Shimla: Vidya Stokes, Irrigation & Public Health Minister, Thakur Singh Bharmouri, Forest Minister, Sudhir Sharma, Urban Development Minister and Prakash Chaudhary, Excise and Taxation Minister have termed the charge-sheet submitted by the BJP to the Governor of Himachal Pradesh, as a bundle of lies.
In their joint press statement, ministers stated that the BJP was feeling the heat of the inquiries initiated on account of the wrongdoings by the BJP government while being in power and has prepared this false charge-sheet to distract the attention of general public from their misdeeds.
The Ministers expressed surprise at the temerity of the BJP of levelling false charges in case of Sai Kothi Project which was allotted to M/s. Venture Energy and Technology Limited during the regime of Prem Kumar Dhumal as Chief Minister. They claimed that the extension to this company was given by the BJP twice, in the year 2009 and in 2010. The present government allowed ten-month extension in 2013. When the company failed to deposit the amount within prescribed time period, the present government cancelled the allotment and terminated the agreement signed with the company.
They said that it was strange that the BJP turned a blind eye when the Dhumal Govt gave extension to the company and that too not once but twice. But when Congress gave extension, they started calling it wrong. They said that BJP should first explain that how their government allotted this project and granted extension twice. They said that Chief Minister had already issued a statement during Vidhan Sabha Session at Dharamshala clarifying each issue connected with this matter. Despite this, the BJP was trying to misguide the people of Himachal Pradesh and trying to throw mud hoping that it would stick.
They said that the BJP and its leaders by conniving with certain people filed a false CD case. Chief Minister boldly contested the Session trial and came out clean. The Session Court honourably exonerated Virbhadra Singh.
Congress leaders said that the BJP was also misguiding the people of the state regarding the statement of Ram Kumar Chaudhary of Doon Constituency. Lajja Ram Chaudhary, father of Ram Kumar Chaudhary and former MLA has already denied in press of such statement having been issued by Ram Kumar Chaudhary. They said that the BJP was afraid of Virbhadra Singh because it knew that as long as Virbhadra Singh stayed as Chief Minister of Himachal Pradesh, the BJP has no chance of return to power. Therefore, it was targeting Virbhadra Singh with false charges which have no substance, whatsoever.
The Ministers believed that the Chief Minister has most effectively utilized the funds available under Chief Minister Relief Fund. This fund has been used exclusively for the welfare of needy people from all sections covering all districts of the State. In the last one year, an amount of Rs. 12 Crore has been utilized from this fund.
They said that Virbhadra Singh was the most popular and respected Chief Minister of Himachal Pradesh not only in the State but also in the country. Congress leaders stated that the BJP till date was not able to reconcile the defeat it suffered in the last Vidhan Sabha elections.
Congress leaders stated that the party was fully united and shall give a befitting reply in the coming Lok Sabha elections. They advised BJP leaders to introspect themselves first and asked them to look into the misdeed of Prem Kumar Dhumal and his sons who have made HPCA as their personal fiefdom by taking government land worth hundreds of crores on lease at the rate of Rs.1/- per year.