Amarinder to meet party workers in Amritsar today

Congress

Punjab Pardesh Congress Committee (PPCC) chief and former chief minister Capt Amarinder Singh"s daylong programme here on Monday to meet workers may pose a new challenge for him to check factionalism within the party. As the next Assembly polls draw nearer, the Opposition party is witnessing an increasing groupism throughout the Majha region, having 26 out of total 117 Assembly seats, with the race for party tickets already on in Amritsar, Gurdaspur and Tarn Taran districts.

The factionalism was evident during the preparations being made for the meeting when local women leaders Madhu Khanna and Preeti indulged in a verbal spat last week. While the groups belonging to urban areas and rural areas are already at the loggerheads, some leaders like Jasbir Singh Dimpa, who is vying for a new seat after his parent Assembly segment Beas declared a 'reserved' seat is giving sleepless nights to many party leaders.

At almost all seats in the three border districts, there are more than three aspirants for the tickets and intense lobbying is on. Apart from senior leaders, the second-rung leadership and new entrants, too, are making trips to Chandigarh and Delhi to lay their claims.

Former minister Chaduhary Santokh Singh, in charge of Monday's programmes, said the meeting with workers would be the first one in the series. "Workers from four urban Assembly seats of the city will meet the party chief. They will give inputs and get special instructions from him to gear up for the polls," he said.

About the rising factionalism, he said there was a lot of enthusiasm within the party for elections, which should not be taken as infighting as their's was a disciplined party. The clash of women leaders, he said, was an isolated case and they would take disciplinary against the two.

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