At a time when the cotton crop is facing the whitefly attack, Union minister for food processing and member of Parliament from Bathinda Harsimrat Kaur has announced the setting up two textile skill development centres in Bathinda and Mansa districts.
The sulking whitefly pest has created havoc in the cotton- growing region in Punjab and both the state government and farmers themselves have been predicting huge losses this season.
aunching the insurance scheme under the Pradhan Mantri Bima Suraksha Yojana (PMBSY), Harsimrat said that the state government has got a formal communiqué from the Union textile industries ministry regarding the setting up of both these skill development centres in the cotton-dominated belt.
"The idea of such a centre was floated under a scheme of the Union ministry much earlier, but the centres were approved eventually only two days ago and we have decided to set up these centres in rural areas instead of urban areas," Harsimrat said.
She added that around 8,000 youngsters will be imparted skill development training regarding the textile industry besides making suitable arrangements for employment of the trained youth.
"Even deputy chief minister Sukhbir Singh Badal will meet Union ministry officials before holding meetings with reputed textile units to set up these centers," Harsimrat said.
Meanwhile, expressing concern over the attack of whitefly, Harsimrat said it was unfortunate that the farmer fraternity of the state is always facing one or the other problem due to uncertain weather conditions every season.
"The Punjab government has already ordered a girdawri of the affected crop so that the farmers could be adequately compensated for the losses."
Welcomes Bombay high court ruling on Maggi
Differing over the Punjab government's decision on a ban over Maggi for one year, Harsimrat welcomed the August 13 decision of the Bombay high court of lifting the ban on Maggi.
The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) had banned Maggi after it found excessive quantity of lead mono sodium glumate (MSG) in it. Following the FSSAI ban, the Punjab government had banned its sale for one year.
"It is good that the Bombay high court has come up with a welcoming decision over Maggi noodles," said Harsimrat, who slammed the FSSAI for creating fear among food processing units.
Badal's photo disappears from bicycles
Already facing flak for chief minister Parkash Singh Badal's photo on '108' ambulances, photos of the CM disappeared from the cycles distributed to government school students under the Mai Bhago scheme following orders of the Supreme Court regarding photographs of politicians under government welfare schemes. Earlier, the CM's photograph was fixed in front of the basket.
The Union minister also distributed 135 cycles to girl students of government girls senior secondary, Mall Road, here.
However, students had to wait in humid weather conditions for long before Harsimrat reached the school for formal distribution of cycles. She was behind schedule by two hours.