The latest chapter in the growing rift between allies SAD and BJP is being written in Ludhiana where the BJP’s district unit has questioned a proposal by the city Municipal Corporation (MC) to allot a room at its headquarters to Ludhiana SAD president Madan Lal Bagga.
In a letter to the Ludhiana MC commissioner G K Singh, district BJP president Parveen Bansal has termed the proposal as being ‘undemocratic’ and ‘biased’. “This is not only against ethics but a biased move as a leader of one particular party cannot be allotted a room in MC office,” his letter reads.
“What will be the position or stand of Mayor when his party president will sit above his head in MC office? Will he be able to take fair decisions? First, this room should not be allotted and second if it is allotted, then we demand that all political party heads including BJP, should get a room,” Bansal told The Sunday Express. The proposal had caused friction earlier as well. When the agenda, to grant Bagga a room, was moved during a General House meeting last December, it drew opposition from councillors of all parties, including the Akali Dal.
The agenda was then declared pending but the BJP now claims that Mayor Harcharan Singh Gohalwaria, a close aide of CM Parkash Singh Badal, has begun proceedings to allot the room to Bagga.
“Our sources have confirmed that the Mayor and commissioner have re-started the proceedings to allot the room to SAD district president. We are not going to let that happen as the leader has no connection to the MC affairs and thus, has no right to sit in the MC office. There is already a shortage of space for MC employees,” said Inder Aggarwal, the BJP spokesperson.
Room allotted to excise dept: Bagga
The district SAD president Madan Lal Bagga on Saturday said the room at the Ludhiana MC headquarters had been sought for him by the Punjab excise and taxation department. Bagga is also the vice-chairman of the Punjab Traders’ Board which falls under the excise and taxation department. “My department was giving me an office in Mohali but I wanted one in Ludhiana. Excise department applied for a room in MC office which I can use as my office. BJP has educated people and it is shocking that they can question me when excise department applied for it. It is quite obvious that since I do not hold any position in MC, I cannot get a room,” he said. G K Dhaliwal, Ludhiana MC commissioner, however, said, “No room is being allotted and as of now, there is no fresh proposal.”