BJP upset with ‘politics of memorials’
Chandigarh, June 8
Highly placed sources in the BJP have indicated that the issue of supporting clemency for Balwant Singh Rajoana, the assassin of former Chief Minister Beant Singh, and SAD supporting the SGPC decision to bestow Rajoana with the title of “Living Martyr” has not gone down well with the BJP leadership.
BJP leaders say that the move has encouraged some people after nearly 20 years to come openly with “Khalistan” slogans. Several senior BJP leaders in Punjab fell to the bullets of militants who were seeking a separate homeland of “Khalistan”. The party is, therefore, upset over the coming up of the “Bluestar” memorial in the Golden Temple complex. The issue is likely to cause a deep chasm between the alliance partners unless resolved to the satisfaction of the BJP soon.
Though, these issues have caused a strain in the relationship between the two parties who have divergent views on the subject, the manner in which SAD has tried to establish itself in the ongoing civic polls has also upset the BJP further. The SAD has fielded Hindu candidates and ignored the claim of the BJP as being the dominant partner in urban areas. The SAD has justified the move by saying that nearly 40 per cent of the urban Punjab, which was the SAD vote bank, has moved to urban areas and, therefore, the SAD feels more involved in urban areas too.
Even as the SAD justification may sound reasonable, the BJP has taken the move as a direct clash of interest and calls it a move against the “coalition dharma”. A senior BJP leader said the “The relationship between the alliance partners is not as smooth as one would expect two coalition partners to be, but we are waiting for the civic polls to be over before the matter is discussed with SAD”.
The BJP leadership is unhappy not only because SAD actions have embarrassed the BJP in the eyes of its own support base, but also because the SAD has not accepted many suggestions made by the BJP. The BJP, for example, wanted that the names of the candidates to be elected Mayors in the four corporation towns on Amritsar, Jalandhar, Ludhiana and Patiala should be announced. But even though there is a talk about the likely candidates, no official announcement has come from the SAD-BJP alliance, much to the dismay of the BJP.
After the results of the civic elections are declared on Sunday, the BJP is expected to take up major irritants with the SAD, initially informally and then in a more aggressive manner if it does not get the desired response. Former BJP in-charge of Punjab, Balbir Punj has made his stand public saying that the party was opposed to the “politics of memorials”.
Ready to confront ally
BJP feels SAD has been promoting its own cause n
To confront SAD on is hardening stand on panthic issues n
Irked over the manner in which SAD has tried to establish itself in the ongoing civic polls n
SAD has fielded Hindu candidates and ignored the claim of the BJP as being the dominant partner in urban areas.
n To confront SAD on is hardening stand on panthic issues
n Irked over the manner in which SAD has tried to establish itself in the ongoing civic polls
n SAD has fielded Hindu candidates and ignored the claim of the BJP as being the dominant partner in urban areas.