Ahead of Congress General Secretary Harish Rawat’s visit to Punjab to de-escalate tension between the two factions, the Navjot Singh Sidhu’s camp has opened a front against Rawat and challenged his statement on Amarinder.

In a statement, Punjab Congress General Secretary Pargat Singh had posed a challenge that Harish Rawat should tell when it was decided that Punjab elections will be fought under the leadership of Chief Minister Amarinder Singh.

“Election will be fought under the leadership of Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi,” Pargat Singh said.

Harish Rawat had met Rahul Gandhi on Saturday and briefed him about the situation there which has arisen after the statement of Navjot Singh Sidhu.

Rawat is scheduled to visit Punjab in a day or two and will talk to Chief Minister Amarinder Singh and state president Navjot Singh Sidhu and sort out the issues arising out of the differences between the two leaders.

Rawat had on Friday met interim President Sonia Gandhi and apprised her of the situation in the state.

“Punjab situation is under control… I have apprised her about the situation in the state,” he told reporters after the meeting.

Sidhu speaking at a party function in Amritsar last week had said, “If he is allowed to work according to his own policy of hope and faith, he will ensure the Congress rule in the state for 20 years.

“But if you won’t let me take decisions, eint naal eint bi kharkaonga (it will be disastrous for the party). There’s no point in becoming a showpiece,” Sidhu had said without mincing words.

Speaking about the Punjab model, Sidhu said, “Punjab model means people make policies for trade, industry and power. Giving power back to the people.”

The meeting happened in wake of some “rebel” MLAs seeking time from Sonia Gandhi to press for the removal of Chief Minister Amarinder Singh.

Rawat has been facing a tough task to balance both sides in Punjab as Sidhu and Amarinder Singh are at loggerheads.

Meanwhile, Amarinder Singh’s confidante and Cabinet minister Rana Gurmit Singh Sodhi hosted a dinner at his residence on Thursday.

A total of 58 MLAs and eight MPs attended the dinner and expressed confidence that the party would win the 2022 polls under the leadership of Amarinder Singh. “The journey has started today,” Sodhi informed in a tweet.

–IANS

miz/dpb

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