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Haryana CM Khattar keeps Sports portfolio held by Minister Sandeep Singh

Manohar Lal Khattar will keep the sports portfolio held by former Hockey player Sandeep Singh who stepped down after sexual misconduct charges.

Sandeep Singh Hockey

Former India hockey team captain Sandeep Singh, on whom the Bollywood film 'Soorma' was made (File Photo/HI)



Updated: 7 Jan 2023 6:12 PM GMT

The Sports portfolio which was given up by Haryana Minister Sandeep Singh following allegations of sexual harassment against him by a woman coach will now be held by Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar.

Haryana Governor Bandaru Dattatreya on Saturday allocated the portfolio of Sports and Youth Affairs to Khattar in addition to his existing portfolios with immediate effect, according to an official notification. It added that Singh will cease to hold the portfolio of Sports and Youth Affairs.

"The Governor of Haryana, on the advice of the Chief Minister, is pleased to allocate, with immediate effect, the portfolio of Sports and Youth Affairs to Shri Manohar Lal, Chief Minister, Haryana, in addition to his existing portfolios," the notification said.

Singh gave up the Sports portfolio on Sunday, saying he has taken the step on moral grounds. He claimed that the charges levelled against him by the woman coach were baseless. However, he had not resigned as a minister of the BJP government.

A few days ago, Khattar had said with Singh being the Sports minister, an issue might be raised that an impartial inquiry is not taking place. Therefore, Singh will not remain a Sports minister and he has been removed so that a proper and fair inquiry takes place, he had said.

However, the notification was issued on Saturday. Singh, a first-time MLA, was booked under sections 354 (assault or use of criminal force against a woman with intent to outrage her modesty), 354 A (sexual harassment), 354 B (compelling her to be naked), 342 (wrongful confinement) and 506 (criminal intimidation) of the Indian Penal Code (IPC) on a complaint of the woman coach. The Chandigarh Police has set up a Special Investigation Team to conduct a probe into the case.

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