Former Punjab CM Charanjit Channi’s candidature raises hope for Congress : The Tribune India

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Former Punjab CM Charanjit Channi’s candidature raises hope for Congress

Being the only CM so far from SC community, Channi remains to be the most popular SC face among the Doabites

Former Punjab CM Charanjit Channi’s candidature raises hope for Congress

Former Punjab CM Charanjit Singh Channi. File photo



Tribune News Service

Deepkamal Kaur

Jalandhar, April 14

As expected, former Chief Minister Charanjit Singh Channi was announced as the Congress candidate for Jalandhar (reserved) Lok Sabha seat on Sunday.

The announcement brought a lot of enthusiasm in the party leaders and workers in the region, who are expecting the party graph to soar with his presence.

Being the only CM of Punjab so far from the SC community, he remains to be the most popular SC face among the Doabites. Even though he remained CM barely for three months, he got a huge fan following from Jalandhar and surrounding districts.

It was his projection as the CM face in 2022 Assembly polls that created a ‘Channi wave’ in Jalandhar and led to victory of Congress in five of nine segments.

The fact is, however, being constantly denied by Phillaur MLA and son of deceased MP Santokh Singh Chaudhary, Vikramjit Chaudhary.

Barring Chaudhary, all other four Congress MLAs from Jalandhar including Sukhwinder Kotli, Pargat Singh, Hardev S Laddi Sherowalia and Bawa Henry are in his favour.

The recent cutting of his birthday cake at Morinda with words ‘Sada Channi Jalandhar’ had proven it all. They are all expecting that Channi's descend in Jalandhar will help party increase their Assembly-wise vote share in the ensuing elections.

The fact that Channi is very popular among the functionaries and visitors to Jalandhar deras has also worried the rival candidates.

As CM, he had announced a grant of Rs 25 crore for the setting up of Guru Ravidass Research Centre at Dera Sachkhand Ballan. The project, however, has been a non-starter for which he gives discredit to the AAP leadership.

Channi, however, faces several challenges too. The most immediate one is to handle Phillaur MLA Chaudhary.

His wife's nephew Bhupinder Honey is facing inquiry into the alleged case of Prevention of Money Laundering Act since the recovery of Rs 10 crore from his place ahead of 2022 Assembly poll.

He is also facing allegations of having helped private institutions in the SC Post Matric Scholarship Scam.

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