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Capt backs minister, says won’t act without evidence 

Chandigarh, February 25

Days after the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) dragged Food and Civil Supplies Minister Bharat Bhusan Ashu’s name in the Ludhiana CLU scam, Chief Minister Capt Amarinder Singh on Monday ruled out arbitrary action against anyone without evidence.

As the proceedings of the concluding day of the Budget session began, pandemonium prevailed in the House after the Speaker turned down Leader of Opposition Harpal Cheema’s request to play two audio clips in which Ashu is allegedly threatening inquiry officer DSP Balwinder Singh Sekhon. AAP legislators later walked out of the House.

The CM slammed the Opposition for trying to exaggerate the matter. Other ministers and MLAs too came in support of Ashu.

Apparently sensing differences between Ashu and Local Bodies Minister Navjot Singh Sidhu over the delay in the execution of development works in Ludhiana, Akali MLA Bikram Majithia accused Sidhu of colluding with AAP to target his Cabinet colleague. Akali MLA Pawan Kumar Tinu too sought the resignation of both Sidhu and Ashu. 

Asserting that an inquiry had already been initiated, the Chief Minister said, “If any anomaly is found with regard to issuance of land clearance certificate to the realtor, strict action would be taken against the guilty.”

After AAP refused to budge on the issue and sought Sidhu’s reply on the issue, Ashu told the House that he was ready to face any action, if found guilty in an inquiry conducted by a government agency. He proposed a time-bound House committee to probe the matter, to which rebel AAP MLA Kanwar Sandhu said they would agree to this provided the minister resigns till the pendency of the probe.

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