POLITICS

Punjab Minister's Ex-Employee Bags 26 Crore Sand Mining Contract Four Days After Auction Rule Change

Opposition parties have asked for the cabinet minister's resignation.

29/05/2017 12:29 PM IST | Updated 29/05/2017 12:56 PM IST
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File photo of Punjab Minister for Power and Irrigation Rana Gurjit Singh.

An ex-employee of Punjab's Minister for Power and Irrigation Rana Gurjit Singh has bagged a ₹26 crore government contract for a sand mine. Interestingly, just four days before Amit Bahadur (Singh's cook who left his services in February this year) won the e-auction, the Congress government had decided to change the rules by keeping the bidders secret, reported Indian Express.

According to the report, the decision was made to "prevent cartelisation". However, the revelation that Bahadur won the contract has led to calls for Singh's resignation. Singh, meanwhile, has sought to distance himself from the issue.

Bahadur told NDTV that he was a proxy bidder for his new employer, one Captain Randhawa.

"It is the money of Rana Gurjit Singh who pumped it through his four former employees to get mining contracts in Punjab," Aam Aadmi Party MLA Sukhpal Khaira told PTI.

Earlier, opposition SAD and BJP had also sought action against the Cabinet minister.

"Rana Gurjit Singh's cook and other employees getting mining contracts worth crores is a classic example of what the Congressmen are upto," Tarun Chugh, the national secretary of the BJP said in a statement.

Former state chief minister Parkash Singh Badal has also said that Captain Amarinder Singh should ask for the irrigation and power minister's resignation.

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