The Punjab Congress unit has been making a "fervent request" to Manmohan Singh, telling him that Punjabis would be delighted if he contested the national election from Amritsar, home to the holiest Sikh shrine Golden Temple. However, as per the sources, the former prime minister is not willing to contest from Amritsar.
The sources further added that Dr. Singh has not responded positively to the request made by the party. This is not the first time Manmohan Singh has been offered the constituency; in the 2009 national election, he declined the request on account of ill health.
Earlier, Punjab Chief Minister Capt Amarinder Singh, state affairs in-charge Asha Kumari and Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee (PPCC) president Sunil Kumar Jakhar met former Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh at his residence in New Delhi and urged him to contest the Lok Sabha elections from Amritsar.
Manmohan Singh has been a Rajya Sabha member since 1991 from Assam and his term ends on June 14. He has never won Lok Sabha elections; in 1999, he was the Congress candidate from South Delhi, one of the seven parliamentary seats in the capital, but lost to the BJP's VK Malhotra.
Meanwhile, Amarinder Singh has exuded confidence that the Congress will win all 13 Lok Sabha constituencies in the state, after he discussed the party's probable candidates on the seats at a meeting of its screening committee on Sunday. The Punjab Congress is fully geared to fight the Lok Sabha election, Amarinder Singh said, making it apparent that the party will not ally with anyone in the state.
The chief minister said the Punjab government would take all steps to ensure free and fair polls, in a secure environment. The police and civil administration would work in tandem to enable peaceful election in the state, he added.