Chief minister Capt Amarinder Singh and former minister Navjot Singh Sidhu in Chandigarh in March. The two have been at loggerheads for the past few months, with the Amritsar East MLA attacking the CM over the desecration cases. (HT file photo/HT)
Chief minister Capt Amarinder Singh and former minister Navjot Singh Sidhu in Chandigarh in March. The two have been at loggerheads for the past few months, with the Amritsar East MLA attacking the CM over the desecration cases. (HT file photo/HT)

Punjab CM to attend Sidhu’s coronation tomorrow

Capt Amarinder Singh invites all state Congress MLAs, MPs and senior party functionaries for tea before installation ceremony of Navjot Singh Sidhu and four working presidents
UPDATED ON JUL 22, 2021 05:47 PM IST

Punjab chief minister Capt Amarinder Singh will attend coronation ceremony of his bête noire Navjot Singh Sidhu in Chandigarh on Friday morning.

“Capt Amarinder Singh has invited all Punjab Congress MLAs, MPs and senior party functionaries at Punjab Bhawan for tea at 10am on Friday. They will all then go to Punjab Congress Bhawan together from there for the installation of the new Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee team,” the chief minister’s media adviser, Raveen Thukral, tweeted on Thursday evening.

Also read: Busy settling scores with Capt, Sidhu’s forgotten Punjab: AAP

Sidhu and the four working presidents Kuljit Singh Nagra, Sangat Singh Gilzian, Pawan Goel and Sukhwinder Singh Danny will formally charge at the ceremony at Punjab Congress Bhawan at 11am on Friday.

Harish Rawat, the All India Congress Committee (AICC) general secretary in-charge of Punjab affairs, will attend as the representative of the party’s high command.

Nagra, Gilzian call on Amarinder with invite

Nagra said Gilzian and he extended a formal invite on behalf of Sidhu and all party MLAs to the chief minister for the installation ceremony. “The 30-minute meeting was very cordial and the CM promptly accepted the invitation. It’s a party function and all are attending,” Nagra said.

Sidhu and Capt Amarinder Singh have been at loggerheads for the past few months, with the Amritsar East MLA attacking the CM over the desecration cases.

The chief minister also opposed his appointment as the state Congress chief and had said he won’t meet Sidhu until the cricketer-turned-politician apologises for his “derogatory” tweets against him.

Hectic behind-the-scenes political activity

Before Sidhu starts his new innings as state party chief, the Congress high command didn’t want to take any chances. Senior leaders from Delhi spent the entire Thursday in hectic behind-the-scenes political activity, calling up state cabinet ministers and asking them to attend Friday’s function.

Four cabinet ministers, Tript Rajinder Singh Bajwa, Sukhjinder Singh Randhawa, Sukhbinder Singh Sarkaria and Charanjit Singh Channi, have already backed Sidhu. Other ministers also said that they will attend the event as it is a Congress function.

Some party leaders met senior minister Brahm Mohindra, persuading him to attend the event. Mohindra was the lone member of Captain Amarinder Singh’s cabinet to have issued a statement, saying Sidhu should publicly apologise to the CM for his remarks against him.

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