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Cong Dalit leader Charanjit Singh Channi takes oath as Punjab CM; Rahul attends ceremony, Amarinder skips Punjab Politics
Charanjit Singh Channi taking oath | Image Credit: Screenshot grab from video

Cong Dalit leader Charanjit Singh Channi takes oath as Punjab CM; Rahul attends ceremony, Amarinder skips

IBNS | @indiablooms | 20 Sep 2021, 12:14 pm

Chandigarh/IBNS: Succeeding tall politician Captain Amarinder Singh, Congress' Dalit leader Charanjit Singh Channi Monday took oath as the new Punjab Chief Minister with barelya  few months to go for the next assembly elections in the state.

Channi was administered the oath by Governor Banwarilal Purohit.

Congress leader SS Randhawa and OP Soni took oath as the two Deputy Chief Ministers.

While Congress MP and party's de facto number two, Rahul Gandhi, attended the swearing-in ceremony, Amarinder Singh, who had "felt" humiliated by the entire development, skipped the event, exposing the power tussle within the outfit.

With 32 per cent of the Punjab voters being Dalit, the Congress' selection of the new Chief Minister has disrupted the political equations in the northern state.

Channi was Technical Educational and Industrial Training Minister in the Captain government.

He was the Leader of Opposition in the Punjab Vidhan Sabha from 2015 to 2016.

Though Channi, a Gandhi loyalist and close to Navjot Sidhu, has become the Chief Minister, infighting still continues.

Former Punjab Congress president Sunil Jakhar Monday hit out at the party's state in-charge Harish Rawat, who said the upcoming elections in 2022 will be fought under present state president Navjot Singh Sidhu.

Slamming Rawat, Jakhar tweeted, "On the swearing-in day of Sh @Charnjit_channi as Chief Minister, Mr Rawats’s statement that “elections will be fought under Sidhu”, is baffling. It’s likely to undermine CM’s authority but also negate the very ‘raison d’être’ of his selection for this position."

Meanwhile, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), which has lost a little relevance in the state politics following its split with Shiromani Akali Dal, views Channi's appointment as an "insult" to the Dalit community.

Quoting Jakhar's tweet, BJP IT cell head Amit Malviya tweeted, " This is a huge insult to the entire Dalit community if Charanjit Singh Channi has been made the CM, only to hold the seat for Navjot Singh Sidhu, the chosen Gandhi family loyalist. This completely undermines the Dalit empowerment narrative being peddled by the Congress. Shame."

Harjot Singh Bains, spokesperson of Punjab Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), Sunday commented, "Cong Has Lost The Trust!! Congress has failed the people of Punjab, unable to fulfill even a single promise made in 2017 election. "People will teach them a lesson in 2022 elections."

Congratulating Channi for becoming the new Chief Minister, Prime Minister Narendra Modi tweeted, "Congratulations to Shri Charanjit Singh Channi Ji on being sworn-in as Punjab’s Chief Minister. Will continue to work with the Punjab government for the betterment of the people of Punjab."