Chandigarh, Oct 7 (PTI) Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh on Wednesday said the BKU (Lakhowal) faction's 'U-turn' on its petition against the new farm laws was the result of 'pressure' from the SAD, which seemed to be once again 'cozying up' with the BJP.
He also cited the 'close and old ties' of the Bhartiya Kisan Union (Lakhowal) with the Akalis.
The BKU (Lakhowal) had filed a petition in the Supreme Court against the new farm laws and later decided to withdraw it.
However, the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) on Tuesday had dubbed BKU (Lakhowal)'s move of filing the petition in the apex court as 'ill-advised' and said the party did not have anything to do with the petition.
The party had also said the farmers' body did not consult it before filing the petition.
The chief minister on Wednesday said BKU (Lakhowal) president Ajmer Singh Lakhowal's relations with the Akalis were well-known and he had remained the chairman of the Mandi Board for a decade under the Badal regime.
In a statement here, the chief minister said the sudden decision of the Lakhowal's organisation to back off from challenging the 'draconian' farm laws in the apex court indicated that he was acting at the behest of the SAD.
He warned other Kisan Unions to be cautious, and not to 'play into the hands of the Akalis,' who had been instrumental in the enactment of the farm laws in the first place in support of their allies, the BJP.
He termed SAD's statement on the issue, in which a party leader had said the BKU (Lakhowal) group should not have filed the petition without consulting other Kisan Unions, as 'gross and unwarranted interference' in the farmer organisations' fight.
The only explanation for such interference, said the CM, was that a 'deal' had been sealed by the Akalis with the BKU (Lakhowal) president, who clearly had no 'qualms about selling off' the interests of the farmers to keep his friends in SAD happy.
Amarinder Singh said the entire affair seemed to suggest a 'collusion, crafted by the BJP at the Centre to weaken the farmers' battle against the agriculture laws.' The chief minister warned the Akalis against playing these 'dangerous games', which he said would 'backfire' on them as the farmers would not take such actions lying down.
'If the Akalis, or their political masters in the BJP, believe that they would be able to mislead the farmers with these antics, they were grossly mistaken,' he said. PTI CHS VSD CK