Voting begins in Punjab by-poll

Chandigarh, Feb 13 (IANS) Voting for the Khadoor Sahib assembly seat by-election started on Saturday morning amidst boycott of the election by Congress and AAP, making it a one-sided contest for the ruling Shiromani Akali Dal.

Within an hour into voting, 10 percent of the nearly 1.85 lakh votes were cast.

Voting began at 8 a.m. and will take place till 5 p.m.

Akali Dal candidate Ravinder Singh Brahmpura faces six other candidates, including five independents.

The seat fell vacant after sitting Congress legislator Ramanjit Singh Sikki resigned in October 2015 over recent incidents of sacrilege of Sikh holy book, Guru Granth Sahib, in Punjab and the state government failing to contain such incidents.

The candidate winning the Khadoor Sahib seat in the by-election will remain a legislator for only about one year as assembly elections to 117 seats in Punjab will be held in February 2017.

The main opposition Congress and the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) has opted out of the by-election.

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