Ashwani Sharma takes over as state BJP chief

Published on Jan 17, 2020 11:08 PM IST

Party leaders push for contesting 2022 assembly polls alone, and not in alliance with SAD

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Hindustan Times, Chandigarh | ByGagandeep Jassowal, Jalandhar

Former Pathankot MLA Ashwani Sharma on Friday took over as the new president of the BJP’s Punjab unit after being elected unanimously at a party function in Jalandhar.

Addressing workers in the presence of party’s national vice-president Vinay Sahasrabuddhe and other senior leaders, Sharma said, “We need to forge a person-to-person connect. I will soon visit every district to strengthen the party at the grassroots level. We should stand united for the party.”

Former minister Master Mohan Lal said the party should contest the 2022 assembly elections alone, and not in an alliance with the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD). “If the party can win elections in Haryana, Himachal Pradesh and can form government in Jammu and Kashmir, it should not rely on the SAD in Punjab. We have long been the sidekick of the Akalis but it is high time we show our strength,” he added.

Party leader Brij Lal Rinwa said he wanted to see a BJP leader becoming the next chief minister of Punjab. Former cabinet minister Manoranjan Kalia said the expectations of Punjab BJP workers will be met in the next assembly elections.

Senior party leader Madan Mohal Mittal said, “We will contest on at least 59 seats while the Akalis should field nominees from 58 segments, because it’s the BJP, not SAD, who is the elder brother.

Citing the murder of a Sangrur Dalit man incident, Sahasrabuddhe said the Amarinder Singh-led government was promoting Naxalism in the state.
State govt’s anti-CAA
resolution slammed

Terming it as ‘black day’ for Punjab, Sharma flayed the Congress government for passing resolution seeking repeal of the Citizenship Amendment Act (CAA)

“Amarinder forgot the recent attack at Nanakana Sahib, the birthplace of Guru Nanak, first Sikh master,” he added.

He slammed the state government for failing to fulfill its pre-poll promises. “There is no such thing like government in Punjab. People only come to know about government when there is a power tariff hike”, added Sharma.

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