New cases surface against Virbhadra on jobs on chits: Dhumal

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Una, May 16 (UNI) Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Prem Kumar Dhumal has said new cases against former chief minister Virbhadra Singh regarding providing 'jobs on chits' during the Congress regime had surfaced.

Addressing mediapersons here last night, he said investigations had been ordered and appropriate action would be initiated against those found guilty.

Mr Dhumal said it would not be proper to divulge the number of such cases that have come to light, adding that incidents of providing jobs on chits were either surfacing through official records or were being brought to the notice of the government by individual complainants.

He clarified that some chits with the signatures of Mr Singh had also been traced.

He said the allegations regarding usurping 161 bighas of land by the former would also be probed and the guilty officers would be booked.

''The former CM not only cheated the people of the state, but also the deities,'' Mr Dhumal claimed.

He said the former CM had announced grants worth Rs 12.5 crore for repair and renovation of temples without making any budgetary provisions.

The Chief Minister said the difference between the Congress and the BJP was that while the former started with a political vendetta and raids in 2003, the latter began with announcing people-friendly and welfare schemes for the weaker sections of the society.

He challenged Mr Singh to prove that he had made budgetary provisions for subsidising essential food items through fair price shops during the last one year in office.

The Chief Minister also challenged PCC President Viplove Thakur's statement that the proposed distribution of Compact Fluorescent Lamp (CFL) bulbs was a Union government scheme.

He said if this was the case, Rajya Sabha member Mr Thakur should help the State Government in garnering a sum of Rs 85 crore from the Center, which will be spent on providing 64 lakh CFL bulbs.

The CM charged that the previous Congress government was also linked with issuing fake certificates. He pointed out that a former minister and the former chairman of the School Education board were facing charges in a fake certificate scam.

He added that a former woman MLA from Hamirpur district had issued a certificate to a criminal that the latter had served a jail sentence during the freedom struggle and she was also in the same prison at that time.

However, the CM said investigations revealed that while the MLA was not born at the time when she claimed to have served a jail sentence, the man in question was in prison for the murder of three people in Bilaspur district.

Mr Singh was accompanied by MLAs Suresh Bhardwaj, Satpal Singh 'Satti' and Virender Kanwar.

UNI XC-AS JN GL KN2006

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