Punjab Chief Minister Charanjit Singh Channi  |  Photo Credit: ANI
Chandigarh: As the Punjab Assembly elections inch closer, Congress leaders appear to be uncertain about their Chief Ministerial candidate. A day after state Congress president Navjot Singh Sidhu said that the people of the state would decide who would hold the post, the existing CM – Charanjit Singh Channi – has demurred. He in turn suggested that the party announce a Chief Ministerial candidate ahead of the polls.
“Last time when they had declared Captain (as CM’s face) we won and previous time the (CM) candidate was not declared we lost and before that when they gave (CM candidate) we won and when they did not declare candidate we lost. This time they should give (declare the CM candidate). (Navjot) Sidhu is also saying that they should declare,” he noted during his interaction with a local TV channel. While he stressed his own popularity as a political leader, Channi refused to name names.
“People of Punjab will decide who will be the Chief Minister. Who told you that the (Congress) high command will make the CM?” Sidhu had asked during an interaction with the media earlier this week. Until recently, however, Sidhu had been of a similar mind, with reports suggesting that he wished to assume the chief ministerial mantle.
Meanwhile, fellow party leader Manish Tewari on Wednesday attacked Channi, saying the state requires a leader who has solutions to challenges and takes tough decisions. Citing reportage of the CM’s recent comments, he said that Punjab required a “serious” leader. “Punjab needs serious people whose politics is not Social Engineering, Entertainment, Freebies and not regime favourites rejected by people in successive elections,” he tweeted.
In recent days, opposition parties have targeted the Congress, contending that it has many chief ministerial aspirants including its state unit president Navjot Singh Sidhu and party leader Sunil Jakhar.