Punjab’s Minister for Local Bodies and Tourism Navjot Singh Sidhu has defended the appointment of his son Karan Singh as assistant advocate general, saying it was based on merit with which he had nothing to do. Sidhu, who has in the past criticised political opponents and rivals for nepotism, said Friday he had made no demands from the government.
While Karan Singh’s appointment came on Thursday, Sidhu’s wife Navjot Kaur Sidhu was appointed the chairperson of Punjab Warehousing Corporation last month, but she has yet to take office. “We have never asked for anything. I have never asked for any favour or made any sifarish (recommendation),” Sidhu told The Indian Express.
The minister said his son had received a masters degree in law from the Benjamin N Cardozo School of Law in New York after doing his LLB from Amity University. “For over last one year, he had been working with the Punjab Advocate General’s office without charging any money,” Sidhu said. “He is a professional who earlier worked in Delhi. When I came here, he also came here to live with family in Punjab. He wanted to connect with the roots. I cannot tell him to run away if he wants to contribute in a certain way.”
Sidhu’s daughter Rabia Sidhu has done a three-year degree course in interior designing from London. She is set to pursue masters in interior designing from Milan, Sidhu said. “The best we could have done was to educate our children. And now, if they became professionals and are chosen on merit, what is wrong in that.”
Sidhu’s wife Navjot Kaur Sidhu, who has not yet joined as chairperson of Punjab State Warehousing Corporation, is likely to join next week.
Talking to The Indian Express on Thursday before her son’s appointment was announced, Navjot Kaur Sidhu said she was studying the subject of “warehousing” before taking up the post, and was “70 per cent” ready to join, despite her initial reluctance.
“I came from medical background and this was new subject for me. So, initially I had some reservations. I did not want to sit on a chair and do nothing. But, after studying it, I will join next week,” she said.
Her husband said the Congress high command had made a promise to his wife in the run-up to 2017 elections. “Had we been after something, she would have contested Amritsar parliamentary polls. She was offered the seat, but she refused. She held fort for me in Amritsar in Vidhan Sabha elections and campaigned for me when I campaigned for the party in other parts of the State,” said Sidhu.