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Chandigarh: Slamming the BJP led NDA government at centre for harassing non BJP government in the states, the Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann on Tuesday said that BJP was resorting to arm twisting tactics like stalling of Rural Development Fund (RDF) to target its opponents.

The Chief Minister, while summing up the discussion on resolution moved for release of RDF in the state on the floor of Punjab Vidhan Sabha, said that despite the fact that the state government has removed all the ambiguities done by the previous governments, the centre has not released the funds yet. Bhagwant Mann said that he had himself called on the Union Rural Development Minister who had assured him that these funds will be released soon. However, he said that it never happened and the Union government has stalled the RDF of the state worth more than Rs 3622 crore.

The Chief Minister said that everyone knows that the centre is targeting the non BJP governments in the country and not allowing them to work smoothly. He said that these tantrums had put democracy in peril across the country. Bhagwant Mann said that this is a dangerous trend which needs to be checked as it is not in the interest of the country.

The Chief Minister said that for fulfilling its nefarious designs in the state, the centre has appointed a person who is known as Governor. He said that the post of Governor has its traces in the British regime and still these selected ones live with the same pomp and show as their predecessors did. Bhagwant Mann said that as a fact of matter these Raj Bhawans have now emerged as the state Headquarters of BJP to meddle into affairs of the state.

The Chief Minister said that these selected ones are unnecessarily peeping in the work of the elected ones. He quipped that if the Governors don’t interfere in the affairs of the states then the centre rebukes the Governors for why they are sitting idle in the offices. Bhagwant Mann placed a record number of letters written by the Governor of Punjab and said that instead of writing such letters the Governor should flag the issues like RDF with the centre.

The Chief Minister, contrary to securing the interests of the state, the Punjab Governor is often seen on the other side when the issue of Panjab University is there. Bhagwant Mann said that the Union government has stalled Rs 3622 crore which can have been duly utilized for construction of link roads, upscaling of infrastructure in Mandis and others. He said that if this fund is not released then the state government will take up the matter in the Supreme Court of India for its early resolution.

The Chief Minister said that it is unfortunate that the centre is stalling the funds of the state which has made maximum contribution in the freedom struggle of the country. He questioned that is this recognition of the immense contribution of the great national heroes who had laid down their lives at the altar of the motherland. Bhagwant Mann also assailed the centre for dragging its feet from purchasing the golden harvest of the farmers.

The Chief Minister said that the farmers of the state are harassed by the central agencies on one pretext or other and then value cut is imposed. He said that the state government has been paying value cut to compensate the farmers of state and secure their interests. Bhagwant Mann said that what if the farmers of state deny selling the grains to these agencies then from where will the Union government get grains for Public Distribution System (PDS).

Slamming the Congress for running away from the debate on this important issue, the Chief Minister said that they are harming the interests of the state by doing so adding that Leader of Opposition Partap Bajwa is running away from giving answers on vital issues. He said that the people of state must ask them why they had run away from the house when a bill for stalling of RDF was being passed. Bhagwant Mann said that these leaders have nothing to do with the interests of the state because they are always concerned about their own vested interests.

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