Chandigarh, Oct 21 (IANS) Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh on Wednesday welcomed the farmer unions’ decision to allow movement of goods trains, saying it was in the interest of the state’s economy and its revival.
Thanking the farmer unions for heeding his appeal, the Chief Minister said the farmers had shown their love and concern for the people of Punjab with this move, as it will allow the state to get its much-needed coal supplies.
He pointed out that the people of Punjab had been facing a total power shutdown as a result of coal shortage due to the blockade, and the decision of the unions had come as a major relief to them.
Singh said in a statement here that farmer organisations, with this decision, had also ensured that the industry would not have to suffer anymore but would get back on the path to revival.
The ‘rail roko’ of the farmers had caused huge financial losses to the industry, thus compounding the crisis triggered by the Covid pandemic.
Further, said the Chief Minister, the easing of the blockade for goods trains will help the state replenish its critically low urea supplies, thus catering to the urgent need of the farming community for fertilisers.
The farmers had not let the state down, and he would personally ensure that his government never lets them down, said Amarinder Singh.
He reiterated his commitment to save their livelihood and lives, both of which were facing acute danger as a result of the Centre’s ‘black’ farm laws.
The Chief Minister, however, urged the unions to also lift the blockade on passenger trains, which were catering to tens of thousands of Punjabis every day, especially during festive times.
“The people of Punjab want to come back home to celebrate the festival season with their families,” he said, appealing to the farmers to allow the movement of passenger trains too in the interest of Punjabis.