Himachal Pradesh health scam: Congress says ‘BJP’s honesty exposed’, demands probe by sitting HC judge

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Updated: May 29, 2020 9:28 AM

Himachal Health Scam: Congress said the vigilance will never go against the bosses and demanded a thorough probe into the matter by a sitting judge.

himachal pradesh health scam Congress leader Virbhadra Singh has demanded a thorough probe into the health scam by a sitting judge. (File pic)

Himachal Pradesh Health Scam: A day after Himachal Pradesh BJP president Rajeev Bindal resigned over his alleged role in a health scam, the state Congress on Thursday reiterated its demand of entrusting a probe into the scandal to a sitting high court judge. Meanwhile, Bindal, in a 5 minute-long video statement, claimed that he would come out as pure as gold in the ordeal.

The state BJP president had resigned from his post on Wednesday within four-and-a-half months of his appointment, saying he was doing so to ensure a proper investigation into the case of alleged corruption by a health department official.

In a resignation letter sent to BJP president J P Nadda, Bindal said he was tendering his resignation on high moral grounds as some people were dragging the party’s name in the alleged corruption by the health official.

Health Services Director Ajay Kumar Gupta was arrested on May 20 by the State Vigilance and Anti Corruption Bureau after a 43-second audio clip went viral, in which he purportedly asks the other person for a bribe of Rs 5 lakh.

In a statement issued here on Thursday, veteran Congress leader and former chief minister Virbhadra Singh demanded a thorough probe into the scam by a sitting judge and stated that BJP’s honesty was exposed with the scam, especially at a time when the state was battling coronavirus.

Talking to media, state Congress president Kuldeep Singh Rathore alleged that raincoats were provided to frontline COVID-19 warriors instead of personal protection equipment (PPEs) in Bilaspur district and sanitisers were purchased at much higher prices for the state secretariat. He claimed that some chief medical officers purchased a 500 ml sanitiser bottle at Rs 700 instead of its actual price of Rs 250 as purchased by the state Ayurvedic department.

Alleging a goof-up in sending 15 COVID-19 positive people to their homes in Hamirpur, both the senior Congress leaders flayed the BJP-led state government for showing negligence in handling the coronavirus situation leading to a spurt in cases.

Expressing doubts over the ongoing vigilance inquiry in the case, Rathore said the vigilance will ‘never go against the bosses’ as Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur also holds additional charges of home and health departments and the vigilance.

The probe into the scam should be entrusted to a sitting high court judge, Virbhadra and Rathore asserted.

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