Tribune News Service
New Delhi, September 20
Former Punjab Chief Minister Capt Amarinder Singh is playing his cards close to his chest, leaving observers guessing over his next move — whether he will favour the BJP or float his own party or stay in the Congress and play a spoilsport in the upcoming elections — while sources say the BJP is “in touch with those unhappy with the latest political developments in the ruling party in Punjab”.
All possibilities are open till the last move, they say, pointing to the “continuing infighting” in the ruling party even after the resignation of Capt Amarinder from the CM’s post.
The BJP, which is contesting the Punjab elections on its own (so far) for the first time after the Akali Dal left the NDA alliance, is looking for strong candidates to contest and perhaps be its chief ministerial candidate in the state.
Observers, too, believe the BJP can benefit from an association of any form with someone like Capt Amarinder with strong nationalist credentials, the main issue of the BJP.
With only the three farm legislations standing between him and the BJP, the observers say the saffron outfit may stand a good chance in Punjab if it decides to take a step back on the contentious matter or enacts a stringent law on the MSP, which Sangh affiliate — the Bharatiya Kisan Sangh — is also demanding.
The BJP is keeping a close watch on the developments in Punjab and intends to keep up the pressure on new CM Charanjit Singh Channi.
Meanwhile, the BJP today accused the Congress of using “Dalits like pawns”, challenging it to “guarantee” that the CM for “six months” Channi will “not be dropped” in favour of someone else after the elections.
The BJP IT cell in charge, Amit Malviya, called Dalits “mere political pawns in Congress’ devious politics. In Punjab, they claim to have made the CM from the Scheduled Caste community, only to be posted as a night watchman, till Gandhi family loyalist (Navjot Singh) Sidhu takes over, but maintain deafening silence over lynching of a Dalit youth in Rajasthan”.
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