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Badal sweeps Delhi gurdwara elections.

LED by Punjab deputy chief minister Sukhbir Singh Badal, Shiromani Akali Dal ( Badal) swept the Delhi Sikh Gurdwara Management Committee ( DSGMC) elections on Wednesday clinching 37 of 46 seats.

SAD will take control of the Gurdwara management in the city from the Congress backed Paramjit Singh Sarna of the Delhi Akali Dal ( DAD).

Sarna, who tasted defeat after 10 years of continuous ruling, lost his Punjabi Bagh seat to Manjinder Singh Sirsa of SAD by the highest margin of 4,554 votes.

DAD claimed eight seats against its current strength of 27 seats.

Apart from SAD and DAD, the only winner was Delhi MLA Tarvinder Singh Marwah who's newly- floated party managed to win the posh Defence Colony ward. Marwah, the Jungpura MLA constituted an outfit Kendriya Sri Guru Singh Sabha which fought for 13 seats.

A woman candidate emerged victorious from Vasant Vihar. Daljeet Kaur Khalsa ( SAD- Badal) won by a margin of 838 votes.

The gurdwara election result gains significance because Delhi is set to go for assembly elections at the end of this year.

While the SAD is a traditional ally of the BJP, the DAD led by Sarna enjoys Congress support.

Considering the importance of the poll outcome, Badal took personal interest and for the last one month was camping in the city along with the party leaders.

The election result also holds importance due to a sizeable number of Sikh population in the city. According to an estimate, there are around one million Sikhs in Delhi. Apart from managing gurdwaras, DSGMC runs 39 educational institutions which consist of schools, colleges, and technical institutes.

It also runs three hospitals. It has an annual budget of about ` 150 crore.

While Sarna accepted defeat, SAD president Sukhbir Singh Badal was upbeat and said the result is an indication that people want change. " People are fed up with the Congress government, now they want change," Badal said.

" Sarna was working like an agent of Congress. He also challenged Akal Takht on many occasions. There was charges of corruption also which worked against him," he added.

Manjeet Singh G. K., president of SAD, Delhi said this is the beginning of end of the Congress government. " Days of Sheila Dikshit in the city are over. Sarna also told people to forget the 1984 riots and people did not accept that," he added.

Hundreds of Sikh leaders gathered at the Badal residence in the Capital to celebrate the victory.

THE BIG CONTEST

SAD led by Sukhbir Singh Badal grabbed 37 seats out of 46

Paramjit Singh Sarna of Delhi Akali Dal had to bite the dust as his party could win only 8 seats against its earlier tally of 27 seats

Sarna, who tasted defeat after 10 years, lost his seat to Manjinder Singh Sirsa of SAD by a margin of 4,554 votes

DSGMC runs 39 educational institutions including schools, colleges, and technical institutes

DSGMC runs 14 Guru Harkrishan Public schools in the city which are situated in posh localities of the city including Vasant Vihar

DSGMC has an annual budget of about ` 150 crore

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Publication:Mail Today (New Delhi, India)
Geographic Code:9INDI
Date:Jan 31, 2013
Words:530
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