Cricketer-turned-politician Navjot Singh Sidhu on Wednesday said that his newly-floated front Aawaaz-e-Punjab will not be a political party, but will serve as a political forum. "The forum welcomes any alliance for the betterment of Punjab and will not be a political party. May Punjab, Punjabiat and every Punjabi win", he said in a statement. Sidhu added that he had weighed the "pros and cons" of the move and decided to "give clarity" to the people of the state on whom to vote for in Punjab's interest, ANI reported.
Sidhu's announcement comes two weeks after he launched Aawaaz-e-Punjab with hockey player-turned-politician Pargat Singh and independent politicians, the Bains brothers. The former Bharatiya Janata Party MP, who formally resigned from the BJP on September 16, said they would not divide the anti-incumbency vote bank, saying it could indirectly work in favour of the "corroborative and collusive Badal-Amrinder nexus that has plundered Punjab in the last 15 years".
He also said that three months is "too short a time" for a new party to win a state election. "Politics is not a profession but a mission. There is no personal or political vendetta, just a burning desire to place Punjab ahead of us and reinforce the positive forces," he added.
The 52-year-old had formed the front on September 2, calling it "the resurrection and the revival" of Punjab and vowing to "shake the system that had ruined the state". After Sidhu had resigned as a Rajya Sabha MP on July 18, there was speculation that he would leave the BJP and join the Aam Aadmi Party instead. Sidhu had said he had stepped down as he had been asked to stay away from Punjab.