Acrimony Bubbles Up in Punjab Cong Again as Sidhu Snubs Successor to Meet Disgruntled Leaders Instead

The Punjab Congress seems to have learnt no lessons from the drubbing in recently held Punjab Assembly elections, with the state leaders continuing to squabble over supremacy despite top organisational changes.

The party high command recently effected organisational changes, making Gidderbaha MLA Amrinder Raja Warring the PCC chief, hoping that infusion of young blood could enthuse state leaders. But days after the appointment, factionalism seems to have taken roots again.

As Warring went to Amritsar along with working president Bharat Bhushan Ashu to meet senior party leaders on Friday, his predecessor Navjot Singh Sidhu, a former legislator from the city, was seen meeting disgruntled party leaders elsewhere.

Sidhu met former MLA Amrik Dhillon, who has been expelled from the party, besides senior leader Lal Singh and former PCC chief Sunil Jakhar at their residence in Chandigarh and Panchkula, respectively.

Jakhar has been issued show-cause notice by the party for alleged derogatory remarks against party leaders and accusing the leadership of thinking on communal lines while deciding the Punjab Congress Legislature Party (CLP) leader.

The party’s diktat of zero tolerance towards indiscipline seems to have failed to deter leaders like former MLAs Navtej Cheema, Ashwani Sekhri, Rajinder Singh and Sukhwinder Singh Danny, who have been seen standing beside Sidhu during his meetings with party leaders over the past few days.

Sidhu, before the appointment of Warring, had gone on an overdrive to meet leaders hoping either he or someone close to him could be made the PCC chief, but that didn’t happen.

“Obviously, it hasn’t gone down well with him. The fact that he skipped a meeting of the newly elected chief and went to meet disgruntled leaders indicates that he is clearly upset,” said a senior leader.

Interestingly, even CLP leader Partap Singh Bajwa, who was seen alongside Warring and other newly appointed PCC office-bearers while paying obeisance at religious places in Amritsar, skipped Friday’s meeting. Majha leaders Sukhjinder Randhawa and Tript Rajinder Bajwa were also not seen in the holy city.

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