Bhagwant Mann on Punjab's basic necessities (Photo Credit: News Nation)
Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) Punjab President, Member of Parliament and Chief Ministerial Candidate Bhagwant Mann while expressing deep concern over the turbulent climate of state said that saving water, forest and land of Punjab was a matter of urgency. According to Mann, the Aam Aadmi Party government would take necessary steps to tackle this challenge which posed a threat to the survival of Punjab and future generations and would seek the invaluable support of the people, experts and social organizations, including NRI community, of the state for this mission.
In a statement issued from the party headquarters on Saturday, Bhagwant Mann said, "Punjab has been known for its pristine rivers, quality ground water and fertile land. But after independence, the people of Punjab risked their forests, land and water to meet the food needs of the starving country. As a result, the condition of Punjab's land, water and air are constantly deteriorating." He said that ruling parties in centre and Punjab are responsible for it not Punjab’s people and farmers. He added that the situation would not have been so dire if the leaders of the ruling parties Congress, Akali Dal Badal and Bhartiya Janata Party had far-sighted policies and sympathetic intentions for Punjab, and the condition of the natural water resources, forests and fertile lands of Punjab would not have been so bad. There were warnings that Punjab would become a desert if rainwater, river and groundwater were not preserved. But these rulers never cared the polluting climate or how to stop declining groundwater level. He said that Congress and Akali governments only focused on promoting mafia in the state instead of taking steps to save land and water of Punjab. The sand mafia and the land mafia are obvious examples of this, which caused great damage to water, forests and land. It is the result of corruption that wastewater is being diverted into the rivers and canals of Punjab which has led to increasing pollution of land, water and air.
Bhagwant Mann said that today the situation is that Punjab is which is known for its water is drying. Malwa, Doaba and Puadh constituencies of Punjab have been depleted of groundwater. Every year the ground water level goes down and the rainfall level has been decreasing since 1998. As a result, about 120 out of 147 blocks have been declared as the dark zone. He said that a large number of residential colonies had been set up in Punjab without any master plan, due to which the natural flow of water, rivers, canals and forests of the state had been wiped out. Only 6.12 per cent forest is left in Punjab, due to which the climate of Punjab is getting polluted day by day.
Bhagwant Mann alleged that the ruling Congress, Akali Dal Badal and BJP leaders in Punjab have looted and destroyed the natural resources like water, forest and land and filled their homes with wealth. Mann said that depletion of forests, land and water from Punjab was a wakeup call for Punjabis. Therefore, the Aam Aadmi Party government will work on a priority basis for the conservation of these natural resources so that Punjab becomes a prosperous state again.