Chandigarh: Congress on Wednesday sharpened its attack on Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) calling it a "safe sanctuary" for criminals.
Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee (PPCC) chief Partap Singh Bajwa took a swipe at Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal, alleging that his family harbours criminals to further their political interests.
In a statement issued here, Bajwa claimed that every time an Akali leader is caught for involvement in a criminal activity, Badal comes out with excuses, they either disown the party member or take the stand that the member have been expelled sometime back for anti-party activities.
The Congress leader claimed that there was long list of active members of SAD or Youth Akali Dal who were caught on the wrong foot and later disowned and it may not be coincidence that majority of them were close confidants of Revenue Minister Bikram Singh Majithia.
Bajwa said that drug smuggler Maninder Singh Aulakh, who was arrested by Patiala police in synthetic drug racket, is not an ordinary member of Akali Dal.
He was protege of Majithia and many other Akali leaders of Majha area, Bajwa claimed.
The Congress leader said that Badal could not deny their patronage to Aulakh after his pictures with Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal and three other ministers had appeared in a section of media recently.
Bajwa alleged that the police was working under political pressure and many cases of highhandedness by Akali workers were not registered.
He also sought CBI probe or Narcotics Control Bureau (NCB) investigation into the international drug racket alleging involvement of senior SAD leaders in the case.