Apparently demoralised after losing the Punjab assembly elections, senior leadership of the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) skipped the party’s political conference at Anandpur Sahib on the occasion of Hola Mohalla on Sunday.
The Akalis had proposed to hold the conference, even as the Congress had decided against it. SAD secretary Dr Daljit Singh Cheema had even held a series of meetings with party workers to oversee preparations of the conference.
Only Lok Sabha member from Anandpur Sahib Prem Singh Chandumajra and Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) president Kirpal Singh Badungar turned up at the thinly attended conference along with a few second-rung leaders. SAD patron Parkash Singh Badal and president Sukhbir Singh Badal were both conspicuous by their absence, and so were other senior leaders of the party.
Addressing the conference, Chandumajra said the Congress must fulfil promises it made to the electorate ahead of the polls and continue the development works undertaken by the SAD-BJP government in the past 10 years.
SAD (Amritsar)’s political conference was addressed by its general secretary Prof Mohinder Pal Singh. He said the new Congress government must take steps to arrest those responsible for desecrating the holy book and also check drug menace in the state.
Meanwhile, thousands of devotees paid their obeisance at Takht Sri Kesgarh Sahib and other historical gurdwaras in Anandpur Sahib and Kiratpur Sahib on the second day of Hola Mohalla. International Sikh Martial Art Academy also organised a ‘gatka’ competition.