Monthly Archives: JANUARY 2017


SAD’s manifesto:20 lakh jobs, sustainable agriculture, revolutionise rural infrastructure and mega industry complexes
24.01.17 - TEAM PT
SAD’s manifesto:20 lakh jobs, sustainable agriculture, revolutionise rural infrastructure and mega industry complexes



The Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) today unveiled its election manifesto for the 2017 assembly elections promising a slew of initiatives which will make agriculture a sustainable profession, revolutionise rural infrastructure, create 20 lakh jobs for youth, establish mega complexes for industry and provide succour to the poorest of the poor. 

The vision document, which was released by SAD president Sukhbir Singh Badal, follows the dictum - 'jo keha so kar vikhaya'. "We have delivered what we have promised earlier be it making the State power surplus, introducing unique welfare schemes like aata-daal and Shagun, to providing 100 per cent water and sewerage facilities in 165 towns across the State. "We are similarly committed to delivering on the promises made today". 
Giving details, Badal announced the SAD- BJP alliance was committed to waiving off farm debts of all small farmers. He said the alliance government would also give a State fertiliser input incentive of Rs 100 per quintal on both wheat and paddy as an additional support to farmers over and above the minimum support price (MSP). All small farmers will also be eligible for a Rs two lakh interest free agriculture crop loan. Besides this the government will provide tubewell to all farmers irrespective of the land holding and free and regular ten hour day time power supply for farm operations. Badal said farm labourers will also be compensated in case of damage to crops due to natural calamities.

Stating that the next five years would be known as the period when rural infrastructure was revolutionised in the State, Badal said "we have provided clean drinking water and sewerage facilities in 165 towns. Now we will do the same in all 12,000 villages besides making cemented streets and putting up solar lights". He said besides this a one stop shop which will dispense aata daal, medical clinic and Sewa kendra will be opened in villages. All link roads will be made 18 feet wide. 

The SAD president said the Akali-BJP alliance was also committed to skilling 10 lakh youth in 25,000 skill centres with one skill centre catering to five villages. Those doing the skill courses will be eligible for Rs 10 lakh interest free loan. The alliance government will also facilitate 50,000 youth to acquire taxis without down payment and soft loans. We will give government employment and also create jobs in tourism and industrial sectors to reach the 20 lakh job promise, he said.  

Outlining his vision for the industry, Sukhbir said now was the time to think big. "We have laid down all needed infrastructure. All major towns and cities will be connected with four and six lane highways. We need mega industry centres. Accordingly we have planned to make the Malwa region a textile hub. An industrial park will be created over 2,500 acres in Rajpura. Trade fair centres will come up in Mohali, Ludhiana and Amritsar. Similarly world class IT hubs will be created in Mohali and Amritsar. A manufacturing hub will be created in Ludhiana by way of the Cycle Valley. A pharmaceutical hub will be created in Rajpura and medicity at Mullanpur.  

Badal also assured that traders having a turnover of Rs two crore per annum would not have to maintain books and can do self certification and pay lump tax. Currently this facility is available for traders with a turnover of Rs one crore. 

Badal said ameliorating the lot of the weaker sections was a cornerstone of SAD-BJP philosophy. "The welfare of weaker sections is closest to our hearts. We have accordingly decided that all kutcha houses will be made pucca and the houseless would be given jobs. He said in another important decision it was decided that economically backward among general category citizens will also be eligible for all social welfare schemes meant for SC/ BC categories. He said it had been decided to increase all welfare pensions from the present Rs 500 per month to Rs 2,000 per month. Shagun scheme will be raised from Rs 15,000 to Rs 51,000. A new initiative to give five kg sugar @ Rs ten per kg and two kg ghee @ Rs 25 per kg would also be implemented. 
 
Free gas connections will also be given to all blue card holders even as medical treatment to blue card holders, small farmers, petty traders and construction workers would be raised to Rs one lakh per annum. 

Highlighting the initiatives which would be taken for womenfolk, Badal said all matric pass women would be eligible to get sewing machines. 

Stating that controlling crime and continuing the fight against drugs was a top priority for the akali- BJP alliance, Badal said CCTV cameras would be installed on all entry and exit points of villages and cities to check crime. He said a special border area force would be constituted to form a second line of defence and check infiltration. Badal said rehabilitation centres would be upgraded and new policy of incentivisation to encourage addicts to leave drugs would be initiated. 

Badal said the SAD- BJP government had done a lot to improve infrastructure as well as beautify the precincts around the Darbar Sahab. He said in the next five years the entire walled city would be given a world class heritage look. He said other heritage and religious towns would also be taken up for a heritage makeover. 

Sukhbir Badal also announced that the government would take steps to regularise all unauthorised colonies at a nominal price. He said there would not be any tax on CSD to benefit ex servicemen. 

He said big infrastructure projects which would be taken up in the next five years would include super expressway linking Jalandhar and Ajmer Sharif and new express alignment between Amritsar and Delhi. 

