CHANDIGARH: Less than a fortnight after he was ‘unceremoniously’ asked to quit as the Punjab Chief Minister in the run-up to the Assembly polls, Congress veteran Amarinder Singh is likely to meet Union Home Minister and BJP leader Amit Shah in Delhi late Tuesday evening.
The former Chief Minister is also likely to meet Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) President J.P. Nadda, sources said. However, Amarinder Singh’s media advisor denied his meeting with the BJP leaders, saying he’s on a personal visit to Delhi to meet some friends.
“Too much being read into @capt_amarinder’s visit to Delhi. He’s on a personal visit, during which he’ll meet some friends and also vacate Kapurthala house for the new CM. No need for any unnecessary speculation,” Thukral informed in a tweet. The proposed meeting seems crucial as Amarinder Singh has been saying that he stepped down as he felt ‘humiliated’.
At the same time, he said the “future politics option is always there” and he will use that option. Speculations are rife that Amarinder Singh is likely to join the BJP.
After his resignation, Amarinder Singh said he had offered his resignation to party President Sonia Gandhi three weeks earlier but she had asked him to continue. “If she had just called me and asked me to step down, I would have,” he said, adding that “as a soldier, I know how to do my task and leave once I am called back”.
He had said he had even told Sonia Gandhi that he was ready to hang his boots and allow someone else to take over as the Chief Minister after leading the Congress to another sweeping win in Punjab. “But that did not happen, so I will fight,” he asserted, taking strong exception to being subjected to humiliation by calling a Congress Legislative Party meeting in a secretive manner, without taking him into confidence.
“I would not have taken MLAs on a flight to Goa or some place. That is not how I operate. I don’t do gimmicks, and the Gandhi siblings know that is not my way,” he had said, adding, “Priyanka and Rahul (Gandhi siblings) are like my children, this should not have ended like this. I am hurt.”
He said the Gandhi children were quite inexperienced and their advisors were clearly misguiding them. Indicating that he was still keeping his political options open, the former Chief Minister had said he was talking to his friends before deciding on his future course of action. After his resignation and political tussle, Charanjit Singh Channi, a Scheduled Caste Sikh, took oath of office on September 20 along with his two deputies — one a Jat Sikh and another belonging to the Hindu community.
Sukhjinder Singh Randhawa and O.P. Soni, both ministers in previous Council of Ministers led by Amarinder Singh, took oath for the posts of the Deputy Chief Ministers.