The BJP will contest all the 117 seats in the 2022 Punjab Assembly elections, party general secretary Tarun Chugh said on Monday (November 16).
The BJP’s announcement comes almost two months after its long-time ally the Shiromani Akali Dal quit the NDA, disgruntled over the Centre’s farm laws.
“BJP is strengthening its organization on a war footing to contest all 117 Assembly seats in Punjab,” Chugh said.
Chugh said initiatives are being taken to bolster the organizational structure at 23,000 polling booths.
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“BJP president JP Nadda will virtually inaugurate 10 district offices of the party on November 19 and thereafter will undertake a three-day tour to the state to take stock of the preparations and galvanise party workers for the forthcoming Assembly poll battle,” Indian Express quoted him as saying.
Chugh said party leaders under the leadership of unit president Ashwani Sharma will also sensitize people on the reach of 160 welfare schemes launched by the central government in Punjab.
The saffron party was contesting the elections solo before it joined hands with SAD in 1992. Under the alliance, BJP used to field its candidates on three of the 13 Lok Sabha seats from the state and 23 of the 117 Assembly seats, leaving the rest to SAD.
“The last elections that we fought alone was in 1992. We may have had an alliance with the SAD in the later years and Akalis did fight on the bulk of the seats, but it would be wrong to presume that we do not have any base in the rest of the seats in Punjab,” he said.
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Hinting that the SAD might have turned into a sinking ship after severing its ties with the BJP, Chugh said prominent leaders like Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa and Ranjit Singh Brahmpura among many others have quit the party, and many will follow their example.
“BJP is a national party. Many people will join it with new hopes when it charters its own course in Punjab in 2022,” he said.