Cricketer-turned-politician Navjot Singh Sidhu on Monday addressed the media and said he resigned from the Rajya Sabha as he was told that he can't be involved in Punjab, reported ANI. The 53-year-old said no political party is above the state for him. However, he did not mention explicitly whether he has resigned from the Bharatiya Janata Party as well, neither did he clarify whether he was joining the Aam Aadmi Party or not. The BJP's Punjab unit though has said that Sidhu is still a member of the party.
Sidhu said this was the third or fourth time that the party has asked him to stay clear of the state's politics. "I was told to fight election from Kurukshetra, then West Delhi. I said no, I wont betray my people," he said, adding that if he was asked to choose between Punjab, his family and the BJP, he would choose his state 100 times over.
"Jab Modi sahab ki lehar aayi to virodhi to doobe hi, Sidhu ko bhi dubo diya [the Modi wave did not just drown the opposition, but Sidhu as well]," he said, adding that he only wants to work for the benefit Punjab and Amritsar.
On Sunday, Punjab BJP President Vijay Sampla said, “Sidhu has resigned from the Rajya Sabha, not from the BJP. He may have some personal reasons but he has no grudge against the BJP.” He said he has tried to get in touch with Sidhu regarding his resignation from the House, but the latter did not respond, reported Hindustan Times.
Sidhu resigned from the Rajya Sabha on July 18. He was elected to the Amritsar Lok Sabha seat twice, in 2004 and 2009. On the same day, Aam Aadmi Party's Punjab convenor Sucha Singh Chotepur tweeted that the party would be happy to welcome both Sidhu and his wife.