Govt to set up fund for prominent Punjabi writers: CM

Patiala, Punjab: Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal today announced a dedicated fund for the welfare of litterateurs, folk singers and other personalities who have promoted Punjabi language and culture.

Addressing a gathering after inaugurating the seventh All-India Punjabi Conference at Punjabi University here, the Chief Minister said it would be ensured that the families of such prominent persons were taken care of. “The state government is duty-bound not only to preserve cultural heritage but to also look after the families of those who have dedicated their lives to promoting Punjabi language and culture,” he said.

The Chief Minister said the achievements of eminent Punjabis must be documented and a directory published so that they could be felicitated. He suggested a task force for the purpose.

Highlighting the importance of cultural monuments, the Chief Minister said the state government would be soon constructing ‘Jang-e-Azadi’ memorial at Kartarpur near Jalandhar at a cost of Rs 200 crore.

It would showcase the role of Punjabis in the country’s freedom struggle.

He said his government had raised memorials such as Virasat-e-Khalsa at Sri Anandpur Sahib, Chhota Ghallughara Shaheedi Memorial at Kahnuwan, Memorial of Wadda Ghallughara at Kup Rahiran and Fateh Burj at Chhapar Chiri to commemorate the supreme sacrifice of legendry Sikh warrior Baba Banda Singh Bahadur.

Earlier, Badal inaugurated an arts auditorium constructed at a cost of Rs 1 crore with the help of philanthropist SPS Oberoi and the Sarbat Da Bhala Charitable Trust. Vice Chancellor Dr Jaspal Singh said the Chief Minister had contributed immensely to preserving the state’s cultural heritage. The Chief Minister dedicated ‘Punjabi Pedia’ to the nation. He also released the English version of “Mahankosh” and a souvenir to mark the occasion. He announced a Rs 1 lakh grant for renowned folk singer Idu Sharif.

Source: The Tribune

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