The Shiromani Akali Dal, which was ousted from power in Punjab in the just-concluded assembly elections after ruling the state for a decade, on Monday “accepted the verdict of the people” of Punjab “in all humility and honesty”.
At a meeting of the Akali Dal core committee, which was attended by party President Sukhbir Singh Badal, former Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal and other top leaders here, a resolution of the party said: “The people had appreciated the agenda of development and good governance and that resulted in the party getting the second highest percentage of votes all across the state.”
The party, however, took stock of its loss in the recent assembly elections.
Party General Secretary Harcharan Singh Bains said the party felt that “conspiracies were hatched to render Punjabis and Sikhs leaderless by targeting the SAD. But we will continue to seek inspiration form the great Gurus and fight all such conspiracies… all over the world.”
“The party has undertaken an honest introspection about the shortcomings and other reasons that may have led to the decline in popular support,” he said here.
“We will support every decision of the government which is good for Punjab and its people. But we will steadfastly and vehemently fight against any decisions that go against the interest of the state and the people,” Bains said.
The meeting called upon the new Congress government in the state headed by Chief Minister Amarinder Singh not to use committees as a “smoke-screen to hide behind for inaction on its promises”.
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“It should have announced waiver of debt for farmers as all the data was already available with the government. It should have announced a cabinet approval for a recruitment drive to fulfil its promise of 30 lakh jobs.
“The new government could have fulfilled all its promises at the first cabinet meeting… (as) these were made only after seeing that the government treasury is in a healthy shape to meet these promises,” the spokesman said.
The core committee said the 120-point agenda of the Punjab Council of Ministers is nothing but “a rehash of decisions already in force and implemented by the previous government”.
Defending party President Sukhbir Badal, the resolution said: “The party is proud of its President’s visionary and courageous leadership and his indefatigable zeal and energy for taking Punjab forward. The steps initiated under his leadership… will be appreciated more and more in times to come.”
Bains said the meeting also took strong notice of acts of vendetta and repression against Akali workers by goons of the ruling Congress party.
“The meeting urged the government to cry a halt to such unseemly confrontation and repression or be prepared to face the Akali resistance. The SAD will not take such excesses lying down… But we hope that the government would not encourage the acts of repression and violence and spoil the peaceful atmosphere,” he said.