By : Mohan Verma
BJP leader and former transport minister, Thakur Mahender Singh, has demanded resignation of the transport minister, G.S. Bali in the wake of a series of accidents, the highest number in the tenure of any transport minister in the history of Himachal Pradesh.
He said Mr. Bali should take moral responsibility of the accidents and step down forthwith. Referring to the bus accidents of HRTC buses in Shimla district on Wednesday in which 21 persons were killed, he said that hundreds of lives of the innocent people had been lost in accidents during the tenure of Mr. Bali due to “inefficiency and mismanagement” in the functioning of the transport minister, who was allegedly promoting the private players and meeting out a step-motherly treatment with the HRTC drivers and other employees causing widespread resentment amongst them. He also added that eye-brows were being raised against his style of functioning and there was a lot fishy about engaging private buses and drivers.
Thakur said that the matter will be raised in the forthcoming Vidhan Sabha session beginning from August 6, next month by him and other opposition leaders.
He said ever since Mr. Virbhadra Singh has taken over, the development works had come to a grinding halt in the state and the government was engaged in futile exercise of witch hunting and revengeful activities against the detractors of the chief minister.
He said after six decades he had taken the initiative of building a modern bus-stand at Mandi, the gateway to the panoramic valleys of Kullu, Lahaul & Spiti and Ladakh, but Mr. Anil Sharma, Rural Development and Panchyati Raj Minister, stopped it because it was built by the initiative of BJP and he and his father Pt. Sukh Ram had failed to provide a bus-stand for the historic town and were exposed in public eye.
BJP leader said when Mr. Anil had to face sharp criticism from the people of his Mandi constituency, he made a funny statement at a press conference at Mandi that transport minister Mr. Bali had got the work of the bus-stand stopped. This only exposed that Congress party in the state was a divided house of two factions of Virbhadra Singh and anti-Virbhadra Singh groups and all is not well within the Congress in Himachal Pradesh.
He claimed that some Congress MLA’s were sitting on the fence and were willing to abandon the sinking ship of Congress and join BJP, but the BJP at the moment was not eager to act in a haste and is watching the situation.