Modi rally: SAD gathering 1 lakh for Apr 24, BJP moves date

  • Sachin Sharma, Hindustan Times, Bathinda
  • Updated: Apr 19, 2014 18:44 IST

There seems to be a lack of communication between alliance partners Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) over the date of Narendra Modi rally in Punjab, as they expect the BJP prime ministerial candidate on different days.

The district SAD is making arrangements for April 24, the date that deputy chief minister Sukhbir Singh Badal announced, while the BJP says the programme is postponed to April 25. “We are unaware of any change in the schedule.

The party has not yet conveyed any,” said education minister and district SAD president Sikander Singh Maluka, who is overseeing the rally arrangements in Bathinda.

The SAD is mobilising 1-lakh people for the rally and a major chunk of this support will come from Bathinda parliamentary seat only, Maluka has said. “The party will also muster cadres from the nearby areas of other parliamentary constituencies, including Faridkot and Ferozepur.

The rally is being organised to boost the campaign of Harsimrat Kaur Badal, daughter-in-law of chief minister Parkash Singh Badal, for the Bathinda Lok Sabha seat. She faces challenge from her estranged brother-inlaw and Congress-PPP-CPI candidate, Manpreet Singh Badal.

Paramjit Kaur Gulshan, Sher Singh Ghubaya and Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa, Akali candidates in Faridkot, Ferozepur and Sangrur, respectively, also hope to share the stage with the BJP prime ministerial candidate.

Sarup Chand Singla, chief parliamentary secretary for excise and taxation and SAD legislator in Bathinda (urban) assembly segment, said Modi rally would be in Bathinda definitely but he was not sure whether it would be on April 24 or 25, as there might be a change in schedule.

He said he was not in touch with development because of being busy in campaigning.

Asked to react, state BJP president Kamal Sharma said the change of schedule to April 25 had been communicated to the SAD leadership, and it was up to them to pass on the message to their team.

District BJP president Parminder Goel said he had received the communication on Thursday but the change of schedule was to be communicated to the SAD leadership.

Police have received the communication about the new schedule, inspector general (IG) of police (Bathinda zone) Paramraj Singh Umranangal has confirmed.

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