Sanjeev Singh Bariana
Chandigarh, January 18
Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann’s decision to close the ethanol plant at Mansurwala village in Zira yesterday took everyone by surprise, including senior bureaucrats, at the CM’s office.
The announcement came after a brief meeting of the CM with Chief Secretary VK Janjua. Highly placed sources in the CMO claimed that “no other officer was taken into confidence before the formal announcement by CM Mann”.
Legal and administrative experts said a lot needed to be clarified on procedural, administrative and legal grounds as to how the decision was taken and what was the way forward.
They said the announcement meant nothing as the matter was sub judice before the Punjab and Haryana High Court and the National Green Tribunal (NGT).
Sources in the CMO said, “The Chief Minister took the decision after studying the matter in detail. Mann also held consultations with legal experts, who recommended closure of the Zira ethanol plant.”
“There are some issues in the ongoing case in the Punjab and Haryana and High Court, which are yet to be settled. Paper work related to the decision is being finalised,” the sources said.
Reports from Ferozepur said no officer at the district headquarters was taken into the loop before the Chief Minister’s decision.
Though protesters are elated, the Sanja Morcha said it was in no hurry to lift the dharna and wanted everything in writing. The protesters also sought withdrawal of FIRs registered against the agitators and return of “fards” (land records) attached by the administration.
Deposit Rs 20 cr with exchequer
- LoP Partap Singh Bajwa on Wednesday asked the government to deposit Rs 20 crore with the state exchequer from the party fund
- Bajwa said it was now clear that the factory was causing pollution, therefore, paying Rs 20 crore to the factory owner was unjustified
- AAP spokesperson Neel Garg said Chief Minister Bhgawant Mann’s decision had proved that this was pro-farmer
- “CM Mann himself comes from a farmer’s family. He understands the pain and sufferings of the farming community,” said Garg
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