The Congress is leading on nine seats in Lok Sabha election 2019 from Punjab. The Aam Aadmi Party has also opened its account in the state as Bhagwant Mann, sitting MP and state president, has established a lead in Sangrur Lok Sabha seat. Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) is leading with 3 seats in the state.
Congress' Manish Tiwari is now leading against Prem Singh Chandumajra from Akali Dal, in Anandpur Sahib.
While the grand old party is expected to have an easy win in some seats but is facing tough competition in Gurdaspur, Bathinda, Sangrur, Ferozpur and Khadoor Sahib.
The SAD, in order to win the general election 2019, had left no stone untouched in raising the issue of 1984's anti-Sikh riots, but the Congress also raised the incident of killing of two young men at Bargari in police firing in 2015.
In previous Lok Sabha election, Punjab witnessed a triangular contest between Congress, Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), and the SAD-BJP alliance. SAD and AAP had won four seats each, followed by Congress' with three seats and BJP's two seats.
However, this time, the other parties are facing a lot of dissatisfaction and infighting among its leadership. The senior SAD leaders launched a parallel outfit called Shiromani Akali Dal (Taksali), formed by Ranjit Singh Brahmpura, Sewa Singh Sekhwan and Rattan Singh Ajnala on December 16 2018, and three of the four AAP MPs also left the party after a tussle with the leadership in the Centre.
Sunil Jakhar, sitting Gurdaspur MP and Punjab Congress president, is facing a tough challenge against actor-turned-politician Sunny Deol, son of the Bollywood icon Dharmendra. Recently, Jhakar was also called "the future Chief Minister of Punjab" by Captain Amarinder Singh.
Additionally, NRI diaspora this time remained elusive of the parliamentary elections as compared to the 2014 Lok Sabha elections when it has extended support to AAP. Punjab is witnessing an intense battle on some of its constituency seats on the basis of personalities, not issues.
Congress president Rahul Gandhi visited Bargari to address a rally just a few days before the elections and a day after Priyanka Gandhi Vadra, AICC general secretary, visited Bathinda and wooed electors by calling herself a "daughter-in-law of Punjab."
(Edited by Vivek Dubey)