Punjab Congress MLA Sukhbinder Singh Sarkaria's revolt against state party chief Partap Singh Bajwa and the latter's controversial move to organise a dharna in New Delhi has triggered a cyber war between the supporters of Bajwa and his predecessor, Capt Amarinder Singh.
The former chief minister's supporters have started a campaign, 'Captain Leyao, Punjab Bachao' (Bring back Captain, save Punjab) on social networking site Facebook, while the Bajwa camp is busy carrying out a counter-attack.
The pro-Amarinder campaign was launched on Monday afternoon by Inderpal Singh Dhumma, a Youth Congress activist from Ludhiana. Dhumma, who claims to be managing the office page of the Punjab Youth Congress on Facebook, said, "We are not saying that our state party chief (Bajwa) has failed. Our point is that if Maharaja saab (Amarinder) had been the state Congress president this time, the SAD-BJP combine would have been cornered. The common party worker wants that the charge should be in the Captain's hands."
A Hindustan Times report ('Bajwa takes farmers for a ride, no meeting with Sonia', September 30) has been posted online to highlight how Bajwa took along party workers and farmers from Punjab to Delhi on the pretext of a meeting with Congress president Sonia Gandhi, but instead staged a protest against BJP's prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi.
Sikander Kahlon, a Bajwa supporter, is answering questions posed by pro-Captain workers, including the party's defeat and withdrawal of candidates in block samiti and zila parishad elections. The party's loss in the 2007 and 2012 assembly polls, besides the Moga byelection, and the defection of senior party leaders to the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD), are also hot topics of debate.
Meanwhile, when asked about Bajwa holding a dharna in Delhi without taking senior leaders from the state into confidence, former chief minister Rajinder Kaur Bhattal and former member of Parliament Jagmeet Brar avoided comment.
"I was not aware of any such dharna. Nobody informed me. I will not comment," said Brar.
Sikander Kahlon: Mr Bajwa is working very hard. Captain saab n Jakhar need to support him and take on govt jointly.
Lakhwinder Dhillon: Captain saab ne Congress khatam karti, hun eh party ton dur rehan tan changa hai.
Damanjit Singh Mohie: Don't want to argue, everybody has their own choice. According to me Maharaja Saab is a real leader, gem of a person, learned, down to earth, classy, man of his words, a true son of the soil