Alva asks Punjabis to vote Cong in next Lok Sabha polls

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Moga, Jun 5 (UNI) All India Congress Committee (AICC) general secretary Margaret Alva today called upon the people of Punjab to join hands with the Congress to defeat the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD)-BJP in the next Lok Sabha polls.

She was addressing a largely attended Punjab Congress rally against atrocities and high handedness of the SAD-BJP government against party workers and the recent incidents of violence in the Gram Panchayat elections and implication of party activists in false cases.

She alleged that the police and bureaucracy was openly siding with the SAD-BJP activists in their tirade against Congress workers and leaders. She warned such officers of dire consequences if they did not mend their attitude.

She sought to remind Mr Parkash Singh Badal that he was the chief minister of the state and not of the SAD and BJP parties and it was his moral duty to protect the life and property of every individual.

She also asked the Congress party workers to forge the unity and face the challenge of the SAD-BJP alliance and this challenge could not be faced from inside AC rooms. The AICC general secretary made this appeal even as former chief minister Capt Amarinder Singh chose not to attend the rally.

In her address Punjab Congress chief Rajinder Kaur Bhattal alleged that the state government had completely failed on all fronts and in the last one year 13 Congress workers had been killed while around 7000 had been injured in the violence perpetrated by the leaders of the ruling alliance and their henchmen. Denying that she had a soft corner towards the Akalis, she said that had this been the case the Congress would not have organised this protest rally.

She also asked the Congress workers to work unitedly to defeat to SAD-BJP alliance partners in the forthcoming Municipal Committee polls.

She alleged that the state government had failed to hold free and fair elections to the Block Samitis and Zila Parishads. She reiterated her demand for the resignation of Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal as he had failed to protect democracy at the grass roots.

The rally was also addresssed among others by Brahm Mohindra, former minister Avtar Henry, Joginderpal Jain and Darshan Singh.

Later at a media conference Mrs Bhattal also reiterated her demand for the imposition of president's rule in Punjab alleging that the state government and government machinery had collapsed in the recent Zila Parishad and Block Samiti elections. She claimed that violence of this nature would bring back the days of terrorism in Punjab.

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