Navjot Manpreet unite the Opposition Budget Session From rejecting Manpreet’s budget proposals to open front against Navjot Sidhu, the divided opposition was found standing beside each other ,Budget Session
Cabinet Minister Navjot Sidhu
A day after the presentation of budget, the Opposition on Wednesday appeared united to corner the treasury benches in Punjab Vidhan Sabha. The main Opposition Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) and the previous ruling alliance Shiromani Akali Dal-Bharatiya Janata Party, both accused the ruling Congress and Finance Minister Manpreet Singh Badal of playing with the sentiments of poor debt-ridden farmers with also terming the Budget a mere farce.Leader of Opposition H S Phoolka and former Finance Minister Parminder Singh Dhindsa, while speaking during the debate over budget, claimed the budget document was far from the factual position. The two leaders also claimed that it lacked the road map to fulfil the promises made with masses. It was unexpected to see the AAP and SAD-BJP MLAs advising each other about the strategy of their protests. Taking a cue from the same, the Congress MLAs claimed that both of them were united and played just a friendly match during the Vidhan Sabha elections. During the Question Hour, SAD MLA Pawan Kumar Tinu asked about the Sewerage Treatment Plant in Adampur area, replying to which Local Bodies minister said that of the total 64 STPs constructed in SAD-BJP tenure, not even a single was functional.
“Par Punjab de bhale layi asi sab chala devange. Te vaada karda haan ke eho jihe MLAs de v halqe ch main STP chala doon,” said Sidhu in chaste Punjabi, while pointing at Tinu. As Tinu belongs to Dalit community, he took an objection to the minister’s statement and termed it a casteist slur. Led by the SAD president Sukhbir Singh Badal, all SAD-BJP MLAs came in the Well of the House and started raising slogans against him, seeking apology from him. However, Sidhu denied the charges of making casteist remark but claimed that he had referred to him as “eho jihe MLAs” (like these MLAs). “There is nothing wrong in it. I addressed him respected MLAs sahib for numerous time and in the continuity once I referred him as “eho jihe MLAs”. They are now terming it a grave violation of the Vidhan Sabha decorum and making issue out of it but they must also not forget that they have also used abusive language against the Speaker,” said Sidhu, in his clarification.Though Speaker assured that he would verify the fact by going through the recording and if Sidhu was guilty, he would take appropriate action, the Akali Dal MLAs didn’t listen to him and finally they staged walk out. Meanwhile the Speaker adjourned the House and once it was resumed, Leader of Opposition HS Phoolka stood up and condemned Sidhu’s words. Phoolka also targeted Navjot, saying that once they were walking out in protest Sidhu made “some objectionable comments” against his party members too.
He dubbed the remarks against his party as “unfortunate” and demanded apology from Sidhu. “Let me remind him. Don’t dare us. We are the ones who stood against those accused of setting Sikhs on fire during militancy period,” a furious Phoolka said.
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