Navjot Sidhu – Star Batsman or Water Boy for AAP?
Sidhu wants to join #AAP and the party wants him too but there’s still no announcement. This delay is intriguing for Sidhu’s well-wishers and rivals alike.
#BJP clearly erred in nominating him for Rajya Sabha. But BJP probably had no other option as many of its own local leaders and Akali Dal were not favourably disposed towards the ex-cricketer. Sidhu always wanted to be Punjab chief minister and has been reported by Media for admitting that “it was his dream job”. BJP couldn’t have made him CM, even in an unlikely case of the ruling combine returning to power in 2017.
So Sidhu decided to hitch his dreams to AAP’s surging fortunes in Punjab. AAP is a relatively new political invention and Kejriwal does not really have a CM candidate in Punjab. Sidhu, a Jat Sikh, could be a great option for the AAP. So both Sidhu and AAP leaders alike were highly excited and optimistic on him joining the party when he first made the announcement to quit BJP.
However, as I mentioned in an earlier article, #Arvind Kejriwal is not able to make up his mind on which position he would like Sidhu to play. Elevating Sidhu in Punjab could seriously alienate many of AAP grassroots leaders and followers alike.
A senior AAP member told media “Sidhu was never a chief ministerial candidate for us. That was propaganda spread by our rivals in Punjab to derail the process. He has been in talks with the party for a long time now.”
Sidhu was a pillar of Indian cricket team for more than a decade till 1999. He always considered himself a star batsman and, more often than not, played like one.
Who can forget his memorable ODI knocks against arch-rivals Pakistan in the quarter final of the 1996 World Cup. Sidhu top scored for his team scoring 93 and was adjudged the player of the match for his winning contribution. He loves attention and gets it, whether on cricket ground, in campaign road shows or as a judge in popular comedy shows.
AAP clearly wants to encash his popularity and crowd pulling ability during rallies. Sidhu can also be an effective though maverick, media spokesman for AAP with his ‘Sidhuisms’. He can entertain large crowds for hours with his owns style of rustic wit. But for Sidhu, that’s like being a water boy in a test match.
Sidhu never liked being a twelfth man or water boy, not even when he was playing with the likes of Sachin Tendulkar, Sourav Ganguly, Azharuddin and Kapil Dev. He wanted to be a Star Batsman who would win the match for his team. He now wants to be CM, not a party jester.
Will Kejriwal oblige?