Badal also made it clear that presently Punjab did not have land or water for construction of the SYL canal. "We have returned the land on which the canal stood back to the farmers from whom it was acquired. The SYL canal cannot be constructed under any circumstances now. We are also committed to continue a peaceful democratic struggle to secure inclusion of Chandigarh and other Punjabi speaking areas in Haryana back into Punjab. We will also work devotedly to ensure the criminals who massacred innocent Sikhs are brought to book and the victims are fully rehabilitated. We also stand for a genuine federal structure, protection of minorities and peace and communal harmony". 

The SAD president said above all we seek a vote on performance - both on development of Punjab as well as the people friendly policies, programmes and decisions of the SAD- BJP government.




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Dhindsa asks Sidhu to apologise for imitating Guru Gobind Singh ji
23.01.17 - TEAM PT
Dhindsa asks Sidhu to apologise for imitating Guru Gobind Singh ji



The Shiromani Akali Dal today said comedian politico Navjot Sidhu had hurt the religious sentiments of Sikhs worldwide by imitating Guru Gobind Singh ji and asked him to apologise for this act immediately. 

In a statement here, party Secretary General Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa said Sidhu had displayed the height of arrogance by abrogating the nature of Guru ji. He said what was even more hurtful for the Sikh community was that Sidhu was not even remorseful about his actions. "Sikhs always atone sinners for their mistakes and the community is all forgiving. But in case of Sidhu it seems he thinks he is above the community and even its institutions". 

Dhindsa said Sikhs worldwide were watching Sidhu's actions. "He has distorted the scriptures earlier also. If he does not apologise for his actions it will be presumed that he has no respect for Sikhism. It will also be presumed that Sidhu is deliberately lowering the prestige of Sikhs and its Gurus after joining the Congress party as part of a well planned strategy. Sikhs will never forgive him for these actions", he added. 

The Akali leader said another instance of a Congress leader disrespecting Guru Gobind Singh ji by using the sobriquet of Mard Agamra used for Guru ji for Amarinder Singh had also come to light. He said this was most condemnable. He said such actions proved that the Congress was deliberately inciting sentiments amongst the Sikh community. He asked the concerned leader as well as the State Congress to apologise for these actions immediately.




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Why you never went to jail on SYL issue: Sukhbir to Amarinder
23.01.17 - TEAM PT
Why you never went to jail on SYL issue: Sukhbir to Amarinder



Sukhbir Badal today told Punjab Congress president Capt Amarinder Singh to put his money where his mouth is and tell Punjabis why he had never gone to jail on the SYL canal issue. 
 
"You seem to have joined the despicable Arvind Kejriwal team in lying and deceiving Punjabis. You also seem to be suffering from amnesia. You forgot to tell Punjabis that it was you who invited Indira Gandhi to Kapoori to start digging of the SYL canal. You also forgot to tell them that it was Sardar Badal who courted arrest on the SYL issue. You have not courted arrest on any people issue even once. Whom are you trying to fool?"
 
Stating that Amarinder was trying to cover up his tracks by making misleading statements on the SYL issue, Sukhbir said "you should however have some shame for covering up the evil deeds of Indira Gandhi. It is obvious you are doing this solely to please her grandson Rahul Gandhi and be anointed the party's chief ministerial candidate". 
 
Speaking about Amarinder's lies, Jr. Badal said "we have already done what you are promising to do. It is obvious you don't read the newspapers as you rarely stay in Punjab. You are promising to stop construction of the SYL canal when the SAD-BJP has already done that. We have even transferred the land on which the canal stands back to the farmers. What more can you do?"  
 
The SAD president said Amarinder could not sidestep his responsibility of backstabbing his constituents as well as the people of Punjab. "You were MP of Patiala when Indira Gandhi came to Kapoori village in your constituency to start work on the SYL. Instead of protesting against this or even sitting at home, you took out advertisements welcoming the move and even stood beside her when she initiated the digging of the canal". 
 
Asking Amarinder not to try to fool the people, he said his role in construction of the canal as well as the role of his party was well documented. "Your party gave fifty percent of Punjab's water to Rajasthan. Following reorganisation of the State another fifty per cent was earmarked for Haryana. Indira Gandhi forced then Congress chief minister Darbara Singh to agree to construction of the canal. If anyone is complicit in the conspiracy to turn Punjab into a desert it is you and your party. Instead of atoning for your sins against Punjabis, you are trying to befool them with lies and deceit". 
 
Asserting that this would indeed be Amarinder's last election, Sukhbir said "the shelf life of your lies is over. People realise you have no commitment for Punjab or Punjabis. You have in fact sold the interests of Punjab to Rajasthan and Haryana. Punjabis will never forgive you for this. They will never trust you again".




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Employees subjected to harassment, victimization under Badal, Kejriwal govts: Amarinder
23.01.17 - TEAM PT
Employees subjected to harassment, victimization under Badal, Kejriwal govts: Amarinder



Lashing out at the Badal government in Punjab and the Kejriwal government in Delhi for the step-motherly treatment being meted out to government and other employees in their respective states, Captain Amarinder Singh on Monday promised all possible steps to ensure redressal of the long-pending demands of the employees in Punjab on priority basis after coming to power.

Amarinder appealed to the Punjab employees to join hands with his party to restore the state to its lost glory, assuring them that the next Congress government in the state would address their problems without delay post the Assembly elections, with regularization of contractual employees on top of the party agenda.

