Sand mine auction row: Can only recommend action, up to govt now: Justice Narang

Justice Narang was the probing authority of the one-man commission constituted by Chief Minister Amarinder Singh after allegations surfaced against Rana Gurjit linking two mines bagged by his former employees to him.

Written by Kanchan Vasdev | Chandigarh | Published:October 14, 2017 2:00 am
punjab auction, punjab minister, punjab auction rules, punjab sand mine, sand mine auctions, sand mine punjab auctions, india news Punjab’s Irrigation Minister Rana Gurjit Singh (Express File Photo)

JUSTICE J S Narang (retd), who probed allegations of irregularities against Punjab’s Irrigation Minister Rana Gurjit Singh in connection with auction of sand mines, Friday said he was only recommending action and the onus was now on the government to act. Justice Narang was the probing authority of the one-man commission constituted by Chief Minister Amarinder Singh after allegations surfaced against Rana Gurjit linking two mines bagged by his former employees to him.

Breaking his silence on the commission’s report, Narang told the Indian Express: “I have recommended the cancellation of the two mines bagged by Kulvinder Paul and Amit Bahadur as the money for the mines was not invested from their account numbers. I can only recommend cancellation. I cannot cancel the allotment as the commission did not come under any law to take any action.”

He added, “The report was submitted to the government. It is now up to the government to take action or not. The final decision is to be taken by the government.” Narang had submitted his report in August and the Chief Minister had downmarked the report to Punjab Chief Secretary Karan Avtar Singh. The latter had constituted a three-member panel comprising Home Secretary N S Kalsi, Finance Secretary Anirudh Tewari and Industries Secretary R K Verma. The panel was asked to submit its report within a month. However, two months have passed since the constitution of the panel but the report is still awaited.

Sources said the panel had met three times but was yet to reach a conclusion. It is, however, certain that the government would act only after the panel’s report as it had not taken action after the Justice Narang commission report was submitted. Chief Secretary Singh had told The Indian Express last week that the government would act after the panel’s report. He had said the panel would take a week or so to submit its report. The Congress camp, meanwhile, is tight-lipped about the commission’s report.

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