneficiaries just to retain power at any cost.
"The total collections of Central taxes were around Rs 4 lakh crore and spending around 50% on these two politically motivated schemes in itself explained the desperation of the UPA to retain power at the Centre," Majithia remarked
Besides food, the countrymen were also facing a number of other problems but the UPA government had always turned a blind eye to these by adopting a pro-rich and anti-poor stance, alleged the minister.
Reacting sharply to Punjab Congress chief Paratp Singh Bajwa's statement that economic package should be extended to certain border districts of the state, Majithia said that Bajwa should do away with micro-level thinking and think beyond 'halqas' and 'ilaqaas'.
Earlier, accompanied by district planning committee chairman Vir Singh Lopoke, the minister inaugurated a 220-KW sub-station at Chogawan and a new building at Lopoke for patwaris and kanangos.