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Congress demands removal of 3 Punjab ministers

PTI | Last Updated: Monday, March 3, 2014 - 21:37

Chandigarh: The Congress on Monday demanded that three Punjab ministers - two for their alleged involvement in a drug racket and the third for having his name in Voters` Lists of two different places - be removed from the Badal government.
Congress Legislature Party leader Sunil Jakhar submitted a memorandum to Governor Shivraj V Patil seeking removal of Revenue Minister Bikram Singh Majithia and Tourism Minister Swaran Singh Philluar of the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD), and Medical Education & Research Minister Anil Joshi of BJP.

Earlier today, Congress members boycotted the Governor`s address on the opening day of the Assembly session protesting against Majithia`s continuation in office. They submitted the memorandum soon after the session ended today.
"...We seek to draw your attention towards some pressing issues that need your urgent intervention to safeguard the constitutional and legislative propriety, which is being undermined by the SAD-BJP government in the state," the CLP leader said in the memorandum.

Jakhar sought to draw the Governor`s attention towards the alleged involvement of Majithia and Phillaur`s son in the drug racket. Arrested smuggler Jagdish Singh Bhola had named the duo as the "chief patron" of the drug racket.

"Due to the magnitude of power wielded by the concerned ministers, their continuing to hold office would enable them to influence the outcome of any inquiry," Jakhar said, adding that their removal "will help carry out an impartial probe".

He said Medical Education & Research Minister Joshi had, in gross criminal violation of the People`s Representation Act, included his and family members` names in Voters` Lists of two different places. The Election Commission had already asked the district authority to look into the matter.

"Propriety demands that the minister should have resigned immediately. We request you to kindly have the minister removed from office without any further delay," Jakhar said.
Jakhar said the problem of unemployment has reached "alarming" height in the state, and industry "is fleeing Punjab due to lack of infrastructure".

Due to financial mismanagement of the SAD-BJP government, the state is facing bankruptcy to the extent that it is not able to pay salaries to its employees for months, he said in the memorandum.

First Published: Monday, March 3, 2014 - 21:37
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