The ‘Prince of Najafgarh’, Virendra Sehwag, and Olympic bronze-winning wrestler Sushil Kumar have unwittingly figured in the electoral campaign process, although not in person.
To underline the “sporting abilities” of the people of West Delhi constituency, the area’s BJP candidate Jagdish Mukhi (66) is highlighting the names of these star sportsmen — both voters in the constituency — in his campaigns and promising “world class sports complexes” that would bring out more such sporting talents in the area.
“I will make a world class stadium and help create sporting talents like these two from school level. Not a single sporting facility or stadium has been sanctioned in West Dellhi despite there being so much expenditure on Commonwealth Games,” Mukhi told reporters on Friday.
While reminding the electorate in his speeches about West Delhi having produced “these world class sports stars”, Mukhi said, “The Delhi government has been biased in sanctioning all development work around South and Central Delhi, in the name of the Games, ignoring the West.”
In his plethora of promises regarding a development agenda for the area, Mukhi is pitting West Delhi against the posh South Delhi, claiming that the Delhi government has diverted budgetary funds in the name of Commonwealth Games to develop only South Delhi.
“If you cross Pankha Road beyond the Metro line in Uttam Nagar in West Delhi, it doesn’t feel like Delhi,” he said, adding, “I will change that. I will turn West Delhi into South Delhi.”
A former Higher Education Minister of Delhi during the BJP reign, Mukhi also called for an unprecedented 9 per cent of the Union Budget to be spent on education as against the present 6 per cent.
Mukhi, who has been an MLA from Janakpuri for 29 years, is up against local Congress MLA Mahabal Mishra. While conventional wisdom has pegged Mukhi as the frontrunner, Mishra is expected to give him a tough fight for the seat.