Cong decimated, big debut for AAP

Cong decimated, big debut for AAP

Cong decimated, big debut for AAP

The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) emerged as the single largest party in the 70-member Delhi Assembly on Sunday in a close electoral fight that confirmed the dethroning of three-time Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit of the Congress and also announced the dashing entry of the Aam Aadmi Party’s into Delhi politics.

The BJP (31) and its ally Akali Dal (1) got 32 seats, the AAP 28, the Congress 8 and others 2.

Late on Sunday evening, BJP’s chief ministerial candidate Harsh Vardhan said he was preparing to sit in the opposition and see how he could work for people who helped the party emerge as the single largest party which fell short by four from reaching the half-way mark in the Assembly.

“We under-estimated the presence of the AAP and the type of support it was enjoying,” said Harsh Vardhan who won from the Krishna Nagar constituency.
He denied any possibility of making any attempt to cobble a majority in the House and linked the people’s attraction towards the AAP due to their desire to try out a new outfit.

Sheila defeated

The BJP ended the counting day by sharing honours with debutant AAP for ending the 15-year Congress rule whose Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit lost by 25,864 seats to AAP’s leader Arvind Kejriwal in the New Delhi seat.

Kejriwal, who defeated Dikshit,  said: “The party was ready to play the role of constructive opposition and there was no possibility of supporting any other party.
This is a victory of the common man,” he said. He added that their brand of politics will spread to other parts of the country. 

The scenario of a hung House and a repoll in the coming six months was not completely ruled out by  BJP leaders who refuted allegations of some AAP leaders that the BJP leaders were trying to woo the new outfit’s legislators.

Earlier, celebrations broke out at the Delhi BJP office and the AAP’s office at Hanuman Road in New Delhi as the counting trends showed a complete whitewash of the ruling Congress. The AAP’s spectacular political debut left its supporters ecstatic and hungry for a bigger role in the coming Lok Sabha elections.

“The mood is as if India has won the cricket World Cup,” said a volunteer from Indian Institute of Technology-Roorkee, who joined the dancing crowds outside the AAP office.

Another AAP supporter slammed Dikshit.

“She mocked at us and described us as ‘mango people’, now people have handed her a mango to eat over the next five years,” said an elderly supporter.

Holding brooms and applying coloured powder on each others’ face, the supporters of the youngest political party in Delhi shouted patriotic slogans all through the day.

Dikshit owned up to the ruling party’s poor show and said: “People of Delhi have taken a decision which we respect.”

“We thank the people of Delhi for supporting us for 15 years," said the 75-year-old Dikshit.

She also sent her resignation to Lt Governor Najeeb Jung.

The casualty list in the Congress camp was long. Along with Dikshit, almost half of her cabinet colleagues including Transport Minister Ramakant Goswami, Education Minister Kiran Walia, Finance Minister A K Walia, H S Balli, Speaker Yoganand Shastri and Public Works Department Minister Raj Kumar Chauhan. The party’s candidate from Ambedkar Nagar, Prem Singh, who held a world record for having all elections he contested in the last 40 years, fell to an AAP candidate Ashok Chauhan.

The two Delhi cabinet ministers who withstood the anti-Congress wave are Urban Development Minister Arvinder Singh Lovely and Food and Supplies Minister Haroon Yusuf.

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