AMID the ongoing tussle between Charanjit Singh Channi and Navjot Singh Sidhu, the Punjab chief minister has now forayed into the state Congress president’s domain by calling a meeting of block presidents of the party to listen to their grievances and chalk out the strategy ahead of 2022 Assembly elections.
Channi had called region-wise meetings of the block presidents from Malwa, Doaba and Majha regions. After meeting the block presidents from Malwa on Monday, Channi held a meeting of the leaders from Doaba and Majha Tuesday even as Sidhu was having meetings with party councillors and industrialists in Ludhiana.
AICC secretary in-charge for Punjab Harish Chaudhary has been a part of the meetings that took place at the CM’s residence. Sidhu was conspicuous by his absence in both the meetings.
Sources close to Sidhu said he was not invited. “Had he been invited, he would have gone,” a source close to him said. He added that it is only fair for the CM and in-charge to hold meetings of the Congress office bearers.
It is learnt that the block presidents raised the issue of Sidhu attacking the party government. “A few asked that Sidhu should be asked not to criticise the government as it showed the Congress in poor light,” a leader said.
Sidhu has been openly taking on the party government. Recently he had threatened to go on fast unto death if the STF report on drugs issue was not made public. He has also been criticising the promises made by Channi saying that while the coffers are empty, the CM is doling out sops.
He had openly waged a war against former Advocate General APS Deol and the government had to replace him with Sidhu’s choice in DS Patwalia.
As the power tussle between Sidhu and Channi continues, the tension between them becomes palpable often.
In a recent rally, Sidhu’s speech was not broadcast live on social media handles of Punjab government.
Also, in a rally, Channi spoke before Sidhu and left before the state Congress chief could start his speech. Usually, the CM is the one to end the rallies with his speech.
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