Chandigarh, June 25:
Reiterating the firm commitment of the state government to eliminate gangster culture from the state, Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann today announced to introduce comprehensive law and order reforms in the state.
Winding up the discussion on Governor’s address at the floor of Punjab Vidhan Sabha, the Chief Minister said that the state government is duty bound to curb gangster activities in the state. He said that need of the hour is to bring comprehensive law and order reforms. Bhagwant Mann said that the state government will soon introduce witness protection bill and modify jails of state into high security jails.
The Chief Minister said that the state Government has already set up Anti-Gangster Task Force headed by an ADGP Rank officer. He said that this task force has been directed to adopt zero tolerance towards gangsters and work without any fear and prejudice adding that the force is being equipped with advance facilities and resources for this purpose. Bhagwant Mann said that STF in coordination with district police, Intelligence wing, BSF, NCB and other agencies is launching need based operations to check cross border smuggling of narcotics and weapons.
The Chief Minister, while highlighting the achievements of state government so far and laying down the roadmap for future, said that delivering these dream will not be a smooth task and there will be challenges at every step as they will be tested on this mission l. But, Bhagwant Mann said that he is confident that they will pass every test with flying colors. Soliciting support and cooperation of all members of the house across party lines, he said that they should work tirelessly to rebuild the Punjab of our Dreams.
The Chief Minister said that this is a historic occasion and they have been blessed by the almighty to play a big role. Giving a clarion call to members, he asked them to work in unison with ideals of Shaheed Bhagat Singh and Baba Sahib Dr BR Ambedkar, whose relentless hard work and sacrifices have gave them this opportunity to serve the masses. “Let us ensure this revolution of change and good governance reaches every household and every person of Punjab”, he added.
Dwelling on another issue, the Chief Minister said that the state government is committed for maintaining law and order in the state at every cost. He said that Peaceful atmosphere will always prevail in the state and severest of severe action will be taken against anyone trying to disturb hard earned peace of the state. Bhagwant Mann said that his government is according top most priority to maintain peace and prosperity in state.
Announcing a war against drugs, the Chief Minister categorically said that Police has been directed not to spare anyone conniving with the Drug Mafia. He said that SSPs/CPs have been asked to work in close coordination with STF to catch big sharks involved in the supply of Drugs adding that every Police officer will be held accountable for laxity in dealing with the drug menace within their jurisdiction. Bhagwant Mann also said that the state government has increased the number of OOAT clinics from existing 280 to 500 to ensure ease of accessibility of treatment to recovering drug addicts.
The Chief Minister said that the state government believes that the members of this esteemed House carry with them the onus of being pioneers of reforms. So, he said that in an exemplary step, the state government will introduce One Pension for an MLA bill in the ongoing session instead of the present provision of allowing a pension for every term.
The Chief Minister said that Corruption free governance is at the core of the ethos of the state government, which has been duly proved in its actions in the last 100 days. He said that Anti-corruption helpline was launched within the first few days of forming the government and in just a short period of time, 29 cases have been registered and and 47 arrests have been made. Bhagwant Mann said that the state government has exhibited a zero-tolerance policy against corruption by initiating an action against its own Cabinet minister. “The walls of this house have seen so many governments but none of them has initiated action against corruption to this extent in the past” he added.
Describing Education as bedrock for building a new society, the Chief Minister announced to introduce Multi-pronged improvements in the education sector adding that Government schools will be transformed into ‘Schools of Eminence’. He said that to ensure that students get quality and affordable education, the government is committed not only to build state of art government schools, but also to regulate the fees of private schools by not allowing them to enhance their fees arbitrarily from this academic year. Bhagwant Mann said that NOC of schools found violating the Fee Act 2016 will be cancelled and a fine of Rs. 1 lakh will be imposed.
The Chief Minister said that Schools are no longer allowed to force parents to buy books or uniforms from any particular shop. He said that though teachers form the core of providing quality education to our children, the welfare of teachers have often been neglected by successive governments. Bhagwant Mann said that state government has already started process of filling vacant lying posts and the recruitment of 5994 ETT Teachers and 8393 Pre-primary teachers is under process. He said that from now teachers will be deployed for core-teaching tasks and a separate cadre for non-teaching works will be created.
Underscoring need for revamping teacher training practices, the Chief Minister said that the best practices will be taken from across the country and the world. He said that in collaboration with Regional English Language Office of the U.S. Embassy in New Delhi (RELO), the Department of School Education, Punjab is going to train a faculty (around 50 mentors). Bhagwant Mann said that focus will also be given on quality education in our colleges and universities adding that UGC pay scales to college teachers and universities will be given at the earliest.
