File Photo: Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh. Photograph:( ANI )
Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh on Tuesday trashed former Ludhiana Deputy Superintendent of Police's (DSP) charges against Cabinet Minister Bharat Bhushan Ashu.
Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh on Tuesday trashed former Ludhiana Deputy Superintendent of Police's (DSP) charges against Cabinet Minister Bharat Bhushan Ashu, saying had someone like Balwinder Singh Sekhon made such allegations against a senior commander in the Army, he would have been court-martialled.
Reacting to former DSP's allegations against Ashu, which were raised by some Opposition members in the Punjab House a day earlier, the Chief Minister said in the state Assembly that the former was only trying to conduct a media trial with his baseless charges.
"Unfortunately, this was not the Army and Sekhon could not be court-martialled," said Singh, asserting that if the departmental inquiry currently in progress against Sekhon finds him guilty, "he (the Chief Minister) would personally ensure the officer's dismissal under Article 311".
Ashu had already been given a clean chit at every level, by the Terrorist and Disruptive Activities (TADA) court and other courts, the Chief Minister said, adding that all cases referred to by Sekhon had been scrutinised through the judicial processes and no fresh evidence had been filed by the DSP.
Responding to Leader of Opposition Harpal Cheema, Singh later said Ashu had mentioned all these cases in his election affidavits.
"Sekhon was thrown out of police force and even dismissed from duty on many serious charges but was reinstated later. Now, he is making charges against my minister," Singh said, questioning the former DSP's locus standi in making any statements or allegations against Ashu.
Sekhon was placed under suspension on account of his unauthorised absence from duty and conduct, behaviour unbecoming of an officer and a member of the disciplined force.
A charge sheet, as specified in Clause (v) to (ix) of rule 5 of the Punjab Civil Services (Punishment and Appeal) Rules 1970, was served to the delinquent officer on February 19. "Further, as per record, five criminal cases were registered against Sekhon and he was dismissed under Article 311 in 2002 for indulging in corrupt practices and his connections with bad elements," the Chief Minister said.