Punjab cabinet minister Adaish Partap Kairon’s cousin Raghuinder Singh Kairon joined Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) along with 10 others — including Punjab Congress chief Capt Amarinder Singh’s aide Sharanjeet Singh Jogipur — in Patiala on Wednesday.
Raghuinder Singh, 43, belongs to the extended Kairon family. His great grandfather, Jaswant Singh Kairon was the younger brother of Partap Singh Kairon, the first chief minister of Punjab.
Raghuinder’ father Jasinder Singh and Adaish’s father Surinder Singh Kairon were brought up together in Kairon village.
Raghuinder’s aunt Gurbinder Kaur Brar was married to former Punjab CM Harcharan Singh Brar.
Settled in Patiala, Raghuinder, a local businessman, said, “I am aware that my extended family has remained strongly connected with both Akali Dal and Congress but I feel that a lot of degeneration has seeped inside both these mainstream parties. That’s the reason why I have decided to join the AAP, which, I strongly feel, can bail the state out of many lingering problems.”
He said he had worked with the AAP local unit as backroom manager for over a year before officially joining the party.
“The AAP at least has a democratic system. Where’s the democracy in other parties?...the SAD has become a one-man party. Even Adesh is finding it difficult to get along with Sukhbir Singh Badal,” claimed Raghuinder.
Former district Youth Congress president Sharanjit Singh Jogipur also joined the AAP. Considered close to Amarinder, Jogipur’s arrival in the AAP was announced in September. Jogipur has a strong hold in Ghanaur and his inclusion in the Aam Aadmi Party can alter the political scenario of the assembly segment where Preneet Kaur had trailed from the AAP in the last Lok Sabha elections.
Others who joined the AAP included Varinder Kumar, who is the son-in-law of Makhan Lalka, SAD’s halqa in-charge from Nabha, Congress’ block samiti member Jairnal Singh and BJP’s municipal council member Bibi Sujata.
‘Our CM face won’t be a parachute candidate’
Patiala: AAP leader and co-convener for Punjab affairs Durgesh Pathak said the party’s chief minister face for 2017 state polls won’t be a ‘parachute candidate.’
In an interview with HT here, Pathak dismissed the reports that BJP leader Navjot Singh Sidhu is being fielded as AAP’s CM face. “It’s a mere media speculation and had no substance,” he added.
“We don’t want to end up like the BJP in Delhi where the party desperately fielded Kiran Bedi to win polls and was left red-faced,” he added.
“Our CM face will be someone chosen from among us, he added.
Durgesh, who is playing a pivotal role in setting up party’s structure in Punjab, said the AAP was ready to take on its rivals.
“From next month, we will start a series of big rallies to take on both mainstream parties. Also, our house-to-house campaign to connect with people will kick off,” he added.