Bhopal: Leader of Opposition in Madhya Pradesh Assembly Ajay Singh today lashed out at chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan and held the State BJP government responsible for the plight of farmers, widespread malnutrition, rising graph of crime against women and the girl child, poor response to the Global investors’ Summit, massive illegal sand mining in the Narmada river with the patronage of BJP leaders, rampant corruption and the massive VYAPAM scam that has played havoc with the lives of the young generation.
The Opposition leader was participating in the discussion on the vote of thanks for the Governor’s address. Ajay Singh said that for four consecutive years, Madhya Pradesh has been receiving the Krishi Karman Award and the growth rate in the agriculture sector is being projected as 20 per cent but this is not visible on the ground. Since the farmers were not getting on time loans at zero percent interest as promised by the government, about 40 per cent agriculturists have been forced to seek loans at a higher rate of 14 per cent and almost 40 per cent of these farmers have become defaulters. The Government wants to make agriculture a profitable business but the paradox is that in this soybean State, not a single solvent extraction plant is working at present, Singh told the House adding maximum number of farmers have committed suicide in Madhya Pradesh in last few years.
Singh drew the legislators’ attention towards the manutrition crisis. Citing from a latest report of the National Crime Records Bureau, he said that Madhya Pradesh ranks fifth in terms of crime against girls and first when it comes rape and molestation of women.
The Opposition leader took a dig against the Government on the dismal outcome of the much hyped event -the Global investors’ Summit – and questioned the logic behind organising this event. Pointing towards the Rs. 5, 06, 200 crore worth of MoUs signed under this Summit, he said that only Rs. 2600 crore worth of these MoUs have been translated on the ground.
Singh also told the House that Union Minister for Steel Narendra Singh Tomar had promised an investment of Rs. 6000 crore by NALCO for bauxite, HCL was to invest Rs. 100 crore in the solar energy sector, there was an investment proposal of Rs. 250 crore for a manganese plant, and Rs. 1000 crore for diamond mining in Tikamgarh district but none of these have taken off. The Minister for Chemicals also had announced a Rs. 1 lakh crore Petro Investment Region and a Petro Chemical Complex linked with Bina Refinery but nothing has happened on this front.
Singh expressed concern on growing unemployment in the State. There was 1.8 per cent unemployment in 2012-13; 2 per cent in 2013-14; and it rose to 3 per cent on 2015-16, he added.
Singh accused top BJP leaders of patronising the sand mafia. He said “perhaps the Chief minister is not aware that his nephew’s mining lease is without the mandatory environment clearance”. From where he is loading his dumpers, he pointedly asked. He said that the chief minister should tell the House how many dumpers were seized and how many of these have been released after ha had given instructions to catch those dumpers that were illegally transporting sand. Singh urged the chief minister to stop illegal sand mining and to protect the sanctity of the Narmada river.
Singh said that the VYAPAM scam has played havoc with the lives of the youth . The questions raised by the Supreme Court in this matter show that even the apex court is now aware that there has been a big scam linked with State Public Service Commission and the recruitment of patwaris.
The leader of Opposition said that the Chief Minister talks of zero tolerance but even today 163 persons have not been prosecuted and the Government is refusing to grant permission to prosecute 200 corrupt officers.
Chief Minister replies
Replying to the debate, the Chief Minister said that the baseless allegations hurled at him and those from his family regarding the Vyapam or the recruitment scam revolving around the State Professional Examination Board have been extremely distressing.
During the previous Congress regime admissions were granted or people were given jobs on instructions given on small slips and the job industry was flourishing in the State.
Chouhan gave credit to his government for detecting huge irregularities and putting in place a transparent recruitment process. On the Vyapam scam, the chief minister said that he would quit politics if there is even an iota of evidence about his involvement.
The chief minister denounced those who were defaming and, harassing his family and were bent upon making their life miserable.