What the Congress could not do in Punjab- making Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's credentials as the first Sikh PM an issue- the Shiromani Gurudwara Prabandhak Committee (SGPC) and the ruling Akali Dal have done.
Remarks by SGPC President Avtar Singh Makkar at political rallies for the Akali Dal and alliance partner Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) that "Manmohan Singh is not a Sikh as he has done nothing for the community" have given a new direction to politics in the run-up to the two-phase poll on May 7 and 13 for Punjab's 13 Lok Sabha seats.
It has given the Congress a stick to beat the Akalis with and has put the Akali Dal on the defensive.
Image: Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal along with Shiromini Akali Dal Lok Sabha candidate from Jalandhar Hans Raj Hans and BJP leader Balbir Punj during an election campaign rally in Jalandhar on Tuesday, April 21, 2009.
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