Delhi/ Chandigarh: Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) President Sukhbir Singh Badal today condemned the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) for instigating violence at Singhu and Ghazipur dharna sites in Delhi besides indulging in sloganeering like ‘desh ke gaddaron ko, goli maro saalon ko’ in communally sensitive areas in the national capital.
Addressing a press conference at Delhi, the SAD President said it was shocking that the BJP was deliberately creating a conflict zone at the ‘dharna’ sites by ferreting in its cadre under police protection to stone peacefully gathered farmers. He said this attempt by the BJP to show that “locals” were opposed to the ‘dharnas’ would harm national interest and could result in violence besides spoiling peace and communal harmony in the country.
Mr Sukhbir Badal also condemned BJP leaders for descending on communally sensitive areas in the national capital and leading mobs shouting slogans like “desh ke gaddaron ko, goli maro saalon ko”. He appealed to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Home Minister Amit Shah to stop BJP workers from instigating violence by such acts. He also asked whether such acts would promote violence or peace. “Does the central government want violence? Does it want communal clashes?” he asked.
The SAD President also appealed to all parties to unite to face this new threat which was aimed at tearing the social fabric of the country. “India belongs to everyone and not one party. Countrymen don’t need a certificate from any party or organization to prove their patriotism. The constitution guarantees us our rights and no one should try to take them away from us”.
Making it clear that the ongoing Kisan Andolan was a country wide stir in which farmers from all parts of the country were participating, Mr Badal said it was unfortunate that the central government was linking it with a single community and trying to derail it by using tyrannical methods. “The same methods were used to suppress countrymen by former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi during the period of Emergency for which act she was shunted out of power by the people”, he added.
Asserting that the responsibility of maintaining law and order was with the Prime Minister and the Home Minister, Mr Badal said “please stop the BJP cadre from instigating violence”. He also appealed to the PM to ensure peace. He also condemned the central government for misusing the Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA) against farmer leaders and journalists even as he appealed to the media not to show scenes which had the propensity to disturb the peace and encourage communal violence. He also put it on record that peace and communal harmony was at the core of the SAD’s philosophy and that the Sikh community also stood for ‘sarbat da bhala’ (welfare of mankind) as espoused by the Guru Sahiban.
Earlier in the day the SAD President along with party mps boycotted the President’s address to parliament and held a protest at its gates to demand repeal of the Agricultural Acts. Mr Badal also spoke to farmer leader Rakesh Takait and expressed solidarity with him and condemned the crude attempts of the central government to get the ‘dharna’ at Ghazipur lifted forcibly. A delegation of senior leaders including mp Balwinder Singh Bhundur, Delhi Gurdwara Committee President Manjinder Singh Sirsa and SAD Delhi President Harmit Singh Kalka also visited the Ghazipur protest site and honoured farmer leader Rakesh Takait and promised all support to him and the farmer cause. EOM