With the non-development of Patiala becoming a major poll issue, former chief minister and Congress deputy leader in the Lok Sabha Captain Amarinder Singh on Saturday accused chief minister Parkash Singh Badal of discriminating against the city.
"As CM, I never ignored Lambi (constituency from where Badal won), whereas he has discriminated against Patiala," said Amarinder while addressing a press conference along with Preneet Kaur.
He said that it was unbecoming of a CM to say that if the Congress candidate was elected from Patiala there will not be any development. "This is his (Badal) second visit to Patiala," pointed out the Captain and said, "CMs do not discriminate. Unlike Badal, I always ensured a fair deal for Bathinda and Lambi."
He questioned about the Rs. 260 crore his government had left with the Patiala Development Authority, which he had set up exclusively for the city, in 2007. He said, "The moment the Akalis came to power the money was shifted to Lambi."
He said, "It is for the people of Patiala to see and compare our rule of five years with their seven-and-a-half-years' regime."
He further said that MLAs and MPs had a limited role in development as they could only plead and demand. Congress candidate for the Patiala Urban bypoll Preneet Kaur said, "Just in the past year, I have spent more than half of the Rs. 5 crore Member of Parliament Local Area Development (MPLAD) fund for Patiala city."
Referring to Badal, the Captain also asked what happened to the Rs. 150 crore given by the union health ministry for upgrading the Government Rajindra Hospital.
Saying that the money had been given in February, he added that nothing had been done in six months and that nothing was known about what happened to the sum. "It has probably been shifted to Bathinda and Lambi," remarked Singh.
He also took a dig at Badal for comparing the SAD-BJP rule to Maharaja Ranjit Singh's regime by saying, "Why are you insulting Maharaja Ranjit Singh?"