National

Shah Pays Homage To Parkash Singh Badal, Calls Akali Stalwart 'Bhaichare Ka Sardar'

Shah said the death of Badal was an irreparable loss to not only Punjab but also to the country.

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Amit Shah at Parkash Badals Antim Ardas
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Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Thursday called Akali Dal patriarch Parkash Singh Badal "bhaichare ka sardar" for fostering brotherhood and dedicating his life to Hindu-Sikh unity.

Shah said the death of Badal was an irreparable loss to not only Punjab but also to the country.

"With the passing away of Badal, the Sikh community has lost a true soldier, the country has lost a patriot, the farmers have lost a true sympathiser, and politics has lost a great man who set high standards," he said.

Stating that Badal laid the foundation stone of a new Punjab, he lauded the five-time Punjab chief minister for always trying to show the correct path. "During the Emergency, Parkash Singh Badal firmly stood to protect democracy. Whether it was the Kargil War or the fight against terror, on every front, Badal Sahab always stood like a shield for the national interest," he added.

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Shah, along with Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla, Union ministers Gajendra Singh Shekhawat and Som Parkash and senior BJP leader Tarun Chugh, visited Badal village in Muktsar district to pay tributes to Parkash Singh Badal, who died on April 25 at the age of 95.

The Shiromani Akali Dal leader had not been keeping well and was admitted to the Fortis Hospital in Mohali on April 16 after he complained of uneasiness while breathing.

On Thursday, a 'bhog' ceremony and 'Antim Ardas' were organised for the veteran leader in his village. Former Haryana Chief Minister O P Chautala, Congress leader Sachin Pilot, Radha Soami Satsang Beas chief Gurinder Singh Dhillon, Akal Takht Jathedar Giani Harpreet Singh and SGPC chief Harjinder Singh Dhami also attended the programme.

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Addressing a gathering after taking part in the 'Antim Ardas', Shah said the void created by Badal's death was difficult to fill, he said. Badal lived his life like an 'Ajatashatru', the one without enemies, Shah said.

“With Parkash Singh Badal's demise, 'bhaichare (brotherhood) ka sardar' has gone. He dedicated his life for Hindu-Sikh unity,” said Shah. Despite facing opposition politically, he always made efforts to keep everyone united, Shah said.

He said though they belonged to two different parties, Badal always suggested "what was good for my party as well.”

SAD and BJP parted ways after remaining allies for a long time. The SAD walked out of the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance in September 2020 in protest against three farms bills brought by the Centre then. 

Shah also said that SAD chief Sukhbir Singh Badal has told him that Parkash Singh Badal had got a temple, a mosque and a gurdwara built in Badal village. "From 1970 till today, whenever the time came to stand for the country, Badal sahab never showed his back," he said.

Referring to Badal's imprisonment during his long career, Shah said Badal fought for principles and 'panth'. Badal stood like a rock against Emergency to protect democracy, Shah said.

The Union minister urged people to take inspiration from Badal's life and follow the path shown by him. Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla lauded Badal for contributing to the prosperity of Punjab.

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He said Badal started his political career as a sarpanch and later became the Chief Minister of Punjab. Birla said Badal always worked for the welfare of farmers, poor and other weaker sections of the society.

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