With Congress high command handing over the charge to Capt Amarinder Singh in Punjab, the poll bugle has already been sounded with Congressmen eyeing the party ticket kicking off the campaign for the upcoming 2017 Assembly elections.
The first go-getter to jump into the poll campaign mode from Amritsar is district Congress committee (rural) chief Gurjeet Singh Aujla, who is eyeing the party ticket from the Amritsar (South) constituency.
Aujla kicked off the campaign on Sunday after paying obeisance at the Shaheed Ganj gurdwara. He met the local party workers and residents in the constituency to bolster his chances for bagging the party’s ticket.
Pertinently, former MLA Jasbir Singh Dimpa was the Congress candidate from the constituency in 2012 Assembly elections and he was defeated by Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) candidate Inderbir Singh Bolaria.
Though it is too early for the Congress party to allot tickets but taking no chances, Aujla has begun the power game to show that he was very much interested in contesting the election from the constituency.
Talking to HT, Aujla said, “Yes, I have begun active campaigning as I am trying to bag the party’s ticket from the Amritsar (South) constituency. I paid obeisance at the Shaheed Ganj gurdwara and assured the residents that I will take up their issues.”
While campaigning in the constituency, Aujla said, “It is unfortunate that the Akali Dal has done precious little for the constituency in the past nine years. People here are forced to live in poor civic conditions but the government has not woken up to this serious issue.”
On a question that in 2012, Jasbir Singh Dimpa was the party candidate from the constituency and competition being faced from other contenders, Aujla said, “I tried for the party ticket in 2012 also but it was given to Dimpa. I have jumped in the race again this time as I have been working in this constituency.”
Notably, Aujla, who was a Congress councillor in the past, has been raising issues at the party-level continuously after becoming the district Congress committee (rural) chief.
He actively campaigned with Capt Amarinder Singh during his Amritsar Lok Sabha poll campaign in 2014 as well.
In the Amritsar (South) constituency, a lot of tussle is witnessed between the leaders of the SAD too, as many have begun active campaigning ever since sitting MLA Inderbir Singh Bolaria fell out of favour with the party leadership.
Bolaria, who had demanded shifting of the garbage dump from his constituency and had gone against the wish of the party chief Sukhbir Singh Badal on this issue, was removed from the post of Youth Akali Dal Majha zone chief on Saturday.