Chandigarh: Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal on Monday said that the state government was committed to continuing free power to the farmers and the weaker sections of people in the state through its power subsidy.
Addressing people on the last day of his thanks-giving six-day tour of Lambi assembly seat on Monday, Badal said that there was hardly any reason to stop these subsidies.
He said that these subsidies had been given by the Shiromani Akali Dal-Bharatiya Janata Party alliance ever since they were voted to power in 2007. The alliance was voted back to power in 2012.
"Punjab being a welfare state, it was the duty of the state to provide these subsidies to the farmers and the weaker sections of the society. Moreover, agriculture is no longer a profitable venture and has already reached a point of saturation. So, being an agriculturally-dominant state, it was the duty of the state government to protect the interests of the farmers," Badal said during his visit to Lambi, 250 km from here.
He said that owing to the high inflationary trends prevalent in the country, the state government also feels its moral responsibility to give relief to the weaker sections of the society by providing them free power.
However, he said that the state government would not tolerate theft of power and water in the state, adding that strict action will be taken against those people who were caught indulging in such activities.