Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) has warned the SAD-BJP government against turning Punjab into a gambling den by allowing the four digit lottery to operate in Punjab and to earn additional revenue from sale of lottery tickets.AAP Media Campaign in charge Bhagwant Mann said that AAP would not tolerate any such misadventure by SAD-BJP government that would ruin the future of youth. He said that SAD-BJP had already doomed the young generation by pushing them into drugs. He said that youth was facing an uncertain future due to unemployment and luring them towards gambling would be bigger mischief with them.Mann said that SAD-BJP Government has reduced the tax on four digit lottery and demanded Rs.15 lakh advance security payment from lottery operators. He said that state government has chosen to promote gambling to clear its overdraft amounting to more than Rs. 1850 crore. He said that it was more shameful that Badal government wants to clear arrears of salaries and DA of its employees from money earned from sale of lotteries.Mann said that Punjab and Haryana High Court has also observed that Punjab was wasting funds on publicity and it has no money for the staff. He said that Punjab had not paid Rs.319 crore arrears of pensioners.
Mann said that the Punjab Government is already running its lotteries and many unauthorized lotteries are also operating from Punjab under the political patronage. He said earlier one digit that lotteries have ruined many families and the banned ‘Satta’ is still being run with impunity. He said that lottery should not be a source of earning revenue since it is major social evil. He said that youth would be easily attracted towards gambling and it makes a deadly combination with drugs.Mann said that AAP would also ban the illegal lottery and other gambling products which leaves bad impact on the society. He sought to immediately ban four digit and other unauthorized lotteries of other states like Manipur operating in Punjab.Mann said that SAD-BJP had pushed Punjab into a debt trap and at present Punjab was under debt of over Rs.1.50 lakh crores and government is not able to pay the salaries of staff, money of Shagun scheme, old age pensions and it has no funds for its ‘Atta-Dal’ scheme for people below poverty line. He said that SAD-BJP government was solely responsible for present state of affairs.He said that the huge money from illegal sand mining and illegal public transport operations was being siphoned off by ruling elite which could otherwise fill the government coffers. He said that AAP government would streamline all illegal means of siphoning money and book the culprits behind bars.