Chandigarh: Owing to individual and political interests, Sikh’s own Panthic party Shiromani Akali Dal (B) today stands more disunited than ever and under the present circumstances, the unity among the divided factions appears to be elusive.
Peeved over the situation not only a few factions of Akali have given a call to unite but Giani Harpreet Singh, the officiating Jathedar of Sikh’s supreme temporal seat Akal Takht, has also called upon all Akali factions to forget their differences and once again gather on a platform as a single unit.
Having shrunk to just 3 seats in the recently concluded assembly elections from 15 seats held by SAD(B) in the 2017 assembly elections, the SAD(B) is believed to be passing through its roughest patch since its inception on December 14, 1920.
Dubbed as the oldest regional party of the country, Sukhbir Singh Badal led SAD (B) earned infamy for promoting nepotism, and instead came to be known as the ‘flag bearer ‘ of nepotism in state polity that brought the Panthic party under the attack of opposition political parties especially its principal opposition party Congress.
In the recent past, Paramjit Singh Sarna led SAD(D), senior advocate and former Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) MLA HS Phoolka gave a call for unity among Akali factions, Delhi based Manjit Singh GK led Jag Aasra Guru Ott (JAGO) have also suggested the revival plans. Both Sarna and GK are the former presidents of the Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee and have their political interests in Delhi and not in Punjab.
GK has suggested forming a ‘Federation’ of Sikh religious and political bodies and also claimed to have contacted the Sikh representatives across the nation for the purpose.
In a veiled comment, Giani Harpreet Singh had stated that SAD(B) drubbing in the last assembly elections ‘was not good for Sikhs and the nation” and had issued an appeal to ‘save SAD’ which is yet to be heard by the respective Akali factions.
Political observer Manohar Lal Sharma, who has also been the advisor to former Chief Minister of Punjab Harcharan Singh Brar observed “there will not be unity among Akali’s since SAD(B) wouldn’t agree on continuing without the Badal family while other factions want Badal’s to be sidelined”. Besides, he said presently Akali factions need to strengthen their mass base which had been eroded in the wave of AAP.