Punjab Assembly Elections 2017

The Election Commission of India has declared that polling will be held in Punjab in a single phase on February 4, 2017. Results will be declared on March 11, 2017. The ruling SAD-BJP government, led by Chief minister Parkash Singh Badal, will face voters five years after coming back to power in 2012. Evidently, there is going to be an intensive political activity in the state in the run-up to the elections when voters cast their vote.

The political contest in Punjab has been bipolar for the most part until now with the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) and the Congress as the two main contenders. In the 2011 assembly elections, Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal’s estranged nephew Manpreet Singh Badal launched the People’s Party of Punjab. The Akali Dal (Longowal), another breakaway outfit of the Shiromani Akali Dal, was launched by Surjit Singh Barnala in 2004. The Lok Bhalai Party was launched by Balwant Singh Ramoowalia in 2009. However, these regional parties have remained on the fringes without making any noticeable impact in the state assembly elections so far.


As the SAD-BJP combine completes two consecutive terms in the state, there is a palpable degree of anti-incumbency sentiment among voters. Though the Congress is the main opposition, voters are not open to seeing it as a favourable alternative.

Emergence of AAP in Punjab

Meanwhile, a third contender has been fast gaining ground in the state after a worthy performance in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections. The Aam Aadmi Party got an encouraging response in Punjab when all four of its candidates won in their maiden elections. In fact, Punjab was the only state where the AAP won all the four seats it contested from.

As Punjab braces for Assembly elections next year, the youth in most of Punjab’s districts is inclined to go for AAP. Arvind Kejriwal has been the face of the AAP in Punjab till now though a search is on to get a suitable chief ministerial candidate. The party is actively working on building its voter base with the help of volunteers.

About Punjab Elections

The erstwhile Patiala and East Punjab States Union was formed on 15 July 1948 by merging eight princely states of East Punjab. The state legislature was bicameral, comprising the Vidhan Sabha (lower house) and Vidhan Parishad (upper house). In1956, the state was reorganised and renamed Punjab. The strength of the Vidhan Parishad of the newly formed state was enhanced from 40 seats to 46 and then 51 in 1957.

Punjab was trifurcated in 1966 to form Haryana, Himachal Pradesh and the present-day Punjab. The Vidhan Parishad was reduced to 40 seats and the Vidhan Sabha was expanded to 104 seats. The Vidhan Parishad was abolished on 1 January 1970. Therefore, Punjab has a unicameral legislature now.

The Punjab legislative assembly, or the Vidhan Sabha, has 117 members today. These members are elected directly from 117 single-member constituencies of the state. A term of the Legislative Assembly lasts five years unless dissolved earlier.

The current governor of Punjab is Kaptan Singh Solanki. Charanjit Singh Atwal is the Speaker of the Assembly while Dinesh Singh is the Deputy Speaker. Chief minister Parkash Singh Badal is the leader of the house while Sunil Kumar Jakhar of Congress is the main opposition leader. The Assembly meets at Vidhan Bhavan in Chandigarh.

State Legislative Assembly of Punjab

Punjab has a unicameral legislature with 117 seats, with a term of five years. It is headed by the Chief Minister. The current speaker of the house is Charanjit Sigh Atwal. The Legislative Assembly was first summoned in 1937 and post independence of India, the state had a bicameral legislature until a unicameral legislature was established in 1970. In the last election in 2012, the SAD won 56 seats, the INC won 46, the BJP won 12 and the three remaining seats were won by independent candidates.

Issues in the State

There are a number of issues plaguing the state at present, prime among which are corruption, unemployment, drug addiction and receding water tables that may pose a serious threat to the state’s agriculture. Revival of agriculture is a key issue which no political party has adequately addressed till now. Since Punjab is known as the granary and the bread basket of India, its looming crisis in agriculture is not just a concern for the state, but the entire nation. According to studies, water levels have dropped by 10 metres since 1973 and the rate of decline is intensifying.

Creating employment opportunities and tapping the human capital are also two other challenges that the state must deal with in order to check the rising menace of drug addiction among the youth.

Facts About Punjab's Polity

Parliamentary Constituencies13
Assembly Constituencies 117
Ruling PartyShiromani Akali Dal ( BJP Alliance)
Opposition PartyIndian National Congress
Chief MinisterShri Parkash Singh Badal
GovernorShri V.P. Singh Badnore
Chief Electoral OfficerShri V.K Singh, I.A.S.
AddressSCO 29-30, Sector 17E ,Chandigarh - 160017

Punjab Assembly Election 2017 Dates

Poll Event Dates
Date of Notification 11.01.2017 (WED)
last Date of Making Nomination18.01.2017 (WED)
Scrutiny of Nominations 19.01.2017 (THU)
Withdrawal of Candidature21.01.2017 (SAT)
Date of Poll04.02.2017 (SAT)
Date of Counting 11.03.2017 (SAT)
Date of Completion 15.03.2017 (WED)

