'I Feel Humiliated': Captain Amarinder Singh Resigns as Chief of India's Punjab State
17:18 GMT 18.09.2021 (Updated: 10:39 GMT 19.07.2022)
Fresh political turmoil hit India's Punjab state when Captain Amarinder Singh accused Congress party President Sonia Gandhi of humiliating him. Sources say he was asked to resign by Congress legislators to facilitate the election of a new leader and was also not kept in the loop about crucial party meetings during the past two months.
Ahead of the assembly elections in India, Punjab state chief Captain Amarinder Singh decided to resign from his post on Saturday. He was reportedly asked to step down by Congress leaders in order to facilitate the election of a new leader.
As per sources, over 50 legislators wrote to Congress President Sonia Gandhi demanding a replacement of Amarinder Singh as Punjab chief and did not have any faith in his ability to fulfil the poll promises.
An emergency meeting of Congress party legislators was called on Saturday.
Singh, who has been in politics for 52 years and was the long-time Congress leader, handed over his resignation papers to the governor on Saturday.
While addressing the media after the resignation, Singh shared that he had expressed his disappointment to Congress President Sonia Gandhi and said that he "can't continue in the party with this kind of humiliation". He was disheartened for not being kept in the loop regarding crucial party meetings regarding the legislative election, something that happened three times in the past two months.
“This is the third time the party called the meeting with the MLAs [Member of the Legislative Assembly]. You have an element of doubt on me…. I feel humiliated. They can make the person they trust the CM [Chief Minister]”, Singh told Indian media.
Singh clarified that although he has stepped down from his post as the chief of Punjab, he has not quit the Congress party.
“As far as my future politics is concerned, there is always an option and I will use that option when time comes. I am in the Congress party. I will talk to my supporters and decide future course of politics”, Singh said.
The state goes to the polls early next year.
Congress-governed Punjab state witnessed a face-off between state chief Amarinder Singh and rebel leader Navjot Singh Sidhu, who resigned from the state Cabinet two years ago after a rift with the former.
Amid speculations that Sidhu would be made the next chief of Punjab, Singh believes that such a decision would be disastrous and a threat to national security, as Sidhu is friends with Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan and has a relation with Army chief Gen. Qamar Javed Bajwa.
"Navjot Singh Sidhu is an incompetent man, he is going to be a disaster. I will oppose his name for the next CM [Chief Minister] face. He has a connection with Pakistan. It will be a threat to national security", Singh told Indian newswire ANI.
Netizens have sparked a social media uproar over the political rift within the Congress party.