Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Punjab Assembly elections results live: SAD-BJP headed for a repeat

Chandigarh: Punjab's ruling Shiromani Akali Dal-Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) combine Tuesday appeared set to retain power in the state as it won 30 seats and was leading in another 34 seats in the 117-member Assembly.

Congress, which was hoping to wrest power after five years, has managed to win 20 seats so far and was leading in another 30 seats.

Out of the total 50 results declared so far, SAD has won 23 and its ally BJP seven, while Congress has bagged 20 seats.

The SAD-BJP combine surged ahead of the Congress in early trends emerging after the first round of counting on Tuesday for the state's 117 assembly seats.

As per the trends available at 2.00 pm for the remaining 67 seats so far, SAD-BJP combine is ahead in 34 seats, with SAD leading in 29 and BJP in five seats, while the Congress is leading in 30 seats and others in three seats.

It has so far turned out to be a close contest between the ruling alliance and the Congress party.

Manpreet Badal's Punjab People's Party-led Sanjha Morcha failed to make any impact in the polls as it was not in a winning position from any seat.

Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal's estranged cousin Manpreet Badal lost from both Gidderbaha and Maur seats, finishing third in both the seats.

Congress has won the seats of Talwandi Sabo, Amritsar Central, Rajpura, Nabha and Patiala, while the SAD has won Balchaur, Attari, Faridkot and Ghanuar and the BJP Amritsar East.

Former Chief Minister Amarinder Singh retained the Patiala seat defeating Surjit Singh Kohli of the SAD by 42318 votes.

The Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal and his son and Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Singh Badal have won from Lambi and Jalalbad respectively.

Congress nominee Jeet Mohinder Singh Sidhu has retained the Talwandi Sabo seat defeating Amarjit Singh Sidhu (SAD) by a margin of 8524 votes.

The other Congress winners were Om Parksh Soni (Amritsar Central), Hardyal Singh Kamboj (Rajpura) and Sadhu Singh (Nabha).

SAD's Nand Lal has retained the Balchaur seat defeating Shiv Ram Singh (BSP) by a margin of 14857 votes.

Gulzar Singh Ranike of the SAD has again won the Attari seat defeating his nearest rival Tarsem Singh by a margin of 4983 votes.

Deep Malhotra of SAD has annexed the Faridkot seat beating the sitting member Avtar Singh Brar of the Congress by 2727 votes.

SAD's Harpreet Kaur has defeated Madan Lal Jalalpur of the Congress by 1778 votes to win from Ghanaur.

BJP MP Navjot Sidhu's wife Navjot Kaur has been elected from Amritsar East constituency defeating her nearest rival Simarpreet Kaur (Independent) by 7099 votes.

From Maur assembly segment in Faridkot, Punjab Minister Janmeja Singh Sekhon of SAD has defeated Mangat Rai Bansal of Congress by 1387 votes.

From Jaitu (SC) seat, Joginder Singh of Congress has defeated Gurinder Singh of SAD by 6342 votes.

From Dakha, Manpreet Singh of SAD has defeated Jasbir Singh Khangura of Congress by 16,338 votes.

Harmeet Singh Sandhu has retained his Tarn Taran seat defeating Congress' Dharamvir Agnihotri by a margin of 4621 votes.

Amarinder's son Raninder has been trailing by over 6,000 votes in Samana constituency.

Punjab BJP President Ashwani Sharma has been leading by over 11000 votes over his nearest rival Raman Bhalla of the Congress from the Pathankot assembly constituency.

The other key leaders elected were include Hockey Olympian Pargat Singh (SAD- Jalandhar Cantt), Finance Minister Upinderjit Kaur (SAD- Sultanpur Lodhi) and Rajinder Kaur Bhattal (Congress-Lehra).

The mammoth counting exercise began at 8 am amid tight surveillance of the poll officials. Today’s counting of votes will decide the fate of 1,078 candidates, including the two Chief Ministerial aspirants Parkash Singh Badal of ruling SAD-BJP and Amarinder Singh of opposition Congress, in fray for 117 Assembly seats in Punjab.

The ruling SAD-BJP alliance, the Congress and BSP have contested all the 117 assembly seats. While the newly floated Punjab People's Party contested on 92 seats, SAD (Amritsar) headed by former IPS officer Simranjit Singh Mann sought votes at 57 assembly constituencies.

The SAD fielded its candidates on 94 seats which included 10 women while the BJP contesting the remaining 23 seats, which included three women.

The Congress fielded 11 women while the BSP fielded six.

The election to the 117-member assembly mostly witnessed a triangular contest between the ruling SAD-BJP alliance, the main opposition Congress and the Sanjha Morcha which includes the Left and People's Party of Punjab (PPP) led by Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal's estranged nephew Manpreet.

Prominent among those who contested elections include Parkash Singh Badal (Lambi), his son Sukhbir Singh Badal, who is also the Deputy Chief Minister (Jalalabad), Captain Amarinder Singh (Patiala City) and his son Raninder (Samana) besides another former Chief Minister Rajinder Kaur Bhattal (Lehra).

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