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Posted at: Jul 20, 2019, 10:51 AM; last updated: Jul 21, 2019, 7:08 AM (IST)

Capt Amarinder accepts Navjot Singh Sidhu’s resignation

Capt Amarinder accepts Navjot Singh Sidhu’s resignation
Capt Amarinder Singh with Navjot Singh Sidhu. Tribune file

Rajmeet Singh 
Tribune News Service 
Chandigarh, July 20

Navjot Singh Sidhu is formally out of the Punjab Cabinet with both Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh and Governor VPS Badnore accepting his one-line resignation.
 
Within hours of the resignation letter being forwarded to him by the Chief Minister, the Governor conveyed his acceptance of the same.

The resignation was accepted five days after Sidhu resigned.

Capt Amarinder, who had been indisposed for the last two days since his arrival from Delhi, saw the resignation letter this morning and sent it to Badnore for formal acceptance.

The Chief Minister had earlier, in Delhi, said he would see the resignation letter, which was received at his Chandigarh residence in his absence, and take a decision.

The letter, however, was just a single sentence tendering Sidhu's resignation, with no explanation or elaboration

Meanwhile, Capt Amarinder will keep the Power portfolio with him for time being. Earlier, there were speculations whether he would continue with the existing council of ministers or induct another face in place of Sidhu. Apart from Rana Gurjeet Singh, former minister who had to resign after being named in the sand mining taint; Raja warring, MLA from Gidderbaha; and some other face from Doaba were among the probables.

After being cold-shouldered by his party leaders, speculations are rife that Sidhu could be given some role in the Central Congress Committee as he has a sympathiser in Congress general secretary Priyanka Gandhi. However, being an MLA, it would not be easy for him to face political manoeuvring by the Chief Minister’s camp.

Meanwhile, speculations were rife that top Congress leadership intervened in the matter to resolve issues between Singh and Sidhu. There was no confirmation from the party regarding the same.

Sidhu, who has been at loggerheads with Singh and was stripped off key portfolios in the Cabinet reshuffle in June, resigned from the state Cabinet on Monday.

The cricketer-turned-politician took to Twitter on Sunday, making public his June 10 resignation letter addressed to then Congress chief, just four days after his portfolio was changed.

Earlier this week, Singh had said if Sidhu did not want to do his job, there was nothing he could do about it.

On June 6, the chief minister had divested Sidhu of the Local Government and Tourism and Cultural Affairs departments and allotted him the Power and New and Renewable Energy portfolio.         

Ever since then, Sidhu and his wife Navjot Kaur have been maintaining a distance from the media.

The tension between Singh and his Cabinet colleague had come out in the open last month when the CM blamed Sidhu for the “inept handling” of the Local Government Department, claiming that it resulted in “poor performance” of the Congress in urban areas in this Lok Sabha polls. 

Sidhu, however, had said that his department was being “singled out publicly” while asserting that he could not be taken for granted as he had been a “performer” throughout. 

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