Hitting back at Congress leader Harish Rawat, former Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh on Thursday said the party has damaged its own interests by not trusting him and giving Punjab Congress into the hands of “an unstable person like Navjot Singh Sidhu”.
Amarinder Singh, who has indicated his willingness to ally with BJP in the forthcoming Punjab assembly polls, also hit out at Harish Rawat for questioning his secular credentials. In tweets made by Raveen Thukral, his media advisor, the former Chief Minister said Sidhu, Maharashtra Congress chief Nana Patole and Telangana Congress chief had come to Congress from BJP and Congress was in power in Maharashtra in alliance with Shiv Sena, an erstwhile ally of BJP.
Amarinder Singh had resigned last month as chief minister and stated that the party leadership had let him down. He said on Thursday that Sidhu, who had been made party chief in Punjab, “was only loyal to himself”.
“You’re apprehension I’ll damage Congress interests in Punjab. Fact is @harishrawatcmuk ji, the party has damaged its own interests by not trusting me and giving @INCPunjab into the hands of an unstable person like @sherryontopp who’s only loyal to himself’: @capt_amarinder,” Thukral said in a tweet, quoting Amarinder Singh.
The former chief minister said he had been fighting court cases against Badals for the last 10 years. “Today you’re accusing me of helping my rival @Akali_Dal_for 4 and a half years @harishrawatcmukji. Is that why you think I’ve been fighting court cases against them for the last 10 years? And why I’ve won @INCIndia all elections in Punjab since 2017? @capt_amarinder,” Thukral said.
“And what are you doing with @ShivsenaComms in Maharashtra? Or are you saying @harishrawatcmuk Ji that it’s ok to join forces with so-called communal parties as long as it suits @INCIndia purpose. What’s this if not sheer political opportunism?’: @capt_amarinder.
“Stop talking about secularism @harishrawatcmuk ji. Don’t forget @INCIndia took in @sherryontopp after he was with @BJP4India for 14 years. And where did Nana Patole and Revnath Reddy come from if not RSS? And Pargat Singh was with @Akali_Dal_for 4 years!’: @capt_amarinder,” he added.
Harish Rawat, who is a Congress general secretary and party’s Punjab in-charge, had said on Wednesday that the former Chief Minister has killed “secular Amarinder” within him. “If he (Amarinder Singh) wants to eat crow and go with BJP, he can. Who can stop him if he can’t stay with his old commitment to secularism? He was considered a symbol of “Sarvdharm Sambhav” and was connected to Congress’ traditions for a long time. If he wants to go, he should,” Rawat had said.
Amarinder Singh had announced on Tuesday that he will launch a new political party soon to fight the forthcoming assembly polls in the state and is hopeful of a tie-up with BJP if the ongoing protest by farmer unions against three farm laws is resolved “in farmers’ interest”. Assembly elections in Punjab are scheduled to be held next year.