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Will it be BJP or INDIA? Delhi to vote on Saturday in 6th phase

Source: PTI   -  Edited By: Senjo M R
May 24, 2024 18:14 IST
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Amid the prevailing fierce summer heat, the national capital is all set for polling on Saturday after a record two-month long campaigning, with the Bharatiya Janata Party and the Indian National Developmental Inclusive Alliance or INDIA bloc partners pitted in a direct, one-on-one contest in all the seven Lok Sabha constituencies.

IMAGE: Polling officials leave after collecting the electronic voting machines and other election materials on the eve of the sixth phase of Lok Sabha polls, at Gol Market in New Delhi, May 24, 2024. Photograph: ANI Photo

The INDIA bloc partners have reached a pre-poll understanding for the elections in Delhi.


While the Aam Aadmi Party is contesting on four seats, the Congress has fielded candidates for the remaining three seats.

This is the first Lok Sabha election in which the AAP and the Congress have fielded joint candidates against the BJP, posing a challenge to the party ruling the Centre.

A total of 1.52 crore voters, including 82 lakh male and 69 lakh female voters as well as 1,228 third gender, are eligible to cast their votes at more than 13,000 polling booths in 2,627 places across the seven seats.

Voting will start from 7 am with special arrangements at the polling booths to help the voters exercise their franchise amid scorching heat.

The weather department has sounded a yellow alert on the polling day with maximum temperature expected around 44 degrees Celsius.

Over 2.52 lakh first-time voters will cast their maiden votes in the elections in the city.

The electoral battle in Delhi had its fair share of twists and turns with the BJP dropping its six out of seven sitting MPs replacing them with freshers and the Indian National Developmental Inclusive Alliance constituents entering into a seat-sharing agreement.

The AAP faced a major jolt with its national convener and Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal being arrested by the Enforcement Directorate in a money laundering case, hardly a week after announcement of the polls, on March 21.

After 50 days, Kejriwal was granted an interim bail by the Supreme Court to campaign. He came out of Tihar on May 10 energising his party cadre and supporters with a whirlwind tour of the city in the road shows and public meetings in favour of not only the AAP candidates but also its ally, the Congress.

The AAP, has fielded Kuldeep Kumar from East Delhi seat, Mahabal Mishra from West Delhi, Somnath Bharti from New Delhi and Sahi Ram Pahalwan from South Delhi.

The Congress has fielded J P Agarwal from Chandni Chowk, Kanhaiya Kumar from North East Delhi and Udit Raj from North West Delhi constituency.

The BJP candidates include Manoj Tiwari from North East Delhi, the only sitting MP from Delhi fielded by the party again; Ramvir Singh Bidhuri from South Delhi, Bansuri Swaraj from New Delhi, Harsh Deep Malhotra from East Delhi, Yogendra Chandolia from North West Delhi, Praveen Khandelwal from Chandni Chowk and Kamaljeet Sehrawat from West Delhi.

The BJP that won all the seven seats in Delhi in 2014 and 2019 with huge margins is gearing up for a clean sweep third time in a row.

"People of Delhi have immense trust in Prime Minister Narendra Modi's vision of 'Viksit Bharat' and the BJP is going to win back all the seven seats with even bigger margins as compared to 2019," said Delhi BJP president Virendra Sachdeva.

Kejriwal has also repeatedly asserted that the BJP will be out of power after results of the Lok Sabha polls are declared on June 4, and the INDIA bloc candidates will win all the seven seats in Delhi.

West Delhi constituency with 25.87 lakh votes is the largest Lok Sabha constituency in the national capital while the New Delhi constituency with 15.25 lakh is the smallest. North West Delhi constituency is the only reserved seat among the seven.

Several dignitaries and eminent personalities including President of India Droupadi Murmu, Congress leaders Sonia Gandhi and Rahul Gandhi, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and Union minister Hardeep Singh Puri are also voters of the city.

A massive security apparatus has been put in place with 60,000 personnel on the ground to ensure peaceful, free and fair polls, Delhi police officials said.

In view of the security needs, 51 companies of paramilitary forces and 13,500 home guards from Uttarakhand, Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh, and drones and CCTV cameras, will also strengthen the arrangements.

Around 33,000 police and para military personnel will be deputed at the polling centres including 429 sensitive ones, said a senior Delhi police officer.

With 13,637 and four auxiliary -- including 2,891 critical -- polling stations in Delhi, 70 pink booths will also be set up, which will be handled by women officials only. Along with this, 70 model polling booths will be set up, they said.

Delhi CEO P Krishnamurthy has said based on the directives from the Election Commission and the IMD forecast of an intense heat wave, comprehensive measures have been implemented to address the expected high temperatures of 44 to 45 degrees Celsius.

"Our preparations are complete. Shaded areas will be established at all polling stations, with fully covered waiting zones equipped with coolers and fans to ensure voter comfort. We have ensured the availability of drinking water, toilets, ramps, and wheelchairs at every polling station under the Assured

Minimum Facility Policy so that no voter faces any inconvenience," he said.

The national capital witnessed intense campaigning for Lok Sabha polls with the Prime Minister seeking vote for the BJP and its candidates in his two poll rallies.

Star campaigners of the BJP including party chief J P Nadda, Union ministers Amit Shah, Rajnath Singh, Nitin Gadkari and Piyush Goyal among others; chief ministers of party-ruled states including Yogi Aditya Nath of UP, Himanta Biswa Sarma of Assam, Pushkar Singh Dhami of Uttarakhand, Pramod Sawant of Goa and Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister Devendra Fadanavis among others too campaigned for the party candidates.

Congress leader Rahul Gandhi held three public meetings for the party candidates. Besides, Kejriwal and his wife Sunita Kejriwal, Punjab Chief Minister Bhagwant Mann and Delhi government ministers Atishi, Saurabh Bharadwaj, Gopal Rai, Kailash Gahlot also campaigned for the AAP candidates.

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Source: PTI  -  Edited By: Senjo M R© Copyright 2024 PTI. All rights reserved. Republication or redistribution of PTI content, including by framing or similar means, is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent.
India Votes 2024

India Votes 2024