Delhi to witness bipolar contest as AAP, Congress join hands to take on BJP in Lok Sabha polls : The Tribune India

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Delhi to witness bipolar contest as AAP, Congress join hands to take on BJP in Lok Sabha polls

BJP seeks to repeat a clean sweep of all the seven constituencies for a third time in a row

Delhi to witness bipolar contest as AAP, Congress join hands to take on BJP in Lok Sabha polls

AAP leaders Saurabh Bharadwaj, Atishi Singh and Sandeep Pathak with Congress leaders Mukul Wasnik, Deepak Babaria and Arvinder Singh Lovely during a joint press conference in New Delhi on Saturday. PTI Photo



PTI

New Delhi, February 24

The battle lines in Delhi for upcoming Lok Sabha polls were drawn on Saturday with the Indian National Developmental Inclusive Alliance (INDIA) bloc partners AAP and Congress officially announcing a 4-3 seat-sharing formula to challenge the BJP dominance in the national capital.

The coming together of AAP and Congress will make the poll contest in Delhi a bipolar affair involving the BJP which seeks to repeat a clean sweep of all the seven constituencies for a third time in a row.

The AAP will field its candidates on four seats—New Delhi, South Delhi, West Delhi and East Delhi—while Congress will contest the Northeast Delhi, Northwest Delhi and Chandni Chowk constituencies, Congress national general secretary Mukul Wasnik said in a joint press conference with AAP leaders.

Giving the seat-sharing details, he said that although the Congress is fighting on three seats in Delhi, its workers and leaders will endeavour for the victory of INDIA bloc in all the seven constituencies.

All the seven Lok Sabha seats in Delhi have been with the BJP since 2014. In the 2019 polls, BJP candidates polled more votes than the joint tally of Congress and AAP candidates on each seat.

“Basically, all seven seats suit AAP in terms of winnability. However, for Delhi, we have agreed to the choice given by the Congress. In alliance, all seven seats are being contested by the INDIA bloc and we will work to win all seven seats for India,” the AAP said in a statement.

However, a major challenge before the INDIA candidates will be to bridge the huge gap of votes between the winning BJP candidates in the 2019 polls and the defeated candidates.

The BJP candidates had defeated Congress and AAP nominees with margins running into lakhs of votes in the 2019 polls. The AAP and Congress had tried to enter into an alliance in Delhi in 2019 also but failed to do so.

Two-time BJP MP Manoj Tiwari defeated former Chief Minister and Congress candidate Sheila Dikshit by a margin of 3.6 lakh votes in 2019 from Northeast Delhi seat.

Sources said the Congress is likely to field its Delhi unit chief Arvind Singh Lovely from the seat that has the highest percentage of Muslim population (over 29 per cent) of all the parliamentary constituencies in the city.

The name of young Congress leader Kanhaiya Kumar is also doing the rounds as a probable from Northeast Delhi seat, which has a dominance of Purvanchali voters and which was rocked by riots in 2020.

The Congress will also contest the reserved Northwest Delhi seat that is currently held by the BJP’s Hans Raj Hans.

The Congress will also contest from the Chandni Chowk constituency with senior party leader JP Agarwal, a former MP from the constituency, said to be a leading probable this time.

Mahila Congress chief Alka Lamba, who earlier represented the Chandni Chowk Assembly seat as an AAP leader, could also be considered by the Congress, sources claimed.

The South Delhi Lok Sabha seat will be contested by the AAP and its Chhatarpur MLA Kartar Singh Tanwar is said to be a probable, sources said.

#BJP #Congress #Lok Sabha


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