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Filing of nomination papers for Punjab polls to begin tomorrow

The process of filing of nomination papers by candidates of different political parties contesting the February 4 Assembly polls in Punjab will begin on Wednesday.

The poll process will be notified on Wednesday, an election office spokesman said in Chandigarh on Tuesday. Candidates can file their nomination papers from Wednesday up till January 18.

While scrutiny of nomination papers will take place on January 19, the withdrawal of candidature can be done till January 21.

The polling will take place in a single phase on February 4, whereas the counting of votes will take place on March 11.

A high stake election will be held in the state where SAD-BJP will make an attempt to remain in power for the third term whereas Congress and new entrant Aam Aadmi Party will try to wrest power.

Punjab will witness a multi-cornered contest on all the 117 Assembly seats. While Congress is going alone on 117 seats, ruling Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) and its ally BJP will contest on 94 and 23 seats respectively.

A new entrant to Punjab Assembly elections, AAP has fielded its candidates on 110 seats and it’s ally Lok Insaaf Party (LIP) on seven.

Other political outfits in the fray include BSP, Apna Punjab Party (AAP), the Left comprising CPI and CPM, and Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD-Amritsar).

At stake will be the popularity of five-time chief minister Parkash Singh Badal and his deputy Sukhbir Singh Badal, Punjab Congress chief Amarinder Singh and AAP’s supremo Arvind Kejriwal.