Peoples Party of Punjab (PPP) chief Manpreet Singh Badal has predicted a snap poll in Punjab next year as the “BJP will opt out of the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD)-led government”.
“The assembly elections in Punjab will be held in July-August next year, as the BJP will opt out of the SAD-led government. The BJP will not like to go into the polls in 2017 as a partner of the SAD in its crime and corruption,” he added.
Talking to mediapersons here on Wednesday, Manpreet said the BJP was already fed-up with the Akalis. “The BJP leadership will like to keep its reputation clean and not soil it in the company of the Akalis, he added.
When asked about other reasons that could push the BJP to going in for a snap poll, the PPP leader said the BJP was riding on a wave of popularity and the party would like to make full use of it in Punjab.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi came to power with a lot of promises and the people were expecting a lot from him, he added.
“Modi seems to have a luck favouring him. The global crash of oil prices led to a fall of petrol and diesel prices in India, but the common man gives the credit to Modi. Such factors will count in a snap
poll,” he added.
Manpreet felt that after the Delhi assembly polls, the BJP would definitely shift its attention towards Punjab. He, however, hoped that the BJP would not use “communal card” in Punjab in case of snap poll.
“Radical and hardliners have never succeeded in India and have always been rejected by the people. So I hope the BJP will not make use of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) or any other factor in Punjab,”
Asked if former MP Navjot Singh Sidhu was the BJP’s best bet in Punjab, the PPP leader said: “He is an honest and upright leader; however, at times he does not take an issue to its logical end, which is a drawback that he must get rid of.”
ED slow on Majithia
Replying to a question, Manpreet claimed that the Enforcement Directorate (ED) was going slow on summoning Punjab revenue minister Bikram Singh Majithia for questioning in the Patiala synthetic drug racket.
“With a friendly government at the Centre, Majithia has nothing to fear about. If he is innocent, then he should not hesitate to appear before the ED, this will add to his political stature,” he added.
Favours ties for local bodies poll
The PPP leader felt that all opposition parties, including the Congress, PPP, BSP, should form an alliance for the forthcoming municipal committees and councils and nagar panchayats elections.
“When there will be direct contests or lesser number of candidates, there are less chances of state officials favouring the ruling alliance,” he claimed.
Addressing workers meeting
Earlier, Manpreet addressed a workers meeting organised at Ajnala by PPP Amritsar district (rural) president Preet Inder Singh Dhillon.
He accused the SAD-BJP government of indulging in corruption. He said under the chief minister, Punjab had moved down the ladder instead of moving up.