Punjab Elections 2022: Bhagwant Mann is AAP’s CM face, Will Congress Pitch Sidhu?

As the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) announced Bhagwant Mann as the CM face, the cheers from the AAP office echoed at Congress leader Navjot Singh Sidhu’s as well.

Sources say the Sidhu camp watched in glee as they now feel that it has strengthened their chance to project Sidhu as Congress’s CM face.

A few days ago, an advertisement tweeted by the party had upset Sidhu as it seemed to project Charanjit Singh Channi as the CM face for the upcoming polls.

Sidhu’s supporters got in touch with the top leadership asking what the tweet was about. He was told that the tweet did not reflect any decision by the Gandhis. There is no CM face projected as yet and for now the Congress wants to play it safe by insisting that the elections will be fought under the collective leadership of Sidhu and Channi.

Randeep Surjewala, the media department head, said, “Charanji Singh Channi is the head of the government and he would be the face of the government. Sidhu is the head of organisation and he is its face. Both the faces are needed to fight the polls.”

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But the unease is too apparent. Sidhu has a reason to be hopeful that his chances have brightened with Mann being made the CM face.

The two have plenty in common. Former comedian Mann has a sense of humour which many feel can be matched only by Sidhu whose one-liners and experience in comedy shows can be a crowd puller. Interestingly, the two had met in September this year when AAP had distanced itself from Mann. This had triggered speculation that Mann could jump ship.

While in the last few days Charanjit Singh Channi has increased his position in the eyes of the Gandhis and Congress top leadership, when it comes to oratory and witty repartees, Sidhu has the edge. Punjabis love flamboyance and high decibel campaigns. Sidhu’s camp feels this means that he can match Mann. AAP is now emerging as a serious contender to the Congress. Sidhu, with his loud style, will continue with his consistent attacks on AAP and will now do so with Mann, which could tilt the scale in his favour. At least that’s what the former cricketer feels.

In fact, as AAP made its announcement, a pact was formed in the Congress headquarters. The party came out in support of Channi as the ED raided his nephew. Sidhu, too, was asked to condemn the raids. In exchange, Randeep Surjewala was dashed off to Chandigarh to hold a press conference with only Sidhu to make it clear that the latter mattered. For the Sidhu camp, this was a sixer.

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