New Delhi | Jagran News Desk: As the infighting among the Punjab Congress unit intensified with Navjot Singh Sidhu-backed faction demanding the removal of Chief Minister Amarinder Singh, Punjab Congress in-charge Harish Rawat on Wednesday said that the Punjab Congress Chief -- Navjot Singh Sidhu -- has to remove his advisors and if he fails to do so, the party will do the same.

The stern warning from Rawat came after fresh calls of rebellion against the Chief Minister after Amarinder Singh condemned the comments by Sidhu's advisors and called them 'ill-conceived and atrocious'.

"It is not this or that camp who objected (to those statements). The whole party and the state have objections too. The party has a line on Jammu and Kashmir -- that it is a part of India," Harish Rawat, the Congress in-charge of Punjab, said as quoted by NDTV.

Rawat further said, "These advisers were not appointed by the party. We have asked Sidhu to dismiss them. If Sidhu does not do that, I will. We do not want people who embarrass the party."

The fresh turmoil erupts as Pyare Lal and Malwinder Mali, who was appointed as advisors by Sidhu, grabbed the headlines with their comments on Pakistan and Kashmir. Malwainder Mali, one of Sidhu's advisors, in a Facebook post had said that both India and Pakistan were illegal occupants in Kashmir.

Earlier yesterday, Rawat had played down the rebellion against Captain Amarinder Singh and had said that the 2022 Punjab Assembly Elections will be contested under the leadership of Amarinder Singh. Rawat also said that the leaders who he met yesterday did not want the chief minister's removal but raised local issues which will be flagged to the party's top leadership.

"Issues come up as things progress and it depends on the local leaders how they address it. In this case, the government could not solve it, and so things escalated to this level," he added.

Asked if the matter will be sorted before next year's state elections, Rawat said, "There is no question of this issue not being solved because they (the MLAs) have said that they will accept the decision of the party leaders... These things happen in any dynamic party. We will settle this. We have a procedure".

Earlier this week, Tript Rajinder Singh Bajwa said that 23 party MLAs will meet Sonia Gandhi and will demand the removal of Amarinder Singh. "Captain should be replaced else the Congress won't survive... we will meet Sonia Gandhi over the issue," said Punjab minister Tript Rajinder Singh Bajwa on Tuesday.

Posted By: Talibuddin Khan