As Sunny Deol Says No Link to Deep Sidhu, Old Photo of Duo Emerges
Sidhu had not only aided Deol’s campaign, they had also appeared together during film promotions in 2015.
After a video of actor Deep Sidhu with protesters hoisting the Nishan Sahib flag at the Red Fort during the farmers’ rally on 26 January went viral, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) MP from Gurdaspur and actor Sunny Deol issued a statement on Twitter, distancing himself from Sidhu.
Deol stated that he was saddened by what happened at the Red Fort, and asserted that, “I or my family have no relations with Deep Sidhu.”
Sidhu has emerged as an important voice of the farmers’ protest against the three farm laws. He was part of the sit-in at Shambhu Barrier in Punjab's Patiala district, when the protest began in September and has remained at the forefront ever since.
On 26 January, the Punjabi actor shared a Facebook live where he can be seen among the farmers hoisting the Nishan Sahib flag at the Red Fort. In another live, he issued a clarification, saying the Indian national flag was not removed from the flagpole and they only hoisted the Kisan Mazdoor Ekta’s flag and the Nishan Sahib. The act was also condemned by several farmer leaders for turning the protests communal.
Sidhu’s Image with Deol, PM Modi And Shah
Hereafter, a picture of him with Deol, Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Amit Shah went viral on social media, with opposition leaders alleging Sidhu’s affiliation to the BJP.
The images were also tweeted by lawyer and activist Prashant Bhushan.
The pictures are from April 2019, when BJP had announced Deol’s candidacy for the Lok Sabha elections in Punjab’s Gurdaspur.
Sidhu, who had been aiding the actor’s campaign, met PM Modi on 28 April 2019. The Prime Minister had also tweeted a photo with Deol back then, in the same attire as that of the viral image.
The viral image could be traced to a photo gallery by Times, copyrighted to Bennett, Coleman and Company Limited.
We found that the image of Sidhu with Amit Shah is from 19 April 2019, when he along with Deol had met the Home Minister at the Pune Airport.
In an image from the meeting, shared by BJP’s Tarun Rathi, Shah can be seen in the same attire and room as the viral image.
Not Connected with Sidhu: Deol
However, Deol has denied any connection to the controversial Punjabi actor.
Apart from his recent tweet, he had also clarified on 6 December that he was not affiliated to Sidhu or any of his actions during the farmers’ protest.
In a statement he says, “Deep Sidhu, who was with me at the time of election, has not been with me for a long time, whatever he is saying and doing, he is doing according to his will, I have nothing to do with any of his activities.”
He further says that he is with the party and the farmers.
Social Media Users Call out Deol-Sidhu Connection
While the BJP MP maintains he’s not connected to Sidhu, social media users were quick to point out the duo’s long-standing camaraderie.
Sidhu had not only aided Deol’s campaign, they had also appeared together during the promotions of Sidhu’s first film, ‘Ramta Jogi’, which came out in 2015.
A Twitter user shared a now viral clip of the duo’s interview back in August 2015, in which Deol calls Sidhu a ‘younger brother’ and says that he has known him for a long time.
A longer version of the interview can also be viewed here.
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