Capt. Amarinder said while the Badal-led SAD-BJP government in Punjab had completely ignored the interests of government, especially contractual employees, Arvind Kejriwal’s government in Delhi had pushed employees to a state of despair. Employees in both the states had been victimized and subjected to severe harassment by the governments led by Parkash Singh Badal and Arvind Kejriwal, respectively, he added.

The Congress, he said, was committed to addressing the problems of the government employees. Captain promised regularization of all contractual employees in Punjab once his government takes over the reins of powers in the state. Pointing to the plight of teachers in Punjab, he assured early redressal of their problems and said their long-pending demands would be addressed on priority by the next Congress government.

The PPCC president also referred to the pathetic conditions in which policemen were working and said sweeping police reforms, as promised in the party manifesto, would be brought in once the government is formed. Fixed duty hours with regular offs, free medical insurance, time-bound promotion and shifting from VVIP duty to law and order were some of the reforms planned by the party, he said.

Referring to the plight of government employees in Delhi, Captain Amarinder said the AAP government was totally oblivious to the problems of the government and other employees, who continued to face problems of non-payment of salary and other dues, etc.

MCD workers in Delhi had been forced to strike work as a result of non-payment of their salary, he pointed out, adding that even the teaching staff of private schools had been reduced to a pitiable state with the Delhi legislative assembly amending the law to make it easier for such schools to cut the salaries of teachers. Given the state of employees in Delhi, Kejriwal and his party could not be trusted with the interests of employees in Punjab, said Amarinder, adding that it was in the interest of the employees to ensure that the Congress is elected with a clear majority.

The Congress manifesto has listed out several measures to improve the lot of employees in Punjab. The Congress government will ensure expeditious payment of the pending DA and other dues of employees, while also expediting finalization and implementation of the report of the 6th Punjab Pay Commission after hearing all representative employees’ associations/organizations.

Ensuring payment of full salary on recruitment to the government service as per rules, regularization of all adhoc and contractual employees recruited through transparent systems and procedures, and ensuring regular annual recruitment of critical core employees against the sanctioned posts are other promises of the Congress for Punjab employees.




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Will usher `nawan sawera’ in state; teach a lesson to Badals: Capt. Amarinder
23.01.17 - TEAM PT
Will usher `nawan sawera’ in state; teach a lesson to Badals: Capt. Amarinder



Lambasting the Badals for plunging Punjab into a state of total devastation and destruction, Punjab Congress president Captain Amarinder Singh on Monday asserted that this was no time to experiment with a new political dispensation as the state needed urgent intervention by an experienced leadership to usher in a`nawan sawera’ (new dawn) in the state.
 
Addressing rallies in Dharamkot and Moga, Amarinder took on the Badals, and their associates Bikram Singh Majithia and Tota Singh, as well as Arvind Kejriwal and his Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), for their nefarious designs against Punjab and its people. He declared that only the Congress could bring the state back on the track of progress, and rescue the people from the misery and wretchedness in which they had been living for the past 10 years.
 
The state had been left reeling under a multi-crore debt and a huge budget deficit, and needed experienced leaders to rescue it from the crisis into which it had been thrown by the Badals, said Amarinder.
 
He urged the people to seriously think of whether they wanted an experienced and stable government, which only the Congress could provide, or they wanted an anarchist party like AAP or looters like the SAD-BJP combine. Captain exhorted the people to take a decision in the interest of their future, and that of their children.
 
While the Chhota Badal was busy making hotels and Lambu Majithia was busy selling chitta, senior Badal was busy wasting time and money in `sangat darshans’, said Captain Amarinder On the other hand, Kejriwal and his party were only interested in looting Punjab and promoting their personal interests, the PPCC president added.
 
As a Haryanvi, Kejriwal will never stand up for the interests of Punjab, said Amarinder, pointing out that the AAP leader had refused to take up his challenge of a debate and to contest these polls to show that he was really concerned about the state. With not a single Punjabi in the party, and with allegations of sale of tickets and molestation of women, AAP had absolutely no leg to stand on and could not be trusted to ensure Punjab’s development, the PPCC chief added.
 
He accused Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal of trying to spread communal disharmony and polarization through incidents of sacrilege and desecration, and vowed to throw him behind bars after having all such cases reinvestigated once elected to power. "Those who try to divide people using religion do not deserve any mercy,” Captain Amarinder declared.
 
Vowing to expose SAD’s Sukhbir Badal and Bikram Singh Majithia for their patronage of the drugs and other mafias, Captain Amarinder declared he would go to Majitha and Jalalabad to show their true colours to the people.
 
"I also decided to contest Lambi for the same reason – to expose Badal and give him a good thrashing for life so that nobody else ever dares to ruin Punjab the way he has done in the past one decade,” said Captain Amarinder, amid rousing applause from the crowds.
 
Later in Moga, Captain Amarinder lashed out at the Akali candidate from the constituency and Tota Singh’s son Barjinder Singh Makhan Brar, allegedly involved in a sex scandal, saying people like this father-son duo were a disgrace on politics.




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