Civic polls today; general election-like fever in city
The stage is all set for voting in Delhi's municipal corporation elections on Sunday. Witnessing a high-voltage battle till now, as many as 272 wards across three civic bodies – East MCD with 64 wards, North MCD with South MCD with 104 wards — will go to the polls.
With its slogan of 'Nai Sooch, Nai Ummeed', the ruling-BJP has felt the need to change the faces of its candidates with new energy and young personalities and nominate vibrant candidate to serve Delhi. The party's state unit president, through his Poorvanchali connect, is determined to retain power for the third consecutive time. His connect has also helped provide inroads to the BJP in Poorvanchali- dominated areas. The upper middle class and middle class have always been BJP voters. However, the Narendra Modi-led BJP is trying to enlarge its base and attracte the "aam admi voter".
The Aam Aadmi Party, after its unprecedented victory in the Assembly elections in 2015, is gearing up for another round of battle in the Capital. AAP, with claims to make "revolutionary" changes in education, health, power, water and various other sectors in its two years' of power in the Delhi government, is seeking votes to usher similar reforms in the Corporations.
The party is emphasising the need for one party rule in both the state and Corporations. The civic elections are also being seen as a popularity test for party Convener and Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal who, on Saturday said he was confident that the "good people" who have left AAP will return to its fold.
Coming out with roads map on sanitation, primary health, education, financial self-reliance of cash-starved civic bodies, the Congress too claims it will solve all the problems once voted to power. The Congress, with claims to be the party with the longest experience of ruling, is seeking a vote for "positive governance". After securing a meteoric 300 per cent rise in vote share in the Rajouri Garden by-poll, the party is pinning its hopes on the fading out of the AAP, the anti-incumbency wave prevalent in Delhi and the annexing some of the massive vote share that AAP had secured last time.
The other new factor in this MCD election is Swaraj India which claims it will prove to be a major force, though it campaigned quietly.