Four leaders of the Punjab Congress resigned from their respective posts on Tuesday hours after party’s state unit chief Navjot Singh Sidhu stepped down from his post.
Punjab minister Razia Sultana resigned from the state Cabinet, reported The Tribune. In her resignation letter, Sultana said that she was quitting “in solidarity with” Sidhu.
General secretary of the state unit Yoginder Dhingra also resigned citing the same reason, ANI reported. The Congress’ treasurer in the state Gulzar Inder Chahal, and Gautam Seth, the party’s general secretary (in charge of training), have also quit, according to the news agency.
Sultana was inducted into the Cabinet along with 14 other MLAs on Sunday. She was given the water supply and sanitation, social security, women and child development, printing and stationery portfolios on Tuesday.
“Sidhu Sahab is a man of principles,” she told reporters after quitting, ANI reported. “He is fighting for Punjab and Punjabiyat.”
Sultana is considered close to Sidhu, according to PTI. Her husband Mohammad Mustafa, a former Indian Police Service officer, is principal strategic adviser to Sidhu.
Earlier on Tuesday, Sidhu sent his resignation letter to Congress President Sonia Gandhi. Sidhu, however, said that he will continue to serve the party.
“The collapse of a man’s character stems from the compromise corner, I can never compromise on Punjab’s future and the agenda for the welfare of Punjab,” he wrote in the resignation letter.
The resignations mark the latest turn of events in the political crisis within the Punjab unit of the Congress.
Party leader Amarinder Singh had stepped down as chief minister of the state on September 18 following differences with Sidhu. The tussle between the two leaders, which dates back to 2019, exacerbated after Sidhu was appointed the Congress’ chief in Punjab on July 18.
Following Singh’s resignation, Charanjit Singh Channi took oath as chief minister of the state on September 20.