Though a small town, Majitha gains prominence in the poll season because it being the citadel of ‘Majhe Da Jarnail’ revenue minister Bikram Singh Majithia, who happens to be brother-in-law of Sukhbir Singh Badal. This time the stakes are all the more high due to the entry of Aam Aadmi Party, making the contest triangular.
How much this seat means to the opposition parties is evident from the fact that Congress vicepresident Rahul Gandhi, Aam Aadmi Party convener Arvind Kejriwal and its star campaigner Bhagwant Mann all kicked off their campaigning from Majitha. Majithia, who had won the seat in the last two polls (2007 and 2012), is eyeing a hat-trick.
As Majithia zooms around the segment that has 156 villages in his SUV and at times also rides a motorcycle on the request of his supporters, Congress candidate Sukhjinder Raj Singh Lali Majithia and Aam Aadmi Party’s Himmat Singh Shergill are also campaigning hard to upset his apple cart.
In his speeches, Majithia talks about the development that took place during the SAD-BJP rule, besides attacking the state Congress chief Captain Amarinder Singh for remaining “aloof” and Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal for making “false promises”.
“Let opponents say whatever they want to. The people of my segment know my work. In the past 10 years, I have brought about a lot of development to this constituency. I can claim that once a dusty town, Majitha has now moved ahead on the path of development,” he says.
On his opponents dragging his name into drug cases, Majithia says: “The SAD-BJP has brought development to the state and the opposition have only accusations to make,” he says.
On the other hand, Congress candidate Lali, who had contested as an Independent in 2012 after being denied ticket by the SAD, says lack of development in the segment is his main poll plank. “I am taking this contest as a personal challenge. The people of Majitha have suffered a lot. I will ensure that the constituency has maximum skill development centres so that the youth get employment,” Lali says.
AAP’s Himmat Singh Shergill has made it a three-cornered contest. Ever since the announcement of his ticket, Shergill is moving aggressively across the constituency and targeting the minister on the drug issue.
“I am contesting the elections to wipe out drugs from Punjab. Also tackling unemployment is on my main agenda. Improvement in health and education facilities is need of the hour. The people are showing great support to us,” ShHergill says. As he appeals to the electors to come out and vote for change, he claims there is fear of Akalis among the residents as false cases are being slapped against those who dare to question them. “Things will change as elections approach,” he says.