Ludhiana: Accusing the SAD-BJP coalition of "ignoring" industries, Union Minister Manish Tewari on Tuesday said Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal was Union Minister of State for Industry when the NDA government accorded concessions to hill states while sidelining Punjab in 1998.
The coalition leaders should opt for introspection rather than blaming the Centre for all the problems, the Information and Broadcasting Minister told reporters here.
Tewari reminded the deputy chief minister that he himself was the Union Minister of State for Industry when the NDA government has special concessions were accorded by then NDA government to the hill states like Himachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir and Uttarakhand in 1998.
Shiromani Akali Dal played a key role in NDA government but it and it never objected to the concessions which adversely affected the industries in Punjab, he said.
Tewari was interacting with media-persons in the presence of Union Minister for Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises K H Muniyappa who visited the city today to meet entrepreneurs.
The SAD-BJP alliance should reveal its policy towards industry and the steps initiated coalition in this regard, Tewari said.
"They preach one thing and practise quite a different thing," he remarked, while pointing out not a single penny had been invested in the state during the last six years.
Tewari, who is Congress MP from Ludhiana, stated that the UPA government led by the Prime Minister Manmohan Singh was very much concerned about the plight of the industry in Punjab.
He said, it was at his request that Muniyappa had decided to visit Ludhiana and meet the small and medium entrepreneurs and assured that solutions to various problems will be found within a fixed time frame.