Hitting back at the Centre on the issue of held-up cash credit limit for foodgrain procurement, Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Badal today said the Union Food Ministry was to be blamed for the lapses as it had not reconciled the accounts with the state since 1997, despite being told to do so in writing time and again.
“We have our payments due. We have been raising our bills and have been asking the Centre to make adjustments in the accounts. The entire issue is not about the missing foodgrains, but about the mismatch in the calculations and we want that an independent person should tally the accounts and clarify all issues at the earliest,” he said.
He said this while interacting with the media on the sidelines of a function to distribute health insurance cards to traders under the Bhagat Puran Singh Sehat Bima Yojna here.
When asked why Food and Civil Supplies Minister and his brother-in-law Adesh Partap Singh Kairon said that Punjab diverted Rs 800 crore from the cash credit limit in 2010 to run the atta-dal scheme, he seemed a bit irked and said, “Ask him”.
Upset over ‘Udta Punjab’
Reacting to the upcoming film “Udta Punjab” showing 70 per cent drug addiction in the state, Sukhbir said, “That is unfortunate. You cannot blame a state. However, I can’t say anything on getting the movie banned. I have not seen it. Let me examine it.”
No proof of power scam
On the allegations of Rs 7,500-crore scam in the PSPCL levelled by former CLP leader Sunil Jakhar, Sukhbir said, “He comes even to the Assembly without facts. Every thermal plant was bid out and we are purchasing power at the same rate. We cannot pay a single penny more than the rate fixed by the regulatory commission.”
No deal with Kishor
The Deputy CM tried to duck the issue raised by AAP that Congress poll strategist Prashant Kishor tried to strike a Rs 400-crore deal with him. “Many such reports keep coming. There was nothing of that sort,” he said.