Sushil Goyal, Tribune News Service
Bathinda, September 28. President of the People’s Party of Punjab (PPP) Manpreet Singh Badal said today that “for the formation of a credible alternative in the ensuing assembly elections, we are open for talks with other parties, including the BSP and the SAD (Longowal)”. But he clarified that as of now, the PPP was not holding talks, either formal or informal, with any party, except for the CPI and the CPM. Regarding talks with the Lok Bhalai Party (LBP) for a poll alliance, his answer was “no”.
On the possibility of issuing an invitation to the BSP or the SAD (Longowal) for an election alliance, Manpreet said: “We can’t send an invitation to these parties through newspapers. However, if I get an opportunity to meet any of the leaders of these parties, I will approach them on the issue.”
Manpreet was here to inaugurate a blood donation camp organised by his party to celebrate the birth anniversary of Shaheed Bhagat Singh at Bibi Wala road. Manpreet was among those to donate blood.
As many as 26 units of blood were collected by a team of the blood bank of the local civil hospital.
Regarding seat sharing with the CPI and the CPM, Manpreet said a meeting of the PPP, the CPI and the CPM leaders would be held on October 5 where everything would be decided, including the common minimum programme.
The alliance would contest all the 117 seats, he added. Manpreet said he would not hire chopper for canvassing in the elections as his car would do. He said he would bring disgruntled persons from other parties into his party fold.
When told that a former SAD minister was interested in contesting the elections on his party ticket, Manpreet said he should approach the PPP leadership for the purpose.
Regarding the selection of candidates, he said the candidates would be selected by committees, formed on the pattern of the Green Light Committees, which were constituted in a few foreign countries to select candidates. Such committees had retired judges and VCs as members, he explained. Regarding clemency to Devinder Pal Singh Bhullar, Manpreet said the government should understand and respect the sentiments of the people of the state.
After his exit from the SAD, Manpreet said he was enjoying every moment of his life as he was now free to speak his mind and do whatever he believed in.