The Fourth Front didn’t have much to write home about in the Punjab polls, which remained a triangular contest. All candidates fielded by Sucha Singh Chhotepur’s Aapna Punjab Party (APP) and Patiala member parliament (MP) Dr Dharamvira Gandhi’s Punjab Front lost their deposits, not winning a single seat.
None of the 77 candidates fielded by APP managed to finish among top three. Party founder and former Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) state convener Chhotepur, who was seen as the party’s best bet, could muster only 1,740 votes from Gurdaspur and finished behind the three main parties: Congress, Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) and Aam Aadmi party (AAP).
In all, the party candidates polled less than 38,000 votes, which is about 0.2% of the total votes. The APP’s dismal show can be gauged from the fact that AAP ally Bains brothers’ Lok Insaaf Party, which contested only five seats, got five times the votes (1.9 lakh).
“It’s the people’s mandate, and we can’t do much about it,” Chhotepur told Hindustan Times, adding, “But surely Aam Aadmi Party frittered away a great chance by failing to hold us together and being rash and arrogant.”About his party’s dismal performance, he said, “We had very little time to campaign. We got the symbol after the poll announcement... The people of Punjab wanted a third, but not a fourth alternative.”
Punjab Front, floated by former AAP leader Dr Dharamvira Gandhi, also failed to make any impact in the polls. The party had fielded nine candidates, all of whom lost their deposits.