Shirom Akali Dal (SAD) president Sukhbir Singh Badal on Saturday said Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh should resign for compromising the interests of the state by being hand in glove with the Bharatiya Janata Party-led Centre in punishing the farmers protesting against the three agricultural laws.
The SAD president who was addressing a press conference when queried also disclosed that the Punjab and Haryana high court order quashing the SIT formed by the Congress government in the Kotkapura police firing case had made it clear that the chief minister was not interested in finding the guilty but was using the case to implicate the Badal family. He said it was now clear that the SIT was formed to indulge in political vendetta.
Stating that the chief minister had sold off the interests of the State to the BJP, Sukhbir Badal said "forget fighting for the rights of the State, Capt Amarinder does not even raise the issues affecting the people of the State with the central government".
He said the chief minister had time and again agreed with all the anti-farmer steps taken by the central government.
Badal said the Kisan Andolan would not have started if CM Amarinder had taken prompt action when the Agricultural Ordinances were being framed.
He said at that time the chief minister was part of the committee in which the Ordinances were discussed.
"Later when an opportunity arose to repeal the three Agricultural Acts in the Punjab assembly the chief minister proposed amendments in the Acts instead of rejecting them altogether," he said.
Badal said recently the chief minister indulged in a drama of opposing the Direct Benefit Transfer (DBT) scheme which he had agreed in writing to implement from this year.
"Amarinder even assured farmers and 'arhatiyas' that the scheme would not be implemented in Punjab but the ministerial team led by finance minister Manpreet Badal meekly surrendered before the centre in its meeting with Food and Public Distribution minister Piyush Goyal," he said in a press release.
He said the chief minister had similarly also surrendered before the centre on the issue of seeking rightful compensation of Rs 800 crore to the State on account of Rural Development Fund (RDF).
"It is the State's right to impose taxes and the chief minister should not allow the centre to infringe on the State's powers in a federal set up," he said.
He also castigated the chief minister for not opposing the increase in fertilizer prices, stating the latter's unholy tie-up with the BJP government was affecting the very livelihood of the farming community.
Badal said it was a matter of record that the chief minister had not met the Prime Minister even once to get the problems of the farmers resolved.
"Punjabis have been left to their plight. In such a situation Amarinder has lost the moral right to continue in his chair. He should resign immediately," he added.
Badal also appealed to Prime Minister Narendra Modi to hold a meeting with farmer orgzations and resolve all their grievances including repealing the three Agricultural laws.
He also demanded that the Congress government take appropriate measures for the smooth procurement of wheat.
He said the seizure of three truckloads of wheat brought from outside the State yesterday indicated that like during the last paddy season, Congress ministers would also bring cheap wheat from outside the State to be procured on MSP here. "We will not allow such malpractices and will oppose them tooth and nail", he added.
( With inputs from ANI )
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