GK’s Delhi meeting with Chandumajra raises brows
Expelled SAD leader invites ex-MP for a meeting of rebel Akali leaders in Delhi tomorrowUpdated: Jan 16, 2020 23:47 IST
A meeting between former Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) MP Prem Singh Chandumajra and former Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee (DSGMC) president Manjit Singh GK on Thursday in Delhi raised many eyebrows.
GK, who was expelled from the SAD last year for allegedly usurping gurdwara body funds, has invited Chandumajra for a meeting of rebel Akali leaders in Delhi on Saturday.
“His (Chandumajra’s) conscience must be pricking him, so we want him to join us and be part of the real Akali Dal, rather than the one under the control of the Badals,” GK told HT.
However, Chandumajra, who is SAD general secretary, downplayed the meeting saying that he was taken by surprise and he had no information that GK was coming to meet him.
“Why would I invite him (GK) to my place? And why is he inviting me to the rebels’ meeting?” asked Chandumajra attempting to put himself in a safe zone at a time when the party is facing a rebellion. The SAD recently suspended its former secretary general Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa and his son Parminder Dhindsa, former finance minister, for anti-party activities.
“I don’t know why he (GK) brought with him cameramen and clicked the pictures, and those pictures were made viral,” said Chandumajra.
The pictures became the talking point in political and bureaucratic circles in Punjab.
“I told him that he was welcome in the new Akali set-up which is real and we will work on the ethos and traditions of the party,” said GK.
He said Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa, Parminder Dhindsa, Rattan Singh Ajnala, Ranjit Singh Brahmpura, Sewa Singh Sekhwan, Bir Devinder Singh, Gen JJ Singh and HS Phoolka have been invited to Saturday’s meeting. “I am sure most of them will take part in the meeting which will hold deliberations on celebrating the centenary of Akali Dal in December.”
“We welcome him (Chandumajra) in case he wants to join us for the larger cause of Akali Dal,” said Parminder Dhindsa.
However, SAD leaders sought to downplay the issue. Rajya Sabha MP Naresh Gujaral and former minister Maheshinder Singh Grewal said Chandumajra would not leave the party and no one should object to party leaders meeting people of varied interests and ideologies.
Notably, Chandumajra had denied a statement issued by the SAD under his name on Tuesday. In the statement, Chandumajra and Balwinder Singh Bhundar were quoted as asking Dhindsa Senior to explain his conduct to the people for having won only one election in 35 years.
On Wednesday, Chandumajra claimed that he was not privy to any such statement, causing embarrassment to the party.