Aside

AAP won support from across the communities

kejriwalNEW DELHI: The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) on Tuesday breached all caste and class divides to record a historic victory in the Delhi Assembly elections.

With its army of young and dynamic activists, the AAP’s aggressive door-to-door campaign got it 48.78 lakh votes to win 67 of the 70 seats in the assembly.

Be it the Muslim-dominated areas of the walled city, or Jat-dominated clusters in the rural belt, the AAP made inroads in all the sections of the society for its landslide victory.

The party was also successful in getting a large number of votes in seats dominated by pandits, Punjabis, Poorvanchalis, Kayasthas, Vaishs and Scheduled Castes.

Estimates show that there are about 17% Scheduled Castes, 16% Poorvanchalis, 12% Muslims, pandits and Punjabis (each 10%), eight percent Vaishs, five percent Jats, four percent Gujjars, three percent Sikhs, two percent Yadavs and one per cent Uttrakhandis in the city.

About 60% of the voters are in 48 resettlement colonies, 1,069 unauthorised colonies and other slum clusters.

The poll outcome clearly establishes the fact that lower, middle and upper class voters opted for the AAP to ensure a crushing defeat for the BJP and the Congress.

For instance, in Vikaspuri, which has voters from different communities of different income groups, was won by AAP’s Mahender Yadav by polling a record 132,437 votes, defeating BJP’s Sanjay Singh by 77,665 votes.

Janakpuri and Patparganj, which have both lower and middle class voters, were bagged by the AAP.

In Patparganj, AAP leader Manish Sisodia got 75,477 votes against BJP’s Vinod Kumar Binny, who bagged 46,716 votes.

Ditto was the case with Janakpuri, where AAP’s Rajesh Rishi defeated BJP heavyweight Jagdish Mukhi by a margin of 25,580 votes.

In the constituencies with a heavy presence of resettlement and unauthorised colonies and slums, the AAP won with huge margins.

For instance, in Kirari, AAP’s Rituraj Govind secured 97,727 votes against BJP’s Anil Jha, who bagged 52,555.

Again in Uttam Nagar, AAP’s Naresh Balyan got 83,622 votes against BJP’s Pawan Sharma, who secured 53,544 votes. Congress chief spokesperson Mukesh Sharma managed to get 20,359 votes.

In the prestigious New Delhi seat, which has a sizeable presence of government employees, AAP chief Arvind Kejriwal secured 57,213 votes against BJP’s Nupur Sharma, who got 25,630 votes.

Congress heavyweight Kiran Walia bagged just 4,781 votes.

In the Muslim-dominated seats like Matia Mahal, Ballimaran, Seelampur and Okhla, the AAP candidates won with huge margins.

Ballimaran, Seelampur and Matia Mahal, which were won five times by Congress candidates, went the AAP way.

Even 12 reserved constituencies voted in unison for the AAP. The only solace for the BJP was that its CM candidate Kiran Bedi lost by only 2,277 votes in Krishna Nagar.

Another surprise was the Najafgarh seat, where the Indian National Lok Dal’s Bharat Singh lost by 1,555 votes to the AAP’s Kailash Gahlot.

Meanwhile the slipping away of the Moti Nagar seat from the BJP is being interpreted in the political circles as a clear indication that the party had lost complete control over its traditional Punjabi votebank.

As far as the Krishna Nagar seat is concerned, it was won five times by Union minister Harsh Vardhan.
Dr Vardhan, who belongs to the Vaish community, had won the seat by a margin of about 23,000 votes in 2013.

The only time that Dr Vardhan had won the seat by less than 5,000 vote margin was in 2008, when he faced a tough competition from his Congress rival Deepika Khullar, who secured 44,648 votes.

A resident of Krishna Nagar said: “A majority of the people used to vote for the BJP just because of Dr Harsh Vardhan. By parachuting Dr Kiran Bedi, our workers got demoralised.

“That’s precisely why we lost this seat. This is a lesson for the BJP to ensure local leaders are preferred over outsiders in state elections.”  – From The Asian Age

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