APART FROM a couple of stray incidents of violence in which two persons were injured, the Doaba region witnessed peaceful elections in 23 local bodies including two municipal corporations, municipal councils and nagar panchayats (NPs), recording a turnout of over 71 per cent.
The Doaba region comprises of Jalandhar, Kapurthala, Nawanshahr and Hoshiarpur districts. Among the four districts, Jalandhar recorded the highest polling with 73.29 per cent. Allegations and counter allegations were the order of the day among the various political parties. There are a total 360 wards in Doaba region.
Kapurthala district recorded 69.9 per cent turnout, Nawanshahr recorded 69.71 per cent and Hoshiarpur recorded 72 per cent. In Jalandhar, the number of women voters was 4 per cent higher than male voters.
Class II and Class III local bodies have witnessed highest polling in Doaba region.
A visit to various booths of the Doaba region revealed lack-lustre turnout till 2:30 pm between 50-52 per cent. In the late hours, the turnout began to rise.
In Sultanpur Lodhi municipal committee election, two Akali workers were injured in a clash between Congress and Akali workers around an hour before polling wrapped up. Sources said supporters of Congress fired shots in the air as Akali and Congress supporters came face to face in ward number 1 at a booth near BDPO office.
Stone-pelting followed. According to Akalis, Congress supporters wanted to capture the booth, while Congress leaders said police had closed the gate of the booth before the end of the polling process at the behest of Akali leaders, which led to the clash.
One of the injured has been identified as Pipal Singh, who was hit on the head with a stone. He was rushed to hospital immediately and now is out of danger.
Congress MLA from Sultanpur Lodhi Navtej Singh Cheema said that Akali supporters pelted stones at Congress supporters when they objected to closing of the main gate of the booth before the end of polling time and also alleged that the vehicle of his PA was also smashed.
Akali leader Sajjan Singh Cheema alleged that he called police at around 3 pm as supporters of Congress party were gathering and may resort to some untoward incident like booth capturing, but police did not listen to him.
SSP Kapurthala Kanwardeep Kaur said that they are verifying the incident and will take action accordingly.
Elections for 49 out of 50 wards of Kapurthala municipal corporation and 12 out of 13 wards in Sultanpur Lodhi municipal council remained peaceful.
In Hoshiarpur, the vehicle of BJP district president Sanjiv Minhas was attacked by farmers’ sympathisers in Garhdiwal municipal committee while he was sitting at the office of the BJP Yuva Morcha as protesters asked him to leave the place but he did not leave. Later, both sides started shouting slogans against each other and when Minhas raised the slogan of ‘PM Modi Zindabad’, the protesters allegedly attacked his vehicle.
In Jalandhar, 80.89%, 80.11%, 76.45%, 75.87%, 72.22%, 72.08%, 71.75% and 68.24% polling was recorded at Alawalpur, Nurmahal, Lohian Khas, Mehatpur, Nakodar, Kartarpur, Adampur and Phillaur MCs and NPs, respectively.