Congress leads in Punjab, Badal ahead in Lambi

Chandigarh, (IANS): The Congress was leading in four seats on Saturday in early trends of counting of votes for the 117 assembly seats in Punjab.

The ruling Akali Dal and new entrant Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) were leading in two seats each.

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Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal, 89, was leading from his Lambi seat over his rivals Amarinder Singh (Congress) and Jarnal Singh (AAP).

Counting of votes for 117 assembly seats and the by-election to the Amritsar Lok Sabha seat began across Punjab in the morning amid tight security.

The counting, which started at 8 a.m, is taking place at 54 centres in 27 locations.

The fate of 1,145 candidates, including 81 women, will be decided. A total of 77.4 per cent of the 1.98 crore electors in Punjab voted on February 4.

The counting started amid uncertainty amid the possibility of a hung house.

The main contenders for powers are the Shiromani Akali Dal-BJP combine, the Congress and the AAP.

A party needs 59 seats to gain a simple majority in the assembly.

The by-election to the Amritsar Lok Sabha seat, vacated by Congress leader Amarinder Singh in November 2016, was also held with the assembly polls.