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Captain Should Act Against Badals Or Quit As Punjab CM: Congress MP Partap Singh Bajwa

By: Aman Sharma


Last Updated: June 05, 2021, 14:51 IST

New Delhi

File photo of Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh.

File photo of Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh.

He said action against the Badals in 2015 sacrilege and firing cases was the “number one issue”, and Congress could face difficulties in polls if steps were not taken.

Partap Singh Bajwa, a Congress Rajya Sabha MP from Punjab, says a majority of party leaders in the state want Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh to charge-sheet Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) leaders Parkash Singh Badal and Sukhbir Singh Badal within one month in the much-debated 2015 sacrilege and firing cases, or make way for someone who could do it.

In an interview to News18, Bajwa, who is also a former Punjab Congress chief, said action against the Badals in this connection was the “number one issue” ahead of the Punjab elections. He added the Congress could face a difficult task in the upcoming polls if action was not initiated, as public sentiments were running high.

“We want time-bound action in a month. The challan naming then chief minister Parkash Singh Badal, then state home minister Sukhbir Singh Badal and then DGP (director general of police) Sumedh Singh Saini should be presented to the sessions court in Faridkot and the case against them should start. The AG office needs to only legally vet the challan as they already have all the investigation,” Bajwa told News18 over the phone.

Sacrilege cases involving the holy book of the Sikhs were reported in Punjab in 2015, leading to protests. In one such protest, two persons were killed in police firing, leading to a political uproar. In April, the Punjab and Haryana High Court said the investigation into the cases should be completed within six months. The Punjab government has constituted a new Special Investigation Team (SIT) for this.


Bajwa, who also appeared before a Congress committee that spoke to various state leaders including the CM in Delhi, said if the challan was not presented in time-bound manner, someone else should be given a chance as the CM.

“Then he (Amarinder Singh) should relieve himself and let someone else do the task. We still say that if (he) wants to do it, make him do it because he took an oath and it was his promise. But if he is not willing to do it, we say to him with folded hands that please make way — and he should be given a graceful exit. Let someone who is ready and competent then be brought to do it, as right now we have time to bring them (Badals) to the court. Only six months to go before the Model Code of Conduct is enforced in the state come December,” Bajwa said.

Bajwa said the limited time left to act in the matter was why Congress leaders in Punjab were getting restless. “Not just me but a majority of MLAs and the CM’s colleagues…have gone against him…only because of this. The perception that is going around is that he and Badals have a tacit understanding. This perception has to be broken. This perception can only be broken if a challan is put up against them. Or this perception will become stronger…then why would people vote for us? People will boycott us in the villages if this (action against Badals) does not happen, and the anger will further increase. We are hoping that the high command will get this implemented,” Bajwa said. He said the sentiment among people was that the CM must fulfill the promise “he made to the Guru”, and that this should have been his first priority on coming to power as people voted for him on this issue.

Bajwa pointed to Singh’s public pronouncement before the 2017 elections that if he came to power, he would act against the Badals. Bajwa alleged that it was a matter of record that the then DGP and Sukhbir Singh Badal spoke 105 times over the phone the night before the firing. “People feel they voted on this issue but nothing happened and they would feel duped. People are very disturbed by this, as Singh took oath of our holy book to take action,” Bajwa said.

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first published:June 05, 2021, 14:34 IST
last updated:June 05, 2021, 14:51 IST