Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh on Friday announced the creation of Malerkotla, a new district in his state. It has been carved out of the state's only Muslim-majority town, 35 km from Sangrur district. Adjoining Amargarh and Ahmedgarh will also be part of Punjab's 23rd district, according to the announcement during an event on Eid-ul-Fitr. Giving Malerkotla a district status was a pre-poll promise of the Congress. The Chief Minister also announced a Rs 500-crore medical college, a women's college, a new bus stand and a women police station in Malerkotla. "I know this has been a long-pending demand," Amarinder Singh said during a video conference.
In a tweet later, the Chief Minister he wrote, "Happy to share that on the auspicious occasion of Eid-ul-Fitr, my government has announced Malerkotla as the newest district in the state. The 23rd district holds huge historical significance. Have ordered to immediately locate a suitable site for the district administrative complex."
Happy to share that on the auspicious occasion of Eid-ul-Fitr, my Govt has announced Malerkotla as the newest district in the state. The 23rd district holds huge historical significance. Have ordered to immediately locate a suitable site for the district administrative complex. pic.twitter.com/9j6pNRgXWC— Capt.Amarinder Singh (@capt_amarinder) May 14, 2021
Capiatn Amarinder Singh recalled the rich history of Malerkotla and said the creation of the new district will ease hardships of people in dealing with administrative problems. Initially, subdivisions of Malerkotla and Ahmedgarh as well as the sub-tehsil of Amargarh will be included in the district. The process of bringing villages under the jurisdiction of Malerkotla district will begin later after the conclusion of the Census operations, he added.
Amarinder Singh directed the Sangrur deputy commissioner to find a suitable building to immediately start the functioning of the district administration office, according to an official statement. The deputy commissioner for the new district will be appointed soon, he said. Announcing various development projects, the Chief Minister said a government medical college in the name of Sher Mohammed Khan, who had been a Nawab of Malerkotla, will soon be set up and the state government has already allotted 25 acres on the Raikot road for it.
To ensure the development of Malerkotla, the Chief Minister also announced a sum of Rs 6 crore under the Urban Environment Improvement Programme (UEIP). To promote the cultural heritage of Malerkotla, Amarinder Singh said he has written to the Aga Khan Foundation for the conservation and restoration of the Mubarak Manzil Palace.
The Punjab government has acquired the 150-year-old palace and its restoration will be a befitting tribute to the Nawabs of Malerkotla, he said. Tracing the town's history, the Chief Minister said it was established in 1454 by Sheikh Sadruddin-i-Jahan from Afghanistan and subsequently the State of Malerkotla was established in 1657 by Bayazid Khan. Malerkotla was later merged with other nearby princely states to create the Patiala and East Punjab States Union (PEPSU).
During the reorganisation of states in 1956, the territory of the erstwhile State of Malerkotla became part of Punjab. Going down memory lane, Captain Amarinder Singh, who belongs to the erstwhile Patiala royals, recalled his cordial ties with the then Nawab of Malerkotla, whom he fondly called chachaji.