The Progressive Democratic Alliance (PDA) partners have finalised their share in half of the total 13 Lok Sabha seats in Punjab, with a senior leader saying that all allies have been allotted one constituency seat each. The PDA comprises of five allies – Punjabi Ekta Party (PEP) Lok Insaaf Party (LIP), Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP), Shiromani Akali Dal (Taksali) and Punjab Manch.
“We have agreed on 50% of the seats at a meeting held Monday. The rest of the seats will be finalised in the next meeting, which is likely to take place next week,” said Sukhpal Singh Khaira, president, PEP.
Khaira refused to tell the location where the meeting was held of the meeting. However, sources in the PDA said it was held in Ludhiana where they also celebrated LIP chief Simarjeet Singh Bains’ birthday too. Bains is MLA from Atam Nagar constituency of Ludhiana. “We will release the list once all the 13 seats are finalized. However in Monday’s meeting, all alliance partners have got a share,” Khaira said, hinting that one each seat has been allotted to all the 5 alliance partners in Malwa, Majha and Doaba regions.
His supporters have asked Khaira to contest from Bathinda, while Bains had, in 2014, contested as an independent from Ludhiana parliamentary seat. SAD (Taksali) has a strong base in Majha and its president, Ranjit Singh Brahmpura, is sitting MP from Khadoor Sahib. Dr Dharmvira Gandhi, who heads the Punjab Manch, is sitting MP from Patiala. BSP has a strong base in Doaba.
Khaira ruled out the possibility of the Aam Aadmi Party joining the PDA. “AAP wanted an alliance with PEP and LIP and hence it did not work out. I don’t think, they will be joining this alliance in near future,” he said.