With relations between Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) getting sour every day, the decision-making process in the BJP on alliance with the SAD for the municipal corporation Bathinda (MCB) seemed to be doldrums.
On Monday, when president of the district unit of the BJP Parminder Goyal was supposed to attend a press conference on declaring the SAD-BJP alliance formula for the MCB polls, he was attending a meeting of the 11-member core group of the BJP.
However, he found himself isolated in the core group meeting as most members accused him of not taking the local leaders in confidence before taking a decision on the alliance with the SAD for MCB polls.
When Goyal was facing the ire of core group members, SAD MLA Sarup Chand Singla was making repeated calls on his mobile phone to come to attend the press conference. Goyal found himself helpless even to respond to phone calls.
Also, all the members did not attend the core group meeting. Some core group members also demanded his resignation as the unit chief.
Making last-minute arrangement, Goyal sent district media in-charge Varinder Sharma to the press conference for damage control.
However, it also backfired as Sharma later claimed that he went to the press conference only to give a message to Singla that Goyal will not be able to come to the press conference for some reasons, but the alliance was intact.
"I was not there to interact with the media. I was also taken by surprise when a SAD leader made me sit in the press conference," said Sharma. Meanwhile, ditched by BJP, Sarup Chand Singla claimed at the press conference that the old alliance formula would work in the MCB polls.
"It is not so simple to accept the SAD as Big Brother after raising aspirations of workers too high. Our leaders are issuing statements everyday against the SAD leadership and we are being made to tell the people that we have no objection in repeating the 2009 formula. It is not so simple. We are answerable to the public," said a core group member.