Badal couple urges MPs to release MPLAD funds to battle coronavirus

Chandigarh, Mar 22 (PTI) Union minister Harsimrat Kaur Badal and SAD president Sukhbir Badal on Sunday urged all the MPs to release MPLAD funds needed by hospitals for purchase of medical equipment to gear up for the battle against coronavirus.

Kaur and her husband Sukhbir said all the hospitals in their respective Lok Sabha constituencies of Bathinda and Ferozepur could avail funds from them for this purpose.

In a joint statement here, Kaur, who is the minister for Food Processing, and Sukhbir said that as per various reports, there was a shortage of medical equipment and testing kits were needed in government hospitals.

They said the district administration could tie up with the hospitals and the money needed for the specialised equipment would be released by them from their MPLAD funds.

Both of them also appealed to all other parliamentarians in Punjab and across the country to do their bit to fight the pandemic by committing much-needed funds to government hospitals at the earliest.

'All other elected representatives and the general public should also assist in this task. We should initiate this relief effort immediately. We should be geared up for every eventuality,' they said.

Sukhbir said his party fully backs the steps being taken by the Centre and the Punjab government in fight against the coronavirus pandemic.

'We are human beings, Indians and Punjabis first and Akalis or Congressmen afterwards. Sikhism teaches us that we are all in it together. In Punjab, SAD offers its services to the chief minister in this fight,' he said.

'We will cooperate with whatever steps Prime Minister Narendra Modi announces for the country and Chief Minister Amarinder Singh for Punjab in this hour of shared challenge,' Badal said.

'This is the time to put politics on the back burner and stand united in humanity's fight against the new enemy (COVID-19),' he said.

He also issued directions to the SAD office-bearers and cadre in countries like Canada, Italy, the USA, UK, Spain, Germany and the Middle East to coordinate efforts to extend every possible help to any needy Punjabi settled abroad. PTI SUN VSD SNE SNE