BJP ready to contest on all seats in Punjab: Former minister
Chandigarh: Minutes after the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) decided to quit the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) on differences over the three ‘controversial’ farm sector Bills passed by the Parliament, senior BJP leader Madan Mohan Mittal said the party is ready to contest all the 117 seats in the 2022 Punjab Assembly polls.
He even claimed that several Akali leaders are in touch them and want to jump ship to the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).
“The SAD would not get a majority if they contest alone,” Mittal told the media.
In the 2017 Assembly polls, the BJP had contested 23 seats, while the remaining 94 were fought by the SAD.
Out of the 13 Parliamentary seats in Punjab, the Akalis contested 10 in the 2019 general elections, while the BJP fought on the remaining three.
Former minister Mittal has been quite vocal against the SAD for quite some time now, and has been saying that the BJP should part ways with the Akalis with which the saffron party had an alliance for three decades.
He has been claiming that the party has set up a strong base in the rural areas of Punjab.
The relations between the old allies came under strain in December last when Akali Dal chief Sukhbir Singh Badal slammed the BJP during the Citizenship Amendment Bill (CAB) debate in the Parliament.