Need to formulate new policy to leasing out Panchayat land in Punjab: Harpal Singh Cheema

…AAP delegation meets affected Dalit families of Gharachon village staging ‘dharnas’,  expresses solidarity

Bhawanigarh, (Sangrur), August 1

Senior Leader of Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) and Leader of Opposition Harpal Singh Cheema, while questioning the existing process leasing out Panchayat lands in Punjab, stressed the need for formulating a new policy to give direct benefits to landless farmers, and others from backward classes and dalit communities.

Harpal Singh Cheema, along with other leaders on Saturday visited the affected families protesting against the fake (Dummy) auction of panchayat land at Gharachon village here. Cheema alleged that the shabby game being played by the leaders of the ruling party to leverage it in their own interests and dividing the villagers into factions, thus destabilizing the social and communal harmony of the people.

Cheema criticized the divisive politics being played by local Congress MLA and Education Minister Vijay Inder Singla in the ongoing bidding process of panchayat land, saying he (Singla) as a Minister should refrain from such denigrating acts.

The LoP said the new policy on leasing out Panchayat lands in Punjab was the need of the hour. He added that under the existing policy, the Panchayat land is required to be reserved for landless or marginalized farmers of the respective villages and other backward classes, while 33 per cent of the share of Panchayat land reserved for Dalit families, adding the model be adopted to promote cooperative farming in the state.

Cheema flayed the detention of around 100 Dalit women and men by the police, adding that it was the outcome of the anti-Dalit mindset of Education Minister Vijay Inder Singla. He demanded that the process of fake auction of the land be nixed immediately, and renewed to ensure that the rights of the landless farmers were not compromised. He also demanded the dismissal of all cases registered against protesting members of the  community.

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