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Punjab Open Debate Highlights: It was CM Bhagwant Mann vs 'Empty Chairs'
Published : Nov 1, 2023, 7:36 am IST
Updated : Nov 1, 2023, 1:45 pm IST
Punjab Open Debate
Punjab Open Debate

Punjab CM Bhagwant Mann had given an open invitation for debate viaTwitter.

Punjab Open Debate 'Main Punjab Bolda Haan' in Ludhiana Highlights: Punjab open debate began on Wednesday at Punjab Agriculture University, Ludhiana. However, it was only Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann who came up for the debate while no other opposition leader showed up. 

It may be recalled that Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann had challenged the opposition leaders, including BJP State President Sunil Jakhar, Shiromani Akali Dal president Sukhbir Singh Badal, Punjab Congress President Amrinder Singh Raja Warring and Congress' Partap Singh Bajwa, for an open debate on various issues. 


He had said, "Let's debate live on all issues. You can also bring paper with you but I will speak orally. November 1st 'Punjab Day' will be a good day... you will get enough time for preparation." 


Punjab Open Debate 'Main Punjab Bolda Haan' in Ludhiana Highlights: 

13:15 pm: Punjab CM further stated that "Parkash Singh Badal acquired the land for the construction of SYL in a very short time. CM of Haryana also thanked Badal Sahab in the Haryana Vidhan Sabha for this anti-Punjab decision. 


13:00 pm: He further said, "Parkash Singh Badal formed the government in 1977 and remained in power for 3 years. During this period, the Badal government did not stop the construction work of SYL even once. Instead, through letter number 23,617, another demand of Rs 3 crore was taken for the construction of SYL. The Akali Dal government received Rs 1.5 crore from the Haryana government to build the SYL."

12:45 pm: CM Bhagwant Mann said, "It has happened for the first time that three parties Congress-Akali Dal and BJP have been out of power. This is also the first time that no one has questioned them, otherwise they used to mingle with each other and did not question each other. But today I will put all the raw pieces in front of you."

12:28 pm: CM Mann slammed Congress and Shiromani Akali Dal on the issue of SYL. He said, "Badal Sahab failed to stop SYL."


12:24 pm: Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann thanked those came up for the open debate. He said, "this is not a matter of victory or defeat, it is a consideration of the serious issues of Punjab. The opponents who are afraid of the questions made excuses to run away from the debate. 

He further started the debate from the issue of SYL. 

12:16 pm: Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann begins his speech. 


12:01 pm: Punjab Open debate begins; it's CM Bhagwant Mann vs 'Empty Chairs'. No other opposition leader came for debate. 

11:59 am: "Curfew imposed. Public entry banned. Anti-riot teams deployed. Representatives of organisations/associations detained. Impartial media gagged. What kind of "OPEN" debate is it?" asks Sukhbir Singh Badal. 

11:50 am: "It is 1st November not 1st April Mann Sahib. Why did you pull this humiliating prank on general public by extending an open invitation to them and then telling your police not let them enter the venue of debate. It is definitely not funny. If you had to address policemen in mufti, you could have done it in Phillaur Police Academy and saved Ludhiana this harassment," says Sunil Jakhar.

11:35 am: Former Punjab Chief Minister Charanjit Singh Channi stopped while he was on his way to Ludhiana's Punjab Agriculture University for open debate. 

11:20 am: Punjab's Leader of Opposition Partap Singh Bajwa releases video ahead of Open Debate.

11:12 am: Several farmers' organisation reaches Ludhiana for open debate. However, some farmer leaders have been detained. 

11:00 am: Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann reaches Ludhiana for big open debate. 

9:50 am: Stage is all set for Big Debate!

9:00 am: Heavy security deployment at the Punjab Agricultural University campus ahead of the open debate called by CM Bhagwant Mann on issues concerning the state at Dr Manmohan Singh Auditorium in Ludhiana.  The opposition parties have called the debate a "gimmick" and a "PR exercise" and accused the AAP government of "deviating" from real issues.

8:00 am: It is still not clear who among the opposition leaders will be coming up for the open debate 'Main Punjab Bolda Haan' in Punjab. 

7:45 am: Heavy security forces deployed in Ludhiana ahead of mega debate in an order to avoid any untoward situation. 

7:30 am: Punjab is all set for the debate as it is something which is happening for the first time. The whole Punjab is excited to see both the ruling and opposition party under one roof.  

Location: India, Punjab


Written ByRajan Nath



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