In latest development, ex-Punjab Minister Vijay Singla has been sent to police custody until May 27. The AAP leader was arrested by the Anti-Corruption Branch of Punjab on Tuesday following corruption allegations against him. According to Republic TV's sources, Singla was produced before Mohali Court, from where he was sent to police custody for three days. Before his arrest, Singla was sacked from the cabinet by Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann.
Earlier, the Punjab Chief Minister's Office (CMO) said that Dr Vijay Singla allegedly demanded a 1% commission from officials in tender allotments and purchase of goods related to the department. The 52-year-old was among the 10 medical professionals who won on AAP tickets in the recently concluded Assembly elections. Singla joined the AAP in 2016 and was soon made the joint secretary of the party's trade wing in the state.
Bhagwant Mann, less than two months after becoming the Punjab CM, reportedly acted on the complaints against his Minister. Taking to Twitter, he released a video saying, "A case had come to my knowledge, a minister of my government 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."
"People have formed the government of Aam Aadmi Party with great expectations, and it is our duty to live up to that expectation. As long as mother India has sons like Arvind Kejriwal and soldiers like Bhagwant Mann, the great war against corruption will continue for the nation. Arvind Kejriwal had made a promise that we would uproot corruption. There is no place for even 1% corruption," he concluded in a video message.
आम आदमी पार्टी का जन्म ईमानदार सिस्टम कायम करने के लिए हुआ है...@ArvindKejriwal जी ने हमेशा कहा है कि भ्रष्टाचार को बर्दाश्त नहीं करेंगे चाहे कोई अपना हो या बेगाना— Bhagwant Mann (@BhagwantMann) May 24, 2022
स्वास्थ्य मंत्री के खिलाफ भ्रष्टाचार के सबूत मिलते ही तुरंत बर्खास्त किया...साथ ही FIR के आदेश दिए pic.twitter.com/0g9nqGteHb
It should be mentioned here this isn't the first time that an AAP Minister has been sacked in similar directive within months of the formation of the government. Earlier, when Kejriwal came to power again in 2015, he had sacked his Food Supplies Minister Asim Ahmed Khan over corruption charges.