Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) wrested control over the Hoshiarpur Central Co-operative Bank with its candidates winning in eight of the nine zones. Three candidates of the party had already been elected unanimously.
On Monday, election to the rest of the six zones was held. Barring one, SAD registered victory in all. The highlight of the election was the defeat of chief parliamentary secretary Sohan Singh Thandal's son Ravinder Singh from zone no. 2 from where Avtar Singh Bahowal, a confidant of district SAD president Surinder Singh Bhulewal Rathan, won. Chief parliamentary secretary Mohinder Kaur Josh could manage win for only one of her candidates, though she had fielded proxy candidates against Rathan's men in other zones too. The old group led by former managing director Gurdev Singh Nasrala was also routed.
It is noteworthy that the Congress had held a massive demonstration against the ruling party alleging malpractices in the election process. Three of the candidates whose nomination papers were rejected by the returning officer had moved the Punjab and Haryana high court but their petition was dismissed. Two other member societies had sought voting right but their plea, too, was rejected by the high court. "It proves that the election process as conducted by the department was fair," said returning officer Devinder Parshad Handa.
Those who were elected include Avtar Singh Bahowal from zone 2, Kulwinder Singh (zone 3), Baldev Singh (zone 4), Baljnder Singh (zone 6), Narvinder Singh (zone 7) and Parminder Singh Pannu (zone 9). Satwinder Pal Singh Dhatt zone 5, Amarjit Singh (zone 1) and Avtar Singh Johal (zone 8) were elected unanimously.
Rathan expressed pleasure at the results and said it was the victory of SAD's policies. "Several allegations were levelled against us but the high court order did not find any truth in them," he added.