SAS Nagar (Mohali) : Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh on Monday expressed the hope that the SYL issue would be resolved amicably through talks between Punjab and Haryana.
Interacting with the media after inaugurating the Digital Investigation Training and Analysis Centre (DITAC) here, the Punjab Chief Minister said teams of the two states, led by their respective Chief Secretaries, were already engaged in dialogue and three-four rounds of talks had already been held.
The two states would take the process of dialogue forward and he hoped the matter could be resolved through discussion in the 4-month timeframe set by the Supreme Court, Captain Amarinder said in response to a question. It would be better for all concerned if the issue is settled through talks, he added.
In response to a question, the Chief Minister made it clear that there was no question of the state government backing out of support for the SGPC to hold its celebration of the 550th Prakash Purb of Sri Guru Nanak Dev ji, as was being alleged. The government would extend full support to the religious body for any event it planned to hold within the Gurudwara Sahib precincts, while the state would hold the main event outside the premises, as in the past, he added. As a religious body, the SGPC was entitled to hold any event within the gurdwaras it controls, he said, but once again appealed to them to cooperate with his government in holding a joint state-level programme, befitting of the historic occasion.
Asked to comment on the performance of the Modi government on completion of 100 days, Captain Amarinder said it was too soon to evaluate and one would have to wait to make any assessment. However, he asserted that India needed stability, and as a secular nation, the government would have to take all religions along to build a secular society and ensure the country’s progress.
On the issue of the case registered against Lok Insaf Party MLA Simarjit Singh Bains by the police, the Chief Minister said he had issued the necessary instructions after seeing the video showing Bains abusing the Gurdaspur DC. Nobody had the right to enter any government’s official’s office and misbehave in this manner, he said, but added that, at the same time, he had also directed all officers to extend all respect to the common citizens and elected representatives.
Captain Amarinder rejected SAD and AAP allegation of non-fulfilment of his government’s promise to distribute cycles among girl students, saying a budget had been duly allocated for the purpose. Cycles were distributed last year and again this year, but the only difference from the previous years was that, unlike former chief minister Prakash Singh Badal, he had not got his picture embossed on the bikes, Captain Amarinder quipped.
Asked for the reason for deciding to hold the September 10 cabinet meeting in Sultanpur Lodhi instead of Chandigarh, the Chief Minister clarified he and his entire cabinet had decided to visit the area to oversee the arrangements for the 550th birth anniversary celebrations of Sri Guru Nanak Dev ji, and would this hold their meeting also there.
Expressing concern over the growing stray dog menace in the state, the Chief Minister disclosed that he had already ordered a state-wide sterilization drive. There were 4,25,000 stray dogs in state and around 1.25 Lac dog bite cases had been reported, he said, replying to another question.
On a query about the alleged death and disappearance of 200 cows from a Mohali shelter home, the Chief Minister asked the Deputy Commissioner to investigate and submit a detailed report for further action.
Asked about the development of Saragarhi memorial, he said the government had already sanctioned Rs 1 crore for the same, and a committee had been constituted for its timely completion. It was a project close to his heart, he said, recalling that he had written a book on the iconic battle.
In response to a question on the Supreme Court’s observations on the amended Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act, the Chief Minister said his government would adhere to the apex court’s orders and directions.