A Dalit rights body, National Scheduled Castes Alliance (NSCA) on Monday said Charanjit Singh Channi as the first scheduled caste (SC) Chief Minister of Punjab can be a catalyst for change in state’s conditions.
Hailing the Congress decision to make Channi the new CM, NSCA president Paramjit Singh Kainth said scheduled caste CM was long overdue in Punjab.
“After 74 years of Independence and Punjab, the state with the highest SC population in India has finally been able to welcome a scheduled caste politician as the new Chief Minister of the state. Emotions are high and so are the expectations but more importantly, at this juncture, I convey my best wishes to the incoming CM in his journey. I hope he is able to knit together the fragmented social fabric of the state which has been suffering from incompetence and discrimination against the SCs and other backward groups,” Kainth said.
He said the NSCA had been calling for a scheduled caste CM for a long time and most evident during its 28-day sit-in protest at Sector 25, Chandigarh in January 2021. “Despite the various post-poll promises of deputy CM by various parties, what we really wanted was a CM of the SC community and this is exactly what the 32 per cent of the scheduled castes population in the state deserved,” Kainth added.
He said Channi hails from the land Sikh martyr Bhai Sangat Singh who belonged to the SC community had given his life to allow the 10th Sikh Guru, Gobind Singh, a safe passage in the Battle of Chamkaur.
“We hope that the new CM tries to emulate the heroes of the community and strive towards making the best decisions for the State of Punjab and the Scheduled Castes as well other marginalised communities,” the NSCA chief said.Internet Explorer Channel Network