Other States

Amarinder trying to sabotage farmers’ agitation, says Akali Dal chief

Sukhbir Singh Badal.  

Shiromani Akali Dal president Sukhbir Singh Badal on Friday accused Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh of attempting to sabotage the farmers’ agitation by linking it with threats to national security.

The Chief Minister hit back, saying all the opposition parties in the State were playing politics with the lives of the farmers to further their own interests.

Mr. Sukhbir Badal asked the Chief Minister to share with the people the specific grounds or intelligence surrounding the threat to national security. He said “Capt. Singh is clearly dancing to someone else’s tune to paint the farmers as national security risk. His so called ‘warning’ on national security comes immediately after his suspicious meeting with a powerful Union Minister. Does he think the farmers and others in the country can’t see through his conspiratorial role against them?” quipped Mr. Sukhbir Badal.

Accusing the Akalis of doublespeak on farm laws, the Chief Minister said in a video statement that the ‘Badals’ had publicly done a U-turn on the issue. “All his life Parkash Singh Badal has been claiming that he represents the interests of farmers. Then why did his party support the Central ordinances after initially opposing them, and then did an about-turn and started publicly criticising the legislation?” said Capt. Singh.

The Chief Minister said that in his meeting, he had told Union Home Minister Amit Shah that the amendment Bills passed in the Punjab Vidhan Sabha were the solution to breaking the deadlock over the farmers’ issue as they were the essence of the State’s future. “I urged him to get the Bills approved by the President,” he said, adding that it was the third time he met Mr. Shah, including once to congratulate him on becoming Home Minister and the other two times for the sake of Punjab.

Capt. Singh also accused Aam Aadmi Party leader and Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal of twisting his statement on national security, pointing out that the statement was clearly made in reference to Pakistan and as the Home Minister of Punjab, it was his duty to apprise the Union Home Minister of the dangers of the prolonged agitation.

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Printable version | Jan 23, 2021 3:56:22 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/national/other-states/amarinder-trying-to-sabotage-farmers-agitation-says-akali-dal-chief/article33253336.ece

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