New Delhi, May 31: The Shahkot Assembly by-election results will be declared on Thursday. The counting of votes will begin at 8 AM and the first trends are expected to be out by 8.30 AM. While the main contest is said to be between the ruling Congress and opposition Shiromani Akali Dal, the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) has made it a three-cornered contest by fielding its candidate. Also Read - Major Setback For Congress in Gujarat as 2 Party MLAs Resign Ahead of Rajya Sabha Polls
While the SAD is striving to retain its pocket borough from where Ajit Singh Kohar was elected five-times, the results for the ruling Congress in Punjab is being seen as a barometer for the popularity of the 14-month-old Amarinder Singh dispensation. Also Read - Sonia Gandhi Laments Plight of Migrants Amid Lockdown, Accuses Centre of Turning Deaf Ears to Their Pain
The AAP, which faced a humiliating defeat in the Gurdaspur Lok Sabha bypoll and civic polls, is desperately looking for a victory in Shahkot. The Congress is confident of maintaining the winning momentum by wresting the seat from rival SAD. Also Read - 'Will Defeat Coronavirus Under CM Thackeray's Leadership': Maharashtra Minister Raut Slams Centre, BJP | Watch
The Assembly seat fell vacant following the demise of sitting Akali Dal legislator Ajit Singh Kohar in February. Kohar, a former minister, was elected five times from this seat. His son Naib Singh Kohar has been fielded by the Akali Dal.
On May 28, polling was held peacefully in Shahkot with over 73 per cent voting reported till 7 PM. Electors turned up in a big way to exercise their franchise in hot weather. Speaking to reporters, Punjab Chief Electoral Officer SS Karuna Raju said that the vote percentage was 73 till 7 PM. The polling in the Assembly election in February last year on this seat was 78.6 per cent. During the by-poll, the opposition party had also accused the Congress of misusing official machinery against political opponents.