Tribune News Service
Ludhiana, May 23
The Indian National Congress (INC) has retained the Ludhiana Lok Sabha seat with Congress candidate and sitting MP Ravneet Singh Bittu polling 3,83,795 votes. Bittu trounced his nearest rival Simarjit Singh Bains of the Lok Insaaf Party, who was fielded as the Punjab Democratic Alliance candidate, by a margin of 76,372 votes.
Bains polled 3,07,423 votes. Akali Dal candidate Maheshinder Singh Grewal polled 2,99,435 votes, while AAP candidate Tejpal Singh Gill finished fourth with 15,945 votes.
Two-time MP Bittu has scored a hat-trick. In 2009, Bittu had won the Parliamentary election from the Anandpur Sahib Lok Sabha constituency, while in 2014 as the Congress candidate from the Ludhiana LS constituency by defeating AAP’s HS Phoolka by a margin of 19,709 votes.
In 2019, demonetisation remained a poll issue in Ludhiana. The Akali Dal that banked on the ‘Modi wave’ was placed at third position in the constituency.
The Ludhiana constituency comprising six urban and three rural Assembly segments had a total of 22 candidates in fray whose fate was decided by more than 10 lakh voters. Total votes counted were 10,47,025.
The Congress vote share in Ludhiana is 36.66 per cent, while that of the runner-up (PDA) is 29.36 per cent. Grewal’s vote percentage is 28.6.
In four urban Assembly segments of Ludhiana East, Ludhiana Central, Ludhiana West and Ludhiana North, the Congress got maximum number of votes. The rural Assembly segment, Jagraon, also witnessed pro-Congress vote.
Bains maintained his lead in Ludhiana South Assembly segment, where his brother and LIP leader Balwinder Bains is the MLA. He also got maximum votes from the Atam Nagar segment where he is the legislator. In the rural Assembly segments of Gill and Dakha, Bains got the maximum number of votes.
Comparison with 2014 polls
In the 2014 Lok Sabha polls, Congress candidate Ravneet Singh Bittu’s vote share was 27.3 per cent. Phoolka’s vote share was 25.51 per cent, while that of SAD candidate Manpreet Singh Ayali was 23.32 per cent. The vote share of Simarjit Singh Bains, who had contested as Independent in 2014, was 19.17 per cent.
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