With the strong wave in favor of the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) running across Punjab, many stalwarts of the state politics, including current and former chief ministers, bite the dust in the electoral battle for the Assembly polls.
In a major embarrassment for the Congress, incumbent CM, Charanjit Singh Channi lost both the Assembly seats, Chamkaur Sahib and Bhadaur, to little known AAP candidates by a margin of 7942 and 37,558 votes respectively.
This was Channi’s first election in Bhadaur but he had won the Chamkaur Sahib seat three consecutive times before this.
Channi’s predecessor Captain Amarinder Singh also faced a humiliating defeat from AAP’s greenhorn Ajit Pal Kohli with over 13,000 votes from his stronghold Patiala (Urban), the seat that he has won for four consecutive terms since 2002 when he first contested.
Five-time former CM, Parkash Singh Badal suffered defeat in Lambi constituency to a lightweight Congress candidate Gurmeet Singh Khudian by a margin of 11,396 votes.
Former Congress CM, Rajinder Kaur Bhattal lost the poll from Lehra constituency. She came third in the poll won by the AAP candidate.
Shiromani Akali Dal chief and former deputy CM, Sukhbir Singh Badal also lost the Assembly poll from Jalalabad constituency to AAP candidate by a margin of 21,228 votes.
In Amritsar East constituency, Punjab Congress chief Navjot Singh Sidhu also lost the poll to AAP’s Jeevan Jyot Kaur by a margin of 6750 votes.
The deputy CM in the Charanjit Singh Channi government, OP Soni also lost the poll from Amritsar Central to AAP’s Ajay Gupta by a margin of 14026 votes.
Most ministers in the Congress government also joined the loser candidates list. These include Razia Sultana in Malerkotla constituency, Sadhu Singh Dharamsot in Nabha (reserved) constituency, Randeep Singh Nabha in Amloh constituency and Manpreet Singh Badal in Bathinda constituency.