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Send Mann to rehab centre on public expense: MPs to LS Speaker

Three Lok Sabha MPs on Tuesday asked Speaker Sumitra Mahajan to send Aam Aadmi Party’s embattled MP Bhagwant Mann to a de-addiction centre on public expense.

india Updated: Aug 02, 2016 16:16 IST
HT Correspondent
Aam Aadmi Party MP Bhagwant Mann arrives to appear before a Lok Sabha panel regarding a row over live streaming a video on Facebook, at Parliament in New Delhi.
Aam Aadmi Party MP Bhagwant Mann arrives to appear before a Lok Sabha panel regarding a row over live streaming a video on Facebook, at Parliament in New Delhi.(PTI File Photo)

Three Lok Sabha MPs on Tuesday asked Speaker Sumitra Mahajan to send Aam Aadmi Party’s embattled MP Bhagwant Mann to a de-addiction centre on public expense.

In a letter to the Speaker, they said Mann should be allowed to return to the House only after he undergoes rehabilitation at a drugs/alcohol de-addiction centre.

The MPs alleged Mann often came to Parliament under the influence of intoxicants or alcohol and had denigrated the entire institution by his actions.

“This reflects very poorly and denigrates the seat of a member of this august House,” the three MPs -- Prem Singh Chandumajra (Shiromani Akali Dal), Harinder Singh Khalsa (suspended AAP member) and Mahesh Giri (BJP) – said in their letter. Khalsa, who was suspended from AAP last year, had earlier asked the Speaker to change his seat in the House, saying it was torturous to sit next to a drunk Mann

The three MPs did not substantiate their allegations about Mann’s alleged alcoholism, but insisted that it is ‘common knowledge’ that Mann is ‘always under the influence of alcohol or intoxicants’.

The letter by the three MPs comes at a time the AAP has been grappling with multiple cases filed against more than a dozen of its legislators -- ranging from criminal intimidation and molestation to rioting and faking educational qualification.

The Sangrur MP ran into trouble last month for live-streaming on Facebook his journey from his Delhi home to Parliament House that allegedly revealed security details.

The Speaker had “advised” Mann against attending Lok Sabha proceedings till a decision was taken on the report of an inquiry panel into the video.

Mann’s act of posting the video on social media “put the security of Parliament in peril,” the Speaker had said while announcing the probe panel.

The AAP is seen as a strong contender in the 2017 Punjab assembly elections, hoping to expand its base beyond Delhi where it got a decisive mandate in last year’s assembly polls. But the Mann episode could end up as a major embarrassment for the AAP, particularly after its allegations of ‘misrule’ in Punjab and the government’s alleged inability to end the drug problem in the state.