Navjot Singh Sidhu, who quit the Rajya Sabha earlier this month and fired uninterrupted salvos at the Bharatiya Janata Party for asking him to remain away from Punjab, is likely to join the Aam Aadmi Party in the second week of August.
The 52-year-old former cricketer, who had a long innings with the BJP in Punjab, has alleged that the party had asked him to stay away from Punjab to serve ‘personal interests’.
Sources in the AAP said Sidhu will formally join the party next month, possibly in the second week of August.
He is likely to be inducted as a ‘star campaigner’ ahead of the assembly polls next year.
The AAP is giving a tough fight to the ruling BJP-Shiromani Akali Dal alliance and the Congress in Punjab, and is hoping to cash in on Sidhu’s popularity to bolster its chances in the state election.
AAP national convener and Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal has welcomed Sidhu’s decision to quit Rajya Sabha as ‘brave’ and has also called him a ‘nice’ man.
Sidhu, however, has not disclosed his plans yet.
Earlier this week, he parried queries during a media interaction on whether he would join the AAP, saying he will be standing wherever the interests of Punjab are served.
Sidhu has alleged he was told to remain away from Punjab to ‘serve personal interests’, apparently suggesting that the BJP was acting under ally SAD’s pressure.
Sidhu has had a running feud with the Akalis, who have accused him of ‘opportunists’. They have said that ‘fugitive’ leaders like Sidhu have no place in state politics and people will teach him a lesson.
But the BJP has maintained that Sidhu has not quit the party yet.