In what could be taken as a sign of an evolving political scenario within the state Congress, former chief minister and member of Parliament from Amritsar Captain Amarinder Singh’s attempts to reconnect with the masses in the area is getting support from local leaders in Bathinda, some of whom have been known to be opposed to Amarinder since long.
For Amarinder’s rally at Rampura Phul, Congress leaders from the area, who once remained his bête noire in the party, are leaving no stone unturned to appease him or curry favour.
Tuesday’s rally, organised by vice-president of the Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee Gurpreet Singh Kangar, has had leaders from across Bathinda district gearing up mark their presence, with most leaders planning to bring a large number of supporters.
However, Kangar, a two-time former MLA from the Rampura Phul assembly segment, has clarified that the rally is meant to be a show of strength from his constituency only.
Former member of legislative assembly (MLA) Harminder Singh Jassi, who switched loyalties from PPCC president Partap Singh Bajwa to Amarinder a few months ago, also plans to take full advantage of the rally to ‘exhibit’ his loyalty to Amarinder by attending the rally along with other key workers from Bathinda constituency.
After losing in the Talwandi Sabo bypoll last year, Jassi started maintaining distance from Bajwa while showing solidarity with Amarinder.
Such were differences between Amarinder and Jassi that the formers didn’t spare time to campaign for the latter during the bypoll.
However, post-elections, Jassi was seen attending several functions organised by Amarinder. “Yes, I am going to attend the rally along with my 1,300 supporters from Bathinda and Talwandi Sabo,” said Jassi.
“We are not going to take the credit of the rally since it will be a Kangar’s show. But we have some committed workers, who will attend the rally. We have extended full support to Kangar to make the rally in his constituency a success,” he said.
Kangar said more than 10,000 people were expected to attend the function. “We have invited all MLAs and senior Congress leaders. We have not asked any MLA or leader to bring workers,” Kangar said.