The Chief Minister, while expressing concern over brain drain in the state, said that quality Technical Education can stop this trend for which 19 new government industrial training institutes are being set up by state government. He said that as per the demand of the industry, 44 new courses are under consideration to introduce in various ITIs. Bhagwant Mann said that Department of Technical Education and Industrial Training is soon going to start Boiler Attendant course as apprenticeship trade in the State of Punjab, which will help in engaging 15000 youth of Punjab under the scheme.
Coining the slogan ‘Tandarust Mann te Tandarust Vichaar’, the Chief Minister said that Quality and Accessibility are the two key elements of an effective healthcare system at the grassroots level. He said that Mohalla Clinics in Urban Areas and Pind Clinics in Rural areas are being introduced for affordable and quality treatment adding that these clinics will be a cornerstone in revamping the healthcare system in Punjab. Bhagwant Mann said that during the first phase, 75 Mohalla Clinics will be opened to mark the 75th year of Independence adding that these clinics will cover the far-off places within the State, which are difficult to reach and will provide free medicines and diagnostic tests to the people.
The Chief Minister said that state government is committed to ensure absolute care of Mother and Child. He said that for this purpose seven new Maternal and Child Health wings are being constructed at Gurdaspur, Nabha, Patti, Raikot, Muktsar, Talwandi Sabo and Derabassi. Bhagwant Mann also announced to upgrade 2950 Health sub-centers to Tandarust Punjab Sehat Kendras adding that CHCs and PHCs across the state will soon be upgraded to five-star ratings in the years to come.
The Chief Minister said 122 new services have been launched through the Sewa Kendras and Working hours of Sewa Kendras have also been extended and now they are operational even on Saturdays and Sundays. He said that to bring in efficiency in administration, a host of administrative reforms are also being initiated.
The Chief Minister further said that the state government is working overtime to provide houses to the Economically Weaker Section of the society. He said that around 25,000 EWS houses will be constructed in different phases in coming future. Bhagwant Mann said that strict enforcement of checking of unauthorized colonies has been embarked. Describing urban planning as the core requirement for the development of the state, he said that preparation of Master Plans of all remaining towns of the state will be completed in 2-3 years.
The Chief Minister further said that in agriculture sector the government has already promoted a third crop, in form of Moong which is being procured at an MSP of Rs 7275/- per quintal adding that it will yield our farmers an additional income of Rs 30000/- per acre. He said that area under summer moong has enhanced from 54,363 acres to 1,28,495 acres. Similarly, Bhagwant Mann said diversification of more crops will be encouraged and area under pulses, maize, cotton and oilseeds will be increased as it will save our precious groundwater and improve soil health as well.
The Chief Minister said that subsidy of Rs 1500 per acre is being provided for Direct Seeding of Rice, which is another landmark initiative. He said that Punjabis are working together to save water and 25,985 farmers are sowing paddy via DSR this year. Bhagwant Mann said that the number of small and marginal farmers is expected to increase in coming times due to fragmentation of land holdings, which will make it difficult for farmers to carry out agricultural practices economically.
The Chief Minister said that in such scenario Farmer Producer Organizations (FPOs) can provide an opportunity by aiming at providing better income for the producers. Underlining need for modernisation and digitisation in agriculture, he said that for this the farmer data base is being integrated along with land records so that subsidies and other benefits can reach farmers in a transparent manner. Bhagwant Mann said that a portal for tracking seeds, fertilizers, and pesticides from manufacturing to end user for providing quality inputs to farmers has also been developed.
The Chief Minister also announced that 7000 new dairy units will be established in the next 2 years. He said that promotion of dairy sector will provide self-employment to the youth of the state.
The Chief Minister announced to provide Capital intensive infrastructure at the primary Co-operative society level at subsidized rates to curtail the cost of farm operations. He said that “Cooperative Machinery Tracker Application” has been created by Cooperative department for optimal usage of agriculture implements. Bhagwant Mann said that Markfed has been appointed as the agency to arrange milling, filling and distribution of Atta to PDS beneficiaries at their door step under NFSA.
The Chief Minister said that a New Cattlefeed plant is being set up at Gidderbaha with capacity of 150 TPD. He said that to support its milk producers, Milkfed has increased its milk procurement price by Rs. 20/- per kg milk fat respectively. Bhagwant Mann said that new milk processing plants are being set up at Ludhiana, Ferozepur, Jalandhar and GADVASU Ludhiana adding that 50 MTPD Verka Cattle Feed Plant is being set up Ghania Ke Banger, Gurdaspur.
