Chandigarh, July 19, 2019 (Yes Punjab News)
Sukhpal Singh Khaira, Bholath MLA and President of Punjab Ekta Party (PEP) today warned that the whole Punjab would drown if rains continued for few more days and added that flooding of Bathinda city and similar situation in other cities of state is ‘politician made disaster’. He added that the pitiable water logged plight of Bathinda and other cities is a result of inapt futuristic planning by our leaders, failure to install storm sewers and rampant corruption in Local Bodies department
In a statement issued here Khaira said that greedy politicians had made hell of flourishing state of Punjab and they are least concerned about the plight of people marooned by floods caused by incessant rain. He held former Chief Minister Sh. Badal and present incumbent Capt Amarinder Singh equally responsible for unplanned growth of cities and towns of Punjab. He said that both of them were continuously in power for the last many decades.
Khaira said that it was shameful for political leaders like Finance Minister Manpreet Singh Badal and Union Food Minister Harsimrat Kaur Badal that people of Bathinda were forced to bear 6 – 8 feet deep water logging, as their belongings have been damaged. He said that the office of Inspector General, the residences of senior officers and court complex were flooded and there is no provision for drainage of water.
He said that political leaders of our times have not made futuristic planning of cities, no master plants are in place and no storm sewers are laid anywhere. He added that the natural flow of water has been obstructed by haphazard construction, the seasonal rivulets and Nullahs have been grabbed by land mafia led by political leaders. He stated that even village ponds have been grabbed by influential political people and rain water is now flooding the villages and destroying crops on large scale.
He said that Badal family had promised to make Bathinda a smart city, spent crores in the name of fighting water logging but end result is a complete disaster. He also blamed Harsimrat Kaur Badal and Manpreet Badal for not coming to the rescue of marooned people in their home town. He demanded 100 percent compensation for the damage of household of Bathidna residents. He feared break out of water borne diseases in Bathinda and other towns, if immediate steps were not taken.
Khaira said that corruption is also one of main reasons for lack of civic amenities in Punjab cities and villages. He questioned Punjab CM over his claims of spending thousands of crores in cities. He said normally only 30-40 percent of the development funds are being rightly used and the rest are being siphoned off by greedy politicians and bureaucrats sitting at helm of affairs. He rued that Capt Amarinder Singh had failed to curb illegal mining, land grabbing besides eliminating drug menace from Punjab.
He said that breech in the Ghaggar river near Moonak in Sangrur district is another example of poor maintenance of water bodies. He said that every year crops worth crores get damaged by floods but there is no permanent solution.
Khaira said that there was no system of disaster management in place in the state. Though a department existed but no staff is posted to tackle any calamity, despite repeated instances of such natural disasters.