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Brace for Sonia, Maya rallies today

delhi Updated: Nov 22, 2008 23:47 IST
Anuradha Mukherjee
Anuradha Mukherjee
Hindustan Times
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With Delhi going to the polls in less than a week, political heavyweights are descending upon the city in a show of strength.

Sunday will see three rallies in the city — AICC chief Sonia Gandhi will address voters at Mangolpuri, which is a reserved seat and Urban Development Minister Raj Kumar Chauhan’s constituency.

She will also introduce 22 of the Congress candidates to the electorate.

“She will introduce candidates from Narela to Najafgarh, and a few seats from south Delhi. Similarly, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Rahul Gandhi will introduce the others,” said Delhi Pradesh Congress Committee (DPCC) chief Jai Prakash Aggarwal.

Sunday is being seen as an extremely crucial day for shows of strength — with BSP supremo Mayawati set to address another rally at Trilokpuri. Shiromani Akali Dal chief Parkash Singh Badal is also going to hold a rally in the city.

Asked if Congress was worried about the turnout being low because of the BSP rally, Aggarwal said there were no such fears as Congress had its own dedicated voters, being the oldest party in the fray.

Party workers, however, had been at work all day to ensure that the rally was well attended. “Most of the last few days were spent in preparing for the rally, which is basically going to be a show of strength. We are expecting a good turnout for Soniaji’s rally tomorrow,” said a DPCC leader.

Meanwhile, Health Minister Yoganand Shastri enlisted the help of two prominent Jat leaders — Haryana Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda and Outer Delhi MP Sajjan Kumar — along with Dikshit. “At a time like this, we need help from all senior party leaders,” said Shastri, whose Mehrauli seat has a sizeable number of Jat votes.

The city got a dose of star power with film star-turned-politician Raj Babbar campaigning for Congress, and former cricketer Navjot Singh Sidhu and actor Shatrughan Sinha raising the pitch for BJP.