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channi: Helicopter ‘grounded by Modi rally’, Channi cries foul | India News – Times of India


CHANDIGARH: Punjab chief minister Charanjit Singh Channi claimed that he was denied permission to fly in his helicopter two times on Monday – first to join party leader Rahul Gandhi‘s rally in Hoshiarpur from Chandigarh and later to travel from Sujanpur to attend a public meeting in Jalandhar – due to flying restrictions in view of Prime Minister Narendra Modi‘s rally in Jalandhar.
Speaking to TOI over phone, Channi said, “I am the CM of the state and not a terrorist. The reasons are political, an attempt to unnecessarily harass me and stop me from campaigning. We are being stopped in our own state. The PM himself said in his speech that he could not fly due to Rahul Gandhi’s visit in 2014. Besides, he is upset with me due to the incident in Ferozepur during his last visit. It is an attempt to take revenge on me, on the farmers and on Punjabis. But whatever they might do, I will remain steadfast with the Punjabis. I am not afraid – they have tried to stop me today even if they try to harm me, or even kill me, even then I have no fear.”
He added, “I could not go for Rahul Gandhi’s rally as a ‘no flying zone’ was declared in view of the PM’s visit. My four hours were wasted. I was not given clearance. I had permission to fly at 11 and land at Hoshiarpur but it was rejected. People understand the motives, the politics that are being played out.”
Later in the day, Channi’s chopper was grounded yet again at Sujanpur, from where he had to leave for Jalandhar. Channi said, “We already had the permission, but were not allowed to take off. I had come and sat in the helicopter. Later, a go-ahead was received to leave for Sujanpur by the chopper but not for Jalandhar. They said I could not leave before 6pm. I had to leave by road.”
Former PCC chief Sunil Jakhar alleged that it was sheer injustice to an elected CM, who was being denied his right to campaign.
Appealing to the EC to take note of Channi not being allowed to use airspace, he told his audience at the Hoshiarpur rally, “Today, Channi was also to come here. It’s a shame that the Centre cancelled the permission.”





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