New Delhi, March 11: The Congress has clearly won as the Punjab Assembly Election Results 2017 were out on Saturday. The ruling Shiromani Akali Dal-Bharatiya Janata Party combine has been decimated from the state after a rule of 10 long years. Meanwhile, Aam Aadmi Party could be seen getting a little over 20 seats in the 117-seat Punjab Legislative Assembly. The Congress was seen getting well above 70 seats in Punjab, coming back to power in the state that had been ruled by Parkash Singh Badal and his son Sukhbir Singh Badal for two terms. While anti-incumbency is certainly one of the reasons for the Congress’s victory, one cannot take away from the strategy and campaigning that former chief minister Captain Amarinder Singh has put in. CATCH – Assembly Election Results 2017 LIVE News Updates
Captain Singh had been sidelined by the Congress party for a long time after the party faced defeat in 2007. In 2012, Congress depended more on party Vice President Rahul Gandhi than Captain Singh in fighting the Assembly elections. However, this election the party managed to get Captain Singh back to the forefront and thereafter, it was Captain Singh’s call as to how the campaigning shapes for the party in Punjab. WATCH – Assembly Election Results 2017 LIVE Streaming
Captain Amarinder Singh made sure it was he who dictates what’s going in Punjab and not Congress Vice President Rahul Gandhi even as he continues to maintain that the big decisions are taken by the ‘party high command’. Punjab saw less of Rahul Gandhi and more of Amarinder Singh this election. It was the right decision to let the regional leader take care of the campaign in Punjab since he could touch the grassroots and connect with the people more effectively. CATCH – Uttar Pradesh Election Results 2017 LIVE Updates
Even when Rahul Gandhi spoke in Punjab, he made sure Captain Singh figured in his speeches. His Punjab speeches ere also kept short and to the point unlike UP where he campaigned aggressively. The results in UP clearly show how that has turned out for the party. Captain Singh also got former BJP leader Navjot Singh Sidhu to the party and as the results go for the Amritsar East seat, this has proven gto be the right decision for the party. WATCH – Uttar Pradesh Election Results 2017 LIVE Streaming
In many ways, the Punjab election serves as a lesson for the Congress that needs to realise how important it is for theb party to move away from the Rahul-Sonia coterie and get effective regional leaders at the forefront. While this is not the case with the BJP with the Narendra Modi wave still prevalent, it is foolish for the Congress to run Rahul as a parallel for Modi. The Assembly elections in five states of UP, Uttarakhand, Punjab, Manipur and Goa have made it clear that the Congress has no effective national leader that can play the party’s ‘Modi’ in every state. Hence, it desperately needs to focus on strong and effective regional leaders and let them work independently.