Warhorse Badal, son Sukhbir beat incumbency 1st ti
Assembly Elections
Warhorse Badal, son Sukhbir beat incumbency 1st ti
Last Updated: Tuesday, March 06, 2012, 17:07
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Chandigarh: Shiromani Akali Dal created history on Tuesday to become the first party ever to retain power in Punjab bucking the anti-incumbency factor with Parkash Singh Badal, the grand old man of the state politics, and his son Sukhbir Singh leading the charge.

And Parkash Singh Badal, who his party says is 84 while his opponents put him on the wrong side of the nineties, will have another feather on his pack as the warhorse could become Chief Minister of the agrarian state for the fifth time.

Punjab was carved out of Haryana in 1966.

Soaking in the historic victory, the ageing SAD patron maintained that the party's core committee will take the decision to choose its leader though Sukhbir said his father will be the party's chief ministerial candidate.

Apart from fighting incumbency, the SAD in alliance with BJP also faced challenges after the party was accused of corruption and nepotism before dashing the hopes of Congress's Amarinder Singh to come back to power.

If the SAD-BJP alliance decides to have Badal senior as the Chief Minister, he would be in the post for the record fifth time. He headed full two five-year terms from 1997 and 2007. His other terms were in 1977-1980 and 1970-71.

Badal Sr has given the credit for the alliance victory to Sukhbir, who succeeded his father as party President in January 2008 and became deputy Chief Minister a year later making it the first case of a father and son sharing the two top posts in the government.

Parkash Singh Badal had unilaterally in January 2009 announced that Sukhbir would become Deputy Chief Minister taking the alliance partner BJP in the state by surprise. But the veteran politician that Badal Senior is, he had taken the senior leadership of the saffron party into confidence to make it a smooth sailing for his only son.

Armed with an MBA degree from the USA, 50-year-old Sukhbir had on January 31, 2008 become the youngest Akail Dal leader to head the ruling SAD- -a party considered by most as traditional and sticking to orthodox and conventional norms.


First Published: Tuesday, March 06, 2012, 17:07



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