Millennium Post

Kejriwal to kick-start Punjab campaign next month

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal will kick-start his Punjab campaign by addressing a mega rally in Muktsar next month, as the party gears up for polls in the state scheduled to be held in 2017.

The Delhi Chief Minister is also expected to spend a considerable time in Punjab from next year, party sources said.

The party is pitted against the Congress and the SAD-Akali Dal combine. “I will address a mega rally in Muktsar in Punjab on January 14,” Kejriwal told a news agency. The party, which is yet to project any chief ministerial candidate, is banking on Kejriwal’s image to wrest power in the state. 

In October, Kejriwal had visited Punjab, which was hit by protests due to desecration of Guru Granth Sahib. The party has been raising its voice against the problem of drug addiction and by raising issues related to farmers suicide and alleged irregularities in buying pesticides. After having made its presence felt in the state during the Lok Sabha elections, AAP had recently made structural changes in the state unit, which irked many in the party.

AAP had opened its account in the Lok Sabha by winning four seats in Punjab in 2014 general elections. However, two of its MPs -- Dharamvira Gandhi and Harinder Singh Khalsa -- have been suspended on the charge of anti-party activities.

To garner support from Punjabis residing abroad, AAP leaders Sanjay Singh and Ashutosh had visited Canada to woo NRIs.

“NRIs play a major role in Punjab polls as almost every household has someone who is working abroad, majority of which stay in USA, apart from UK, Australia and Malaysia. The party had reached out to NRIs even during Lok Sabha polls and this is practised even by other parties.

Badal calls Cong ‘ No. 1 enemy of Sikhs’, AAP ‘frustrated lot’
Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal on Sunday launched a scathing attack on Congress calling it the “number one enemy of Sikhs” and dismissed AAP as a “frustrated lot of novices” who have “failed” in Delhi.

Badal also alleged that some “irresponsible” political leaders were “hell bent” upon dividing the people on sectarian lines and “disintegrating” the country with the sole motive of pursuing their narrow vested interests. He was addressing a gathering after paying tributes on Martyrdom Day of Fateh Singh and Zoravar Singh - the younger Sahibzadas of 10th Sikh Guru Gobind Singh -- during the state- level Shaheedi Conference here.

Badal said, “The country, especially Punjab, was not in a position to bear the pangs of such turmoil anymore as it had already passed through turbulent times during Partition...” 

Branding Congress as “number one enemy of Sikhs”, the chief minister said it was an established fact that it had done lot of “injustice” to the state by depriving it of its capital, legitimate share in river waters, and Punjabi speaking areas. He said Congress had inflicted a “deep wound” on the Sikh psyche by attacking the Golden Temple and by “killing thousands of innocent Sikhs” during the 1984 riots. 
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