CAPT AMARINDER FLAYS KHATTAR OVER NAMAZ REMARK, ACCUSES BJP OF TRYING TO COMMUNALISE ATMOSPHERE
- ASSURES FULL SECURITY DURING KATHUA CASE TRIAL IN PATHANKOT, ASSERTS COMMITMENT TO UPHOLDING JUDICIAL PROCESS
- URGES EC TO EXAMINE SHO’S ROLE IN FIR AGAINST LADDI, ALLEGES POLITICAL CONSPIRACY
Chandigarh, May 7
Taking strong exception to his Haryana counterpart ML Khattar’s reported statement about Namaz being offered only in mosques, Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh on Monday said the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) seemed to be trying to communalise the atmosphere in the country.
India was a republic governed by a Constitution and neither Khattar, nor anyone else, had the right to dictate to the people on where they should or should not hold prayers, said Captain Amarinder in response to questions at a press conference here.
Flaying Khattar for his controversial remarks on the issue, the Chief Minister said to his mind, the BJP seemed to be out to polarise the society on religious lines to garner votes.
Asked to comment on the transfer of Kathua rape-murder case to Pathankot, on the directive of the Supreme Court, Captain Amarinder said his government would ensure full security for the victim’s family, lawyer and others during the trial proceedings. His government, said the Chief Minister, was committed to upholding the judicial process as per the apex court’s directives.
To a question on the arbitrary registration of FIR by the Shahkot SHO against the Congress candidate for the upcoming by-election, the Chief Minister termed it a part of a political conspiracy and urged the Election Commission to probe the matter and examine the role of the SHO, as well as politicians, involved in it.
The SHO, who was upset over his earlier transfer from the district, had been in touch with AAP’s Sukhpal Singh Khaira and SAD’s Daljit Cheema, said the Chief Minister, adding that the FIR against Hardev Singh Laddi appeared to be a fallout of the same.
Captain Amarinder pointed out that the EC had merely asked the police to conduct an inquiry into a complaint against Laddi, but the SHO acted in unprecedented haste in registering the FIR.
The Chief Minister, in response to a query, ruled out any action against Akali leader Bikram Singh Majithia or anyone else till there was sufficient evidence against them of involvement in drugs trade. The matter was being examined by ED, with the High Court overseeing it, he pointed out.
Captain Amarinder said the STF on drugs was doing a great job, having already apprehended over 15,000 drug peddlers. The big fish had run away from the country and would also be nabbed soon, he said, adding that one big dealer had been arrested by the Hong Kong police and the Punjab government would be seeking his extradition.
To a question on his government’s affidavit in Supreme Court in the case against Local Government Minister Navjot Singh Sidhu, Captain Amarinder Singh reiterated that they could not have backtracked from the stand it had taken earlier in the Punjab and Haryana High Court. He said personally he was in complete support of Sidhu and hope that the court would take into account his great contribution to the country while deciding his case.