Shimla, June 28: Former Chief Minister and Leader of Opposition Prem Kumar Dhumal on Tuesday attacked the Congress government in the state for promoting liquor mafia in the state. Dhumal, who was here for Parivartan yatra of BJP in Shahpur Assembly constituency here, said that Himachal Pradesh Breweries Ltd. (HPBL) formed by the state government had become another source of corruption. The HPBL has been formed just to give benefit to a few people at the cost of state exchequer, Dhumal alleged. The way the liquor was being distributed through the HPBL has already brought to the fore the favours being extended to a few liquor suppliers and mafia from Punjab.
“We also suspect that low quality or fake liquor was making its way into the state that may compromise the health of the people. The tourists coming to the state are alleging that they are being sold limited brands of liquor at high prices in Himachal. All this was happening after the liquor trade has been controlled by those in power in the state”, Dhumal alleged. Dhumal said it was for the first time the state government in Himachal had got involved directly in liquor trade.
The BJP had opposed the involvement of state government directly in liquor trade even in the Assembly. The trade of the small contractors and wholesale contractors has been destroyed by the state government. Dhumal also attacked the state government for rising Non Performing Assets (NPA) of the Kangra Central Cooperative (KCC) bank. He said that KCC bank was one of the most successful cooperative banks of the country. However, during the last four years the financial health of the bank had deteriorated due to political interference by the ruling party politicians.
It was alarming that in the last one financial year the NPA of the KCC bank has risen by Rs 140 crores. The KCC bank management has already declared that its NPA had gone beyond 15 per cent that was a serious threat to small investors of the bank. Some of the bank directors have also agitated against the wrong loans being extended by the management, which was a serious matter, Dhumal alleged.
Dhumal also addressed the BJP workers in Shahpur Assembly constituency that is represented by the party MLA and former minister, Sarween Chaudhary. Sarween Chaudhary put up a show of strength. Addressing party workers, Dhumal demanded ouster of the Congress government on charges of corruption.
Source Tribune India