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Poll khol : Cong seeks but Sidhu is hiding, Sunny vs Sidhu?

Punjab Election 2017 Updated: Jan 11, 2017 12:49 IST
HT Team
HT Team
Hindustan Times
Navjot Sidhu

(Illustration by: Daljeet Kaur Sandhu/HT)

Cong seeks but Sidhu is hiding

Cricketer-turned-politician Navjot Singh Sidhu is playing hard to get. The 53-year-old, who quit the BJP in September and kept the Aam Aadmi Party hanging for weeks, was expected to join the Congress on Tuesday but was nowhere to be found.

Congress sources said Sidhu had indicated he would join on January 9 but the plan was changed. Him dumping the BJP for Congress was to be a photo-op but Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi was away on vacation.

Now it is being indicated that the former Rajya Sabha member would now join the Congress on the auspicious day of Lohri, January 13.

Sunny vs Sidhu?

There is a buzz in BJP circles that the saffron party is roping in Bollywood star Sunny Deol to contest assembly polls from Amritsar East constituency opposite Navjot Singh Sidhu. Sidhu’s wife Dr Navjot Kaur Sidhu, who was elected as an MLA from the constituency in the 2012 polls, had announced that her husband would contest from here on a Congress ticket. Dr Sidhu recently joined the Congress after leaving the BJP. If the Deol candidature does come through, it will be an interesting contest between ‘Thoko Guru’ and ‘Dhai Kilo Ka Haath’. But insiders in BJP say the Sidhu couple have left a bad taste, and a section in the saffron party is opposing the entry of another star.

The protest that wasn’t!

A protest planned by Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) in Bathinda on Monday “against the buses owned by deputy CM Sukhbir Singh Badal” could not take place, but the press release detailing it did reach the reporters. The 650-word press note, not only mentioned the names of those who led the protest but also what they said. A little later, however, the press team had the good grace of withdrawing it, while saying that press note of a future event had been released by mistake. Ahem.

Phoolka learning the ropes

AAP’s HS Phoolka contesting polls form Dakha constituency was in Chandigarh on Tuesday to meet the press. He confessed that he didn’t believe in making loud claims or projecting himself as larger than life. He was asked to react on Sangrur MP Bhagwant Mann’s projection of himself as the future Punjab CM. “I don’t know about Bhagwant, but I would never indulge in self-projection,” he announced. It seems a lawyer is learning ways of political finesse too!

Kissa kursi ka

Congress candidate Mohd. Sadiq sorely missed an opportunity to win hearts at a literary event ‘Gurdial Singh Diwas’ in Jaito on Monday, when he insisted on sitting on chairs reserved for guests. The sitting MLA from Bhadaur had to beat a hasty retreat when he was asked to vacate the reserved seats. The function had legendary poet Surjit Pattar on the dais as the chief guest, and a massive crowd of around 2,000 activists of Bharatiya Kisan Union (Ugraha group) in the audience. They were listening to the writers’ tributes to the late Gudial Singh, marking the departed legendary poet’s birth anniversary. Sadiq, who insisted on staying in the “guest enclosure”, instead of seeking a chair among the audience, had to finally leave the venue.

(Compiled by Aurangzeb Naqshbandi, Gurpreet Singh Nibber and Prabhjit Singh)

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