CHANDIGARH: All exit polls for Punjab predict a crushing defeat for the ruling Shiromani Akali Dal-Bharatiya Janata Party (SAD-BJP) alliance, which has been ruling the state since 2007, and point towards a close fight between the Congress and the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) with an edge to the former.
In the February 4 polls, the State witnessed a triangular contest between the SAD-BJP combine, the Congress and the AAP.
While the fate of the SAD-BJP combine seems sealed, for the Congress it is a do-or-die situation. The AAP, a new entrant, seems to have made deep inroads into Punjab politics.
The Congress is sure about staging a comeback with a comfortable majority in the State. Punjab Congress president and former chief minister Captain Amarinder Singh has already announced that this would be the last election in his political career.
He said he was optimistic that his party would attain a clear majority with 62-65 seats in its kitty. The exit polls were merely indicative of the positive trend in favour of the Congress but the actual results would be completely in favour of the party, he added.
Amarinder Singh also added that the people were evidently wary of experimenting with the AAP which had failed to prove its credentials as a serious player in the political arena.
The AAP is optimistic of forming the next government. “We are sure that our party will form the government with a thumping majority as people have voted for change,’’ said Manpreet Randhawa, spokesman for AAP.