Demanding revenue minister Bikram Singh Majithia's dismissal from the cabinet in view of drug racket accused Jagdish Bhola's allegations, Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee (PPCC) president Partap Singh Bajwa on Wednesday sought President's rule in the state, while giving a call for Punjab Bandh on January 16.
Bajwa added that on January 20, Congress workers led by him would gherao the residence of Punjab chief minister Parkash Singh Badal here. "We will block road traffic across the state from noon to 3pm (on January 16). Our intention is not to cause inconvenience to anyone, but to force the CM to wake up and take action against Majithia," he said.
From January 21, Congress leaders would go on an indefinite hunger strike in Mohali, seeking a criminal case against Majithia and his removal from the cabinet.
Talking to mediapersons, Bajwa demanded the Centre's intervention in the multi-crore drug racket in Punjab. The PPCC chief said he would meet governor Shivraj Patil on Thursday, demanding the imposition of President's rule in the state as "things were getting out of control after the busting of the drug racket."
He also reiterated the demand for the transfer of the drug racket case scandal to the CBI.
"Ours is a border state. Earlier, Punjab was said to be a passage for drug smugglers; now, as per revelations made by the police, synthetic drugs are manufactured here. I am also seeking an appointment with President Pranab Mukherjee on January 10 to explain the situation to him and suggest the imposition of President's rule as the only solution," Bajwa said.
He said this was not simply a drug racket, but had implications for national security since the chain of drug traffickers was linked to the drug mafia in foreign countries. "The conduct of Majithia and other guilty ministers amounts to sedition," he claimed.
Bajwa said the Congress would not let the CM hush up Majithia's alleged involvement in the drug racket in the wake of strong evidence against the latter. He also demanded a probe to ascertain the involvement of Punjab Police officers in the drug racket. Congress MLAs Kuljit Singh Nagra, Charanjeet Singh Channi, Balbir Singh Sidhu and Ajitinder Singh Mofar were present on the occasion.
Questioning the silence of the BJP, the SAD's alliance partner, on Bhola's allegations against Majithia, Bajwa said, "BJP leaders are hand in glove with the SAD and they have become puppets in the hands of the Badal family. The BJP had failed to play its role of a responsible partner."