Shiromani Akali Dal rejects congressional government claim to end drug problem


Chandigarh (PTI): Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) on Monday rejected the Punjab government’s demand to end the drug threat in the state, calling it a “blatant lie and cover-up of failure.”

The party has challenged the Amarinder Singh government to release data on the number of drug addicts withdrawn from drugs over the past six weeks.

SAD General Secretary and MP Prem Singh Chandumajra said: “Before the elections, Congress claimed that 70% of Punjabis were drug addicts. That comes down to a huge figure of about two crore ten lakh [21 million] Punjabis on a population of around three crores [30 million]”.

Will Congress tell us how many of these drug addicts have been brought back to normal and respectable lives and where are those two crore ten lakh Punjabis reformed by the government, he asked.

The point is, no one in the government or the Congress Party has even said a single word on the drug problem in the first six weeks of their rule, he said.

Now, in the face of criticism from the SAD, they have concocted this lie, he added.

Chandumajra said the Amarinder government’s claim is nothing but boastfulness and an attempt to deflect criticism of its failures and inaction with misleading statements.

The SAD leader said that before the elections, Congress and the leaders of the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) slandered the Punjab with daily cries about the Punjab’s youth plagued by drugs.

“But once the elections are over, they forgot everything,” he said.

The Akali chief said the point was that Congress had largely exaggerated the extent of the drug problem in the state during the SAD-BJP government in the first place.

Now he is struggling to reconcile those allegations with the reality on the ground, he said.

So all they did was come up with some drastic and completely unfounded claims about breaking the back of the drug problem, he said.

“Why don’t they publish data on drug recoveries? They should share the details of these recoveries and compare them with the recoveries made during the SAD-BJP regime. Why don’t they even give figures on the number of young people released from drug addiction? Chandumajra said.

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