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HVK Archives: BJP-Akali does it again - Chandigarh Municipal Election

BJP-Akali does it again - Chandigarh Municipal Election - The Organiser

Pramod Kumar ()
22 December 1996

Title : BJP-Akali does it again - Chandigarh elections
Author : Pramod Kumar
Publication : The Organiser
Date : December 22, 1996

One of the most literate towns in the country has fully rejected
pseudo-secularism in the municipal corporation elections held recently.
Upsetting all pre-poll equations and predictions of a hung House coming to
power in Chandigarh Municipal Corporation the BJP won 13 seats out of the 20
elected seats to claim a thumping majority. Its ally, the Siromant Akali Dal
(Badal) won two seats. The BJP had contested 16 seats and four seats by the
SAD. In the 29-member house the election was held for 20 seats and the rest
have been nominated by the Governor.

Such was the dominance of the BJP that the Congress managed to get only one
seat with a thin margin. Harmohan Dhawan led Samajwadi Janata Party (SJP)
claimed three seats while one scat of Ward No. 14 has gone to an Independent.
All BJP candidates. with a fens, exceptions, defeated their nearest rivals by
a handsome margin. However, its loser Smt. Pushpa Lata, from Ward No. one
lost with a narrow margin.

Interestingly, all the candidates of United Front and Janata Dal, the party
of the Prime Minister of India, have lost their security deposits. Not only
the CPI and CPM were rejected by the voters but the 10 candidates of the
Congress too lost their security deposits. The CPI and the CPM had entered in
an alliance with the Janata Dal and the Congress respectively. The SJP also
suffered a big jolt in these elections with their State president having lost
to the SAD-BJP candidate in Ward No. 13.

In a joint press statement released in Chandigarh on December 9. the BJP
president of Chandigarh unit Shri Gian Chand Gupta and BJP NW from the town
Shri Satya Pal Jam thanked the voters of the Union Territory for reposing
full confidence in the BJP-SAD alliance by giving a comfortable majority in
the first municipal Corporation election of Chandigarh. The elected members
reiterated their pledge to provide a clean and corruption-free
administration. They said that the voters of Chandigarh had taught a lesson
to the Congress for its corrupt behaviour. opportunistic and anti-people
policies. The Chandigarh M.C. election shall serve as a 'gateway' to the
Punjab Assembly election, to be held in February next year. And that the
Punjab BJP-SAD alliance is going to sweep the Punjab Assembly polls, they

Questioning the contention of the UF-Congress leaders' claim about the
landslide victory of its alliance in LIP Rajya Sabha elections that people
favoured 'secular forces', the councillors asked comment on the BJP-SAD
victory now.

Talking to Organiser, Shri Narendra Modi, All India Secretary of the party,
who was in charge of the election said, the poll verdict was against the
policies of both the Central government of United Front and the State
Government of the Congress. He said the change in Congress leadership could
not help the party from its ruin. Shri Modi alleged that the State government
had violated the poll ethics and misused governmental machinery in the

Meanwhile, addressing a press conference in Bathinda the SAD president Shri
Prakash Singh Badal clarified that the BJP and the SAD would contest the
ensuing Assembly elections unitedly with a view to defeating the Congress.
He said the SAD's handshake with the BJP was final and there was no question
of backing out from this. He said it is natural that the two political
parties may have separate approach on certain issues. However, it clear that
both the parties had fought many battles together against the misrule of the
Congress in the past. The SAD chief said the BJP had protested against the
Delhi-riots in November 1984. Apart from this, the BJP was instrumental in
implementing Punjabi in Delhi etc. Both the parties had formed coalition
government in Punjab and had supported each other during many elections in
the past.

The vice-president of the BJP. Shri Madan Lal Khurana, while addressing media
persons in Jalandhar on December 8 said. the two parties will fight the
coming elections on a common minimum programme. For this purpose, a joint
two-member committee, comprising Shri Surjit Singh Barnala and Shri Balram
Das Tandon has been formed, he said. The two would specify the common points
from the manifestos of both the parties for inclusion inclusion in the common
minimum programme. This programme would be implemented by the SAD-BJP
coalition government to be formed after the elections. he added.

Another four-member joint committee has been formed which would decide on
seat adjustments between the two parties. Its members are Shri Sukhdev Singh
Dhindsa and Capt. Kanwaljit Singh from the SAD and from the BJP are Balram
Das Tandon and Shri Madan Mohan Mittal.

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