Punjab Witness Corruption-Free Administration, Revolution In Health And Education, Revenue Growth And War Against Anti Social Elements During Year After Historic Change : Harpal Singh Cheema

Chandigarh : Highlighting the one year achievements of the Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann led Punjab Government, Finance, Planning, Excise and Taxation Minister Advocate Harpal Singh Cheema on Friday said that the state has witnessed corruption free administration, revolution in health and education sector, revenue growth and war against anti social elements during the year after historic change.

He said that his departments Excise and Taxation have also made significant contribution in the state revenue by registering 45 percent increase in excise and 23 percent increase in GST as compared to financial year 2021-22.

Addressing the press conference here at Punjab Bhawan, Advocate Harpal Singh Cheema said that the Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann led government had implemented major guarantees like 26797 new jobs to youth, 500 Mohalla Clinics, 300 units per month free power and Rs 1 Crore Ex-gratia to martyrs’ families during this year.

He said that 117 schools of Eminence have been started in the state and two batches of school teachers have been already sent to Singapore for sharpening their professional teaching skills. He said the state government has also initiated process to regularize the services of 14000 employees.

“Our government has ensured the timely payments to farmers directly in their accounts during weat and paddy procurement besides clearing all dues of sugarcane farmers”, said advocate Cheema while adding that it was for the first time that serious efforts were made by any government to promote direct sowing of paddy and cultivation of Moong Dal in a bid to save air, water and soil of the state.

He said that these efforts have been resulted into 30 percent decrease in the stubble burning. He said that they have not only did efforts to save ground water but it was for the first time that a Punjab Chief Minister has taken firm stand on SYL issue whereas the past CMs were doing either lip service or politics on this issue.

Disclosing the steps taken to weed out corruption, mafia and Gundaraj, Advocate Cheema said that in the war against anti-social elements 567 arrests have been made by the Anti-Gangster Task Force and 380 were arrested under Anti-Corruption crusade.

He said that the Excise and Taxation department has also adopted a number of measures to destroy liquor mafia and tax evasion. He said that 6317 FIRs have been lodged by the Excise Department, 6114 arrests have been made, 1,48,693 litres of illicit liquor has been detected, 5,06,607 litres of lahan has been recovered and destroyed, 1,74,468 litres of PML/IMFL/Beer/Spirit have been seized, 308 working stills have been detected and destroyed during last 11 months.

He said that the department has implemented programs like Track and Trace to monitor the movement of liquor and stock inventories of the licensees up to the retail level besides launching a Excise QR Code Label Verification Citizen App to ensure that no in-genuine, counterfeit or non-duty paid liquor could be sold.

He said that these initiatives and enforcement activities have not only helped in stopping loss to exchequer but also averted any tragedy like hooch tragedy happened in Tarntaran district in 2020.

He further added that the Data Mining Wing and Tax Intelligence Unit of Taxation department has also created a strong check on tax evasion and bogus billing. He said that collection of enforcement wings increased from Rs. 147.89 crore upto February, 2022 to Rs. 173.27 crore upto February, 2023 registering 17.2 growth over the previous financial year.

He said that the Taxation department has also undertaken initiatives to help good taxpayers, like 24X7 ‘Chatbot’ for answering the queries related to GST via WhatsApp number ‘9160500033’ and facilitating 16 registered persons during PPIS 2023 for good tax compliance.

Advocate Cheema said that the intentions of the current government of using public money and property for public use only were clear, may it be implementing single pension for MLA instead of the earlier provision of permitting multiple pensions for every tenure, launching campaign to take possession of illegally encroached more than 9000 acres of government land.

He said that the live streaming of the Punjab Assembly session has been ensured so that the people of the state could witness the performance of their leaders in the house. He said that these efforts to provide a clean and transparent government have also attracted investment to the tune of more than Rs 40,000 crore in the state.



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