In a sudden move, Delhi’s Environment and Food and Supplies Minister Asim Ahmed Khan was today sacked by Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal over charges of corruption and the case has been referred to CBI.
The Chief Minister said the decision to sack Khan was taken after examining a audio clip of a purported conversation in which the Food Minister was heard asking for a bribe from a builder.
Kejriwal, announcing the decision to remove Khan at a press conference, said Imran Hussain, first time MLA from Ballimaran, will be the new face in his Cabinet.
Elaborating on the complaint against Khan, he said the government had received allegations against him last night that he demanded money from a builder to contiune construction of a building in his constituency of Matia Mahal.
“We received a complaint last night that a building was being built in his constituency. It’s construction was stopped and money was demanded from the builder, who paid the amount.
There was a mediator between the MLA and the Minister,” the Chief Minister said.
Asking BJP to follow suit, the AAP leader demanded removal of Rajasthan Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje Scindia and Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan for their alleged involvement in graft.
“We will not spare anyone be it Minister, MLA or officer.
Just give us evidence and we will remove the culprit the moment such charges are brought to our notice,” the Chief Minister said.
Sources said Khan, when confronted with the audio clip, had confessed to Kejriwal of his wrongdoing.
The Chief Minister said the action has been taken suo motu.
“It was not a result of media expose. There will be no compromise with corruption. The decision has been taken with a heavy heart as there was a lot of trust involved. He’s being removed till the CBI probe is on,” he said.
-Husain to replace sacked minister Khan-
Ballimaran MLA Imran Husain, a first time legislator, will replace sacked Environment and Food Minister Asim Ahmed Khan in the Delhi cabinet.
Husain, (34), who did his Bachelors in Business Studies from the Jamia Milia University, has defeated BJP’s Shayam Lal Morwal by a margin 33, 877 votes in last state assembly elections.
A senior government official said “Name of Imran Husain, who is an MLA from Ballimaran, will be sent to Lt Governor Najeeb Jung for inducting him in the Cabinet. Lt Governor’s office will fix a date for Husain’s swearing-in-ceremony and then, his portfolio will be announced.”
Incidentally, both Khan and Husain had joined the Aam Admi Party before the parliamentary polls. Husain is one of the three Muslim AAP MLAs in the Delhi Legislative Assembly.
Sources said the party wanted to replace Khan by another minority face and the “obvious choice” for it was Husain.
“He is descent person, approachable and has a good outreach in his constituency,” said an AAP leader.