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Thursday, October 21, 2021

channi: Astrology to academics, know Punjab CM-designate Charanjit Singh Channi | Chandigarh News


CHANDIGARH:Known for his academic pursuits and belief in astrology, Charanjit Singh Channi is someone who manages to hit the headlines even without the flamboyance of a typical politician.
Apart from emerging as a strong detractor of Capt Amarinder Singh since April this year, Channi has also been dogged by a series of controversies during his stint as the technical education minister since 2017. He had also attended what is believed to be the first ‘secret meeting’ between Navjot Singh Sidhu and other dissident leaders like Sukhjinder Singh Randhawa, marking the start of regrouping in the Punjab Congress.
A relatively young leader and a Dalit Sikh, Channi was picked by the party high command for the post of leader of opposition (LoP) in 2015 to replace Sunil Jakhar during the previous Akali regime.
Those close to Channi say that he was not too happy with the technical education portfolio in Amarinder’s cabinet as it is usually an add-on with major departments. He has also been vocal about the need to resolve the pending issues of the SC community in the state.
During the initial period of the Congress regime, Channi was in the spotlight for his strong belief in astrology, and it is said that on the advice of an astrologer to have an eastfacing entry to his house, he illegally constructed a road from a park outside his official residence in Sector 2, Chandigarh. The move was objected to by the Chandigarh administration. Later, on his astrologer’s advice, Channi rode an elephant in the lawns of his house in Kharar.
The Chamkaur Sahib MLA has a host of degrees. After studying law, in 2007, he enrolled in an MBA programme at the Punjab Technical University. He also completed masters in political science in 2009 and then decided to get a doctorate on the history of the Indian National Congress. He even took the entrance test to start his PhD but failed to clear. However, later Panjab University authorities allegedly relaxed norms and slashed passing marks for SC/ST students.
In 2018, Channi was in the news for flipping a coin to decide on the right candidate, out of two nominees, for the post of a lecturer in a polytechnic institute.
A government spokesperson had sought to clarify that the minister’s intention was to allot the posts in a transparent manner after a video clip of his “toss” act went viral on social media.
‘Inappropriate texts’ to woman officer
Channi had also hit the headlines with an alleged #MeToo case after he was accused of sending inappropriate text message to a woman IAS officer in 2018. The officer never filed a complaint and it was claimed that the issue was resolved. But the issue had resurfaced when the Punjab Women’s Commission sent notice to the state government asking for its response to the allegation.





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