BJP has devised new ways to topple governments, says Punjab CM Bhagwant Mann

Published on Sep 28, 2022 01:57 AM IST

Says BJP removing governments “not by elections but by by-elections”, accuses Congress of acting as saffron party’s B-team; quoting instances of Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra, Punjab CM Bhagwant Mann said they have made the ruling party MLAs defect to their side, made the governments fall and then held by-elections and formed their governments.

Punjab chief minister Bhagwant Mann speaking in the House while presenting the ‘confidence motion’ on Tuesday. (RAVI KUMAR/HT)
Punjab chief minister Bhagwant Mann speaking in the House while presenting the ‘confidence motion’ on Tuesday. (RAVI KUMAR/HT)
By, Chandigarh

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has devised a new way to topple governments “not by elections but by by-elections”, said chief minister (CM) Bhagwant Mann in the House on Tuesday, during his speech while presenting the confidence motion.

Quoting instances of Karnataka, Madhya Pradesh and Maharashtra, Mann said they have made the ruling party MLAs defect to their side, made the governments fall and then held by-elections and formed their governments.

“However, destiny plays larger role and no one can escape it. Look at what has happened to the Congress, the party stands decimated,” said Mann while speaking in the state legislative assembly during a special session which was initially called for a single day and later extended for three more sittings till October 3.

Accuses BJP of trying to get AAP MLAs on its side

In his usual sarcastic style, referring to ‘Operation Lotus’, he added that the BJP made attempts to win over AAP MLAs, but they stood united and refused all allurements.

“All my 90 sepoys (MLAs other than him and the Speaker) are one force and no one can break them,” Mann said in the house amidst thumping of desks by the members on treasury benches.

The CM said that BJP made similar attempts on the AAP government in Delhi in 2013, then in 2015 and now recently, but the party stood united.

‘AAP performing, but results may take time to show’

According to Mann, AAP government in Punjab is performing, though it may take six months to show results, but a beginning has been made.

“We have given free power to the households and each day, 1.25 lakh consumers benefit from the scheme. Mohalla clinics are providing health facilities at people’s doorsteps, and our government has implemented the promise of one MLA-one pension,” he said counting his government’s achievements.

“People of Punjab have given us brute majority. Unlike in the past when other parties used to work for people during the last three months before polls, AAP has started people-centric works from Day-1 in power,” he said.

“Following our footsteps, BJP, the party which indulged in politics on caste and religious lines, has also started visiting schools and hospitals,” Mann said, adding, “I suggest the ruling party in the Centre stop making big announcements from Lal Qila (Red Fort) and instead reach out to the poor in their houses the way AAP government in Punjab and Delhi is doing.”

Pointing towards the opposition benches, the leader of the house, Mann, termed Congress a B-team of the BJP, as they claimed that there was no operation lotus.

“Their MLAs are raising questions on our style of functioning, pointing fingers at our decisions. They should appreciate the steps taken by our government which are praiseworthy,” he said.

Speaking on the ‘Bharat jodo yatra’ started by Congress leader Rahul Gandhi, Mann said the route of the yatra proves that Congress is mixed up with BJP. “It (yatra) is not visiting the states where BJP is strong,” the CM said and concluded saying that confidence motion is people’s motion and 2.75 crore people of the state will support it.

After Mann, cabinet minister Aman Arora told the House that confidence motions are legitimate and such motions were taken up on many occasions in the Parliament in the past. “Congress’ problem is that all of them have been sold out and they want AAP also to act in the same manner,” he added.

Ex-CM Channi took many controversial decisions

Lashing at former CM of the Congress party, Charanjit Singh Channi, Mann said his predecessor took many controversial decisions in the run up to the polls. “Every day, I receive files pertaining to questionable decisions which were taken in the last days of the previous government; now when I want to ask Channi ji why he is not available,” said Mann raising questions about former CM’s whereabouts.

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  • ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    Gurpreet Singh Nibber is an Assistant Editor with the Punjab bureau. He covers politics, agriculture, power sector, environment, Sikh religious affairs and the Punjabi diaspora.

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