Punjab Governor Banwarilal Purohit on Sunday alleged that Chief Minister Charanjit Singh Channi supplied the media with “factually incorrect” information over a jobs bill, the file of which he said was sent back to the CM’s office with some queries.
Channi on Saturday had threatened to stage a sit-in against Purohit for withholding assent to the Bill, which aims at regularising around 36,000 contractual employees. He had accused Purohit of dithering on approving the Bill under pressure from the BJP. Purohit said the file regarding regularisation of services of contractual employees was reverted to the Chief Minister’s office with six queries for clarification.
This file was duly received by the CMO on December 31 and the reply to queries is awaited, he said in an official statement. The information shared with the media by Channi on Saturday was “factually incorrect”, he said. “I advise the chief minister to give reply to the queries raised on the file,” said Purohit. “Once the reply comes, the Bill will be re-examined at the Governor’s Secretariat,” he said.
The state Assembly had passed the Punjab Protection and Regularization of Contractual Employees Bill-2021 on November 11. After a lapse of 20 days, the file was sent to the Punjab Raj Bhawan on December 1, said the statement. “During the month of December, the Governor was on tour to various districts of the state.
The Governor concluded the tour on December 21 and thereafter on December 23, the CM Punjab came and met him at the Punjab Raj Bhawan. The file was duly studied and reverted with observation/queries to the CMO on December 31, 2021,” it said. The Governor’s office has sought to know from the state government about the status of the case related to the Punjab Ad hoc, Contractual, Daily wages, Temporary, Work Charged and Outsourced Employees Welfare Act, 2016, which has been challenged in the High Court.
The Bill seeks to replace the 2016 Act. The Governor’s Office also pointed out that the opinion of the advocate general had viewed that this Bill continues to remain vulnerable to legal challenge.
The state government has been asked to clarify as to how the specific views of the AG have been addressed in the Bill. With the regularisation of contractual employees who were recruited without following reservation rules, will the reservation ratio not get disturbed, the Governor’s Office asked the state government.
The Governor’s Office also sought to know how the state government proposed to meet the expenditure on account of regularisation of services.