Chandigarh, March 14 (IANS) Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) President Sukhbir Singh Badal on Tuesday slammed the AAP government in Punjab for slashing the annual budgetary grant of the Patiala-based Punjabi University from Rs 200 crore to Rs 164 crore.
The AAP "drama party" is now trying to defuse the "outrage" against its decision by making yet another "false" promise to revise the allocation, he said in a statement.
Badal was reacting to media reports, which quoted the Punjabi University Vice-Chancellor as saying that the varsity is facing a "dark future" and demanded that the budgetary grant should be over Rs 300 crore. "The university is already under a debt of Rs 150 crore and is not in a position to pay salaries on time," Vice-Chancellor Professor Arvind has said.
No end to exam scams in AAP regime. Now in Punjab State Teacher Eligibility Test exam 60% of answers already highlighted on the question paper. Exam should be scrapped & conducted under independent supervision. CM @BhagwantMann must tell why no action taken till now in any scam. pic.twitter.com/395aCal44n— Sukhbir Singh Badal (@officeofssbadal) March 12, 2023
The SAD leader asked the government to accept the V-C's plea and increase the budget of the university from Rs 164 crore to Rs 360 crore.
Badal also rubbished as "another fake commitment" the promise of the government to revise the allocation. "True to his theatrical gimmicks, Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann had made similar tall promises to the staff and the students during one of his highly publicised visits to the campus last year, only to forget these same evening. The same script is being replayed now," said the Akali chief.
He further said that the "utterly shabby treatment meted out to an academic edifice which symbolised the commitment of Punjabi's to their language, culture and their religious legacy, including research in the sacred Gurbani texts, is just one more proof of how insensitive this government is to Punjab and Punjabi and to the heritage bequeathed to us by the great Guru Sahban".
"It is not just about finances. The fact is that this government is implementing an anti-Punjab, anti-Punjabi and anti-Sikh agenda set by its masters in Delhi is obnoxious. What they have been doing to the Punjabi varsity is only a symptom of that agenda. They have neglected all heritage sites and memorials and everything connected with our sacred legacy," Badal said.
"The utter neglect of the upkeep of heritage surroundings of the Sri Harmandar Sahib as well as of other places and memorials connected with our proud legacy is proof of this new agenda," he added.