Taj hits out at LC chairman

‘Malhotra Trying To Weaken Coalition; Will Press For No-Confidence Motion Against Him’

ARVIND SHARMA

Jammu, Nov 14: Sending jitters within the ragged state Congress by accusing the Legislative Council chairman of deliberately trying to weaken the coalition government in Jammu and Kashmir, Minister for PHE and Irrigation and Flood Control, Taj Mohi-ud-Din Wednesday said the House Committee against him was constituted “out of personal enmity” and he will emphatically press upon the party high command to move a no confidence motion against the former.
Launching a scathing attack on LC chairman and his party colleague Amrit Malhotra, the minister claimed he has taken up the matter with Pradesh Congress Committee (PCC) chief, who has assured that “he will look into the issue”.
Just days after the LC chairman dissolved the House Panel, constituted to probe the alleged encroachment of forest land by the minister, Taj Mohi-ud-Din, at a hurriedly called press conference put a question mark over the “credibility of Malhotra”. He said; “Such irresponsible and senseless person should not be allowed to hold on to the chair for long as it will be an endorsement of his illegal and unconstitutional act”.
The minister claimed that certain elements were trying to weaken the coalition by creating a wedge between the coalition partners - Congress and the National Conference.
The minister said that he will request the Speaker to intervene in the matter and ask the chairman that how LC chairman constituted the committee without Speaker’s consent.
“He (Malhotra) did not order a probe against me but passed a judgment indicting me,” Taj said and added that the Forest Department has already made it clear that the land which he has been accused of encroaching upon, does not belong to the department.
He further claimed that 30 kanals of land, which he has been accused of grabbing, was a state land and he paid the money for the same and has all the documents with him. He also said that this is the matter of 1983 when he was not even a minister.
Branding the House Committee probing charges against him as unconstitutional and illegal, Taj maintained that the Committee was constituted with malafide intentions. “In Parliamentary history no House Committee can be constituted against minister but had to be done against the department. Leader of the House and eight other members had objected that the Committee is illegal and unconstitutional but even then the Committee was constituted”, he said adding that one member demanded committee and the other supported.
Taj said those who say criticize the dissolution of the committee know that ultimately it had to be dissolved. “Had they not done that, I would have approached the court and the court would have dissolved it”, he remarked.
He also said that he is not afraid of any probe provided it is done constitutionally. “I am not against any probe but it should be done by a constitutional body”, he said adding “If House Committees will probe charges against the ministers then what is the use of having constitutional bodies like State Accountability Commission (SAC) and State Vigilance Commission”.
Over the general perception that the NC has rewarded him for favoring the Chief Minister, Taj said, “I have directions from the party high command to support the CM but an impression is created that NC supported Taj’s scams”.
Responding to a query as why doesn’t he forfeit the piece of land of whom he doesn’t have the ownership rights, Taj reacted, “I am not a Satyawadi Harish Chander. Why should I give up my claim?”

Lastupdate on : Wed, 14 Nov 2012 21:30:00 Makkah time
Lastupdate on : Wed, 14 Nov 2012 18:30:00 GMT
Lastupdate on : Thu, 15 Nov 2012 00:00:00 IST




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