Much to the embarrassment of Hoshiarpur Congress nominee Mohinder Singh Kaypee, union minister of state for health and family welfare Santosh Chowdhary accused him of stabbing her in the back.
Addressing a press conference at her residence in Piplanwala here on Wednesday, Chowdhary, however, said she bore no grudge against party president Sonia Gandhi or vice-president Rahul Gandhi for not re nominating her from Hoshiarpur Lok Sabha constituency as they were "misled" by some of her opponents.
"I am a Sonia Gandhi fan and she has no parallel in the world. She had promised to protect my interests but then certain mischievous persons played their dirty game and succeeded in getting me eliminated from the race", she said.
Training her guns on Kaypee, the minister said that she believed him when he said he was not interested in Hoshiarpur seat but he betrayed her.
"We used to discuss the issue almost daily and he would always tell me that either he will contest from Jalandhar or not contest at all. A day before the party ticket was announced, I asked him to accompany me to the party leadership to clear our positions but he declined. Later he disclosed that he had mentioned Hoshiarpur as second preference. I just couldn't believe it. It was a sheer breach of trust", she added.
Chowdhary made it clear that she would neither leave the Congress nor contest as an Independent but expressed reservations about campaigning for Kaypee.
"Till date he has not approached me. He neither met me nor called me up. Perhaps he can't face me", she said, claiming that without her support he could not sail through the elections. "Mere bina uski beri paar nahin ho sakti (Without me, his boat cannot sail through)", she said.
Chowdhary has also written an open letter to her constituents, highlighting her contribution to the development of the constituency and explaining how she became a "victim of conspiracy".
"Although I have been denied the ticket, I'll continue to work for your (people's) welfare", she has written.
Kaypee, who was busy campaigning in some remote areas of his constituency, could not be contacted for his reaction on Chowdhary's outburst against him.