Union Minister Hardeep Singh Puri has ruled out the possibility of the BJP reviving its alliance with the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) for the Lok Sabha polls next year.
The BJP remained in alliance with SAD for 25 years earlier but the SAD failed to come up to the expectations of the people of Punjab, Mr. Puri told reporters in Kapurthala on May 16.
The Union Minister for Housing and Urban Affairs and Petroleum and Natural Gas said the SAD has lost its credibility among voters in Punjab as shown in the recent Jalandhar by-election poll results and rejected the possibility of any alliance with the party.
Mr. Puri, however, said that if "some good leaders from SAD or those who had in recent times left the Akali Dal want to join the BJP and fight on the saffron party symbol then that is a different thing".
The Shiromani Akai Dal, which has faced an electoral decline since 2014, broke ties with the BJP in 2020 over the now-repealed Cental farm laws.
Recently, BJP's Punjab affairs in-charge Vijay Rupani had also said there was no possibility of an alliance with the Shiromani Akali Dal again.
Mr. Puri was speaking at Rail Coach Factory (RCF) after presiding over a Rozgar mela function.
Hitting out at the ruling Aam Aadmi Party in Punjab, the minister said that "freebies" would not help the State boost its economy as it is already under heavy debt.
On the debacle of BJP in the recently concluded Assembly election in Karnataka, the minister noted that while the party's vote share has not come down from 36%, it lost polls due to "some other reasons and would introspect" and rectify its mistakes.
The ministers gave away 210 appointment letters to the youths in the Central government departments and also lauded the government's achievements.
RCF General Manager Ashesh Agrawal was among those present on the occasion.