Immediately after he tweeted his resignation letter to Rahul Gandhi, the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) and Punjab Ekta Party (PEP) made a simultaneous offer to Navjot Singh Sidhu to join their ranks.
Reacting to his resignation, Sunam MLA Aman Arora said that it was clear that Navjot Sidhu was being forced out of Cabinet and the Congress by CM Amarinder Singh after he had made comments about two feudal families being in cahoots in Punjab.
“It would have been better had Sidhu taken charge of the Power Ministry and worked to abrogate the unfair power purchase agreements entered into by the Badals. However, he is welcome to join AAP as we welcome all those who want to work for the benefit of the state,” he said.
Leader of Opposition, Harpal Cheema, also said that Sidhu was welcome to join AAP.
“We believe that all those persons who want to work for the state, the youth of the state, farmers and businessmen should join hands with us. So if Sidhu also wants to join us he is also welcome,” Cheema said.
Sidhu has also been invited to join hands with the ‘third front’ in Punjab with Punjab Ekta Party president, Sukhpal Khaira extending an invitation to him. “Sidhu paid the price for speaking the truth on friendly ties between Capt Amarinder and Badals,” said Khaira.
Reacting to Sidhu’s resignation, Khaira said Capt Amarinder Singh had targeted Navjot Sidhu because of his truthful outburst at Bathinda during the Lok Sabha polls exposing the “friendly match” between Capt and the Badal families.
Khaira said the entire reshuffle was merely an eyewash exercise aimed at isolating Sidhu to teach him a lesson for exposing the deep nexus between the two feudal families. He said ever since Capt has taken charge of Punjab congress he has never allowed any Jat Sikh leader to grow in stature fearing competition, he said only sycophants and leaders with money bags can survive in the coterie of Capt. Amarinder Singh.
“Sidhu was becoming popular day by day for his outspoken behaviour particularly he had gained respect amongst the masses on the Kartarpur Sahib corridor issue and his close ties with Pak PM Imran Khan. Congress high command has failed to protect a good honest leader from the onslaught by a feudal Capt Amarinder Singh,” he said.
Khaira urged Sidhu to quit congress and join third front forces to “liberate Punjab from the clutches of traditional corrupt, feudal and arrogant leaders like Badals and Capt Amarinder Singh”.
Meanwhile, BJP has reacted by stating that Amarinder should sack Sidhu from the Cabinet rather than waiting for his resignation.
Tarun Chugh, the national secretary of the party, said it was strange that Sidhu submitted his resignation to Rahul Gandhi who had already resigned as president of Congress.
He said instead of waiting for Sidhu’s resignation Chief Minister Amarinder Singh should dismiss Sidhu as he has made his intention clear not to continue in the government as a Cabinet Minister.
“It’s just a drama. Sidhu says he handed over his resignation to Rahul, who had already resigned as AICC chief and having resigned as the chief of party was not in a position to accept or reject his resignation,” Chugh said.
The BJP leader said this move of Sidhu was highly manipulative and political.
Chugh said Sidhu has today tweeted his resignation which shows that it was tendered on 10th of June, 2019 but leaves people confused.
“The question is whether it was handed over to Rahul on 10th of June or today i.e. on 14th of July. Further, it is also not clear why Sidhu chose to send his resignation to Rahul and not to Chief Minister Capt Amarinder Singh or Governor V P Singh Badnore,” he said.
He said it seems that Sidhu actually wanted to use his resignation as a political tool to create pressure on Congress high command and Chief Minister Amarinder Singh.
Chugh, who had earlier too raised the issue of Sidhu enjoying government facilities and perks but not delivering as a Cabinet Minister, said it was highly unethical of Sidhu to enjoy the perks even as he had resigned on June 10, 2019.