Chandigarh: Punjab has faced "discrimination and injustice" from the Centre, Governor Shivraj V Patil said on Monday while demanding the transfer of Chandigarh and other Punjabi speaking areas to the state.
"Punjabis were denied their legitimate right to have a state formed on the basis of their linguistic identity," he said while addressing the members of the 14th Legislative Assembly on the opening day of the budget session.
In his one hour address, the Governor expressed concern over the "dilution" of powers given to the states, sacrificing the federal impulse to create a "unitary structure" and reducing states to "mere beggars" at the doors of the Centre.
Noting that Punjab was "discriminated" against, he said, "Our capital city, Chandigarh, too was denied to us."
Chandigarh had still not been transferred to Punjab even 47 years after it was decided that it would go to the state, he said while demanding that it and other Punjabi speaking areas should be given immediately.
He also said the state was meted out a "grave injustice" on the river waters issue.
"Punjab seeks no favours; it only demands that its natural and constitutional right on river waters be protected as per the nationally and internationally accepted Riparian principle.
"In India, Riparian principle has been violated only in the case of Punjab. The government is opposed to any national river water policy that is framed in violation of the Riparian principle," he said.
The Governor, who has political lineage to Congress before assuming the charge of the coveted post, omitted most of the achievements of the SAD-BJP alliance government in his address.
Besides, in his entire address, the Governor preferred not to use the word "my" before the government in his prepared text and referred it to as "the."
While former Punjab Congress Chief Amarinder Singh was conspicuous by his absence, new incumbent Partap Singh Bajwa sat for a brief in the Governor`s gallery during the speech.