Chandigarh, June 19
Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh on Monday lashed out at the opposition for raising many unfounded and unsubstantiated issues, while reiterating his government’s commitment to clean up the mess left behind by the previous government in the state.
Addressing the Budget Session of the Vidhan Sabha to conclude the discussion on the Governor’s address , the Chief Minister said his government had inherited a state that is marked by empty coffers, poor law and order situation, acute farmers’ distress, crippled industry and business and complete lawlessness and mis-governance.
The opposition, he said, was apparently restless because the truth has not yet fully unfolded.
The ruling party never anticipated that the malaise and mess inherited by it would be so deep and widespread that the beginning of the process to provide relief to common man would be such a nightmare, said Captain Amarinder. The government was, however, committed to clean up the mess and restore order not only in public life, but in every facet of our society for the benefit of common man, to ensure ease of living for him, he declared.
The Chief Minister, who recommended to the House to unanimously adopt the motion of thanks to the Governor of Punjab for his address to the House, said the Congress party had been voted to power for change and reforms to ensure good and transparent governance in the State for the welfare of the people.
The Chief Minister thanked the people of Punjab not only for ensuring peaceful elections but also for their maturity and understanding in rooting out a ten-year old Government which not only compromised with economic, social, cultural and financial honour of Punjab, but also denied the Punjabis a safe and secure future.
The people of Punjab have, over the last decade, suffered an extraordinary VVIP culture, arrogance of power laden with corruption emerging out of drug trafficking and mafias such as mining mafia, liquor mafia, land mafia, cable mafia, transport mafia and many more.
Rule of law was an exception and every rogue was considered right, the Chief Minister noted.
The voice of the common man was crushed in the jungle raj unleashed by the previous Government, Captain Amarinder lamented, listing out drugs, sacrilege and farmer suicides as some of the major problems left by the erstwhile Akali government, along with the various scams and mafias ruling the state.
His government had instituted a fresh Judicial Commission of Inquiry to probe the incidents of sacrilege, while the Judicial Commission set up to look into false cases will also come out with the truth soon, said the Chief Minister, declaring that “We shall not spare anyone involved in implicating innocent common people in false cases, be it a politician or an official.” “Mr. Speaker, all those guilty of false cases will be brought to justice after a thorough judicial enquiry,” he added.
In his speech, the Chief Minister announced various important decisions and schemes, some of which will be unveiled in the Budget Speech of the Finance Minister. He also reiterated his government’s vow not to allow the waters of Punjab to be diverted to other states at any cost.
An emotional Captain Amarinder closed his speech with the oft-quoted lines of the poet Robert Frost.
The Woods are (no longer) lovely, dark and deep,
But I have promises to keep,
And miles to go before I sleep,
And miles to go before I sleep.
He went on to assure the House and the people of Punjab that his Government would follow a constructive agenda and usher in better governance and restore the people’s faith in democracy and the rule of law. The people of the state are fully aware of the conditions that existed in the last ten years. However, this decade of mis-governance must end, and we would ensure this decisively.
He concluded with a Chinese proverb “Ït is better to light a lamp than to curse the darkness”.