Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) general secretary (in charge of Punjab) Dushyant Gautam on Thursday said that the party is preparing to contest all 117 seats in the state Assembly polls and the party high command will take the decision of alliance with Captain Amarinder Singh’s new party, Punjab Lok Congress.
Speaking to ANI, Gautam said, “We are preparing to contest for 117 seats in the upcoming Punjab Assembly elections. The final decision of alliance between BJP and Captain’s new political party will only be taken by party high command.” This came after Captain Amarinder Singh launched his new political party after quitting Congress to fight the forthcoming Assembly polls in the State and is hopeful of a tie-up with BJP if the ongoing protest by farmer unions against three farm laws is resolved “in farmers’ interest”.
In a series of tweets by his media advisor Raveen Thukral, the former chief minister also said that he is also looking at an alliance with like-minded parties such as breakaway Akali groups, “particularly Dhindsa and Brahmpura factions”.
In addition, the Farm Laws Repeal Bill, 2021 was passed in both Houses of Parliament on Monday, the first day of the Winter session.
Meanwhile, BJP National Executive Council Harjit Singh Grewal also said that the BJP and Amarinder Singh have the same ideologies. “If we form an alliance with his party, then it will be good for Punjab. But the decision to form an alliance with Captain’s new party will only be taken by party high command,” the BJP leader said.
Reacting to the speculations over this alliance, Congress spokesperson, Kamaljit Singh Brar said that this alliance will not affect the party in Punjab.
“BJP will not be able to form its government in Punjab even after repealing the three farm laws. Farmers are also demanding a legal guarantee on Minimum Support Price (MSP) and justice for the family of farmers who lost their lives in this year-long protest,” Brar said.
Taking a jibe at former Punjab Chief Minister Amarinder Singh, the Congress spokesperson said, “Our party is not getting affected with the withdrawal of Captain. The work he was not able to do in 4.5 years, has been done by our current Chief Minister Charanjit Singh Channi in just a few months.”
Punjab is scheduled to go to the Assembly polls in 2022. In the 2017 Punjab Assembly polls, Congress won an absolute majority in the state by winning 77 seats and ousted the SAD-BJP government after 10 years. Aam Aadmi Party had emerged as the second-largest party winning 20 seats in 117-member Punjab Legislative Assembly. The Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) could only manage to win 15 seats while the BJP secured 3 seats.