CHANDIGARH: Britain has offered technical assistance to Punjab in the enforcement of drug control measures launched by the Punjab government, while showing keen interest to scale up business engagements with the north Indian State.
The issues was discussed at a meeting between Punjab chief minister Capt Amarinder Singh and British Deputy High Commissioner to India Andrew Ayre, who invited Singh to UK to meet industrialists to attract investments to Punjab.
Amarinder Singh said his government had made significant advances in arresting the flow of drugs and the special task force (STF) was on the verge of cracking down on some big fish.
He reiterated that India needed a comprehensive national drug policy, which he has already raised with the central government.
It was decided that the chief of the STF on drugs would meet British enforcement experts to discuss cooperation in fighting Punjab’s drug menace, in view of drug smuggling both in and out of India.
The British envoy also offered Punjab assistance to train and modernising the police force as well as in handling cyber crime. Both both sides agreed to explore mutual cooperation over a wide range of subjects, including law and order, industrial development, agriculture, dairy farming, animal sex embryo transfer etc.
Amarinder Singh also suggested working together in the fields of urban management, civil services, transportation in big cities, among other areas.
The British envoy said his government was looking to raise Punjab to the highest category in terms of business cooperation, for which both sides could identify several important areas.
Noting that his government was in the process of eliminating red tapism and promoting an ease of doing business in the State, Amarinder directed his government to arrange a meeting with British officials to identify areas of mutual cooperation.
The two sides also discussed law and order and Punjab’s financial crisis, with the chief minister appraising the British envoy of his government’s work to tackle the same.
The task force set up by his government to deal with the gangs, that had mushroomed during the SAD rule had met with significant success, with several gangsters already in police custody, said Amarinder Singh.
On the fiscal crisis in the State, Singh said his government was making efforts to retrieve Punjab’s economy on the growth track. He said he had received excellent response from both domestic and foreign industries who were keen to invest in Punjab.
Elaborating on the financial mess, Amarinder Singh said his government would soon come out with a white paper to highlight the situation.
Pointing out that there were nine million unemployed youth in Punjab, CM Amarinder Singh said his government was looking for ways to RESCUE THE State from this decade-old crisis.
He also sought UK’s support in promoting modern agricultural practices, dairy farming and sex embryo transfer to check the uncontrolled birth of male calves which are seen to destroy crops in farms.