Popular comedian turns Punjab’s first AAP CM; Know Bhagwant Mann’s journey

It was a quite good turn for  Aam Aadmi Party’s (AAP) Bhagwant Mann as his race to become the Chief Minister of Punjab is now a reality. Although it was not a well-planned or much-anticipated victory, the man, Mann would take up the role of CM in Punjab with the effort of the Aam Aadmi Party. He will soon become the occupant of the highest political office in Punjab. 

According to data, the Aam Admi Party in 91 seats thrashed the ruling party congress and many others. Bhagwant Mann was able to prove to the people that the Aam Aadmi Party has a foothold not only in Delhi but also in Punjab. Thus he became the leader who realized the political ambition of the Aam Aadmi Party to grow outside Delhi.

From being a comedian to the leader of a state

Bhagwant Mann was a shining star who used to make jokes at old college head shows and youth comedy competitions. Bhagwant Mann, who is best known for his TV shows, had his hands full of political satires. Bhagwant had been doing comedy shows that mainly focused on the areas of politics, business, sports. Mann was very active in youth comedy festivals and inter-college competitions.

When Bhagwant Mann, an entertainer from Punjab set foot on national television, his comedy show was judged by Congress’ Navjot Singh Sidhu who has been one of his strong opponents in the Assembly elections 2022. Bhagwant has been representing the Sangrur constituency in Punjab in the Lok Sabha since 2014. 

In early 2011, Mann joined the People’s Party of Punjab. He contested from Lehra constituency in 2012 but was defeated by his opponent. In 2014, Mann joined the Aam Aadmi Party and contested the Sangrur Lok Sabha constituency. He won by more than two lakh votes. But he contested the 2017 elections from Jalalabad and lost to Sukhbir Singh Badal later.

Early life

Mann was born in a Jat Sikh family on 17 October 1973 to father Mohinder Singh and mother Harpal Kaur in Satoj village of Sangrur district, Punjab, India. He pursued his graduation from Shaheed Udham Singh Government College. As an entertainer, his first film was Kachheri. It was released in 1994. Bhagwant Mann rose to national prominence after appearing in the late-2000s stand-up comedy show ‘The Great Indian Laughter Challenge.’

Disputes

During the election campaigns, there has been a wave in favor of AAP. The biggest opposition of Mann was his alleged alcoholism. Mann allegedly arrived drunk on several occasions. In 2015, a video of Bhagwant Mann allegedly drunkenly attending a condolence meeting in Faridkot went viral. Another video of Mann’s Lok Sabha speech went viral in 2019, in which he was allegedly under the influence of alcohol. The BJP had then demanded that the MP be subjected to a narcotics test. However, he is all set to become the Chief Minister throwing after all the criticisms and allegations against him. 

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The second most prominent challenge for Mann is inter-state disputes involving Delhi and Punjab. Senior political leaders in the state often emphasize three of these, the unsettling aspects of a river-linking dispute involving the Sutlej and the Yamuna, the air pollution issue for which Delhi blames Punjab every year, and the issue of Devinder Pal Singh Bhullar. 

Bhagwant is contesting from Dhuri constituency, where the Shiromani Akali Dal has won four times and the Congress three times since 1977. But this time, Bhagwant’s victory is far behind that of sitting MLA Dalveer Singh.