Millennium Post (Kolkata)

BJP to go solo in Punjab, stage set for 4-cornered fight for 13 LS seats


The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) will go solo in the election for the 13 Lok Sabha seats in the border state of Punjab, state party chief Sunil Jakhar said in a video message on Tuesday.

His announceme­nt puts a lid on the speculatio­n on a possible tie-up with the Shiromani Akali Dal, former ally of the BJP.

With the BJP deciding to contest the coming Lok Sabha elections on its own in Punjab, the stage is set for a multi-cornered electoral tussle as the ruling Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) has already made known its decision that it will put up candidates on all the 13 Lok Sabha seats. AAP and the Congress, both key constituen­ts of the opposition INDIA alliance, are not entering into a tie-up in Punjab as the two parties have done in Gujarat and Delhi.

Polling for the 13 Lok Sabha seats in Punjab will be held on June 1, the last phase of the seven-phase elections.

“The BJP is going to contest the Lok Sabha elections alone,” Punjab BJP chief Sunil Jakhar said in a video message posted on X.

This decision was taken based on the feedback of people, party workers and leaders. The decision has been taken for the future of Punjab and the betterment of the youth, farmers, traders, labourers and the downtrodde­n, he said.

He exuded confidence that the people of Punjab will further strengthen the BJP by voting for it in large numbers on June 1.

The developmen­t comes almost a week after senior BJP leader and Union Home Minister Amit Shah, when asked about the possibilit­y of a tie-up with

the SAD, had said, “Negotiatio­ns are on. We want all NDA parties to come together.”

SAD chief Sukhbir Singh Badal, however, had remained evasive on the issue of talks with the BJP. The SAD had walked out of the BJP-led NDA in September 2020 over the farmers' agitation against farm laws which were repealed by the Centre later.

The two parties had formed an alliance in 1996 and had been fighting elections together. In 2019, they won two Lok Sabha seats each in Punjab.

Jakhar said, “The work done by the BJP for Punjab under the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi is not hidden from anyone.”

Each grain of farmers' crops was procured at minimum support price in the last 10 years and farmers received payments in their bank accounts within a week, he claimed.

The Kartarpur corridor, which people had been demanding for a long time to visit the Kartarpur gurdwara, was opened during the BJP government's tenure.

The Kartarpur corridor links Gurdwara Darbar Sahib in Pakistan, the final resting place of Sikhism founder Guru Nanak Dev, to Dera Baba Nanak shrine in Gurdaspur district.

The BJP was said to be demanding five to six of the 13 Lok Sabha seats in Punjab but the Akalis did not agree.

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