Defending Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee (PPCC) chief Partap Singh Bajwa over his terror links as alleged by the Akalis, state party affairs co-incharge Harish Chaudhary on Wednesday said if there is an iota of truth in these charges the SAD government should have started investigations into this.
“The SAD has been running the government in Punjab for last eight years and if there was Bajwa’s involvement in any unlawful thing, why the government has not initiated investigation into these charges?” questioned Chaudhary, who was in Jalandhar to take part in a conclave of MNREGA workers along with former union minister CP Joshi.
Chaudhary said Bajwa is clean but the SAD has the habit to rake up baseless issues, whenever the government is cornered on the issue of drugs, especially when it comes to allegations against revenue minister Bikram Majithia.
He said the Congress was united on the issue of demanding a CBI inquiry into the drug haul case and whatever statements Captain Amarinder Singh has made earlier in this regard were his personal view.
“Even Shakeel Ahmad, party affairs in-charge in Punjab, has clarified it so many times that Amarinder’s view of not seeking CBI probe in the case as his own and the party has nothing to do with it. Even on Tuesday, the Congress Legislative Party (CLP) has maintained that during the coming winter session, the party will seek Majithia’s resignation,” he said.
Centre changing MNREGA to benefit industries: CP Joshi
Former union rural development minister CP Joshi claimed that the BJP-led government at the Centre wants to bring major changes in the Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act (MNREGA) to secure the interests of industrialists and the rich.
He said the Centre is considering changing the law as MNREGA has become an instrumental tool in providing unskilled rural population a chance to earn at their villages.
“Due to MNREGA, poor unskilled workers, especially from backward areas, have stopped migrating to other states for want of work. The industrialists say they are short of labour. So just to benefit the rich, the Modi-led government wants to change MNREGA,” said Joshi.
Joshi demanded that the Centre should restrict itself from bringing any change which may affect crores of people.
He further alleged that since the MNREGA was implemented by the Congress and it became popular among the poor within a short span of time, the BJP-led state governments are not implementing it in letter and spirit and are deliberately trying to create confusion over this.
“These governments, including in Punjab, are not providing the minimum wages to card holders and the wages are not being increased as per the price index. Even as in the Act, it is clear that state governments should increase wages as per prince index every year,” said Joshi.