AAP minister issued notice over leaked tape, may be sacked

The course of action against Sarari will be decided after he is briefed about the internal inquiry into the issue.

Published: 29th September 2022 09:45 AM  |   Last Updated: 29th September 2022 09:45 AM   |  A+A-

AAP Logo, Aam Aadmi Party

Image used for representational purposes (File Photo)

Express News Service

CHANDIGARH:  Punjab Food Processing and Horticulture Minister Fauja Singh Sarari faces losing his portfolio as the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) on Wednesday served him a show cause notice over a purported audio clip that went viral in which the minister and his officer on special duty (OSD) are heard discussing ways to extort money from food grain contractors.

If Sarari’s reply is found unsatisfactory and the fact-finding team finds him guilty, he will become the second minister in the six-month-old AAP government to be sacked from the cabinet. Earlier Dr Vijay Singla was stripped of the health minister’s portfolio barely two months after the AAP came to power in Punjab after the assembly polls in February.

Sarari joined the Bhagwant Mann cabinet about two months back. It has been learnt that CM Mann refused to give a private audience to him. When the audio clip went viral, Mann was away in Germany. The course of action against Sarari will be decided after he is briefed about the internal inquiry into the issue.

Since the controversy broke out, Sarari has been saying that the clips were doctored by his OSD Tarsem Lal Kapoor to settle personal scores after he had refused to bail out his nephew in a case of misuse of the national flag.

The AAP may take stern action against him, since assembly elections are around the corner in Himachal Pradesh and Gujarat and the party rides on the platform of promising a corruption-free establishment.

In the audio clip, Sarari is heard talking about trapping some contractors involved in the transportation of food grains with the help of government officials when the trucks are half-loaded, in order to extort money from them. Tarsem had earlier met party leaders and apparently insisted on the genuineness of the clip. Sarari had also met AAP brass to present his side. 


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