Partap Singh Bajwa has opened a front against Amarinder Singh after the Chief Minister expressed his intention to contest the 2022 Punjab Assembly elections.
Assembly elections in Punjab are almost two years away from now, but growing resentment among a section of ruling Congress leaders has become a cause of concern for the leadership. Three days after Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh said he will contest the next elections, former PPCC chief Partap Singh Bajwa opened a front against the CM, even calling for his exit.
Bajwa, also a Rajya Sabha MP, on Monday said that Amarinder Singh, 78, should make way for others in the next state Assembly polls. According to a report in The Indian Express, Bajwa has asked Amarinder to “keep his promise and make way for others to hold the reins of the party in the state”.
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“I have brotherly advice for the CM because I respect him a lot. Out of this respect I want to remind him of the promise he made ahead of the 2017 Assembly election that this would be his last election. He should quit in time like cricket star Sachin Tendulkar. There is honour in quitting in time,” Bajwa said.
Earlier on Friday, Amarinder Singh had expressed his intention to contest the next Assembly elections in the state, He, however, said that the decision on leading the party rested with the Congress president. He said that the decision to enter the fray in 2022 came after several party colleagues approached him to persuade to overturn his 2017 decision.
Singh had in 2017 termed the polls as his last election. Bajwa was referring to Singh’s promise. Speaking to The Indian Express, Bajwa said people are sick of Amarinder Singh and SAD politician and former CM Parkash Singh Badal’s rule.
“They want change. Captain Sahib should quit and allow someone else to steer the ship away from a fast approaching iceberg. A man’s character is known by the promises he keeps,” he said.
Bajwa said once Amarinder exits honourably, “let the party high command take a call on whom to hand over the reins of the party”.
“For any defence force or a political party, the choice of Captain should be made on the right mix of three ingredients: seniority, loyalty and capability,” he added.