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Badal lashes out at Libra for abstention

July 23, 2008 19:30 IST

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Taking a serious view of party member  Sukh Dev Singh Libra's abstention during the trust vote in Parliament, the Shiromani Akali Dal on Wednesday said stringent action would be taken against him.

Libra's abstention was a serious matter and the party would take tough action against him soon, a visibly perturbed SAD supremo Parkash Singh Badal told media-persons in Chandigarh.

"During the debate on the confidence motion in the Lok Sabha, Libra was present on the first day. But, on the second day he left the House after signing the attendance register," Badal said. 

Libra action needed to be thoroughly condemned, the Punjab chief ninister said.

Asked what action would be taken against Libra, Badal said the party would take a decision in this regard soon.

On the trust vote, Badal said 14 members from various parties voted in favour of the ruling United Progressive Alliance. Eight National Democratic Alliance members had abstained from voting.

On the outcome of the confidence vote, Badal said, "Numerically the Congress-led government has won but, it has suffered a huge moral loss. The ruling coalition has won but the country and the democracy have lost."

On the display of wads of currency notes in the House, Badal termed the episode  "Shameful and the worst period in the history of the country." The entire nation was now looking up to Speaker Somnath Chatterjee [Images] for an impartial probe into the matter to punish the guilty and restore faith in the political system, Badal said.

 Badal said he had high regard for Manmohan Singh [Images], but it was regrettable that in his speech winding up the debate, he did not refer to the disgraceful incident.

Rejecting accusations that the SAD issued the whip to its party MPs under pressure from the BJP, Badal said the party had never succumbed to pressure from any quarter.

"No party is untouchable for Akalis. The only party that is untouchable is the Congress," Badal said.

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