Punjab Politics

Election fever cathcing up in in Punjab with the announcement of candidates

April 08, 2019 09:12 PM

CHANDIGARH: The political fever in Punjab is rising fast  with the announcement of most of candidates for Lok Sabha election by the key parties. Punjab will go to poll in the last phase on May 19, electing 13 members of Lok Sabha.

In 2014, the SAD and the BJP together won six seats in Punjab. Out of these six, two were won by the BJP.  AAP won four seats and Congress three. However Congress won Gurdaspur seat in bye election after death of BJP MP Vinod Khanna.

The ruling Congress and Aam Aadmi Party(AAP) has taken the lead and announced almost all the candidates except for Bathinda.  The SAD and Congress are also waiting for each other to announce candidate from Bathinda.

The Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) has declared its candidates for eight out of 10 seats. The BJP has not announced any candidate for two seats it would contest in alliance with SAD. The SAD is holding announcement on crucial seats of Bathinda and Ferozepur. Sitting MP from Bathinda and Union minister Harsimrat Kaur Badal may contest from Bathinda or Ferozepur as she is not sure to win Bathinda.

BJP an alliance partner of (SAD which has to contest three seats of Amritsar, Gurdaspur and Hoshiarpur has not announced any candidate so far. BJP  had won two seats in the 2014 Lok Sabha poll but it lost Gurdaspur in by poll held after the death of MP and film star Vinod Khanna. BJP is expected to drop sitting Hoshiarpur MP and Union Minister   Vijay Sampla. It intends to field film stars from other two seats.

AAP has fielded its state president and sitting MP Bhagwant Mann from Sangrur where he will face former minister Parminder Singh Dhindsa son of former SAD secretary general Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa. It would be an interesting contest since Parminder was advised by father not to contest on SAD ticket. Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa had resigned from SAD and demanded resignation of SAD president Sukhbir Singh Badal. Congress is yet to make an announcement for this seat where Rajinder Kaur Bhattal or Kewal Singh Dhillon may be party candidate.

AAP has announced names of Nina Mittal fro Patiala who is a dedicated worker and president of trade wing of party. Harjinder Singh Kaka Sran, a farmer will be candidate from Ferozepur. Party has also fielded Jora Singh from Jalandhar, Bajlinder Singh Chaunda from Fatehgarh Sahib and Peter Masih Cheeda from Gurdaspur. Kuldeep Singh Dhaliwal will contest from Amritsar. He is in charge of party's Makha zone. Dr Ravjot Singh will be the candidate from Hoshiarpur. He is also a zone president and has unsuccessfully contested the last Assembly election. Narinder Singh Shergill will fight election from Anandpur Sahib. He is presently chairperson of finance committee of AAP.

SAD has announced other  names of Prem Singh Chandumajra from Anandpur Sahib, Former Deputy Speaker of Lok Sabha Charanjit Singh Atwal from Jalandhar, former SGPC president Bibi Jagir Kaur from Khadoor Sahib, Retired IAS officer Darbara Singh Guru has been nominated from Fatehgarh Sahib, Surjit Singh Rakhra is candidate from Patiala, Former Minister Gulzar Singh Ranike who hails from Attari in Amritsar district is named for Faridkot. He will face famous  Punjabi folk singer Mohammed Sadique who is sitting MLA from Bhadaur and Sadhu Singh sitting MP of AAP.

The Congress has announced names of Sunil Jakhar from Gurdaspur, Ravnit Singh Bittu from Ludhiana, Preneet Kaur from Patiala, Gurjit Singh Aujla sitting MP from Amritsar, Jasbir Singh Dimpa from Khadoor Sahib,  Chaudhary Santokh Singh from Jalandhar, Retired IAS Dr.Amar Singh from Fatehgd. Sahib who will face another retired IAS and his batch mate Darbara Singh Guru of SAD.  Raj Kumar Chhabewal is Congress nominee from Hoshiarpur.

Congress has also not announced its candidate from Anandpur Sahib and latest reports suggest that Congress may field Navjot Kaur Sidhu from this seat. Navjot Kaur Sidhu was earlier interested to get ticket from Chandigarh seat but she was no accomodated.

In the Grand Punjab Alliance the notable names are of Sukhpal Singh Khaira president of Punjabi Ekta Party who is contesting from Bathinda, Simrajit Singh Bains Lok Insaaf Party president from Ludhiana and sitting MP Dharamveer Gandhi from Patiala. Yet SAD(Taksali) a break away group of SAD has also fielded Gen J.J.Singh former army chief from Khadoor Sahib and former deputy speaker of Punjab Vidhan Sabha Bir Devinder Singh from Anandpur Sahib.

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