Top Congress leaders, including four sitting MLAs, two former legislators and many other party leaders, were conspicuous by their absence when sitting Congress MP from Sangrur, Vijay Inder Singla filed his nomination papers for the Lok Sabha elections amid a show of strength of workers on Friday.
MLAs Kewal Singh Dhillon ( Bar nala), Arvind Khanna ( Dhuri ) , Harchand Kaur (Mehal Kalan) and Mohd Sadiq (Bhadaur) and former MLA Razia Sultana (Malerkotla) were conspicuous by their absence. A loyalist of former chief minster Captain Amarinder Singh, former MLA Surjit Dhiman, who had recently withdrawn the threat to contest as independent against Singla, was also absent.
The absence of five leaders from total nine assembly segments under the Sangrur Lok Sabha seat overshadowed the show of strength put up by Singla and his men.
All these leaders are reportedly having personal grudges against Singla, whom they have either accused of being high headed or failing to respect the seniority in the party. Kewal Dhillon was one of the contenders for the Sangrur ticket.
Singla faces a tough competition from Akali heavyweight Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa and AAP's Bhagwant Mann. However, ex-CM and Lehragaga MLA Rajinder Kaur Bhattal, district president Roop Kaur, former MLAs Surinder Pal Singh Sibia and Dhanwant Singh Dhuri, former minister Jasbir Singh Sangrur and Baldev Singh Mann addressed the gathering in support of Singla.