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Karamjit Kaur and Sushil Kumar   

Congress Gears Up To Clinch Jalandhar Lok Sabha Seat

While all political parties are focused on Karnataka assembly elections mid-week, there is one Lok Sabha by-elections that is being held the same day that has gone completely below the radar. Yes, it is the by-election to the Jalandhar Lok Sabha seat. It has become a high-stake battle for the ruling AAP which lost Sangrur Lok Sabha bypolls last year. AAP is understandably eager to win the Jalandhar Lok Sabha seat as it is being seen as a curtain raiser to the 2024 Lok Sabha elections. To secure Jalandhar, AAP has fielded former Congress MLA Sushil Kumar Rinku, hours after he jumped ship. For some reason, however, Congress feels comfortable and confident that it will clinch the Jalandhar seat as it is banking on the legacy of its two-time MP Santokh Singh Chaudhary who died during Rahul Gandhi’s Bharat Jodo Yatra. It has fielded his wife, academician Karamjit Kaur Chaudhary, as candidate from Jalandhar. Karamjit Chaudhary’s son Vikramjit Singh Chaudhary is the sitting MLA from Phillaur (reserved) assembly constituency, the home turf of the Chaudhary family in Jalandhar. “We are feeling confident about a Congress win not only because of the sympathy factor. It is also because everyone is working for the Congress”, said Khadoor Sahib MP Jasbir Singh Gill. Jalandhar has been a Congress stronghold since 1999. Congress sources say at present the mood against AAP is so much in Punjab that even the SAD-BSP alliance could emerge as first runner up.