New Delhi: Punjab Health Minister Vijay Singla was arrested on Tuesday over corruption charge. This came after Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann said Health Minister Vijay Singla has been removed from the state cabinet.
Proud of you Bhagwant, tweets Kejriwal
Arvind Kejriwal said, “Proud of you Bhagwant. Your action has brought tears to my eyes. Whole nation today feels proud of AAP,” he tweeted.
Proud of you Bhagwant. Ur action has brought tears to my eyes.
Whole nation today feels proud of AAP https://t.co/glg6LxXqgs
— Arvind Kejriwal (@ArvindKejriwal) May 24, 2022
AAP Rajya Sabha member Raghav Chadha tweeted
Hailing Mann’s decision, AAP Rajya Sabha member Raghav Chadha tweeted, “The Aam Aadmi Party is the only party that has the integrity, courage and uprightness to take action against their own on grounds of corruption. We saw it in Delhi, now we are witnessing it in Punjab. ZERO TOLERANCE FOR CORRUPTION. Commendable decision by CM @BhagwantMann.”
Aam Aadmi Party is the only party that has the integrity, courage & uprightness to take action against their own on grounds of corruption.
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We saw it in Delhi, now we are witnessing it in Punjab.
ZERO TOLERANCE FOR CORRUPTION.
Commendable decision by CM @BhagwantMann
— Raghav Chadha (@raghav_chadha) May 24, 2022
In a video message shared on social media, Mann said he decided to sack Dr Singla after learning the minister was allegedly demanding 1% commission for tenders passed. The state health department floats tenders worth thousands of crores for buying medicines, equipment and other material.
The chief minister said that he had directed the police to register a case against Dr Singla after which he was arrested.
A case had come to my knowledge, a minister of my govt was demanding a 1% commission for every tender. I took it very seriously. Nobody knew about it, had I wanted it could have brushed it under the carpet. But I would have broken the trust of people who trusted me: Punjab CM pic.twitter.com/k4loYRashC
— ANI (@ANI) May 24, 2022
Mann said he had received a formal complaint that the minister was indulging in corruption. “I am taking strict action against him. I am removing him from the cabinet,” he said, adding when confronted, Dr Singla confessed to the wrongdoing.
“I could have brushed the complaint under the carpet since neither the media nor opposition parties were aware about it. But since the Arvind Kejriwal-led Aam Aadmi Party has adopted zero tolerance against corruption, I immediately sacked the minister,” he said.
The Chief Minister claimed that this is the second time in the country’s history that a Chief Minister has taken such strict action against his own cabinet colleague. Earlier in 2015, Kejriwal had sacked then Delhi’s Food and Civil Supplies Minister Asim Ahmed Khan from his cabinet on corruption charges.
Singla, who has been dismissed from cabinet, is an MLA from Mansa. He is a dentist by profession and runs a dental clinic in the city. Singla joined AAP about seven years ago.