Following rejection of a breach of privilege motion by the opposition Congress against revenue minister Bikram Singh Majithia, leader of the opposition Sunil Jakhar on Thursday accused Punjab assembly Speaker Charanjit Atwal of being unfair and biased.
Jakhar, who was away to New Delhi owing to his father's illness when chief minister Parkash Singh Badal gave a clean chit to Majithia while concluding debate on the governor's address, got up soon after the question hour ended to protest the rejection of the privilege motion and counter the CM's clean chit.
JAKHAR TARGETS SPEAKER
However, the speaker ruled it was not to be taken on record. After staging a walkout, Jakhar came to the press gallery to address mediapersons. "The speaker is acting like a censor board. He is supposed to be fair and impartial. But he is bent on throttling the opposition’s voice. He not only ordered that what I spoke will not be taken on record, but also got the mikes switched off. They are running away from even facing the opposition," he said.
“Who was the CM to exonerate Majithia?” questioned Jakhar. “Nobody other than the court can give a clean chit to the minister. I had asked the CM to say it on the floor of the House that Majithia was called as a witness by the Enforcement Directorate (ED) and not as an accused. But he did not once say it in his two-hour speech," Jakhar said.
Jakhar, who was at his satirical best, said former minister Swaran Singh Phillaur must be wondering, "Iski kameez, meri kameez se safed kaise (how is Majithia's shirt whiter than mine).
"Why did the CM not give Phillaur a clean chit? He made Phillaur resign from the cabinet just because his son was summoned by the ED. Hum nahin zamana kehta hai, aapke kamre mein koi rehta hai (It is not me but the world that says there is someone hiding in your room)," he said while targeting the CM.
MAJITHIA MISLEAD HOUSE
Claiming that his privilege motion was regarding a specific charge — that the minister misled the House by claiming he was summoned as a witness by the ED and not an accused — Jakhar said: "The speaker claimed that the matter was sub judice and had already been raised in the last session for rejecting the privilege motion. How is the CM giving a clean chit if the matter is sub judice? And resolutions and long debates on stray cattle and dogs have been held in previous sessions too, so why allow them again? It seems this issue is more important than drugs, which is affecting the future of our youth," he said.