The trend of “sonrise” continued as the Congress released its third list of 23 candidates on Thursday. The ‘one family, one ticket’ rule coined by Punjab Congress chief did not bend but it brought more sons in the poll fray, including one of ruling Shriomani Akali Dal MP Sher Singh Ghubaya.
Reversing the trend of women making way for men in the family, the party settled for a wife of Congress Jalandhar MP Santhok Chaudhary instead of his son, Vikramjit Singh, to keep the number for women candidates at least at 10% of the total so far.
The list brought relief to Congress candidates on the 23 seats on second day of filing of nominations in Punjab for February 4 polls, taking the total nominees announced by the party so far to 100 out of 117.
But the suspense on some high-profile candidates continued. The name of cricketerturned-politician Navjot Singh Sidhu did not figure on the list. His wife, Navjot Kaur, has announced that her husband will contest from her seat, Amritsar East, but Congress seems to be baffled by the line and pitch of the former batsman’s next move.
Sidhu wants Congress to commit the Jalandhar Cantt seat to Pargat Singh, who had joined the Congress in November along with Sidhu’s wife.
Pargat wants to recontest from his seat after resigning as a legislator of the ruling Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) but Amarinder wants to retain the party’s candidate in 2012 state polls and his loyalist, former MLA Jagbir Brar, from the seat. Amarinder has proposed that Pargat shift base to Nakodar, but both the sporting icons would not have it any other way, party sources said.
The party also did not announce the Ludhiana East seat from where former union minister Manish Tewari is seeking a ticket and has Amarinder’s support but is facing stiff resistance from Ludhiana MP Ravneet Bittu. But another former MP Mohinder Kaypee has been rehabilitated from Adampur reserved seat.
CAPTAIN WINS SOME, LOSES SOME
It was a win some, lose some game for state chief Amarinder as he was able to ensure tickets for Akali turncoats he brought into the party fold but not for all. He was batting for former Akali leader Harry Mann from the Samana seat but he had to concede ground to senior MLA Lal Singh whose son, Rajinder Singh, got Samana. Though Lal Singh’s own seat, Sanaur, has been kept pending, he is unlikely to be allowed to become an exception to the ‘one family, one ticket’ rule. Rakesh Pandey, the other sitting MLA who had not been in named in the earlier two lists, has been retained at Ludhiana North.
As party MPs had closed ranks against the tickets to Akali turncoats, Amarinder could not secure the Phillaur seat for former Akali MLA Sarwan Singh Phillaur. The “drug taint” on Sarwan cited as the reason by the MPs, helped Jalandhar MP Santokh Chaudhary to field his wife, Karamjit Kaur, from Phillaur.
Among the SAD turncoats who made it to the list are SAD MP Sher Singh Ghubaya’s son Davinder Ghubaya, who has been fielded from Fazilka, former SAD legislator Rajwinder Kaur Baghike from Nihalsinghwala reserved seat and Kamaljit Singh Karwal, a former close associate of Bains brothers of Ludhiana, has secured a nomination from Atam Nagar against Simarjit Bains despite opposition from local Congress leaders.
There are three more son-rises other than sons of Lal Singh and Ghubaya. Major Singh Bhaini, son of former MLA Gurdeep Bhaini has got Dakha seat of Jassi Khangura, who lost in 2012 polls. Amit Vij, son of Pathankot candidate in 2012 polls, Anil Vij, has bagged nomination from his father’s seat and Arun Dogra, son of former minister Ramesh Chandar Dogra,from Dasuya seat of his father.
Here’s the complete list: All 23 names
Bhoa (SC) : Joginder Pal Singh
Pathankot: Amit Vij
Ajnala: Harpartap Singh Ajnala
Baba Bakala (SC): Santok Singh Bhalaipur
Phagwara (SC): Joginder Singh Mann
Phillaur (SC): Karamjit Kaur Chaudhary
Jalandhar North: Tejinder Bittu
Adampur (SC): Mohinder Singh Kaypee
Dasuya: Arun Dogra
Sham Chaurasi (SC): Pawan Adia
Ludhiana South: Bhupinder Sidhu
Atam Nagar: Kamaljit Singh Karwal
Ludhiana North: Rakesh Pandey
Dakha: Major Singh Bhaini
Nihal Singhwala (SC): Rajwinder Kaur Bhagike
Moga: Dr Harjot Kamal
Fazilka: Davinder Ghubaya
Balluana (SC): Nathu Ram
Kotkapura: Harnirpal Singh Kuku
Bhucho Mandi (SC): Pritam Singh Kotbhai
Maur: Harminder Singh Jassi
Dera Bassi: Deepinder Singh Dhillon
Samana: Rajinder Singh