The Jalandhar Lok Sabha byelection saw a four-corner contest between the BJP, Congress, SAD, and the incumbent AAP. Vote counting for that election started today.
According to authorities, counting started at 8 am.
In and around the counting centers set up at the Director Land Records and Sports College Complex office on Kapurthala Road, a strict security setup has been put in place.
Among the 19 contenders, Sushil Rinku of the AAP, Karamjit Kaur Chaudhary of the Congress, Inder Iqbal Singh Atwal of the BJP, and Sukhwinder Kumar Sukhi of the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) stand out.
54.70% of eligible voters participated in the byelection, which was place on May 10, according to the authorities. It was much lower than the 63.04 percent seen in the Lok Sabha elections of 2019.
Santokh Singh Chaudhary, a Congressman, had left the Jalandhar seat vacant when he passed away in January.
Who took the field?
Atwal switched from the SAD to the BJP, while former MLA Rinku ran for the AAP after leaving the Congress. Sukhwinder Kumar Sukhi, a two-term Banga MLA who was supported by the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP), was put up by the SAD, whereas Karamjit Kaur Chaudhary, Chaudhary's wife, was put forward by the Congress.
By winning the byelection, the governing AAP hopes to announce its election to the Lok Sabha. A victory would be encouraging for the party, which suffered a crushing defeat in the Sangrur Lok Sabha byelection barely three months after sweeping to power in Punjab in March 2022.
anything about bypolls
The Bhagwant Mann-led government has been promoting its initiatives to offer free electricity and jobs to young people, regularize the services of contract workers, take action against corruption, and open mohalla clinics, among others. The bypoll is also seen as a test of the government's performance over the past year.
On the other side, the Congress wants to keep Jalandhar, which has been a longstanding bastion for the party and where it hasn't lost an election since 1999.
After suffering reverses in the assembly election, the stakes are also quite high for the Bharatiya Janata Party and the SAD. Before the SAD severed links in 2020 over the since-repealed agricultural policies, the two parties were partners in Punjab.