With the local business community protesting against the sealing orders issued by the Punjab and Haryana high court, the ruling SAD-BJP and the opposition Congress are indulging in mudslinging over the issue.
Whereas Congress leaders — MLA Brahm Mohindra, former Improvement Trust president KK Sharma, former youth Congress district president Harpal Singh and others — sided with the protesters saying the government was doing nothing for the traders, the SAD leaders questioned the absence of local MLA Capt Amarinder Singh from the city.
Mayor Ajitpal Singh Kohli said the Congress leaders had no moral right to question the state government over the issue. “They must introspect and bring Patiala MLA and MP before the people and then ask questions of the chief minister and deputy chief minister,” said Kohli.
“What moral right do they have when the Patiala MLA, who has won the seat for the third consecutive time with a record margin, is conspicuous by his absence? Amarinder is nowhere to be seen when there has been an agitation in Patiala for the past week. Also, local MP Preneet Kaur is nowhere to be seen. Neither has made their stand on the issue clear and both are on foreign tours,” he said.
“As for the Congress leaders’ demand that the government look into the issue, let me clarify that the government is doing its duty and does not need advice from the Congress. The government is trying to address the issue within the framework of the Constitution,” he said.
On the other hand, Congress leader Harpal Singh said the SAD-BJP should find a way out to save the business community. He said the SAD-BJP was silent on the issue as Patiala had always voted for the Congress.