Patiala The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) has fielded turncoat Ajitpal Singh Kohli from Patiala urban assembly segment. A former Patiala mayor, Kohli, 43, had joined the party, last week, after snapping ties with the SAD.
He and his family had around seven decades of association with Akali Dal as his father Surjit Singh Kohli, senior vice-president of Akali Dal, remained public works department (PWD) minister in 1997. His grandfather Sardara Singh Kohli also represented the SAD as an MLA. Kohli was Patiala mayor from 2007-2012.
Sumaer Sira, another contender of AAP from the constituency, said he had worked hard for party welfare, but will continue to work for the party. “It is a well thought-out decision as AAP supremo Arvind Kejriwal had a word with me on Friday. Our main motive is to end Captain Amarinder Singh’s reign in Patiala city,” he said.
Kohli said, “I will take all AAP leaders and workers along to build my campaign. The party has shown interest in me and I will give my 100% in ensuring party’s victory,” he said.
CONG, PLC YET TO ANNOUNCE CANDIDATE
The Congress and the Punjab Lok Congress are yet announce their candidate from the seat. For the Congress, it will be a major challenge to make up for Amarinder; he won four elections in a row from here (2002-17). Even during the 2015 by-polls, his wife Preneet Kaur emerged victorious.
However, after floating the PLC, even Amarinder is yet to announce a candidate from this particular segment. “The party is in dilemma on whether to float a local party leader against expected experienced opponents or bring in an outsider to retain Congress supremacy in Patiala city,” said a senior party leader.
From the Congress, names of Punjab cabinet minister Brahm Mohindra and former MP Dharamvira Gandhi have been doing the rounds. Mohindra, however, has already negated this possibility. “I abide by the party’s one family, one ticket policy. My son is contesting from Patiala rural. Therefore, there is no possibility of me contesting from urban constituency,” he said.