Tall claims of the ruling alliance of winning all the 13 Lok Sabha seats of state in the upcoming general elections notwithstanding, as local SAD leadership squarely blame the BJP for declining popularity graph owing to rampant corruption in civic body, non-development in the city and ignoring Akali workers.
Fissures in the ruling alliance partners, came into fore in the meeting of district (Urban) unit of SAD held late in the evening on Monday, convened by in-charge of parliamentary constituency Harish Rai Dhanda, to take stock of the preparations for upcoming Lok Sabha Poll.
Contrary to the agenda of meeting, which was to motivate workers to defeat Congress in parliamentary poll, SAD leaders indulged in BJP bashing only without uttering a single word against political enemy Congress.
About 15 SAD leaders addressed the gathering and almost each one of them criticised the local MLAs of BJP and deliberately ignoring them.
It is pertinent to mention here that in the city, there are total four elected MLAs and three assembly segments are being represented by BJP, besides heading the municipal corporation.
Senior Akali leader of the district, Manjit Singh Transporter, one of the early speaker, set the tone by openly criticising BJP for non-development in the city and saying that it was very difficult for SAD workers to demand vote from the public due to prevailing situation.
“BJP leadership is deliberately ignoring us, roads and other civic amenities are in a very bad shape and corruption in the local civic bodies, have left us faceless to demand votes from the people”, he said.
A circle Jathedar of SAD, went to the extent of accusing BJP leadership for humiliating Akali workers. “When workers go for any work to these elected MLAs, one of which is local bodies minister, no heed is given to their genuine grievances”, he added.
A veteran local Akali leader, Harinder Singh Kahlon said that all police and administrative officials of the district, consider only BJP leaders as their ‘political masters’ and advise SAD workers to route through them for redressal of their grievances.
“Let us approach party president Sukhbir Badal for his intervention to set right BJP leadership”, he appealed to the Akalis’ gathering.
Some of the SAD leaders, openly criticised the policy of regularisation of illegal colonies and said that how the party could expect votes from those, who are being financial overburdened by such policies.
Senior deputy mayor of the SAD, Kamaljit Singh Bhatia, known for his outburst against saffron party, did not mince any word to accuse BJP for non-development in the city and rampant corruption in the civic body.
“SAD-BJP was voted back due to development in the previous regime, but now we are faceless to demand votes from the people, as there is no development in the city”, Bhatia added.
Sensing anti-BJP mood of the Akali leaders, the lone SAD MLA in the city, Pargat Singh and Harish Rai Dhanda stood to pacify the gathering and assured that sentiments of workers would be conveyed to party high command.
“Now forget the difference with BJP leaders and we all should concentrate to ensure party’s win in the parliamentary election by getting united”, Dhanda appealed to party workers, in an attempt to motivate them.
Talking to HT, Dhanda said “Yes, SAD workers are feeling disgruntled and same would be conveyed to party president for better coordination between the alliance partners at district level too”.