Chandigarh, October 2
Former Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh accused Congress of spreading “preposterous lies to cover up” the political crisis in the state.
A press release from Capt Amarinder Singh’s camp on Saturday said conflicting numbers were shared by Harish Rawat, the AICC general secretary in charge of Punjab, and Randeep Surjewala, a spokesperson for the Congress, over the purported letter received by the party’s central leadership expressing lack of confidence against him and said they were a “comedy of errors”.
His remarks came after Surjewala claimed that 78 of the 79 Punjab Congress MLAs had written to the party leadership asking for Captain Amarinder’s ouster. Just a day before that, Rawat had told the press that 43 MLAs had written to the high command.
“It seems the entire party has become imbued with Navjot Singh Sidhu’s sense of comic theatrics,” he said. “Next they will claim that 117 MLAs wrote to them against me!”
“This is the state of affairs in the party. They cannot even coordinate their lies properly,” the press release quoted him as saying. “The fact of the matter was that the 43-odd MLAs who had signed the said letter had been forced to do so under duress,” he claimed.
He said Congress was in a state of disarray and that several senior leaders of the party were disenchanted with it. Its state of panic was evident in the statements of its leaders and, grappling with internal chaos, it was trying hard to shift the blame of its own failures.
“It’s sad to see the way they are resorting to blatant lies to justify their wrongdoings,” he added.
He claimed the whole affair had been orchestrated by a few leaders at the behest of Navjot Singh Sidhu.
“This was evident from the lies Harish Rawat had mouthed yesterday, even on a sensitive and emotive issue like Bargari and the subsequent police firing cases,” said Captain Amarinder, claiming that these “falsehoods” could cost the party in the upcoming elections.
“Had I been hand in glove with the Badals, as they are alleging, I would not have spent the last 13 years fighting them in courts?”
He claimed his government “successfully” dealt with all three major sacrilege cases between June and October 2015. “In fact, the 3 main accused (Mohinder Pal @ Bittu, Sukhjinder Singh @ Sunny & Shakti Singh) wanted for the sacrilege incidents were arrested on July 5, within 16 months of the Congress government taking over,” the press release quoted Capt Amarinder as saying.
“Further, in the Kotkapura and Behbal Kalan firing cases, senior-most police officers, including IGP Pramraj Umranagal and SSP Chanranjit Sharma, were arrested within two years of the Congress taking over the state’s reins,” he said.
“About 12 people, including DGP Sumedh Singh Sani and former MLA Mantar Singh Brar, were nominated and chargesheeted in the case. In both these cases, 7 chargesheets were filed but some of these were struck down by the high court,” he said, accusing Sidhu and his aides of raising what he called was a “bogey of no action” to grab power.