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Does the Change of Guard in Punjab Signal a Congress Party Makeover?

In a surprise pick, Congress chose Dalit Sikh Charanjit Singh Channi as the new Punjab Chief Minister.

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<div class="paragraphs"><p>The Big Story Podcast on New Punjab Chief Minister Charanjit Singh Channi and Congress party's future. Image used for representation only.</p></div>
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The political corridors in Punjab were bustling over the last two days, with the resignation of one of its oldest guards Captain Amarinder Singh on 18 September and, just 24 hours later, the surprise pick of Dalit Sikh Charanjit Singh Channi as the new chief minister.

The Captain’s resignation comes after months of infighting, public insults and bitter jabs between him and his political arch-rival Navjot Singh Sidhu, who had been gunning for the Captain’s ouster for the better part of this year.

However, the final straw towards the Captain’s resignation fell after a faction of MLAs wrote a letter to the Congress high command, voicing a change in leadership and a lack of confidence in him, resulting in the former CM’s public statement that he “feels humiliated” and resigning from his post.

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The change in guard in Punjab also comes just four months before the state heads to polls. So what are the tasks ahead the new CM? Will he be able to bring the divided party together? What lies next for Amarinder Singh and most importantly, is this signalling a change in the functioning of the Grand Old Party?

To analyse these questions, for this episode, we spoke with Aditya Menon, The Quint’s Political Editor.

(At The Quint, we are answerable only to our audience. Play an active role in shaping our journalism by becoming a member. Because the truth is worth it.)

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