As farmers protests against new farm laws continues to intense even when talks with the Centre are going on, NDA's former ally Shiromani Akali Dal chief Sukhbir Singh Badal on Thursday hit out at the BJP after a party leader had compared protesting farmers with Khalistanis. Slamming the government, Sukhbir Badal said, there are elderly women in farmer protests. Do they look like Khalistanis? It is a way of calling farmers of the country as anti-nationals. This is an insult to the farmers. How dare they call our farmers anti-nationals?
Sukhbir conitued and said, "Parkash Singh Badal (former Punjab CM) fought for farmers for his entire life. He returned his award to send a strong message to the government. Farmers don't need these laws so why the Government of India is forcing them on farmers?"
Does BJP or anybody else have the right to declare anybody as anti-national? These people (farmers) have dedicated their entire life to the nation & now you are calling them anti-national. People who are calling them anti-nationals are actually anti-nationals, he said.
Earlier in the day, former Punjab CM Parkash Singh Badal had returned Padma Vibhushan to protest "the betrayal of the farmers by govt of India".
Akali Dal had earlier ended its decades old ties with the NDA after the government went ahead with the new farm laws.