Amarinder govt’s soft-pedaling on multi-crore irrigation scam a ploy to protect culprits: Bhagwant Mann

Chandigarh, October 5, 2019 (Yes Punjab News)

The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), Punjab, has accused the Captain Amarinder Singh government of shielding those involved in the mega multi-crore scam in the irrigation department during the tenure of the previous Badal government, even as the prime accused in the scam, contractor Gurinder Singh Bhapa, in a written statement, had not only confessed having been into the shady deal involving crores of rupees and named then Akali ministers and officers, but had also made sensational revelations about a hefty bribe worth crores doled out to them by him to bag contracts.

Mann said that it was pertinent to note that the sensational revelations were made by Gurinder Singh Bhapa more than two years ago, but the Captain government in the saddle had yet to act upon it against the former Akali ministers, bureaucrats and other officers named in the confession statement, Mann questioned, saying that the Captain government’s dilly-dallying in the case had raised issues of propriety.

In a statement issued from party headquarters on Saturday, state unit president and Member of Parliament (MP) from Sangrur, Bhagwant Mann said that during the 10-year long ‘Mafia rule’ of the Badals, the mega scam worth crores of rupees was a fit example of the open ‘loot’ of the people of the state by those in the echelon of power, including their kin, besides Sukhbir Singh Badal, then ministers Janmeja Singh Sekhon, Sharanjit Singh Dhillon, top-ranking IAS officers, and officials of the irrigation department and others.

Mann further said that, in his confession statement, the prime accused, Bhapa, had confessed before the Vigilance Bureau investigations on August 17, 2017, to have allegedly paid a whopping bribe worth crores of rupees to the accused Akali ministers, their personal assistants (PAs) and others whose names had prominently figured in the statement, alleging the Captain’s government, which grabbed power in the state on the false sweet-sounding promises pedaled among the people, more than two and a half year ago, had yet to take a call on it.

Mann said that while the confession statement of the prime accused Bhapa had gone viral on social and mainstream media platforms, the accused ministers and the officers involved in the scam were sitting with their fingers crossed as they enjoyed the protective patronage of the Captain government.

Mann cautioned that if the state government failed to take an urgent calls on the issue and bring those involved in the scam soon, the Aam Aadmi Party would be left to resort to legal recourse.

He added that it was the farming fraternity in the state which had to pay a heavy price post the scam, stating that the AAP would reach out to every household in the state and lay bare the Captain-Badals’ scams and scandals and their extending protective cover to mafia lords.

The AAP leader said that if the sleepy Captain government failed to bring those behind the scams to justice, the AAP move heaven and earth to nail them, if voted to power in the in the 2022 Assembly verdict.

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