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‘Missing’ Sidhu finally returns to Amritsar

Back to his seat: Amritsar Bharatiya Janata Party MP Navjot Singh Sidhu waves to his supporters on his return to the city on Saturday.   | Photo Credit: Photo: AFP

Amritsar: Amritsar MP and former cricketer Navjot Singh Sidhu finally returned to his constituency on Saturday after staying away for nearly three months.

The chirpy Sidhu, who is the Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) Lok Sabha MP from here, was apologetic to his supporters and the electorate for remaining away from the constituency.

Mr. Sidhu’s return came just two days after a local BJP leader, R.S. Chhina, resigned as Amritsar Improvement Trust chief. Mr. Sidhu had opposed Mr. Chhina’s appointment, saying he (Chhina) had worked against him in the Lok Sabha election in May.

Mr. Sidhu’s absence had given the opportunity to Congress leaders here to put up posters at prominent places in this city proclaiming that Mr. Sidhu was ‘missing’.

Former Congress legislator Raj Kumar Verka, who put up the posters, even filed a complaint with the police seeking registration of a ‘missing person’ case against Mr. Sidhu.

The former cricketer, who is seen a lot on TV laughter shows and as a cricket commentator, had even sent his resignation as MP to the BJP leadership. The fate of his resignation is unknown but Mr. Sidhu had vowed not to enter Amritsar till Mr. Chhina was removed from his post.

However, Mr. Chhina’s resignation is hardly a political victory for Mr. Sidhu as he (Chhina) has been appointed by the Punjab government, in which the BJP is an alliance partner with the Akali Dal, as chairman of the State’s export corporation.

Mr. Chhina’s new appointment is being seen as an elevation in political circles here. “Sidhu is like my younger brother. His action has got me a state-level assignment. I thank him for that,” Mr. Chhina said. BJP sources said that though Mr. Sidhu apologised to his supporters and voters, he reminded the BJP leadership not to go ahead with political appointments without consulting the local MP. IANS