Will be powerful voice of Amritsar in Delhi: Jaitley
BJP leader Arun Jaitley faces a tough electoral battle in his maiden bid to enter Lok Sabha from Amritsar but is unfazed by his "reluctant" heavyweight opponent Capt Amarinder Singh as he claims the groundswell against Congress "adds to my confidence".
New Delhi: BJP leader Arun Jaitley faces a tough electoral battle in his maiden bid to enter Lok Sabha from Amritsar but is unfazed by his "reluctant" heavyweight opponent Capt Amarinder Singh as he claims the groundswell against Congress "adds to my confidence".
He dismisses criticism of his being an "outsider" saying Amritsar is one of the most hospitable cities in India and an Amritsari who goes to Delhi for work cannot be given that tag. He wants to be the powerful voice of the holy city in Delhi.
Jaitley also rejects any anti-incumbency against him in view of the complaints against his party colleague and sitting MP Navjot Singh Sidhu, who is out of the contest this time due to problems with ally Akali Dal.
Jaitley has some new plans for Amritsar, which has links to his grandmother, like opening of the Indo-Pak border trade, converting Amritsar as a tourism hub and Punjab as a whole as an educational and industrial centre.
"Amritsar is looking for a powerful voice at the Centre so that it can get its dues. It is with that hope that people look at me. And it is that factor singularly which gives me an advantage," he claims.
The 61-year-old eminent lawyer from Delhi says he is enjoying the electoral battle because he is in the driver`s seat this time even though he is not new to elections.
"It is for the Congress to decide who they want to field. To field a reluctant man is never a safe political strategy," he told PTI in an interview, rejecting any suggestion that he may not have bargained for a tough fight that the Amritsar battle has turned out to be.
"He (Amarinder) belongs to a party which has committed large number of improprieties and atrocities against the Sikhs. He can`t distance himself from that.