Shiromani Akali Dal president Sukhbir Singh Badal on Friday today set up a five-member coordination panel to talk to “all Panthic and pro-Punjab political parties” and evolve a consensus for a united fight against “anti-Panth, anti-Punjab, and Delhi-centric forces” in the forthcoming by-poll next month for Sangrur Lok Sabha constituency.
Badal was earlier authorised by the party’s highest decision-making body, the Core Committee, to take a decision on all aspects of the by-poll.
Giving details of the meeting, Badal’s principal advisor Harcharan Bains said the coordination committee would talk to all other political parties and organisations committed to the cause of the Panth and Punjab to arrive at a consensus both on the candidature as well as a joint strategy for the poll.
“Shiromani Akali Dal treats this election as Punjab versus Delhi and an opportunity for the Panth and Punjab to thwart and defeat the assault of the anti-Punjab forces and enemies of Panth operating from outside with the blessings of forces opposed to Panth and Punjab,” he said.
Bains said these forces have not only befooled and betrayed the people of the state with their fake propaganda circus but are also engaged in devious conspiracies to wreck the Khalsa Panth and its heritage from within and weaken the Punjabi and Panthic identity.
The members of the coordination committee set by the SAD president are Balwinder Singh Bhunder, Prof Prem Singh Chandumajra, Jathedar Sikandar Singh Malooka, Jathedar Iqbal Singh Jhoonda, and Jathedar Virsa Singh Valtoha.
The bypoll for the Sangrur Lok Sabha seat will be held on June 23. The constituency includes three districts— Sangrur, Barnala, and Malerkotla.
The by-poll was necessitated after Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann vacated the seat following his election in the Punjab Assembly. Mann, who won from Sangrur in two consecutive Lok Sabha polls in 2014 and 2019, resigned from the Lok Sabha on 14 March.