Hardeep Puri Slams ‘Highly Political Speech’ After Harsimrat Badal Brings Up Farmers’ Protest During AIIMS Event

Union Minister Hardeep Singh Puri, attending the inauguration of AIIMS Bathinda, criticised the ‘politicisation’ of the event, without directly naming Shiromani Akali Dal leader Harsimrat Kaur Badal. Puri expressed disappointment at what he termed as injecting “political frustration” into such occasions, stressing the apolitical nature of medical dedications.

“In this function that I attended virtually, I heard one particular person made a highly political speech. I don’t think an occasion like the dedication of a medical facility… They take an oath and they are totally committed to human life and they’re apolitical,” Puri remarked to news agency ANI.

He criticised the timing and platform for raising political demands, deeming it “unfortunate” and suggesting seasoned politicians should refrain from such actions. Puri highlighted government efforts in addressing farmer concerns, citing increases in Minimum Support Price (MSP) and benefits under PM Kisan Samman Yojana.

“The reference to politics in today’s programme was unfortunate. I thought seasoned politicians should resist the temptation of injecting their own political frustration into occasions like this,” he added, as quoted by ANI.

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Harsimrat Kaur Badal’s Remarks On Farmers’ Protest During AIIMS Event

During her speech on Sunday at the virtual inauguration of AIIMS Bathinda by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Shiromani Akali Dal leader Harsimrat Kaur Badal, the Lok Sabha MP from Bathinda, highlighted the concerns of protesting farmers. 

“I want to appeal with folded hands that our hard-working people of Punjab have made several sacrifices for the country. Even today, as our water table is going down, farmers are making a significant contribution to the country. Our 600 farmers were martyred a few years back for their demands. Now, several farmers have again come on the streets, and five lives have been lost. Punjab’s farmers and labourers are suffering losses, amid this economic blockade the state’s economy is suffering,”

She urged the Government and the Punjab governor to intervene to resolve the standoff with the protesting farmers. She said she was pained by the way farmers were met with a huge security deployment referring to the blockade along the Punjab-Haryana and Delhi borders.

She faced interruptions from some members of the audience who objected to her raising the farmers’ protest during the event, urging her to focus solely on health-related matters, PTI reported.

The remarks follow Prime Minister Modi inaugurated AIIMS facilities in Rajkot (Gujarat), Bathinda (Punjab), Raebareli (Uttar Pradesh), Kalyani (West Bengal), and Mangalagiri (Andhra Pradesh) during events held across multiple locations.

As for the farmers’ protest, talks between the government and protesting farmers have failed to reach a resolution, with the recent offer to buy five crops at MSP for five years being rejected by the farmers.