Chandigarh, June 29: Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh on Monday hoped that in view of the current Covid-19 situation across the state, there would be no further lockdown and appealed the people to strictly adhere to the safety protocols and restrictions to save themselves, their families and the state.

While interacting with media persons, the Chief Minister said that the State has made elaborate arrangements to combat any emergent situation in near future. Sharing the inputs regarding COVID-19 till June 28, the Chief Minister said that there were 5216 confirmed corona cases, of which 133 deaths had been reported. He said as many as 23 patients were in High Dependency Unit (HDU) and seven critically ill-patients on ventilators. He also informed that the COVID testing capacity would be enhanced to 20,000 per day by July end with four new testing labs, which was at present around 10,000 per day.

Pointing out further, Captain Amarinder said that the state had adequate essential equipment to manage any further spread of the pandemic, which it had been largely able to control so far and he didn’t wish the stocks to be pulled out of storage for use as his entire focus was on saving lives. Appreciating the indomitable spirit of Punjabis, Captain Amarinder called upon them to keep restraint in this hour of crisis amid corona virus in the larger public interests. The Chief Minister further said that he was really perturbed, when he go through the daily reports of people challaned for violating the health safety measures and cautioned them to abide by the precautionary health guidelines not only to ensure their own safety but of the entire state too. He also advised the people not to be callous and misconstrue the symptoms of Corona Virus with common flu, cold, cough, body ache and fever due to change of season rather they should immediately seek advice from the doctor to have timely treatment.

Referring to another question, the Chief Minister said that in the first stage, 4248 beds in government hospitals had been set aside, with another 2014 now being added, while the private hospitals had allocated 950 beds for Covid patients. The total number of isolation centres identified to accommodate a large number of cases if the crisis aggravates stands at 52 government and 195 private, he added.

Of the 554 ventilators available, the Chief Minister said that in addition to the equipment already handed over to hospitals and other frontline workers, the Health Department had stocks of 5.18 lakh N95 masks, 75.47 lakh lakh triple layer masks, 2.52 lakh PPE kits and 2223 oxygen cylinders.

Answering a query regarding lay off in private sector amid COVID-19, the Chief Minister said that the labour which had gone their home states are now returning to Punjab as they envision job potential in the state. He, however, said that the majority of industrial units in the state had resumed operations and would be soon operating at its optimum production capacity and contribute enormously towards the state’s revenue. Undoubtedly, the state had suffered a colossal loss of revenue of Rs. 33,000 crore due to corona crisis, the Chief Minister said that the Centre didn’t give a single penny out of Rs. 20 lakh crore package except Rs. 2200 crore as State’s share in GST, which was our legitimate right.

Asked to comment whether Punjab has entered the community transmission as the cases in country has crossed mark of five lakh cases with just 19,000 cases reported yesterday only, the Chief Minister further said that the COVID situation in Punjab was more or less under control as compared to the states like Maharashtra, Tamil Nadu and Delhi and hoped that people’s pro-active participation to tackle the Corona crisis would surely keep this unfortunate stage at bay.








Chandigarh, June 29: Blaming Akalis for backstabbing Punjabi farmers by not fully supporting the state Government against the anti-farmer ordinances recently issued by the Centre, Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh on Monday said that the SAD President and MP Sukhbir Singh Badal should listen to voice of his conscience rather securing the ministerial berth of his wife in the Union Cabinet and keeping his party ties intact with BJP.

Interacting with media persons here, the Chief Minister said that Shiromani Akali Dal had always been the votary of more rights to the states and their autonomy in the true spirit of federalism. He, however, said that it was compulsion of the State BJP not to oppose their party’s decision at Centre in this regard while on the contrary Akalis should have taken firm stand to save the state’s beleaguered peasantry by out-rightly rejecting these anti-farmer ordinances.

Answering another question, the Chief Minister these ordinances were an outcome of Shanta Kumar Committee, which recommended scrapping of the MSP regime besides disbanding the FCI. There would be no guarantee for MSP to continue in future as claimed by Sukhbir Badal, once these ordinances are enacted in the Parliament, he added.

