Expand scheme to include Punjab terror victims: Amarinder asks

Chandigarh, Nov 26 (PTI) Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh has written to Prime Minister Narendra Modi, urging him to expand the period covered by a central government scheme for victims of terrorism and communal violence to include the years of militancy in the state.

Singh, in his letter, said the guidelines for the Central Scheme for Assistance to Victims of Terrorism and Communal Violence be revised to make it effective from August 1, 1982.

He said Punjab faced unprecedented terrorism between 1982 and 1995. More than 10,000 deaths were recorded during this period, 908 persons were injured, and 17,420 families had to migrate to other areas, an official release issued today said.

The guidelines for the central government scheme was revised in March this year, which were to be effective from the date of their approval by the Union Cabinet – August 24, 2016.

Currently, the scheme is effective from April 1, 2008.

The release quoted an official spokesperson as saying that the Punjab government in August 2006 requested the Union home ministry for a Rs 781-crore package for the victims of terrorism in the state, but it did not receive any response.

In March 2009, then Punjab chief minister Parkash Singh Badal wrote to then prime minister Manmohan Singh, saying that the central scheme should be made effective from 1982.

“Even several reminders at the level of Financial Commissioner Revenue in 2011 did not elicit any response, prompting Amarinder Singh to again take up the issue with the Centre,” the spokesperson was quoted in the release as saying.

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