FEROZPUR: Punjab Congress Chief Amarinder Singh today launched 'Drug Free Punjab' campaign and accused the SAD ministers of patronising and controlling drug trade in the state.
He also said Congress will announce the names of party candidates six months ahead of 2017 Assembly polls in the state and "winnability" will be the only criterion for selection.
Reaffirming his promise to end drug problem in Punjab within four weeks of coming to power, Amarinder said, the main problem is 'synthetic drugs', known as 'chitta' in local parlance, which kills addicts within a few years.
The entire production and trade of synthetic drugs is being "patronised and controlled" by ministers of SAD, he alleged, adding "they have destroyed an entire generation and I promise I will not spare them for this crime."
Speaking to mediapersons after launching the 'Drug Free Punjab' campaign, the former Punjab chief minister said, in the Jaipur session of Congress it was decided that tickets shall be announced well in advance so that candidates get sufficient time for campaigning.
He said other parties like SAD announced candidates in advance which gave them extra time to work on poll strategy.
About fielding the sitting candidates, the state Congress chief said, each and every candidate's prospects will be assessed before nomination and "winnability, will be the only criterion".
Amarinder dismissed Aam Aadmi Party's challenge to Congress and claimed the lukewarm response Arvind Kejriwal got during his recent visit to Punjab made him cut short his visit.
About the Akalis, the state Congress chief said they may not "cross" the double figure mark and this would be their worst performance ever.
"The Akalis appear to be reconciled to the idea of defeat and have virtually given up. That is the reason why they have stopped giving any attention to governance," he remarked.
Wrestler Dalip Singh Rana, better known was 'the Great Khali', who was present at the occasion, administered an oath to youths that they will never touch or try drugs and also ensure that none of their friends or relatives did.
Rana told the youth to channelise their energy in creative and constructive pursuits like sports and said he will set up sports academies at different places in the state including Ferozepur.
Addressing the programme, Amarinder promised that once Congress forms government in Punjab, all pending and incomplete projects he had announced during his previous term, including Government Degree College, will be completed.