Four people suffered bullet injuries after workers of the Shiromani Akali Dal and the Congress clashed during nomination filing for the Jalalabad municipal council elections in Fazilka district on Tuesday.
SAD president and former Punjab deputy chief minister Sukhbir Singh Badal had a narrow escape when his SUV got caught in the clash at the Jalalabad tehsil office.
“Though Sukhbir Singh Badal escaped unhurt, his vehicle was damaged in the stone-pelting,” his media adviser, Jangveer Singh, said.
The SAD chief was at his political bastion to oversee the filing of nominations by his party leaders. “It was a blatant attack on Sukhbir, a Z protectee, who represents Ferozepur in the Lok Sabha. His vehicle was targeted by the mob led by Jalalabad Congress MLA Raminder Singh Awala,” he said.
He said at least three Akali workers were hit by bullets and several others injured in the stone-pelting.
Sukhbir could not be contacted as his personal team said the leader was busy briefing the Lok Sabha Speaker.
When contacted, Awala charged Sukhbir with creating a ruckus and inciting his supporters to attack the Congress workers.
He said at least one Congress activist suffered bullet injuries and more than six got head injuries in the stone-pelting.
“Nominations by SAD and others for the nearby Arniwala local body elections went on peacefully on Monday. But today, Sukhbir brought workers from other places as a show of strength at Jalalabad. He had lost the last byelection to me from Jalalabad. Akali workers opened fire at our team and they resorted to violence,” Awala said.
Leaders of both parties blamed each other for carrying firearms during electioneering that triggered the violence.
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