The upcoming 2022 elections in Punjab are in the limelight for multiple reasons and the tussle between Navjot Singh Sidhu and Captain Amarinder Singh is one of them. The continued infight in the Punjab Congress is talk of the town and the Captain, after he was rebuffed by the Gandhis, is likely to step in with a decision soon.
However, the cricketer-turned-politician, Navjot Singh Sidhu, has already swung into action and met few of the Captain’s loyalists, in what can be considered as an effort to probably make the loyalists switch sides. He was seen meeting Punjab Legislative Assembly Speaker Rana KP Singh, the Congress MLA from Sri Anandpur Sahib and Congress legislator Kuljit Singh Nagra.
As things stand in the Punjab Congress, there are the four options that Amarinder Singh can go with on the result day of the upcoming elections:
If the result goes in favour of Sidhu and more of his loyalists come into power, then it would be the end of the line for the Captain’s political career. Considering the fact that Amarinder is not a yes man who keeps nodding to every directive given to him and with Sidhu becoming the CM, there is a possibility that the results would make him resign and fade away.
But, keeping the Captain’s rebellious behaviour and never give up attitude in mind, the chances for this instance are highly unlikely.
Acceptance of the Verdict
If not resignation, Captain will choose the loyalty towards the party over his tussle with Sidhu. Amarinder has been with Congress since 1996 and together, they have performed well. Incidentally, Punjab is one of the handful states where Congress has done well. Eventually, the party will not want Captain to be riling over any issue and make him stick by the party’s side. This will force him to accept the verdict. Moreover, he could eventually be sidelined, as was in the case of PV Narasimha Rao and Sitaram Kesri, and gradually fade from the political history of Congress.
However, considering the ideological differences between Amarinder and Sidhu, if Sidhu becomes the CM, Amarinder will accept the outcome.
Alliance with BJP
The letter written by Singh to PM Modi with regards to the farmers’ protests set the speculation market abuzz. His future in the party assumes greater importance and highlights the speculations that if Sidhu becomes the Chief Minister, Singh might ditch the grand old party and join the BJP camp.
As reported by TFI, Captain has mostly taken a pro-Nation stance unlike his party and its members. In the aftermath of the dastardly Pulwama attack, Captain had aggressively batted for the central government to retaliate and thus his inclusion might not be as divisive on the ideological lines. Connecting the dots, it will be justified to assume that he will be joining the BJP and if not, he will be floating his own party and support the BJP from outside.
However, in both cases, Congress will witness a shortfall in the vote share as the exit of Amarinder from the party would ultimately cost 21 per cent (Jat Sikhs) of the votes to the congress.
Read More: Could Captain Amarinder Singh join the BJP?
Enjoy the power and stability
If Amarinder’s loyalists encash most of the vote shares and he continues to preserve the power, the chaos will come to an end, and everything will settle down. Where the party is considered, it is the only instance where the party could save everything from going haywire and there will be no split in the end. This is the only scenario in which Congress would be able to maintain their rule in Punjab and have some stability in the party. Congress should pray that this is the case and hope that Amarinder doesn’t seek retribution for making Sidhu the state Congress President.
However, given the chaos and turmoil in the Punjab Congress, the chance of a split is highly likely. The Gandhis have already insulted Amarinder by making Sidhu, the Gandhi puppet, the Punjab Congress Chief. Which was an obvious step against Amarinder in an effort to cut him to size.