The Shiromani Akali Dal on Thursday lashed out at the BJP for taking in its lone Haryana MLA, saying it was against the principle of "coalition dharma" and announcing that it will contest the state elections next month on its own. In a strong statement issued after a meeting in Amritsar chaired by party chief Sukhbir Singh Badal, the SAD said its old ally had "betrayed" it, news agency PTI reported.
Kalanwali MLA Balkaur Singh joined the BJP in New Delhi on Thursday, where he praised Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar for providing an "honest" government to the state.
"To protest this unethical step of making our MLA join their party at a time when we were in talks with them over seat sharing, we have called off the alliance with them in Haryana," SAD spokesperson Dr Daljit Singh Cheema told PTI.
Noting that the SAD had always stood through thick and thin with the BJP in national interest, the meeting in Amritsar said it was the BJP which had committed to contest the Haryana elections jointly with the SAD.
Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar had even held a press conference on the eve of the Lok Sabha elections and announced that the BJP and the SAD would contest the assembly elections jointly while soliciting support for BJP candidates, the panel said.
Claiming that the SAD had extended his support to the BJP wholeheartedly across the country, the panel said when the time came for the BJP to reciprocate, it backed out and even went to the extent of making an Akali MLA join it.
The committee said the SAD had always stood for peace and communal harmony besides safeguarding the rights of minority communities.
"We will continue to do so and will be the voice of all communities in the Haryana assembly," it said while asking the party workers to gear up for the assembly elections.
The panel said the party would soon come out with a list of candidates and assign duties to leaders and workers to run an "energetic and result-oriented campaign" in Haryana.
(With inputs from PTI)