Promising to make Malerkotla a separate district on coming to power, Punjab Congress president Captain Amarinder Singh on Sunday declared his commitment to the uplift of the minorities in Punjab by giving the same benefits as are being provided to the Dalits, including houses for the homeless Christians and Muslims.While announcing his intention to nominate the Congress candidate Razia Sultan, an ex-MLA, as a minister in his cabinet, the PPCC president and chief ministerial nominee of the party said he was committed to ensuring communal harmony in the state and would punish all those, including Badal, found guilty of involvement in any of the sacrilege incidents that have vitiated Punjab’s atmosphere.Asserting his commitment to protecting the minorities in Punjab, Captain Amarinder said he would make sure that their future is secured and would implement every promise made to the minorities in the manifesto, including due representation to them in all state Boards and Corporations. The manifesto also promises the establishment of an Urdu Academy and a Medical College in Malerkotla.
Addressing a public rally here, Captain Amarinder said poor Christian and Muslim families would be given the same benefits by his government as are provided to their SC counterparts, such as Shagun under the Ashirward scheme, free electricity, pensions, loan waiver and scholarships etc. Houseless/landless Muslims and Christians with an annual income less than Rs. 5 lakh would be given five Marla plots or houses, on the lines of similar scheme for Dalits and SC poor, he added.Captain Amarinder expressed his gratitude to the Sehajdhari Sikhs, who extended their support to the Congress on the occasion. He dubbed the debarment of the Sehajdhari Sikhs from voting in the SGPC elections, under the Sikh Gurdwaras (Amendment) Bill, 2016, passed by the Lok Sabha, as a conspiracy of the Badals to seize complete control of the religious body. The PPCC president vowed to free the SGPC from the Badal fetters to prevent the misuse of religion for political gains.The Punjab Congress chief assured the people that his government, after the elections, would spare no effort in bringing to book all those guilty of ruining the state with their corrupt policies and actions. He reiterated his promise of jobs for all unemployed youth, with loan waiver for farmers and new policy for industrial revival, immediately after coming to power.Captain Amarinder once again underscored his commitment to freeing Punjab’s youth from the manacles of the drug mafia, patronized by the Akalis, within four weeks of coming to power.Razia, on her part, said only the Congress, under the chief ministership of Captain Amarinder, could save Punjab and secure its future.