Strongly advocating that there should be no politicking over such sensitive issues related to Punjab interests, Captain Amarinder Singh shared how he was summoned by his party high command during his first tenure as the chief minister after terminating the water agreements with neighbouring states to save Punjab’s water from being taken out via the proposed SYL canal. Captain Amarinder categorically said that he always preferred to safeguard the state’s interests rather his chair. He asked the Akalis that they should also demonstrate the same spirit at this critical juncture to safeguard the interests of farmers rather pursuing their petty political goals.

On the issue of ongoing probe by the SIT in the Behbal Kalan firing incident, the Chief Minister said that the investigation is still underway and none could be declared accused at this stage.

Responding to another question with regard to Amended draft of Electricity Act-2003 sent by Centre to Punjab, the Chief Minister said that this was another onslaught on the federal structure thereby infringing upon the rights of the states. He categorically said that it was the state’s sole prerogative to grant concessions to the particular section of consumers be it domestic, farmers, commercial or industrial and Centre could not dictate any terms in this behalf. He asserted that the Centre was deliberately undermining the States powers given by the Constitution.

On the issue of Cabinet reshuffle, Captain said that we were passing through a difficult phase of COVID-19 and all of his ministers were doing well especially the Health Minister Balbir Singh Sidhu, Medical Education & Research Minister O.P. Soni and Rural Development & Panchayats Minister Tript Rajinder Singh Bajwa in these trying circumstances of the COVID-19. He said that there was hardly any need of reshuffle at this critical juncture as the foremost priority was to win the battle against corona virus and the reshuffle, if needed, would be considered later on.

Asked to comment whether Navjot Singh Sidhu could be given any new responsibility, the Chief Minister quipped it is up to the party high command to take a final decision whether Sidhu is to be given any responsibility in state or Centre.

Referring to the Paksitan Government’s offer to reopen of the Kartarpur Corridor, the Chief Minister said that the State Government had no issues in this regard but a final call would be taken by the Government of India. He said in case Centre seeks any opinion from the State Government, he would certainly request it to open the Corridor with strict adherence to health protocol and social distancing amid COVID-19.

On the question of appointment of Vini Mahajan as the Chief Secretary, Captain Amarinder said that she had been appointed exclusively on her competence, ability and vast experience & expertise in administration both at state and centre besides maintaining continuity on this post for a longer period for effective implementation of state Government’s policies and programmes.

On another issue regarding her husband DGP Punjab Dinkar Gupta moving to Centre on deputation, who has already been empanelled in Centre as Director General of Police, the Chief Minister said that Gupta would also stay in Punjab as he had done commendable work in neutralising nearly 2500 gangsters besides busting several terrorist modules.

Responding to query regarding mafia-raaj, the Chief Minister categorically said that both the Civil and Police administration were pro-actively involved in checking the illegal sale of liquor and sand. He categorically said that anyone who intends to setup new business in cable or transport in Punjab are most welcome to end the cartelisation in such trades rather he couldn’t force anyone to shut the existing business. He also shared the list of several persons indulged in such unlawful activities and action against them was being taken.

Captain asserted that the Group of Ministers comprising Housing and Urban Development Minister Sukhbinder Singh Sarkaria was working out modalities to further tighten the noose on illicit liquor traders besides break the nexus between producers, wholesalers and retailers. The Group will soon submit its report.

Reacting to the statement of Akal Takht Jathedar Giani Harpreet Sing on the issue of Khalistan, the Chief Minister said that no one wants Khalistan even he doesn’t want it. Captain Amarinder questioned why the Sikhs running business almost in every state across the country and leading a prosperous life would demand Khalistan? He said that people like Pannu was spinning money by exploiting the religious sentiments, which was unfortunate. He categorically said that Pannu had neither any support base even in United States amongst Sikhs, which was reflective from his decision to postpone Referendum-2020 due to tepid response.

Referring to the issue of revival of State’s economy on the recommendations of Montek Singh Ahluwalia’s committee amid slowdown in wake of COVID-19, Captain Amarinder said that Ahluwalia had already submitted its preliminary report and the final report would be submitted in due course of time after taking into consideration the recommendations of six expert groups in different field constituted by him.

Asked to comment on the functioning of his Government with regard to observations made by Rajya Sabha Members Partap Singh Bajwa and Shamsher Singh Dullo, the Chief Minister categorically said that they should mind their own business rather making baseless stratements. He said the people of Punjab had given clear verdict in favour of Congress during last assembly elections, which is a testimony to people’s enormous trust and confidence in the policies and programmes of the State Government.

