Punjab Vigilance Bureau arrests AAP's Bathinda (Rural) MLA Amit Rattan Kotfatta on graft charges
Sources said that Amit Rattan, an AAP MLA from Bathinda (Rural) was arrested by the Vigilance Bureau on thursday morning from near Karnal in Haryana in a bribery case complaint lodged against him.
Published: 23rd February 2023 11:48 AM | Last Updated: 23rd February 2023 11:52 AM | A+A A-
CHNADIGARH: The Punjab Vigilance Bureau has arrested AAP's Bathinda (Rural) MLA Amit Rattan Kotfatta on the alleged charges of graft. He is the second politician of the ruling party in the state to be arrested as earlier the then Health Minister Vijay Singla was arrested and recently, cabinet minister Fauja Singh Sarari was dropped from the cabinet after allegations of corruption against him.
Sources said that Amit Rattan, an AAP MLA from Bathinda (Rural) was arrested by the Vigilance Bureau on thursday morning from near Karnal in Haryana in a bribery case complaint lodged against him by husband of Ghudda village sarpanch.
On February 16 Rashim Garg a close aid of the MLA was arrested from the Circuit House of Bathinda by the bureau on charges of taking Rs 4 lakh and the bureau was under pressure as it was alleged that it (VB) was trying to save the legislator in the case. The bribe of Rs 5 lakh was allegedly demanded from the sarpanch of Ghudda village in lieu of availing development funds of Rs 25 lakh.
Sources said the bureau arrested the MLA only after the forensic examination of the two minute audio recording of a purported conversation between Kumar, Kotfatta and Garg in which money was allegedly being sought by the MLA and the the voice samples of Rattan were confirmed, as these recordings were given by the complainant Pritpal Kumar who is the husband of Ghudda sarpanch Seema Rani.
He had said when he went to give the bribe to Garg the MLA who was sitting inside a room. Then the Chief Minister’s Office gave a nod to the bureau to arrest the party legislator.
Congress leader Harvinder Laddi has also announced to stage protest outside bureau office in Bathinda on this issue.
Sources said that in the state cabinet meeting held on Tuesday, CM Mann had reportedly told his cabinet colleagues to desist from taking their close relatives or friends as PAs or OSDs and also gave a hint that the legislator might be arrested.
When the CM a few weeks ago visited Bathinda, a few locals had complained to him that Rattan was involved in corrupt practices.
Before joining the AAP, Rattan was in Shiromani Akali Dal and he was expelled from the SAD over allegations of duping people in the name of providing them jobs.
Senior SAD leader Daljit Cheema said the government tried to shield its legislator but following pressure from various political parties it was forced to arrest him.