Punjab chief parliamentary secretary (CPS) Virsa Singh Valtoha on Thursday advised the BJP MLA Navjot Kaur Sidhu to quit as CPS if she had any problems with the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) instead of trying to harm the SAD-BJP coalition so as to further the personal ambitions of her family.
Commenting on Dr Sidhu's statement at Chandigarh on Wednesday urging the BJP to walk out of the alliance, Valtoha felt that she was living in a fool's paradise and day-dreaming about the future role of her husband (former MP Navjot Singh Sidhu) in Punjab politics just for their personal gains.
Urging the BJP leader to introspect whether she has been true to herself, her party and the coalition government, the Akali CPS sought to know why she and her husband did not campaign for their political guru, Arun Jaitely (now union minister) during the parliamentary elections.
He claimed that the Sidhu couple's relatives were seen campaigning for Congress candidate Capt Amarinder Singh, first in Amritsar and later for his wife Preneet Kaur during the assembly bypoll in Patiala.
Valotha also sought to know why her husband had thanked the senior SAD leadership for "saving his turban (honour)" when he managed to win the 2009 Lok Sabha election against O P Soni (Cong) by a wafer-thin margin due to the massive lead from Akali-held assembly segments.
"If you cannot answer these questions, then you should not point fingers at alliance partners", he added.
On Dr Sidhu's advice that the BJP should go it alone in Punjab, the Akali leader sought to remind her that her party seniors had made it clear that the alliance was there to stay. He went on to claim that the BJP CPS was working as part of the Congress' 'divide and rule' game plan as well as "grand visions" for her family.
Commenting on Dr Sidhu's claims of the popularity of her husband, Valtoha pointed out that in his maiden election in 2004, Sidhu won from Amritsar by a margin of over 1 lakh votes. However in 2009, Sidhu just managed to scrape through by a mere 6,000-odd votes, he said while reminding the BJP CPS that her victory in 2012 assembly polls too was due to the presence of a Congress rebel from Amritsar East.
" The true barometer of Dr Sidhu's popularity was also judged by the people in the recent parliamentary elections when Jaitely trailed by 34,000 seats from her assembly segment. Why did you and your husband not show any concern for Jaitely's candidature", he asked.
The Akali leader sought to remind the BJP leader that the SAD-BJP alliance happened when there was a degree of mistrust between two communities (Sikhs and Hindus). Instead of appreciating the peace and communal harmony brought in due to the coalition between the two communities, Dr Sidhu is working to break this bond, he claimed.
Urging the BJP CPS to play her cards upfront instead of trying to mislead the people, Valtoha said, "You are neither the BJP president nor consulted on alliance issues by your own party and neither are you a part of any alliance coordination committee. You should clarify whether you are in sync with your senior leaders in Delhi or not. However, if you still want to persist in trying to mislead the people you should quit your post to end the embarrassment being caused to your party as well as the alliance by your maverick deeds".