Tipped to return to power after the 2017 polls in Punjab , the Punjab Congress president Captain Amarinder Singh has embarked upon his ambitious ‘Kisan Yatra’ roadshow with the promise to address farmers’ problems in the state and a vow to “punish the Badals for pushing them to suicide”. The yatra aims to woo the farming community to back the Congress in its bid to return to power by ousting the SAD – BJP combine.
The roadshow was flagged off by the widows of nine farmers who had committed suicide in Punjab in recent past following their inability to pay off their debts. In some cases, the women had lost both, their husband and son, to mounting debt. Blaming the Badal government for what he called failure to save the farmers from such pitiable existence, Amarinder assured the widows that “we will not forgive them for pushing you to such a state.”
The state Congress president reassured the widows that he would immediately waive off all farm debts, once his party was back in power. He reiterated his commitment to resolving the problems of the farm families, who he described as Punjab’s engine of growth and progress through the years.
Among the widows who met Amarinder before the roadshow launch was Rajomajra’s Harbans Kaur, whose husband Sohan Singh committed suicide just 22 days back over a debt of Rs 4 lakh. What has aggravated her woes is the fact that the government, instead of helping her out of her suffering, has now gone and put up an electrical tower in the middle of her 3 bighas of land, rendering it completely useless.
This, said Amarinder, was a typical example of the Badal government’s insensitive and uncaring attitude towards farmer families. Amarinder said if his party was elected, it would take immediate steps to alleviate the sufferings of the farmers. He said he has already promised to waive off the debts of the farmers and assured them of all possible support by the Congress in their fight against the anti-farmer policies of the Badal government.