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Friday, September 9, 2016

Sidhu came, spoke but did he conquer?

#navjot sidhu #punjab politics #AAP #Akalis #fourth front #bains

Jupinderjit Singh

After a long wait Cricketer, commentator, TV personality and ex-MP of the BJP, Navjot Singh Sidhu came before media , spoke but did he conquer? This is the question he left gapping after about 45 minutes of speech peppered liberally with his oft-heard Sidhuisms based on couplets and idioms.

For a man who chose to speak through his wife and MLA and namesake Dr Navjot Kaur Sidhu for last over two years, the four time BJP MP revealed , to quote his own words, just  a trailer about the political happenings involving him for quite some time. 

He had remained mum like his well-guarded silence over several chapters of his life sports as well as political life. For instance, he is yet to reveal why he left India’s cricket tour of England mid-way over some tiff with the captian, Mohd. Azharudin. 

No kind of questioning and cajoling of all these years by media or others have cracked him up to reveal the secret.

Of the scores of issue he raised with thumping of chest and animated hand gestures at the press meet on Thursday, Sidhu’s speech can be summarised in three main parts.

One, that he was tired of being used as a decorative piece by his parent party-the BJP, the alliance partner-the Akalis and the prospective partner –the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP).  Second , on his political plans, he left the media and the state residents with another 15 days of wait to reveal the future plans-whether he will float a party or not.

And the third and the seemingly most important and most stressed by him was that he has been sacrificing and will sacrifice anything for the preservation of Punjab, Punjabi and Punjabiyat. Sidhu gave examples of how he spurned offers of money, position and other attractions to continue his principled life where he puts the state above his  party and his own self. The third point is where the people of the state would like to know more from him.

Sidhu asserted to make any sacrifice for Punjab but in the same breath he answered a query on continuing with the Kapil comedy show. Pat came the reply, “I have been doing shows and politics earlier also.” It clearly means that he will continue to do so. Sidhu sand his wife, who is a BJP MLA from Amritsar –east continue to be members of the party. 

Sidhu has not resigned from the BJP. For him, all doors are open. His wife has been most vocal critic of the Badal led SAD-BJP government. She has been demanded breaking up of alliance. Sidhu too dwelt long on how Badals were a block in his dreams of making Amritsar city, a modern city. He used less harsh words for the BJP and by not resigning he continues to cling on to the party.  

Has he given enough indications about his intent to  Punjab voters. They are already caught in a three way poll fight. Will they want a fourth one in him?  Will he deliver in 15 days or like the Sidhu of past few years he will play the victim, the one who is persecuted by all and yet keep his options open. 

Sidhu has reversed his fortunes and what people said about him in his past. He was called a stroke less wonder by cricket critics. he went on to become sixer sidhu. he was called shy and introvert. he left it all behind by becoming a no holds barred commentator and speaker. Perhaps, he willtake cue from that. The wait for 15 days has begun.

(the writer is a special correspondent with The Tribune. This is his personal blog)

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