Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) candidate Sucha Singh Chhotepur is confident of taking away this Lok Sabha seat from under two giants, who by his reading have dwarfed in popularity.
Addressing party workers here on Thursday, he projected his rivals, Partap Singh Bajwa of the Congress and film actor Vinod Khanna of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), as bad performers. "Three-time Gurdaspur MP Khanna built only one bridge in the district, while sitting MP Bajwa failed to bring any development project to the constituency," said Chhotepur.
The candidate said he banked upon the AAP's more than 70,000 district activists, including youth, retired community and poor people. "If elected," he said, "I will change the face of Gurdaspur by overall development. Bajwa is no challenge and the voters dislike Khanna's aristocratic lifestyle."
"The AAP is a good alternative to the Congress and the BJP," said the candidate. AAP convener Arvind Kejriwal had provided the nation with a platform for change in corrupt national politics, said Chhotepur, who was twice legislator from Dhariwal (as Shiromani Akali Dal candidate in 1985 and independent nominee in 2002) and twice the defeated independent contender (from Dhariwal in 2007 and Qadian in 2012).
He accused Punjab's ruling Akali-BJP alliance of magnifying the state's poverty, unemployment, corruption, and drug addiction by its apathy. Recalling his last visit to the constituency's Narot Jaimal Singh area, he reported no roads in most parts of that block. "It seemed it wasn't a part of India in the matter of development," he said.
He also met the AAP workers at Pathankot, Dhariwal, Dinanagar, and Batala.