(Punjab): The Lambi assembly seat in Punjab has been
famous for one thing - its legislator and Chief Minister Parkash
Singh Badal. But as the state goes in for the Jan 30 elections,
all eyes will be on it for a different reason. This time the
contest here is a Badal vs Badal vs Badal.
While the ruling Shiromani Akali Dal has again fielded party
patron Parkash Singh Badal for this seat, his younger brother
Gurdas Badal is in the fray as the People's Party of Punjab (PPP)
candidate. The third Badal in the contest is Congress candidate Maheshinder Singh Badal.
While Parkash Badal and Gurdas Badal are real brothers,
Maheshinder Badal is their first cousin.
Floated by former Punjab finance minister and estranged Akali Dal
leader Manpreet Singh Badal last year, PPP decided to field his
father Gurdas Badal for the seat.
"Whatever is the result of the election on the Lambi seat, a Badal
will win and a Badal will lose. It may be unfortunate for the
family but interesting for the voters of the area," voter Gurmet
When relations between the Badal brothers were good, the Lambi
seat used to be nursed for Parkash Singh Badal by Gurdas Badal.
The senior Badal, 84, a four-time Punjab chief minister, had
nothing to worry about on his seat as his younger sibling took
charge of his campaign and election work here.
"It could be a real messy situation this time in the election.
Though Badal Sahib (Parkash Singh Badal) is the tallest among all
leaders here, the election will be an interesting one," Lambi
constituency resident Swaran Singh told IANS here.
In the February 2007 assembly poll, Parkash Singh Badal had
defeated Maheshinder Singh Badal of the Congress by just over
9,000 votes. This was the lowest margin by which Parkash Singh
Badal won his seat.
In the May 2009 Lok Sabha election, the Lambi seat gave Badal's
daughter-in-law, Harsimrat Kaur Badal, a margin of nearly 35,000
votes. However, at that time, Gurdas Badal and Manpreet Badal were
still part of the Akali Dal.
Though not many are doubting Parkash Singh Badal's victory from
this constituency, the air of uncertainty cannot be missed. Since
Gurdas Badal is contesting for the first time, not many are sure
how much dent he will make in his brother and Akali Dal's votebank.
"Badal Sahib will win hands down. Others will realise their
mistake when the result comes out," an Akali Dal supporter outside
their election office said here.
The chief minister, even if he is a little worried, is not showing
it at all.
"I will campaign all over the state again. I know that the people
of my constituency will vote for me," he told a gathering this
week while on a visit.
But the PPP and the Congress are not letting things go without a
"In the fight between the two real brothers (Parkash and Gurdas),
the Congress will emerge a winner," Congress supporter Tejbir
Locals here say Lambi is all set to become a Kurukshetra in the
next few days with the political 'Mahabharat' being played here.
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