3 Punjab Cong. MLAs quit panels after being ‘ignored’

first_imgThe resentment within Punjab Congress over last months ministerial expansion is far from over. Anguished over not being able to make it to Chief Minister Amarinder Singh’s Cabinet, three senior Congress legislators on Monday submitted their resignation from Punjab Vidhan Sabha (Assembly) committees.Former Minister Rakesh Pandey, MLA from Ludhiana (North), Randeep Singh Nabha, legislator from Amloh, and Amrik Singh Dhillon, MLA from Samrala, tendered their resignations from the panels as a mark of protest.They submitted their resignations to Punjab Assembly Speaker Rana K.P. Singh.Mr. Pandey and Mr. Nabha were nominated as chairman and member of the committee on public undertakings respectively while Mr. Dhillon was appointed the chairman of the library committee on May 7.“We have tendered our resignations from the Vidhan Sabha committee to the Speaker here today,” said Mr. Pandey, “My seniority has been ignored when the Cabinet expansion took place. I am a six-time MLA and have worked for the party,” he said.Mr. Pandey, a former Printing and Stationery Minister, described his resignation as a mark of protest over the denial of a ministerial berth. Mr. Dhillon, a four-time MLA, shared similar views. “What will we do with the chairmanship (of Vidhan Sabha committee),” he asked, terming the denial of a ministerial berth as “injustice” to senior legislators.Mr. Dhillon accused the Chief Minister Amarinder Singh of not following what he had said. “The CM promised to consider seniority in giving ministerial berths. But one-time and two-time MLAs have been chosen over us,” he said.‘Will work for people’Mr. Dhillon, however, said he will continue to work as an MLA for the welfare of the people.Mr. Nabha, a four-time MLA, said he was “hurt” over seniority being overlooked.Protesting MLAs said they will reach out to the party high command to convey their concerns.Rumblings within the Congress started last month month itself, when the names of the new Ministers were announced. Surjit Singh Dhiman, MLA from Amargarh in Sangrur district, Nathu Ram, legislator from Balluana in Fazilka and MLA Sangat Singh Gilzian, MLA from Urmur seat in Hoshiarpur, had resigned from their party positions claiming Dalit and backward classes had been ignored in the Cabinet expansion.The resentment within Punjab Congress unit over the Cabinet expansion had even reached Delhi last month when Dalit leader and MLA Raj Kumar Verka expressed “anguish” over not giving representation to the Scheduled Caste community in the Cabinet.Nine Cabinet Ministers of the Amarinder Singh-led Punjab government had taken oath last month. (With PTI inputs)last_img

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