CHANDIGARH: The Enforcement Directorate which comes under the Union Finance Ministry has issued summons to Punjab Revenue and Public Relations Minister Bikram Singh Majithia brother-in-law of Punjab Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal for December 26 to investigate the money-laundering angle in the Rs 6000 crore drug racket case. The ties between both the alliance partners SAD and BJP are already strained and likely to get further deteriorated.
Meanwhile the Congress, BJP and PPP have demanded resignation of Majithia.
Sources said that enforcement directorate has sent summon to Majithia to appear before it’s Jalandhar office on December 26 for questioning the agency had has prepared a detailed questionnaire and will grill Majithia for his alleged links with some accused and the NRIs suspected to be involved in the racket.
The ED has been questioning all those people which had been named by Jagdish Bhola a dismissed DSP of the Punjab Police, in November last year the main accused arrested by the Punjab Police in the Rs 6000 crore drug case which was busted with the arrest of Anoop Singh Kahlon, an NRI in March 2013. After that the police had arrested Amritsar based businessman Bittu Aulakh and Jagjit Singh Chahal, who own pharmaceutical companies. Afterwards the ED had recorded their statements.
In their statements, the accused alleged that the minister knew Canada-based drug dealers, Satpreet Satta and Parbinder Singh alias Pindi. Also Satta was given gunmen by the minister and the accused attended Majithia’s marriage.
Chahal owns pharma companies which were allegedly manufacturing precursor chemicals ephedrine and pseudoephedrine which were being diverted illegally for the production of synthetic drug ICE.
Bharatiya Janta Party which is the alliance partner of the akali dal in the government has demanded resignation of Majithia. Punjab BJP President Kamal Sharma demanded Majithia resignation for a fair probe.
Punjab Congress President Partap Singh Bajwa today demanded resignation of Bikram Singh Majithia. He reminded Majithia that earlier, the then Jails Minister Sarwan Singh Phillaur had resigned in the same case when the name of his son had surfaced. Now it was Majithia who had been summoned and he must resign and appear before the investigators to pave the way for transparent investigation. He alleged that Majithia had to be finally summoned as there was no other way out as the ruling first family in the state was out to scuttle the investigations. It was for this reason that he had been demanding CBI inquiry which the state government had been opposing. He said that it is imperative that the Union Government constitutes a Judicial inquiry headed by a sitting Judge of the Supreme Court.
People’s Party of Punjab chief Manpreet Singh Badal also demanded resignation of Majitha. `` In case Majithia is innocent and his name has been wrongly involved for political reasons, he will get himself redeemed by proving his innocence during investigation by the Enforcement Directorate and re-join the cabinet which will not be a problem,’’
Meanwhile Congress Deputy Leader in the Lok Sabha Capt Amarinder Singh said that the summoning of Majithia by the Enforcement Directorate on the drug issue has only vindicated his stand. Amarinder pointed out, he had consistently been maintaining that the Punjab Police, which was primarily investigating the case, was not the only one to do so as there were other agencies like the Revenue Intelligence and Enforcement Directorate also involved in the investigations.
“Handing it over to the CBI as demanded by some people at that stage when the Punjab Police and other agencies were already doing their job would have only delayed and derailed the investigations and it would have taken years for summoning the accused,” he said.
Despite repeated tries Punjab Revenue and Public Relations Minister Bikram Singh Majithia was not available for comments. His sister Harshimrat Kaur Badal is Union Minister of Food Processing Industry in the NDA Government.