Cricketer-turned-politician Navjot Singh Sidhu on Sunday joined Congress ahead of assembly poll in Punjab after meeting party Vice President Rahul Gandhi. Sidhu’s wife Navjot Kaur had joined Congress in November last year leading to speculation that he may follow suit.
Punjab Congress in-charge Asha Kumari, confirming the development said, Sidhu met party vice-president Rahul Gandhi at the latter’s residence and formally joined the grand oldest party.
According to sources, Sidhu had expressed his desire to join the Congress in Rahul’s presence, but had to change his dates as the party vice-president was out of the country.
Soon after joining Congress, Sidhu tweeted, “Beginning of a new inning. On the front foot…….. Punjab, Punjabiyat and every Punjabi must win !!!” (SIC)
“Indian National Congress (INC) welcomes S Navjot Singh Sidhu into Congress family and we thank Congress vice-president for his visionary approach in bringing together like-minded people on common platform under the Congress umbrella,” Congress spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala said in a statement.
“Known for straight taking, ideological commitment to the cause of nationalism as also wit and humour, we are certain that Congress party will be immensely strengthened in Punjab and elsewhere with the entry of Sidhu,” said the statement posted on the party twitter handle.
The Congress on Friday released the fourth list for Punjab assembly elections but Navjot Singh’s name was missing from the list.
The Congress has so far released the names of 108 of the 117 candidates for the February 4 polls.
Navjot Kaur along with Pargat Singh, a former Akali Dal legislator who had joined hands with Sidhu to form the outfit Awaaz—E Punjab, had joined Congress after the Sidhus left the BJP.