Amid demands of a CBI probe into the Chhattisgarh PDS scam and resignation of Chief Minister Raman Singh, the no-confidence motion moved by the Congress against the BJP government was defeated early on Sunday morning. The discussion on the motion continued for over two days, stretching past Saturday midnight, and the voting took place around 2.15 am on Sunday. The BJP government received 50 votes, while the Congress secured 37 in the 90-seat assembly. Two Congress MLAs and an Independent legislator remained absent.
During the discussion in the House, Congress targeted Singh over the alleged involvement of people close to him in the scam. The CM responded by claiming that the anti-corruption bureau is working with full independence and no one will be spared.
Leading the debate on Saturday night, leader of Opposition TS Sinhadev said that the government has failed on all fronts and has lost the confidence of the people. He pointed out that the government has not fulfilled several promises, including Rs 300 per quintal bonus to paddy farmers. Citing CAG reports, he alleged that the government bypassed rules to provide mining benefits to certain private companies. Sinhadev claimed that the state government’s policies have left people “impoverished” and said that over 90 per cent of families in rural areas and 70 per cent families in cities earn less than Rs 5,000 per month.
Singh replied that the no-confidence motion is a “bag full of lies” and has no merit. He added that the motion reflected Congress’ frustration at “facing defeats across the country”. Claiming that Congress has been the mother of all scams in the country, Singh said that to further his policy of “zero tolerance” for corruption, he has taken steps to ensure transparency, restrict officers’ discretionary powers and strengthen the police agency working against corruption. Pointing out that his government had introduced food security in the state, he claimed that his policies have curbed migration and ended starvation deaths.
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