Congress leader Capt Amarinder Singh today said that he had strongly opposed Operation Bluestar unlike Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal, who, he claimed, had asked the then Union Government to go for military action at Golden temple.
"I had strongly opposed the Operation Bluestar... unlike Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal who changes his stand and stance depending on the situation that suits him," Capt Amarinder said.
In reaction to the allegations levelled by Akali Dal leaders Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa and Balwinder Singh Bhunder that he had advised the then Prime Minister Indira Gandhi on Bluestar, the Congress leader said he did not need Akalis' certificate about his opposition to the military operation.
Pointing out that he not only resigned from the Congress party to protest against the Operation Bluestar, but also gave up his membership of the parliament, Singh said, he was involved in negotiations about the happenings in Punjab from 1980 to January 1984 when he dissociated himself from the process.
Singh reiterated his question to Badal to explain to the people of Punjab as what transpired between him and the then Union Home Minister P V Narsimha Rao on March 28, 1984 and whether he did not recommend military action in Darbar Sahib as he was dead scared about rise of Jarnail Singh Bhindrawale.
Accusing Badal of practising the politics of double standards even then, the senior Congress leader claimed that on the one hand he recommended military action against Bhindrawale, on the other hand he (Badal) got himself associated with Khalistan Commando Force led by Gurjant Singh Rajasthani for protection.
Reiterating his demand that all the documents related to Operation Bluestar be declassified, Singh said, he wondered as how Badal will be able to defend himself once everything comes into the public domain.
He exuded hope that the documents would be declassified soon as thirty years have already passed and now the public should be told what actually transpired at that time.
Earlier, Singh had claimed that Badal held a secret meeting with then Union Home Minister P V Narsimha Rao, then Cabinet Secretary, the Principal Secretary to the Prime Minister and the Union Home Secretary in a guest house in New Delhi on March 28, 1984, wherein he sought military action at Golden temple.
Meanwhile, reacting over Capt Amarinder's statement, the Shiromani Akali Dal said it seems that "the former CM is running with the hare and hunting with the hounds."
SAD spokesman Daljit Singh Cheema said it is ample clear from the statement of Singh that he wants to assert himself as a "true" Sikh by opposing the Operation Bluestar only in the media whereas as a Congressman he goes out of way to save the face of the Gandhi family whose reality has been exposed again with the exposure of secret British documents relating to Operation Bluestar.
He said that it is amusing to see that the former Chief Minister is evasive on the question of what forced him to join SAD in 1984 after resigning from the Congress if he held Akalis guilty in the whole episode and why he forgot the 'sins' of the Congress including Operation Bluestar when he returned to its fold?
The SAD leader said it is ironical to note that as a Chief Minister of the Congress party he forgot all those sins of the Congress due to which he had resigned after Operation Bluestar.
"This exposes the height of the opportunism he is adopting to be in power someway or the other," he said.
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