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Rahul snub makes Punjab CM knock at PM’s door

By Deepak Nagpal | Last Updated: Thursday, October 10, 2013 - 09:41

Zee Media Bureau/Deepak Nagpal

Sangrur (Punjab): An angry Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal has shot off a letter to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh, complaining about him not being invited for the foundation stone-laying ceremony for a cancer hospital here.

The ceremony, among others, will be attended by Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi later on Thursday.

Badal had earlier said that he was displeased about the fact that his government representatives had not been invited for the foundation stone-laying of PGI`s Satellite Cancer hospital that is being built in collaboration with Tata Memorial Cancer Hospital.

The ruling Shiromani Akali Dal said that it was the state government that had proposed the cancer hospital in the wake of surge in cases of the disease in Malwa region. Also, 25 acres land has also been allotted by the government.

According to the CM, since the event will be attended by Congress V-P Rahul Gandhi and Union Minister for Health and Family Welfare Ghulam Nabi Azad, ignoring the state government clearly hints at Congress’ attempt to gain political mileage from the event.

He has called for cancelling the event, describing the ignoring of the state government as a "violation of the federal system".

"I have protested this unwarranted move of the centre by writing a letter to the prime minister. This step is unfortunate," Badal told reporters in Jalandhar yesterday.

"I had personally pursued this project and the state government had given 25 acres of land free of cost," the CM stated.

"It does not behove such leadership to stoop so low, indulging in politicking over projects related to the prosperity and welfare of the general public," Badal said, hitting out at the Congress-led Central government.

Akali Dal spokesman Daljit Singh Cheema said: "This is happening for the first time in the history of the country when the Central government is initiating a project on land provided by the state government for the welfare of the public, but has totally ignored the state government while organising the function for the project."

The state Congress unit, on its part, said that it was PGI Chandigarh that decided on the invitation list for the event.

First Published: Thursday, October 10, 2013 - 09:39

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