August 26, 2021 7:44:30 am
Ahead of the crucial Punjab polls next year, Shiromani Akali Dal retained control of the Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee (DSGMC) by bagging 27 out of total 46 seats for which elections were held Sunday and results declared on Wednesday.
It is for the third time in a row that SAD has won DSGMC polls even as sitting gurdawar body president Manjinder Singh Sirsa lost from Punjabi Bagh segment to SAD (Delhi) candidate Harvinder Singh Sarna by a margin of over 500 votes.
SAD president Sukhbir Badal, at a press conference in Delhi thanked “Sikh sangat” for reposing faith in the party and announced that Sirsa would be nominated as a member of the DSGMC on behalf of the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee (SGPC). On appointment of new DSGMC president, he said the House would decide that in its meeting.
SAD (Delhi) led by Sarna brothers Paramjit Singh Sarna and Harvinder Singh Sarna won 14 seats. Another candidate who contested in alliance with SAD (Delhi) also won.
Jag Aasra Guru Ott (JAGO) party led by Manjit Singh GK won three seats. Independent candidate Tarvinder Singh Marwah won the Jangpura ward.
SAD got 40.27 per cent of the total votes polled, SAD (Delhi) 27.79 per cent and JAGO got 15.72 per cent votes, according to data issued by the Directorate of Gurdwara Elections.
Sukhbir hailed victory as “a forceful referendum of the Khalsa Panth in favour of the panthic identity and religious commitment of his party”.
He added: “Sikh sangat totally rejected the Congress backed and BJP-sponsored groups”.
The SAD president further said, “This is just the beginning of the storm which will sweep aside both the Congress and AAP in Punjab in the 2022 Assembly elections.”
A total of 312 candidates including 132 independents fought the elections conducted on Sunday. The voting had witnessed a low turnout of 37.27 per cent, officials said. The Punjab Bagh ward had recorded the highest percentage of voting of 54.10 percent, while it was lowest (25.18 per cent) in Sham Nagar, as per the directorate figures.
SAD had earlier won the DSGMC elections held in 2013 and 2017.