Khadoor Sahib seems to be turning into a battlefield for two Congress big shots, Capt Amarinder Singh and Partap Singh Bajwa, as their loyalists are vying to get the ticket for the upcoming bypolls in the assembly segment.
With the polls expected to be held in the next two months, Bajwa’s aide and Congress leader Bhupinder Singh Bittu is out mobilising support to counter his party colleague Ramanjit Singh Sikki, who is a known Amarinder loyalist.
The Khadoor Sahib seat fell vacant after Sikki, a former MLA, quit in protest against sacrilege of the Guru Granth Sahib at Baath village in the constituency.
Reports, however, suggest that the Congress may again allot the bypoll ticket to Sikki, considering that his resignation had only increased his stature in Khadoor Sahib, a Sikh-majority area. Also, things seem to be in Sikki’s favour as Amarinder was recently appointed the state Congress president.
All this has, however, angered former Congress chief Bajwa’s loyalist Bittu, who is openly revolting. The former chairman of Khadoor Sahib market committee has started mobilising party workers in support of his candidature. On Saturday, he also conducted an impressive public meeting at a gurdwara and condemned Sikki’s announcement that he would again contest the polls.
During a public meeting on Friday, Sikki had said he would be contesting only because the “sangat wants me to do so”. “Sikki’s move of resigning from the MLA’s post in protest against the sacrilege was appreciable, but exploiting the issue for political ends is condemnable,” Bittu told the gathering.
Later talking to the HT, Bittu also slammed Sikki for his “absence” from the field since the last assembly election. “We have been working in this segment for the last four years to keep the party alive, but Sikki fled after winning with big margin,” he said.
Bittu alleged that Sikki had quit the MLA’s post only to hide his lack of activity in the area. “He has no moral right to lay claim on the seat again,” Bittu said.