Punjab Chief Minister Charanjit Singh Channi has refused to accept APS Deol’s resignation as state Advocate-General, sources said. Mr Deol had handed over his resignation letter to the Chief Minister on Monday following attacks from state Congress chief Navjot Singh Sidhu, who wanted him removed for representing two accused cops in a sacrilege and police firing case.
The development is seen as a reaction to Mr Sidhu’s public attacks on the state government; on Monday Mr Sidhu took a swipe at the Chief Minister after he announced slashing of the power tariff.
“Mr Sidhu’s speech attacking the state government is said to be the reason,” the source added.
“They (politicians) offer lollipops…this is free, that is free, which happened in the last two months (ahead of the Punjab Assembly polls slated to be held early next year),” the cricketer-turned-politician said while urging people to vote only on the agenda of Punjab’s welfare.
A senior advocate of the Punjab and Haryana High Court, Mr Deol was appointed to the post in September after Atul Nanda resigned as the Advocate-General after the unceremonious exit of Amarinder Singh as the Punjab chief minister.
Mr Deol’s appointment had triggered a debate within the party as well as he had represented former top cop Sumedh Singh Saini and Inspector General Paramraj Singh Umaranangal in relation to cases regarding incidents of sacrilege and subsequent police firing in Kotkapura and Behbal Kalan in 2015.
On Monday, Mr Sidhu’s wife welcomed Mr Deol’s decision to quit the post.
“…Attorney General (APS Deol) had appeared for (former DGP Sumedh Singh) Saini. He (who represented the accused in the 2015 sacrilege case) can’t represent us. Attorney General had to be changed,” Navjot Kaur Sidhu told reporters.