Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee (PPCC) president Capt Amarinder Singh on Saturday dismissed the fourth front floated by Navjot Singh Sidhu as inconsequential, alleging it seems to be propped up by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).
“It is like a tonga party of four people with two sitting in the front and two in the rear. It will hardly have any impact (on the assembly elections),” Capt told mediapersons. While asserting four people do not make a political party as it required “much more than that”, the Congress chief said they were welcome to form it as it was their democratic right.
Hitting out at Sidhu, who has formed the Awaaz-e-Punjab along with MLAs Pargat Singh and Bains brothers, Capt said: “Sidhu has also been convicted in a criminal case and he will face problem due to this.” Alleging the former BJP MP was facing an enforcement directorate notice for money laundering as well, the PPCC chief questioned: “Are people accused of money laundering honest?”
‘AAP, Akalis fighting for second spot’
On the Aam Aadmi Party’s claim that its competition was with the Akali Dal and not the Congress, Capt said: “Of course the two parties are competing for the second spot as we are far ahead of them,” adding the AAP will not even win even a single seat.
On Bhagwant Mann’s absence from political arena, the former chief minister said: “I have no idea about his intentions and whereabouts. But there is a strong sense of introspection among Punjabi AAP leaders, who are sons of the soil, about being ruled over and exploited and they are standing up against it. May be Bhagwant Mann is also feeling the same way.”
‘SC welfare benefits for Christians’
Addressing the Christian congregation ‘Masih Adhikaar Sammelan’, Amarinder said once the Congress comes to power in Punjab, all welfare schemes announced for Dalits and the downtrodden, such as the Shagun scheme and free power, will also be extended to Christian community. Capt promised to include each and every demand made by the community in its memorandum submitted to him in the election manifesto. He said the Congress government will also pass a law to enable nomination of a member of the community to the Vidhan Sabha on the pattern of Chhattisgarh.
‘Bolaria is in touch with us’
Laying to rest speculation over suspended Akali legislator Inderbir Singh Bolaria joining the Congress, Amarinder said: “Yes, Bolaria is in touch with the All India Congress Committee, and I am hopeful we will get him.” Bolaria who is the MLA from Amritsar south was suspended after he raised a banner of revolt against the SAD over a solid waste management plant proposed in his constituency.