Chandigarh — Mr. Balwant Singh a former finance minister, on Wednesday ridiculed the announcement of the Prime Minister, Mr. Rajiv Gandhi, that the Thein dam project would be completed at the earliest and wondered how this could be possible with the size of Punjab’s annual plan for the next year having been slashed by 40 per cent.

Talking to newsmen, the Akali leader said against the State’s draft plan of Rs 730 crore, the Centre had approved an outlay of only Rs 440 crore.

“The Prime Minister has cut a cruel joke on the people of Punjab,” Mr. Balwant Singh said. According to him, with the meager allocations, the Thein project could not be executed even in two decades. Punjab had proposed an expenditure of Rs 72 crore on the project for the next financial year but this amount had now been drastically cut to Rs 34crore only.

Article extracted from this publication >>  April 12, 1985