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Manish Tiwari Says ‘No Secret’ After Cong Skips Him From Star Campaigner List

"I would have been pleasantly surprised if it would have been the other way around. The reasons are also no state secret," Manish Tewari said in a tweet.

Updated: February 5, 2022 11:26 AM IST

By News Desk | Edited by Sanstuti Nath

Manish Tewari (File Photo)
Manish Tewari (File Photo)

New Delhi: After not finding a space on the list of Congress’ star campaigners for the Punjab assembly elections 2022, Congress MP Manish Tewari on Saturday took a swipe at the party and said that he would “have been surprised” if it had been any different. Notably, Tiwari is a prominent face of Congress’ Group-23 leaders, who had demanded organisational elections in the party last year. “I would have been pleasantly surprised if it would have been the other way around. The reasons are also no state secret,” Tewari said in a tweet.

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Later talking to news agency ANI, Tiwari reiterated that he would have been surprised had his name been there on the list. He emphasised that he was not dropped because of his religion, and said, “as far as Hindu-Sikh is concerned, it has never been an issue in Punjab. Had it ever been an issue, I would’ve not been MP from Sri Anandpur Sahib.”

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“There are no differences between Hindus and Sikhs in Punjab. It is true that perhaps to stop Sunil Jakhar at that time, some ‘Mathadheesh’ who are sitting in Delhi might have used such a narrow mindset,” he added.
The senior Congress leader added that as an MP and a political worker,he “personally” thinks that in a democracy the right to elect Chief Minister lies with elected MLAs. “Who leads the campaign, who becomes the face of the campaign can be decided by the party,” he said.

Earlier on Friday, Congress released the list of star campaigners for the upcoming Punjab Assembly elections and the names of prominent G-23 leaders of the Congress Ghulam Nabi Azad and Manish Tewari were missing.

Also, barring Ambika Soni and Pratap Singh Bajwa from Punjab, many party MPs have not got a place in it. Whereas, the name of former Speaker of Lok Sabha Meira Kumar is included in lieu of the Dalit vote bank. At the same time, the name of Delhi Mahila Congress President Amrita Dhawan is also surprising.

Along with this, four big names of Haryana, Bhupinder Hooda, Randeep Surjewala, Deepender Hooda, and Kumari Selja have been given place.

Questions have been raised that, instead of several MPs from Punjab, four leaders from Haryana were included, when the Sutlej-Yamuna Link (SYL) dispute of Punjab-Haryana is not a secret anymore.

The biggest question that was raised is why Manish Tewari, a Hindu face who has won from a seat like Anandpur Sahib, he has been sidelined. There are around 40 per cent Hindus in the state.

Earlier, another Hindu face of the party, Sunil Jakhar, had expressed the pain of not being made the Chief Minister despite having the support of 42 MLAs, during change of guard after Captain Amarinder Singh stepped down in September last year. Jakhar, in a recent interview claimed he was bypassed because he is a Hindu. However, Jakhar has been given a place in the list of star campaigners for Punjab polls.

Punjab will go to the polls on February 20. The counting of votes will take place on March 10.

(With ANI inputs)

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Published Date: February 5, 2022 11:22 AM IST

Updated Date: February 5, 2022 11:26 AM IST