The Shiromani Akali Dal on Friday demanded a CBI inquiry into the alleged attack on the cavalcade of party president Sukhbir Singh Badal in Sangrur on Thursday.At a joint press conference, senior SAD leaders Maheshinder Singh Grewal, Sharanjit Singh Dhillon and Daljit Singh Cheema alleged that the ruling Congress government was behind the attack.“The police have diluted the charges by refusing to book the assailants under Section 307 (attempt to murder), besides not observing the guidelines of the blue book which is compulsory in all such incidents involving people with Z-plus security,” they alleged.The leaders demanded that the Congress government immediately entrust the case to the CBI for investigation as “the State police could not be expected to give justice in the case”. The CBI alone can unmask the political conspiracy behind the incident and bring the real culprits to book, they said.Meeting with RajnathA party delegation would also meet Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh and apprise him of the incident.The SAD leaders said that the Congress was feeling insecure and rattled ahead of the Akali Dal’s proposed rally on October 7 at Patiala, the home town of Chief Minister Amarinder Singh.Mr. Badal’s cavalcade was attacked with sticks on Thursday, allegedly by people associated with radical Sikh outfits.
Himalayan States on Sunday came together at a conclave here to demand a separate Ministry to deal with problems endemic to them and a green bonus in recognition of their contribution to environment conservation.The twin demands formed part of a common agenda of the Himalayan States which was handed over to Union Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman at the end of the conclave, Uttarakhand Chief Minister Trivendra Singh Rawat told reporters after the event.Ten out of 11 States took part in the conclave. It is for the first time that the Himalayan States have come on a single platform to take a unanimous stand on the issue of green bonus and demanded a separate Ministry to deal with problems unique to them.Explaining the rationale behind the demand for a green bonus, Mr. Rawat said most of the country’s rivers originate in the Himalayas and therefore, the Himalayan States had to play the most significant role in the Prime Minister’s water conservation initiative.He said it was also necessary because the Himalayan States’ contribution to environmental conservation was the biggest with all their green cover. The Himalayan States were also at a disadvantage because large swathes of land fell into eco-sensitive zones where all sorts of development activities could not be carried out.A green bonus thus was needed to compensate the Himalayan States for their disadvantages, Mr. Rawat said.