Chandigarh: The Shiromani Akali Dal made considerable gains in Malwa, where it doubled its tally and Doaba region in Punjab assembly elections though it suffered a
setback in the Majha belt with several of its stalwarts biting the dust.
Malwa region plays a decisive role in Punjab politics with 69 seats of 117-member house. In the region, Congress could muster only 31 seats as against 34 by SAD and two by the BJP.
The districts that fall in this region include Ferozepur, Muktsar, Faridkot, Moga, Ludhiana, Bathinda, Mansa, Sangrur, Patiala, Fatehgarh Sahib and Anandpur Sahib.
The SAD almost doubled its 2007 tally in Malwa making surprising gains despite the Congress hoping to repeat its 2007 performance on the strength of Dera Sacha Sauda support.
The Congress bagged 31 seats down by six. The performance of the BJP was not upto the expectations. It won only two seats as against five in 2007 polls.
The SAD-BJP combine managed to win just 16 of the 25 seats in the Majha belt as against 24 seats in 2007.
The Congress, which was plagued by the rebel factor, improved its tally from three to nine but it was far below expectation.
While the SAD won 11 of the 17 seats it contested, the BJP bagged five of the eight seats. In 2007, the BJP had won all its eight seats.
The Majha region comprises districts of Pathankot, Gurdaspur, Amritsar and Tarn Taran with 25 seats Once a Congress bastion, the Doaba region went the SAD-BJP
way giving the ruling alliance 16 of total 23 seats.
The region comprises Hoshiarpur, Kapurthala, Jalandhar and Nawanshahar. Out of total 23 seats, 11 went in the pocket of SAD, five to BJP and six to Congress.
The failure of Congress to play an effective role as an opposition, its inability to cash in on the anti-incumbency factor, internal bickering and differences over ticket
allocation worked to the party`s disadvantage.
In Malwa, the calculations of the SAD went wrong with heavyweights Prem Singh Chandumajra, Balwant Singh Ramoowalia, Hira Singh Gabaria, P S Gill, Gurdev Singh Badal and D S Guru ending up on the losing side.
In the Majha belt, the biggest setback for SAD was the defeat of its stalwart Ranjit Singh Brahmpura (four time MLA), Sewa Singh Sekhwan, Nirmal Singh Kahlon and Sucha Singh Langha.