Congress today appointed party secretary Asha Kumari as its in-charge of poll-bound Punjab to succeed Kamal Nath days after he resigned following an opposition uproar but the choice triggered a controversy over her conviction in a land grab case.
Kumari, who is an MLA from Dalhousie in Himachal Pradesh, was given one-year imprisonment by a Chamba court, besides being fined Rs 8,000 in February this year but is currently on bail. An AICC secretary and four-time MLA, Kumari was facing trial in the case for over a decade along with six other persons.
Assembly elections are due in Punjab next year. Kamal Nath, a veteran Congress leader, had to quit as AICC in- charge of Punjab within three days after his appointment this month in the wake of an uproar by BJP, SAD and AAP over his alleged role in the 1984 anti-Sikh riots. Kumari has served in various capacities in the party.