URUKASHETRA, India: The Punjab Chief Minister, Surjit Singh Barnala, said that Sikhs in Haryana were feeling safe after Mr. Bansi Lal replaced Mr. Bhajan Lal. Without mentioning Bhajan Lal by name, Sunjit Singh said that Sikhs living in Haryana and those travelling on G.T. Road had certain difficulties earlier but now the situation is normal. Addressing a public meeting after laying a foundation stone of Guru Teg Bahadur Public School, he said that so called dispute between Punjab and Haryana was no more than what two brothers, who have set up their separate homes, experience. Such things should not be allowed to disturb the traditional harmony between the people of two states. Referring to the speech by the Speaker of Haryana, Tara Singh, the Punjab Chief Minister said that Punjab has never denied river water to Haryana but we are asking for our share as determined by law of the land. He said Haryana would be lucky to have new capital, which the Center has promised to build on its own account. The new capital would be in the center of the State and perhaps be better than Chandigarh in design and architecture.

Conceding that Chandigarh was not an ideal capital for Punjab, Surjit Singh said that city had become an emotional issue. The Punjab government’s fight against freedom fighters was to keep the country united. We are trying hard to normalize the situation because the killing of any person was a biggest sin.

Akali Dal and the government were greatly disturbed when earlier Hindus migrated from Punjab. Fortunately because of certain acts including better security, liberal grant of licenses and transfer of Hindu employee to safe places taken by us many migrants have come back to their homes, he said.

Article extracted from this publication >>  January 23, 1987