Chandigarh: More than five months after his
expulsion from ruling Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD), former Punjab
Finance Minister Manpreet Singh Badal on Saturday resigned from the
state Assembly, saying he wanted a clean break up with the
Manpreet, who was elected MLA from Gidderbaha
constituency in 2007, on a SAD ticket, has forwarded his
four-page resignation to Punjab Vidhan Sabha Speaker Nirmal
Singh Kahlon for asking him to take appropriate action.
Manpreet, who was expelled from SAD on October 20 last
year for alleged breach of party discipline after he fell out
with the leadership over the debt waiver issue, said he had
offered to resign from the Vidhan Sabha, as he wanted a clean
break up with his past.
"Elections are not like Kumbh da mela (Kumbh fair) which
would come after 12 years. I am ready to contest the by-poll
in case the Election Commission of India decides to do so.
Before taking the decision I consulted the people of my
constituency who will anyway make me win again," said
Asked why it took him so long to decide to resign he said
the voters of his constituency did not want him to resign and
he respected their decision.
"I will begin with a fresh slate. Though technically I
can continue as legislator of the SAD and still launch a new
party, it would be improper. A firm break with the past is
required to create new links with the future. A future where
the mind is without fear and head is held high," said Manpreet
in the resignation.
On when his other supporters and the SAD MLAs namely
Jagbir Singh Brar and Manjinder Singh Kang would resign,
Manpreet said they were busy making arrangements for the rally
to be organized tomorrow at Khatkar Kalan. However, they too
would follow suit soon, he claimed.
He said Punjab Chief Minister appointed him as Finance
Minister in 2007. His (CM`s) failure to understand that Punjab
was debt ridden and the state of Punjab could work together
with the Union government to avail of the debt waiver, led to
his (CM?s) decision to sack him as finance minister.
He said he was pained at the wisdom of the Chief Minister
but added that it was his prerogative.
Reacting to Badal`s statement that Punjab was already
awakened and there was no need for the Jago Punjab movement,
Manpreet said he disagreed.
"There is no limits to awakening. But the old class is
afraid that people will be awakened. They want people to
remain in a state of slumber," he alleged.
At the end of his resignation letter Manpreet asked the
Speaker to transfer whatever salary and allowances and other
benefits were still due to him as a legislator to the Chief
Minister`s relief fund for cancer treatment and let it be his
last contribution to Punjab Vidhan Sabha.
Manpreet Singh badal said he was not in favour of holding
massive political rallies in future and probably the Khatkar
kalan would his last effort to organize a rally of large
He said such events not only spoil time and money of the
people but also cause inconvenience to the common man.
For Manpreet India is not as developed a nation as China,
Thailand, Egypt and even Philippines. However when pointed
that there was already an uprising in Egypt and people are
living in poor state and even the economy of Philippines was
weak Manpreet said he was talking about the earlier days.
Manpreet Singh Badal lost his cool while addressing the
press conference in the press gallery of Punjab Vidhan Sabha
when he was repeatedly asked to explain why it took him so
long to decide to resign.
Seeing the aggressive posturing of the media he even
offered to leave midway.
Later, at a separate media interaction, he alleged that
the Punjab government was using arm twisting tactics and other
methods to thwart his rally tomorrow.