SAD maintains stand that all religions should be included in CAA
Rajya Sabha member Naresh Gujral says SAD abides by coalition dharma so isn’t contesting Delhi elections, but when BJP approached it, the party extended supportUpdated: Jan 31, 2020 16:20 IST
The Shiromani Akali Dal on Friday reiterated its stand that the Citizenship Amendment Act should not specify any particular religion, but should be for all religious communities.
The party had voted in favour of the contentious law in Parliament, but it maintained that it was against keeping out any religious community from the Act’s purview.
“Rather than specifying the religion it should be for all religions, including Muslims, that’s what SAD president Sukhbir Singh Badal had said in Parliament as well,” SAD Rajya Sabha member Naresh Gujral said.
“We abide by the coalition dharma and that’s why we decided not to contest elections in Delhi, but later the BJP approached us, so we extended support to them,” he said.
Another party MP Balwinder Singh Bhunder raised the issue in the all-party meeting on Thursday called by the government.
“I repeated my party’s stand that all religions, including Muslims, should be included in the CAA,” he said.
Both leaders, however, said the party supported the law as it also benefits members of Sikh communities from Afghanistan and Pakistan.
BJP president JP Nadda on Wednesday had said that its ally, SAD, which had decided not to contest the Delhi assembly polls over differences with the saffron party, will support his party in the February 8 elections.
The Akali Dal’s decision to not contest the polls had triggered concerns in the BJP that it may alienate a section of Sikh voters, which can influence more than a dozen seats in the national capital.