Where Cong emerged strong in Punjab: reserved assembly segments…

Anju Agnihotri Chaba
Punjab Congress Chief Minister Amarinder Singh and Congress chief Rahul Gandhi. (File)

The Congress, which won eight of the 13 Lok Sabha seats in Punjab, was also the prime choice in a majority of the Dalit population dominated constituencies. The SAD-BJP combine, which together won four seats, was the second choice.

Of the total 117 assembly segments under 13 Lok Sabha constituencies in Punjab, 34 are reserved.

A close look at the results declared Thursday revealed the Congress candidates led in 21 reserved assembly segments. In the remaining 13 segments, Shiromani Akali Dal remained ahead in six, while the Aam Aadmi Party and the Bahujan Samaj Party took lead in three segments each.

The SAD secured lead in three reserved assembly segments each in Bathinda and Firozpur Lok Sabha constituencies. The seats were won by party nominee Harsimrat Kaur Badal and her husband Sukhbir Badal, respectively.

In Sangrur Lok Sabha constituency, the AAP remained the first choice of the the Dalit voters in all three reserved assembly segments. Party candidate Bhagwant Mann eventually retained the Lok Sabha seat. The BJP, meanwhile, got more votes in the two reserved assembly segments of Gurdaspur and one of Hoshiarpur Lok Sabha constituency, from where its candidate, actor-turned-politician Sunny Deol and Som Parkash, were elected respectively.

Apart from this, BSP candidate Balwinder Kumar secured a lead in one (Adampur) reserved assembly segment in Jalandhar constituency.

The 34 reserved assembly segments polled 39,89,816 votes, which is 29% of the total 1.37 crore votes polled in Punjab. Of the total votes polled in reserved segments, 15,37,464 (38.5 per cent) went to the Congress while 13,66,300 (34.2 per cent) wee secured by the SAD-BJP combine. Remaining around 27 per cent votes were shared by the AAP, BSP and others.

Meanwhile, the SAD-BJP combine also came out stronger in several urban areas seats this time. For instance, in Jalandhar Lok Sabha constituency, the Congress lost in Jalandhar North and Jalandhar Central assembly segment, the core urban area of the constituency, by about 11,000 votes. In Hoshiarpur Lok Sabha constituency also, BJP managed to get a lead of around 73,000 votes from Phagwara and Hoshiarpur, the core city areas, and Dasuya and Mukerian, the semi-urban areas.

In Gurdaspur, BJP got around 30,000 lead from Pathankot, 34,000 from Dina Nagar and around 21,000 from Sujanpur, all the urban and semi-urban area dominated assembly segments.Congress was strong mostly in the rural areas.