The Badals did everything to woo voters, but their doles failed to cut much ice with Punjab's electorate.
Be it additional subsidised ghee and sugar, atta dal scheme, free pilgrimage, increase in social security pensions, regularisation of services of 30,000 employees or the SYL water controversy, Badals had to be content with the third position.
The drug trade taint, farmer suicides, spurious pesticides and the decade-long anti incumbency factor weighed heavily against the Akalis.
In fact, political observers and opponents say the most important takeaway for the Badals in this election is their blatant mixing of politics with religion (deras). Law and order, corruption and poor financial health of the state also contributed to the rout.
The Badals gave a free hand to constituency in -charges, who often committed excesses and flouted norms, cornering transport, liquor, sand and cable businesses. Besides, the 'arrogance' of ministers and party leaders and their 'unavailability' to people when in need, also led to their mass rejection.
Favouritism, centralisation of power and dynastic rule also led to the defeat of the SAD-BJP alliance.
Chief minister Parkash Singh Badal said he will support Singh on issues related to rights of the state. Badal said he will ask his son and SAD president Sukhbir Badal to form a committee so that the reasons behind the defeat can be discussed in detail.
Sukhbir also congratulated Amarinder over the victory and said, "We honour the mandate given by Punjabis. I wish the Congress continues to maintain the pace of development in Punjab and take it to new heights."
"As per information, the SAD has got an impressive 30.4 per cent of vote share. Despite this, we have not fared well due to concentration of AAP vote share of around 24 per cent in Malwa region alone. There are other factors also which will be examined in due course," he added.
On the other hand, controversial SAD leader Bikram Majithia won from Majitha defeating his nearest rival, Congress candidate Sukhjinder Raj Singh Lally, by 22,884 votes.
(With inputs from PTI)
Also read: Assembly Election Results 2017: All you need to know