Punjab chief minister Parkash Singh Badal on Thursday congratulated Prime Minister Narendra Modi for the Indian Army’s surgical strikes on terror camps across the Line of Control (LoC), inside Pakistan-Ocupied Kashmir (POK), hailing it as an "apt, timely and effective operation”.
Chief Minister Badal also put the entire government and political machinery in an emergency mode following reports of developments on the Indo-Pak border.
While monitoring the current situation during an emergency meeting convened at his official residence, Badal directed the Chief Secretary and DGP, who were present in the meeting, to ask the concerned Deputy Commissioners (DCs) and Senior Superintendents of Police (SSPs) to oversee the entire evacuation process in the border districts of Ferozepur, Fazilka, Amritsar, Taran Tarn, Gurdaspur and Pathankot. The Chief Minister directed the DCs to identify suitable location for setting up camps and ensure that none of any residents being evacuated was put to any sort of inconvenience or hardships.
At a press conference later, Badal said that the people of Punjab are "ready to face the situation in this crisis”.
"Punjab, which is rightly called the sword arm of India, has suffered immensely because of the inhuman and ghastly acts of terrorism by these elements. Peace and communal harmony in the state has been one of the prime targets of these elements as was evident in the attacks on Dinanagar and Pathankot,” the CM also stated in a written statement.
Badal stated that the Centre and Punjab were totally aware of the challenge posed to life and property of those residing along the border in view of the current situation.
Rajnath Singh also spoke to CM over telephone this morning to request him to immediately start the process of evacuation of the people residing in the villages falling within ten kilometres of the International border in view of the escalating situation.
Schools and colleges have been earmarked as camps for the evacuated population and medical teams were also alerted to reach the camps, while many families opted to move to their relatives or friends'.
Nearly 1,000 villages in six districts of the state are being evacuated partially or fully.
Following the home ministry’s directions Punjab CM Badal directed all educational institutions in the border districts to be closed till further orders and cancelled all leaves for emergency services like police, health and district administration.
Punjab shares about 550 km border with pakistan.