Amritsar (Punjab) [India], January 26 (ANI): Five-time Punjab Chief Minister and senior Shiromani Akali Dal leader Parkash Singh Badal will fight the upcoming assembly elections from Lambi.
Making the announcement here, his son and SAD chief Sukhbir Singh Badal said they requested the party patron not to retire from active politics. The presence of Parkash Singh Badal, 94, in the fray is likely to strengthen the SAD poll effort in the tough multi-party contest in Punjab.
"The entire party pleaded with Sardar Parkash Singh Badal not to retire from politics and he has acceded to our request to contest the forthcoming elections from Lambi. Badal Sahab has always been in the forefront to offer his services for the welfare of Punjab and Punjabis and he is doing so again," Sukhbir Singh Badal said at a press conference.
Born on December 8, 1927, at Abul Khurana, near Malout Parkash Singh Badal became Chief Minister for the first time in 1970 and was then the youngest chief minister of an Indian state. He was the president of the party from 1995 to 2008.
Sukbir Singh Badal also announced that former minister Bikram Singh Majithia would take on state Congress chief Navjot Singh Sidhu in Amritsar East in the February 20 assembly polls.
He said that Satinder Singh Chajjwalwadi, son of three-time legislator Ranjit Singh Chajjalwadi, would be the party nominee from Baba Bakala seat. He also inducted the Chajjalwadi family into the SAD along with a large number of Congress Sarpanch and block Samiti members on the occasion.
Hitting out at Sidhu, Sukhbir Singh Badal said his "arrogance will be his undoing".
"He has been harping on his support among the masses. Now his support will be tested with 'Majha da sher' taking him on in his home constituency. He (Sidhu) should get ready to fight the brave SAD workers. We will break his arrogance by ensuring he loses his security deposit," he said.
"We have called Sidhu's bluster. We know he has not done anything in his constituency for the last five years. He did not do anything in his constituency even as local bodies' minister. Amritsar East has drinking water and even sewerage issues which have not been addressed by Sidhu. Now the people of his constituency will hold him to account," Sukhbir Singh Badal added.
The SAD president said the Congress government had targeted Majithia and even registered a "false case" against him as he had always raised the issues of the people.
Majithia, who is brother-in-law of Sukhbir Singh Badal, is also contesting from Majithia seat.
"Majithia is known to fight for the people. This was not to the liking of the Congress government. They have registered a false case against a Gursikh who is known to do 'nitnem' (Sikh hymns) for two-and-a-half hours every day," he said.
He said SAD workers also realized that the best way to seek justice for Majithia was in the people's court and it is they who prevailed upon the party to make him the party candidate from Amritsar East.
Badal announced that the party's chief sewadar from Amritsar East- - Gurpreet Randhawa would be the election in-charge of Majithia.
Majithia was booked by Punjab Police under the Narcotic Drugs and Psychotropic Substances (NDPS) Act at SAS Nagar Police Station on the basis of a 2018 report submitted by the anti-drug Special Task Force (STF).
The Punjab and Haryana high court on Monday rejected the anticipatory bail plea of Majithia in the case. (ANI)