This denial from the former Congress leader comes amid reports that the Punjab Congress leadership is in talks with some of its former leaders for their homecoming ahead of the 2024 Lok Sabha polls.
Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader and former Punjab chief minister Captain Amarinder Singh on Saturday sought strict action against a Rajasthan leader, Sandeep Damya, for his hate remarks about mosques and gurdwaras in the country.
In a statement issued on Saturday, Capt Amarinder said people like Damya, who speak mindlessly and make vicious statements, should have no place in a party like the BJP. He said, the apology by the said leader served no purpose as it had already caused immense damage to well-meaning people.
He said not only should he be expelled from the party, there must be legal action also. He said nobody should be allowed to get away with a mere apology after provocative hate speeches.
In a video that has gone viral on social media, Dayma said during an election rally in the Tijara legislative assembly constituency in Rajasthan that if the BJP comes to power, mosques and gurudwaras would be “uprooted”.
The BJP leader was speaking at a rally held in the presence of Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath and a host of other party leaders. The rally was in favour of BJP’s Tijara candidate Baba Balaknath.
Following this, the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) slammed Dayma for making remarks that first targeted Muslim and Sikh religious places and later Muslim ones alone.
The statement led to widespread anger among the Sikhs, forcing Sandeep Dayma to issue an apology. But the “apology” too was laced with religious hatred, but only against the Muslim community. Dayma said, “It was a slip of the tongue and what I wanted to say was that ‘mosques and madrasas’ would be uprooted. I wanted to say ‘masjid-madrasa’, but somehow said gurudwara. I apologise with folded hands.”
Sharing the BJP leader’s apology video, Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) president Sukhbir Singh Badal had said his party rejects the apology by the BJP leader. “He seems to suffer from an arrogant and perverted mindset and he does not understand that there is no difference among shrines of different religions, be it a temple, a gurdwara, a masjid or any other place of worship”, Badal wrote on X.