Sukhbir Badal indicates SAD-BJP alliance firm in Punjab

Sukhbir Singh Badal indicates SAD-BJP alliance firm in Punjab

Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) party President Sukhbir Singh Badal. (AFP Photo)

 Shiromani Akali Dal chief Sukhbir Singh Badal on Monday indicated that the alliance with the BJP was in place in Punjab, days after its ally decided to contest the Delhi elections alone.

Asked whether the SAD and BJP would fight the 2022 assembly elections separately, Badal told reporters in Amritsar that "these are just in the media and I have been hearing such reports for the last 20 years".

Hitting out at the Congress-led state government for not sticking to its election promise of giving free smartphones on January 26, he said, "I want to tell you that they (Cong-led govt) will not give anything (to people). They are just giving dates. People of Punjab will send them packing after two years".

Education minister Vijay Inder Singla had said on Sunday in Patiala that he was expecting that the free smartphones would be given to the youth before March 31.

Badal alleged that drug and sand mining mafias were “proliferating” under the alleged “patronage” of Congress ministers in Punjab.

“The DGP has no control over Punjab Police while lower rank officers-- DSP and SHOs were working at the behest of Congress leaders. I can give you details of many cases in which Congress leader got drug suppliers released,” alleged Badal.

Lashing out at the state government, SAD chief said the Congress led government was hiding its “failures” under the excuse of empty coffers.

“We ran government under the leadership of (Parkash Singh) Badal sahib and never gave a statement of empty coffers,” said Badal, adding the state saw "unprecedented" development under their regime.

“But Captain sahib is not accessible,” he said slamming Chief Minister Amarinder Singh.

On the issue of CAA, Badal said his party was in favour of the amended Citizenship Act which was why it voted in favour of it.

But at the same time his party wanted the Muslim community be included in the CAA.

“The SAD follows principles of Guru Sahib who always preached 'Sarbat Da Bhala' (welfare of all) and no discrimination. This nation is a united country and it belongs to people of all religions,” he said.

The SAD had earlier announced in Delhi that it would not contest the Delhi polls next month after it was asked by ally Bharatiya Janata Party to change its stand on the contentious Citizenship (Amendment) Act. 

  On Punjab CM opposing the CAA, Badal asked Amarinder Singh whether he did not want thousands of persecuted Sikhs, Hindus, Jains and others in Pakistan, Bangladesh and Afghanistan get relief under the amended Citizenship Act.

Badal accused Singh of following “orders” of the Gandhi family to “save his chair”.

Badal also slammed rebel Akali leader Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa and other splinter groups like SAD (Taksali), accusing them of trying to weaken the SAD. 

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