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Lok Sabha elections: Punjab prepares for high-stakes polls with mix of established leaders, fresh faces | Explainer

Punjab finds itself once again engulfed in the fervor of elections, this time gearing up to elect its 13 Members of Parliament (MPS) in the final phase of the seven-phase Lok Sabha elections scheduled for June 1

Written by  Jasleen Kaur -- May 01st 2024 05:20 PM
Lok Sabha elections: Punjab prepares for high-stakes polls with mix of established leaders, fresh faces | Explainer

Lok Sabha elections: Punjab prepares for high-stakes polls with mix of established leaders, fresh faces | Explainer

Lok Sabha elections 2024: In the 2022 Punjab Assembly elections, a significant political shift was observed when 88 first-time legislators were elected to the Vidhan Sabha, constituting over 75% of the total House strength of 117. Notable among these newcomers were Bhagwant Mann, Chief Minister, and seven legislators, who got ministerial berths in the state Cabinet.

Fast forward two years, Punjab finds itself once again engulfed in the fervor of elections, this time gearing up to elect its 13 Members of Parliament (MPS) in the final phase of the seven-phase Lok Sabha elections scheduled for June 1.



In the last Assembly elections in Punjab, major political parties such as AAP, Congress, BJP and Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) heavily relied on fresh faces as candidates. However, with the Lok Sabha seats up for grabs, these same parties are now banking on established figures to secure victory, resulting in a highly competitive electoral landscape. The contest features prominent personalities, including a former Chief Minister, a former Deputy CM, five Cabinet ministers, several MLAs, seven MPs, and a state party chief.


The Congress, having announced candidates for 12 out of the 13 parliamentary seats in Punjab, is fielding heavyweight contenders. Former Chief Minister Charanjit Singh Channi contests from Jalandhar while his former deputy Sukhjinder Singh Randhawa is party's choice from Gurdaspur. PPCC chief and former minister Amrinder Singh Raja Warring is contesting from Ludhiana. His wife Amrita warring had recently courted controversy by comparing Guru Nanak Dev Ji's 'Panja' to Congress' symbol. 


The ruling Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) has nominated five Cabinet ministers as Lok Sabha candidates — Dr Balbir Singh from Patiala, Gurmeet Singh Khuddian from Bathinda, Laljit Singh Bhullar from Khadoor Sahib, Kuldeep Singh Dhaliwal from Amritsar, and Gurmeet Singh Hayer from Sangrur.

The ruling AAP has also fielded three sitting MLAs — Ashok Parashar Pappi from Ludhiana, Amansher Singh Sherry Kalsi from Gurdaspur and Jagdeep Singh Kaka Brar from Ferozepur. Notably, Congress MLA Dr Raj Kumar Chabbewal, who joined the AAP, is contesting from Hoshiarpur.


In a bid to secure its electoral presence, the Congress has strategically nominated candidates such as Dera Baba Nanak MLA Sukhjinder Singh Randhawa from Gurdaspur and Bholath MLA Sukhpal Khaira from Sangrur. Amrinder Singh Raja Warring, contesting from Ludhiana, represents Gidderbaha in the Punjab Vidhan Sabha.

The Assembly elections of 2022 saw significant defeats for prominent leaders, including former CM Charanjit Singh Channi, former CM Capt Amarinder Singh and five-time former CM Parkash Singh Badal. 


At present, seven sitting MPs are contesting in Punjab, including former Union Minister Harsimrat Kaur Badal from Bathinda and Preneet Kaur seeking re-election from Patiala. Notable contenders from other parties include Dr Amar Singh and Gurjeet Singh Aujla from Congress, Ravneet Singh Bittu from BJP and Simranjit Singh Mann from SAD (Amritsar).

The electoral battle also features intriguing contests, such as the one in Faridkot between established singer Hans Raj Hans from BJP and actor-singer Karamjit Singh Anmol from AAP. Additionally, Bathinda sees the candidature of Lakha Sidhana, a former gangster-turned-activist, representing Shiromani Akali Dal (Amritsar).

- With inputs from agencies

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