Premier Jim Prentice issued the following statement today:
“Recently, troubling allegations have been made against Naresh Bhardwaj, the Associate Minister of Persons with Disabilities and the MLA for Edmonton-Ellerslie. While these allegations remain unproven, they must be treated seriously.
“I spoke to Mr. Bhardwaj this morning. Following our discussion, he indicated his desire to step away from his role as Associate Minister while he works to clear his name.
“I have been made aware that Mr. Bhardwaj has filed a statement of claim against the individual making a criminal allegation against him, and that an investigation has been initiated by the Progressive Conservative Association of Alberta.
“While these processes take their course, Mr. Bhardwaj will remain a member of the Progressive Conservative caucus.”