As a mark of protest, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), coalition partner of the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) in Punjab, has decided to maintain silence in the vidhan sabha during the budget session, which begins on Tuesday.
The BJP is "upset" with the SAD over not being "taken into confidence" over certain issues, such as the Operation Bluestar memorial at Harmandar Sahib, the SAD staking claim to the Amritsar mayor's post, and the move of the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee's (SGPC) to declare Balwant Singh Rajoana, on death row in former chief minister Beant Singh's assassination case, a living martyr.
"We would not support the SAD if the Congress corners the government in the assembly. The SAD would have to deal with the situation on its own," a BJP leader said on Monday, requesting anonymity.
When asked about lodging a protest in the Vidhan Sabha, state BJP president Ashwani Sharma said the party would do it at an appropriate time.
He demanded that the government should announce a financial package for newly-created districts. Pathankot and Fazilka districts were created during the previous SAD-BJP regime. While Sharma is the MLA from the Pathankot constituency, BJP's cabinet minister Surjit Jyani represents Fazilka.The BJP is also upset because it faced opposition in certain wards of Amritsar and Patiala during the recent municipal corporation polls. "Despite taking up the matter with chief minister Parkash Singh Badal, our workers were at the receiving end during the MC polls. So, we have the right to lodge a protest," another BJP leader said.
Daljit Singh Cheema, SAD spokesman, said, "They (BJP) would stand by us in the House. There are no issues between the coalition partners."