CHANDIGARH: The Shiromani Akali Dal and the BJP on Thursday decided to form a high-level coordination committee following a meeting the saffron party chief Amit Shah had with the former Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal and other senior Akali leaders. Shah also met SAD president and former deputy chief minister Sukhbir Singh Badal at the residence of the Badals here and discussed matters of mutual and national interest.Later, in a statement, Sukhbir Badal described the meeting as “most positive, result-oriented and fruitful.” He said that the two sides discussed a wide range of issues in an atmosphere of complete cordiality, trust and mutual respect. Describing the Akali-BJP alliance as the oldest and the most durable in the country, he said that the coming together of these parties represented the social consensus in Punjab. “It is much more than a political alliance and symbolises the sacred sentiment of peace and communal harmony in the state,” he said.Meanwhile, the SAD and BJP agreed to form a high-level coordination committee comprising senior leaders from the two sides to ensure close working of the parties at every level. The Akali leaders thanked the BJP led NDA government at the centre for its magnanimous gesture of exempting all purchases for Guru Ka langar from GST.They also thanked the Centre for allocating Rs 800 crore for sugar cane growers in Punjab out of a total of Rs 8000 crore for the entire country. This will be a big relief for the Punjab farmers growing sugar cane, Sukhbir said. The two sides also agreed that that the 550th anniversary of the Parkash Utsav of Guru Nanak Dev should be celebrated as a national and global event, he said.
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