Amarinder devoid of moral character: Badal
Chandigarh : In perhaps the sharpest personal attack on his political opponent, Shiromani Akali Dal patron Parkash Singh Badal said on Saturday that the state Chief Minister Amarinder Singh was "devoid of moral character and given to pursuits of unethical leisure and pleasure".
In a hard-hitting statement here on Saturday in response to recent statements by Amarinder Singh regarding Badal ordering firing by the police on people protesting against sacrilege incidents of Guru Granth Sahib in October 2015, Badal said that the chief minister "had lowered the dignity of the august office he happens to hold by using foul and cheap language on the floor of the Punjab Vidhan Sabha".
Referring to the use of expressions such as "Badmash, Buzdil, liar and unreliable", Badal said that "every sensitive and civilized Punjabi has been deeply hurt to see their Chief Minister stooping to such lowly depth".
"But I expected nothing better than this from a leader whose mind is debased and who is not only a rank opportunist but is also devoid of moral character and given to pursuits of unethical leisure and pleasure."
Amarinder is often on the firing line of his political opponents due to his close friendship with Pakistani journalist Aroosa Alam who lives with him in Chandigarh.
Badal, however, said that he is saddened (by the events) and that he has to hit back at those who hit below the belt.
"If according to you a person who has spent long years languishing in the country's worst and the darkest prison cells fighting for the cause of the nation, the state and of the Khalsa Panth is a coward, then what would you call someone who has never fought for any cause nor been to a prison for even a moment nor made any other sacrifice for any principle he believes in, if he does believe in any?" Badal, a five time Chief Minister, asked.
Badal said that Amarinder represented a party which is responsible for the worst and the most painful sacrilege against Guru Granth Sahib committed when (then Prime Minister) Indira Gandhi rolled tanks and mortars to destroy Akal Takhat during the Operation Blue Star on the Golden Temple complex in 1984.
"My mind and my conscience are absolutely clean in this regard. I have devoted my life and time for the peace and communal harmony of Punjab.A I am not scared of the threats being thrown by a hollow braggart who wastes his life in the pursuit of unethical pleasures.
"I have discharged with utmost honesty, transparency, dedication and commitment whatever sacred duty had been assigned to me by the people of Punjab," Badal, 90, said, adding that he will continue to serve the Punjabis till his last breath.
Regarding the firing on protestors opposing the sacrilege incidents, Badal made it clear that there were clear and firm instructions from him that the entire issue should be resolved through discussion and dialogue.
"At no stage was the issue of police firing even considered and nor were any orders passed by me in this regard," he pointed out.