The Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) today said Punjab chief minister Capt Amarinder Singh was violating the model code of conduct besides threatening law enforcement agencies and demanded posting of a senior officer to overlook the Shahkot by-poll as well as deployment of para-military forces to ensure a free and fair election.A SAD delegation led by its secretary general and mp Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa and including mps Balwinder Singh Bhundur and Naresh Gujral besides senior vice presidents Maheshinder Singh Grewal and Dr Daljit Singh Cheema submitted a memorandum in this regard to the Election Commission headed by CEC Om Prakash Rawat and briefed him that the chief minister was resorting to phone tapping of rivals and asked him to inquire into all these violations of the model code of conduct.Briefing the EC, the delegation thanked it for transferring an SDM and two SHO’s on the complaint of the SAD but said violations of the model code were continuing ceaselessly.
Giving details it said on May 7 the CM held a press conference on the Shahkot by-poll in his official capacity at the Punjab Bhawan in Chandigarh with senior government officials in attendance. It said Capt Amarinder carried out a campaign against his own officer – the SHO of Mehatpur who was associated with the conduct of the Shahkot by-poll. It said the CM also violated the model code by welcoming leaders of other parties into the Congress fold on the occasion.Mr Sukhdev Dhindsa while briefing the EC said the CM in the same official meeting also functioned as spokesperson of the Congress party and issued a clean chit to Congress candidate Mr Hardev Singh Ladi Sherowalia despite the fact that his own police had booked him in an illegal mining case. He said Capt Amarinder also talked about phone calls made by Mehatpur SHO Parminder Bajwa to political leaders of SAD and AAP with specific times making it clear that the government was indulging in phone tapping.The delegation asked the EC to take the entire issue of registration of criminal case against the Congress candidate as well as pressure put on SHO Mehatpur to rescind his decision to register an FIR against Hardev Laadi in its own hands. It also demanded an inquiry into the incidents of phone tapping besides instructions to the State government not to intimidate officials engaged in poll duty in Shahkot to ensure a free and fair poll.