Will probe earlier govts. over Punjab’s financial mess, says Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann

Come clean on cost of AAP’s huge advertisements, say Akalis

April 18, 2022 08:23 pm | Updated 08:23 pm IST - CHANDIGARH

Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann speaks during a press conference. File

Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann speaks during a press conference. File | Photo Credit: PTI

After Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann blamed the previous governments for pushing the State into a financial mess and announced a probe into where the the State’s revenues had gone, the Shiromani Akali Dal on Monday said the probe should not be used as an excuse to delay fulfilling the poll promises made by the Aam Aadmi Party.

Mr. Mann said Punjab is reeling under a debt of ₹3 lakh crore and the previous governments were responsible for the financial mess. He added that an inquiry shall be ordered to find out where the money was spent as it was public money.

Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) leader Daljit Cheema welcomed the Chief Minister’s decision to order a probe into the ₹3 lakh crore debt, adding that the inquiry should not be used to divert attention from fulfilling the promises made to the people of the State. The party also demanded a probe into all advertisements released by the AAP government in the last one month in office, he said.

“We are all for a free and fair probe into the ₹3 lakh crore debt accumulated by the State but this probe should not be used as an excuse to delay fulfilling the promises made to the people,” said Mr. Cheema.

The senior leader said the previous Congress government had used the excuse of an empty treasury to renege on all promises made to the people. “Despite knowing the reality of the financial position of the State before taking over the reins of the State, Mr. Bhagwant Mann has now come up with an excuse to probe the reasons behind this position. The SAD feels the probe should not come in the way of fulfilling the government promise to distribute ₹1,000 to all women in the State besides ensuring 300 units of free power per month to all domestic consumers immediately,” he said.

Mr. Cheema said the Chief Minister should also order an inquiry into the advertisements released by the State during the last one month in office. “As per reports, taxpayer money is being used to spread the propaganda of the AAP across the country. Advertisements are being released in regional languages by the AAP government to project its alleged achievements in South India and even poll-bound States like Gujarat and Himachal Pradesh. Crores have been spent for this purpose which does not benefit Punjab or Punjabis in any manner whatsoever,” Mr. Cheema alleged.

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