The process of filing nominations for the elections to 10 zones of zila parishad and 50 zones for block samitis was completed on Tuesday. A total of 44 nominations for 10 seats of zila parishad besides 121 nominations for Faridkot block and 102 for Kotkapura block for the block samiti polls have been filed.
As many as 34 nominations for the zila parishad and 144 for block samitis were received on the last day on Tuesday.
Congress leader Kushaldeep Dhillon, Jaitu Congress MLA Joginder Singh and Faridkot SAD MLA Deep Malhotra led the contestants and party workers to file the nominations.
Dhillon led the Congress contestants at Kotkapura to file the nominations for block samitis. Dhillon alleged that the Congress nominees were not at first allowed to enter the premises of the tehsil complex. "First, we were not allowed to enter the tehsil complex; then the tehsildar closed the door of the office to delay the filing of our papers, while the ruling alliance had a large number of their supporters inside," alleged Dhillon.
"In Faridkot, while filing nominations for the zila parishad election in the office of the additional deputy commissioner, someone from the ruling alliance tried to snatch the nomination papers from our candidate inside the office of the returning officer," Dhillon alleged.
"We also fear that some of our nominations might be misplaced or cancelled on trivial grounds," he said. "We have completed filing our nominations for all zila parishad and block samitis. Kotkapura MLA Mantar Singh Brar has tried to influence the process as he is the chief parliamentary secretary, panchayats," Dhillon alleged.
Brar, when contacted, said, "I did not visit any office on Tuesday as I am the chief parliamentary secretary of the same department. We had filed all our nominations for block samitis on Monday while nominations for the zila parishad were filed on Tuesday. I did not visit any office at Faridkot. We will ensure a fair and peaceful election. All allegations levelled against me are baseless."
The Congress leaders also alleged that the BDPOs concerned did not provide them the opportunity of depositing the chulha tax, which should be deposited mandatorily before submitting the nomination papers, and they had to file the nominations by giving affidavits.
Besides the two main political parties -- SAD and Congress -- the CPI has also fielded its candidates for the zila parishad and block samitis. "The CPI has fielded four candidates for the zila parishad elections from Sandhawan, Sadak, Mandwala and Dhilwan Kalan zones and 19 for block samitis," claimed Pawanpreet Singh, district secretary of the CPI from Faridkot.
Deputy commissioner Ravi Bhagat said, "No nominations will be cancelled merely on the basis of depositing of the chulha tax. The candidates were required to submit only self declarations about the 'no dues' and it is up to us to verify the details. There would be no problem of any kind. However, I have not received any complaints."
Prominent SAD contestants
Kultar Singh Brar, younger brother of Kotkapura MLA Mantar Singh Brar, is contesting the zila parishad poll from Waradaraka zone, and Amarjeet Kaur, who had just joined SAD leaving the PPP, will contest for the zila parishad from Rori Kapura zone.