Lookout Circular Issued for Former Minister Manpreet Badal Amid Fraud Allegations

Rozana Spokesman

News, Punjab

In light of a fraud case, Manpreet Badal's anticipatory bail plea withdrawn; airports on alert to prevent possible escape

Manpreet Singh Badal

CHANDIGARH: The Former Punjab Finance Minister and current BJP leader, Manpreet Badal, withdrew his anticipatory bail plea that he had filed with the Bathinda Sessions Court. The Move comes as investigations progress into a case involving alleged fraud. Badal's lawyer, Sukhwinder Singh Bhinder, mentioned that the initial petition was submitted during ongoing investigations. However, now that a case has been officially registered, they intend to file a new petition with updated facts.

Adding to the urgency, authorities have issued a lookout circular to prevent any potential attempt by Manpreet Badal to flee the country. All airports have been put on alert, considering the possibility of him leaving India following the registration of the case. The Vigilance Bureau suspects that Manpreet Badal might attempt to escape abroad after the formalization of charges against him.

The Vigilance Bureau initiated a case of fraud related to land allotment against Manpreet Badal, alongside five other accused individuals. Seeking to evade arrest, Badal had sought anticipatory bail from the court. Vigilance officers conducted a raid at his residence in Badal village of Muktsar; however, Badal was not found at the location. Meanwhile, three individuals, Rajiv Kumar, Amandeep Singh, and Vikas Arora, were arrested in connection with the case.

The FIR registered by the Vigilance clearly outlines that Manpreet Badal purchased stamp papers worth Rs 100 each on September 30, 2021, and subsequent contracts were written on October 4, 2021. Both contracts had the same witness. The Bathinda Development Authority (BDA) issued an allotment letter for the plot in the names of Rajiv Kumar and Vikas Arora on October 8, 2021.

The case stems from a complaint lodged by Saroop Chand Singla, former MLA of Bathinda City, against Manpreet Singh Badal and others. The complaint alleges that, during his tenure as Finance Minister from 2018 to 2021, Badal used his influence to purchase two plots near Model Town Phase-1 Bathinda, causing a substantial financial loss to the government. The complaint also highlights fraudulent practices during the bidding of plots in 2021, pointing to misleading information disseminated to deter public participation in the bidding process.