With the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) managing to win just two assembly seats out of nine in the parliamentary segment represented by Union minter for food processing industries Harsimrat Kaur Badal, the assembly election results have come as a shocker for her.
Harsimrat had campaigned extensively in the assembly segments under her Lok Sabha constituency in the run-up to the assembly polls. She had trudged village after village laying foundation stones or inaugurating the development projects to woo voters in favour of her party. Her extensive campaigning at the village level was also being seen as an exercise for 2019 Lok Sabha elections.
She had a special focus on the Bathinda-Urban assembly seat to ensure the defeat of her estranged brother-in-law Manpreet Singh Badal, who won by a margin of over 18, 000 votes. However, in an embarrassment for the SAD, its candidate Sarup Chand Singla remained third as Aam Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) candidate Deepak Bansal came second. The SAD-BJP combine had made claims of ushering in unprecedented development in the segment.
In the 2012 assembly polls, the SAD had won six out of nine seats which included Bathind-Urban, Bathinda-Rural, Maur, Mansa, Budhlada and Lambi seats. The number has gone to seven after the SAD won Talwandi Sabo seat in teh bypoll in August 2014. However, the party could win only two seats this time that included Lambi in Muktsar district, which is part of the Bathinda Lok Sabha seat, and Sardulgarh in Mansa. From Lambi, outgoing chief minister and her father-in-law Parkash Singh Badal won while in Sardulgarh Dilraj Singh Bhunder.
Meanwhile, the Congress won two seats in the parliamentary segment compared to three in 2012, which included Bathinda-Urban and Bhucho. In 2012, the Congress had won Bhucho, Talwandi Sabo and Sardulgarh seats.
The AAP has major gain in the segment by winning five assembly seats in this Lok Sabha segment including Talwandi Sabo, Maur, Bathinda-Rural, Mansa and Budhlada. The AAP’s Jagdev Singh Kamalu and Baljinder Kaur defeated the SAD’s big faces Janmeja Singh Sekhon and Jeetmohinder Singh Sidhu respectively.