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Congress on the back foot due to Harish Rawat’s statement, had to clarify about the face in Punjab elections

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To quell the discord in Punjab Congress, the party has made a major reshuffle, making Charanjit Singh Channi as the new Chief Minister. However, despite this, an alleged statement by Congress’ Punjab in-charge Harish Rawat created a ruckus in the party. Rawat had given a statement that Sidhu would be the face for the next elections in the state. Former state president Sunil Jakhar had openly expressed displeasure over this statement. However, seeing the controversy escalating, the party came on the back foot and made it clear that Charanjit Singh Channi would be the chief minister and Navjot Singh Sidhu as the state Congress Committee president in the next assembly elections in the state.

Party’s chief spokesperson Randeep Surjewala also expressed the hope that the new government would continue to receive the blessings of former chief minister Amarinder Singh. On Rawat’s alleged statement, Surjewala told reporters, “I have spoken to Harish Rawat ji. Many friends, knowingly or unknowingly, could not see his point from the right perspective. I am repeating again that our Chief Minister is Charanjit Singh Channi. Sidhu is the president of the Pradesh Congress Committee. The face as the head of the government is Channi. Sidhu is the face as the state Congress president. Both of them will fight together with common workers and the Congress government will be formed again. Surjewala alleged that the Aam Aadmi Party, Akali Dal and BJP were insulting the son of a Dalit.

Rawat had on Saturday reportedly said that next year’s Punjab Assembly elections would be fought under Sidhu’s leadership. Former Punjab Pradesh Congress President Sunil Jakhar questioned Rawat’s alleged remarks and said it was likely to “weaken” the powers of the Chief Minister.

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When asked about Amarinder Singh’s displeasure, Surjewala said, “Captain Amarinder Singh ji is our elder. The Congress government under his leadership did a great job. There may be minor differences. I am sure that his blessings and support will remain with the Congress government.” The Congress Secretary said, “As soon as Channi ji became the Chief Minister, the first decision was taken to waive the water and sewerage bills of farmers, Dalits and OBCs. There will be many historic decisions ahead.

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