Former Punjab chief minister Capt Amarinder Singh who got elected as MP from Amritsar, defeating BJP stalwart Arun Jaitley, has tendered his resignation as Patiala Urban MLA.
Amarinder got elected from the assembly constituency for three consecutive terms — 2002, 2007 and 2012. Vidhan Sabha secretary Ved Parkash told HT that they received the resignation on Tuesday and it was sent to speaker Charanjeet Singh Atwal.
Sources in the Vidhan Sabha said the resignation would be accepted in a fortnight. The move has led to the speculation as to who would be the Congress candidate for the byelection after the seat is rendered vacant.
According to rules, such a constituency goes to the byelection within six months. Sources close to Amarinder’s family said it could be his son Raninder Singh who unsuccessfully contested the 2012 assembly poll from Samana.
There are also rumours that Amarinder’s wife Preneet Kaur, who lost the recent parliamentary polls from Patiala, may also contest the election.
In case Preneet contests and wins, it would be a role reversal as Amarinder moves on to national politics and Preneet would be active in state politics. Though Preneet said no decision had been taken as of now.
Preneet is a former minister of state for external affairs and was MP from Patiala for three consecutive terms — 1999, 2004 and 2009 before being defeated by Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) candidate Dr Dharamvira Gandhi in the recent elections.
Meanwhile, AAP is also gearing up to field a candidate for the bypoll. “There has been no formal discussion on the issue at the party level, but we are clear that we will field a candidate,” state AAP convenor Sumel Singh Sidhu said.