Earlier today, opposition Congress MLAs raised a ruckus in the Punjab Assembly demanding the arrest and dismissal of Horticulture and Food Processing Minister Fauja Singh Sarari over an audio clip in which he allegedly discussed ways to trap contractors in order to “extort” money from them.
In the absence of chief minister Bhagwant Mann, the ruling AAP legislators seemed unable to counter a Congress that was refusing to allow the House to function. Leader of the Opposition Partap Singh Bajwa led the Opposition MLAs in seeking Mann’s response and an assurance about action against him.
For about three hours, the Congress leaders raised slogans against the AAP government, wearing capes with slogans against the minister. The party should not have served a show-cause notice to the minister alone, according to Bajwa.
Sukhpal Khaira, a member of the Bholath assembly, asked Speaker Kultar Singh Sandhwan to guarantee that CM Mann would make a statement on the issue. He was denied. Congress protested against a Treasury move raking up the SC scholarship scam, but it failed to deter the Opposition. Deputy Leader of Opposition Dr Raj Kumar Chabbewal said that the public will learn about the AAP government’s double standards on corruption through live broadcasts of House proceedings.
Amrinder Raja Warring asked the CM about the government’s stand on the issue. Despite the audio clip going viral, no action is taken against Sarari, despite the arrest of former Health Minister Vijay Singla on the basis of the audio clip.
As confusion permeated the Treasury benches, the Congress pressed the AAP MLAs until the session ended at 5.30 p.m.