Punjab CM Amarinder Singh promises more govt jobs in coming months

Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh today handed over appointment letters to 25 of the 3,683 candidates recruited by power utilities, with the promise to generate more jobs in the coming months. A total of 1,800 recruits got their appointment letters today. There are vacancies in other departments too, and those would be filled up soon, the chief minister announced at the programme. The programme coincided with the first death anniversary of his mother Rajmatha Mohinder Kaur. Remembering his mother, Amarinder recalled her words exhorting him to do something for the farmers and the unemployed youth in the state. The chief minister said he had promised his mother that he would do everything in his power to alleviate the problems of the farmers and to end unemployment. Amarinder said as a chief minister, he has initiated various steps towards the fulfilment of his promises. He claimed that unfortunately, his government had inherited a massive debt burden, with a mega fiscal mess, which would take time to resolve. Yet, the chief minister said, the government was well on track toward the implementation of its farm debt waiver scheme, which would be completed by November this year. On the employment front, the chief minister pointed out that so far around 1.65 lakh youth had been provided jobs since his government took over. The government, he said, was focused on employability of youth in the higher and technical education institutions, and would continue to generate jobs in both the private and the public sectors. Congratulating the new recruits, who included assistant linemen, junior engineers, sub-station attendants and lower division clerks, the chief minister called upon them to dedicate themselves to the service of the state with total commitment. The remaining recruits will receive their appointment letters within a month, he said. Underlining his focus on industrial development, the chief minister stressed the need to promote investment in industry and service sector, pointing to various initiatives undertaken by his government, including power subsidy, to boost industry in the state. These measures were already yielding results as was evident from the fact that around 100 industrial units that had been closed down have now revived, he added. The state government was providing annual power subsidy of Rs 1440 crore to the industry, while the free power cost for agriculture was approximately Rs 6,000 crore per year, said the chief minister, adding that power subsidy was also being provided to SC, BC, BPL and freedom fighters. The chief minister reiterated the need to educate farmers to conserve water and use energy efficient motors in view of the declining water table. Lauding the Punjab State Power Corporation Limited (PSPCL) for successfully reducing T and D losses to become one of the best performing power utilities in the country, the chief minister made it clear that he expected the power corporation to have zero tolerance to power theft. Responding to concerns expressed by the industry regarding reliability and quality of power supply, the chief minister asked the PSPCL to focus on providing uninterrupted power supply. The chief minister hailed PSPCLs efforts to speed up power connections, pointing out that 4 lakh new connections were released last year to domestic, non-residential and industrial consumers. In future, all domestic new connections will be released within 72 hours of application, he announced.