CHANDIGARH, July 16: In a major development aimed at political empowerment of youth and enhancing and strengthening their participation in decision making process, Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee president, Capt Amarinder Singh today announced that 35 of the 117 party tickets in 2017 assembly elections will be allotted to the youth.
He said, this had been suggested by the Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi. He also clarified that the youth representation will be based on their hardwork and contribution towards the party and not any kinship or relationship.
Addressing a function organised here to announce the formal merger of the Youth Organisation of India (YOI) and induction of about 100 workers of the Aam Aadmi Party into Congress, Capt Amarinder appealed to the youth to come forward and join the political process.
“I am aware of your expectations and aspirations and I want you not only to realise your own dreams but also be part of the entire decision making process at political and economic level”, he told a strong audience of over 1000 youth who had gathered here.
At the same time he told them that this was going to be his last election and his only aim was to see the smile back on the faces of all the Punjabis. “The future belongs to all of you and we in the Congress want your maximum participation in leadership and representation in the Punjab Vidhan Sabha”, he said, while appealing them to support his mission.
“I don’t need or seek 25 years, just give me five years to launch Punjab back on the path to prosperity and glory and bring back the smile on every Punjabis’ face”, he said amidst thundering applause from the youth, while referring to Sukhbir Badal, who has been seeking 25 years to rule Punjab. “God forbid, if that happens, imagine what will happen to Punjab as they have already devastated it beyond redemption in just nine years”, he warned.
Spelling out his vision for the empowerment of youth including political, economic and financial, he said, besides allotting 35 party tickets to them, the Congress government will ensure “one job to each family”. He said, this will include jobs in both government and private sectors, besides developing and providing entrepreneurship skills and opportunities to them.
Capt Amarinder pointed out, the Badals had monopolised every trade and business with the result the wealth was concentrated within a single family and its close relatives and aides. He said, he will break this monopoly and ensure proper distribution of wealth.
For this, he said, the route permits will be distributed among the youth. They will also be provided soft loans for buying and operating buses. This way, he pointed out, more families will get benefitted instead of one single family. Similarly, he said, the cable distribution, sand mining and liquor trade will also have widespread participation of the youth.
Earlier Capt Amarinder announced the merger of the YOI into the Congress in presence of hundreds of its activists led by their president Rajwinder Singh Dhanola.
Speaking on the occasion, Dhanola said, the youth were looking towards Capt Amarinder for development and jobs. He said, the AAP volunteers who joined the Congress were dismayed and disgruntled with the AAP leadership who had come from outside like Delhi and Haryana.
At the same time about a 100 youth activists of the AAP also joined the party.
Capt Amarinder also inducted four Akali Sarpanches, two Block Samiti members and one councilor from Jalalabad, the assembly segment represented by Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal, into the party.
Prominent among those present on the occasion included Mr Laal Singh, Sukhjinder Randhawa, Joginder Singh Panjgrain, Joginder Singh Mann, Kikki Dhillon, Capt Sandeep Sandhu and others.