Punjab Congress chief Navjot Singh Sidhu on Thursday congratulates the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) for sweeping Punjab Assembly polls and said that the voice of people (mandate) is the voice of God.
"The voice of the people is the voice of God. Humbly accept the mandate of the people of Punjab. Congratulations to Aap !!!," Sidhu tweeted.
The voice of the people is the voice of God …. Humbly accept the mandate of the people of Punjab …. Congratulations to Aap !!!— Navjot Singh Sidhu (@sherryontopp) March 10, 2022
Congress Punjab In-charge Harish Chaudhary took responsibility for the party's performance in Punjab.
"I take the responsibility for party's descent in these elections. However, mine or any other's resignation is party's internal matter," said Chaudhary.
As per the Election Commission, Aam Aadmi Party is leading in 91 seats on the 117 seat Punjab Assembly by 12:55 pm, followed by Congress (17) and Shiromani Akali Dal (6).
Sidhu himself was trailing from the Amritsar East seat by over 5,000 votes.
Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) candidate Jeevan Jyot Kaur is leading with 25,536 votes followed by Congress's Navjot Singh Sidhu on 20,334 votes and Shiromani Akali Dal's candidate Bikram Singh Majithia with 16,154 votes.
Shiromani Akali Dal's Sukhbir Singh Badal is also trailing by a margin of 11,165 votes from Aam Aadmi Party's Jagdeep Kamboj.
SAD's chief Prakash Singh Badal is also trailing from Lambi seat by a margin of 9,474 votes from Aam Aadmi Party's Gurmeet Singh Khudian.
In Patiala constituency, Aam Aadmi Party candidate Ajit Pal Singh Kohli defeated Punjab Lok Congress Party' founder and former Chief Minister Amarinder Singh with 19,873 votes.
Incumbent Chief Minister Charanjit Singh Channi is also trailing from both the seats he contested-- from Bhadaur seat by a margin of 22,843 votes from AAP's Labh Singh Ugoke and by 2,671 votes from Chamkaur Sahib.
As AAP wins Punjab, it will be the party's maiden victory in the state and a vast improvement from its performance in the 2017 elections when it had finished second behind Congress.
Congress went into the polls, battling factionalism and anti-incumbency. The party changed its Chief Minister in September last year even as the party's new state unit chief Navjot Singh Sidhu hinted about his own Chief Ministerial ambitions. Congress finally declared Charanjit Singh Channi as the first Dalit Chief Minister of Punjab, endorsing him for the Chief Ministerial face days before the polling on February 20.
The Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD), which had broken off the alliance with the BJP over the three farm laws that were eventually repealed, tied up with Bahujan Samaj Party for the Assembly elections.
It is the first time that the BJP fought on over 65 seats in Punjab. It tied up with former Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh's Punjab Lok Congress and SAD (Sanyukt) led by SS Dhindsa.
Punjab recorded an average voter turnout of 65.50 per cent on February 20 compared to over 77 per cent in 2017.