Sri Muktsar Sahib: Punjab government would
continue providing free electricity to farmers in the state,
as agriculture was no longer a profitable venture and had
reached a point of saturation, Chief Minister Parkash Singh
Badal on Monday said.
"There was hardly any reason to stop these subsidies which
have been given by the SAD-BJP alliance ever since they have
been voted to power in year 2007," the chief minister said.
Badal was addressing a gathering here during the
concluding day of his thanks giving tour of the Lambi Assembly
He reiterated that Punjab being a welfare state it was
duty of the state to provide these subsidies to the farmers
and the weaker sections of the society.
Moreover, he said, as agriculture was no longer a
profitable venture and had already reached a point of
saturation, it was the duty of the state government to protect
the interests of the farmers.
Likewise, the chief minister said owing to the high
inflationary trends prevalent in the country, the state
government also feels its moral responsibility of giving a
relief to the weaker sections of the society by providing them
However, Badal said the financial condition of the
state was very good and there was no dearth of funds for
carrying out development work in the state.
Welcoming the invitation extended by Pakistan President
Asif Ali Zardari to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh for visiting
Pakistan, Badal said it would help in strengthening bilateral
ties between the two countries.
With the improvement in bilateral ties between both
neighboring countries, more trade would take place which would
benefit them in general and Punjab in particular.
The chief minister denied allegations leveled by former
finance minister and nephew Manpreet Singh Badal that his
phones were being tapped by the state government.
Badal categorically said that the state government was
not indulged in any such activity.