Badal must accept enormity of drug menace and apologise: Punjab Congress

Chandigarh, June 29, 2015: The Punjab Congress today challenged the Chief Minister Mr Parkash Singh Badal on the monstrous proportions the drug menace had assumed in the state and counselled him to stop resorting to utter lies as the data with his government on this problem contradicted him.
The party put into the public domain the data procured on the drug menace in the state since 2007 procured by party’s RTI Cell chairman Dr Jasdeepak Singh. The party threw open challenge to Mr Badal calling upon him to refute the figures supplied by his own government or tender apology.
According to the latest information provided by state government, the number of patients who have approached the de-addiction centres is 6,22,381.
“It is established fact that only a small portion of people approach de-addiction centres. This figure can safely be multiplied by five to arrive at the rough estimate of the people addicted to drugs. Mr Badal should tell the people in the state as to how many people who approached these centres were addicted to heroin which is smuggled from Pakistan as he has been blaming smuggling from across the border”, said Dr Singh.
Ironically, the highest number 1,22,271 of drug addicts who approached the de-addiction centre have been reported from Bathinda, the Lok Sabha constituency represented by the Union Food and Supplies Minister Mrs Harsimrat Kaur Badal.
The party said the facts were too well known to Mr Badal and also the people who were patronising the drug trade that involved lot of money. It was for this reason that he kept mum when Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh raised this issue from the Akali Dal stage on June 19 at Anandpur Sahib. Entire information was available with the Union Home Minister which Mr Badal dare not challenge. Dr Jasdeepak Singh said this might be the reason that Mr Badal was facing humiliation repeatedly at the hands leaders from the alliance partner BJP repeatedly on this issue.
The Congress pointed out that it was Mr Rahul Gandhi who was the first to raise this alarming issue that had hit Mr Sukhbir Badal who described it as a political propaganda without any basis. The party asserted here was the data now supplied by his own government which pointed to the gravity of situation in the state. This data vindicated the concerns expressed by Mr Gandhi.
Monday, June 29, 2015