SAD chief Sukhbir Singh Badal on Tuesday promised Rs 50,000 per acre compensation for crop damage, restoration of old pension scheme for government employees, free power for all religious places and ending alleged sand and liquor mafia if the SAD-BSP alliance comes to power in Punjab next year.
Shiromani Akali Dal patron and five-time Punjab chief minister Parkash Singh Badal exuded confidence that in the coming assembly elections, the SAD-BSP alliance would repeat the performance like it had witnessed in 1996 when it had won all Lok Sabha seats.
Addressing a rally organised to commemorate the centenary celebrations of the Akali Dal, SAD chief Sukhbir Singh Badal said there would be four fronts -- the BJP, the Congress, the AAP and the SAD-BSP in the coming assembly polls. "Out of these four, only the SAD-BSP alliance is your front. We know your issues and problems and (will) also fight for you," he said while exhorting people to vote for the alliance.
He lashed out at rival political parties - Congress, AAP and the BJP - for not understanding the problems and raising the issues of people of the state. The Akali Dal was formed on December 14, 1920 and completed 100 years last year.
Announcing new poll promises, Sukhbir Badal said farmers would be given crop insurance cover for any damage of their crop and minimum Rs 50,000 compensation would be given if the SAD-BSP alliance comes to power. He further promised restoration of the old pension scheme for government employees. At present, the employees recruited after 2004 are not entitled for pension after retirement.
"Electricity supply to all religious places, including gurdwara, temple, mosque and church, will be made free," he said. He also promised formation of a government corporation for the mining sector to end the sand mafia. Badal also promised to end the monopoly in the liquor business. He said more graveyard grounds would be made available for the Muslim and Christian communities.
He announced that the SAD-BSP alliance would not allow anyone to disturb the peace and communal harmony in the state. "'Bhaicharak Sanjh' cannot be compromised with. I am also committed to taking Punjab to new heights of development”, he further said.
Later, former chief minister and Akali stalwart Parkash Singh Badal said in 1996 when there was an alliance between SAD and BSP, it won all Lok Sabha seats. This time too, the alliance will get similar results and repeat history, asserted Badal. The former chief minister said he will perform whatever duty the party assigns him for the upcoming assembly elections. Badal said the choice before Punjabis was “straight and simple”. It's one between having a government of the Punjabis, for the Punjabis and by the Punjabis on the one hand or having “boastful puppets” remote controlled by outsiders, he said.
The Akali stalwart also warned the Government of India against the “dangerous adventurism” of the past and said nothing should be done to disturb the atmosphere of peace and communal harmony in Punjab and outside.
Speaking on the occasion, Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) general secretary Satish Mishra said the alliance was set to sweep the forthcoming polls by securing 100 seats. He also lashed out at other rival parties including the Congress and the AAP. A resolution condemning the Congress government's alleged attempts to register false cases against SAD-BSP alliance leaders was passed in the rally.
-With PTI Inputs