Captain Amarinder Singh, veteran politician and face of the Congress campaign in Punjab, has said he was on the verge of quitting the party and starting his independent political outfit. Revealing this for the first time, Captain Singh said he conveyed as much to both party chief Sonia Gandhi and Rahul. Speaking on NDTV’s special series The Townhall, he said this was going to be his last election and had told the party leadership he was best placed to take on the challenge from the ruling Akali government and that from the Aam Aadmi Party. But he must be given more freedom by the party leadership, he said.
Punjab Congress chief Captain Amarinder Singh on Monday said he was on the verge of quitting the Congress and forming his own party last year, the time when he was locked in an intra-party tussle to get back the state unit chair from Partap Singh Bajwa. In an interview to a TV channel, he said he told party president Sonia Gandhi and vice-president Rahul Gandhi that “if you don’t need me, let me fight my own battle”. He added, “Rahul told me that then both of us will lose, and I said, ‘so be it’.”
He said it wasn’t blackmail, “but some days later I was called and told that you (Amarinder) had to take over the party (in Punjab)”. Asked what he was frustrated, he said he did not think nobody could replace him ever: “But, yes, I thought that particular person (Bajwa) could not do it.”