Chandigarh: With the every passing day, election campaign in Punjab Vidhan Sabha is touching new heights. Though, teams of Election Commission equipped with CCTVs and GPS system are trailing every candidate in the election fray and monitoring their each and every activity yet the political parties and their candidates are putting their best possible efforts to pin their rival down in this battle of ballots.
In the 2017 Punjab Vidhan Sabha elections, Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) has emerged as one of the three main political parties pushing the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) to the fourth position. Two main political parties of Punjab include Congress and Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD). The SAD is contesting the election with its alliance partner Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).
To allure voters and give momentum to their respective election campaign, all the political parties have pushed their top brass leaders as star campaigners including Prime Minister Narendra Modi (BJP), Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi, Mayawati (BSP), apart from Bollywood personalities like Hema Malini and Sonu Sood.
Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, Manish Sisodia and comedian-turned-politician Bhagwant Mann are star campaigners for the AAP. The SAD, a regional political party, has given the responsibility to Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal and his Deputy Chief Minister Sukhbir Badal, to ensure victory for the third consecutive time.
The parties are experimenting different modes to influence voters to come in power. Right from door-to-door visits and criticising their rivals, the party candidates are also holding meetings, rallies, road shows, street plays and walks.
Punjab Congress under the leadership of its president Captain Amarinder Singh, is campaigning with slogan ‘Do-tihai Bahumat’ (2/3rd majority), and playing song ‘Chahunda Hai Punjab – Captain Di Sarkar’ (Punjab wants Captain’s government) on loudspeakers.
‘Raaj Nahin; Sewa’ is the favourite slogan of the SAD, the party is dreaming for the third term.
AAP is attacking the Congress distorting its slogan as “Chahunda Hai Punjab – Captain Di Haar; Tiji Waar.”
A widespread ‘kikli’ against the Akali leaders by AAP leader Bhagwant Mann is well received among the masses across the state.
“Takhat Badal Do; Taaj Badal Do; Be-imana Da Raaj Badal Do’ is another popular slogan sounding in streets of Punjab villages.
In this election not only the Election Commission but also the political parties and the candidates are making best of the social media. The social media is also been used by the political parties for live telecast of their events.
It virtually has become a battle field for them as the candidates are leveling allegations and counter allegations on the pages of their social network sites.
Concocted, fake and misleading letters, video, cartoons and even MMS by leaders of rival parties are flooding the social media sites like Facebook and applications like WhatsApp with an aim to grab the vote pie.
Contradicting reports of exit polls on social media showing AAP as winning Punjab election with a majority 80 seats (in one report) out of 117, giving 100 seats in another report also has created confusion. Another report predicts Congress winning the election with 85 seats and placed AAP on the second place with 16 and 11 seats to SAD-BJP alliance.
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