Punjab’s radical group demands 80 percent jobs for locals


Chandigarh : Taking a cue from Maharashtra government’s recent directive to industries in the state to reserve 80 per cent of jobs for ‘locals’, radical group Dal Khalsa urged the Punjab government Thursday to implement similar measures.

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The Maharashtra government had defined ‘locals’ to mean anybody who has been staying in Maharashtra for at least 15 years.

The Dal Khalsa, however, stressed its drive against migrants was neither inspired by Raj Thackeray’s Maharashtra Navnirman Sena nor did it support his means and methods.

“Punjab should draft some laws for the reservation of jobs for the Punjabis and to restrict the entry of inter-state migrants, who presently constitute one-tenth of the state’s total population,” Dal Khalsa leader Kanwarpal Singh told media persons here.

Both in private and public industries, preference should be given to the local population and 80 percent of all jobs be earmarked for them, he said.

“The situation here is so grim that in the industrial sector and in the agriculture sector, the ratio of migrant labourers to locals is approximately 80:20 and 70:30,” Singh claimed.

He said a recent survey had found over 55 per cent of the agricultural labourers expressing their willingness to settle in Punjab permanently.

The Dal Khalsa leader said its drive against the influx of migrants in Punjab started Dec 14, 2003, when it held a public convention in Amritsar town to explain the real problem of migrant labour.