‘Jittega Punjab’ rally: Navjot Sidhu to hold rally in Mehraj today, local Congress unit feigns ignorance - Hindustan Times
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‘Jittega Punjab’ rally: Navjot Sidhu to hold rally in Mehraj today, local Congress unit feigns ignorance

ByVishal Joshi, Bathinda
Dec 17, 2023 06:00 AM IST

Navjot Sidhu, who is holding a ‘Jittega Punjab’ rally on Sunday has roped in his old associate Harvinder Laddi, who had unsuccessfully the last assembly elections from Bathinda (rural) segment, to help him garner support for the political event.

The factionalism within the Punjab Congress was writ large as former state unit chief Navjot Sidhu reached Bathinda on Saturday, unaccompanied by any official of the state or district unit, for a rally to at Mehraj village on Sunday.

Former Punjab Congress leader Navjot Sidhu reached Bathinda on Saturday, unaccompanied by any official of the state or district unit, for a rally to at Mehraj village on Sunday. (HT File)
Former Punjab Congress leader Navjot Sidhu reached Bathinda on Saturday, unaccompanied by any official of the state or district unit, for a rally to at Mehraj village on Sunday. (HT File)

Sidhu, who is holding a ‘Jittega Punjab’ rally on Sunday has roped in his old associate Harvinder Laddi, who had unsuccessfully the last assembly elections from Bathinda (rural) segment, to help him garner support for the political event.

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The publicity material of Sidhu’s rally also underscores the equations within the party – while it prominently displays the pictures of national party president Mallikarjun Kharge, Wayanad MP Rahul Gandhi and Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, there are no photos of state Congress president Amarinder Singh Raja Warring.

Bathinda district Congress president Rajan Garg said on Saturday that no leader from the district unit will attend the Mehraj rally as there is no communication from the Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee (PPCC) about any such event.

“I have not received any message from Sidhu either. I am out of India but I have confirmed that there is no communication from the party about any programme at Mehraj on Sunday so there is no point asking the party cadre to work for the said event,” said Garg.

Addressing a press conference, Sidhu said all should join the rally but he has personally not called anyone to the event. The former PPCC chief said he would hold more rallies in Punjab, if invited.

“I don’t hold any official position in the party and only the state president has the authority to ask the Congress leaders to attend a rally,” he said.

Mehraj is the ancestral place of the former Congress chief minister Capt Amarinder Singh and it is the part of Rampura Phul assembly segment.

In his media interaction, Sidhu targeted chief minister Bhagwant Mann and claimed that the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) failed on various governance fronts.

He charged the AAP leadership of adopting tactics to divert public attention from the core issues of Punjab but was quick to add that he was a strong votary of the Congress forming a political pact with the AAP “to protect democratic values at the national level”.

Sidhu said he sticks to his stand of not contesting the Parliamentary elections as he is committed to state politics.

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