Rebel AAP MLA Sukhpal Khaira Sunday announced the formation of Punjab Democratic Alliance (PDA) with Lok Insaaf Party, Bahujan Samaaj Party (BSP), suspended AAP MP, Dr Dharamvir Gandhi and other ‘like-minded parties’.
Speaking on the occasion, Khaira said that the alliance would aim to liberate Punjab from the “clutches of corrupt traditional parties and the corrupt feudal families of Badal, Capt Amarinder and others”.
He said that these corrupt parties and leaders had ruined a glorious state like Punjab for their lust to amass ill gotten wealth by looting the people. He said Punjab was facing a colossal debt of Rs 2.5 lakh crore, the farmers and labourers are committing suicides, lakhs of unemployed youth have taken to drugs or are migrating to foreign shores because of hopelessness, frustration and dejection.
Khaira vowed to continue seeking justice for sacrilege of Guru Granth Sahib and the victims of Behbal Kalan police firing. He said the Congress government had hoodwinked the Insaaf Morcha by making false promises on the issue, which will never be implemented. He announced that if the government failed to render justice on sacrilege and Behbal killings within a month, the PDA would announce an action plan on the occasion of Maghi in January.
Dr Gandhi, in his address, attacked the central government for encroaching upon the rights of the states and Punjab through gross centralisation. He said the larger aim of PDA would be to strive for a federal India and a democratic Punjab. He added it was unfair for the central government to unilaterally implement schemes of education, healthcare, rural development, MNREGA without taking into the consideration the aspirations of the people of our state. He said the PDA would approach other regional parties of India to unite and seek a true federal country.
Simarjeet Bains, president LIP, targeted the Congress government for its failure to redress the grievances of small and medium scale industry and its workers. He said the so called relief of Rs five per unit electricity charges has only benefitted a few hundred large industrial houses, while more than 30,000 smaller industries are paying through their nose for heavy electricity tariffs. Bains said the employees of state are up in arms against the draconian policies of Congress government which is playing a cruel joke on its own employees by snatching their dues.
BSP state president Rashpal Raju said the weaker sections and Dalits are being exploited through petty welfare schemes of Atta-Dal, meagre pensions etc, while they are being denied their right of quality education, healthcare, affordable housing and employment. Suspended rebel MLA Kanwar Sandhu while speaking on the occasion charged the Amarinder government for perpetrating the “Akali-sponsored mafia raj”. He said Congress mafia now continues to rule the roost be it illegal mining, liquor trade, transport, cable network etc. He said the political class and bureaucracy have joined hands to blatantly loot the people of Punjab. He said the Capt Amarinder Singh government appears to be an extended version of the Badal government with same corrupt work culture and even same officers like DGP Suresh Arora.
United Akali Dal president Mohkam Singh also addressed the gathering. The PDA announced it would contest the ensuing Lok Sabha elections and welcome more like-minded parties and individuals who maintain equal distance from the Congress, BJP and SAD, so that Punjab can be saved the agony of corruption and feudalism.