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Badal holds fort in Patiala 

Patiala: “Kaka, photo jinni marji khicha lao par rally te zaroor auna hai (Get as many photos clicked, but do turn up at the rally),” says former CM Parkash Singh Badal, who is wooing Akali workers and posing for selfies with youths to mobilise them for the October 7 rally here. 

With the SAD busy tackling dissidence, Badal is using his political acumen to ensure a good turnout at the rally, working for 14 hours. He is visiting all constituencies of Patiala, giving ample time to every leader and, at the same time, denying “fissures in the party”.

Badal has been camping in Patiala for the past two days. On Monday evening, he sat at the house of party leader Satbir Khatra, who ensured that all his workers got themselves clicked with the SAD stalwart.

When Badal saw a youth looking tired after standing for an hour, he said: “Main taan aje vi tuhade naalo takda haan. Dekh lo ji savere 8 vaje ton nikal janda haan party nu mazboot karan lai, te raat tak karda rehnda haan. (I am fitter than you are. I start my day at 8 am and continue till late night).”

Insiders say Badal, who turns 91 in December, has been on his toes ever since Taksali leaders Ranjit Singh Brahmpura, Rattan Singh Ajnala and Sewa Singh Sekhwan aired their grievances. They say they have never seen him so keen for a rally, doing everything to “please all” in the party cadre.

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