After a gap of ten years, Shiromani Akali Dal (Badal) has wrested back control of Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee
(DSGMC), defeating the ruling Congress-backed dispensation.
SAD (Badal), supported by BJP, bagged 37 out of 46 seats while Congress-backed Shiromani Akali Dal (Delhi) claimed eight seats against its current strength of 27 seats.
While one seat went to Kendriya Sri Guru Singh Sabha (KSGSS), Dashmesh Seva Society
(DSS) failed to open its account in the election.
SAD (Delhi) chief Paramjit Singh Sarna lost by the highest margin of votes to SAD
(Badal)'s Manjinder Singh from Punjabi Bagh.
"While Sarna polled 4,552 votes, 9,006 votes went to Singh, the difference being 4,454 votes," said G P Singh, Director of the Directorate of Gurdwara Elections.
Congress downplayed the result of the polls, claiming the outcome will not have any bearing on Delhi assembly polls. Sikhs have a sizable presence in Delhi.
"Congress has nothing to do with the result of the DSGMC. It is a religious body of Sikh community and our party was not directly involved in the contest. That is why the party even did not stop MLA Tarvinder Singh Marwah from contesting the polls," Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit's Parliamentary Secretary Mukesh Sharma said.
BJP described the result as a "personal defeat for Dikshit and Minister In-charge of Gurudwara Affairs Arvinder Singh Lovely."
"The downfall of Congress had started in the municipal corporation polls last year. Now, with the defeat of the Congress-backed group in Gurudwara polls, the party must realise what's in store for it in the assembly polls," Delhi BJP chief Vijender Gupta said.
Bhupinder Singh Sabharwal of SAD (Delhi) representing ward number 30, Gandhi Nagar, had won uncontested.
The sole seat won by KSGSS went to its president and four-time MLA Tarvinder Singh Marwaha who defeated his nearest rival Tirath Singh of SAD (Delhi) in Defence Colony ward.
KSGSS had contested 17 seats which had an adverse impact on SAD (Delhi).
265 candidates were in the fray for election in 46 wards for which the voting took place on Jan 27.
One woman candidate emerged victorious from Vasant Vihar where Daljeet Kaur Khalsa
(SAD-Badal) won by a margin of 838 votes.
The lowest winning margin was in Rajouri Garden where Harpal Singh Kochhar, SAD (Delhi) won by a difference of mere 29 votes.
Sahib Pura was the largest of 46 wards, consisting of 49 polling stations.
As a next step, cooption of members will take place on February 13. The entire management committee, apart from 46 elected members, also contains nine co-opted members.
Apart from four head priests of four takhts, one member will be nominated by Shiromani Gurdwara Prabandhak Committee
(SGPC) while two others will be elected by draw of lots from amongst the presidents of registered Sikh Sabhas of Delhi.
Two remaining would be the ones elected from the 46 newly- elected members on the basis of proportional representation by means of single transferrable vote.
The election of the president of the management committee will be held within 15 days from February 13. A meeting will be called where the president will be elected.
The January 27 election had witnessed an overall voting of 42.37 per cent. Out of 412,810 electors registered on the voting list, 174,893 cast their votes.
Meanwhile, Punjab Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal and deputy chief minister Sukhbir Badal described the party's historic win in Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee
(DSGMC) elections as "victory of the Khalsa Panth."
Sukhbir, while thanking the Sikh community members of Delhi for their support, said here that "the party's victory is a reminder to rival Paramjit Singh Sarna that those who would stab in the back of Sikh community by hobnobbing with Congress, would be severely punished by them".
"The verdict should also teach a lesson to the Congress party that the Sikhs will never tolerate any interference in their religious affairs,"
Badal, who is also the patron of the party, said.
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