Home Top Stories Navjot Sidhu Meets Sonia Gandhi, Rahul Gandhi As Punjab Infighting Worsens

Navjot Sidhu Meets Sonia Gandhi, Rahul Gandhi As Punjab Infighting Worsens


Navjot Sidhu met Congress president Sonia Gandhi in Delhi. (File)

Highlights

  • Amarinder Singh is believed to be resistant to Navjot Sidhu’s promotion
  • On Thursday, tensions peaked after reports of Mr Sidhu’s promotion
  • Navjot Singh Sidhu met with Sonia Gandhi, Rahul Gandhi in Delhi today

New Delhi:
Navjot Sidhu met with Congress president Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi today in Delhi, a day after a dramatic escalation in the party’s Punjab crisis with a flurry of meetings between rival factions as a peace formula appeared to be a non-starter.

Here’s your 10-point cheatsheet to this big story:

  1. Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh is believed to be resistant to the Congress leadership’s plan to elevate his rival Navjot Sidhu as state Congress chief, replacing Sunil Jakhar.

  2. Congress’s Punjab in-charge Harish Rawat, who was present in the meeting, told reporters later that he had “never said” Navjot Sidhu would be Punjab Congress chief. “Once Sonia Gandhi makes a decision we will let you know,” Mr Rawat said.

  3. It was Mr Rawat’s comments yesterday on a compromise formula that set off rumours about Mr Sidhu’s promotion and a shake-up in the Punjab cabinet.

  4. According to the plan, the Punjab Congress would also have two working presidents, “one from the Dalit community and the other a Hindu face”.

  5. Tensions peaked on Thursday over the rumoured changes. By 9 pm, both Amarinder Singh and Mr Sidhu had rounded up MLAs and ministers on their side and gone into separate meetings.

  6. Mr Sidhu held a meeting with six MLAs, including three cabinet ministers —  Sukhjinder Singh Randhawa, Charanjit Singh Channi and Tript Rajinder Bajwa – who have openly rebelled against Mr Singh. Sources said the ministers feared sacking in the anticipated cabinet changes.

  7. On the other hand, the Chief Minister went into a huddle with party MLAs and MPs supporting him at his private farmhouse in Mohali.

  8. The Chief Minister had met Sonia Gandhi last week, after which he said he would accept “whatever decision is taken by the Congress high command”.

  9. The feud between Amarinder Singh and Navjot Sidhu, festering since the Congress won the Punjab election in 2017, has endangered the party’s re-election bid next year.

  10. Mr Sidhu, who quit the BJP and joined the Congress just before the 2017 election, has been fighting for a bigger slice of power but has so far been stymied by the Chief Minister.



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