Punjab Municipal Election Result 2021: Congress wins six of seven municipal corporations; BJP loses ground in Pathankot
Congress needs victories in six more wards to control the municipal corporation. The Congress won 20 of 50 municipal wards in Moga, the Shiromani Akali Dal 15, the Aam Aadmi Party 4, the Bharatiya Janata Party one and Independents won 10 wards
The ruling Indian National Congress emerged as the largest party in Punjab civic body polls, winning six of the seven municipal corporations, results for which were announced on Wednesday.
The result has come as a boost for the ruling Congress, which has been backing the protest against the BJP-led Centre's three farm laws by farmers, a majority of them from Punjab and Haryana.
The elections were seen as a referendum against the Centre's farm laws, and the municipal corporation results have come in favour of the Congress.
The Congress won in Bathinda, Hoshiarpur, Kapurthala, Abohar, Batala, and Pathankot municipal corporations in the civic polls held against the backdrop of the farmers' agitation.
According to a report in The Indian Express, "Congress won 49 out of 50 seats in Abohar, 43 in Bathinda, 41 in Hoshiarpur and 43 in Kapurthala. It also made massive inroads into the BJP-dominated Pathankot, bagging 37 out of 50 seats. It did well in Batala too, with 35 seats."
The party is set to election a Congress mayor for the first time in 53 years, Congress leader Manpreet Singh Badal tweeted on Wednesday.
History has been made today!
Bathinda will get a Congress Mayor for the 1st time in 53 years!
Thank you to ALL Bathinda residents.
Congratulations to the people of Bathinda for a spectacular victory.
Kudos to all Congress candidates and workers, who toiled for this day. pic.twitter.com/Xvczq5MjfU
— Manpreet Singh Badal (@MSBADAL) February 17, 2021
The Congress' win in Bathinda is also crucial as SAD leader Harsimrat Kaur Badal is MP from Bathinda Lok Sabha constituency, reported Hindustan Times. The Bathinda MP had quit the Narendra Modi Cabinet last year in protest against the Centre's farm laws. Manpreet Singh Badal is MLA from Bathinda. In Moga, where no political party has scored a majority, the support of Independent candidates could be crucial.
According to PTI, Congress needs victories in six more wards to control the seventh municipal corporation. The Congress won 20 of the 50 municipal wards in Moga, the Shiromani Akali Dal 15, the Aam Aadmi Party 4, the Bharatiya Janata Party one and Independents won 10 wards. The counting for the SAS Nagar municipal corporation will take place Thursday as repolling was held today at two booths. The results for 109 municipal councils and Nagar Panchayats are also coming in.
However, according to a report in NDTV, Congress was leading in them as well. A report in News18 said that Congress has won the Faridkot municipal council, bagging 16 of the 25 wards while SAD won seven wards and AAP won only one ward. An Independent candidate won one ward as well.
Hindustan Times reported that Congress swept the civic body elections in the Majha region, comprising Amritsar, Gurdaspur, Pathankot and Taran districts, by winning 13 of the 16 municipalities. SAD won three civic bodies in the region, namely the Majitha Nagar Council, Qadian Nagar Council and Ajnala Nagar Panchayat.
As per the latest trends available at 6.30 pm, Congress was leading or had won in 65 municipal councils/nagar panchayats, whereas SAD had won or was leading in five municipal councils/nagar panchayats, while others were leading or had won in 10 municipal councils/nagar panchayats. The Congress is also eyeing a win in the Assembly elections, which are just a year away.
Punjab Congress chief Sunil Jakhar said people have rejected the negative politics of parties like the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD), and the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP). "We contested on the development agenda. This victory will embolden our workers to work hard," Jakhar told reporters.
Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee President Sunil Jakhar Ji has announced #CaptainFor2022 campaign after the successful victory of Congress Party in the Local Bodies Elections. pic.twitter.com/dNlC4BaYrU — Punjab Congress (@INCPunjab) February 17, 2021
According to The Indian Express report "besides the Congress, Independents, too, fared very well in the civic body polls, however, AAP, which had launched a robust campaign, performed below expectations".
Punjab chief minister Amarinder Singh hailed the Congress' wins in the municipal corporations as 'spectacular victory', describing it as not just a validation of his government's development-oriented policies and programmes, but also a total rejection of the 'anti-people actions' of the major Opposition parties, namely SAD, AAP and BJP, The Times Of India reported.
The Punjab election campaign was marred by stray clashes between party workers with Opposition leaders alleging at some places that their candidates were being stopped from filing nomination papers.
The State Election Commission had ordered repolling at two booths for the SAS Nagar municipal corporation. Therefore, the counting for the entire civic body will take place on Thursday.
Altogether 9,222 candidates contested the polls to the eight municipal corporations and 109 municipal councils.
The Congress fielded 2,037 candidates, the SAD 1,569, the BJP 1,003, the AAP 1,606 and the BSP 160. As many as 2,832 were Independents. The BJP and the Akali Dal, which had walked out of the National Democratic Alliance last year over the contentious farm laws, fought separately.
Over 70 percent voting was recorded in the civic body elections on 14 February.
With inputs from PTI
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