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Journalism of Courage

The House of Punjab: The giant slayer of Malwa

AAP MLA Gurmeet Singh Khuddian proved to be a giant slayer when he defeated five-time CM Parkash Singh Badal.

khuddianAAP's Gurmeet Singh Khudian after winning against the five time CM Parkash Singh Badal from Lambi Constituency in Mukatsar sahib. (Express Photo by Gurmeet Singh/File)

Born into a political family—his father Jagdev Singh Khuddian was a former Akali leader—Gurmeet remained on various posts in Shiromani Akali Dal and remained market committee chairman as well. His father Jagdev Singh contested the parliamentary elections from Faridkot on SAD (Amritsar) ticket in 1989, and won the election with a margin of more than 1.5 lakh votes.

However, on December 28 that year, he suddenly went missing. Later, his body was fished out of Rajasthan canal on January 2. To date, his death remains a mystery.

Gurmeet joined Congress in 2004 , and remained president of district Congress committee of Muktsar for five years. In 2017, he was the covering candidate of former Punjab CM Capt Amarinder Singh from Lambi. But in July 2021, he left Congress to join AAP, on the plea that he was being sidelined by the party. He proved to be a giant slayer when he defeated five-time CM Parkash Singh Badal.

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A day in life: Khuddian rises early with the sun and starts meeting people in his home office at Khuddian village 8 am onwards. ‘’I am home till 10.30 am after which I step out as per my social commitments.” Gurmeet says he makes it a point to stay in touch with people. “Be it a bhog or marriage, I make it a point to visit my constituents. I also call on them when they are ill.’’ This monsoon, Jagmeet has been spending considerable time in the fields. “Villages are facing water-logging and there was flood-like situation in over 40,000 acres after a heavy rainfall on July 15…The CM has ordered girdawari after a visit on July 29.’’ Gurmeet calls it a day late in the evening. He says his son and nephew also tend to the people when he is away as he doesn’t want them to face any problem in government offices.

Work accomplished: The MLA says as of now he is busy getting relief for farmers of flood affected villages, many of whom have lost all their crop. “I have come to the rescue of thousands whose work was getting delayed due to one reason or the other. Often, they don’t know the working of government offices and the formalities involved, we are here to assist them.”

Work in progress: I don’t believe in getting foundation stones laid in the constituency, says Gurmeet. “I have plans to set up agro-based industry in my area to generate employment for people. In addition, I also have plans to add health facilities in the constituency along with better schools. The recent floods were caused by the poor design of water channels laid by previous governments.’’

Challenges: “My challenge is to give a new look to my constituency which was the citadel of former Punjab CM Parkash Singh Badal for decades. I want to show people how development is done.’’


Controversies: Lambi constituency remained in controversy soon after AAP came into power when protesting farmers demanding compensation for damaged cotton crop were cane-charged outside the Lambi tehsil office.

First published on: 16-09-2022 at 06:38 IST
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