Chandigarh, July 17
The Punjab government is reviewing the provision of extension of retirement age for two years, over and above the age of 58.
This was disclosed here on Monday by Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh during a media interaction after casting his vote for the presidential election at the Vidhan Sabha.
The government, he said, was mulling a policy change to fix 58 as retirement age to generate more employment opportunities for the state’s youth but the issue was still under discussion. The matter was being reviewed and a policy decision would be taken only after detailed analysis of the implications of any change with regard to the existing policy, he added.
To a question on the SYL issue, the Chief Minister said the state had been engaged in fruitful talks with the Centre to find an early and amicable solution to the issue. The state government, he said, had requested the Ministry of Water Resources, GoI, to assess the existing quantum of river water before the issue is finally adjudicated upon. He denied having discussed the SYL with the prime minister, saying no talks had yet been convened on the issue.
Responding to a question on delay in repayment of crop loans by the farmers in the wake of debt waiver announced by his government, the Chief Minister said that the government was already in the process of settlement with banks. He pointed out that Finance Minister Manpreet Badal had said the waiver scheme would be implemented by the government within a week.
Capt Amarinder said the final report on debt waiver by the expert committee headed by Dr. T Haq was awaited to enable the government to take a holistic view of the problem and find ways and means to implement farm debt waiver in right earnest.
On the possibility of imposition of any new taxes, Capt Amarinder clarified that the state government was trying to mobilize additional financial resources to narrow the widening budget deficit and the finance minister was working in this direction.
Asked to comment on the possible candidature of PPCC President Sunil Jakhar from Gurdaspur Parliamentary seat, which was vacated due to the demise of BJP MP Vinod Khanna, the Chief Minister said there had been no discussion on Jakhar’s name for nomination so far.
The Chief Minister was accompanied by his Media Advisor Raveen Thukral.