Punjab special assembly session: CM Mann spars with LoP Bajwa over drug issue - Hindustan Times
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Punjab special assembly session: CM Mann spars with LoP Bajwa over drug issue

By, Chandigarh
Oct 21, 2023 08:26 AM IST

Soon after the House resumed after obituary references, Mann started his speech while taking up the issues raised by the opposition during the Zero Hour

The Punjab assembly witnessed a heated exchange between chief minister Bhagwant Mann and leader of opposition Partap Singh Bajwa of the Congress over drug trade allegations, forcing speaker Kultar Singh Sandhwan to adjourn the House for 10 minutes.

Chief minister Bhagwant Mann speaking during the special assembly session in Chandigarh on Friday. (Ravi Kumar/HT)
Chief minister Bhagwant Mann speaking during the special assembly session in Chandigarh on Friday. (Ravi Kumar/HT)

Soon after the House resumed after obituary references, Mann started his speech while taking up the issues raised by the opposition during the Zero Hour.

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During the Zero Hour of the assembly session, Mann was responding to Bajwa’s remarks, who said an AAP MLA had alleged that some relatives of an AAP leader were involved in the drug trade.

Besides that Congress MLA Pargat Singh had raised the issue of the transfer of Tarn Taran SSP over his action against the mining mafia involving kin of the ruling party MLA.

Mann was replying to Bajwa during Zero Hour when their argument began. When Bajwa cited Jalandhar West AAP MLA Sheetal Angural’s allegations against AAP’s lone Lok Sabha MP Sushil Kumar Rinku, Mann retorted that there can be differences between party members and there is also a difference of opinion in Congress party. He went on to add: “Even (former CM) Captain Amarinder Singh had written against you (Bajwa) on involvement in the drug trade. What shall we do with that letter?”

Objecting to Mann’s remark Bajwa dared him to act against him. “Tu jo karna karla (Do what you like),” Bajwa said. He dared CM to take action against him over any issue, including the letter by Capt Amarinder Singh.

The CM objected to Bajwa addressing him impolitely. This led to an argument that divided the House.

AAP MLAs demanded action against Bajwa for using unparliamentary language. The minister and AAP MLAs come down heavily on the Bajwa and Congress. Finance Minister Harpal Singh Cheema said that Bajwa has a habit of using indecent language against the MLAs, and he should be served notice.

Both AAP and Congress MLA had a heated exchange of words over the issue and created din in the well of the House. Senior leaders from both parties saved the situation. The Speaker was forced to adjourn the House for 10 minutes. He even said that he will issue a notice to Bajwa for using indecent language against the CM.

Earlier on the transfer of SSP Tarn Taran, CM said that the government has the right to transfer any officer and he is not answerable to anyone for it. He said that the government is taking decisions as per mandate, and the governor has no right to question him over the transfer.

Before that Bajwa had said that the government should discuss the SYL issue, drugs and corruption, unemployment and tardy procurement and lifting of paddy.

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  • ABOUT THE AUTHOR
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    A special correspondent, Vishal Rambani is the bureau chief at Patiala. He covers politics, crime, power sector, environment and socio-economic issues, with several investigative stories to his credit.

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