With the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) announcing lawyer HS Phoolka as its candidate from Ludhiana, the once SAD favourite has come under an attack as the ruling party started a campaign to discredit him for the fight to get justice for the 1984 riot victims.
Firing a salvo at Phoolka, deputy chief minister Sukhbir Badal on Monday said Phoolka charged fee for fighting the cases. "The SAD, SGPC and Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee paid Phoolka for fighting the cases. He is a lawyer and charged a heavy fee.
Earlier, he represented us, today he represents the AAP, and in future he can represent the Congress," said Sukhbir, adding that Phoolka was a professional lawyer, not a politician.
Joining the campaign, revenue minister Bikram Singh Majithia said, "The fight to get justice for riot victims was not only of Phoolka but of the SAD and Phoolka was only part of the struggle."
"The main credit of the fight against the riots accused goes to the SAD and our party is still continuing its fight against the Congress leaders who masterminded the riots," Majithia said at Sanghol.
Phoolka has been taking credit for the AAP forming a special investigation team to probe the riots and for his work as a lawyer to help the victims.
"People of Punjab will decide in the parliamentary elections as to who fought for the rights of the state. The AAP will not be able to pose a stiff challenge to the SAD-BJP in the state," Majithia said.
While lashing out at AAP leader Arvind Kejriwal for his resignation, Majithia termed Kejriwal as a stuntman. "Kejriwal worked as an opposition leader instead of as a chief minister and resigned as he was unable to keep the tall promises made to the public," said Majithia.