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Polls lost, Akali Dal to go into overdrive to win back voters 

Chandigarh/Muktsar, Sept 23

Battered in the zila parishad and panchayat samiti elections, as a consequence of the Justice Ranjit Singh Commission inquiry report on sacrilege cases, the Akali Dal has decided to go on the offensive against the Congress government. 

With Chief Minister Capt Amarinder Singh announcing a rally on Badal’s home turf Lambi on October 7, the Akalis too have decided to “expose the failures of the Congress” in CM’s hometown Patiala, the same day.

A meeting of the SAD core committee was held at Badal village on Sunday. Barring Bikram Singh Majithia, other 21 members of the committee were present in the meeting, chaired by party patriarch Parkash Singh Badal.

With the party having lost control over all zila parishads and 90 per cent of panchayat samitis and barely managing control over Lambi and Jalalabad, the leadership huddled together to decide the next course of action.

Sources told The Tribune that while SAD president Sukhbir Badal took a backseat, most decisions in the meeting were taken by Badal.

This was apparently aimed at mollifying the old guard, who had raised questions at decisions taken by Sukhbir during the last core committee meeting. With Badal taking the lead, no senior leader questioned his authority, and rather spoke of “murder of democracy by the Congress”.

The leaders are learnt to have discussed the number of places where nomination papers were rejected and the alleged booth capturing and manipulation in the counting of votes in their respective constituencies.

With the parliamentary elections just months away, it was decided that the leaders would organise rallies to highlight the “failures of the Congress” to woo voters. The party would also be adopting its old “Panthic strategy”. A kirtan darbar and dharmik samagam would be held at Sultanpur Lodhi as part of the 550th Parkash Utsav of Guru Nanak Dev on November 17, besides pursuing the Kartarpur Sahib corridor with the Centre.

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