Updated on: Sunday, October 17, 2021, 03:25 PM IST

‘Last chance for resurrection’: Navjot Singh Sidhu writes to Sonia Gandhi on 13-point agenda for Punjab

Navjot Singh Sidhu | Photo Credit: ANI

Navjot Singh Sidhu | Photo Credit: ANI


Punjab Congress leader Navjot Singh Sidhu has written a letter to Sonia Gandhi, seeking a meeting to present a 13-point agenda for the party's campaign for the Assembly polls due next year.

The letter, which is dated October 15, comes a day after Navjot Singh Sidhu met Congress leaders Rahul Gandhi and KC Venugopal and withdrew his resignation as Punjab Congress president, saying "everything has been sorted out".

Navjot Singh Sidhu sought a personal meeting with Sonia Gandhi, stating that this is “Punjab’s last chance for resurrection and redemption.”

The letter to Sonia Gandhi reminded her of the party's 18-point agenda "given to the last chief minister" of Punjab and said that those were "equally relevant today".

"Today, I write to your esteemed self with priority areas among the 18-point agenda of the 2017 campaign and the manifesto promises which the state government must deliver upon." Sidhu then said the people of Punjab demand justice for the 2015 police firing at Kotkapura and Behbal Kalan in Faridkot following the desecration of the Guru Granth Sahib during the previous SAD-BJP regime.

On the drugs issue, the Punjab Congress chief said, "The big fish mentioned in the STF report must be immediately arrested and given exemplary punishment." He also wrote that the state government must reject the "three black farm laws" of the Centre "by announcing that they will not be implemented in Punjab at any cost".

The state government must release a white paper on power purchase agreements and cancellation of "all faulty PPAs as promised by us", Sidhu said in the letter.

"Thus, I request you kindly consider these points and give your august direction to the state government to act in the best interests of the people of Punjab immediately," he wrote.

In the letter, Sidhu sought a meeting with Sonia Gandhi to present to her a "Punjab Model with a 13-Point Agenda to be part of the Congress manifesto for the 2022 Assembly Elections".

The Punjab Congress chief described the "13-point agenda" as separate from the manifesto by "means of its long-term vision to be implemented over a longer period, crafted through years of consultations with academics, civil society, party workers and feedback from the people of Punjab".

Days after resigning as Punjab Congress chief, Navjot Singh Sidhu on Friday said his concerns have been resolved and the party asserted that he will continue as the head of the state unit.

AICC general secretary in-charge Punjab Harish Rawat told reporters that Sidhu has withdrawn his resignation and will continue in his post as the matter of the resignation is now over for the party.

Resolution to the issue came after Sidhu met former party chief Rahul Gandhi at his residence here and raised his concerns.

Sidhu had tendered his resignation as Punjab Congress chief on September 28. He was reportedly upset over the bureaucratic setup and his commands not being followed after Cabinet expansion in Punjab. But his resignation was not accepted by the party.

This came as a big blow to the Congress that was hoping to resolve the turmoil in the Congress unit of Punjab ahead of the Assembly elections early next year.

Charanjeet Singh Channi took oath as the 16th Chief Minister of Punjab on September 20, days after Captain Amarinder Singh stepped down from the post of Punjab Chief Minister following months of infighting between him and Navjot Singh Sidhu.

Captain Amarinder Singh had resigned as Chief Minister on September 18 and had told the media that the Congress leadership had let him down. He had also taken a dig at Sidhu over his resignation, saying he is not a stable man. Sidhu was made PCC chief by Congress leadership in July to stem infighting in Punjab Congress ahead of next year's assembly polls but the party is now grappling with a fresh crisis.

(With inputs from Agencies)


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Published on: Sunday, October 17, 2021, 02:24 PM IST