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EXCLUSIVE | Channi Will Lose from Both Seats, I'm Ready With Rangla Punjab Model: AAP’s CM Face Mann

By: Aman Sharma

CNN-News18

Last Updated: February 03, 2022, 12:01 IST

DHURI (SANGRUR)

AAP's CM face Bhagwant Mann campaigns in Dhuri. (News18)

AAP's CM face Bhagwant Mann campaigns in Dhuri. (News18)

Punjab elections 2022: CNN-News18 went on a campaign trail with Bhagwant Mann as he went from village-to-village in Dhuri, the assembly constituency from which Mann decided to contest after being declared the CM face of his party.

Punjab chief minister (CM) Charanjit Singh Channi is fighting the elections from two seats as he is scared, and he will lose from both Chamkaur Sahib and Bhadaur, Aam Aadmi Party’s CM face Bhagwant Mann told CNN-News18 in an exclusive interview in Dhuri on Wednesday.

“Meanwhile, I have a ‘Rangla Punjab’, a model full of joy and glory, ready, glimpses of which will be seen within three-four months of me becoming the CM,” he said.

CNN-News18 went on a campaign trail with Mann as he went from village-to-village in Dhuri, the assembly constituency from which Mann decided to contest after being declared the CM face of his party.

Taking a potshot at the Congress, he said, “The Congress was earlier doubting our poll on CM face. Now, they are saying they will conduct a poll for their CM face too. The Congress is slowly learning politics from us, which is good. Let the Congress make anyone their CM face, be it Charanjit Channi or Navjot Singh Sidhu. Their government will not come to power, so we have no problem,” Mann said.

He also raked up Congress leader Sunil Jakhar’s comment. “Jakhar said a majority of MLAs were in favour of giving the CM post to him, but Channi was made the CM.”

After Mann decided to contest from Dhuri, which falls in the parliamentary constituency of Sangrur, Channi also announced that he will fight from Bhadaur seat in Sangrur, besides Chamkaur Sahib. This is seen as Channi’s attempt to challenge Mann’s grip over Sangrur.

“Channi is perhaps scared that he will lose from Chamkaur Sahib, which is why he is fighting from two seats. The fact is he is losing from both Chamkaur Sahib and Bhadaur,” Mann said.

He dared Channi to cite the work done by him in 111 days of being the CM. “Let him tell if his any decision has been implemented. The Enforcement Directorate (ED) found Rs 11 crore in cash from Channi’s relatives and illegal property worth Rs 56 Crore. This is the result in just 111 days. Nobody knows how much the Congress has earned in 4.5 years,” Mann said.

Mann was confident that the AAP would win the Punjab elections. “The mood in Dhuri and all of Punjab is the same. Ask the people here, especially women who have come in such large numbers from villages in the interiors. This is an indication that a big change is coming in Punjab in these polls. Ask the people and you’ll know whose government is coming to power,” Mann told CNN-News18.

He said he had a ‘Rangla Punjab’ model for Punjab which will be full of joy, dance and smiles. “I don’t want to make it California, London or Paris, but bring back the old Punjab of bhangra, gidda, wrestling and joy. We will bring back industries to Punjab. Within three-four months of our government, you will start seeing glimpses of Rangla Punjab,” Mann said.

Dismissing the Congress’s charge that he was an alcoholic and not serious, he said, “Let the Congress try and win a seat in Delhi first.”

Mann said he had no advice for Navjot Singh Sidhu, if the Congress doesn’t make him the CM face, as “their government is not coming to power anyway”.

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Mann said his top priority would be to stop the migration of Punjab youth to foreign countries and check the consumption of drugs. “The only solution is producing jobs. Youth go abroad because they can’t get jobs here. Those who are not able to go fall prey to drugs. Have you ever heard of a person who has a job get addicted to drugs? We want to make our youth job-providers. Youngsters should get jobs as per their degrees. We have to stop the brain drain,” Mann told CNN-News18.

Even as CNN-News18 finally left Mann’s campaign trail in the evening, he had three-four more villages to visit. He kept regaling the crowd with his wit and sharp critique of the government, telling people that the loud beep in the EVMs after casting their votes in favour of AAP would actually be “the screams and cries of Congress and Akali Dal”.

After taking a swipe at Parkash Singh Badal for entering the poll arena at 94, he turned to women: “The jhaadu you use at home only cleans the verandah, nooks and corners of your house. But the jhaadu [you use] on February 20 will clean the dirt of the state of Punjab. Vote for change and for your children’s future.”

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first published:February 03, 2022, 07:30 IST
last updated:February 03, 2022, 12:01 IST