As his disciple singer-turned- politician Balkar Sidhu refused to withdraw his nomination papers from Talwandi Sabo as Independent, it has become more difficult for the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) member of Parliament Sadhu Singh to defend his another close aide and party office-bearer Sandeep Handa.
Sadhu Singh had been making contradictory excuses to defend after Handa was found assisting Balkar Sidhu while he was filing nomination papers as Independent by disobeying the AAP's decision to field Baljinder Kaur as its candidate.
Sadhu Singh has also been accusing the media of maligning his image.
Though there has been clear evidence that Handa had accompanied Balkar to file nomination, Sadhu Singh said, "Some people have been managing news against us. The photos, showing Handa accompanying Balkar Sidhu, are needed to be verified. There is a deliberate propaganda against us by some people."
When reminded that pictures clearly showed Handa in the SDM's room while Balkar was filing the papers, Sadhu Singh said, "Handa must be there to force Balkar to withdraw his nomination."
Both excuses given by Sadhu Singh are contradictory in nature and show his desperate effort to save Handa.
Balkar Sidhu was also close to Sadhu Singh and he campaigned for his teacher in parliamentary elections. However, now his refusal to Sadhu Singh's request to withdraw nomination has surprised many.
"I told Balkar to take back papers. But he refused. I will campaign for the party candidate," said Sadhu Singh.
When asked if the episode would hurt the image of the AAP, he said, "It happens in all political parties. It is a process. Party cadres will go with the party candidate in Talwandi Sabo," said Sadhu Singh.
Sadhu Singh had no clear answer on what is different with AAP in Punjab if it works like other established political parties.