Shahkot By-Poll: SAD demands deployment of paramilitary forces
Chandigarh/New Delhi – A delegation of the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) on Friday met the Chief Election Commissioner (CEC) Om Prakash Rawat in New Delhi and appealed to him to provide a senior officer to overlook Shahkot bye-poll on May 28, and deploy paramilitary forces to ensure a free and fair election. The delegation, led by the party’s secretary general and MP Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa, alleged that Chief Minister Amarinder Singh was resorting to phone tapping of rivals and asked the CEC to inquire into the alleged violations of the Model Code of Conduct. The delegation submitted a memorandum in this regard to the CEC, a party release said here.Giving details of the alleged violations, Dhindsa said that on May 7, the chief minister held a press conference on the Shahkot by-poll in his official capacity at the Punjab Bhawan in Chandigarh with senior government officials in attendance. “Captain Amarinder Singh carried out a campaign against his own officer, the SHO of Mehatpur, who was associated with the conduct of the Shahkot by-poll,” the memorandum stated. “The Chief Minister also violated the model code by welcoming leaders of other parties into the Congress fold on the occasion,” read the memorandum. Dhindsa alleged that the chief minister, in the same official meeting, also issued a clean chit to Congress candidate Hardev Singh Laddi Sherowalia despite the fact that his own police had booked him in an illegal mining case.’ About the phone tapping charges, Dhindsa said, “Captain Amarinder Singh also talked about phone calls made by Mehatpur SHO Parminder Bajwa to political leaders of SAD and AAP with specific times making it clear that the government was indulging in phone tapping.” The delegation asked the EC to take the entire issue of registration of criminal case against the Congress candidate as well as pressure put on SHO Mehatpur to rescind his decision to register an FIR against Laddi in its own hands, the release said.
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