Days after the siege of the Ajnala police station by supporters of a pro-Khalistan preacher, the state government on Friday asked “enemies of Punjab” to fall in line or be destroyed.
The warning was delivered by Finance Minister Harpal Singh Cheema during his Budget speech in the state assembly.
In its first full budget, the Aam Aadmi Party government has allocated Rs 10,523 crore for maintaining law and order — up 11 per cent from the previous year.
“Some evil forces are always looking for opportunities to disturb peace and order in our border state,” Mr Cheema said, adding that such attempts in the past were thwarted by “our brave police forces”.
“I, on behalf of my government warn the enemies of Punjab to fall in line else our government shall destroy them from the root,” he said.
Punjab’s ruling AAP has been under flak from the opposition over the “deterioration” of law and order.
The minister did not directly refer to the incident in Ajnala near Amritsar on February 23, when radical priest Amritpal Singh’s supporters barged into a police station complex, forcing authorities to agree on the release of an arrested man.
Mr Cheema said the state government has set aside Rs 40 crore in the 2023-24 Budget to strengthen the security infrastructure in border districts. This includes CCTV cameras in areas close to the international border, lights and high-end police vehicles.
He said the state government is preparing its law enforcing agencies and police forces for all odds.
The counter-intelligence wing of the force is being fortified with the latest equipment and infrastructure, he said. An outlay of Rs 40 crore has been sanctioned for this.
He said Rs 64 crore will be spent on modernisation of the police force and Rs 30 crore on combating cybercrime in the coming year.
Mr Cheema said the Anti-Gangster Task Force had arrested 567 criminals and killed five gangsters, busted 156 modules, and seized 563 weapons and 125 vehicles till February-end.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)
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