The Punjab chief minister said his state was made to pay a heavy price for deployment of Central para military forces.
Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) president Sukhbir Singh Badal has said Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann has lost the moral authority to remain in his chair as he had failed as home minister to such a level that now it seemed that dreaded gangsters like Lawrence Bishnoi were running the state.
Reacting to the online video interview given by gangster Lawrence Bishnoi to a TV news channel, the SAD president said on Wednesday: “It is clear that the interview was given when the gangster was in Bathinda jail. This only shows that the Aam Aadmi Party government’s writ does not run in jails in Punjab where gangsters are not only using mobile phones freely but openly boasting of killings and extortions. This is a clear case of complete breakdown of law and order in the state. Bhagwant Mann has lost the moral right to continue in office”.
Speaking about the incident, Badal said it was appalling that the gangster was openly boasting that he had access to phones in jails at all times.
“The gangster also gloated that he had planned and executed the murder of Sidhu Moosewala along with his associate Goldy Brar and cousin Sachin Bishnoi”. He said earlier members of the Bishnoi gang had indulged in a gang war and killed a rival gang member in jail.
“All this only proves that the AAP government is allowing them a free reign in jail and that they are using jails to plan killings besides running extortion rackets,” the SAD chief said.
Badal also called out the timing of Bishnoi’s interview. He said it had come at a time when the Moosewala family had started a campaign to ensure justice for their son besides ensuring punishment for those who had leaked information about the withdrawal of the late singer’s security detail on social media.
“A large section of Punjabis feel that Bishnoi has been used by vested government interests to defame Moosewala”. Punjabis also felt that their chief minister had let them down by buckling to gangsters besides failing to control law and order as was seen in the government’s failure to take action against the mob which attacked the Ajnala police station recently,” he added.
Meanwhile the SAD president said the AAP government’s inability to maintain control over the jail administration had shocked Parliamentarians also. He said Members of Parliament cutting across party lines expressed shock at the developments in Punjab jails while interacting with him today.
“Already a large section of the Punjab industry has shifted base to other States due to extortions being levied from them. This exodus is likely to increase further with Lawrence Bishnoi being given carte blanche to further extend his criminal empire while in custody in Punjab”, Badal added.