Punjab Congress president Partap Singh Bajwa has asked chief minister Parkash Singh Badal to apologise to the people of Punjab for making "false claims of development in cities and villages".
At the annual political conference of his party on Gurta Gaddi Diwas of Guru Angad Dev here on Wednesday, Bajwa complimented the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MP from Amritsar, Navjot Singh Sidhu, for "speaking the truth" on money being diverted from the holy city. "His voice represents (the opinion of) all MPs and MLAs from the state's opposition and ruling parties, who are being discriminated against," he said.
Badal and his son, deputy chief minister Sukhbir Singh Badal, had portrayed a rosy picture of Punjab "through repeated lies and fake claims", said the state Congress president. "The Congress exposed the lies, and what Sidhu has said is an extension of that," he added.
The status of civic amenities in Amritsar was not different from that in other cities and towns of Punjab, said Bajwa. The Congress leader said that if Sukhbir was sincere towards Amritsar, he should first deposit `2,000 crore in bank and then begin the development works for which he had laid the foundation stones recently. "It is unlikely that he will do this," he said, "as the state government has no money."
"The Akali-BJP alliance came to power on the basis of seats won in the Majha and Doaba regions. Now these are the very areas discriminated against," Bajwa added.
'Govt to blame for rise of drug mafia'
Punjab had become India's drug capital and 70% of its youth were under the influence, said state Congress president Partap Singh Bajwa, blaming the chief minister for the rise of drug mafia.
He referred to the statement of former additional director general of police (prisons) Shashi Kant in the Punjab and Haryana high court about the ruling-party leaders who shielded drug smugglers, and said the former officer should instead have made the list public.
He wants the Central Bureau of Information to look into the alleged electricity theft in border villages of the Khemkaran assembly segment under the alleged patronage of legislator Virsa Singh Valtoha. State Congress vice-president OP Soni, local legislator Ramanjit Singh Sikki, and party leaders Gurchet Singh Bhullar, Fateh Jang Singh Bajwa, Harminder Singh Gill, and Gurvinder Singh Mamanke were present.