Sangrur/Barnala, September 29 – Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) President Sukhbir Singh Badal today castigated chief minister Capt Amarinder Singh for sprinkling salt on the wounds of Dalit students by posting an officer who had been used by the Congress government to procure a clean chit for Social Welfare minister Sadhu Singh Dharamsot in the Rs 64 crore SC Post Matric scholarship scam as Principal Secretary of the same department.
Talking to newsmen here, the SAD president said it was shameful that the whistleblower in the case – Additional chief secretary Kripa Shankar Saroj, who had indicted the SC Welfare minister, had been sidelined. “This proves that the Congress government is anti-Dalit. It would rather protect its corrupt minister than provide justice to Dalit students who are suffering because the money due to them was looted by the ministers and his gang”.
Giving further details, Mr. Sukhbir Badal said it was unfortunate that officers were being made to wash away the sins of corrupt ministers and an attempt was made to give a clean chit to Dharamsot by stating that Rs 39 crore, which had been embezzled, were paid to certain institutions, including those belonging to Congress leaders. He said even now Dalit students were suffering with Universities and private colleges refusing to hand over their degrees to them only because the Congress government had not paid the scholarship fee due to the institutions.
The SAD President also took on the chief minister for trying to befool the farmers by shedding crocodile tears when actually he had backstabbed them. He said the chief minister had been exposed thoroughly with it coming to light that he did not forward the resolution rejecting the three erstwhile central ordinances on agriculture which had been passed at a special session on August 28 to the centre. “This is a clear case of betrayal of the annadaata”, he said adding the chief minister should tell farmers why he got the resolution passed in a special session if he did not have any intention of forwarding it to parliament as well as the central government. Giving more details, he said the resolution first took twelve days to be sent from the Vidhan Sabha to the chief secretary’s office next door. “It has been lying on the chief secretary’s table for nearly twenty days now. Not only does this speak of the utter callousness and insensitivity of the Congress government towards farmers and their cause but also exposes a deep rooted conspiracy to thwart them from their goal of achieving justice in the case”, he added.
Asking the chief minister not to engage in hollow statements, Mr Badal said “you are talking about fighting for the cause of farmers but you are missing from action. I request farmer organizations to tell the chief minister to come out of hiding first. He should also act sincerely to realize the goal of the farmers. The manner in which he has rejected my suggestion to bring in an Act to make the entire State a Principal Market Yard to ensure the new Agricultural Acts are not implementable in Punjab indicates he is intent on sabotaging the struggle of the farming community.”
Mr Badal also announced that the SAD would stand steadfastly with farmer organizations. “I assure farmer organizations that whatever course of action is decided by them the SAD will support it wholeheartedly”. When questioned about farmer organizations meeting the chief minister today, the SAD President said they should ask the chief minister why his government had not forwarded the Vidhan Sabha resolution on the erstwhile central ordinances to the centre. EOM