Amid farmers' protest, 9,222 candidates in fray as Punjab civic bodies go to polls on Feb 14
Photo Credit: PTI

A total of 9,222 candidates are in the fray for the February 14 municipal polls in Punjab, officials told PTI on Saturday.

They said 15,305 candidates had filed nomination papers for eight municipal corporations and 109 municipal councils and nagar panchayat elections.

According to data provided by the state election office, 2,832 contestants, out of total 9,222 candidates, are contesting as independents in the polls.

Out of the total candidates, 2,037 are of the ruling Congress, while 1,569 are Akali Dal nominees. The number of candidates of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) are 1,003 and 1,606, respectively, it said.

The counting of votes will take place on February 17. There are 39,15,280 registered voters, out of which, 20,49,777 are male, 18,65,354 female and 149 transgender voters, according to the data.

Meanwhile, political parties in Punjab face a major test as the state goes to municipal polls in 7 days from now and unrest continues due to agitation against three laws enacted by the central government in September last year.

Farmers on Saturday parked their tractor-trailers in the middle of roads and raised slogans against the Centre during a three-hour-long "chakka jam" agitation in Punjab and Haryana. Women took part in the stir in a sizeable number at several places.

The call for the nationwide "chakka jam" was given by the Samkyukt Kisan Morcha, an umbrella body of farm unions protesting the Centre's farm laws at the Delhi borders. The agitation from 12 noon till 3 pm was announced to register protest against the internet ban in areas near their agitation sites, alleged harassment meted out to farmers by the authorities and other issues. Farmer leaders claimed that their three-hour stir remained peaceful in both states.

Farmers have been protesting at different borders of the national capital since November 26 last year against the three newly enacted farm laws: Farmers' Produce Trade and Commerce (Promotion and Facilitation) Act, 2020; the Farmers Empowerment and Protection) Agreement on Price Assurance and farm Services Act 2020 and the Essential Commodities (Amendment) Act, 2020.

(With inputs from PTI and ANI)

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