Simranjit Mann: Khalistan advocate back in Parliament after two decades
Dubbed 'Budda Jarnail' by some of his critics, 77-year-old Shiromani Akali Dal (Amritsar) president and former IPS officer Simranjit Singh Mann had recently insisted that he may have grown old but couldn't be written off just yet.
Mann defeated his nearest rival, AAP's Gurmail Singh, by a margin of 5,822 votes, dealing a big blow to the ruling party of Punjab which had registered a landslide win in the state polls three months ago and was hoping to retain the Sangrur Lok Sabha seat for the third time.
Speaking to reporters in Sangrur after his win, the SAD (Amritsar) leader said, ''Many used to laugh, saying what will Simranjit Singh Mann do. They have been proven wrong today.'' Mann thanked the voters for his victory.
''I am grateful to the voters of Sangrur for having elected me as their representative in Parliament. I will work hard to ameliorate the sufferings of our farmers, farm labourers, traders and everyone in my constituency,'' he said.
He joined the Indian Police Service (IPS) in 1967 and held various posts including superintendent of police (Vigilance), SP (Headquarters), senior superintendent of police (SSP), Ferozepur; SSP Faridkot and group commandant of Central Industrial Security Force.
Operation Bluestar was carried out by the Indian Army in June 1984 to flush out militants hiding in the Golden Temple complex.
Mann had resigned from the IPS in 1984 following Operation Bluestar.
The SAD (Amritsar) has been trying its luck in the Punjab Assembly polls but in vain.
Mann had contested the 2022 Assembly polls from the Amargarh seat and was defeated by the AAP's Jaswant Singh Gajjanmajra by a margin of 6,043 votes.
The Sangrur Lok Sabha seat was considered an AAP bastion. The party had won all the nine assembly segments -- Lehra, Dirba, Barnala, Sunam, Bhadaur, Mehal Kalan, Malerkotla, Dhuri and Sangrur -- falling under the Sangrur parliamentary constituency in the 2022 state polls.
He received massive support, especially from rural areas including Muslim-majority Malerkotla.
Before Mann filed his nomination papers for the Sangrur bypoll, SAD chief Sukhbir Singh Badal, along with other leaders, had met him and urged him to support a candidate from the family of a Sikh prisoner. Mann, however, rejected the request.
(This story has not been edited by Devdiscourse staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)