Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee president Capt Amarinder Singh today urged people to give him just five years to launch Punjab back on the path of progress and development and bring the smile back on every Punjabis face. He also reiterated that he was committed under oath to finish corruption and drugs from the state in a time bound manner.
“Unlike others I am not asking for 25 years, just give me five years and I will ensure that Punjab regains the glory it has lost”, he said amidst thumping applause by an audience of over 5000 people which had gathered to interact with him over the fifteenth edition of the ‘Halqe vich Captain’ programme organised here today.
Asked as what purpose will be solved with the resignation of the Congress MLAs and MPs in the event of the Supreme Court of India ruling against Punjab on the matter of SYL, the former Chief Minister clarified, “after resigning we will go back to people and seek their mandate and majority in the Vidhan Sabha to bring in a legislation to save our waters on the same pattern I did in 2004 when I brought in Punjab Termination of Agreements Act”.
He said, he respected the authority and the verdict of the Supreme Court, whatever it may be, at the same time he was committed to watch the interests of Punjab in a legal and constitutional way.
“And let me clarify and reiterate that there is always a constitutional and legislative way also to undo a wrong or injustice and that is why we will resign and go to the people to get the mandate to legislate and save our waters”, he clarified, while regretting that Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal did not exercise this option for the reasons best known to him.
The PCC president announced after the Congress forms government in Punjab, it will bring in Punjab specific ‘Below Poverty Line’ (BPL) scheme to cater to the local needs and also the socio-economic conditions here. He also ruled out the abolition of Mandi Board, saying it was an important corporation Punjab cannot do away with.
Fielding a variety of questions, Capt Amarinder reiterated his commitment to eradicate corruption from Punjab as he was committed under oath to do that. He said, he will not spare even the Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal, if he found him guilty.
He reminded people how during his previous regime he had caught the then Punjab Public Service Commission Chairman Ravi Sidhu red handed and he was still undergoing the sentence in the case. He warned the corrupt officials that a similar fate awaited them.
Later interacting with the reporters Capt Amarinder said that the Aam Aadmi Party state convener Sucha Singh Chhotepur had validated his charges that the party (AAP) was being run by the outsiders and local Punjabis had no say in it. He pointed out, the way tickets were announced, while ignoring the state chief, only showed the arrogance the AAP leaders from UP and Haryana were exhibiting towards the Punjabi leadership.
Replying to a question he said, the AAP euphoria had already fizzled out in Punjab. “The party as on now had already been trifurcated with two MPs on one side, another group led by Yoginder Yadav on the other side and the third led by Sanjay Singh and Durgesh Pathak in Punjab”, he pointed out, while adding, the party was likely to break up further.
Capt Amarinder also invited one of the party workers Preet Singh to his residence at Moti Bagh Palace, in Patiala. Preet Singh, while asking a question to Capt Amarinder also expressed his urge that he wanted to see the palace. Capt Amarinder told him, although he was mostly moving across Punjab and was not much there most of the time, whenever he will be back in Patiala he will ask district president Hardayal Kambhoj to arrange for the visit. The invitation was received with thumping applause in the hall.
Capt Amarinder was accompanied by senior party leaders Sadhu Singh Dharamsot and Hardayal Kambhoj.
video: ABP Sanjha