By Anil Dogra- PHAGWARA (KAPURTHALA): Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal today said that in order to safeguard the interest of the common man, the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) would support the call of Bharat bandh given by the major opposition parties to protest against the recent decision of Congress led UPA government to allow Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in retail sector.
Talking to the media persons after presiding over a function of the Shri Ram Navmi Utsav Committee here today, the Chief Minister categorically said that the decision of FDI in retail sector would ruin the small shopkeepers of the country which was not in the interest of the country and could not be tolerated at any cost. He said that as a leading political party of the country the SAD could not be just a mute spectator of this anti people decision of the Union government, due to which they would extend whole hearted support to the call of Bharat bandh.
“It is unfortunate that the Congress led UPA government which had assumed power on the name of the common man (Aam Aadmi) was now bent on ruining them by taking such arbitrary decisions” added Badal.
Pointing out towards the differences’ amongst the constituents of the UPA government on the issues like that of the FDI in retail sector and the hike in price of diesel, the Chief Minister said that due to wrong policies of UPA a situation of ‘political emergency’ was prevailing in the country which was leading towards complete chaos in the system.
He said that it was shameful thing that owing to its anti people policies the UPA government has lost the support of its key allies resulting in instability in the country. Badal reiterated that the recent hike in the price of diesel by the UPA government would break the backbone of the common man by putting extra burden on them and further accelerating the already high inflationary prices.
Replying to another query the Chief Minister said that the state government was forced to levy fresh taxes on the people as it was mandatory for getting the funds for development from the Centre under its various schemes like Jawahar Lal Nehru National Urban Renewal Mission (JNNURM). He said that the state government was firmly committed for sustaining the tempo of overall development and progress in the state due to which the decision of imposing taxes was the need of the hour.
When asked to comment on the resignation submitted by Cabinet Minister Mr Gulzar Singh Ranike, the Chief Minister said that the Minister has resigned on moral grounds adding that the law would take its own course on the issue. Badal said that owing to their commitment of providing clean and transparent administration to the people he had already asked the Vigilance Bureau to probe the matter.
Earlier speaking at the function the Chief Minister exhorted the political leadership of the sink their differences and join hands for weaning away the social maladies like poverty, illiteracy and unemployment being faced by the country. Advocating the constitution of national and state level forums in the country to evolve strategy for the development, Mr Badal said that rising above their parochial considerations the political leadership should duly use such forums and contribute towards ensuring peace, amity and communal harmony in the country thereby paving way for its all round development.
Lauding the efforts made by Shri Ram Navmi Utsav Committee under the dynamic leadership of the Chief Editor of Hind Samachar Group Mr Vijay Chopra to promote secularism and communal harmony in the state, the Chief Minister said that such efforts would go a long way in ensuring the all round development of the state.
The Chief Minister reiterated that the biggest achievement of their government has been that it has ensured communal harmony and peace in the state despite of the fact that several other parts of the country were facing this severe problem. However he said that with the active co-operation of people the state government has been able to keep this border state away from the danger of communalism.
On the occasion the Chief Minister also announced a grant of Rs 10 lakh for the committee and lauded the role being played by the committee in religious and social fields besides in imparting quality education and providing world class health facilities to the people.
Prominent amongst those present on the occasion included Chief Editor of Hind Samachar Group Vijay Chopra, Cabinet Minister Sarwan Singh Phillaur, Chief Parliamentary Secretaries KD Bhandari and Som Parkash, Former Minister Master Mohan Lal, Deputy Commissioner Jalandhar Priyank Bharti and Deputy Commissioner Kapurthala Mrs Alaknanda Dayal.
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