In a statement opposed to the point of view of the Shiromani Akali Dal, Punjab BJP president Kamal Sharma on Tuesday advocated a memorial for the innocent people who died for maintaining peace in the state during the period of militancy.
Advocating that it would add to the peace of Punjab, Kamal Sharma claimed that the memorial for the innocent people would be a lesson for the future generations. "Two memorials, including the one regarding Operation Bluestar at Amritsar and the other one for Sikh victims of the 1984 riots at Delhi, have came up. There should also be a memorial for the victims, including judges, police officials, journalists, armymen, police personnel and politicians besides the common people, who were killed during militancy in Punjab. People who died during that period paid a heavy price to maintain peace, unity and integrity of the nation and should also be remembered," he said.
Kamal Sharma was in Bathinda to hold a meeting of the office-bearers of 11 districts of the Malwa region regarding the preparations for the Sankalp Rally at Pathankot on June 23, where Gujarat chief minister and newly-appointed chairman of BJP's national campaign committee, Narendra Modi will be present.
Kamal Sharma feigned ignorance about chief minister Prakash Singh Badal's statement, declining the need for any memorial for innocents who died in militancy period that could destroy peace in Punjab.
It may be mentioned that the Punjab Congress has raised this demand and the ruling SAD has countered it. However, the Congress' cause got support from unexpected quarters.
Divulging the details of Sankalp Rally at Pathankot, Kamal Sharma said BJP workers are excited about Modi's visit and they would reach the rally in large numbers. Along with Narendra Modi, chief minister Parkash Singh Badal, former Himachal Pradesh CM and Punjab BJP in-charge Shanta Kumar and other central BJP leaders will be present at the rally. Deputy CM Sukhbir Singh Badal will not be able to attend the rally as he is abroad.
It will be Narendra Modi's first visit to a state other than Gujarat after being crowned as head of BJP's election campaign committee at Goa. "The June 23 rally will leave a great impact at the national level," added Kamal Sharma.
"Modi will pay tributes to the founder of Bharatiya Jana Sangh Syama Prasad Mookerjee at Madhopur in Pathankot as this time it would be the 60th death anniversary of Mookerjee who fought against the permit raj while entering Jammu and Kashmir," the state BJP chief said.
Speaking on the breaking of 17-year-old alliance between BJP and JD (U), Sharma said, "The BJP already knew that JDU will be breaking the alliance for the mean interest and so they were ready for it. Long time back, JD (U) had a few MLAs and the BJP had double strength in the Bihar Vidhan Sabha but even then BJP gave the chief minister's post to JD (U). After the Lok Sabha polls, all the allies will be back in the NDA as the BJP will get a high number of seats."
Kamal Sharma was accompanied by senior party colleagues, including former MP Gurcharan Kaur Panjgrain, Sunil Singla, Mohit Gupta, Ashok Bharti, Mohan Lal and Gurbinder Bhagta, among others.