CHANDIGARH: Aam Aadmi Party's Punjab unit chief Bhagwant Mann on Sunday said if Congress leader Navjot Singh Sidhu decides to join the AAP, he would be the first to welcome him.
Amid speculation that the AAP is trying to woo Sidhu ahead of the 2022 Punjab Assembly polls, Mann said he has made the offer to the cricketer-turned-politician to join the party.
He, however, clarified that he had not held any talks in this regard with Sidhu.
"I have made the offer, but there have been no talks. Navjot Sidhu is a damn honest person; I was his huge fan during his cricketing days and used to switch off the TV whenever he got out. I am still his fan and will remain so in the future too. If he joins our party, I will be the first to welcome him," said Mann.
The Sangrur MP said the doors of the party were open to all those who work for the welfare of the state without any vested interest.
Addressing a press conference here, Mann, however, evaded a direct reply when specifically asked if his party had approached Sidhu to join the outfit.
Instead, he quipped, "Unemployment has been on the rise, prices have risen " When another reporter asked if Sidhu could be offered the chief ministerial post incase he joins the AAP, Mann again evaded the reply and said, "Farmers suicides have increased, water table has gone down.
You (media) should ask questions about Punjab's issues.
" "Sidhu, Bhagwant Mann, these are not Punjab's issues.
Punjab's issues are farmers suicides, our water table going down, issues pertaining to our youth, our economy, these are the issues and you should ask me about this," he added.
The Congress MLA from Amritsar had been incommunicado ever since he resigned from the state cabinet last year.
Sidhu, who had been at loggerheads with Chief Minister Amarinder Singh, was stripped off key portfolios in the cabinet reshuffle in June last year.
However, a few days ago, Sidhu met Congress president Sonia Gandhi and party leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra.
In a statement later, Sidhu said he was called by the "party high command" to Delhi and that he apprised the two senior leaders of a road map for the "revival" of the Congress-ruled state "to its pristine glory".