With stakes high for the ruling Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) in the assembly bypolls for two constituencies in the state scheduled to be held on August 21, party president and deputy chief minister Sukhbir Singh Badal, on Tuesday, deputed senior party leaders, including several cabinet ministers, for Talwandi Sabo to manage the campaigning for the byelection.
At a party meeting, attended by of ministers, chief parliamentary secretaries, MLAs and other senior party leaders from Bathinda, Mansa, Barnala, Amritsar, Fazilka, Ferozepur, Faridkot and Moga districts, Sukhbir asked the leaders to shift their base to Talwandi Sabo from August 1 onward till the bypoll is over to ensure the victory of party candidate Jeet Mohinder Singh Sidhu. Sidhu was also present at the meeting. He will file nomination papers on August 1.
The party leaders, who have been deployed to manage the bypoll in Talwandi Sabo, include rural development minister Sikandar Singh Maluka, revenue minister Bikram Singh Majithia, public works department minister Janmeja Singh Sekhon, health minister Surjit Kumar Jyani, Rajya Sabha MP Balwinder Singh Bhunder, transport minister Ajit Singh Kohar, animal husbandry minister Gulzar Singh Ranike, CPS Mantar Singh Brar, MLA Virsa Singh Valotha, former Faridkot MP Paramjit Kaur Gulshan, former minister Sewa Singh Sekhwan and other party leaders.
The party has divided the whole constituency into 13 zones and one senior party leader has been made in-charge of each zone.
Later, while talking to mediapersons, he said that interference by the Congress in religious affairs of the Sikhs will be an issue in the byelections.
Meanwhile, Sukhbir said that union food processing and industries minister Harsimrat Kaur Badal will also campaign for the party candidates after the ongoing session of Parliament comes to an end. She represents Bathinda parliamentary constituency under which Talwandi Sabo assembly segment falls.