The Aam Aadmi Party on Sunday evening replaced its candidates from Nakodar in Jalandhar district and Balluana segment of Fazilka district. The party also announced five more candidates.
As per a press release, former SAD leader Surinder Singh Hayer has replaced AAP’s Nakodar candidate, party’s NRI wing chief Jagtar Singh Sanghera; whereas its Balluana nominee Giriraj Rajaura has been dropped in favour of 27-year-old Simarjit Singh.
“Sanghera has been changed to assign him some other responsibilities, Rajaura was replaced as the report about his poll campaign has not been very positive and encouraging,” said AAP state convener Gurpreet Singh Waraich.
As per sources, the new Nakodar nominee Hayer is facing criminal charges of fraud and forgery and is out on bail. A case against him was registered under sections 406 (breach of trust) and 420 (forgery) of the IPC at the Nakodar Sadar police station on August 26 this year. As per the complainant, Harbans Singh of Tut Kalan village, he had given `71 lakh to Hayer for executing mutation of the land and for facilitating his family’s immigration to Canada in 2011. Hayer neither did the work nor returned the money, the complainant said. Hayer, who was close associate of transport minister Ajit Singh Kohar, had joined AAP earlier this year and was vehemently opposing ticket to Sanghera.
Sanghera, when contacted, said he was saddened by the development. “However, I will not say anything else at this moment,” he told HT.
Five more candidates named
The AAP announced five more candidates on Sunday. Jalandhar car dealer association president HS Walia (37) will be party nominee from Jalandhar Cantonment. He was picked by the party over senior journalist Major Singh. Sources said Walia has been handpicked by AAP’s Punjab affairs in-charge Sanjay Singh.
Ranjit Singh Cheema (36), a social worker as per party claims, will contest from Patti; Dinesh Bansal (35) from Sangrur; Ashutosh Joshi (40) from Rajpura, and Manjit Singh Sidhu (47) from Rampura Phull.
With this, the AAP has announced 98 candidates in Punjab till now.