‘Aam Aadmi Avatar’ to combat AAP? Channi, Punjab Cabinet reach out to commoners

Express News Service

CHANDIGARH:  Punjab Chief Minister Charanjit Singh Channi and his cabinet colleagues are donning ‘Aam Aadmi avatar’ ahead of the polls in the northern state.  

This new ‘avatar’ also aims to dent the growing popularity of AAP.  On the first day after taking the oath of office, Channi said his government was of the poor, for the poor and with the poor.

Channi recently came to the aid of a blind old man for whom he instructed officials to ensure free treatment from a government hospital.

At Mandi Kalan village, he stopped his cavalcade to give ‘shagun’ to a newly-wed poor couple. Channi tasted the sweets offered by their families. He then conveyed his best wishes with folded hands.

Warring interacts with eldery citizensChanni didn’t stop at this. He visited the bereaved families of farmers who had ended lives due to overriding debts.

He had lunch at the house of one of the families. At a function in IK Gujral Punjab Technical University, he did an impromptu bhangra.

A few days ago, after returning home late at night, Channi saw a few visitors waiting for him outside his official residence.

The chief minister got out of his SUV, sat by the roadside and talked to them and sorted out their problems.

For becoming easily approachable, Channi has ordered to prune his security cover as there were around 1,000 police personnel deployed for security.

He also asked his ministers to keep their security at bare minimum. Last time when Channi he was in Delhi to meet the PM, he opted for economy class of a flight while returning home.

This visible change in the new Punjab Cabinet headed by Channi is in sharp contrast to that of his predecessor Amarinder Singh.

His own party workers had accused Amarinder of being inaccessible and running the government from a farmhouse.

Taking a leaf out of Channi’s book, Transport Minister Amarinder Singh Raja Warring twice travelled in the state-run transport buses. Warring also went to different bus stands.

To express his sense of solidarity with sanitation workers, he picked up garbage. 

Punjab Deputy Chief Minister-Cum-Home Minister Sukhjinder Singh Randhawa conducted a surprise check at Punjab Police Headquarters.

His aim was to ensure that employees and officers reached on time so that the public was not inconvenienced.

Reaching out to the people 

For providing easy access to sarpanches and municipal councillors in the Civil Secretariat, the government has decided to issue an entry card to them.