Newly appointed Punjab Congress chief Navjot Singh Sidhu was accorded a rousing welcome as he visited Khatkar Kalan, the ancestral village of Bhagat Singh, to pay tributes to the freedom fighter.
“I have come here to seek guidance and to awaken the spirit of truth and rights among every Punjabi and Congress worker,” Sidhu told reporters after paying his tributes at a memorial.
The 57-year-old Amritsar East MLA also received a welcome when he reached the city. Party rank and file lined up with garlands, banners, flags and bouquets at Golden Gate, the main entrance to Amritsar from National Highway 1, to welcome Sidhu, who was accompanied by four working presidents and Fatehgarh Sahib MLA Kuljit Singh Nagra, and Nawanshahr MLA Angad Singh Saini. Amritsar has sent Sidhu to Parliament three times.
Talking to reporters, Sidhu reiterated his focus on the Punjab model. “The 18-point programme released by the Congress high command will pave the way for people to be shareholders of power. Let the power given by the people be returned to them in the form of development,” he said.
Meanwhile, a group of 20 farmers arrived outside the Bhagat Singh museum to show black flags to the state Congress chief. They later said they wanted to question Sidhu over the party’s poll promises for farmers. Police kept the protesters at bay till Sidhu left the venue.
“The protesters wanted to question Sidhu. The Congress leaders were on the other side and wanted to avoid clashes. No lathicharge was done,” Avtar Singh, station house officer of Banga, was quoted as saying by news agency ANI.