Punjab criticises Railway budget

Written by: Pti
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Chandigarh, Feb 25 (PTI) Punjab Deputy Chief MinisterSukhbir Singh Badal today lashed out at the Congress-led UPAgovernment for ignoring the state in the Railway budget whichwas presented by Union Railway Minister Mamata Benerjee today.

Talking to media persons here, Badal said that whilepresenting the Railway budget Benerjee should have known thatshe was representing the whole country and not just WestBengal or Rae Bareli.

"If we go by the proposals of the Railway budget(presented) today, it seems that Punjab does not exist on themap of India, as she has not allocated a single penny, train,a railway track for the granary of the country that is feedingthe whole nation," he said.

The deputy chief minister also lashed out at the state''sCongress MPs for their failure to protect the interest ofPunjab in the rail budget.

He claimed that SAD MP Harsimrat Kaur Badal and BJP MPNavjot Singh Sidhu had written numerous letters to the UnionRailway Minister demanding a number of projects for thebenefit of people of the state but they were "completelyignored".

"(They wrote letters demanding) introduction of Shatabadibetween Bathinda-Mansa-New Delhi, Chandigarh-Amritsar Expresstrain, up-gradation of Amritsar, Ludhiana and Bathinda railwaystations, extension of Rail freight corridor upto Amritsar,allocation of additional bogeys to Punjab to clear the stockof wheat and rice rotting in Punjab godowns and taking it toother states, additional bogeys for transportation offertilisers from Kandla port to Punjab but the state has beenfully ignored," he said.

Badal said that he along with Chief Minister PrakashSingh Badal would soon call on Prime Minister Manmohan Singhto lodge a strong protest over the "step motherly treatment"meted out to Punjab in the Railway Budget.

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