Punjab Election 2022: Voting for 117 assembly seats underway
Voting for 117 seats in the Punjab Assembly Election 2022 began at 8 am on Sunday. The state will witness a multi-cornered contest between Congress, AAP, SAD, and the BJP-PLC alliance. The prominent faces in this election include Chief Minister Charanjit Singh Channi, former CMs Amarinder Singh and Parkash Singh Badal, Punjab Congress chief Navjot Singh Sidhu, and AAP's CM face Bhagwant Mann.
As many as 2.14 crore voters of Punjab will decide the fate of 1,304 candidates in 117 constituencies spread across 23 districts of the state. There are 1,209 male and 93 female candidates in the fray. A total of 24,689 polling stations and 51 auxiliary polling stations have been set up, out of which 2,013 have been identified as critical and 2,952 as sensitive.
State CM Charanjit Singh Channi is contesting from two seats--Chamkaur Sahib and Bhadaur, while Punjab Congress chief Navjot Singh Sidhu is fighting from Amritsar (East). AAP's CM face Bhagwant Mann has been pitted from Dhuri, former CM Captain Amarinder Singh from Patiala, SAD's Parkash Singh Badal from Lambi, and Sukhbir Singh Badal from Jalalabad. BJP's Punjab chief Ashwani Kumar Sharma is fighting from Pathankot.
Before the commencement of voting, CM Charanjit Singh Channi offered prayers at the Gurudwara. Apart from this, Bhagwant Mann, the CM face of AAP in Punjab, also offered prayers at Gurdwara Sacha Dhan in Mohali. "Congress & BJP have come together to put allegations on my party and me, but the people of Punjab know everything," Mann told reporters.
As voting began on Sunday morning, Prime Minister Narendra Modi urged people to exercise their right to vote. "Make this special day of democracy forever memorable by exercising your right to vote. Be sure to vote, do your duty as a responsible citizen.," he tweeted in Punjabi. Notably, the counting of votes will take place on March 10.
In the 2017 Punjab Assembly polls, Congress won 77 out of the 117 seats. Arvind Kejriwal's AAP emerged as the second-largest party with 20 seats. Shiromani Akali Dal could bag only 18 seats.