Punjab Congress chief to have four deputies

New Delhi, March 26 (IANS) Keen to strengthen the party in Punjab, Congress president Sonia Gandhi Tuesday appointed four regional deputies to the state unit’s new chief, Partap Singh Bajwa, said party sources.

“The Congress president has approved the appointment of four vice presidents in Punjab. They are Tarlochan Singh for Doaba, O.P. Soni for Majha, and Gurdeep Singh Kangar and Charanjit Singh Channi for Malwa,” said a statement from Congress general secretary Janardan Dwivedi here.
“They will be responsible for party organisation in their regions,” said the statement.
On March 5, Gandhi had appointed Bajwa, the MP from Gurdaspur, as the new chief of the Punjab unit, replacing Capt. Amarinder Singh.
The exit of Amarinder Singh, a former chief minister and scion of the erstwhile royal family of Patiala, came after the Congress lost the Moga assembly seat in February by-election.
In the Moga bypoll, held after its sitting legislator resigned and joined the Akali Dal, the Congress had to taste defeat on a seat traditionally held by it.
The Congress also lost two successive assembly elections – in 2007 and 2012 – when Amarinder was in the forefront.
While in 2007, he was the incumbent chief minister, in the January 2012 assembly elections, when everyone thought that the Congress would return to power, the party lost to the Shiromani Akali Dal-Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) alliance.