Amid fireworks within Punjab Congress continuing with Rajya Sabha MP Partap Singh Bajwa hitting out at Punjab CM Amarinder Singh and PPCC president Sunil Jakhar on Friday, party general secretary in-charge Asha Kumari threw her weight behind the CM and said he was the “tallest and charismatic leader” the Punjab Congress had.
On whether Bajwa’s rebellion had anything to do with Amarinder announcing he would run for 2022 elections, she said, “If we have to go to 2022 elections, who do we have other than Captain? Do we have any other face?” she asked adding that Bajwa is “intelligent, a nice and likeable person, is politically savvy and has age and seniority on his side. He has future in the party. He is 15 years younger than Captain. Jakhar has been saying he would not contest any election in future.”
She said that she considered Bajwa to be a very “fair” leader. “What happened in Jyotiraditya Scindia in Madhya Pradesh and Sachin Pilot in Rajasthan is a different story. Partap is certainly a different person. He is fair, he can be rash but not irrational.”
About the ongoing public spat, Kumari said she was unable to do anything as Bajwa was a Rajya Sabha MP and only disciplinary committee could take action. “We have a constitution of the party. We cannot take any action. The complaint has to be sent to the party president by PPCC and then it will be forwarded to the disciplinary committee.’
“I can only appeal to the party leaders to not speak in public and if they have any issues, take it up at the party platform. Jakhar had to write to AICC interim president Sonia Gandhi. I need to check whether he has written it or not,” Kumari said while speaking to The Indian Express, a day after she held a meeting with Amarinder and Jakhar in Chandigarh.
She said she will brief Sonia Gandhi.
She said she could not fathom what the provocation was for Bajwa and his Rajya Sabha MP colleague Shamsher Singh Dullo, “Dullo’s son contested Lok Sabha election against Congress party candidate, Dr Amar Singh. When Rahul Gandhi came for Dr Amar Singh’s rally at Khanna, Dullo did not attend it.”
On Jakhar alleging Bajwa’s complicity with BJP, Kumari said, “Jakhar is not saying anything out of his hat. He quoted the newspapers reports.”
Bajwa kept the heat on against Amarinder when he commented on his public appearance in Tarn Taran by saying, “He was sleeping like Kumbhakarna. I have shaken him out of his sleep. That is how he has come out of his forest house (Amarinder’s farm house in Parol village). Had I not spoken up, he would not have come out.”
He further said he would not have gone to the Governor, “But the CM has been saying he does not read my letters. If the CM of my party would not listen to a colleague, where would I go? Obviously, I would have to knock at a door…121 people lost their lives. Where is the government? …Our party leaders laid down lives during terrorism for people of the state. If we have to give up life to Covid for the sake of people, then let be it. If he cannot come out because of Covid, he should get aside. There are people who can deliver better than him.”
Dullo also said they have sought an appointment with Sonia Gandhi, “If she calls us and asks us to resign, I will resign.”
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