The Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) president Sukhbir Singh Badal on Sunday accused the ruling Congress government for trying to suppress the voice of  Akali workers. He accused the government of resorting to ‘repression tactics’ to  distract attention from failed-unfiled-poll promises. Sukhbir was addressing media after a meeting of SAD core committee, here.

“I dare this government to arrest me anytime, anywhere for trying to suppress voice of Akali workers and acting like cowards. Government is afraid from these brave workers, each one of who carries the legacy of Taksali Akali courage and spirit of selfless sacrifice. No Akali will bow before these repressors. If the government has courage, let them act like grownups and fight it out with me and my colleagues rather than common workers”, said, Badal.

Regarding the inconvenience to commuters during the Akali dharnas, Badal   said, “It really hurts me and I sincerely apologise to each and every one of the  students, ladies, children or the sick and elderly people who had to face this inconvenience”, Badal said, adding that the dharnas were not about Akalis but about the rights of the common men to elect civic bodies of their own choice for progress and development in their areas. “How can the people elect representatives of their choice, if they are denied this opportunity by allowing only Congressmen to contest”, he said.

Badal alleged there is no rule of law in the state, he said, “The officers better discharge their duties as fair and impartial servants of the people. The way things are heading, the state government may not last even the remaining four years.  We are keeping a close and vigilant watch on each one of these officers,” he said.

Badal said that a cell has been created in the party head office, which would act as ‘Vigilance Authority’ and keep records of government officials including the police who are violating the rule of law and harassing Akali workers. “When we form the government, we will hand over these cases to a sitting judge of Punjab and Haryana High Court for expeditious disposal and punishment to the guilty.”

Nearly, 200 SAD workers and leaders, including party president Sukhbir Singh Badal and former minister Bikram Singh Majithia, were booked for blocking traffic during a protest in Punjab’s Ferozepur district. Badal and Majithia had spent Thursday’s night at Manawala on the Harike-Patan road, demanding the Congress government in Punjab to withdraw the ‘false’ cases registered against SAD leaders and workers.