Charanjit Singh Channi through his letter to the Governor Punjab Shri Banwarilal Purohit, informed that in a meeting of the Congress Legislative Party held on September 19,2021, he was elected as the leader of the Congress Legislative Party in the Punjab Legislative Assembly.
Governor Punjab Shri Purohit congratulated him and invited him to take oath as the Chief Minister of Punjab on September 20, 2021 at Punjab Raj Bhawan at 11am.
Channi was accompanied by senior Congress leader Sh. Harish Rawat, PPCC President Sh. Navjot Sidhu, Cabinet Ministers Brahm Mohindra, Sukhjinder Randhawa, Tript Rajinder Singh Bajwa, Sukh Sarkaria and Smt Aruna Chaudhary.
Channi, who will be the first Dalit Chief Minister of Punjab, now holds the position of Technical Education Minister of Punjab. He is a three-time MLA from Chamkaur Sahib constituency.
“Heartfelt gratitude and thanks to the top leadership for appointing me Chief Minister of Punjab…I will always work for the welfare of the people and to give new energy and momentum to the sustainable development journey of the state,” the 49-year-old tweeted today following the announcement.
Channi was among the section of Punjab Congress MLAs who put pressure on the party high command for a change in leadership. Punjab cM Capt Amarinder Singh resigned eventually.
Previously, Mr Channi was the leader of opposition in the Punjab assembly from 2015 to 2016. He was made a minister in the Captain Amarinder Singh government in March 2017.
A #MeToo case is also pending against Mr Channi for allegedly sending an inappropriate text to a woman Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officer in 2018. The woman never filed a complaint and Mr Singh had then said the issue was “resolved”. The case resurfaced in May this year when the Punjab Women’s Commission sent notice to the state government asking for its response to the allegation.
Capt Amarinder’s reaction
“My best wishes to Charanjit Singh Channi. I hope he’s able to keep the border state of Punjab safe and protect our people from the growing security threat from across the border,” Mr Singh said in the message.
Mr Singh’s message was posted on Twitter by Raveen Thukral, his media advisor.
Referring to the possibility of Punjab Congress chief Navjot Singh Sidhu, his bete noir, being a contender to the Chief Minister’s post, Mr Singh had said, “For the sake of my country, I’ll oppose his (Navjot Singh Sidhu) name for Chief Minister of Punjab. It’s a matter of national security. Pakistan PM Imran Khan is his friend. Sidhu has a relation with Army chief Gen Qamar Javed Bajwa.”
In August, he had lashed out at one of Mr Sidhu’s aides for com