Chandigarh. Referring to the letter of Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann, the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) has given a detailed account of the increased debt and increased revenue of the state to the Governor of Punjab. The Mann government of Punjab had written a letter to Governor Banwari Lal Purohit asking him to raise the issue of Rural Development Fund with the Bharatiya Janata Party government at the Centre, in response to which Purohit asked the Mann government about the increased debt on the state. On Tuesday, Bhagwant Mann wrote a letter to the Governor with all the details of the debt and revenue increase and once again asked him to act in the interest of Punjab and appeal to the Central Government to release the RDF.
Referring to the letter, AAP Punjab chief spokesperson Malvinder Singh Kang said that our government has inherited a loan of Rs 3 lakh crore from the previous Akali-BJP and Congress governments of Punjab. He said that this debt and their corruption are responsible for the current financial condition of the state. He said that to repay the interest on that loan, the Mann government took a loan of Rs 27,016 crore.
Kang said Rs 10,208 crore of new loans were spent on capital expenditure. But the most important are the bailout packages that the Mann government gave to PUNSUP, Punjab State Cooperative Agricultural Development Bank (PSCADB) and other departments. Kang said that all these departments are very important and were neglected by previous governments. This directly impacts the rural areas, middle and lower middle class of Punjab. He said all these departments were in deep trouble and the Mann government maintained them through bailout packages. Therefore, Rs 350 crore was given for Pansap, Rs 798 crore for PSCADB and Rs 845 crore for RDF.
Apart from these, the government has spent Rs 2,556 crore from 2017 to March 2022 to clear the dues of electricity subsidy and the dues of sugarcane farmers. Sinking fund investment of Rs 4000 crore was also made and about Rs 1000 crore was given to sugarcane farmers. Kang said that due to this, Punjab’s debt increased by Rs 48,530 crore and not Rs 50,000 crore as reported by the Governor. But it is noteworthy that the previous governments and their debts are also responsible for the new debt.