Wed, 25 May 2022

New Delhi [India], January 17 (ANI): The Congress seems to be backing Punjab Chief Minister Charanjit Singh Channi in the sweepstakes for the chief ministerial candidate in poll-bound Punjab with the party officially tweeting a video in which actor Sonu Sood states that the "real chief minister is the one who does not have to tell he is the chief ministerial candidate".

The video has footage of the Chief Minister Channi taking part in various events and comes amid an apparent tussle between Channi and Punjab Congress chief Navjot Singh Sidhu for being declared the Chief Ministerial candidate ahead of Punjab assembly polls.

Sidhu, who has been talking of changing "the system," is not seen in the campaign video.

Actor Sonu Sood, whose sister Malvika Sood, has been declared Congress candidate from Moga, says in the video that the "real chief minister, the real king is the one who has to be forcibly brought to the chair and who does not have to struggle for it."'The real chief minister, the real king is the one who has to forcibly brought to the chair and who does not have to struggle for it and does not have to state that I am CM candidate, I deserve it. He should be such a backbencher, who is brought from behind and told that you deserve it. Such a chief minister can bring change in the country," Sood says in the video.

"Punjab is saying that now we are with hand (Congress poll symbol), we will strengthen it," the party said in the tweet.

The party has not declared a chief ministerial candidate.

Channi was picked up by Congress leadership after Capt Amarinder Singh resigned as Chief Minister in September last year and the parting of ways was bitter.

Amid seeming tussle in Punjab Congress over the declaration of chief ministerial candidate ahead of assembly polls, Sidhu had said on Thursday last that he is "not running for any post" and took a swipe at the "system" which, he said, "could not give justice" in sacrilege and drugs cases.

Sidhu in his tweets seemingly threatened the party's government in the state and also the party's central leadership which has made decisions concerning Punjab leadership over the past five years.

"It's either this system will stay or Navjot Singh Sidhu," he said indicating that he may quit if there is change desired by him.

He had also said the system is being run by "mafias in connivance of mischievous politicians".

"A system which could not give justice to our Guru and could not punish the big fishes involved in Drug trade needs to be demolished. I categorically state that I'm not running for any post and it's either this system will stay or Navjot Singh Sidhu," he said in a tweet.

Sidhu alleged that the glory of Punjab has been "annihilated by the nexus of few political leaders and mafia".

"The fight is to change this system which has eroded Punjab like termites and is being run by Mafias in connivance of mischievous politicians. This system cries for a change and reforms as the glory of Punjab has been annihilated by the nexus of Few political leaders and Mafia," he said.

Sidhu's tweets had come a day after he had said that it was for the people of Punjab to decide who will be the next chief minister of Punjab and not party high command.

Channi had also said in an interview that the party should declare a chief ministerial candidate to brighten his prospects in the forthcoming assembly polls.

Sidhu has in the past has taken on party government in the state over "inaction" in the cases related to desecration of Guru Granth Sahib and the subsequent police firing in 2015 and drug trade and again referred to these issues in his latest tweets.

Sidhu had earlier also said that registering an FIR against Akali leader Bikram Singh Majithia under NDPS Act was not enough and he will not rest till he is arrested. Majithia has been granted interim bail by the High Court.

Punjab will now go to the polls on Februray 20 and the ruling Congress in Punjab faces internal challenges apart from a multi-cornered contest. (ANI)

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