Miscellaneous candidate list to spice up Punjab polls

Miscellaneous candidate list to spice up Punjab polls

Around two dozen namesake candidates, three Arjuna awardees, a cobbler, two comedians, a person of the third sex, a cabbie and a resident of Bellary in Karnataka are all candidates in the upcoming elections in Punjab, spicing up the competition.

Durga Prasad (50) of Bellary is eyeing the Amritsar Lok Sabha seat, election for which will be held on the same day as the Assembly election in the constituency.

Prasad has promised to wipe out drugs from Punjab. An engineering graduate with Rs 10,000 in his bank account, Prasad is the founder of the Challenger Party and is a resident of Dharamshala.

He has a few supporters and his campaign begins in the morning, as he meets and talks to people on roads and in markets.

A 75-year-old cobbler from Hoshiarpur, O P Jakhu, who said he is in poll fray for the 19th time, said that if a “chaiwala” can be the prime minister, a cobbler can become at least an MLA.

He spent most of his savings— Rs 5,200 — on filing his nomination. As a candidate, he seeks a hearing from his clients as he polishes and repairs their shoes near the clock tower in his constituency.

Three former sportsmen, honoured with the prestigious Arjuna award, are in the poll fray. Former hockey captain Pargat Singh of the Congress, and wrestling champion Kartar Singh and former basketball captain S S Cheema, both AAP candidates, will contest the upcoming elections.

The BSP has reposed trust on Mumtaz (49), a person of the third sex from the Bhucho Mandi Assembly, with a reported balance of Rs 6 lakh in bank account. Aam Aadmi Party’s (AAP) lead players in the poll fray are two comic artistes. Comedian and MP Bhagwant Mann will take on deputy chief minister Sukhbir Singh Badal on the latter’s turf.

Comedian Gurpreet Guggi, who also featured in comic roles in a few Bollywood flicks — including the Akshay Kumar-starrer ‘Khiladi 786’— is making his political debut. AAP has fielded a cab driver, D S Tong, who uses his taxi to canvass for the elections.

Also, candidates of the major parties are in a fix thanks to the nearly two dozen namesake candidates who are contesting the elections.
The Congress has to deal with 13 such ‘namesakes’ , while AAP has to deal with nine.

The Election Commission’s decision to paste photographs of all the candidates on voting machines has come as a solace to the two parties.
DH News Service

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