A DAY after snapping ties with the BJP, Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) president Sukhbir Singh Badal on Sunday said the Narendra Modi-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) had lost credibility and was an alliance “just in name”.
Talking to The Indian Express, Badal said, “For the last 7, 8, 10 years or so, NDA is just in name. There is nothing in the NDA. No discussion, no planning, no meetings. I don’t remember a day in last 10 years when the Prime Minister called NDA meeting for lunch to discuss what they have in mind. Alliances should not be on paper… Before this, during Vajpayee’s time, there used to be a proper relationship. My father is a founder member of the NDA… It’s sad that we created the NDA but the NDA is not there today.”
Saying the Akalis have always taken the BJP along in the state, Badal said, “Alliances should be run the way my father Parkash Singh Badal did. For every decision, he would call the BJP. Whenever we went to the Governor to submit any memorandum, the BJP would be with us. We are the majority partner (in the state) and they are minority partner. Despite that, we took them into confidence for everything.”
On the state BJP’s assertions that had Badal Senior been in command, he would have shown “farsightedness to save the alliance”, Sukhbir said, “This (exiting the NDA) was the unanimous decision of the party. When Harsmirat Badal resigned from the (Modi) Cabinet, I had said that the party will meet and take a decision. The party met yesterday and we took the decision.”
On reports that the state government is considering a move to declare the entire state as principal market yard, Sukhbir said, “It would be good if they declare the entire state as principal market yard as we proposed. We are for farmers. Our interest is not to play games. If they (the Congress government in the state) do not do what we feel is right, we will do it when we come to power.”
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