The Ambala parliamentary constituency, spread over Ambala, Panchkula and Yamunanagar districts, is all set to witness triangular contest between INLD, BJP and Congress.
The BJP has fielded its former MP and State Unit Chief Ratan Lal Kataria while the Congress has given ticket to former union minister Shailja who belongs to Sirsa. The INLD has fielded its MLA Balwant Singh Kotkachua.
The parliamentary constituency having 12,00061 electorates is spread over nine assembly segments. Four of the segments Naggal, Sadhora, Mulana and Naraingarh are represented by INLD MLAs. The BJP has fielded its two MLAs in Ambala City and Chichroli. The Congres has lone MLA from Panchkula. The BSP, MLA representing Jagadhr assembly segment has recently joined the INLD.
Since 1952 Lok Sabha elections this constituency has witnessed direct fight between Congress and Jan Sangh (now BJP except in 1998 when the BSP-INLD alliance won this seat.
The former governor of Himachal Pradesh Suraj Bhan had been elected from this seat a number of times from Jan Sangh and BJP ticket.
In 1999 elections the INLD had offered its support to BJP candidate Ratan Lal Kataria who had defeated the Congress's Phool Chand Mulana with a margin of around 1.25 lakh votes. This time the INLD itself is contesting the elections.
Kataria is depending on the 'feel good factor' and his performance over the last four years. He visited almost all the 1500 village of the constituency since the day elections were announced.
He is promising the electorates that he would bring big industries to provide jobs to thousands of unemployed. He claims that he would recapture this seat for the second time.
Though Shailja started her election campaign a bit late she was received well. She is electioneering that Sonia Gandhi has sent her to serve the people of Ambala and promised that she would make Ambala an industrial hub like Gurgaon. The internal groupism may hamper her triumph otherwise she has a prospect to go ahead in the political race.
Kotkachua who has a strong hold in villages is intensively going round in all nine-assembly segments. He is seeking votes on the development works done under "Sarkar Aapke Dwar programme" of Om Parkash Chautala led INLD government in the constituency.
He is confident that the team of his committed party workers would win this battle. He is giving word to people that all their pending development works would be done during the remaining one year of the state government led by Chautala.
The candidates of HVP, BSP, Samta Party, Lok Jan Shakti, Haryana Akali Dal and Ekta Shakti are also in fray. Some of them would play an important role in the defeat and victory of these three 'bigs'.