Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh Accepts Navjot Sidhu's Resignation

Navjot Singh Sidhu had refused to join the new Punjab ministry allocated to him after a state cabinet reshuffle under Captain Amarinder Singh on June 6 stripped him of the local bodies ministry

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Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh Accepts Navjot Sidhu's Resignation

Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh accepted Navjot Singh Sidhu's resignation today (File)


Chandigarh: 

Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh has accepted Navjot Singh Sidhu's resignation as state minister. Mr Sidhu had refused to join the new ministry allocated to him after a state cabinet reshuffle on June 6 stripped him of the local bodies ministry.

The Governor VP Singh Badnore has also accepted his resignation.

Mr Sidhu is in New Delhi, and is expected to meet Congress leader Priyanka Gandhi Vadra after she returns from Uttar Pradesh's Mirzapur, where she had gone to meet the families of those who were killed in a shootout in Sonbhadra between tribals and a village chief.

Mr Sidhu had sent his resignation as Punjab minister to the Chief Minister's home on Monday.

News that he had resigned from the Punjab cabinet, not now but a month ago, was revealed when the cricketer-turned-politician shared a letter he had submitted to Rahul Gandhi on June 10. The 55-year-old leader had met Rahul Gandhi and his sister Priyanka Gandhi in Delhi after he lost key portfolios in a cabinet shuffle following his public spat with Amarinder Singh.

Amritsar lawmaker Raj Kumar Verka, who is one of the claimants of the state power ministry, said Mr Sidhu "cannot overrule the Chief Minister". "Sidhu has resigned after not accepting the responsibility of a new ministry allocated to him by the CM. You can't overrule the chief minister. Sidhu can also move to Delhi for another leadership role since he had campaigned extensively throughout the country during the Lok Sabha elections," Mr Verka said.

Punjab minister Sadhu Singh Dharamsot said Mr Sidhu was not willing to work in the new role. "That is a good step if someone is not interested in accepting a new role. Whether he will be assigned the post of state president, will be decided by the high command," Mr Dharamsot said.

The Chief Minister reshuffled the state cabinet in the first meeting after national elections on June 6. He took away the Local Government portfolio from Mr Sidhu and assigned him Power and New and Renewable Energy Sources. Mr Sidhu's other portfolio of Tourism and Cultural Affairs was also taken away.

On the Congress's national election tally in Punjab - eight out of 13 - Amarinder Singh said the party failed to do well in urban areas because Mr Sidhu had handled his portfolio poorly. "We have 17 ministers. I changed the portfolio of 13 ministers including Sidhu. I was told he has sent his resignation," said the Chief Minister.

The feud escalated when Mr Sidhu went on Facebook live soon after the cabinet meet and said: "I cannot be taken for granted...I have been singled out in spite of collective responsibility."



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