The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) is bracing for elections to three Delhi assembly seats slated to be held on November 25. The seats fell vacant after three BJP MLAs were elected to the Lok Sabha earlier this year.
Sources say that the party may or may not field candidates who had fought the 2013 assembly elections in the poll-bound constituencies- Krishna Nagar, Mehrauli and Tughlakabad.
The leaders who were elected to the Lok Sabha are Harsh Vardhan, Ramesh Bidhuri and Parvesh Sahib Singh.
Durgesh Pathak, an AAP strategist, said, “Officially, we will unveil our strategy once we know what happens in the Supreme Court tomorrow. We have held two reviews of the three seats. There were issues in 12-15 polling booths and we have addressed them. The whole Delhi unit and all volunteers will work towards ensuring party’s victory.”
The Supreme Court has asked the Centre to come clean whether Delhi gets an alternative government or goes in for fresh elections. The state is in its eighth month of President’s Rule after the AAP government resigned in February this year. The court will hear the matter on Tuesday.
In case of fresh polls, the Election Commission will withdraw its Saturday notification for by-polls.
Whatever may be the result of the by-polls next month, it will not break the current deadlock in the Delhi assembly. Even if a single party wins all three seats it is unlikely that it will have enough seats (36) to be able to form a government.
In the 70-member Delhi House, the BJP and its ally Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) has 29 MLAs. AAP has 27 members and the Congress, eight.
“These three seats have remained neglected after BJP’s MLAs were elected to Parliament. We’re confident of a good show,” said an AAP leader.
Between the 2013 assembly elections and the 2014 Lok Sabha elections, AAP’s performance has improved as far as votes in two assembly seats are concerned.
“Though Assembly and Lok Sabha polls are fought on different issues, the 2014 performance shows AAP is ahead of BJP in Tughlakabad and Mehrauli,” said Pathak.
AAP has reasons to be hopeful. BSP’s Sahi Ram who lost to BJP’s Ramesh Bidhuri only by about 6,000 votes Tughlakabad has since joined AAP. In Mehrauli, AAP candidate Narender Singh Sejwal lost to BJP’s Pravesh Verma only by 4,564 votes.
Krishna Nagar, earlier won by now union health minister Harsh Vardhan, may prove to be the toughest seat for AAP. The party came third and even the Lok Sabha performance shows it is lagging way behind BJP.