List of Chief Ministers of Punjab

Punjab has been led by fifteen different Chief Ministers, the first being Gopi Chand Bhargave (INC), who assumed office on 15 August 1947. The longest-serving Chief Minister is Parkash Singh Badal (SAD), who served for fifteen years in total.
S. No.Chief MinisterFromToParty Name
1Parkash Singh Badal[4]Mar 1, 2007PresentShiromani Akali Dal
2Amarinder SinghFeb 26, 2002Mar 1, 2007Indian National Congress
3Parkash Singh Badal[3]Feb 12, 1997Feb 26, 2002Shiromani Akali Dal
4Rajinder Kaur BhattalJan 21, 1996Feb 11, 1997Indian National Congress
5Harcharan Singh BrarAug 31, 1995Jan 21, 1996Indian National Congress
6Beant SinghFeb 25, 1992Aug 31, 1995Indian National Congress
7President's ruleJun 11, 1987Feb 25, 1992 
8Surjit Singh BarnalaSep 29, 1985Jun 11, 1987Shiromani Akali Dal
9President's ruleOct 10, 1983Sep 29, 1985 
10Darbara SinghJun 6, 1980Oct 10, 1983Indian National Congress
11President's ruleFeb 17, 1980Jun 6, 1980 
12Parkash Singh Badal[2]Jun 20, 1977Feb 17, 1980Shiromani Akali Dal
13President's ruleApr 30, 1977Jun 20, 1977 
14Zail SinghMar 17, 1972Apr 30, 1977Indian National Congress
15President's ruleJun 14, 1971Mar 17, 1972 
16Parkash Singh BadalMar 27, 1970Jun 14, 1971Shiromani Akali Dal
17Gurnam Singh [2]Feb 17, 1969Mar 27, 1970Shiromani Akali Dal
18President's ruleAug 23, 1968Feb 17, 1969 
19Lachhman Singh GillNov 25, 1967Aug 23, 1968Shiromani Akali Dal
20Gurnam SinghMar 8, 1967Nov 25, 1967Shiromani Akali Dal
21Giani Gurmukh Singh MussafirNov 1, 1966Mar 8, 1967Indian National Congress
22President's ruleJul 5, 1966Nov 1, 1966 
23Ram KishanJul 7, 1964Jul 5, 1966Indian National Congress
24Gopi Chand Bhargava[3]Jun 21, 1964Jul 6, 1964Indian National Congress
25Pratap Singh KaironJan 23, 1956Jun 21, 1964Indian National Congress
26Bhim Sen Sachar [2]Apr 17, 1952Jan 23, 1956Indian National Congress
27President's ruleJun 20, 1951Apr 17, 1952 
28Gopi Chand Bhargava[2]Oct 18, 1949Jun 20, 1951Indian National Congress
29Bhim Sen SacharApr 13, 1949Oct 18, 1949Indian National Congress
30Gopi Chand BhargavaAug 15, 1947Apr 13, 1949Indian National Congress

List of Governors of Punjab

The Governor of Punjab is the ceremonial head of the state of Punjab and the Administrator of the Chandigarh Union Territory. He is elected by the President of India. Punjab has had 32 Governors, the first being Chandulal Madhavlal Trivedi, who assumed office in 1947. The current Governor is Shivraj Patil, who took office on 22 January 2010.
S.No.Name of GovernorFromTo
1Shri V.P. Singh BadnoreAug 17, 2016Incumbent
2Prof. Kaptan Singh SolankiJan 21, 2015Aug 17, 2016
3Shivraj PatilJan 22, 2010Jan 21, 2015
4General Sunith Francis RodriguesNov 16, 2004Jan 22, 2010
5Akhlaqur Rahman KidwaiNov 3, 2004Nov 16, 2004
6Om Prakash VermaMay 8, 2003Nov 3, 2004
7Lieutenant General J. F. R. JacobNov 27, 1999May 8, 2003
8Lieutenant General B.K.N. ChhibberSep 18, 1994Nov 27, 1999
9Sudhakar Panditrao KurdukarJul 10, 1994Sep 18, 1994
10Surendra NathAug 7, 1991Jul 9, 1994
11General Om Prakash MalhotraDec 18, 1990Aug 7, 1991
12Virendra VermaJun 14, 1990Dec 18, 1990
13Nirmal MukarjiDec 8, 1989Jun 14, 1990
14Siddharta Shankar RayApr 2, 1986Dec 8, 1989
15Shankar Dayal SharmaNov 26, 1985Apr 2, 1986
16Hokishe SemaNov 14, 1985Nov 26, 1985
17Arjun SinghMar 14, 1985Nov 14, 1985
18Kershasp Tehmurasp SatarawalaJul 3, 1984Mar 14, 1985
19Bhairab Dutt PandeOct 10, 1983Jul 3, 1984
20Anant Prasad SharmaFeb 21, 1983Oct 10, 1983
21S.S. SandhawaliaFeb 7, 1983Feb 21, 1983
22Marri Chenna ReddyApr 21, 1982Feb 7, 1983
23Aminuddin Ahmad KhanAug 26, 1981Apr 21, 1982
24Jaisukh Lal HathiSep 24, 1977Aug 26, 1981
25Ranjit Singh NarulaSep 1, 1977Sep 24, 1977
26Mahendra Mohan ChoudhryMay 21, 1973Sep 1, 1977
27D. C. PavateOct 16, 1967May 21, 1973
28Mehar SinghJun 1, 1967Oct 16, 1967
29Dharma ViraJun 27, 1966Jun 1, 1967
30Sardar Ujjal SinghSep 1, 1965Jun 26, 1966
31Hafiz Muhammad IbrahimMay 4, 1964Sep 1, 1965
32Pattom Thanu PillaiOct 1, 1962May 4, 1964
33Narahar Vishnu GadgilSep 15, 1958Oct 1, 1962
34Sir Chandeshwar Prasad Narayan SinghMar 11, 1953Sep 15, 1958
35Sir Chandulal Madhavlal TrivediAug 15, 1947Mar 11, 1953

