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Pakistan wanted Sidhu reinstated as Punjab minister: Ex-CM Amarinder Singh

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New Delhi, Jan 24: Punjab Lok Congress president Amarinder Singh on Monday claimed he had got a message from Pakistan to reinstate Navjot Singh Sidhu in his government stating that he was an old friend of their prime minister.

Pakistan wanted Sidhu reinstated as Punjab minister: Ex-CM Amarinder Singh

Singh, who left Congress after a bitter fallout with Sidhu, said he was told that Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan will be grateful if he retains Sidhu in the government.

"After I dropped Navjot Sidhu from my government, I got a message from Pakistan that he is an old friend of their prime minister and he would be grateful if you can keep him in the government. If he (Sidhu) doesn't work, then you can remove him," PTI quotes Singh as saying in a press conference at BJP headquarters.

Singh had dropped Sidhu from the Punjab government during his tenure as the state's chief minister and had uneasy relationship with the cricketer-turned-politician. In fact, he was against appointing him as the Punjab unit chief of the Congress.

On Sunday, he had alleged in Chandigarh that Sidhu has "no brains" and also claimed that he had advised Congress president Sonia Gandhi five years ago not to induct "this incompetent man" in the party.

Meanwhile, BJP chief JP Nadda on Tuesday announced that the party will contest in 65 seats, the Punjab Lok Congress on 37 seats and the SAD (Sanyukt) on 17 seats in the forthcoming Punjab assembly elections.

Polling in the single-phase Punjab assembly election will now take place on February 20.

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