Congress MP and party candidate from Jalalabad Ravneet Singh Bittu on Tuesday alleged that Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal had a soft corner for Khalistani terrorists and termed the ruling Shiromani Akali Dal as the “mother of terrorism”. Addressing a poll rally here, Bittu hurled a series of allegations against Badal on his purported links to the Khalistani movement, and said the Punjab Chief Minister was trying to fool people into believing that terrorism in the state was patronised by the Congress “when the reverse was true”.
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“Rather than blaming the Congress, Badal should recall his party’s working committee resolution adopted in August 1980 in which it hailed politics of killing with reference to the assassination of Nirankari chief Gurbachan Singh. It was stated in the resolution that this killing was a matter of pride,” Bittu alleged.
It was this resolution that provided much-needed support base to terrorism, he claimed.
He described Badal as the “most dangerous leader who could use everybody, including terrorists, for his vested political interests”, adding that his party, the SAD is the “mother of terrorism”.
Bittu said Congress’ record in confronting terrorism was “unparallelled” with Prime Minister Indira Gandhi and his own grandfather Chief Minister Beant Singh being “martyred” in this fight.
“Badal participated in June 1986 conference organised by the radicals in the Golden Temple complex on Operation Bluestar anniversary,” he alleged. It was at this function that the terrorist Gurbachan Singh Manochahal was appointed Akal Takht Jathedar by the radicals, he said.
Bittu also asserted that he could bring forth several statements made by Badal “supporting terrorists and terrorism” during the Khalistani movement.
The Congress MP also claimed Badal had not backtracked so far from the Khalistan memorandum submitted to the United Nations which was signed by him along with leaders like Simranjit Singh Mann. This, he said, was not the only secessionist document signed by Badal.
He also alleged that Badal, as the chief minister, had presented a ‘siropa’ (robe of honour) to Jarnail Singh Bhindranwale at the time of his taking over as the Damdami Taksal chief.
Bittu is locked in a triangular fight for Jalalabad seat against SAD president Sukhbir Singh Badal and Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) heavyweight Bhagwant Mann.