Chandigarh: Controversy is not new to Navjot Singh Sidhu. He has once again earned the wrath of chief minister Amarinder Singh and his cabinet colleagues. Mr Sidhu who has the backing of the Congress high command has in the past rubbed Mr Singh the wrong way more than once.
Navjot Singh Sidhu who was Congress partyâs star campaigner did not campaign in Punjab. When he came for campaigning for Congress in Bhatinda on the last day, he started a controversy by his âfriendly-matchâ jibe at Amarinder Singh, alluding to an alleged âsecret political dealâ with the Badal family of the rival Shiromani Akali Dal. Mr Sidhu had publicly taken a swipe at Mr Singh for not acting against the Badals on the 2015 sacrilege and firing incidents during the Akali-BJP rule. Before that, his wife Navjot Kaur had accused the Captain of denying her a Lok Sabha ticket.
The utterance did not go well with the state Congress unit. The first to attack Mr Sidhu was Amarinder Singh who accused him of âeyeing the chief ministerâs chairâ. The next day, three ministers, Brahm Mohindra, Sukhjinder Singh Randhawa and Sadhu Singh Dharamsot demanded Mr Sidhuâs resignation from the cabinet and asked the high command to take disciplinary action against him.
The chorus for the resignation of Punjab local bodies minister Navjot Singh Sidhu got louder as four more of his cabinet colleagues demanded that he quit the ministry if he doubted chief minister Captain Amarinder Singhâs leadership, signalling a full-blown slugfest in the state Congress ahead of the Lok Sabha election results.
Leading a well-synchronised attack on Tuesday were senior ministers Tripat Rajinder Singh Bajwa, Bharat Bhushan Ashu, Shyam Sundar Arora and Rana Gurmeet Singh Sodhi. âIf Sidhu doubts the integrity of Captain Amarinder and has no faith in his leadership, he should quit,â said Mr Bajwa, adding, âif he (Sidhu) is morally so strong, why is he sticking to his chair and working with a person he canât trust?â
Calling the cricketer-turned-politician a âparachute leaderâ â an allusion to his previous innings with the BJP â Mr Bajwa said that Mr Sidhu has no experience of organisation building and is thus ârepeatedly committing such mistakes that are hampering party prospectsâ.