In politics, there are only permanent interests. No wonder then that the deputy leader of the Congress in the Lok Sabha Captain Amarinder Singh and his old-time detractors, Rajinder Kaur Bhattal and Shamsher Singh Dullo ---- have decided to bury the hatchet for fighting a common enemy ---- Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee (PPCC) chief Partap Singh Bajwa.
Unwilling to don the state president's hat himself, two-and-half years before Punjab is slated to go to polls, the erstwhile Patiala royal is now playing kingmaker and has thrown the bait to his “senior colleagues”.
After indulging in ‘lunch diplomacy’ with sitting and former MLAs, soon after his return from the UK during celebratory events to mark wife Preneet Kaur’s victory in the Patiala bypoll, Amarinder has also been hobnobbing with former state Congress chiefs to create consensus on ousting Bajwa.
Anyone, he says, would be better than Bajwa. “On my return from the UK, I met Congress president Sonia Gandhi and vice-president Rahul Gandhi and told them there is no way I can work with Bajwa. He has been a major disaster as the state president and has lost his credibility as not a single person in the party is happy with him. He is changing elected representatives of district and block committees, when there is a strict law in the party that only nominated members can be changed. The party workers are demoralised and their morale has to be rebuilt,” Amarinder said while talking to HT.
On whether he is willing to take the responsibility, the captain said he has never said no to any job given by the Congress president but there are many other ‘capable’ leaders who can replace Bajwa.
On whether Bhattal could be one, he said, “She could be one. There are several others such as Lal Singh and Shamsher Singh Dullo. First, I will take my senior colleagues into confidence. There has to be a consensus on this,” he said.
‘Bajwa takes cues from Badal’
Amarinder claims that Bajwa takes his inspiration from Punjab CM Parkash Singh Badal. “Badal and Bajwa are both of the same type unreliable. They never speak the truth. It seems Bajwa takes his cues from Badal. Both say something and do something else,” Amarinder said.