No plans for law to erase British Raj remnants: Captain Amarinder Singh

Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh on Saturday said his government is not planning any legislation on “historical memory”, as claimed by state Finance Minister Manpreet Badal earlier this week.

Amarinder, who was in Mohali for a government event, denied his government was planning to bring in a Spain-like ‘Historical Memory Law’ to erase all remnants of the British Raj in Punjab. He was responding to questions on the law.

“As a historian myself, I do not believe in wiping out history but in learning from it,” he said. “By changing the name of Akbar Road, India could not wipe out the existence of (Mughal) Emperor Akbar.”

The Chief Minister said, “This could be Manpreet’s personal opinion, but I would look into any such legislation as and when it is formally brought to my notice. At the moment, it is in realm of media reporting only.”

The Congress manifesto had promised that such a law would be brought in. Badal was the author of the party’s poll manifesto, and it was finalised in consultation with former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and cleared by party president Sonia Gandhi.

Badal, who had told The Indian Express earlier this week that the drafting of the legislation was in the works and it would be presented in the Assembly during the monsoon session, remained unavailable for a comment despite several attempts to reach him.

Amarinder said: “History can neither be changed nor rewritten. It is a part of India’s past, from which we have already learnt our lessons and moved forward. I am personally not in favour of tampering with history, be it good or bad.”

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