Punjab Congress president Amarinder Singh Sunday said that activities of party rebels were helping the Akali Dal-Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government in the state.
Addressing the media at Patti town in Tarn Taran district, 270 km from here, Sunday as he began a tour of assembly constituencies, Amarinder Singh said that the activities of rebel Congress leaders would help the Akali Dal-BJP combine at a time when the Congress had launched an action programme against the government.
His statement came just a day after some rebel legislators and other Congress leaders met here and decided to form a committee to send a report on the position of the Punjab Congress to the Congress high command.
The move by the Congress rebels was seen as a renewed attempt by them for ousting Amarinder Singh as the state Congress chief in wake of the series of electoral defeats faced by the party recently, including the January assembly election.
Replying to a question whether the rebels were doing it at the behest of the government, Amarinder said: "I really do not know at whose behest they were doing it, but their activities are certainly helping the government."
Replying to allegations that he was not accessible, he asked: "How come they (rebels) realised after the elections only that I was inaccessible and not during the last 14 years that I have been at the forefront of the Punjab Congress holding various positions like that of the chief minister, PCC chief and the chairman of the campaign committee?"
He said that he was not contemplating any action against the rebels, adding that the Congress high command was seized of the matter.
Amarinder asserted that the Congress party was united and there was no change in the enthusiasm among party workers.
He said that he had appealed to other political parties in Punjab to join hands against the anti-people policies of the Punjab government.
The ruling Akali Dal reacted immediately to Amarinder's statement saying that he had becoming "paranoid".
Ridiculing his statement, Akali Dal treasurer N.K. Sharma said that "the defeat-struck Amarinder Singh was so paranoid of Akali Dal-BJP combine that he sees their hand everywhere".
He said that Amarinder had failed to carry along his party with him and he was trying to deflect his failure to the Akali Dal to save his own post.
"He is so paranoid of the Akali Dal that he is hallucinating about presence of ruling party even in his dreams," Sharma added.