For Congress veteran, stock market volatility is guide to poll outcome : The Tribune India

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For Congress veteran, stock market volatility is guide to poll outcome

For Congress veteran, stock market volatility is guide to poll outcome

Congress candidate Sukhjinder Singh Randhawa addresses a public meeting in Amritsar on Monday.



Tribune News Service

Ravi Dhaliwal

Gurdaspur, May 27

Sukhjinder Singh Randhawa’s residence, tucked away in a narrow street in his native village of Dharowali, remains a hub of activity ever since the AICC announced his candidature.

Commandos, carrying sophisticated automatic weapons, are visible everywhere. Nobody is frisked lest he should get annoyed, but the fact is that nobody can escape the watchful eyes of these security personnel.

His wife Jatinder Kaur is much busier than her MLA husband. She is quick to emphasise that she is not a politician. Nevertheless, she acts, thinks, talks and lives like one. Reason enough why Sukhjinder Randhawa has given her absolute control of his assembly seat of Dera Baba Nanak.

She signals to the crowd standing outside that “Sahib is ready and can come out anytime to meet them.” Randhawa comes out, listens to their grievances and hops in his car. He is on his way to meet Dr Kamaljit Singh whose son Prabhdeep Singh has made it big in construction business in Australia. The doctor’s one acre plush house is located on the outskirts of the village. “This is one of the success stories of Dharowali,” says Randhawa.

Minutes later, he is on his way to Gurdaspur, 35 kilometres away. In the car, he is busy checking his phone. Actually, he is checking the stock market. Not because he has invested in shares or mutual funds but because the “Sensex gives a fair idea whether the BJP government will get a third term or not.”

“Just see how the volatility index of the stock exchange is on the rise. This means the markets have become nervous. The industry can sense that Modi is no longer coming to power,” quips Randhawa as his car passes the T-point, the starting point of the four-lane road that leads to the Kartarpur corridor, 8 km away.

“The construction of the corridor got mired in controversy when the mining mafia suddenly increased the prices of sand and gravel. Chief Minister Capt Amarinder Singh asked me to intervene. I called the contractor and told him to re-start work within two hours or be ready to face an FIR. Things fell in place and the corridor was built on schedule,” he said.

Minutes later, his car again screeches to a halt, this time at Kalanaur. He points to nearly 1,600 acres of panchayat land lying vacant. “In 2018, when I was the Co-operation Minister, I set up a Sugarcane Research Institute on the lines of the Vasantdada Sugar Institute in Pune, regarded as Asia’s best sugarcane research institute. Everything was going well till the AAP government assumed power. The new government has stopped work. This is a classic example of how petty politicking hampers development projects,” he said.

He is worried about how Pakistan is sending in drones carrying payloads or heroin in border villages. “Earlier, heroin came in 5 kg packets. Now it is coming in packets weighing 10 to 15 kg. My youngsters are being ruined. Batala’s once famed industrial units are facing closure because the Central Government is not giving them rebates like it gives to J&K and HP. Heroin and unemployment are the two biggest problems this constituency is facing. This will be my priority area once I reach parliament,” he says.

Before he winds up for the day, says Randhawa, “My constituency badly needs a state-of-the-art medical college and hospital on the lines of AIIMS. We also need a sports university and a big ticket fruit-cum-agro-based industrial unit in Pathankot.”

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#Congress #Gurdaspur #Sukhjinder Singh Randhawa


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