Who is Bhagwant Mann, Punjab’s Chief Minister-elect?

PunjabWho is Bhagwant Mann, Punjab’s Chief Minister-elect?


Who is Bhagwant Mann, Punjab’s Chief Minister-elect?

Bhagwant Mann has drawn a lot of attention by leading a historic win for Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) in Punjab. The state decided to vote against the traditional parties and opt for a big change.

Bhagwant Mann is not an unknown name. He was earlier a comedian and have participated in reality shows. He joined politics almost a decade back and rose to be the CM face for AAP.

Read also- Time to sweep away political corruption from Punjab: Bhagwant Mann

AAP too has been looking at expanding its base beyond Delhi. It had tried in the past too but never been able to get the success. However, in Punjab they have managed to replicate their Delhi model and just like they swept Delhi, they have swept Punjab also off their feet.

Coming back to Mann, he was chosen as the CM face by the party on January 19 itself. He was born in Sangrur and his father is a school teacher. His first brush with fame was when he was just 18 years old. At that time, he had released an audio cassette while pursuing his college degree.

Read also- Modi congratulates AAP for Punjab sweep, assures Centre’s help

He later on went on to be a comedian and joined politics when he was at the peak of his career. A move that many thought was not required. A lot of people believed that he should have continued in comedy itself and only looked at an alternative when his stars were failing. Nevertheless, Mann joined People’s Party of Punjab in 2012. This political party was formed by Manpreet Singh Badal, who is the nephew of Prakash Singh Badal. The People’s Party of Punjab also promised to clean the face of politics.

However, they were not able to make a big mark. Later in 2014 Badal decided to merge the party with Congress. This is when Mann parted ways with the People’s Party of Punjab. This is when he joined AAP. Not only did he contest the election from the AAP seat but also won it by a huge margin. This was the Lok Sabha elections of 2014. In the 2017 state elections too, Mann led from the front for AAP. He addressed more than 300 rallies. This was followed by his scandals where he was termed an alcoholic. After a low phase, Mann again came back reformed and claimed to be sober.

Mann’s narrative for the recently concluded polls was a pitch for clean politics and him as a leader that is connected to the soil. Post his victory an old clip of his comedy days has gone viral. In this clip, Navjot Singh Sidhu was the judge of the show and Mann can be seen making fun of what the government stands for.

Read also- AAP’s oath-taking of Punjab cabinet in Bhagat Singh’s ancestral village

AAP has managed to secure 92 seats from 117. Soon after the victory, Mann announced that the oath-taking ceremony will not be held at Raj Bhawan. He mentioned that the ceremony will instead be done at Khatkarkalan. However, it has not been made clear why he decided to change the venue. Also, the date for the ceremony is yet to be announced. Another change that Mann has already asked for is that the government offices will not have pictures of the Chief Minister. In lieu of that, there will be pictures of Bhagat Singh and BR Ambedkar.

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