The Congress disciplinary committee on Tuesday recommended suspending former Punjab chief Sunil Jakhar from the party for two years in view of the “anti-party” activities he engaged in. The committee, however, has left final decision with party chief Sonia Gandhi.
Jakhar had criticised former chief minister Charanjit Singh Channi and termed him as a liability for the party after the Congress lost to the Aam Aadmi Party in Punjab.
Some party leaders including former minister Raj Kumar Verka had demanded action against him after accusing Jakhar of using objectionable language against Channi and the scheduled caste community during a TV interview. But Jakhar had rejected the charge and had said that his statement was twisted and taken out of context. He had also expressed regret if anybody was hurt by his comments.
Jakhar had earlier created a flutter when he claimed that 42 MLAs wanted him to be the chief minister and only two backed Channi after the unceremonious exit of Amarinder Singh last year. Jakhar was among the front runners for the chief ministerial post after Amarinder Singh was unseated last year.
The chances of Jakhar becoming the chief minister were scuttled after the statement of party leader Ambika Soni, who had said the party should go with a Sikh face.
Jakhar on Tuesday said those who still have a conscience will be punished. The Congress disciplinary committee had on April 11 given a show-cause notice to Jakhar for alleged anti-party activities and sought a reply within a week.
However, Jakhar chose not to reply to the panel. Aaj, sar kalam honge unke jinme abhi zameer baaki hai. (Today, those with a conscience will be beheaded). (My apologies to Javed Akhtar Saheb), said Jakhar in a tweet.