The buzz on prospects of the newly formed Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) is gaining steam but two older players, the Congress and the BJP, have resorted to their trump cards to win the race as well. The state assembly polls in Delhi have traditionally been a tussle between the BJP and the Congress. There is no denying the reality BJP lost in three consecutive elections mainly owing to their inability to have a powerful candidate to take on CM Sheila Dixit. However, this time there is a third contender and the way it is gaining public support, the heavyweights cannot overlook the might of the AAP.
While AAP hopes to take down the heavyweights with the mounting public support in its favor, Delhi CM Sheila Dixit feels both nervous and confident, as she said recently. She said in a recent interview that it is not possible to interpret thoughts of voters but there are prospects of her party continuing to be at helm. She did admit that Arvind Kejriwal, the AAP leader, has succeeded in striking a chord with the mass in a short period. However, she added that AAP leaders lack vision, which may ultimately prompt voters to turn towards Congress. Saying that public support does not always reflect into ballots, the CM remarked her party is eyeing the BJP as the rival and not the AAP for the upcoming assembly polls.
When asked about issues highlighted by the AAP, the Delhi CM said some of them may have substance but holding Congress responsible single-handedly is illogical. While speaking on the onion price hike, she remarked it is a nationwide problem and Delhi government has tried its best to stop prices from spiraling out of control. She said the onion price hike has also been fueled by unprecedented rains in some states.
While the ruling party is trying to downplay the rise and popularity of the AAP, the latter has announced that it will field candidates in 70 constituencies in the national capital. The party spokespersons also said that the survey they conducted shows AAP sweeping 33 out of 70 assembly seats in the upcoming polls. In recent times, the party has come down heavily on the ruling Delhi Government on issues like corruption, water tariff and power.
As far as the BJP's prospects in upcoming Delhi Assembly Polls are concerned, the biggest problem the party faces is its lack of integrity. Infighting in the party has given the AAP some edge, say veteran political analysts. However, fielding Harshvardhan as its candidate may work in BJP's favor. Unlike Vijay Goel, the party's earlier contender, he enjoys a clean reputation. BJP's delay in announcing candidate names and CM contender has left supporters and cadres somewhat ill-prepared.
Meanwhile, the AAP retorted to BJP's selection of CM candidate for Delhi assembly polls, saying the party is so corrupt that a person with clean image cannot save it from debacle. Manish Sisodia, AAP founder member and its candidate from Patparganj, pointed out that Harshbardhan never spoke against corruptions and malpractices in Delhi Municipal Corporation. The AAP says in opinion polls it is evident it has made inroads in Sikh community and upper castes considerably, two strongholds of BJP.
Delhi Poll predictions
The AAP seems to be expanding its influence, with the opinion polls in Delhi now predicting a hung assembly. According to the AC Nielsen poll conducted for ABP News, the AAP is likely to secure 26% of the votes, as compared with the 15% predicated earlier. The BJP will be the leading party at 34%, but that is not going to be enough to form the government. The biggest loser will be the INC, which will see its vote share slip to a dismal 27%.
Last Updated on April 12, 2019