Delhi: In poll-bound Rajinder Nagar, Kejriwal slams BJP for 'igniting conflicts'

Updated on Jun 18, 2022 02:14 AM IST

“If you want an MLA who is interested in rabble-rousing, press the lotus symbol [referring to the BJP’s symbol],” Kejriwal said in Karol Bagh’s WEA area, which falls in the Rajinder Nagar constituency.

Delhi chief minister and Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) chief Arvind Kejriwal.(file)
Delhi chief minister and Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) chief Arvind Kejriwal.(file)

Addressing his first roadshow in poll-bound Rajinder Nagar, Delhi chief minister and Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) chief Arvind Kejriwal on Friday implored residents of the area to vote for the party’s candidate Durgesh Pathak if they wanted “someone serious about getting their work done”.

“I am giving you the guarantee of getting all the work in the constituency done. I do what I promise,” he said, even as he criticised the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), accusing the saffron party of “igniting conflicts”.

He is scheduled to address a roadshow each on Saturday and Sunday as well in the west Delhi area, which will vote on June 23 in a bypoll necessitated after the earlier incumbent, AAP’s Raghav Chadha resigned after being nominated to the Rajya Sabha.

“If you want an MLA who is interested in rabble-rousing, press the lotus symbol [referring to the BJP’s symbol],” Kejriwal said in Karol Bagh’s WEA area, which falls in the Rajinder Nagar constituency.

In 2020, the AAP’s Chadha beat BJP’s candidate RP Singh by over 20,000 votes.

“Don’t fall for the BJP. They do not know anything other than igniting conflicts. Wherever BJP has won, the people are perturbed. BJP leaders keep fighting 24 hours. I don’t know how to fight, I only know how to work,” Kejriwal said.

He asked people to make sure the AAP, which won the last two assembly elections — in 2015 and 2020 — from Rajinder Nagar, wins with double the margin they did last time.

The BJP and Congress have both fielded former councillors — Rajesh Bhatia and Prem Lata respectively. Votes will be counted on June 26.

Delhi BJP spokesperson Praveen Shankar Kapoor contended that the AAP is on a very “weak footing” in Rajinder Nagar.

“The people of Delhi know very well that the AAP is an anarchic party. Citizens of Delhi have seen that it’s the BJP that despite being in the opposition [in the state] has contributed more towards Delhi’s development through the central government,” Kapoor said.

Residents said the water crisis, a parking shortage, damaged internal roads and a lack of sanitation were among the key problems affecting the west Delhi area.

The constituency is split into pockets of lower and upper middle-class people, affluent avenues, slum clusters and villages.

The result of the bypoll will not affect the power equation in the Delhi assembly where the AAP holds a comfortable majority with 62 seats of the total 70.

However, experts believe that the since the polls are coming within a month of the unification of the municipal corporations, the result may help gauge the public mood.

The state election commission is giving final touches to the preparations for the by-election scheduled for June 23. A total of 164,698 electors are expected to cast their votes to elect the new legislator from among the 14 candidates in the fray.

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  • ABOUT THE AUTHOR

    Alok K N Mishra is a journalist with the Hindustan Times, New Delhi. He writes on governance, policy and politics. He is an ardent follower of politics and is fascinated about making politics work better for the middle-class and the poor. He loves to discuss and predict the national political behaviour. Before shifting to Delhi, he covered political instability, governance, and misgovernance besides Maoists insurgency in Jharkhand for almost half a decade. He started out in 2010 as a city reporter with Times of India, Patna.

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