Ex-Akali minister Garcha, brother join Dhindsa camp
In yet another jolt to the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD), former Punjab minister Jagdish Singh Garcha and his brother Mann Singh Garcha on Thursday joined rebel leaders Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa and his son Parminder Singh Dhindsa.
An old loyalist of SAD patriarch Parkash Singh Badal and former member of party’s political affairs committee, Garcha along with Mann Singh and the latter’s son Harpreet Singh Garcha, a member of the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC), joined hands with the rebels at a workers’ meeting in Ludhiana’s Jawaddi locality.
The Garcha brothers slammed SAD chief Sukhbir Singh Badal, his wife Union minister Harsimrat Kaur Badal and former minister Bikram Majithia, accusing them of using the party for their personal gains.
“Sukhbir needs sycophants who earn money for him. He is not fit to lead the Akali Dal. Parkash Singh Badal made the mistake of his life by appointing his son as president of the party. Sukhbir has used SAD as his private company,” Jagdish Garcha, who once had a major stake in liquor business in Punjab, said.
He, however, did not utter anything against Parkash Singh Badal.
Addressing the media, Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa said more leaders are likely to join them in the coming days.
“The Badals have betrayed the ‘panth’ and the party. They even misused funds of ‘Guru ki Gulak’, which needs to be investigated. We are working to free the SGPC from the clutches of the Badals and will meet union home minister Amit Shah over the gurdwara body’s elections,” he added.
“The Congress government led by Captain Amarinder Singh did nothing for the state in the past three years. Amarinder is hand in glove with the Badals, as their buses continue to ply illegally and their cable business is still flourishing in Punjab,” he said.
Whether they are heading to form third front in Punjab, Dhindsa said they will take a call on this ahead of the 2022 assembly elections.
Parminder Dhindsa said the Badals suspended him from the party without issuing any notice. “Now, they are not replying to a letter of Vishan Sabha speaker over my demand for a separate seat and time to speak.
Also, former councillor Bhairaj Singh joined the Dhindsas, quitting the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP).