Captain Amarinder challenges Kejriwal, Badal to debate

Chandigarh, November 5. Accusing Arvind Kejriwal of indulging in theatrical gimmickry in order to achieve his dream of becoming Punjab’s chief minister, Punjab Congress president Captain Amarinder Singh on Saturday challenged the AAP leader, as well as Akali leader Parkash Singh Badal, to an open, public debate on any issue relevant to the state Assembly elections. Accusing Kejriwal of being an escapist and trying to run away from a debate on one pretext or the other, Captain Amarinder said as a chief ministerial aspirant he should have the guts to face me directly, rather than put others in the front. Kejriwal had earlier named four party leaders to take on Captain Amarinder in a debate, saying he himself did not belong to Punjab.
Captain Amarinder dismissed Kejriwal’s claims that he did not want to become the chief minister of Punjab with a pinch of salt, saying it had become quite evident that the AAP leader’s eyes were set on Punjab’s top position and he was simply trying to mislead the people of the state by claiming otherwise. Replying to a question on Kejriwal’s charges of a Congress-BJP nexus, Captain Amarinder pointed out that he had been running around courts for the past 10 years, under the Badal regime. “Does that indicate a nexus,” he asked, asserting that he will not spare Badal once he is back in power. “We did it earlier, we will put him in his place again,” said Captain Amarinder.
To a question on giving martyr’s status to Subedar (Retd) Ram Kishen Grewal, whose suicide over the OROP issue had evoked nationwide anger and anguish, Captain Amarinder said he was totally in favour of the martyrdom status. “He laid down his life for his brethren, so that they could get their rightful dues, and deserves to be treated as martyr,” said the PPCC leader. Captain Amarinder said contrary to the defence ministry’s claims, OROP had not been implemented at all, and, in fact, pension had actually been reduced not just for the armed forces but also the paramilitary force under the 7th Pay Commission. The Punjab Congress chief reiterated that he had already made his stand on Navjot Singh Sidhu clear. “I have already welcomed him,” he said in reply to a question.
To a question on Delhi pollution resulting from stubble burning in Punjab, Captain Amarinder said the only solution lay in the implementation of the Swaminathan Committee report. Most of the farmers in the state are small-scale and resort to stubble burning to boost their income, he said, adding that once their income goes up the problem of stubble burning will automatically disappear. He charged Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal with making empty promises to farmers, and other sections of the people of Punjab, and asserted that he would not spare the corrupt Akali leader once he comes to power. Earlier, Captain Amarinder welcomed more than 300 AAP supports, as well as YAD spokesman from Malwa, into the Punjab Congress amid much slogan-shouting. He also interacted with a delegation of Ramgarhia Vishwakarma Front Punjab, as well as with a delegation of the All India Retailers Federation, and listened to their problems. He assured them of all possible support to address their problems.

Filed in: Amritsar News, Chandigarh News, Punjab News Tags: , , , ,

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