HindustanTimes Sun,28 Dec 2014

Former cricketer Bedi prepares to stump Jaitley

Vishal Rambani, Hindustan Times  Patiala, April 17, 2014
First Published: 07:27 IST(17/4/2014) | Last Updated: 20:04 IST(17/4/2014)

Batsmen gone, bowlers have come into the attack to bother Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) candidate Arun Jaitley. Already outgoing MP and former India opener Navjot Singh Sidhu is not batting for Jaitley in the Amritsar Lok Sabha contest but exskipper Bishan Singh Bedi is all set to fire his googlies at the former Delhi and District Cricket Association (DDCA) president, hoping to expose chinks in his defence.

Jaitley would never have expected it, but Bedi, who lost to him in battle for the top DDCA seat, now has brought the Delhi cricket war to Amritsar, Jaitley’s new poll turf.

The veteran wicket-taker threatens to expose the cricket administrator who also served as vice-president on the sport’s governing board in India.

Bedi, 68, and a few other cricketers who opposed Jaitley in the DDCA elections will campaign for Captain Amarinder Singh in poll constituency Amritsar and for his wife at the exCM’s home ground, Patiala.

The cricket legend is born and brought up in Amritsar, while Jaitley for long served as DDCA president until opting out of the cricketbody elections last year to give more time to politics.

“I am coming to Amritsar to expose Jaitley. The voters should know about his misdeeds as head of the DDCA. We’ll take the field from Friday onwards,” said the left arm leg break bowler, also alleging that the Board of Control for Cricket in India had failed to promote Amritsar as international venue.

He also feels sorry that the BJP denied ticket to a cricketer, Navjot Singh Sidhu. Cricketer-turnedpolitician Sidhu has declined to join the election campaign of Jaitley, saying that chief minister Parkash Singh Badal and the Punjab BJP leadership wanted to keep him out of Amritsar.

“The Amritsar tour is finalised,” said Bedi, “and we’ll also join (former Olympic shooter and member of the royal family) Raja Randhir Singh at Patiala to campaign for (Amarinder’s wife) Preneet Kaur.”

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