Chandigarh, April 18: Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) Member of Parliament from Sangrur and Punjab Unit chief Bhagwant Mann has welcomed the decision of the Punjab and Haryana High Court for redeeming the honour of Shaheed Bakhshish Singh, an associate of Shaheed Kartar Singh Sarabha, after 72 long years, saying it was a tight slap on the faces of the Congress party and Akali Dal.
In a statement issued from the party headquarters in Chandigarh, Mann said that the court, in its landmark judgment, had redeemed the honour of the great martyr by allowing compensation of Rs 25 lac. for 33 acres of land reported to have been confiscated by then British Government, a rare instance of honour accorded to a martyr who fought against the tyranny of the alien dispensation.
Mann further said that the historic court order had not only unearthed the hollow claims of the preceding governments which had been laying tall claims in favour of the martyrs but did nothing on the ground when it came to redeeming their honour. The injustice meted out to the members of Bakhshish family for more than 33 long years under the suzerainty of was fit case of highhandedness on the part of the subsequent governments.
Mann further said that it was more disgraceful on the part of the dispensation heaping humiliation on the martyr Shaheed Bakhshish Singh’s family who fought a relentless battle against the injustice. He said that the 33 acres of land belonging to the martyr was priced at Rs 13000 after a lapse of 73 years in 1988 by the government was a disgrace to the martyr and his family. Mann said that had the preceding governments in the state and the centre been a tad serious, they won’t have to suffer ignominy for such a long time.
The subsequent government could had shown a gesture of visiting the families of martyrs after independence and allotted land to their families in lieu of the one confiscated by the Britishers so that the families would not have been left to suffer in silence for such a long time. The gesture would have saved them from the financial straits they had been subjected to all these years by allowing them special compensation.
Mann said that the government had played a cruel joke with the martyrs who fought for their country. Scoffing at the way the governments were indulging in perfunctory rituals of paying them homage by offering tributes to them on their anniversaries just earn some political brownie points. By giving them a pittance (Rs13000) as compensation, the dispensation had humiliated the martyrs. Welcoming the decision of the court, Mann said the for the Congress and SAD-BJP governments ruling the state for long time, the families would not have to shuttle between various courts to secure justice.
Mann demanded that the preceding governments should tender their unconditional apologies to the aggrieved families for denigrating the honour of the martyrs and humiliating their families. Mann further added that some of the martyrs of 1965, 1971 battles and others, whose families had been allotted land around the riverbeds had been fighting for justice for a pretty long time now.
The captain government should immediately intervene and secure them justice for them without further loss of time thus restoring their honour. He said that the Punjab government should take a cue from the Delhi government led by Arvind Kejriwal which delivers a cheque for Rs one crore at the homes of those from Army paramilitary or police force on attaining martyrdom.