Ludhiana, May 14, 2018 (Yes Punjab News)
Veteran Punjab Journalist KS Chawla has questioned Capt Amarinder Government’s generosity about ‘Wasteful Expenditure on Security’.
In a terse and telling open letter written to the Chief Minister, Chawla, while reminding Amarinder of the financial crunch the state was passing through, has asked him to curtail the security of top Akali leadership besides pruning the security of retired and serving officers.
YesPunjab.com is publishing the full text of the letter written by the veteran journalist for the benefit of our readers.’
TEXT OF LETTER
K S Chawla
64-B, Rajguru Nagar,
Ludhiana, May 11, 2018
My Dear Captain Amarinder Singh Ji,
Sat Siri Akal
I like to draw your attention towards a four series report in The Punjabi Tribune written by Devinder Pal Singh a staffer of the newspaper.
He has highlighted the huge security provided to the political leaders, religious and spiritual leaders and the retired police officers of Punjab.
I am shocked to read the reports which show how generous your government is towards the political leaders who do not face threat to their lives and yet the state government is spending unlimited amount of money when the State is faced with a serious financial crisis.
The first installment of the report gives the details of the security provided to the political leaders including the Badal clan. According to the report former Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal has nine cars in his security including costly SUVs like Land Cruisers and his son Sukhbir Singh Badal has seven cars fleet in his security while Adesh Partap Singh Kairon and Bikram Singh Majithia have four cars each. They have no limit on the consumption of petrol and diesel.
Parkash Singh Badal is not very mobile after his party’s defeat in 2017 Vidhan Sabha elections. During his Chief Ministership, he had a fleet of 32 cars. I wonder why a popular Chief Minister should have such a huge fleet of vehicles for his security.
I may mention here that during the militancy period of more than ten years only two senior leaders faced murderous assalts namely Jathedar Jagdev Singh Talwandi and Jathedar Gurcharan Singh Tohra. Both escaped but both lost one loyalist each and one security guard. Talwandi lost SGPC member Harjinder Singh while Tohra lost MLA Rajla.
Attack on Tohra was led by Gurjant Singh Budhsinghwala who headed the Khalistan Liberation Force (KLF) outfit which was considered the most dreaded militant outfit. Bhai Shaminder Singh was another senior leader who was gunned down by the militants. Punjab has remained peaceful after the assassination of Beant Singh who was killed by a human bomb of the Babbar Khalsa International. Both senior and junior Badals do not need such a huge security setup to look after them. Badals are now one of the richest businessmen of Punjab and they can easily afford to have paid security. Otherwise the state government can scale down their security. Similarly Adesh Partap Kairon and Bikram Majithia also do not need any big size security.
There are nearly two dozen Hindu outfits known as Shiv Sena which have been provided security heavily. These outfits do not represent the majority community and most of these leaders are mischievous elements. They have raised these outfits in order to get security from the state. You have seen what happened at Phagwara due to the actions of these outfits.
Similarly. the Sikh high priests including the jathedar of Akal Takhat, Takhat Damdama Sahib Talwandi Sabo and President of the SGPC have also been provided security by the state government. They are the employees of the SGPC and the SGPC has huge income from the gurdwaras and can be provided vehicles and security.
Late Jathedar Tohra had told me that the Sikh priests were given salary only and one day he was passing through Bathinda when he saw Kirpal Singh former jathedar of the Akal Takhat standing at the bus stop waiting for the bus. He asked his driver to reverse the car and gave him lift to his destination. At that time, the high priests were only paid the salary and no vehicles. It was only after this incident, that he ordered that all the Sikh high priests be provided with a vehicle and fuel. Since the SGPC is providing them vehicles, it can easily give them security and fuel as the SGPC has huge income.
The self-styled President of All India Anti Terrorist Front Maninderjit Singh Bitta and his wife are also enjoying heavy security. This should also be curtailed.
Besides, the report has also mentioned a number of senior police officers who have retired but are having number of vehicles with free fuel. No doubt some of them were involved in fighting the militancy but there should be no wasteful expenditure on their security.
Some of the serving bureaucrats have also got police security and vehicles which are used by their wives. Why are they becoming a burden on the state exchequer? They must realize the financial situation of the state and their duty towards the people of Punjab.
You are fully aware of the financial crisis in Punjab and a very large number of widows are not getting their pensions, the serving government employees do not get their salaries on the first day of the month and social welfare schemes like free atta-dal and blue card holders are being denied the benefits because of the financial crunch.
I shall call upon you to take stock of the situation and save as much money as possible by curtailing the security of unwanted people and more policemen should be given to the police stations. There is no nigh patrolling in the urban and rural areas. You are the only hope of the people of Punjab at present.
My Salute to Devinder Pal.
With warm regards,
(K S Chawla)
Captain Amarinder Singh
Chief Minister of Punjab,
May 14, 2018