BJP to declare candidates for Punjab polls on January 11th
BJP, junior partner of SAD in Punjab, is yet to finalise its list of candidates, though election dates have been announced. The BJP is likely to announce its list of candidates on January 11.
The Congress still has 40 seats undecided — the delay in selecting candidates could affect electoral prospects of these parties in the elections, that experts and leaders feel are “candidate-centric”.
Selection and early announcement of candidates are advantageous as it gives ample time for campaign, especially in the State elections where the rapport a candidate enjoys with a voter plays an important factor, political leaders say. “In Punjab, the Assembly elections are “candidate-centric” and a delay in announcing the candidates would surely affect the electoral prospects of any party, whether BJP or Congress,” Pramod Kumar, director of the Institute for Development and Communication in Chandigarh, says.
“The BJP has not announced even a single candidate till now. The Congress is yet to take a call on 40 seats. This will only help parties such as the AAP and the Akalis, which have announced their candidates and have started canvassing,” he said.
The new entrant AAP, has fielded candidates for all 112 seats, which the party is contesting.
Its alliance partner, the Lok Insaaf Party of Bains brothers, is contesting the remaining five. The SAD has announced 92 candidates till now.
The party will contest 94 seats out of the total 117, as per the seat-sharing arrangement with the BJP.
Leaders in the Congress and the BJP are apprehensive that the delay in announcing candidates would affect the prospects of the parties.
Punjab Congress president Amarinder Singh said the final list would be out by January 9.
Sources said it seemed difficult that Congress list would be out before January 10 as party’s vice-president Rahul Gandhi, who is on vacation, is likely to return on January 9 and then a meeting would be held to finalise the candidates.