SAD disowns leaders accused of assault

 Punjab’s ruling Shiromani Akali Dal here on Wednesday disowned their three youth leaders accused of assaulting a senior police officer and his NRI friend at a nightclub in Ludhiana.

Assistant inspector general S S Mand was assaulted at the nightclub in Ludhiana on Monday and was admitted to a hospital with serious injuries in his leg. Akali Dal spokesman Daljeet Singh Cheema said Maninder Pal Singh, alias Sunny Goodwill Johar, accused of attacking the police officer in Ludhiana and his NRI friend was not an office bearer or member of the Youth Akali Dal.

Cheema said the Youth Akali Dal had expelled Johar, who was a senior vice-president, Rishi Banda, vice-president (both from Ludhiana) and Jaskirat Singh, vice-president from Amritsar for “anti-party activities” on May 29.

Youth Akali Dal disciplinary committee chairman Param Bans Singh Romana said all the three had been expelled for anti-party activities during the Ludhiana Municipal Corporation polls.

Leaders of the opposition Congress had claimed that the assaulters were Akali Dal leaders who are close associates of Punjab’s revenue minister and Youth Akali Dal president Bikram Singh Majithia, a brother-in-law of Punjab’s deputy chief minister Sukhbir Singh Badal.
The Akali Dal even termed the attack on Mand “as a deep-rooted conspiracy of the Congress in the state whose aim is only to tarnish the image of Punjab”.

Treasurer N K Sharma said the Congress’ tactics were “to distract the attention of public from total breakdown of law and order situation in the Capital where chief minister Sheila Dikshit and Union home minister Sushilkumar Shinde were blaming each other in the rape case”.

Sharma said the incident at Ludhiana had been carried out by the expelled leaders of the party “who have been paid by the Congress to do so”.

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