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Punjab polls: This time it will be a triangular contest between SAD, Congress and AAP
In Punjab there were days when political fight was between Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) and Congress with no third third party in the picture. Now for the first time during 2017 assembly elections there will be a contest between SAD-BJP alliance, Congress and Aam Aadmi Party.
In the politics of any state, new developments are born near the elections, which have impact on the political affairs of that particular state.

Punjab is the only state, witnessing new issues all the time which have shaken the politics with violent jerks and disappeared with the passage of time by giving a new direction, irrespective of its good or bad impacts. The new concept needs to be discussed as these were seen in the politics of Punjab earlier. The first and foremost trend is triangular contest in the elections, which was never seen before.

There had been a direct contest between SAD and Congress before 2004 Lok Sabha elections and hardly any other political party had thought of forming government in Punjab by putting its hand on the seats countable on fingers only.

But in 2014 Lok Sabha polls, Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) won four seats in Punjab at its own strength and ideology without any alliance with any political party, starting the trend of triangular contest. In 2017 elections in Punjab, it will be for the first time that there will be strong contest between SAD-BJP alliance, Congress and Aam Aadmi Party. The recent visits of Arvind Kejriwal, convener of AAP in Punjab, ahead of the elections, are an indication of activeness of the party leaving a brunt on the politics of the state.

It had been a tradition after the reorganization of Punjab in 1966 that the Congress and SAD have been alternatively forming the government. However, in 2007, SAD-BJP alliance government had come into existence. As per the trend of politics in Punjab, it was the turn of Congress in 2012 but it happened otherwise and SAD-BJP got the second term.

Another development which cropped up in Punjab's politics was the interest of family members. It is an admitted fact that every politician wants to project his family members in the politics.

But in Punjab, during 2012, a new concept was launched of involvement of family members. After winning the elections, Parkash Singh Badal himself become the Chief Minister and his son Sukhbir Singh Badal was appointed as Deputy Chief Minister. Not only this, the important portfolios in the ministry are either with them or with the close relatives.

In addition, Harsimrat Kaur Badal, wife of Sukhbir Singh Badal, is cabinet minister at the Centre. Even the command of Shiromani Akali Dal is in the hand of Dy. CM and virtually he is Chief Minister of Punjab.

Another drift which has come up is the differences between SAD and BJP . It has been seen in the past that on certain issues, both the parties don't have consent of each other and fissure could be seen even at the cracking stage and this new trend could lead to new directions to the politics in Punjab.

Presently, the new faces among youth in Punjab are engrossed to come forward in the politics. Even in 2012, new faces like Bikram Singh Majithia and Parminder Singh Dhinds were given important portfolios.

Another trend which could be seen in the Punjab's politics is the entry of family members particularly in Akali Dal. In the past, it has been a practice that the party had handed over the command to only those leaders who have sacrificed for the party at the fore front and worked for its prosperity.

Frankly speaking, despite the fact that number of senior leaders were available to present their claims for the post of SAD president but if we have look at the working of Sukbir Singh Badal, during the past eight years, it is crystal clear that Sukhbir has been in a position to make a niche in the adjoining state Haryana and even at Delhi. At both these states the Akali Dal had not only contested but established its existence.

The next step of Sukhbir Singh Badal looks to be introducing the party in the states where the population of Sikhs is figuring so that Akali Dal does not remain confined to Punjab state rather it becomes a national party.

Editorial NOTE: This article is categorized under Opinion Section. The views expressed in this article are solely those of the author and do not necessarily represent the views of In case you have a opposing view, please click here to share the same in the comments section.
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