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Sukhbir Badal's move to revamp SAD lost its purpose, old guard rule the roost

November 19, 2017 12:53 PM

Punjab News Express/Satinder Bains
CHANDIGARH: The much hyped move by Shiromani Akali Dal(SAD) president Sukhbir Singh Badal to revamp the party in wake of humiliating defeat in the last assembly elections has failed to bring any change in the party's top leadership. The hopes of young leaders in the party are dashed since no credible face from among the youth was given place in the party's top herarichy. There is hardly any repersentation to women.

At times Sukhbir Badal appeared changing the party's etho to Panthic and then returning to secular agenda. He recently boycotted the Guru Gobing Singh birthday celebrations held by RSS to reinforce his panghic credentials and also sided with radicals many times, recently raising doubts over the arrest of Jagtar Jaggi Johal a UK resident in case or targeted killings of Hindu leaders. He moves as opportunity suits him. Just before assembly elections in 2017 he attempted to show up SAD as a panthic outfit to get support of Sant Samaj and now while reorganising party he gave secular look with inducting Hindu and Muslim faces.He aims to include some christian leaders in the list of Vice Presidents yet to be released.

Sukhbir Badal has retained all his old guard, majority of them over 70 years of age and some even over 80. Badal has also given significance repersentation to Hindu leaders in top brass and also at district level. Four Hindu leaders would be district presidents of SAD. He seems targeting at the BJP vote bank with the aim to expand his vote bank and reduce dependability on BJP.

The party has also retained Delhi SAD president Manjit Singh G.K. and Bibi Jagor Kaur facing charges of murder of her daughter as president of the Istri Akali Dal. The appointment of 75 year old JJ Singh an ex-army general as President of ex-servicement wing of the party is only surprise which is bound to dent the party's base among ex-servicemen cadre of the party.

Those promoted from post of General Secretary to Senior Vice President are Maheshinder Singh Grewal, Nirmal Singh Kahlon, Janmeja Singh Johal, Prem Singh Chandumajra and Naresh Gujaral. The others in the list of Senior Vice Presidents are Ranjit Singh Brahmpura, Balwinder Singh Bhundar, Tota Singh, Dr Upinderjit Kaur, Maheshinder Singh Grewal, Charanjit Singh Atwal, Sewa Singh Sekhwan, Adesh Pratap Singh Kairon, Dr Daljit Singh Cheema, Naresh Gujral and Sharanjit Singh Dhillon. Except Cheema, Kairon and Dhillon all leaders are near or above 70 years of age and four have crossed 80.

Dr Ratan Singh Ajnala, Bikram Singh Majithia, Parminder Singh Dhindsa, Sohan Singh Thandal, Jeet Mahinder Singh Sidhu, Manjinder Singh Sirsa, Iqbal Singh Jhunda, Pawan Kumar Tinu, Gurpartap Singh Wadala, Manpreet Singh Ayali, Harmeet Singh Sandhu, Gaganjit Singh Barnala and Harpreet Singh Kotbhai are general secretaries of SAD. Sirsa among them is BJP MLA from Delhi.

Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa now above 80 years of age would remain Secretary General of party.N.K,.Sharma remains Treasurer of the party.

Sukhbir Badal has inducted four Hindus as district presidents and they are Satish Grover Faridkot urban, Pres Kumar Arora Mansa Urban, Bal Krishan Bali Moga urban and Ashok Juneja Fazilka urban.

The only surprise in the list is removal of longitme aide veteran leader Dyal Singh Kollianwali as district Muktsar president and replacing him with Kanwaljit Singh Rozy Barkandi. There are rumours that Badal family want to install Kollianwali as President of SGPC being most loyal person to the Badal clan. He may replace Kirpal Singh Badungar who has supported demand for Khalistan against the wishes of BJP and RSS, alliance partners of SAD.

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