The by-election to Sangrur Lok Sabha seat in Punjab will be held on June 23 and the votes will be counted on June 26. The seat fell vacant after Mann resigned from the Lok Sabha following his election to the state Assembly from Dhuri this year. Mann had won from the seat twice in 2014 and 2019.
An AAP stronghold, the Sangrur parliamentary constituency has nine Assembly segments, which are not far from Mansa, Moosewala’s home district. The Aam Aadmi Party won all nine Assembly seats in the 2022 Punjab Assembly polls.
The bypoll will be AAP’s first major electoral battle in the state after it formed government in March.
Candidates in fray
The AAP has fielded Gurmail Singh, who is the party’s Sangrur district in-charge, while the Congress has placed its bet on former Dhuri MLA Dalvir Singh Goldy.
The BJP has fielded former Barnala MLA Kewal Dhillon who joined the saffron party on June 4.
Also Read: Sangrur bypoll: Repeating Punjab win an uphill task for AAP as Sidhu Moosewala’s killing becomes focus of Congress’ poll plank
Kamaldeep Kaur, sister of Balwant Singh Rajoana, a convict in former Punjab chief minister Beant Singh’s assassination case, has been fielded by the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) for the bypoll.
Shiromani Akali Dal (Amritsar) chief Simranjit Singh Mann is also contesting from Sangrur Lok Sabha seat.
Campaigning in full swing
Senior leaders of the political parties are aggressively canvassing for their respective leaders.
While the opposition parties are targeting the AAP over the issue of alleged deteriorating law and order situation, “unfulfilled” pre-poll promises, and new excise policy, the ruling party is relying on highlighting its decisions and crackdown on mafia.
AAP in its campaign has been seen to highlight its decisions such as minimum support price on ‘moong’ crop, one MLA, one pension, removing encroachment from Panchayat lands, and action against sand mafia taken by the Bhagwant Mann-led government.
The blatant killing of singer Sidhu Moosewala has become the focus of opposition parties’ poll campaign. The Congress, BJP and SAD have questioned the Bhagwant Mann government’s decision to withdraw the security cover of Sidhu, a day after which he was shot dead in Mansa district.
While Warring among the first of the politicians to visit Moosewala’s family in Mansa district, a battery of other Congress leaders followed him, extending support to the victim family and launching an aggressive attack on the Mann government.
On June 12, the Congress released a campaign video song, titled “Ek mauka piya bhari es vaar deo apne Goldy nu jimmevari (one chance has cost us dear, this time give responsibility to our Goldy)”, in the constituency, which shows Moosewala’s dead body and even the memorial site where he was cremated.