Announces new party ahead of Punjab polls Expressing his anguish over Sidhu, Amarinder said, “Sidhu is an acolyte of the Pakistani deep state who had publicly hugged the Pakistan Army chief Gen Bajwa and PM Imran Khan”
FORMER Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh on Tuesday resigned from the Congress and announced the name of his party -- ‘Punjab Lok Congress’--just months before the Punjab Assembly polls. The party will be formally launched later and the Election Commission has no objection to the proposed name, ‘Punjab Lok Congress’, he said. The move by the former CM came days after he dismissed reports of back-end talks with the Congress, saying the time for rapprochement is over. In his seven-page resignation letter, Amarinder Singh also slammed the Gandhis for a “conspiracy” to oust him from the State Government. In the letter to Congress President Sonia Gandhi, he listed out his achievements as Chief Minister. He also lashed out at Punjab Congress chief Navjot Singh Sidhu and senior party leader Harish Rawat. Amarinder Singh had resigned as the Punjab CM after a bitter power tussle with Sidhu. Expressing his anguish over Sidhu being given the charge of the Punjab Congress chief, he said, “Despite my profound reservations and over the unanimous advice of almost all MPs from Punjab, you chose to appoint an acolyte of the Pakistani deep state Navjot Sidhu who had publicly hugged the Pakistan Army chief Gen Bajwa and Prime Minister Imran Khan.”
“Khan and Bajwa are the people responsible for sending terrorists across the border to kill Indians,” he said. In the letter, he told Sonia Gandhi that despite knowing him “for the better part of his 52 years in public life” and “that too at a deeply personal level”, she never “understood” him or his “character”. “You thought I was getting on in years and should be put to pasture. I am neither tired nor retired. I feel I have a lot to give and contribute to my beloved Punjab. I intend to soldier on and not fade away,” wrote Singh.
Hitting out at the former cricketer, he said, “Sidhu’s only claim to fame was that he would abuse me and my Government on a regular basis. I am old enough to be his father but that did not stop him from using the filthiest and most vile language against me both publicly and privately.” He accused Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi Vadra of “patronising” Sidhu. “Unfortunately, rather than being reined in, he was patronised by Rahul and Priyanka, while you chose to turn a blind eye to the shenanigans of this gentleman who was aided and abetted by the general secretary in-charge Harish Rawat, perhaps the most dubious individual I had the occasion to make acquaintance off,” he wrote.