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Anti-Sad Groups Unite; To Fight Sgpc Poll On Common Symbol

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Anti-SAD groups unite; to fight SGPC poll on common symbol

Perneet Singh

Tribune News Service

Amritsar, July 31

While the SAD has begun the exercise to select candidates for the SGPC elections, the moderates and hardliners have begun parleys to form a united front against the ruling party.

Talking to The Tribune today, SAD secretary DS Cheema hinted that not all sitting members in the SGPC House may be fielded this time. He said: “We will field candidates selected on the basis of their image in the constituency, their hold in the religious arena and their spirit to perform sewa.”

He said 12 SGPC members of SAD had died in the past seven years. Some were facing health problems relating to old age. He said the final call on the allotment of ticket will be taken after meetings with district SAD chiefs, party MPs and MLAs.

He said the SAD would field fresh faces as it had done in the last elections.

On the SAD manifesto for the SGPC elections, Cheema said this would be ready in the next couple of days.

On the other hand, the SAD (Delhi), SAD (1920) and SAD (Longowal), who have joined hands, are making efforts to carry along radical outfits like the Dal Khalsa and the Khalsa Action Committee.

Senior Dal Khalsa leader Kanwar Pal Singh said the parleys to forge an alliance had already begun. He said there were two options- first, all opposition groups, moderates and hardliners, put up a united front and contest the poll on a common election symbol and second, the moderates and the hardliners form their own fronts and enter into a seat sharing arrangement.

He said the picture would become clear over the next few days and the first list of candidates probably released by August 4.

The DSGMC and the SAD (Delhi) chief, Paramjit Singh Sarna, said: “It would not be a cakewalk for the SAD candidates... it could be anybody’s game this time.”

He said “he would urge the Home Ministry to deploy the CRPF to ensure free and fair elections”. He objected to the Sangat Darshan functions in Punjab in view of the SGPC elections.

The SAD (1920) chief, Ravi Inder Singh, said they had formed a six-member committee to hold negotiations with other opposition groups.

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