PCC relay fast enters day 3; Badal dubs it `political stunt`

Last Updated: Tuesday, January 21, 2014 - 22:07

Chandigarh: Punjab Congress `relay hunger strike` seeking CBI probe into a multi-crore synthetic drug case entered the third day on Tuesday with Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal describing it as a "political stunt".

Badal, in an interaction with the media here, said that in dearth of any tangible issue against the state government, the Congress leaders were resorting to such gimmickries.

Meanwhile, Punjab Congress Chief Partap Singh Bajwa addressing party workers sitting on relay hunger strike at Congress headquarters here, said the party had no political ambition behind launching an offensive against drugs.
The youth falling victim to drug menace belonged to every section of society irrespective of party affiliation, he said.

PPCC Vice President Sadhu Singh Dharamsot and District Congress Committee presidents Harminder Singh Gill, Anoop Bhullar and Sukhpal Bhullar sat on hunger strike along with party workers from assembly constituencies of Patti and Khemkaran constituencies today.

Punjab police had two months back busted a multi-crore drug racket, and arrested Jagdish Singh Bhola, a dismissed police officer, who is alleged to be the racket`s kingpin.

In a setback to the state Congress, Punjab and Haryana High Court had yesterday "dismissed as withdrawn" two petitions, filed by Bajwa and another senior party leader, seeking CBI probe into the drug racket.
Reacting to the court verdict, Bajwa said they, however, were granted liberty to assist the court in a pending petition relating to the issue of drug menace.

He said his counsel would put up "evidence and arguments" in the Punjab and Haryana High Court during hearing of the petition filed by former Punjab DGP Shashi Kant on January 29.

He said his counsel`s focus during arguments will be on CBI probe into the multi-crore drug case.

"This case (multi crore drug racket) has international ramifications," he said adding, "Punjab government is seeking interpol help in the drug case and that is possible only from a competent authority like CBI."

He lambasted Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal, who also holds the portfolio of Home Minister, for "giving clean chits" to Revenue Minister Bikram Singh Majithia and SAD MP Rattan Singh Ajnala despite Bhola`s allegations of their involvement in the case.

He said in the coming days party leaders including Ambika Soni, Manish Tewari and Preneet Kaur will also participate in the relay hunger strike.

"We will take this drug case to town and village levels in Punjab," he said.

Meanwhile, on being asked to react on the relay hunger strike, Badal ruled out handing over the probe to CBI and said the Congress leaders were politicising the revelations made by a person accused of a heinous crime of drug trafficking.

"A shrewd criminal like Bhola could name any person just to save his skin. It is unfortunate that the Congress leaders were trying to take political mileage out of it," he said.

Badal said every step in this multi crore drug case was being taken after the meticulous enquiry by the state police and even the Director General of Police of the state was personally monitoring the entire case, so there was hardly any need for handing over this enquiry to the CBI.

PTI

First Published: Tuesday, January 21, 2014 - 22:07

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