Prestige of Amarinder Singh, Sukhbir Singh Badal is at stake in Moga bye-poll
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Prestige of both-President of Punjab Congress Committee Capt Amarinder Singh and State's Deputy Chief Minister, Sukhbir Singh Badal is at a stake in Moga by election that goes to polls on February 23.
A win for Shiromani Akali Dal would further catapult Badal junior as a tall leader as he is credited with victory in Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee elections on the heels win in Punjab Assembly polls. For Amarinder who is under attack from some state party leaders, a Congress win would be a weapon to silence his critics.
Capt Amarinder Singh admitted that "Moga will play a decisive role in ushering in political change in Punjab". However, Sukhbir Singh Badal who is considered master strategist has surprised even Congress leaders by roping in Jagroop Singh Takhtupura, who was the major contender for the party ticket from this constituency. Others to desert Congress party and join Shiromani Akali Dal include former member Improvement Trust Moga Sakattar Singh and his supporters.
Jagroop Singh Takhtupura belongs to a traditional Congress family and was considered as a close aide of Captain Amrinder Singh. Takhtupura had held the positions of Secretary Punjab Pradesh Congress, Delegate Punjab Pradesh Congress, Chairman Market Committee Badhini, Block Samittee Member and President Truck Union Moga. This was said to be the major below to the Congress candidate Vijay Sathi, who is pitted against SAD-BJP candidate Joginder Pal Jain. Badal said that with this desertion the Congress campaign for Moga ended virtually.
He said that Congress leaders from all the districts were making beeline to join Akali Dal as they were totally frustrated, disheartened and demoralized with their leaders fighting their own ego battles leaving party workers in lurch. He said that Shiromani Akali Dal was all set to register a record margin victory in the Moga by-poll.