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SAD, BJP stage walkout in LS on Punjab land scam issue

Written by: Staff
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New Delhi, Dec 5 (UNI) Members of the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD), led by Mr Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa, and the BJP today staged a walkout in the Lok Sabha in protest against the government's refusal to order a CBI inquiry into what they called a Rs 2,000 crore land scam in Punjab.

Raising the issue during zero hour, Mr Dhindsa said the Amrinder Singh-led Congress government in Punjab had in 2002 sold 120 acres of land in Mohali to a private party for setting up a shopping mall in violation of the laws governing forest land.

Mr Dhindsa and BJP Deputy Leader in the House, Prof Vijay Kumar Malhotra, demanded a CBI inquiry into the scam as was done in the case of the Taj Corridor project.

Parliamentary Affairs Minister Priya Ranjan Dasmunsi objected to the opposition members raising the subject as it related entirely to the state government. The House had the tradition of discussing only issues relating to communal riots, atrocities on SC and ST and threat to national unity even if these related to the states.

Earlier, Speaker Somnath Chatterjee allowed Mr Dhindsa as a special case to air his views on the issue before a calling attention motion listed for the day was taken up.

While the BJP members walked out of the House immediately after Mr Dasmunsi's remarks, the SAD members trooped into the well and had a heated argument with the Speaker before following the principal opposition party.

UNI SN MIR HT1310

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