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Defiant Bibi Jagir Kaur pokes Badal in the eye by contesting crucial SGPC elections

Bibi Jagir Kaur

The coming election to the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC) – mini-Parliament of Sikhs – has put Akali Dal president Sukhbir Badal in a difficult situation with senior party leader Bibi Jagir Kaur deciding to contest, with or without the support of the party chief. Bibi this time seems to challenge aim to do away with the monopoly of the Badal family which used to send the name of their choice for the SGPC president in a “lifafa” (envelope).


The beleaguered Akali Dal which lost two Assembly elections in a row is finding it difficult to reach a consensus to select a candidate to head the SGPC. Considered a confidante of Parkash Singh Badal, Bibi Jagir Kaur today formally stated to contest the election. She was first made the SGPC Chief in 1996 and remained in the position twice.

Not bothering about the decision of the president of the party, Bibi has already started contacting SGPC members seeking their support for the post of president of the religious body. She is reported to have met Sukhbir Badal a couple of days back but he did not make any commitment to nominate her as the official candidate of the party.

Talking to indianarrative.com over the phone, Bibi said, “I requested the party to give me another chance to serve (do Sewa) of the panth but they seem to have some other plans.”

She emphasised that a time had come when the people, the ‘Sangat,’ would not accept the archaic ‘lifafa’ system to select SGPC president. Likes or dislikes of a single person should not be imposed on the ‘panth’, she added.

Prof Prem Singh Chandumajra, general secretary and a spokesman of the Akali Dal said, “The party will announce its official candidate for the SGPC president after Diwali.”

He said that efforts were made to reach a consensus but Bibi announced her decision in advance. The party was now left with no other option but to field its candidate. It would be a real-time fight, he added.

Stung by the campaign launched by a defiant Bibi, Sukhbir recently visited the residences of some of the SGPC members including that of Major Singh in Rampura Phul ostensibly to convince them to wait for the declaration of the party’s official candidate for the post of SGPC president.

The position of Sukhbir Badal within the party after the exit of Badal senior from active politics is being questioned by rebels like Jagmeet Brar, senior vice-president, and Manpreet Singh Aaiyali, legislature party leader in the Assembly and now Bibi Jagir Kaur. There are reports that differences have also cropped up between Sukhbir and his brother-in-law Bikramjit Singh Majithia.

Bibi, who was a cabinet minister in the Parkash Singh Badal government, had also contested the parliamentary election from Khadoor Sahib in 2019 but lost due to stiff opposition from within the party. She believed that she lost due to the machinations of Majithia. She is known to harbour a grudge against Sukhbir as he could not rein in his brother-in-law.

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