PIL in high court against Punjab CM Capt Amarinder’s cabinet expansion | punjab | top | Hindustan Times
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PIL in high court against Punjab CM Capt Amarinder’s cabinet expansion

The petitioner lawyer, Jagmohan Bhatti, made a mention of issue before the high court bench of justice AK Mittal and justice AS Grewal seeking urgent hearing. However, the court refused to entertain the PIL on Saturday and said that the same will be taken up on Monday. The swearing-in is to take place at 6 pm.

punjab Updated: Apr 22, 2018 11:41 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, Chandigarh
The swearing-in is to take place at 6 pm.
The swearing-in is to take place at 6 pm. (HT File )

Hours before nine Punjab MLAs are to take oath as ministers on Saturday evening, a lawyer filed public interest litigation (PIL) before the Punjab and Haryana high court against the cabinet expansion, seeking a restraining order on the swearing-in ceremony.

The petitioner lawyer, Jagmohan Bhatti, made a mention of issue before the high court bench of justice AK Mittal and justice AS Grewal seeking urgent hearing. However, the court refused to entertain the PIL on Saturday and said that the same will be taken up on Monday. The swearing-in is to take place at 6 pm.

Petitioner lawyer has claimed that with the induction of nine MLAs as ministers, Amarinder Singh government is violating 15% ceiling on ministers’ appointment fixed as per 91st constitutional amendment.

The present strength of the Punjab cabinet is nine, including the CM himself, and nine new faces are being inducted. Punjab has a strength of 117 MLAs and, as per Bhatti, maximum number of ministers the state can appoint is 17 and not 18.

Bhatti had claimed that the government was reeling under severe financial crisis and did not have money to pay dearness allowance (DA), arrears etc to its employees and cases were pending in courts.

But still the government is expanding the cabinet beyond prescribed limit, he told court, adding that the appointments will cause losses to the state exchequer and were a “wasteful expenditure” of public money.