MCD ELECTIONS24 Apr 2017 | 12:39 AM
NEW DELHI: Even as the 2017 fiercely contested municipal elections are seen as a test of popularity between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, responses from voters in several areas of Delhi largely indicated that reputation of the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) has suffered a beating in a big way.[ + read story ]
Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal with his family showing their ink-marked fingers after casting votes at a polling station during the civic polls in New Delhi on Sunday. Tribune photo: Manas Ranjan Bhui
Tribune News Service
New Delhi, April 23
Even as the 2017 fiercely contested municipal elections are seen as a test of popularity between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, responses from voters in several areas of Delhi largely indicated that reputation of the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) has suffered a beating in a big way.
However, it is still a triangular battle between the BJP, the AAP and the Congress as suggested by the electorate in many areas of South Delhi, including Lajpat Nagar, Defence Colony, Jangpura, Greater Kailash, besides areas dotting Outer Delhi.
While there were places like two wards, Andrews Ganj and Kasturba Nagar that primarily hinted at a direct fight between the incumbent BJP and the Congress.
Voters in Andrews Ganj ward, which has a total of 15 polling stations, were divided between the BJP candidate Rajeev Rana and the Congress sitting councillor Abhishekh Dutt while there were many in two other wards— Kasturba Nagar and Kotla Mubarakpur in South Delhi— who were of the view that the BJP has a clear mandate to win riding high on the Modi wave while AAP is likely to emerge a distant third.
Brij Mohan Chabra (88) who was accompanied by his grandson Ullas, said, “It is more or less a two-way contest between the BJP and Congress while AAP is fizzling out.”
“The BJP and Congress are more accessible making them an obvious choice of people,” echoed a young voter at Defence Colony.
According to 88-year-old SC Gupta, a retired Central government employee and a resident of E-235, Amar Colony, the Lajpat Naar area, known as a refugee colony has traditionally been a BJP stronghold and the sway of people in the area is towards the saffron party.
Candidates above party for many voters
But there are some, like Kamal and Renu Mahajan, in their sixties, for whom candidates are above party loyalty. Despite being traditionally BJP supporters, they have decided to vote for the Congress candidate in Defence Colony area. “The sitting councillor has done a lot for senior citizens in Defence Colony and he deserves to be elected,” they said. ‘
Another like Pritpal Singh underlined, he and his family are not voting on the party lines, but candidate who is always there for people.
A local in the neighbourhood, maintained it is logical to vote for a party which is at the Centre so that development in the area is carried out smoothly while referring to the frequent confrontations the Capital has witnessed between the BJP and the Kejriwal-led AAP.
There were many in Kasturba Nagar area who shared the view that the stupendous victory of AAP in 2013 and 2014 Delhi Assembly elections was due to the anti-corruption wave following the Anna-led nationwide movement in 2011.