Chandigarh: The political wing of
Sirsa-based Dera Sacha Sauda will take a final call on Friday
on whom to support in the ensuing Punjab Assembly polls due on
"The political wing`s seven-member committee will hold an
elaborate meeting on January 27 in which our members from
various districts of Punjab will take part. The issue (on whom
to support) will be discussed threadbare and a final decision
will be taken depending on the outcome of the meeting," head
of Dera`s political wing Ram Singh said on Wednesday.
Singh said that over 5,000 members from various parts of
the state attended a two-day conclave at the Dera headquarters
in Sirsa, which concluded on Monday evening.
"We received a number of written suggestions from
followers and members, but no final decision could be taken on
that day," he said with regards to support call to candidates.
Politicians from both the opposition Congress and ruling
Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) have been making a beeline to seek
blessings of the Dera Chief who enjoys considerable influence
among the people in Punjab, Haryana and other areas in the
Ram Singh said among those who had paid a visit to the
sect yesterday included Union Minister of State for External
Affairs Preneet Kaur and her son Raninder Singh yesterday.
He added that nearly 55-60 candidates of the ruling
Shiromani Akali Dal had paid a visit to the Dera.
However, Dera sources said that for the forthcoming polls
the political wing has not issued any directions so far even
though leaders of various parties are visiting the sect Chief.
The Dera followers had supported the Congress candidates
in the Malwa region, including Bathinda and adjoining
districts, in the 2007 Assembly polls.
The Dera Chief has been involved in various
controversies, including his attiring himself in a dress
similar to that of the 10th Sikh Guru Gobind Singh which had
triggered communal violence between the Dera followers and the
Sikhs in May 2007.