The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Akali protests on Badal chargesheet

Chandigarh, Nov. 23 (PTI): Shiromani Akali Dal and BJP workers today staged blockades across Punjab disrupting traffic on highways to protest the filing of a chargesheet against former chief minister Parkash Singh Badal and five others in a disproportionate assets case.

The Punjab Vigilance Bureau had yesterday filed a chargesheet against Badal, his wife, son and close friends for creating “assets” of Rs 78.39 crore during the tenure of the Akali Dal-BJP government from 1997-2002.

Police sources said no untoward incident was reported during the over four-hour blockade which began at 11 am even as the Akali Dal claimed its supporters were lathicharged at some places.

BJP workers and leaders joined the protesters at several places to express solidarity with Badal, whose party is an ally in the BJP-led NDA government at the Centre.

While Badal, the Akali Dal president, described the rasta roko programme as a “complete and overwhelming success”, the state Congress termed it as a “flop show”.

“There was no public sentiment attached with the blockade programme... This is a corruption matter concerning a single family. They hardly managed a gathering of 150-200 odd people at different places and the police have done an excellent job in maintaining peace,” Punjab Congress chief H.S. Hanspal said.

Badal led the protesters at Wallha highway in Amritsar district and addressed thousands of Akali workers there.

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