Since the announcement of Delhi elections participant political parties fasten their seat belt to ride over an aggressive election campaign. Every political party is trying to grab each possible opportunity to humiliate the other one. The two major contestants are Aam Aadmi Party, which currently is ruling Delhi and another one is Bharatiya Janta Party, which is ruling at Centre. Congress in this election is somewhere in the back foot. We will try to give you some basic information about this election.
Delhi is a Union Territory with a Legislative Assembly the other two are Puducherry and Jammu and Kashmir. This means here state government doesn’t enjoy complete autonomy as in the case of a state. Here some subjects are kept in hand of the union government, like law and order, which otherwise is a state subject. But many other subjects are left to the state assembly to legislate upon. For this purpose, Delhi has a Legislative Assembly with a strength of 70 seats on which elections are going to be held on the 8th of January.
Some key highlights
The election was announced on the 6th of January. The last date for filing nomination was 21st January, to scrutinize the nomination date was 22nd January. After that 2 days were allotted participants, if they wanted to withdraw, i.e. 24th January was assigned as the last date of withdrawal of nomination. Polling day is the 8th of February and the result will be declared on the11th of February.
Players of the election- To contest this election major parties fielded their 70 contestants. Aam Aadmi Party declared the names of all 70 Candidates, here BJP fielded only 67 contestants from its party one from ally Lok Shakti party and 2 from ally Janta Dal-United. UPA fielded 70 contestants among which 66 are from INC, whereas the other 4 are from RJD. Bahujan Samaj Party is also fighting on all 70 seats. There are as many as 388 independent candidates also. The Chief minister face of Aam Aadami Party is Mr. Arvind Kejriwal itself, whereas other parties including BJP have not declared any Chief minister face yet.
What opinion polls are telling?
An opinion poll conducted by ABP news shown seat distribution in a manner like AAP- 59 seats, BJP- 8 seats, INC- 3 seats, Others- 0. Another Poll conducted by INAS-Cvoter shows a range, AAP will win 54-64 seats, BJP is going to capture 3-13 seats and Congress might have 0-6 seats. And many other polls are there but results are more or less the same in every poll. One thing is very clear form every poll that tug of war for the power is mainly between AAP and BJP, which is also evident in their aggressive campaign in which all other parties are lagging behind.
Strategies for campaign
For both BJP and AAP, this election is very important as AAP will lose the epicenter of its political power if they lose this election, whereas BJP recently face defeat in many states after general elections, so it also needs to win to save its image. But the methodologies adopted by both in campaigning are quite different. AAP is asking for votes on the work it did in the past 5 years, for this AAP is resorting to Social media, ads are launched on youtube, Facebook, Instagram. Also one can see banners of all over which enlists the work done by Kejriwal. Also, Mr. Kejriwal promised for further extension of many populist schemes like free electricity, free water, free bus service and so on. On the other hand, BJP is trying to consolidate its voter on the feeling of nationalism and communal lines, some took it to the extent of comparing BJP with INDIA and other parties with Pakistan, also BJP is trying to use Shaheen Bagh as a trump card in its Election campaign. BJP is also using social media very aggressively. This strategy of BJP is somewhere denting the edge which AAP had till now. No other party is doing Election campaign much as somewhere they also know the upcoming result.
Role of Election Commission
Model Code of conduct is active in Delhi since the announcement of the election. This gives EC immense power to regulate the behavior of political parties and campaigners. EC used its power by banning Kapil Mishra for 48 hours after he breached the Model code of conduct. MCC has eight provisions dealing with general conduct, meetings, processions, polling day, polling booths, observers, the party in power, and election manifestos. If one does not follow the guidelines of EC on these 8 subjects, then he/she will be liable to punishment set by EC accordingly. This time people are criticizing EC very much and labeling it as a toothless tiger. Such criticism came after multiple occasions on which many leaders breached MCC during the campaign. Here EC should follow the mandate given to it in Article 324 of the Indian Constitution to hold free and fair elections. Also as a citizen, you should know the provisions of MCC, report its breach, If found anywhere, to EC on its C-vigil app.