Navjot Singh Sidhu, cricketer-turned-politician had resigned from Rajya Sabha. He also had formally quit BJP. AAP leaders in Punjab had said that Sidhu will join AAP but he will not contest assembly elections that are due next year. He will not be projected as the chief ministerial candidate.
“Our high command has made it amply clear that Sidhu will join the party and campaign. The question of how he will fare as the CM face does not arise,” AAP’s state convener Sucha Singh Chhotepur told HT.
In Bathinda, Chhotepur said that Sidhu will not contest the upcoming Punjab elections. He added that Navjot Kaur Sidhu wife of Sidhu and BJP MLA had met Arvind Kejriwal in Delhi four months ago.
Echoing Chhotepur’s view, Sangrur MP and AAP campaign committee in-charge Bhagwant Mann said Sidhu will join and campaign, but “he is not going to contest, hence cannot be the CM candidate of the party in the run-up to the elections”.
However, both the leaders had repeated their “divergent views” that they should not project a CM face at all.
Chhotepur, a former Akali veteran, said, “Personally, I believe a CM face should not be projected in Punjab. The CM should be chosen by the winning MLAs after the elections, in line with the highest principles of democracy.”
However Mann said that it is essential for AAP to announce a CM Face during the campaign. He added that voters who have to make a choice and vote had the right to know who they are connecting themselves with.
CM Candidate is very important leader of the party and also source of inspiration for the party workers. AAP should have been the first party to declare their CM Candidate.
He added that in Delhi for example, AAP had posters on auto-rickshaws saying “Arvind Kejriwal versus who?”. The posters gave the voters message that, AAP is confident of winning and had the guts “to stick there neck out.” He thinks something similar should be done in Punjab.