The Punjab legislative assembly election, 2017 will be held on 04 February 2017 to select the 117 members of the Punjab Legislative Assembly. The results of the election will be announced on 11 March of Punjab Legislative Assembly. The current ruling coalition is Shiromani Akali Dal - Bharatiya Janata Partyalliance led by Parkash Singh Badal.
Electoral process changes
In April 2016, the Election Commission of India revealed about 8 lakh bogus votes of state being cancelled in the past one year and over 7 lakh youngsters who have attained the age of 18 this year were yet to get registered. One constituency in every district will be chosen for trial run of Voter-verified paper audit trail (VVPAT) machines used along with EVMs. Election Commission also decided to set up new polling stations if the number of voters was more than 1200 in rural areas and 1400 in urban areas.
The previous election, held in 2012, resulted in a majority of seats being won by ruling Shiromani Akali Dal-Bharatiya Janata Party and Parkash Singh Badal became Chief Minister. The 2014 general election was held in Punjab for 13 parliamentary constituencies. Shiromani Akali Dal and Aam Aadmi Party won four seats each, Congress won three, and two constituencies elected Bharatiya Janata Party candidates. In December 2015, Aam Aadmi Party declared that it would contest the Legislative Assembly elections in 2017. Congress will take part in the elections under the leadership of Amarinder Singh, and the party has hired poll strategist Prashant Kishor for campaigning.
Caste and religion data
As per 2011 census, 57.69% of state's population follows the Sikhism thus making Punjab only sikh majority state in India. Hindus form 38.5% of the population while Muslims form 1.93% of the population and Christianity is 1.3% is followed by Buddhism (0.12%) and Jainism (0.16%). As per 2011 census, Dalits (Scheduled Castes) constitute 31.94% of Punjab population, highest percentage amongst all the States of India. Other Backward Classes (OBCs) like Sainis, Kambojs, Labanas, Tarkhans/Ramgarhias, Arains, Gurjars, Telis, Banjaras, Lohars constitute 20%- 25% of Punjab population. Jat Sikhs comprise of 21% population in Punjab. Other Forward castes (General castes) like Brahmins, Khatris/Bhapas, Bania, Thakurs/Rajputs constitute around 20% of Punjab population. As of 2016, Government of India has not publicly released Socio Economic and Caste Census 2011 caste population data for every single non-SC/ST castes (General castes, OBC/EBCs) in India.
|Castes of Punjab|
|OBC||22%||includes Sainis, Kambojs, Lobanas, Tarkhans/Ramgarhias, Arains, Gurjars, Telis, Banjaras, Lohars|
|Scheduled Castes (Dalits)||31.94%||includes Mazhabi Sikhs - 10%, Chamars/Ad-Dharmis - 13.1%, Balmikis/Bhanghi - 3.5%, Bazigar - 1.05%, Others - 4%|
|Forward caste||41%||includes Jat Sikhs - 21%, Brahmins, Khatris/Bhapas, Bania, Thakurs/Rajputs|
|Others||3.8%||includes Muslims, Christians, Buddhists, Jains|
Assembly elections in Punjab will be held on 4th February 2017 in single phase and counting of vote will take place on 11th March. The term of the current assembly will end on 18th March 2017
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