Punjab Chief Minister Meets Top Brass In Delhi Over Cabinet Formation

Charanjit Singh Channi is likely to replace a few ministers who are said to be loyal to former Punjab chief minister Amarinder Singh.

Punjab Chief Minister Meets Top Brass In Delhi Over Cabinet Formation

Charanjit Singh Channi is likely to replace a few ministers in new cabinet.

New Delhi/Chandigarh:

Punjab Chief Minister Charanjit Singh Channi is learnt to have discussed the formation of his cabinet with Congress leader Rahul Gandhi in New Delhi on Thursday, sources said.

Mr Channi, who arrived in the national capital in the evening, earlier discussed the list of names for inclusion in his cabinet with All India Congress Committee (AICC) general secretary in-charge of Punjab affairs Harish Rawat.

Thereafter, the two leaders are learnt to have met and discussed the same with Mr Gandhi.

Mr Channi is likely to replace a few ministers who are said to be loyal to former Punjab chief minister Amarinder Singh. There are also two vacancies that have to be filled in place of Amarinder Singh and state Congress chief Navjot Singh Sidhu.

Mr Sidhu's post has not been filled since he resigned from the Punjab cabinet in 2019.

Working president of the Punjab Congress Sangat Singh Gilzian and party leader Manpreet Singh Badal were also in Delhi, the sources said.

Mr Channi's visit to the national capital assumes significance as Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi Vadra returned to the national capital from Shimla on Wednesday.

Former Punjab Congress chief Sunil Jakhar had accompanied Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi on a flight to Delhi.

Mr Channi, his two deputies Sukhjinder Singh Randhawa and OP Soni; and Mr Sidhu, went to Delhi on Tuesday to discuss the expansion of the state cabinet with the Congress leadership.

They met Congress general secretary K C Venugopal and Mr Rawat.

The cabinet is likely to see some fresh faces, the sources said.

The names of Pargat Singh, Raj Kumar Verka, Gurkirat Singh Kotli, Sangat Singh Gilzian, Surjit Dhiman, Amarinder Singh Raja Warring and Kuljit Singh Nagra are doing the rounds.

Pargat Singh, considered close to Mr Sidhu, is at present the Punjab Congress general secretary and Gilzian is a working president of the party's state unit.

There is a speculation that Amarinder Singh's staunch loyalists -- Rana Gurmit Singh Sodhi, who was the sports minister, and Sadhu Singh Dharamsot, who was the social justice empowerment minister -- may be dropped from the cabinet.