Reiterating that the Congress government in the state will continue to provide subsidized aata-daal to poor and free power to agricultural sector, Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee President Capt Amarinder Singh today said that it will provide further subsidies under the National Food Security Act which has already been approved by the Union Cabinet and will soon become a law.Addressing a well attended public meeting here today, Capt Amarinder said, the Chief Minister Mr Parkash Singh Badal and the Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Badal were spreading lies and rumours by saying that the Congress will stop free power and aata-daal scheme. He said, it was their sheer frustration to create fear among the people as they had realized that nothing was going to stop the Congress form coming to power and hence they were using these mean tactics and spreading lies.Justifying the food subsidy, he said, Mr Badal was not paying from his own pocket for the aata-daal scheme as it was the government of India policy. He said, it was the responsibility of all the governments and the Akalis had not done anything special. Elaborating further, he said, once the Food Security Act becomes a law, which it will become very soon, the food subsidy will be increased further and deserving people will get the aata-daal on lower prices than claimed to be provided by the Akali government.On the issue of free power to agriculture sector, he reminded both the senior as well as junior Badal that it was Congress which had started free power to farmers and it will continue to do that. “You made a mockery of it as you never provided them (the farmers) adequate power”, he told the father-son duo while pointing out as how farmers were left in lurch as they could not get even two hour power supply against the daily and regular eight hour supply during the Congress government.
Making a fervent appeal to people to vote for Congress, he told them, they should themselves compare the two regimes one of the Akalis between 2007 and 2012 and the other of the Congress between 2002 and 2007. “You have everything before yourself and you decide”, he told them.Questioning the claims of development by the Akalis he asked them to spell out one single achievement. “Yes their main achievement is to have added seven lakh more families to the already thirteen lakh existing families living below the poverty line”, he pointed out, while adding, development does not mean that there are more poor people which the Akalis have done.Capt Amarinder said, while Punjab was getting poorer day by day, the Badals were getting richer after grabbing the sand and gravel mining, the liquor business, the transport business, the cable operations and everything they thought will earn them money. “This is the most corrupt and incompetent government in the history of Punjab”, he said.Speaking on the occasion, the Union Minister for Information and Broadcasting Ms Ambika Soni asked the people to judge for themselves as what the Akalis had done and what Congress had done before that. She pointed out, during the Congress regime there was an investment friendly atmosphere prevailing everywhere.
But now, people are afraid of investing in Punjab due to the situation created by the Akali-BJP government.She said, the Akalis had also grabbed the media and established their exclusive monopoly over it which was quite undemocratic. Ms Soni asked people not to get misled again and not to repeat the same mistake they had committed in 2007.Asserting that only Congress could provide a stable, firm and progressive government she quoted the examples of the states like Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh and Haryana where people have continuously reposed their faith in the Congress. She hoped that in the same manner they will repose their faith in Congress in Punjab as well and see the results for themselves.Among others who spoke on the occasion included the local MP Ravneet Singh Bittu, the Congress candidate from Kharar Jagmohan Singh Kang, his supporters Rajbir Singh Padiala, Inderjeet Singh Randhawa, Balbir Sidhu, Charanjit Singh Channi and others.