Muktsar, January 14
Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) chief Sukhbir Singh Badal slammed the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government in Punjab on Saturday over the issue of law and order and said the state's future is safe only in the hands of his party.
Badal also appealed to people to strengthen the SAD as it is the rightful heir to Punjab's rich cultural heritage, adding that his party would continue to strive to remain true to its core principle of "sarbat da bhala" (welfare of all), according to a statement.
Addressing a gathering at the Maghi Mela here, Badal said, "The future of Punjab is safe only in the hands of the party that had ushered in record development, besides ensuring peace and communal harmony." "In stark contrast, you are witnessing a government that has presided over the collapse of law and order as well as the potential financial ruin of the state," he was quoted as saying in the statement issued by the SAD.
Badal said Punjabis have already seen how the previous Congress government in the state had made "false" promises to them.
Punjabis could neither hope much from the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), which is "instigating" them to fight against each other, he alleged.
Calling upon Punjabis to think before taking decisions, Badal said they were swayed by the "ek mauka" (one chance) slogan earlier.
He said the last eight months of the AAP government have shown that the slogan was "hollow".
"Never before have Punjabis suffered so much. Snatching, robberies and extortions are affecting the common man. Industry is migrating out of the state. All development work has stopped. Even the promises made to people, including Rs 1,000 per month to women and jobs to youngsters, have not been fulfilled," Badal said.
He also targeted the Congress over the 1984 anti-Sikh riots and asked people to think twice before welcoming Rahul Gandhi in their midst, apparently referring to the opposition party's Bharat Jodo Yatra.
Asserting that Punjab had witnessed unprecedented development during the SAD tenure, Badal said, "We had developed the state systematically. We had first developed the irrigation network, coupled with mandis (wholesale markets), for a smooth procurement of foodgrains." He said the SAD was also responsible for making Punjab a power-surplus state, besides building world-class roads and airports.
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