List of Cabinet Ministers of Punjab

Name of MinsitersMinistries
S. Parkash Singh Badal Chief MinisterPersonnel, General Administration, Co-operation, Science Technology & Environment, Vigilance, Civil Aviation
S. Sukhbir Singh Badal, Deputy Chief MinisterHome, Governance Reforms, Housing and Urban Development, Excise & Taxation, Investment Promotion, Sports and Youth Services Welfare, Power
Sh. Bhagat Chunni LalForest & Willd Life, Labour
S. Adaish Partap Singh KaironFood, Civil Supplies & Consumer Affairs, Information and Technology, Food Processing
S. Ajit Singh KoharTransport, Legal & Legislative Affairs, Elections, Employment Generation and Training
S. Gulzar Singh RanikeAnimal Husbandry Fisheries and Dairy Development, Welfare of SCs & Bcs
Sh. Madan Mohan MittalIndustries and Commerce, Technical Education & Industrial Training, Parliamentary Affairs
S. Parminder Singh DhindsaFinance & Planning, Institutional Finance and Banking, Programme Implementation
S. Sohal Singh ThandalJails, Tourism & Cultural Affairs, Archives & Museums, Printing & Stationery
S. Janmeja Singh SekhonP.W.D (B & R), Defence Services Welfare, Removal of Grievances and Welfare of Pensioners
Sh. Surjit Kumar JayaniHealth & Family Welfare, Social Security & Development of Women & Children
S. Tota Singh Agriculture, NRI Affairs
S. Bikram Singh MajithiaRevenue, Rehabilitation and Disaster Management, Information & Public Relations, Non Conventional Energy
S. Sikandar Singh MalookaRural Development & Panchayats
Sh. Anil JoshiLocal Government, Medical Education & Research
S. Surjit Singh Rakhra Water Supply & Sanitation, Higher Education & Languages
S. Sharanjit Singh DhillonIrrigation
Dr. Daljit Singh CheemaEducation

List of Rajya Sabha Members of Punjab

Name of MemberTerm Party
Shri Partap Singh BajwaApr 10, 2016 to Apr 9, 2022INC
Shri Balwinder Singh BhunderApr 10, 2016 to Apr 9, 2022SAD
Sardar Sukhdev Singh DhindsaApr 10, 2016 to Apr 9, 2022SAD
Shri Shamsher Singh DulloApr 10, 2016 to Apr 9, 2022INC
Shri Naresh GujralApr 10, 2016 to Apr 9, 2022SAD
Shri Shwait MalikJul 5, 2016 to Jul 4, 2022BJP
Smt. Ambika SoniJul 5, 2016 to Jul 4, 2022INC

Chief Electoral Officer Punjab

The Chief Electoral Officer of Punjab is Kusumjit Sidhu, who was appointed prior to the 2009 general election. She is an IAS officer from the 1979 Punjab cadre and has a Bachelor's degree in English, History and French as well as a Master's degree in History.

Lok Sabha Election Summary 2014

After the declaration of the results in Punjab no majority party has won clearly in the Lok Sabha polls. Four seats were bagged by Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) and Aam Aadmi Party (AAP). The state of Punjab has 13 Lok Sabha seats which have participated in several Lok Sabha polls so far. The state government in Punjab is headed by Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) party and Prakash Singh Badal is the present Chief Minister of the state. Besides, SAD, Indian National Congress (INC) and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Aam Aadmi Party are other leading parties in Punjab. In the 2014 Lok Sabha elections, the state took part for its 13 parliamentary seats, out of which four are reserved for Scheduled Castes. The Amritsar constituency has a These parties followed their campaign strategies and raised issues in Punjab like AAP emphasised on anti-corruption movement, BJP focused on development, and Congress centered around Right to Information (RTI). The exit polls and opinion polls predicted the INC and SAD will grab maximum number of seats in the elections.