Apart from basic issues like roads, water and electricity, the question of belonging to a place is all set to pop up as an issue for candidates contesting the Kalkaji elections.
While 51-year-old Subhash Chopra, the sitting MLA from the Congress for two terms, claimed he was closer to the people and also the most visible face, his opponent Jai Bhagwan Abrol (63), former director of a company that manufactured neon signs, maintained apart from him, no contestant was even eligible to cast vote from the constituency.
“I’m the only person who can vote from my own constituency. The sitting MLA doesn’t even live in his constituency. So the question of belonging is a false propaganda. Whatever little work has been done took place as the dates of elections drew near. People are fed up of all this,” said Abrol.
Kalkaji is one constituency that literally has voters from all strata, be it slum dwellers from the JJ clusters, or the posh New Friends Colony.
Post-delimitation, around 30,000 votes from Kalkaji have gone to the Greater Kailash segment, as also Chittranjan Park, Greater Kailash-II, Sheikh Sarai phase-II and Alaknanda. At the same time, about 30,000 slum votes have been added to the area.
Areas such as Maharani Bagh, East of Kailash, Sri Niwaspuri, Jullena, Bharat Nagar, parts of New Friends colony have also been added to Kalkaji. Hence there are several areas in the constituency that are new for both the candidates.
“There is not a single person in this area who is discontent with the developmental work I have done here. No one is even aware of the name of the BJP contestant, he is an outsider for the people,” said Chopra, who campaigned the traditional way of going door-to-door to woo voters.
There was mixed response to the developmental work carried out by Chopra. “I will be casting my vote for the first time so I’m busy collecting information about the candidates and then will decide,” said Sakshi Gambhir, a Govindpuri resident.
Many residents are, however, miffed with the shoddy road repair work. “Before repairing the roads they should dig it up but they keep re-laying it. We have been living here since 1959 and now we want a change,” said S.P. Soni, a retired government employee from Govindpuri.