×
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT
In Punjab results, all eyes on two independents

In Punjab results, all eyes on two independents

The electoral breakup between the Shiromani Akali Dal and the Bharatiya Janata Party has proved suicidal for both parties, with the Congress taking advantage of a four-way fight

Follow Us :

Last Updated : 04 June 2024, 14:27 IST
Last Updated : 04 June 2024, 14:27 IST
Comments

The big story of the 2024 Lok Sabha polls in Punjab is the rise of radicalism yet again. Waris Punjab De chief Amritpal Singh, who is currently in jail in Assam under the National Security Act (NSA), is poised to win from the Khadoor Saheb seat, while Sarabjeet Singh Khalsa, the son of one of Indira Gandhi’s assassins, is winning from the Faridkot seat.

The electoral breakup between the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has proved suicidal for both parties with the Congress taking advantage of a four-way fight.

The results from Punjab proved the exit polls wrong, as the state decided to stick to the tradition of going against the flow and voting against the party ruling at the Centre. While going to press, the Congress is leading in seven of the 13 seats, followed by Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) at 3, and SAD at 1.

It appears evident from the results that the voter distinguishes between the ‘baddi’ vote and the ‘choti’ vote, which is why AAP is at the second spot in this election despite its landslide win in the 2022 assembly polls with 92 of the 117 seats. It has won about 26 per cent of the vote share this time — a huge boost from the ~7 per cent it won in 2019 — despite the series of setbacks its leadership in Delhi has been receiving; AAP convenor and Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal went back to jail on June 2.

Though it is unlikely to win even a single seat, the silver lining for the BJP is that its vote share has gone up this time.

The BJP is using the Faridkot and Khadoor Saheb results to attack the Bhagwant Mann government’s inability to keep radicals in check. The two candidates perhaps stopped short of seeking votes in the name of Khalistan in fear of being disqualified.

That said, some sections link Amritpal Singh to the Centre. The campaign of both Amritpal Singh and Sarabjeet Khalsa has been all about jobs for Punjab’s youth, the drug menace, Sikh prisoners, and the farmer’s demand for a minimum support price.

The irony was not lost that Punjab voted in favour of the son of Indira Gandhi’s assassin, and also voted in favour of the Congress on the same week the 40 anniversary of Operation Bluestar was observed. Former chief minister Charanjit Singh Channi’s landslide win from Jalandhar will not only rekindle his political career, but he will also be looked upon as the Congress’ Dalit face in Punjab.

For SAD, it’s down to the wire at Bhatinda where the party is fighting a prestige battle, pinning its hope on Harsimrat Kaur Badal. In the past, if SAD managed the rural and panthic votes, the BJP got the urban Hindus to vote for the NDA. SAD is getting ready for the 2027 assembly polls, and positioning itself as a party that broke away from the BJP-led NDA over the farmers’ issue. The party hopes to win sympathy and dividends in the long run.

The BJP will be happy if it can double its vote share, but if it is gaining votes in Patiala or Ludhiana, it is because of the candidates and not because of the party.

(Meetu Jain is a senior journalist. X: @meetujain.)

Disclaimer: The views expressed above are the author's own. They do not necessarily reflect the views of DH.

Track Lok Sabha Election results live | Check all constituency results here

Track Odisha Assembly poll results live | Check constituency results here

Track Andhra Pradesh Assembly poll results live | Check constituency results here

Lok Sabha Elections 2024 | Will it be Narendra Modi's 'Viksit Bharat' or Rahul Gandhi's I.N.D.I.A.? As the world's largest democracy votes to choose its future, track live news, in-depth opinions, and analyses only on Deccan Herald.

Assembly Elections 2024 | Don't miss out on our detailed coverage of the polls in Sikkim, Arunachal Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh, and Odisha. Subscribe and follow DH on Whatsapp, X, Facebook, YouTube, and Instagram to never miss out on anything.

ADVERTISEMENT

Follow us on :

Follow Us

ADVERTISEMENT
ADVERTISEMENT