Barbs flew thick and fast between Punjab Finance Minister Manpreet Singh Badal and Gidderbaha MLA Amarinder Raja Warring yet again on Sunday, after the former went to Madhir village to attend the bhog ceremony of his 97-year-old uncle Kartar Singh Madhir.
Madhir is a part of Warring’s Gidderbaha constituency.
While paying tributes to his uncle, Manpreet Badal announced a grant of Rs 30 lakh for Madhir for laying sewer pipes in the village to solve the problem of disposal of sewer water into the village pond.
SAD President Sukhbir Singh Badal, his wife, Bathinda MP Harsimrat Kaur Badal, also attended the same bhog ceremony, as Kartar was their common relative.
The announcement of Madhir, however, did not go down well with Warring who said, “Kartar Singh was earlier with the SAD, before he went to Manpreet’s PPP, then to the AAP, before finally returned to the SAD. True, Punjab’s ponds need money for sewer disposal. However, the finance minister announced this grant today only in the memory of his Mamaji and that pond in question is near the house of his relative. Hence, he should have spent money from his own pocket, rather than burdening the state’s exchequer, which already is faced with a cash crunch.”
Manpreet Badal, however, hit back by saying, “As a state’s finance and planning minister, I am entitled to announce funds for projects if I am approached for the same. The village panchayat from here had approached me for carrying out the pond’s water discharge work. Even at the bhog, they raised the issue again. So, I made this announcement. It was just a coincidence that the announcement happened at a bhog ceremony.”
Last Sunday, SAD leader Sarup Singh Singla had raised the issue of alleged illegal sand mining inside the Bathinda thermal plant area and Raja Warring had shared the video asking Punjab CM to get the matter investigated and punish the culprits. Singla meanwhile had accused Manpreet Badal and his brother-in-law of being behind the sand mining.