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Other States - Madhya Pradesh Printer Friendly Page   Send this Article to a Friend

Copter shadow hovers over Amarinder

By Our Staff Correspondent

Photo: A.M. Faruqui

STAR POWER: Film star Jeetendra addressing an election meeting in favour of the Congress candidate from Bhopal South constituency.

BHOPAL NOV. 25. The Union Law Minister, Arun Jaitley, today called for penal action against the Punjab Chief Minister, Amarinder Singh, accusing him of "misusing'' the State Government aircraft for Congress party's electioneering work in Madhya Pradesh.

At a Press conference, which he addressed jointly with popular actor and Union Minister of State for Tourism, Vinod Khanna, at the Bharatiya Janata Party headquarters here today, Mr. Jaitley said Capt. Singh's action amounts to not only "violation of the code of conduct" but also misuse of State aircraft" and a breach of trust.

Mr. Jaitley said that Government property is entrusted to a public servant for use of the Government and is not supposed to be misused. But this is exactly what Capt. Amarinder Singh had done by using the Punjab Government aircraft to participate in Congress campaigning in Madhya Pradesh.

The Union Law Minister demanded that the Election Commission take immediate steps to launch action against Capt. Amarinder Singh. A few days have already passed since the BJP had lodged a complaint with the EC, he added.

Mr. Jaitley said that the BJP would win the State Assembly polls with a comfortable majority as there was a ground-swell of support for it due to the anti-incumbency factor in the State. The Congress campaign in the State is in disarray, he said adding that the big difference between 1998 and 2003 can be summed up with the famous adage, "you can fool some people for some time but not all the people all the time''.

When asked whether "election management'' by the ruling side would tilt the election results Mr. Jaitley retorted: "Ten years of mismanagement cannot be countered by one day's election management''.

The agenda for the present round of elections, Mr. Jaitley said, has been decided and laid down by the BJP through its campaign.

Mr. Vinod Khanna was highly critical of the Congress Government's performance in the State and in this context mentioned the condition of roads in the rural areas. The State is also reeling under the harsh impact of power crisis as well as shortage of water and closure of sick industrial units, he added. Mr. Khanna also predicted that the BJP would win in Madhya Pradesh with a huge margin.

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