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Amarinder Singh dubs PM's remarks on nukes 'highly irresponsible'


Jalandhar, Apr 22: Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh on Monday termed as "highly irresponsible" the remarks of Prime Minister Narendra Modi on nuclear arsenal, saying the statement was made with an eye on the polls.

He appealed to the people to support the Congress' 'jung' (war) to protect the country, which the BJP-led government at the Centre has plunged into a state of "ruin and devastation". Modi, at an election rally in Rajasthan's Barmer, on Sunday said India is no more afraid of nuclear threats of Pakistan.

Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh

"Otherwise, Pakistan used to give nuclear threats. What do we have? Have we kept it for 'Diwali'? (Warna aay din nuclear button hai, ye kehte the. Hamare paas kya hai? Ye Diwali ke liye rakha hai kya)," the Prime Minister had said.

Singh said, "The Prime Minister's threat to trigger a nuclear war, clearly as a tool to be re-elected, was highly irresponsible." He was accompanying Congress' candidate from Jalandhar parliamentary seat Santokh Singh Chaudhary during filing of the latter's nomination papers here.

"This is a jung (war) for the future of the nation. We are fighting a party that made tall promises but failed to deliver on even a single one of them," the Chief Minister said, addressing a public meeting.

He lashed out at the BJP for "ruining" the country with its "anti-people" policies, like demonetisation and the GST. Pointing out that unemployment rate was at an "all-time high", Singh ridiculed Modi's promise of 'achche din' (good days), saying "acche din us din aange jis din enna da bhog payega" (good days will come only when their rule is brought to an end).

"People are sick and tired of their 'jumlas' and lies," said the Chief Minister, adding that people want jobs, industry etc. "The people of India will overthrow the Modi government, which has spent the last five years misleading and lying to them," he said. Flaying the Prime Minister for his "blatant and shameful politicisation" of the armed forces, Singh said the Army and the paramilitary forces are not Modi's "personal property" and any government of the day would have done what he did in the wake of the Pulwama attack.

"Every day, the Army and paramilitary personnel are dying in the line of duty, and yet the Prime Minister has the audacity to take credit for their actions," he added. Singh came down heavily on the BJP for fielding Sadhvi Pragya Singh Thakur from the Bhopal Lok Sabha seat, who has been openly going around making "divisive and hate" speeches and "insulting" the men in uniform.

"Such people are deliberately being given tickets by the BJP to divide the people of India," he said, asserting that the people would not allow the ruling party to "destroy" the country's peaceful fabric to promote its "petty political interests".

The government's job is to ensure the welfare of the people, not divide them. It must understand and work towards mitigating their problems, Singh said. The Congress in Punjab, he said, was working for the betterment of the people and for upliftment of all sections of the society.

He cited the examples of farm loan waiver for 10.25 lakh marginal and small farmers, as well as landless labourers, and the facilitation of youth to get employment or self-employment as part of his government's flagship 'Ghar Ghar Rozgar aur Karobar' scheme.

Unfortunately, the government cannot give jobs to everyone and was trying, therefore, to get more and more industry and private enterprise into the state for the creation of employment opportunities, Singh said. He said the establishment of an industrial circle in Jalandhar will bring new industries and promote further industrial development in the region.


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