In a continued act of defiance, Punjab Cabinet Minister Navjot Singh Sidhu, who has raised a banner of the revolt against Chief Minister Amarinder Singh, failed to resume his new charge. Almost all ministers, except Sidhu, have taken charge of their newlly allocated departments.
Earlier this week, the brewing confrontation between CM Amarinder and Sidhu had escalated further with CM tripped Sidhu of key portfolios. Sidhu was removed from the responsibility of managing the crucial Local Bodies department and instead assigned a less weighty Power, New and Renewable Energy Sources portfolio.
Sidhu is believed to be camping in the national capital to have an audience with party's top leadership. Sidhu enjoys a great deal of proximity to the party chief Rahul Gandhi and AICC general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra.
Since Congress President Rahul Gandhi is away on a trip to Wayanad, Sidhu is likely to meet Priyanka Gandhi and Ahmed Patel in a day or two. He may also stay put in New Delhi till the return of Congress president.
CM Amarinder had earlier blamed Sidhu’s dismal handling of the department for the Congress poor performance in the urban areas. Congress bagged eight out of the 14 Lok Sabha seats in the just concluded national elections.
CM Amarinder also is reportedly upset over Sidhu’s controversial remarks on sacrilege issue as well as blaming the Chief Minister for denial of party ticket to his wife Navjot Kaur from Chandigarh Lok Sabha constituency.
Sidhu however refuted the CM Amarinder ’s contention and claimed that the party performed well better in cities compared to rural areas. “Of the 117 Assembly segments, the results for the urban and semi-urban areas were 63 per cent, winning 34 out of 54 seats.”
Sidhu had questioned the probe into the desecration of religious texts in 2015, asking why no action was taken against the Badals, who headed the previous government in the state.
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