Punjab session starts on stormy note, Opposition raises farmers’ issues : The Tribune India

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Punjab session starts on stormy note, Opposition raises farmers’ issues

Punjab session starts on stormy note, Opposition raises farmers’ issues


Tribune News Service

Sanjeev Singh Bariana

Chandigarh, March 1

Acrimonious scenes were witnessed during Punjab Governor Banwarilal Purohit’s address to the state Assembly on the opening day of the Budget session on Friday. His address was disrupted by the Opposition, mainly Congress, which raised the issues of the protesting farmers and resorted to sloganeering.

Refusing to comply with the Opposition’s demand to pay homage to Shubhkaran Singh (21), who died due to the alleged Haryana Police action against farmers at the Khanauri border recently, the Governor read only the first and last paragraphs of his address during his 11-minute speech. He said the remaining be treated as read.

As soon as the Governor began his speech, Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee president Amarinder Singh Raja Warring interrupted him. Leader of Opposition Partap Singh Bajwa too joined him along with other party leaders in the Well of the House. They insisted that the Governor speak on the farmers’ issue. Later, Speaker Kultar Singh Sandhwan walked across to the Governor following which he concluded his address.

Purohit’s address read that the Anti-Gangster Task Force had busted 312 modules, recovered 963 weapons and 208 vehicles used in criminal activities. Besides, the Punjab Police arrested 25,385 drug smugglers since March 16, 2022, and recovered 1,860 kg heroin from across the state.

Underling the state’s efforts to promote direct seeding of rice, Purohit said at least 19,097 farmers used the method on 1,70,000 acres during the financial year 2023-2024.

At least 1.07 crore people visited the 664 operational Aam Aadmi Clinics, he said, adding that pre-primary enrolment had increased by at least 17 per cent during the term of the current government. The government had also implemented a centralised admission portal for higher education benefiting 1.5 lakh students during the session 2023-2024.

Governor Purohit said the utilisation of canal water had increased by more than 38 per cent during its peak demand period. As many as 45 canals of about 400 km length that were lying dysfunctional have been put to regular use.

The government has successfully launched the ‘Bhagwant Mann Sarkar Tuhade Dwar’ scheme to provide services on door-step of citizens. More than 15,000 citizens have availed benefits of the 43 services offered.

The government received 4,242 investment proposals worth approximately Rs 65,993 crore, which would offer employment to about 3,20,882 unemployed. The government has provided at least 40,437 jobs in 40 different departments.

Punjab became the fifth state in the country to achieve 100 per cent coverage in providing functional household tap connection in the rural areas. The government has increased monthly grant for Operation Blue Star-affected ‘Dharmi Faujis’ from Rs 10,000 to Rs 12,000 and doubled the ex gratia to the defence/paramilitary personnel who are disabled during duty.

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