CHANDIGARH: Six-time MLA from Ambala Cantonment and senior BJP leader Anil Vij, often referred to as 'Gabbar Singh' and someone who has been at odds with the Haryana Police, is the new home minister.
After 23 years, the home portfolio is not with the Chief Minister in Haryana and Vij minced no words as he said, "Gabbar is back."
Vij, who has been entrusted the key portfolio of the Home Ministry, said, "My style of working is that I can go anywhere and raid any place anytime. Nobody should be scared of me. They (officials) need to work. I will not tolerate laxity. My message to the officials is clear -- perform or perish. If any official feels that one cannot perform, they can take voluntary retirement. I will hit a sixer wherever you will keep me. Gabbar is back.’’
In 2015, when Vij was the state Health Minister, he had alleged that the CID was 'spying' on him as he had caught an officer of the department. The same year, he had a spat with Sangeeta Kalia, a lady IPS officer, the then Superintendent of Police of Fatehabad in the grievance committee. In 2018 Kalia did not attend the grievance committee of Panipat which was chaired by Vij. Then he complained to Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar and she was transferred from Panipat. He had also earlier demanded that the cow be declared the national animal.
It was in 1996 that Mani Ram Godara was the home minister of the state as he was a close confidant of the then Haryana Chief Minister Bansi Lal. After that, the home department had always been with the successive chief ministers.
Sources point out that Chief Minister Khattar had to give up the home portfolio this time as he was not able to handle the Jat reservation agitation in 2016 and then the violence in 2017 after Dera Sacha Sauda chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim was convicted and before that in the violence in Barwala at Sant Rampal’s ashram. Opposition parties raised the issue during the recent assembly elections.