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Row between Centre, Punjab govt escalates as AAP regime withdraws support to Viksit Bharat Sankalp Yatra

This comes after the tableau of Punjab was not selected for the Republic Day parade. The state govt has said that the tableau will now be taken to every village across the state after January 26.

BhagwantMannCHANDIGARH: A major confrontation is on the cards between the AAP-led Punjab government and the BJP-led Union government as the former withdrew support to the 40-day old Viksit Bharat Sankalp Yatra across the state. This comes after the tableau of Punjab was not selected for the Republic Day parade. The state government has said that the tableau will now be taken to every village across the state after January 26.

“Earlier, we had issued the guidelines related to the implementation of the yatra in the state which now stands withdrawn,” said an official. The local bodies department has also issued a similar letter to all the municipalities across the state.

Sources said the yatra in the state has been going on for the last 40 days and, as per data with the central government, covered 8706 gram panchayats out of the total 13,259 gram panchayats in the state, with 14.98 lakh people participating. 777 gram panchayats were covered in Gurdaspur, followed by 731 in Gurdaspur, 657 in Ludhiana and 616 in Amritsar, as two districts had 100 per cent coverage, 5 districts 80 to 99 per cent coverage and 9 districts 60 to 80 per cent coverage.

Sources said that a meeting was held today of officials of the central government as the Food Corporation of India (FCI) General Manager of Punjab is the nodal officer and it was decided that field officials of central government agencies and institutions such as FCI, AIIMS, PGI, ECH and banks will now manage and coordinate the yatra.

Talking to The New Indian Express, Punjab BJP President Sunil Jakhar said, “It is an extremely petty step taken by the AAP-led Punjab government in order to cover up their own failures as the health system has collapsed in the state. So many people were getting their health check-ups done whereever the yatra reached.”

The Union government has not released Rs 402.48 crore under the National Health Mission (NHM) to Punjab due to the state government’s non-compliance regarding branding guidelines for Ayushman Bharat-Health and Wellness Centres, as it has branded them as Aam Aadmi Clinic (AAC) instead of Ayushman Bharat-Health and Wellness Centre and has also not followed the colour scheme.

On Tuesday, Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann announced that the tableau of Punjab on Republic Day which was rejected by the Centre will be paraded across the state after January 26. He had said the tableau depicts the contributions of freedom fighters like Bhagat Singh, Udham Singh, and Lala Lajpat Rai.

In December last year, Mann had hit out at the central government over the non-inclusion of the state’s tableau for the Republic Day parade, alleging the Centre has discriminated against the state. The Centre had rejected the accusation.

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