Punjab CM Capt Amarinder protests special incentives for hill states

Chandigarh, August 18: Opposing the Centre’s decision to extend special tax incentives to hill states, chief minister Captain Amarinder Singh on Friday said he will pursue Punjab’s demand for extending similar incentives to border areas and the Kandi belt in the state.

Talking to mediapersons after inaugurating an exhibition organised by the Photo Journalists Welfare Association in Chandigarh, the CM said the Kandi belt and the border areas also have special problems and deserve to be put at par with hill states in terms of the incentives given by the Centre.

CM Amarinder

Capt said his government had taken up the issue with the Centre earlier also and will pursue the case more aggressively now that the decision on the hill states had been taken.

Finance minister Arun Jaitley has said on Wednesday that industries in the north eastern and Himalayan states will continue to get tax exemption till March 2027, albeit as refund, under the current GST regime.

In response to a question on the upcoming verdict on Dera Sacha Sauda sect chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim Singh, he made it clear that nobody will be allowed to disturb the state’s law and order.

The CM said he had directed the police to remain alert against any attempt to disrupt peace in Punjab. Peace has to be maintained at all costs in order to ensure the state’s progress, he added.

To a question on the T Haq committee’s findings and recommendations on the crop loan waiver issue, he said he has received the report and will study it and take appropriate decisions in the interest of the farmers.

Amarinder also clarified that no second committee has been formed to examine the Justice Narang panel’s report on the sand mine auctions and the allegations against power and irrigation minister Rana Gurjit. “I’ve marked the report to the chief secretary to study its findings.”

On speculation regarding expelled AAP leader Sucha Singh Chhotepur joining the Congress, the CM said, “Chhotepur is a good friend, but we have not met for the past two months.”

He also announced a running trophy for the best photographer of the year, to be presented in December every year.

Source: hindustantimes.com