On the issue of fulfilment of promises made by his party during the run up to the Vidhan Sabah polls in 2017, the Chief Minister said that he had been personally reviewing the progress of each and every promise made with the people. He mentioned that nearly 50 promises, which didn’t have any financial implication, were implemented during the first cabinet meeting of his Government after assuming the office. Reiterating his commitment, Captain Amarinder said that all the promises would be implemented in the letter and spirit.

When asked about the delivery of smart phones, one of the major poll promises, the Chief Minister revealed that the Punjab Government had already placed an order with a mobile company LAVA, which conveyed that 50,000 mobiles were ready and the remaining would be supplied in July. He said though LAVA is an Indian company but still we will take a final decision after ascertaining the extent of Chinese involvement and the quantum of Indian and Chinese equity in the said company.


First woman Chief Secretary Punjab Smt. Vini Mahajan calls on the Governor Punjab and Administrator UT Chandigarh, Sh. V. P. Singh Badnore today on June 29, 2020 at Punjab Raj Bhawan, Chandigarh.


4000 vacancies of doctors & other staff to be filled by September 2020 to accomplish Mission Fateh: Balbir Singh Sidhu

Health Minister dedicates two newly constructed Mother & Child Healthcare Hospitals to people at Rajpura & Khanna

CT scan & ultrasound facilities to be provided in all government hospitals

Chandigarh, June 29:-Around 4000 posts of para medical staff including doctors would soon be filled by September, 2020 to accomplish 'Mission Fateh' war waged by the Chief Minister Capt. Amarinder Singh against COVID-19 in Punjab. It was disclosed by Health & Family Welfare and Labour Minister Mr. Balbir Singh Sidhu in press release.

Mr. Sidhu said that an agenda of 4000 posts would be tabled in the cabinet to fill the gap of shortage of skilled man power. He said that to ensure quality healthcare services to the people under Mission Fateh, two newly constructed 30 beded Mother and child care hospitals today dedicated to the people at Rajpura and Khanna. Equipped with the all modern facilities, these hospitals have been constructed at a cost of Rs. 6 crore and Rs. 9 crore respectively.

Mr. Sidhu said that Punjab Government under the leadership of Chief Minister Capt. Amarinder Singh had taken the first concrete step of lockdown/Curfew in country to save the people of Punjab from the deadly epidemic COVID-19 which had replicated by Union Government. Now under Mission Fateh to defeat Corona virus, the war is being fought on a large scale. He appealed to the people to take precautionary measures for the success of Mission Fateh and also educating others about wearing masks, washing hands, downloading COVA app and maintaining social distance.

Cabinet Minister further said that health services in Punjab would be modernized and computerized soon on the lines of banking system, besides 9 Trauma Centers were being setting up in Punjab. He said that in all the Govt. Hospitals, services of CT scan and ultra sound would also be commenced on the AIIMS and PGIMER rates in synergy with private players, which would further improve and strengthen the health services.

Mr. Sidhu said that our doctors have provided excellent services in fight against Corona virus and other diseases as Corona Warriors and now to overcome the shortage of doctors in government hospitals, recruitment process would be completed through Baba Farid Medical University by September 30, 2020.


Dr. Jyoti took over as member of Punjab State Child Rights Protection Commission

Expressed commitment to protect rights of children at any cost

Chandigarh, 29 June-Dr. Deepak Jyoti has assumed charge as non-official member of Punjab State Commission for Protection of Child Rights here today.

Expressing gratitude towards Chief Minister Capt. Amarinder Singh and MP Preneet Kaur for this assignment, Dr. Jyoti said that she would always be committed towards the protection of child rights and the trust conferred upon by the Chief Minister.

Vowing to fight against discrimination and abusing against children, Dr. Jyoti said that she would continue to fulfill her responsibility to curb social evils like child labor, deprivation of children from education, exploitation of children, trafficking and other anti-social activities against children. She said that when matter of such discrimination will come to her notice, she will send to the higher authorities so that the future of the concerned children could be saved by educating them and giving them a better life and space.

After assuming the charge of her office, Dr. Deepak Jyoti called on Punjab Social Security and Women & Child Development Minister Mrs. Aruna Chaudhary and expressed gratitude for the task. She said that she would accomplish the responsibility with full dedication and devotion entrusted her by the Punjab State Commission for Protection of Child Rights.