Other States

Punjab Assembly witnesses noisy scenes

Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann speaks during the Punjab Legislative Assembly Session, in Chandigarh on Saturday.

Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann speaks during the Punjab Legislative Assembly Session, in Chandigarh on Saturday. | Photo Credit: PTI

Noisy scenes were witnessed in the Punjab Assembly on Saturday when Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann rose to speak on the Governor’s address with Congress MLAs protesting that they were denied the time to speak.

Congress MLAs shouted slogans demanding time to speak, to which Speaker Kultar Singh Sandhwan responded, saying that allocated time has been given to the members. Following this, Congress MLAs led by the Leader of the Opposition Partap Singh Bajwa left the House in protest.

Mr. Mann announced the introduction of comprehensive law and order reforms in the State to eliminate “gangster culture”. He said that the government will soon introduce a witness protection Bill and modify jails of the State into high-security prisons.

The Chief Minister said that the State government is committed to maintaining law and order. He said that a peaceful atmosphere will always prevail in the State and severe action will be taken against anyone trying to disturb the hard-earned peace of the State. The government is according topmost priority to maintain peace and prosperity in State, he said.

A White Paper on the State’s finances was also tabled in the House by Finance Minister Harpal Cheema, which stated that Punjab was in an economic morass and debt trap, blaming the previous governments for the financial crises.

According to the White Paper, the current outstanding debt of Punjab stands at ₹2.63 lakh crore, which is 45.88% of the State Gross Domestic Product (SGDP).

Congress MLA Sukhpal Singh Khaira claimed that the paper presented by the AAP government was similar to that released by the previous Congress government in 2017.

In a tweet, he said “I have read the ‘White Paper’ released today it’s just a carbon copy of 2017 paper presented by Capt Amarinder Singh (ex-Chief Minister) without fixing any responsibility or any accountability nor any concrete suggestions to improve economy! Plus it’s an escape route for Bhagwant Mann from their guarantees!”

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Printable version | Aug 14, 2022 4:13:58 pm | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/punjab-assembly-witnesses-noisy-scenes/article65564905.ece