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Poll code: Badal govt's flagship freebies still being distributed

Though the Election Commission of India enforced the model code of conduct in Punjab on Wednesday noon, the flagship schemes of Akali-BJP government are still on full swing in Patiala district.

punjab Updated: Jan 05, 2017 22:14 IST
Harinder Singh
Harinder Singh
Hindustan Times
Badal govt,wheat,Atta Dal scheme
The food and civil supplies department of Punjab government distributing free wheat to the below poverty line residents of Lalochhi near Patiala on Thursday.(Bharat Bhushan/HT Photo)

Despite the model code of conduct being imposed in the state on Wednesday, the flagship schemes of the Akali-BJP government are on full swing in Patiala district.

The distribution of wheat to the blue card holders under the “Atta Dal” scheme through public distribution system (PDS) is on full pace. On Thursday morning, a day after the enforcement of the code, a truck loaded with wheat stopped near a gurdwara at Lalochhi village under Samana assembly segment, 30km from here. The local food and supplies department officials and the depot holder made announcement the wheat was being distributed to the BPL card holders.

The flagship scheme was launched by the Badal government in 2007 in the first term of the SAD-BJP alliance for below poverty line (BPL) families in the state.

Special cards were also allotted to them bearing the pictures of chief minister (CM) Parkash Singh Badal and Punjab food and civil supplies minister Adaish Partap Singh Kairon. Under the scheme, the government provides wheat at Rs 1 per kg and pulses at Rs 20 per kg to about 30 lakh blue card holders in the state.

Deputy commissioner-cum-district election officer Ramvir said the wheat under the scheme was released before the announcement of the poll code.

Congress candidate from Patiala rural Brahm Mohindra alleged that the government wanted to woo voters with freebies. The ruling party leaders have also laid at least 15 foundation stones after the enforcement of the poll code.

First Published: Jan 05, 2017 18:39 IST