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Punjab Guv questions CM over convicted minister’s continuation in Cabinet

Chandigarh : Punjab Governor Banwarilal Purohit on Friday questioned Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann over the morality of the continuation of Aman Arora in the Cabinet after his two-year conviction in a criminal case.

“This is a serious matter involving non-compliance of the directions issued by the Supreme Court. Can I have a detailed report on the entire issue,” the Governor wrote to the Chief Minister.

Citing a representation that had been received regarding the conviction of Arora, the Governor wrote, “From the representation, I understand that on December 21, 2023, a court of law convicted Aman Arora for two years and the conviction has not yet been stayed by the competent higher court.

“As per the judgement of the Supreme Court in the case of Lilly Thomos vs Union of India, MLAs stand divested of their membership if convicted and sentenced to imprisonment for a term not less than two years by a trial court.

“The representation also raises question over national flag hoisting by Arora on January 26 and alleged that the act of entrusting a disqualified legislator with the symbolic representation of the nation on a day as momentous as Republic Day not only undermines the sanctity of the legal system, but also sends an unsettling message to the citizenry regarding the government’s commitment to ethical values.”

A court in Sangrur has sentenced Arora to two years’ rigorous imprisonment in a family dispute case registered by his brother-in-law, Rajinder Deepa, in 2008. The court also sentenced eight others, including Arora’s 85-year-old mother, to two years’ in jail besides imposing a fine of Rs 5,000 on the convicts.

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