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Will Punjab witness a surge of byelections as sitting MLAs vie for Lok Sabha seats?

The AAP has fielded nine of its legislators, while the Congress has nominated three of its own for the Lok Sabha elections

Written by  Jasleen Kaur -- May 04th 2024 04:39 PM
Will Punjab witness a surge of byelections as sitting MLAs vie for Lok Sabha seats?

Will Punjab witness a surge of byelections as sitting MLAs vie for Lok Sabha seats?

PTC Web Desk: The political landscape in Punjab is heating up as the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) and Congress gear up for a major electoral battle, with a significant number of incumbent legislators contesting the upcoming Lok Sabha elections. With 12 sitting MLAs throwing their hats into the parliamentary ring, the state braces itself for what could be a flurry of byelections to fill vacant assembly seats if these legislators emerge victorious.

The AAP has fielded nine of its legislators, while the Congress has nominated three of its own for the Lok Sabha elections. Among the prominent AAP candidates are Cabinet ministers Kuldeep Singh Dhaliwal, Laljit Singh Bhullar, Gurmeet Singh Khudian, Gurmeet Singh Meet Hayer, and Dr Balbir Singh. Additionally, Muktsar MLA Jagdeep Singh Kaka Brar, Batala MLA Amansher Singh Sherry Kalsi, and Ludhiana Central MLA Ashok Parashar Pappi are also in the fray. On the other hand, the Congress has nominated Punjab Congress president Amarinder Singh Raja Warring, former Deputy CM Sukhjinder Singh Randhawa, and three-time Bholath MLA Sukhpal Singh Khaira as its candidates.


This surge of sitting legislators entering parliamentary politics is being described as an "unprecedented phenomenon" in Punjab's electoral history.

The AAP's rise to power in Punjab in 2022, securing a staggering 92 out of 117 Assembly seats, has reshaped the state's political landscape. Notably, the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) and the BJP have refrained from fielding any sitting legislators in the Lok Sabha elections.

However, amidst this electoral fever, two legislators have tendered their resignations from the state Assembly. Chabbewal legislator Dr Raj Kumar Chabbewal, who defected from the Congress to join the AAP on March 15, and AAP's Jalandhar West legislator Sheetal Angural, who switched allegiance to the BJP on March 27, have both resigned from their Asembly seats. Yet, their resignations are pending acceptance by the Speaker.

The resignations of Dr Raj Kumar Chabbewal and Sheetal Angural raise questions about the applicability of the anti-defection law, enshrined in the Tenth Schedule to the Constitution. According to this law, a member of a legislative house belonging to a political party shall be disqualified if they voluntarily give up their membership from such a party. However, the acceptance of their resignations remains pending, leaving their status in a legal limbo.

The upcoming Lok Sabha elections in Punjab are poised to be a high-stakes battle, with sitting MLAs from both the AAP and Congress vying for victory. As political parties intensify their campaigns and candidates canvass tirelessly across the state, the electoral dynamics are set for a significant shift.

- PTC NEWS

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