Controversy erupts after Sidhu’s photo with Khalistani activist in Pakistan, BJP asks Rahul Gandhi, ‘What’s cooking’

Congress leader Navjot Singh Sidhu with Khalistani activist Gopal Singh Chawla (right). (Facebook/Gopal Singh Chawla)

Punjab Chief Minister Navjot Singh Sidhu sparked fresh controversy after a photograph of him with Khalistani activist Gopal Singh Chawla was posted on Chawl’s Facebook wall on Thursday.

Chawla is associated with Pakistan Sikh Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (PSGPC), and was allegedly in “regular touch” with a member of ‘terror module’ intercepted by Punjab Police earlier this month.

Chawla had earlier stopped the Indian High Commission officials from entering gurdwaras in Nankana Sahib in connection with the birthday celebrations of Guru Nanak Dev and was, in a viral video, heard telling the officials that there were Khalistani supporters inside.

The ruling party BJP immediately condemned the meeting and asked Congress chief Rahul Gandhi if he “planned to disturb Punjab again like Indira Gandhi”.

On Twitter, BJP leader Tajinder Bagga said, “Sidhu met Khalistani terrorist Gopal Chawla in Pakistan. What’s cooking Rahul Gandhi? Four days ago, Punjab Police had exposed the Khalistani involvement in Amritsar terrorist attack and yesterday, your leader met the Khalistani terrorist. Are you planning to disturb Punjab again like Indira Gandhi?”

On Wednesday, Union Minister of India Harsimrat Kaur Badal had hit out at Sidhu over his “good relations” with Pakistan, saying the Congress leader seems to be getting “more love and respect” from the neighbouring country than in India.

Speaking to news agency ANI, the minister had said, “He (Imran Khan) offered him (Navjot Singh Sidhu) to fight elections from Pakistan. He (Sidhu) seems to have more love and respect in Pakistan than what I noticed over here. He has some good relationships over there.”


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