The Chief Minister further said that the state government shall offer, to every beneficiary enrolled under NFSA, the option of home delivery of Atta under NFSA. He said that any beneficiary, who wishes to physically collect his entitlement of wheat from an FPS, shall have an option of OPT-OUT through a suitable IT intervention freely available to him. Bhagwant Mann said that through the scheme the state government will reach 157,75,569 beneficiaries and provide them good quality ‘Atta’.
The Chief Minister said that as a humble tribute to the brave soldiers who had laid their lives for safeguarding borders of the country and maintaining law and order, the state government has enhanced honorarium given to the families of martyred soldiers to Rs. 1 Crore. He also announced to set up ultra modren sports stadiums across the state to channelise the unbounded energy of youth in positive direction, so that they can bring laurels for the state in national and international competitions. Bhagwant Mann said that the state government has taken a historic decision to advertise 25,000 posts lying vacant in various Punjab Government Departments/ Boards /Corporations/ Agencies within one month.
The Chief Minister said that the state government has launched Direct buses from Punjab to Delhi airport in the first 100 days. He said that the fare of state of the art luxury buses are 50% cheaper and they provide more facilities and comfort than private buses. Bhagwant Mann said that as a major step towards the E-Governance, the state government has recently launched Aadhar based e- Learner’s Licence for Citizens of Punjab with deemed approval and downloading of Learner’s Licence in Mobile. With this People of Punjab will not require to visit RTO Office and it will give benefit to more than 5 lakh people annually, he added.
Soliciting support of NRIs for restoring pristine glory of state, the Chief Minister called upon them to set up industrial hubs, to partner in developing model schools and hospitals in their villages. He said that NRIs can contribute 50% to the construction of any infrastructure such as school buildings, community services, hospitals, drinking water, sewerage, latrine, streetlights, sports stadiums and other projects and the remaining 50% will be spent by the State Government. Bhagwant Mann said that the state government is laying thrust on facilitating NRIs through Online grievance redressal and appointment of special grievance redressal officers.
The Chief Minister also reiterated commitment of state government to provide 100% clean piped drinking water and sewerage networks in state. He said that to improve social and economic situation in villages, state government ha embarked two missions firstly rescue of Panchayat lands and revival of Gram Sabha in the state. Bhagwant Mann said that a total of 6100 acres were freed from encroachment. He said that Punjab government is stressing on the revival of gram Sabha to bring about socio-economic change in the state.
The Chief Minister said that rural development department has started the process of rejuvenation of village ponds and to make water fit for agriculture use. He said that state government has prepared an action plan of 10 years for rejuvenation/ restoration of village ponds adding that support of eminent environmentalist Sant Baba Balbir Singh Seechewal is also being taken for this noble cause.
The Chief Minister said that Ecotourism will be boosted in the state and plans are a afoot to develop Ranjit Sagar Dam reservoir as an international tourism destination. He said Department will complete various commemorative memorials and museum projects, undertake upgradation of Shaheed Bhagat Singh Museum at Khatkar Kalan and of Anglo-Sikh War Memorial and Museum as well as development of Ajj Sarovar at Kharar, Pandav Sarovar at Gharuan and Art and Culture Center at Patiala. Bhagwant Mann said that a massive Afforestation and Greening drive has been initiated in the State of Punjab for augmentation of forest and tree cover through plantation of more than 1.2 crore saplings.
The Chief Minister said that state government has taken important decision to abolish the Stamp Papers in paper form and in its place the electronic stamp system has been implemented for all denominations, which can be obtained from any stamp vendor or bank authorized by the Punjab Government. He said that this will make it easier for the general public to get the stamp paper of every denomination and at the same time, it saves crores of rupees of Punjab Government, which are spent on printing of stamp papers. Bhagwant Mann said that process of data entry of e-Girdawari is being started through mobile application from this season.
The Chief Minister said that in another path breaking initiative phone and email of the land owners is being done with Jamabandis. Likewise, he said that Revenue Record like Jamabandi, Mutations, Rapats/Roznamchas and others of all the villages of the Tehsil/Sub Tehsil have been computerized. Bhagwant Mann said that 172 Fard Kendras have been made operational and record of about 13098 Revenue Estates have been computerized.
Expressing gratitude to the people of Punjab for giving huge mandate to his government, the Chief Minister said that he humbly bows to the will of the people as they have risen above the narrow divisions of caste, religion, class and proven that Punjab is united. Bhagwant Mann said that he promises that his government will fulfil the expectations of aam aadmi that have been put on our shoulders. He said that his government is committed to realise the dream of rebuilding the ‘Rangla’ Punjab’.