CHANDIGARH: Cricketer-turned-Politician Navjot Singh Sidhu who had been on loggerheads with the Punjab Chief Minister Capt Amarinder is formally out of the state cabinet, as both CM Amarinder and Punjab Governor VPS Badnore accepted his one-line resignation thus putting to end all the speculations.
Within hours of the resignation letter being forwarded to him by the Chief Minister, the Governor conveyed his acceptance of the same. The Power portfolio will, for the time being, remain with the Chief Minister.
Earlier in the day Amarinder has accepted Sidhu’s resignation and forwarded the same to the Governor. An official said Amarinder, who had been indisposed for the last two days, since arrival from Delhi, saw the resignation letter this morning. He had then sent the same to Governor VPS Badnore, for formal acceptance.
Amarinder had earlier, in Delhi, said he would see the resignation letter, which was received at his Chandigarh residence in his absence, and take a decision. The letter, however, was just a single sentence tendering Sidhu’s resignation, with no explanation or elaboration.
Sidhu had reportedly sent his resignation on June 10 to Congress president Rahul Gandhi and tweeted the same more than a month later. Thereafter he had tweeted that he would formally send his papers to the Chief Minister, in whose cabinet he had been allocated the Power Ministry as part of a reshuffle post
the Lok Sabha elections. He finally sent his resignation to Amarinder’s official residence while the latter was in Delhi.
It may be recalled that Sidhu had refused to take over his new portfolio, which the Chief Minister himself has been monitoring during the ongoing crucial paddy season, with a harsh summer sending the power demand in the state to unprecedented levels.
Sidhu had been on loggerheads with Amarinder since he had joined the congress just before the 2017 assembly elections. The congress leadership had intervened so that there could be truce between bot the leaders but it did not work out.
When last month Sidhu was divested of the local bodies portfolio and given power since then he had not joined his new ministry and just wanted back his old
department. But recently CM has said if Sidhu does not want his nob there is nothing he could do about it.
At a rally in Bathinda just before the state went to polls in these parliamentary elections Sidhu was embroiled in a controversy over his jibe at Amarinder of `friendly match’ with akalis, to which Amarinder criticised Sidhu for damaging the Congress with his ill-timed comments against him and the party leadership in the state and went on to say that perhaps he (Sidhu) is ambitious and wants to be chief minister.
A few days earlier Sidhu had also accused the Chief Minister of being responsible for denial of ticket to his wife, Navjot Kaur from Chandigarh. To which Amarinder had then said he was harming the party with such irresponsible actions and he had no role in getting her ticket denied. Amarinder also then said that she was asked to contest from Amritsar or Bathinda but she refused.