By a margin of 22,233 votes over his rival of the Congress
Chandigarh: The ruling Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) on Sunday retained the Amritsar South Assembly seat in Punjab with its nominee Inderbir Singh Bolaria winning by a margin of 22,233 votes over his nearest rival Navdeep Singh Goldy of the Congress.
Mr. Bolaria polled 43,495 votes against 21,262 votes secured by Mr. Goldy. SAD (Amritsar) nominee Ram Singh got 1,161 votes and the fourth candidate in the fray Sharanjit Singh, an Independent, got 363 votes in the by-election held due to the death of sitting SAD candidate Raminder Singh Bolaria, father of the ruling party nominee.
With this win the number of SAD members in the 117 member State Assembly has risen to 49. SAD’s alliance partner BJP has 19 members; the opposition Congress 44 and five are Independents.
Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal on Sunday thanked the voters in Amritsar South Assembly constituency for giving the Shiromani Akali Dal-BJP alliance an “even more emphatic mandate” in the by-poll than the one given in the State elections held last year.
The Chief Minister said that there was a significant improvement in the percentage of votes polled in favour of the SAD candidate over the February 2007 result.
Mr. Badal also thanked the Election Commission for ensuring a free and fair poll.
Meanwhile, Punjab Congress president Rajinder Kaur Bhattal has constituted a five member committee which will “study the large scale malpractices indulged in by the SAD-BJP regime in the by-poll”.
The committee will “closely study the large scale malpractices indulged in by the Akali-BJP combine and its impact on the result of recent Amritsar South by-election”.- PTI