Lok Sabha Elections 2019; SAD, Congress undecided over Faridkot candidate
The Faridkot Lok Sabha constituency is reserved for SC candidates. In the 2017 Punjab Assembly elections, while the SAD was completely wiped out from the nine assembly seats here, the Congress won six and the AAP bagged three.Updated: Mar 29, 2019 13:10 IST
The ruling Congress and the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) are in a dilemma over the choice of candidates from the Faridkot constituency for the parliamentary elections.
The problem is even more peculiar for the Akali Dal as Faridkot was the epicentre of the 2015 sacrilege and police firing incidents, leading to the death of two Sikh youths. In the 2017 assembly elections, the party was wiped out from all the nine assembly seats in the Lok Sabha constituency after it faced strong public anger.
Of the nine seats, six were won by the Congress, with the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) bagging three.
The constituency is reserved for scheduled caste (SC) candidates.
Even after several rounds of talks, SAD has not been able to reach a consensus on the candidate from the constituency. The names of former MLAs Harpreet Singh Kotbhai (Malout) and Justice Nirmal Singh (Bassi Pathana) are being discussed for party ticket, it is learnt.
The party has decided eight candidates from a total of 10 Lok Sabha constituencies it is contesting in alliance with the BJP which will fight on three seats.
“The names will be discussed in the core committee meeting. Most probably, the candidate will be announced in the first week of April,” said former minister and SAD core committee member Sikander Singh Maluka.
The ruling Congress is also facing a paucity of strong faces in the constituency.
Former Bhadaur MLA Mohammad Sadiq and ex-Nihal Singhwala MLA Rajwinder Kaur Bhagike, who joined the party in 2016, are frontrunners for ticket. A senior leader said the party might field a Mazhabi Sikh candidate as the community has considerable vote bank in the constituency.