Bhagwant Mann to announce anti-corruption phone number on March 23

AAP leader Bhagwant Mann takes oath as Punjab Chief Minister. File

AAP leader Bhagwant Mann takes oath as Punjab Chief Minister. File | Photo Credit: PTI

Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann on Thursday said an anti-corruption helpline number would be announced on the death anniversary of Bhagat Singh on March 23 on which people of Punjab could report corruption by government officials. 

In a video statement, Mr. Mann said it would be his personal WhatsApp number and “if anyone demands a bribe, then do not refuse it, but record a video or audio of it and send it to the number.”

When the AAP government came to power for the first time in 2015, the AAP chief and then Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal had also issued a number to report corruption. 

 Mr. Mann said that 99% of people were honest, but the system crumbled due to the 1%. “We will always stand through thick and thin with honest officers, but system of forced weekly collection [ hafta vasooli] will now come to an end,” he said.

Kejriwal’s appeal

In a separate video statement, Mr. Kejriwal on Thursday told people of Punjab to not deny bribes if any official asked for it, but record the conversation and send it on a WhatsApp number that the Punjab Chief Minister would release on March 23. Mr. Kejriwal said quick action would be taken against such corrupt officials.

“Kejriwal doesn’t take bribes, Bhagwant Mann doesn’t take bribes, our Ministers don’t take bribes; we run governments with unwavering honesty. We don’t set ‘collection targets’ for officers, we only care for changing the system and eradicating corruption,” Mr. Kejriwal said.

“During Punjab elections, we heard everywhere — no work is done in this State without money. Bribes are asked for every work. Many congratulations to the people of Punjab. Now if someone asks for a bribe, record its proof. Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann will send them to jail. This is the Arvind Kejriwal Model of Governance,” AAP leader Manish Sisodia said. 

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Printable version | Mar 17, 2022 11:34:16 pm |