A few days after political strategist Prashant Kishor refused to sign up to manage the campaign of Punjab CM for 2022 Assembly elections, Capt Amarinder Singh hosted him at his personal residence near Chandigarh on Wednesday.
Sources close to Kishor said both had a meeting but “he (Kishor) has not agreed to take up Punjab Congress campaign and he was firm on the issue. He has made it clear that his (Kishor’s) credibility in the state was linked to how the CM delivers on the promises made during the last Assembly election”.
Amarinder has been trying to get Kishor on board to design his strategy for 2022 Assembly polls. The CM has also made it clear that he would be contesting the next election. Kishor had designed Amarinder’s campaign in 2017 election also and the party had won with an impressive mandate by winning 77 out of 117 seats.
“The CM has been pursuing him. He had invited him to his residence. Kishor accepted the invite as it would have been disrespectful towards a CM if he had kept refusing. He had gone there as a family member. But there is no change in his stand as of now,” a source close to him said.
Kishor it is learnt to have spent several hours at Amarinder’s house and stayed the night there. He left only on Thursday after meeting senior functionaries of the government and the Congress.
“Kishor has already made it clear that he is not interested in (working for) the Punjab Congress. He has not visited the state in the last three years….They are pursuing him. But he has not agreed,” said the source.
Sources in Punjab government, however, said that he was “relenting” and there was a high probability that he would be taking up Amarinder’s campaign.
While Amarinder is interested in bringing him on board, party General Secretary incharge Asha Kumari had said that Congress was not signing Kishor. It is also learnt that she had expressed her reservations about Kishor to the CM during a meeting.
Later, Amarinder had called him a “family member”. Amarinder’s aide had also called up several MLAs to get their take on whether Kishor should be signed or not.
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