New minister sworn-in in Punjab after Fauja Singh Sarari’s exit, portfolios reshuffled
Chandigarh : In wake of resignation of Punjab Horticulture Minister Fauja Singh Sarari on Saturday, Balbir Singh was sworn-in as a minister and allocated the Health and Family Welfare portfolio. The legislator from Patiala Rural, Balbir Singh is an eye surgeon by profession.
Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann has also reallocated portfolios after the new induction. Chetan Singh Jouramajra, who held the charge of Health Department, has been given charge of all portfolios which were with Sarari, while Higher Education has been taken from Gurmeet Singh Meet Hayer and given to Harjot Bains.
The Mines and Geology Departments, held by Bains, were given to Hayer. Sarari earlier in the day resigned from the Cabinet after his name had surfaced in a case of devising an extortion plan, becoming the second minister to go the just nine-month-old Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government.
Earlier, Vijay Singla, who held the Health and Family Welfare, was dropped from the Cabinet on corruption charges. Sarari was inducted into the Cabinet in July 2022. However in September, an audio clip went viral, wherein he was allegedly heard discussing an extortion plan to trap foodgrain transporters.
The audio clip was leaked by his close aide turned foe Tarsem Lal Kapoor. Sarari has all along maintained that the audio clip was doctored.