CHANDIGARH: A lack of any perceptible action in sacrilege cases of the Guru Granth Sahib, and a 2015 pardon granted by the Akal Takht to Dera Sacha Sauda chief Gurmeet Ram Rahim in a blasphemy case seem to have hit the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) where it hurts.
On Thursday, over 30 Akali workers resigned from the party in SAD president Sukhbir Singh Badal’s constituency of Jalalabad.
Badal had earlier expelled MP Ranjit Singh Brahmpura, his son Ravinder, former MP Rattan Singh Ajnala and his son Amarpal to quell rebellion. Justifying the expulsions, SAD leaders Savinder Singh Sehsara and Gulbagh Singh Billa said discipline was sacrosanct.
But, the dissent started in September, when Rajya Sabha MP Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa resigned from all posts. Matters worsened when Badal lashed out at the Bargari Insaaf ‘Morcha’ — an outfit demanding action and justice in sacrilege cases and the deaths of two youngsters in police firing during a protest in Behbal Kalan — as agents of the Congress and Pakistan’s ISI
The issue of the Behbal Kala firings came to dominate the Sikh religious-political discourse following the submission of Justice Ranjit Singh Commission report. With the general elections due next year, the SAD’s political fortunes may take a hit if things do not go their way soon.