Questioning the Shiromani Akali Dal's support to BJP's prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi, the opposition Congress in the Punjab assembly on Thursday sought to know the ruling party's stand on the ideology of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS).
"You praised Modi, are you in agreement with the RSS agenda?" asked Congress legislator Kuljit Nagra during the debate on the governor's address in the House.
Unfazed by the Congress' attack, however, chief minister Parkash Singh Badal and other SAD MLAs hailed Modi as the country's future prime minister.
"Modi is an RSS man and the idealogy of the RSS cannot be imposed on the Sikhs," Nagra stated, while referring to the controversial move of the Gujarat government on taking the possession of the agricultural lands of the Sikhs and other Punjabi farmers living in Kutch area of the state.
Senior Congress legislator Lal Singh sought to know the latest stand of the BJP on the Ram Mandir issue. "The BJP, which sought the people's mandate on the issue of Ram Mandir in Ayodhya in previous polls and played a communal card, is silent on the issue this time around," he said.
As the Congress's assertions on this matter irked the BJP MLAs, chief minister Badal, in his reply to the debate, hailed Modi as a capable leader for the prime minister's post.
"Modi saheb will become the prime minister and the Congress will be wiped out from the country after the Lok Sabha elections," he added.
Defending Modi on the issue of Punjabi farmers living in Kutch, he said, "The law that has led the officers to act (taking over the lands) was made by the previous Congress government there. I hope the Gujarat government would resolve the issue soon."
Bibi Jagir Kaur (SAD) also hailed Modi as a capable leader to lead the nation and the best alternative to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh.
She said the Sikh community could never forgive the Congress for the brutal killings of the Sikhs in 1984. "Several Congress leaders were identified in those organised killings of the Sikhs," she said.