CLP meeting: No strategy discussed as MLAs open front against own govtUpdated: Feb 20, 2020, 22:59 IST
Chandigarh The Congress Legislature Party (CLP) meeting on Thursday held to chalk out a strategy for the budget session of the Vidhan Sabha turned into a forum for venting out frustrations by the MLAs against their own government.
The agenda was hijacked by the listing of grouses, even as chief minister Capt Amarinder Singh was chairing the meeting. The CM has given his nod to a meeting of longer duration on Tuesday next week, with MLAs saying they wanted an audience with him more often.
Interestingly, anticipating that there could be an outburst of concern and anger from MLAs, even the personal staff of the CM, including his security advisor Khubi Ram, and a political secretary was sent out of meeting venue. The hospitality staff that was to serve tea and snacks were also not allowed.
In spite of this, however, chaos prevailed at the meeting when a verbal spat broke out between an MLA from Moga district and a cabinet minister from Bathinda over the transfer of a tehsildar. A section of MLAs claimed that the minister and MLA exchanged heated words, even as the CM looked on. It was only after senior MLAs intervened that decorum was restored. Ghanour MLA Nirmal Singh Shutrana also attacked the government.
MLAs Gurkirat Singh Kotli, Parminder Singh Pinki and Kulbir Singh Zira said that in Punjab Bhawan, New Delhi, MLAs had been pushed to B-blocks instead of their entitlement in A-block. “It has never happened in the past. I brought it to the notice of CM, who assured us that he will find a solution,” Kotli told HT. Madan Lal Jalalpur complained that despite repeated surveys by the state food department, residents of his constituency had still not received ration cards.
An MLA from Kapurthala attacked the functioning of a top minister, citing the issue of transfers of certain officers in Sultanpur Lodhi nagar council. “You have become ministers only after we were elected as MLAs. If we ignore those who have elected us as MLAS, how will we function,” he said.
Parliamentary affairs minister Brahm Mohindra tried to pacify the MLAs asking them to take up grouses within the party fold and not outside.