In run-up to Punjab panchayat polls, Congress groups at loggerheads in villageshttps://indianexpress.com/article/india/in-run-up-to-punjab-panchayat-polls-congress-groups-at-loggerheads-in-villages-5503285/

In run-up to Punjab panchayat polls, Congress groups at loggerheads in villages

Two security personnel were injured as bricks were thrown during clashes between the two groups inside the polytechnic college campus.

In run-up to Punjab panchayat polls, Congress groups at loggerheads in villages
Supporters of Sukjeet Kaur stage a dharna on Kotkapura-Bathinda road in Jaiton on Wednesday after she alleged that her nomination papers were snatched. (Express photo)

While Opposition parties AAP and SAD are complaining of problems during filing of nomination papers for the forthcoming panchayat polls in Punjab, it is Congress versus Congress in many villages with Congress supporters even clashing with each other over the filing of nomination papers. One such incident happened in Jaiton constituency of Faridkot district Wednesday morning when Congress workers were accompanying a candidate, Sukhjit Kaur, for the filing of her nomination papers for the post of sarpanch in village Dhapai. However, Kaur’s papers were snatched away by yet another group of Congressmen at market committee office of Jaiton.

Kaur, in her complaint to the police, alleged that her nomination papers were snatched by few persons, who then ran away. Later, she along with her supporters staged a dharna on the Kotkapura-Bathinda road, which ended after an FIR was lodged against unknown persons. Tehsildar also promised her that he will help out in getting her nomination papers completed. The incident happened on last day of filing nomination papers.

In a similar case in village Naushera Pannua in Tarantaran district, two Congress groups clashed with each other over filing of nomination papers and even firing in air was reported on Tuesday. In Batala’s Aliwal village as well, shots were fired as two Congress groups took on each other Wednesday afternoon injuring one Congress candidate Gurwinder Singh. This clash was also over filing of nomination papers.

In Ferozepur’s Ghall Khurd police station, an FIR was lodged against nine persons for snatching nomination papers and even damaging car of one Karaj Singh. This incident had happened on Tuesday. A video of village Gajniwala Dhanian of Ferozepur has also gone viral in which two groups are attacking each other within government senior seconadary school of Mamdot and even here as well issue is of nomination papers to be filed for the above said village. These two Congress groups clashed on Tuesday and sources revealed that later they were called to the office of Cabinet Minister Rana Sodhi, who is MLA of the area.

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In this clash, one Mangal Singh was injured. When asked about the reason of clashes among Congress workers, Rana Sodhi said,”Minor clashes happened at a few places as workers are over excited and are over enthusiastic to be part of the government. Congress wave is still there in the state. However, I am trying to get their differences resolved as both groups are supporting me. Compromises are also being done in many villages.”

Mohd Sadiq, constituency in-charge from Jaiton where dharna took place Thursday, said,”So far nominations are peaceful in my area. One incident happened and it was resolved. It is a democracy and everyone has the right to contest polls and moreover it is a tendency of the powerful to snub the weak. But police is taking due action against the culprits and papers of Sukhjit Kaur have been filled again.”

AAP and BJP, meanwhile, had complaints against the administration. Leader of Opposition Harpal Singh Cheema said, “We got complaints from many parts of Punjab that officers were not giving NoCs to candidates. We got plenty of complaints from Sangrur where I had to intervene.”

BJP candidate Paramjeet Kaur complained that her nomination file was snatched from her by one Gurcharan Singh, who is from Congress when she came to file nomination papers at government polytechnic college in Ferozepur on Wednesday. Two security personnel were injured as bricks were thrown during clashes between the two groups inside the polytechnic college campus.