Things continue to get tough for Gurjeet Singh Aujla, the two-time Congress MP from Amritsar.



Tribune News Service

GS pole

Amritsar, April 23

The Amritsar Lok Sabha seat will see tough battles at different corners.

Traditionally, Amritsar was the seat of Congress. Since 1952, 20 Lok Sabha polls and by-polls have been held. Out of these, Congress has won 13 times.

parliament fortress

  • Since 1952, 20 Lok Sabha polls and by-polls have been held. Out of these, Congress has won 13 times.
  • The Congress has chosen to retain incumbent MP Gurjeet Singh Aujla, who remained undefeated in the 2017 and 2019 polls.

soni factor

This time, sitting MP Gurjeet Singh Aujla is facing infighting within the party. Aujla’s candidature was opposed by supporters of former Congress deputy CMOP Soni in the presence of state Congress in-charge Devendra Yadav. Mr. Soni was also active in the election.

Understanding Joshi’s Segments

SAD’s former Local Government Minister Anil Joshi, known as ‘Vikas Purush’ for his development work during the SAD-BJP government, remains a popular figure in the Amritsar North constituency, which he represented twice as an MLA. Another advantage in his favor is that he has the support of Hindus, especially in urban areas, but the SAD’s rural vote bank will be a bonus for him.

Sandhu’s urban roots

Former diplomat Taranjit Singh Sandhu is the grandson of Teja Singh Samundri and has a Panthic background, so his roots in the region may be paying off. His father, Bishan Singh Samundri, is the founding vice-chancellor of Guru Nanak Dev University, Amritsar, and his mother, Jagjit Kaur Sandhu, completed her Ph.D. I am back as principal.

The Congress has chosen to retain incumbent MP Gurjeet Singh Aujla, who remained undefeated in the 2017 and 2019 polls with a margin of around 200,000 to 100,000 votes.

This time, the party is facing internal conflict. Aujla’s candidature was opposed by supporters of former Congress deputy CMOP Soni in the presence of state Congress in-charge Devendra Yadav. Mr. Soni was also enthusiastic about the election campaign.

Political analysts also believe that the Congress lacks strong leadership at the state level that could intervene to defuse tensions between Mr. Aujla and Mr. Soni. Mr. Aujla’s tenure as an MP is still not up for debate, but unlike SAD candidate Anil Joshi, he lacked “constituency ownership”.

SAD’s former local government minister Anil Joshi, known as ‘Vikas Purush’ for his development work during the SAD-BJP government, remains popular in the Amritsar North constituency, which he represented twice as an MLA. He’s going to have a tough fight.

Similarly, Joshi’s refusal to toe the Bharatiya Janata Party line on farm issues, for which he faced expulsion, may also benefit him. Another advantage in his favor is that he has the support of Hindu cadres, especially in urban areas, while the SAD’s rural vote bank will be a bonus for him.

However, the pact between the SAD and the Bharatiya Janata Party, which had helped him win votes, has been scrapped, giving his rivals an advantage. Under the seat-sharing scheme between SAD and BJP, the Amritsar seat fell to the BJP. But unless there is cricketer-turned-politician Navjot Singh Sidhu, who held the seat from 2004 to 2014, former Union Minister Arun Jaitley (2014) and former bureaucrat Hardeep -Despite fielding heavyweights such as Singh Puri (2019), the saffron party was unable to win.

The BJP has fielded another former diplomat, Taranjit Singh Sandhu. Citing his expansive vision and cosmopolitan approach, he has been engaging local residents at a good pace on his ‘development’ agenda to put Amritsar on the world map.

The grandson of Teja Singh Samundri, his panthic background and roots with the region may be paying off. His father, Bishan Singh Samundri, is the founding vice-chancellor of Guru Nanak Dev University, Amritsar, and his mother, Jagjit Kaur Sandhu, completed her Ph.D. I am back as principal.

AAP minister Kuldeep Singh Dhaliwal may pose a challenge to the opposition, but anti-incumbent elements could turn spoilsport, officials said. He also lost in the 2019 parliamentary elections by just 20,000 votes.

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