Prashant Kishor quits as Punjab CM's principal advisor

Prashant Kishor quits as Punjab CM's principal advisor; what next?

Kishor's move comes with assembly polls in Punjab less than a year away

Kishor had managed the Congress’ successful campaign in the 2017 polls. Credit: PTI File Photo

Poll strategist Prashant Kishor on Thursday resigned from his post of Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh's principal advisor, citing his "temporary break from active role in public life", a move that gave a new grist to the speculation over him being drafted in by the Congress to oversee its strategy and alliance.

"In view of my decision to take a temporary break from my active role in public life, I have not been able to take over the responsibilities as your Principal Advisor. Since I am yet to decide on my future course of action, I write to request you to kindly relieve me from this responsibility. I take this opportunity to thank you for considering me for this position," Kishor wrote to the Chief Minister on Thursday.

While Kishor said he is "yet to decide on his future course", there is already a strong buzz in Congress that Kishor's role could be very soon a reality.

Kishor had, in the past, planned Congress' poll strategy for Uttar Pradesh and Punjab in 2017 elections, failing utterly at one and making a big success in the other. Even after that, he remained in touch with Priyanka Gandhi and had a few meetings with the Congress leadership in the last two three months

This association was revealed only when he visited Rahul Gandhi's residence in the second week of July when he had a three-hour-long meeting with Sonia Gandhi, Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi.

Kishor is also learnt to have held a briefing for the party's senior leaders in Congress War Room at Rakabganj Road. Rahul Gandhi has spoken to a number of party leaders on the feasibility and possibility of inducting Kishor in the party.

Many in the party are, however, skeptical about whether Kishor, who had an unceremonious exit from JDU, will be able to survive the rough and tumble AICC politics.

Kishor's decision to kick his formal role with Punjab CM comes even as polls in the state are a year away. Also, it comes at a time when Amarinder's bete noire Navjot Singh Sidhu has become Punjab PCC chief.

Kishor has quit the post even though, as per the terms and conditions of his appointment, was to be co-terminus with Amarinder's tenure.

His exit is a recent development as Kishor had held confabulations with first-time MLAs of Congress in March this year. The meeting was seen as a feedback exercise in order to chalk Amarinder Singh's campaign strategy for the 2022 Assembly elections.