Punjab’s budget session from Monday, fireworks likely

Opposition to corner govt over ‘failure’ to honour its poll promises despite completing four years of its term

Punjab’s budget session from Monday, fireworks likely

The Punjab Assembly building. File photo

Chandigarh, February 28

The Budget Session of the Punjab Assembly, starting from Monday, is likely to witness fireworks, with the opposition deciding to corner the Amarinder Singh-led government over its “failure” to honour its poll promises despite completing four years of its term.

The members of the House will assemble on Monday for the Punjab governor’s address and obituary references. The session will be held from March 1 to 10.

The state budget for 2021-22 is proposed to be presented on March 5.

Besides the state budget estimates for the next fiscal, the session will also see the presentation of the report of the Comptroller and Auditor General of India for the year 2018-19 (civil, commercial) and financial accounts of government of Punjab for the year 2019-20, as well as appropriation accounts for the year 2019-20.

With the Punjab assembly polls due early next year, it will be the last budget of the Amarinder Singh-led government which came to power in 2017.

The SAD and the AAP will question the state government for allegedly “failing” to fulfil its poll promises made before the 2017 assembly elections.

Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) leader Bikram Singh Majithia on Sunday said his party will “force” the Congress-led government to explain why it had “betrayed” all sections of the society, in its last budget session.

Majithia said be it farmers, farm labourers, youth, scheduled and backward castes, government employees or trade and industry, each and every section of the society had been “befooled” by Chief Minister Amarinder Singh.

“We will ask the chief minister to explain why he betrayed the ‘annadaata’ by promising to waive loans taken from nationalised and private banks as well as cooperative societies and arhtiyas when he did not have any intention of fulfilling this promise,” he further said.

Similarly, the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) will be questioning the state government for not being able to “honour” its poll promises made in 2017.

AAP MLA and Leader of Opposition (LoP) in the Punjab Assembly Harpal Singh Cheema said, “It has been four years since then and we have reached the final budget session and none of those promises have yet been fulfilled.

AAP’s Punjab unit chief Bhagwant Mann accused the Congress-led government of “throwing all its promises into a dustbin”.

“No promise has been fulfilled yet, be it jobs to every household, farm debt waiver, Rs 2,500 per month pension etc,” said Mann.

Sangrur MP alleged while “mafia raj” was rampant in the state, the public was “completely neglected” by this government. “The ruling Congress threw all its promises made with the public into a dustbin,” he said.

Meanwhile, the ruling Congress will ‘gherao’ Punjab Raj Bhavan on Monday in protest against “rising” fuel and cooking gas price.

The SAD has also planned to ‘gherao’ Punjab Assembly on Monday after party chief Sukhbir Singh Badal addresses Akali workers at Sector 25 here.

“We will march towards the Vidhan Sabha in a peaceful manner,” said SAD leader Daljit Singh Cheema while alleging that the Congress party’s poll promises had turned out to be “fraud”.

BJP leader Tarun Chugh said they will “expose” the Congress-led dispensation for “not keeping” its promises like farm debt waiver.

“The ruling party always tried to divert attention from its failures in four years,” said Chugh. PTI

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