Amarinder Singh turns to Prashant Kishor again and gives him ministerial rank


Poll master strategist Prashant Kishor played a big role in the victory of Congress in the Punjab in the 2017 polls (F


Four years after helping Congress take power in the Punjab with a big victory in the Assembly elections, Prashant Kishor returned to the state, signing as “senior advisor” to Chief Minister Amarinder Singh, who tweeted to say that the two would “work for the betterment of the people of Punjab”.

“Happy to share that Prashant Kishor has joined me as a senior advisor. We look forward to working together for the betterment of the people of Punjab! Mr. Singh tweeted on Monday.

Mr Kishor told NDTV that the offer had been on the table for a year and that Amarinder Singh was “like family”. “I can’t say ‘no’ to him …” said Mr Kishor.

The chief minister’s office tweeted shortly after, claiming Mr. Kishor would be awarded the rank of minister (with associated benefits) and “token Re 1 fees only”.

The Punjab is expected to hold Assembly elections in early 2022.

Congress came to power in 2017 after winning 77 of the 117 seats on offer; the victory was a significant increase from 2012, when she won 46 and was beaten by the Akali Dal-BJP alliance.

Mr. Kishor and his IPAC, or Indian Political Action Committee, played a big part in this victory, creating a number of campaign skits that struck a chord with voters, especially “Coffee with the captain (Amarinder Singh) ‘to attract younger voters.

However, the victory in Punjab was preceded by a falling out with Congress in Uttar Pradesh; he resigned, apparently due to differences in strategy, at the end of 2016.

Congress appears to be in a strong position in the Punjab ahead of next year’s elections; the party made a clean slate of seven municipal corporations in the polls of local organizations held early last month.

The victory at Bathinda – an Akali Dal stronghold represented at Lok Sabha by former Union Minister Harsimrat Kaur Badal – was a highlight.


Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh tweeted to say Prashant Kishor had joined (File)

This is the first time in more than 50 years that Congress has controlled this municipal body. Mr Singh said the victories represented the Punjab’s rejection of the Akalis, BJP and the Aam Aadmi party.

Akali Dal attacked Amarinder Singh over Mr. Kishor’s appointment, accusing him of “sprinkling the wounds of Punjabis with salt by appointing”jumlabaz (who makes false promises) ‘Prashant Kishor.

In a statement, Akali Dal said Mr. Singh would have been better served thinking of the “1,500 farmers who committed suicide thinking that”jumla‘of the renunciation of the loan of Prashant Kishor “.

The reference was referring to a 2017 campaign pledge, in which Congress said farmers who complete a loan waiver form would have their loans canceled if he came to power.

Mr Singh will be aware of the challenge Akalis and BJP pose as the 2022 elections approach and hold, and he hopes Mr Kishor can replicate his largely successful record.

Now Mr. Kishor and his IPAC are hard at work in Bengal, where he helps Mamata Banerjee defuse a fierce BJP challenge with Assembly elections set to stand on a record eight-phase starting March 27.

He is also working with DMK leader MP Stalin in Tamil Nadu – where elections will be held on April 6 – where he also hopes to overthrow the BJP (which is in power with AIADMK).

Last year Mr Kishor signed on to help Nitish Kumar retain his post in the November polls (and was named the party’s number 2), but was kicked out after openly criticizing his stance on the citizenship law .

He has emerged as one of Mr. Kumar’s fiercest critics as the JDU flopped to give a power play to both ally BJP and Tejashwi Yadav’s Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD).

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