The Congress meeting to make preparations for celebrating the birth anniversary of Dalit icon Dr BR Ambedkar on Thursday was marred by murmurs that for Muktsar’s Maghi Mela rally, a senior party leader had taken money from liquor baron Shiv Lal Doda, an accused in the killing of Dalit youth Bheem Sain at Abohar.
The meeting at Congress Bhawan here was attended by AllIndia Congress Committee (AICC) general secretary in charge of Punjab, Shakeel Ahmad; secretary Harish Chaudhary, Punjab Congress president Captain Amarinder Singh, new party member Manpreet Singh Badal and several legislators. Recalling the Abohar murder, former state Congress Legislature Party (CLP) leader and Abohar legislator Sunil Jakhar recited a couplet that meant that the enemy was within — words that set off a buzz at the meeting that he was referring to a senior party leader from Malwa who had allegedly taken money for the Maghi rally from Doda.
Jakhar said he would raise the matter with the party leadership. He had given the Maghi rally a miss. He confirmed that Dalit issues had been discussed in the context of Ambedkar’s birth anniversary celebrations. On Thursday, the Congress leaders decided to hold a twoday Dalit conclave in Ludhiana from February 15, besides a yatra from all districts to culminate at Doaba in March-end or early April.