All eyes are on Delhi as polling for 70-member assembly elections started early this morning. This is the first time in Delhi that there is a triangular contest in existence. While Sheila Dixit would hope for a repeat of her 3-time chief-ministerial candidature, BJP would rely on the Modi wave which would in turn help them get back to power in the National arena. On the other hand, there is AAP which has done its homework and is pinning hopes on and the youth of the city and the extra 4.05 lakhs of the new voters making it an over 1 Crore voters in Delhi.
The voting began at 8 AM at over 11,000 polling stations out of which 630 have been identified as critical and hyper critical. A total of 1.19 crore voters are eligible to exercise their franchise, out of which 66.11 lakh are men and 53.20 lakh are women. The number of first time voters is 4.05 lakh. A total of 810 candidates are in the fray in the three-cornered contest between Congress, BJP and AAP. While BJP has fielded candidates in 66 constituencies Congress and AAP are contesting from all 70 Seates.
If Congress retains the state, it could cramp the march of a Narendra Modi-led BJP. If BJP wins, it will gain significant momentum for the 2014 Lok Sabha election. And if AAP’s magic works, it will not just be the most spectacular debut by a newcomer after NTR in Andhra Pradesh, it will also announce the
arrival of a new political force in India.
Mr Kejriwal’s nine-month old party constitutes an army of volunteers who in recent weeks have trudged through the city’s poorest neighborhoods to tap the deep vein of dissatisfaction that has gripped Delhi residents, particularly over corruption and the soaring cost of living.
At 76, Sheila Dikshit, the chief minister of Delhi, and her Congress party are seeking a fourth consecutive term in power. Mrs Dikshit’s main rival, the BJP’s Harsh Vardhan, is a 58-year-old surgeon and former Health Minister hoping to re-establish his party in the saddle after 15 long years.
The three parties would get a chance to take some rest for 4 days and sense a sigh of relief for whatever ground work they have done to influence the voters. The final poll results would be announced on December 8 and we hope Delhi result would mark the beginning of change in Indian