Chandigarh, February 13
All main parties try to get hold on the Malwa region, which has 69 seats. The leaders exude confidence of a sure win if they get majority seats in the Malwa region.
Geographically Punjab is divided into three parts – Malwa, Majha and Doaba. The State has 23 districts and each district has five segments. There are prominent areas like Ludhiana, Ferozpur, Batinda, Mansa, Patiala, Mohali in Malwa; Hoshiarpur, Kapurtala, Jalandhar, Nawan Shahar in Doaba; and Amritsar, Gurudaspur, Patankot, Taran Taran in Majha.
Since the day Punjab was partitioned, Malwa region politics rules Punjab. This was further reinforced after States’ redivision in 1966. Once Batinda was very underdeveloped area in Malwa but now it is one of the well developed areas and is one of the fastest growing city in the country with an international airport, oil refinery, universities, thermal power plants and so on.
It issue that Akalis and Badals have allotted most of the projects to Batinda and neglected other areas came in for a lot of criticism. Malwa leaders reportedly developed the area but I’d problems grew alongside too.
12 of the 15 chief ministers, who ruled Punjab, belong to Malwa. Prakash Singh Badal, Captain Amarinder Singh belong to Malwa only. Malwa has the credit of giving the only woman CM Rajinder Kaur Bhattal, apart from producing many CMs such as Surjith Singh Barnala, Sant Harichand Singh Longowal, Harcharan Singh Brar, Parneet Kaur, Sukhdev Singh Thinsdaw and Balwinder Singh Bhandar.
Former prime minster I K Gujral, former president Gnani Jail Singh, former CM Darbara Singh and other leaders belong to Doaba.
Sutlez, Biyas rivers divide Malwa and Doaba into two regions, hence language, accent, life styles, financial situation of these two areas are different.
Congress won 37 seats from Malwa in 2007 but failed to get into power. Akalis won 33 seats in 2012 and came to power. Badals got majority seats in Majha and Doaba in the last two elections.
Now along with Congress and Akalis, Aam Admi Party is (AAP) also gaining strength in Malwa. AAP won two seats in the last parliament elections. Bhagawath Mann and Dharamveer Singh are the sitting MPs. Along with them, AAP leader Gurpreet Singh Varaich and HS Pulka are representing Malwa constituency.