A day after taking oath as the new chief minister of Punjab, Bhagwant Mann on Thursday, 17 March, took to social media and announced that an anti-corruption helpline will be launched on 23 March – Shaheed Divas, the day Bhagat Singh, Shivaram Rajguru, and Sukhdev Thapar were hanged by the British.
He added that people of the state will be able to lodge complaints on corruption via WhatsApp.
Mann said in a tweet in Hindi, "On Shaheed Divas I'll launch a helpline that'll be my personal WhatsApp number. In Punjab, if someone demands a bribe from you, don't refuse, make a video/audio recording and send it to that number. My office will investigate and no culprit will be spared."
He ended the tweet saying, "Corruption will no longer work in Punjab."
Earlier, Mann had said, "A very big decision will be taken today in the interest of Punjab. No one in the history of Punjab would have taken such a decision till date. I'll announce shortly...," Mann wrote in Hindi on Twitter.
Meanwhile, Mann also addressed his maiden meeting after assuming charge as the chief minister of the state, urging the top brass of state civil and police administration to discharge their duties as public servants in the letter and spirit.
Following the announcement, Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) chief Arvind Kejriwal congratulated the people of Punjab and said, "When someone asks you for a bribe then don't say no instead record the conversation and send the video/audio to the WhatsApp number. We assure you that immediately strict action will be taken."
The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader took oath as the 17th chief minister of Punjab on Wednesday, 16 March, at Khatkar Kalan, the ancestral village of freedom fighter Bhagat Singh, becoming the first non-Congress, non-Akali CM of the state.
In his first address as CM, Mann repeatedly mentioned Bhagat Singh, saying that the late freedom fighter has "opened an account in our hearts".
Mann's Swearing-In Ceremony
Mann's swearing-in was attended by Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and other senior AAP leaders. People from across the state, estimated to be around 3 lakh, were present to witness the mammoth swearing-in ceremony.
The AAP recorded a thumping victory in the Assembly polls by winning 92 of the 117 seats. The Congress party could only win 18 seats, a massive decline from the 77 it had won in 2017, while the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) could manage to garner only three seats. Mann won from Dhuri by a margin of over 58,000 votes. He resigned as Lok Sabha MP on Tuesday.
Earlier, Mann had said that no government office would carry photographs of the chief minister. Instead, photos of Bhagat Singh and BR Ambedkar will be put up on the walls of all government offices.