The BJP has virtually put the Akalis on notice, with the its core committee serving an ultimatum to its own government to arrest those involved in the attack on Rajesh Joshi, the brother of Local Bodies Minister Anil Joshi.
The core committee of the state unit, which met in Chandigarh today to discuss the attack by alleged Akalis on its workers in Tarn Taran on Tuesday, gave the state government 24 hours to arrest the accused. It also demanded the dismissal of the SHO of Tarn Taran city police station and immediate transfer of the Senior Superintendent of Police of the district.
The meeting was attended by senior party leaders including state president Kamal Sharma, Union Minister of State for Social Justice and Empowerment Vijay Sampla, cabinet minister Anil Joshi and former state unit chief Brij Lal Rinwa.
Taking a harsh stand against the Punjab government, in which BJP is a partner, the core committee deliberated on the attack in detail, with Anil Joshi asking the committee to boycott the local body elections in Tarn Taran. The minister said it was a providential escape for his brother as direct shots were fired at him by Akali workers.
The meeting also deliberated upon contesting all 23 municipal wards of Tarn Taran municipal council without entering into any sort of sharing of seats with SAD. However, Sharma is said to have suggested that this decision may be left to district president Navreet Singh Lovely. Tomorrow is the last date for filing nominations for municipal council polls.
It was also decided that Sampla would visit Tarn Taran on Friday to take stock of the situation after the attack. Sampla would be accompanied by Sharma, Rinwa and BJP national secretary Tarun Chugh.
SAD leader DS Cheema said his party would wait and watch rather than respond immediately to the ultimatum.