Targeted for being Dalit, summoned on day of Baisakhi: Channi

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Targeted for being Dalit, summoned on day of Baisakhi: Channi

Chandigarh: Former Punjab chief minister Charanjit Singh Channi on Friday appeared before the Vigilance Bureau in connection with a disproportionate assets matter. Ahead of entering the bureau’s Mohali office at 11.10 am, the Congress leader slammed the state’s AAP government over his date of appearance being advanced and claimed that Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann’s regime was indulging in “vendetta politics”. The vigilance bureau had initially asked Channi to appear for questioning on April 12. He, however, requested for another date to join the investigation, which the bureau allowed, asking him to appear on April 20. Later, the bureau advanced the date to Friday.

Earlier in the day, the former CM challenged CM Bhagwant Mann to prove that he owned property worth Rs 170 crore and had 250 acres of land.

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Accompanied by senior leaders at Punjab Congress Bhavan here, Channi got emotional and alleged that the AAP government was anti-Dalit as he was summoned on the pious day of Baisakhi and on the birth anniversary of Dr BR Ambedkar.

Channi said he suspected that he could even be arrested during his visit to the vigilance office as the AAP government wanted to stop him from campaigning in Jalandhar.

“The AAP government may even eliminate me, but I won’t be cowed down. I will continue to speak the truth. The AAP falsely painted me corrupt to win the 2022 Assembly election. I dare the CM to hold a press conference to give details of my property. Am I being harassed by the Centre through income tax and ED and by the state through vigilance only because I remained the CM for three months?” Asked Channi, with tears welling up his eyes.

The former CM claimed that the fact was that his financial condition was not good and his ancestral house had been attached by court. “I had to get stay from court,“ he said. Channi was accompanied by CLP leader Partap Bajwa, PPCC chief Amarinder Raja Warring, Punjab affairs in-charge Harish Chaudhary and party candidate for Jalandhar bypolls Karamjit Kaur.

 

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