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JD(U) to contest all 70 seats, may split BJP votes

Neelam Pandey and Faizan Haidar, Hindustan Times  New Delhi, September 27, 2013
First Published: 01:12 IST(27/9/2013) | Last Updated: 01:25 IST(27/9/2013)

Delhi’s voters seem spoilt for choice with the Janata Dal (United) preparing to field its candidates on all 70 Assembly seats. But this spells bad news for the national parties as the regional parties may eat into their votebanks.

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The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) has already emerged as a new alternative for the voters and has been campaigning aggressively against the Sheila Dikshit government and denting the BJP’s prospects to garner the anti-incumbency votes.

On Wednesday, UPA ally Nationalist Congress Party also announced fielding candidates from all 70 seats.

The JD(U)’s move is likely to further divide the BJP votes. Sources said the recent National Democratic Alliance (NDA)-JDU split is one of the triggering factors for this decision.

“This is really going to hurt the BJP, mostly because of the Purvanchali votebank. The migrant population may not be very inclined, especially towards the BJP,” said Vivek Kumar, associate professor, School of Social Sciences, Jawaharlal Nehru University.

The JD(U) is especially counting on the 40-lakh Purvanchalis spread across the city who can help them win a few seats while vote division is likely to take place in several other constituencies.

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“We have conducted a survey after dividing the assembly seats into four categories. There are at least eight seats where Purvanchali voters’ population exceeds 40,000. We are concentrating more on these seats.

Our next focus area would be on areas where their number is at least 30,000. While our focus is on seats where we can win, we want to increase our vote percentage,” said Sabir Ali, Delhi JD(U) president.

Purvanchalis form more than 30 per cent population in constituencies such as Dwarka, Vikaspuri, Patparganj, Uttam Nagar, RK Puram, Badli, Matiala, Laxmi Nagar among others.

The party has already started interacting with the residents of these colonies to know their concerns.

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