Dr. Navjot Kaur Sidhu and Pargat Singh were on Monday formally inducted into the Congress in the presence of party’s Punjab unit president Captain Amarinder Singh. Besides Captain Amarinder, other party leaders present on the occasion included AICC in-charge Communications Randeep Surjwala and AICC general secretary in-charge Punjab Affairs Asha Kumari.Several Akali leaders from Jalandhar also joined the Congress in support of Pargat. They included Jaspal Singh Waraich, Maninder Singh Bawa, Ashwinderpal Singh, Harjinder Singh, Sarabdial Singh, Capt R.P.S Kang, Baldev Singh, Narinderpal Singh, Rajan Chopra, Bunny Sandhu and Sandeep Singh.Replying to a question on the possibility of her husband, Navjot Singh Sidhu, also joining the Congress, Dr. Navjot Kaur said she could not say anything about it at this juncture, but added, in a lighter vein, that she and her husband “are one soul and two bodies….and how long can soul stay without the body?”Dr. Sidhu made it clear that she had joined unconditionally and would fulfill whatever responsibility she is assigned by the party.Dr Navjot Kaur hails from Patiala and had been elected to the state legislative assembly from Amritsar East constituency in 2012 on a BJP ticket. She quit the party in October.
Pargat, who had won the 2012 Assembly elections from Jalandhar Cantt on Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) ticket, quit the party in September this year accusing party leader and Punjab deputy chief minister Sukhbir Singh Badal of betraying the trust of the people of the state. Along with ex-cricketer Navjot Singh Sidhu, he has formed Awaaz-e-Punjab – a new political front. He had, on November 16, resigned as MLA over the SYL issue. Talking to mediapersons later, Captain Amarinder warned that the SYL issue had the potential of escalating into an explosive situation, which could even trigger the revival of terrorism in Punjab.Warning that the entire belt from Sardulgarh to Abhor would go dry if the Supreme Court verdict on SYL is implemented, he said any move to deprive the people of the state of the much-needed river water could lead to the outbreak of violence, culminating in disastrous consequences for Punjab.Pointing out that the earlier outbreak of terrorist violence in Punjab had arisen from the Anandpur Sahib resolution, with water the main issue of dispute, Captain Amarinder said 35,000 people had been killed earlier.
Punjab, he said, could not afford a recurrence of such a situation.Captain Amarinder reiterated that the Supreme Court should have first assessed the quantum of water available with Punjab before coming out with its verdict, and stressed that Haryana had no riparian right to Sutlej or Ravi water. Captain Amarinder noted that Punjab had never staked claim to Yamuna river water, which it could easily have done.Blaming the Akali government in Punjab squarely for Sunday’s Nabha jail break, Captain Amarinder accused the Badals of trying to polarize the state on communal lines ahead of the Assembly polls, just as they had always done when faced with defeat.He pointed out that the four gangsters who had escaped along with the Khalistani terrorist from jail belonged to Muktsar and Jalalabad area from which the Badals hailed.The Punjab Congress chief revealed he had written to Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh and the Chief Election Commissioner seeking dismissal of the Badal government and imposition of the Code of Conduct. He demanded a CBI probe into the incident, saying a fair investigation would not be possible under the Punjab Police.