Punjabiyat: Punjabi Identity Is Badal's, Kejriwal is outsider
With less than four months to go for polls, the embattled Badal family in Punjab is putting good challenge to Arvind Kejriwal and his Aam Aadmi Party. From putting up Congress leader Amrinder Singh as their main opponent and kejriwal as outsider- although the Gandhis haven't yet declared him their choice for chief minister - to invoking Punjabiyat at a glittering golden jubilee celebration of Punjab Day, there's a effort to brand Kejriwal an ``outsider'' with subtle reminders of his Haryanvi roots.
It was BJP state president Vijay Sampla who let the cat out of the bag. In his speech at the Punjab Day function in Amritsar on November 1, he pleaded for a crushing defeat to ``outsiders'' who are trying to pull down Punjab and tarnish its image.
A party insider mused that Punjab Day was celebrated for the first time ever although it is a red letter day in the history of the Akali Dal which had led a tumultuous movement for the creation of a separate Sikh majority state. In 1966, Punjab, already wounded by Partition, was further divided with the creation of Hindu majority Haryana.
BJP is also gearing up for the Punjab election, wih just 4 months to go. BJP has planned a rally to be addressed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in December, besides a program where party chief Amit Shah will address booth-level workers in the state.
With Congress ccusing the SAD-BJP government of having failed on all fronts, BJP has decided to contest the polls on the plank of development work carried out by the current regime in last 10 years, while highlighting the "failures" of the opposition parties.