Jalandhar West Bye-elections: Know the likely candidates from each party for the assembly seat

Jalandhar West Bye-elections nomination filling starts from today, the polls will take place on July 10

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The lead up to the Lok Sabha elections 2024 were full of political twists and turns with suprising developments regarding party politics surfacing every week. In such a shocker, the Jalandhar West MLA Sheetal Angural had resigned from his post in the legislative assembly in order to leave Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) for Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) along with sitting MP Sushil Rinku. However, the move proved to be a shot in the foot as BJP failed to win any seats from Punjab, with Sushil Rinku losing out to Congress Charanjit Channi in Jalandhar. Now Jalandhar West bye-elections schedule has been announced and the election process begins today i.e. June 14, 2024. 

These elections are important because of the results of Lok Sabha elections. Congress secured victory in 7 parliamentary constituencies and AAP trailed with just 3. AAP will be pushing hard for a win here as they didn’t get the result they were hoping for in the LS elections. BJP has a stronghold here and the MLA has been in BJP before. BJP will be looking for a win. Congress won here with a margin of 2.5 lakh votes, hence they will also be pushing as hard as they can for the victory. As the nomination begins today, parties are likely to announce their candidates soon. In such a situation, here are the prospective candidates from each of the major political parties in Punjab.

Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP):

Sheetal Angural:

BJP will be looking to bounce back from the crushing defeat by establishing strongholds in the assembly constituencies. Angural had resigned from Aam Aadmi Party and the post of MLA to join BJP. It is also believed that if everything goes well then only he will get the ticket.  Both Sheetal Angural and Sushil Rinku have been elected to the Legislative Assembly from Jalandhar West, and BJP garnered a significant amount of votes, trailing congress with just over 2000 votes.

Avinash Chander:

Avinash Chander was earlier in Akali Dal, but is now in BJP. He has been an MLA from Kartarpur and Phillaur. Avinash Chandra's business and old house are in Jalandhar West. Dr. B.R. Ambedkar had brought Avinash Chandra's ancestors to Jalandhar for the first time and he stayed in his house.

Sunita Rinku:

The name of Sushil Rinku's wife Sunita Rinku is also being discussed. Although this possibility is quite less. There is a cordial atmosphere between Riku and Angural family after three decades. Angural has fully helped Rinku in the parliamentary elections. In such a situation, Sunita Rinku herself would hardly stake claim in the by-election.


Surinder Kaur

Former Senior Deputy Mayor Surinder Kaur claims that a coordination committee was formed for the Lok Sabha elections in Strong West assembly constituency.  Senior Deputy Mayor Surinder Kaur is a key member of the committee. She is the biggest contender for the ticket from Congress. She has contested the civic elections from her ward area five times in a row and has held the post of State General Secretary in the party.

Pawan Kumar:

District Congress' senior vice-president and outgoing councilor Pawan Kumar has been vying for the ticket as well. He is considered to be an opponent of Sushil Rinku. He also wanted responsibility in the West in the Lok Sabha elections, but this did not happen due to opposition from the Congress leaders.

Ashwini Jangraal

Former Congress block chief Ashwini Jangraal, who became a close-aide to Channi by opposing Rinku, also wants to contest the assembly bye-elections. He was handling the work of Rinku during his tenure as the MLA from West constituency and after Rinku became MP, they parted ways due to differences of opinion. Being close to Rinku, Charanjit Singh Channi gave a chance to Ashwini Jangral in the West.

Aam Aadmi Party (AAP):

Robin Sampla

Youth leader Robin Sampla is also a strong option. You also have a strong option as a youth leader in the form of Robin Sampla. Robin Sampla, close to former Union Minister Vijay Sampla, left BJP and joined AAP just before the Lok Sabha elections. Robin Sampla has a strong base of youth. Along with politics, he is also running social activities.

Steven Kaler

AAP Jalandhar District President Steven Kaler is also among the possible candidates of AAP. Steven Kaler is originally a resident of West area and also runs a leather business in the same area. Steven Kaler was also considered a strong contender in the Lok Sabha elections, but the party had chosen Pawan Kumar Tinu, who had left the Akali Dal.

Mohinder Bhagat:

The claim of constituency in-charge Mohinder Bhagat is strong. During the Lok Sabha elections, AAP made Mohinder Bhagat in-charge of Jalandhar West constituency. His father Bhagat Chuni Lal was an MLA from Jalandhar West constituency and became a cabinet minister in the Akali-BJP government. Bhagat himself has been the board chairman in the Punjab government.

Pawan Kumar Tinu:

AAP could also likely place their bet on Pawan Kumar Tinu. Tinu managed to secure third place in the Lok Sabha elections, and enjoys significant influence in the Jalandhar West constituency. Hence, he is also a strong contender for the seat. Tinu is a former MLA from Adampur and had left SAD to join AAP.

Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD):

SAD faces a unique challenge as in the party is contesting without an alliance with BJP, and does not have a strong influence in the constituency by itself. SAD is going through a very difficult time since the last few elections. Akali Dal got less than three thousand votes in the parliamentary by-election. District head Kulwant Singh Mannan has resigned after the defeat in the parliamentary elections. The party has not even appointed any division in-charge in West constituency. The last assembly election was fought by BSP under the alliance and that candidate is now included in AAP. However, Akali Dal, seemingly not willing to go down without a fight, called its meeting on Tuesday, in which the defeat in the parliamentary elections will be discussed and the assembly by-elections will also be discussed. West Assembly seat is also a challenge for Akali Dal because of Mohinder Singh Kaypee, because Kaypee had left Congress and joined Akali Dal to the elections. West has been building the Kaypee family ever since. Earlier this seat was Jalandhar South from where the Kaypee family has won five elections on this seat.

Jalandhar West Bye-elections schedule:

Prospective candidates must file their nominations by June 21, 2024. The scrutiny of nomination papers will take place on June 24, 2024, ensuring all candidates meet the necessary eligibility criteria.

Candidates would be able to  withdraw their nomination papers on June 26, 2024. The bye-election polling is scheduled for July 10, 2024, and the counting of votes will be done on July 13, 2024. The entire election process will be completed by July 15, 2024.