Chandigarh: Punjab Local Government Minister Navjot Singh Sidhu has derided Akali leader Sukhbir Singh Badal for masquerading as the saviour of the people of Punjab after destroying their interests during his party’s 10-year misrule of the state.
It was hilarious that the man who was responsible for leaving the state and its people devastated was now pretending to be its messiah, said Sidhu, reacting to Sukhbir’s theatrics at the Heritage Street in Amritsar yesterday.
The Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) president had, with his absurd posturing, once again exposed himself as a frivolous politician who was perpetually trying to play to the public gallery in a desperate bid to secure their attention ahead of the 2019 Lok Sabha elections, said Sidhu, in a statement issued here on Tuesday.
The people of Punjab, however, had not forgotten the misdeeds of the Badals, whose infinite greed had subjected them to immense suffering during their decade-long rule, said Sidhu, describing the period from 2007 to 2017 as one of economic terrorism.
The people of Punjab were just beginning to recover from the militant terrorism unleashed from across the border from 1980 to 1990 when the Badal-led economic terrorism hit them with full force, destroying the last vestiges of the state’s progress, he added.
During their regime, the Badals and their coterie had led the Akalis in grabbing all the businesses of the state, from transport to cable to mining, hospitality and more, plunging Punjab into a financial mess from which the Captain Amarinder Singh led government was battling hard to pull out the state, Sidhu further said.
Describing Sukhbir as the most hated politician ever, Sidhu said the people of Punjab were not ready to forgive him or the SAD, which they had unambiguously dumped during the Assembly polls. This was evident from the performance of SAD in various elections in the past one year, including MC polls as well as the Gurdaspur by-election in the state, he added.
Referring to Sukhbir and his family’s histrionics over the visit of the Canadian Prime Minister, Sidhu pointed out that SAD’s own ally, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), had delivered a resounding slap to the dignitary by sidelining him during the visit. Sukhbir, however, took a stand contrarian to that of the BJP, proving to the latter that he could not be trusted at all, the Cabinet Minister pointed out, asking how the people of Punjab could trust the SAD president when their own ally no longer had faith in him.