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Punjab local government minister Navjot Singh Sidhu today attacked the opposition SAD-BJP alliance alleging that they had ignored the interests of the state during their regime. Addressing a public gathering on the occasion of Rakhar Punia, Sidhu also claimed that the Congress government would not spare Akali leaders, who had allegedly indulged in corrupt practices and were also responsible for registration of false cases against innocent people. Hitting out at the Shiromani Akali Dal for launching a 'Jabar Virodhi lehar', the minister said the Akali leaders should remember how 'Jabar' (repression) was going under their patronage when they were in power in the state. Chief Minister Amarinder Singh was to preside over the function but due to inclement weather, he could not reach the conference site, officials said. Accusing the previous SAD-BJP government of "blatantly" ignoring the interests of Punjab, Sidhu said the misrule of the Akali-BJP government had put a debt burden of Rs three lakh crore on the state exchequer. He alleged that Akalis "plundered" the state's assets and also grabbed the transport and cable businesses.
Sidhu claimed that the Akalis had left the public transport with a debt burden of Rs 500 crore. Targeting the SAD, he alleged the the leaders of the party had become "kings" while leaving the people of the state to face miseries. On a demand put-forth by former MLA Jasbir Singh Dimpa, Sidhu on behalf of chief minister Captain Amarinder Singh announced that the status of Nagar Panchayat would be provided to Baba Bakala and a polytechnic college would be opened here. He also announced a grant of Rs one crore for the development of this historic town. Meanwhile, Rural Development and Panchayats Minister Tript Rajinder Singh Bajwa said that all the pre-poll promises made by the party would be fulfilled in time to come.
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