Congress Member of Parliament from Sangrur, Vijay Inder Singla informed that he had written to Minister for Social Justice & Empowerment Kumari Selja in February 2013 seeking inclusion of Punjab under ‘Pradhan Mantra Adarsh Gram Yojana’ for integrated development of SC dominated villages for accelerating empowerment to the disadvantaged.UPA Government had responded positively to his intervention in this regard and agreed to include Punjab when the scheme coverage is expanded, said Singla and released correspondence between him and the UPA Government in this regard. Sangrur MP stated that Congress MPs/MLAs are working quietly in their own way to put the interests of Punjab forward at every forum.
Sangrur MP also informed that he has sought an Rs 5 crore pilot project from Social Empowerment Ministry to accelerate the ‘liquor free campaign’ adopted by Punjab Panchayats – a large majority of which belong to Sangrur and Barnala districts. This will help in incentivizing village Panchayats who have taken up cudgels for this pubic cause and act as a self-propelled awareness campaign.
Sangrur MP has already given Rs 2 lakh to every such village Panchayats for development grants from his MPLAD funds.
Alcohol and drug abuse have become a cause of concern in Punjab and Youth in large numbers are getting habituated to these habit forming substances.Singla said that Badal Government is not honoring the ‘liquor free resolutions’ passed by village Panchayats in its true spirit and most of these are being rejected on flimsy grounds to protect liquor mafia interests in Punjab. Vijay Inder Singla exhorted all village Panchayats in Punjab to pass ‘liquor free resolutions’ by 30 September this year (which is the deadline under the Punjab Panchayati Raj Act) to further this noble cause and asked the women folk to lead this movement. He stated that in case Punjab State Government fails to honor these resolutions by issuing necessary directions to Excise Department, the real face of the State Government will come before the public.Sangrur MP also released letters written to Punjab Chief Minister in this regard for which he has got no response till date including providing village Panchayats with ‘moral policing’ powers under the Excise Act.