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LIP MLA Bains, passport office at loggerheads over show-cause notice

Regional passport office awaits reply to its notice to Bains for hiding info over criminal cases against him, MLA cries foul.

punjab Updated: May 18, 2018 12:25 IST
Jatinder Kaur Tur
Jatinder Kaur Tur
Hindustan Times, Chandigarh
Lok Insaaf Party,LIP MLA,Simarjit Singh Bains
Lok Insaaf Party (LIP) MLA Simarjit Singh Bains

Lok Insaaf Party (LIP) MLA Simarjit Singh Bains and the regional passport office here are at loggerheads over the issuance of a show-cause notice issued to Bains for wilfully hiding the facts regarding criminal cases against him while applying for a tatkal passport.

While the 15-day period given to Bains for replying to the notice is already over, the MLA from Atam Nagar in Ludhiana claimed that he received the notice just 4-5 days ago after he returned from Australia recently.

Talking to HT over phone, he said. “I am yet to reply to the notice but I didn’t hide any information while applying for the tatkal passport.”

He added that he has also sent a complaint to the external affairs ministry about the malpractices in the passport department and sought an appointment with external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj in this regard.

Regional passport officer (RPO) Sibash Kabiraj said they would give 2-3 additional days to Bains and issue a final notice to the legislator for submitting his reply, failing which his tatkal passport will be impounded and cancelled.

Bains claimed he had produced the same declaration to the regional passport office regarding the criminal cases pending against him as he had submitted to the election commission while filing his nomination papers before assembly elections last year.

The RPO maintained that he was supposed to fill all information in his online declaration form which he failed to do. “The passport office got to know about the same in police verification report.”

He added, “The MLA should first file his reply and if we are convinced that the information was left out due to genuine ignorance, we shall cancel the notice and no action will be taken. But if he is found guilty of wilfully hiding the information, his passport would be revoked.”

Notably, there are around a dozen criminal cases pending against Bains in various courts of Ludhiana and Nawanshahr.

First Published: May 18, 2018 12:23 IST