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punjab: ‘Anguished at political events of last 5 months’: Amarinder wrote to Sonia before quitting | India News

CHANDIGARH: Hours before former Punjab chief minister Captain Amarinder Singh formally submitted his resignation on Saturday, he had written to Congress President Sonia Gandhi, expressing anguish at the political events of the last five months.
“Notwithstanding my personal anguish, I hope this will not cause any damage to the hard-earned peace and development in the state, and that the efforts I have been focusing during the last few years, would continue unabated, ensuring justice to one and all,” Captain Amarinder said in his letter.
In his letter, Captain Amarinder expressed his personal satisfaction at having done his best for the people as chief minister of Punjab, which, as a border state, “has many geo-political and other internal security concerns, which I tried to handle effectively without any compromise.”
He said he was happy that the state remained fully peaceful, and there was complete communal harmony with no ill-will towards anyone.
While she (Sonia) herself may be personally aware of some of the things achieved in the last four and a half years, “the people of Punjab are looking up to the Indian National Congress for its mature and effective public policies, which not only reflect upon good politics but also address the concerns of the common man that are specific to this border State,” wrote Captain Amarinder.
The 79-year-old Amarinder Singh, one of the Congress’ powerful regional satraps, had put in his papers on Saturday.
Amarinder said he had worked wholeheartedly for the welfare of the people of Punjab. “This was extremely satisfying for me because not only I established the rule of law, and ensured transparent governance, but maintained ethical conduct even in the management of political affairs, winning 8 out of 13 seats in the Parliament Elections in 2019 and the PRI and ULB Elections decisively.”
Referring to the numerous challenges faced by him over the last four-and-half years in fulfilling the promises made by the Punjab Congress in the Punjab Elections 2017, he pointed out that these notwithstanding, of the total promises made, his government had fulfilled 89.2 per cent, while work was in progress on the remaining commitments.
Citing the challenges posed by the pandemic Covid-19, he said his government faced the same in an effective and well-coordinated manner, ensuring minimum loss of public lives.
“The state is today nearly free from the pandemic, and persistent efforts are continuing not only to improve health infrastructure, but also to provide due care to the deserving people free of cost to prevent the much anticipated third wave,” he said, adding that Punjab was fully geared to meet the future challenges.
“It gives me great satisfaction that Punjab is the only State, which has decided to provide universal health insurance cover at its own cost in keeping with our manifesto commitment. Nearly 55 lakh families are now eligible for free cashless treatment in the State,” he said.
On the issue of the sacrilege cases and the subsequent police action of 2015, Captain Amarinder said his government, which was committed to ensuring justice in the matter, had established a Judicial Commission of Enquiry headed by Justice (Retd) Ranjit Singh, whose report was received on 16th August 2018. The report was accepted and full legal action was taken thereon, he said, sharing details of the same.
He pointed out that despite legal hurdles and refusal of CBI to return the cases, which were transferred to them by the SAD-BJP Government, his government had succeeded in filing 10 challans, while 24 persons had been charged, 15 police Personnel suspended, and 10 civilians arrested.
“The criminal proceedings in these cases are currently underway and I am sure that in due course justice will be done in due course,” he said.
With regard to the controversial Power Purchase Agreements that were signed by the previous government for the purchase of expensive power to ensure affordable supply to the people of the state, Captain Amarinder said his government had invested Rs. 3709 crore in electricity transmission and distribution infrastructure from 2017-21 and released about Rs. 11000 crore per annum to the benefit of 22 lac SC/BC consumers, and 14 lac farmers.
“For the first time, we supplied subsidised power to the industry at an annual cost of over Rs 2000 crore,” he said, adding that “Further, the review of the PPAs is currently under way.”
Talking about the farmers, whom he described as the backbone of Punjab’s economy, Captain Amarinder wrote that in line with its commitment to provide debt relief and repeal statutory provisions of attaching their properties, his government had given debt relief of Rs.4,624 crore to 5.64 lakh farmers and Rs.526 crore to 2.68 lakh farmworkers.
“In addition, we have repealed Section 67-A of the Punjab State Cooperative Societies Act, 1961, and also amended the Civil Procedure Code, disallowing attachment of agricultural land upto 2.5 acres,” he added.
Referring to his personal promise to the people of Punjab to break the back of drug peddlers and smugglers in the state, he said he had done so relentlessly by establishing a Special Task Force (STF) in this regard.
Pointing to his government’s 3-pronged strategy titled EDP – Enforcement, De-addiction and Prevention, he said as a result, 62,744 persons had been arrested, 202 OOAT clinics established, 6,28,083 Drug Abuse Prevention Officers (DAPOs) registered and 9,51,202 Buddy Groups formed.
He noted that with the revamp of the Mining Policy of the State in 2017, the State’s revenue had increased from Rs.35 crore per annum to Rs. 300 crore per annum.

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