Amritsar: Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh on Sunday vowed to protect the state against the “nefarious designs” of Pakistan and said “we want peace but will not tolerate any aggression or attack on our territory”.
Any threat to Punjab will mean danger to entire India, he underscored.
Addressing the people of Punjab after unfurling the tricolour here on the occasion of the country’s 75th Independence Day, Singh also pledged to continue fighting with the farmers for the repeal of the Centre’s farm laws.
Calling for extreme vigil against Pakistan, he said, “We want peace but will not tolerate any aggression or attack on our territory.”
“We will teach them (Pakistan) the lesson of their lifetime if they try to be adventurous,” he added.
On the use of drones by Pakistan to smuggle arms and drugs into Punjab, Singh warned that Pakistan will not let go of any opportunity to take advantage of any of the state’s vulnerabilities.
Stressing the need to ensure peace in the state to promote the development of industry and the progress of its people, he said his government will not tolerate any threat, including those from gangsters and terrorists.
“We will deal with them squarely,” he said, adding that “any threat to Punjab will be a danger to our entire nation”.
Singh said since his government took charge, 47 Pakistani terrorist modules and 347 modules of gangsters have been busted. Some key gangsters have been deported from Armenia, the UAE and other countries while more are awaiting deportation.
In his address, the chief minister also spoke about the legal efforts made by his government to get the sacrilege cases back from the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI).
The previous SAD-BJP government had handed over three sacrilege cases to the CBI. It had also handed over another three FIRs registered in Kotkapura and Behbal Kalan firing cases to the central agency.
Since taking over the cases from the CBI, the Punjab Police has filed charge sheets in four of these cases against 23 people, 15 police personnel have been suspended, 10 people have been arrested and 10 challans have been presented, the chief minister said.
Later, during an informal interaction with mediapersons on the sidelines of the Independence Day function, Singh expressed concern about the continuing farmers’ agitation against the Centre’s agricultural laws.
He said he raised the issue recently in his meetings with the prime minister and the Union home minister.
He said he demanded the repeal of the farm laws that are “anti-farmer and against the spirit of the Constitution”.
Singh made it clear that he will continue to fight with the farmers for the withdrawal of these laws and will not let the sacrifices of those who lost their lives in this struggle go in vain.
“The fight against these black laws is not political,” he said.
Hundreds of farmers are encamped at Delhi’s border points of Singhu, Tikri and Ghazipur since November 2020. They have been demanding that the Farmers’ Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Act, 2020; Farmers’ (Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and Farm Services Act, 2020; and the Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act, 2020 be rolled back and a new law made to guarantee minimum support price (MSP) for their crops.
The government maintains the laws are pro-farmer and will usher in new technology in farming.
Several rounds of talks between farmer leaders and the government have failed to break the deadlock over these contentious laws.