Is Punjab CM Bhagwant Mann capable of handling law & order: Anurag Thakur

Hitting out at the AAP over violence in Patiala, I&B Minister Anurag Thakur wondered who was in-charge of law and order situation in the Punjab as Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann “spent more time outside the state”. “There is a breakdown of law and order in Punjab. The chief minister is spending more time outside the state. We do not know who is looking after the law and order in the state,” Thakur told reporters here.

He was responding to questions about the clashes that took place in Patiala over an “anti-Khalistan march” in which at least four persons were injured.

“Is the Punjab government and Chief Minister capable of controlling the situation? Will strict action be taken against those who tried to disrupt the harmony and brotherhood in Punjab,” Thakur asked.

The BJP leader demanded to know what kind of ideology was the AAP trying to promote in Punjab.

“Even before elections, questions were raised about the intentions and capabilities of AAP. Their links with certain people were questioned too” Thakur said, adding that such questions about the ruling party in Punjab was a matter of concern as it was a “border state”.

“BJP wants development, peace, and brotherhood in Punjab, and stern action should be taken against the rioters,” Thakur said.

The Punjab government on Saturday shunted out three senior police officials, including an inspector general, and suspended mobile internet and SMS services in Patiala district, a day after clashes between two groups over an anti-Khalistan march left four people injured.

The clash took place outside the Kali Mata temple when members of an outfit that calls itself Shiv Sena (Bal Thackeray) began a ‘Khalistan Murdabad March’.

Some Sikh activists, including Nihangs, took out another march against the Sena event.

Near the Kali Mata temple, the two groups came face to face and hurled stones at each other. The temple gates were locked and police deployed in large numbers to prevent the situation from escalating further in the city, police said.

A Sena leader said the outfit had planned the march as a reply to the announcement by the banned overseas group ‘Sikhs for Justice’ to mark the ‘foundation day of Khalistan” on April 29. PTI SKU RCJ

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