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No Sidhu in sight as Jaitley campaigns in Amritsar
Published in The Saudi Gazette on 19 - 03 - 2014


AMRITSAR — Senior Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader Arun Jaitley began his election campaign on Tuesday in Amritsar. But what was interesting to note that Navjot Singh Sidhu, the party's 50-year-old parliamentarian from here, was forced out to make room for Jaitley, was conspicuous by his absence. Instead, Sidhu's wife, Navjot Kaur, a BJP lawmaker from Amritsar East, welcomed Jaitley this morning with party workers. Re-allocating the Amritsar seat was one of the BJP's major stress-points last week. Sidhu's had reportedly made it clear that he was not happy about being made to surrender the constituency he has represented in the Lok Sabha since 2004. On Saturday, when Jaitley was announced as the candidate from Amritsar, Sidhu said Jaitley was his “guru,'' and he would accept whatever the party decided, but made it clear that he would not contest the election from anywhere else. Two years ago, the BJP and its ally the Shiromani Akali Dal, defeated the Congress in the state election. “I have been in politics for a long time. I am grateful to the party for allowing me to serve the people of Amritsar, and Punjab,'' Jaitley, 61, told reporters as he was taken around the city on a truck.

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