Taking the slogan of Shaheed Bhagat Singh from a history class room into the electoral politics did not help the People's Party of Punjab (PPP) as its sanjha morcha drew a blank in the state assembly polls.
To double the debacle for the party founder Manpreet Singh Badal, he lost both Gidderbaha and Maur at third position, while his father Gurdas Badal forfeited security in Lambi along with many candidates who were debutant in this newly emerged political force in Punjab.
But the rebel Badal made a statement in the evening after the Tuesday's elections outcome- the PPP is not disheartened and is committed to move on with an eye on the 2014 Lok Sabha elections.
"I humbly accept the verdict of the people. We may not have notched up the numbers in the assembly tally, but nevertheless, the PPP is not disheartened," he stated.
The analysis, he said, would be done on the basis of the detailed party-wise results. He said he was satisfied that many of the PPP candidates exhibited a keen contest.
The Communist Party of India (CPI), a strong ally of the PPP in the form of sanjha morcha, also lost all the 14 seats it contested.The PPP had contested 92 and the CPM 9 seats of the total 115 seats.
Senior CPI leader Dr Joginder Dayal told HT that the party's alliance with the PPP would continue as a "constructive democratic opposition" in the state.
Besides Manpreet, eight of the PPP candidates made a face saving mark as they were placed third along with many others.
They included Ranjit Kaur Bhatti in Budhlada (29,385 votes), Didar Singh Bhatti in Fatehgarh Sahib (32,065), Bhagwant Mann in Lehra (26,136), Amardeep Brar in Ropar (25,042), Jagmeet Singh in Amloh (25,538), Jeet Singh Chanduraian in Amargarh (23,347), Gurpreet Bhatti in Khanna (23,370) and Ran Singh in Dirba (31,000 votes).
Mera rang de basanti chola… has been the ring tone of the PPP cadres led by the rebel Manpreet Badal, who introduced the bright yellow colour as the symbol of revolutionary Shaheed Bhagat Singh for his party.
The tempers were so high that Bhagwant Mann even led the PPP cadres to the Anna Hazare's campaign against corruption in Delhi, all clad in yellow turbans.
The PPP's campaign caught the attention of the state's electorate with Bhagwant Mann and others coming out with a CD with songs seeking the people's mandate in the name of 'Punjab Bachao' slogan and dig at the "corrupt politicians".
The youth was understood to have been their high hope in gaining the mandate that they did not get to grab a single seat.