Delhi Chooses Brand Modi Over Local Candidates, BJP Sweeps 7 Seats
"2020 mein Kejriwal ki party ko jitayenge lekin isbar toh vote Modiji ko denge." (Will make AAP win in 2020 Assembly elections but this time will vote for the BJP.)
Exactly what a Delhi voter had told me while I was covering the Lok Sabha elections in the national capital. The BJP won all seven seats in Delhi for the second time. Did the Modi wave take a precedence over local issues? In East Delhi, AAP's most promising candidate Atishi, credited for enormous work in the educational sector, lost to political debutant and BJP's star candidate Gautam Gambhir.
So does the Delhi voter choose differently when it comes to Assembly elections and the national elections?
In 2013, Delhi gave a fractured mandate between the BJP and the AAP with the latter going on to form a govt with the help of Congress. But in 2014, the BJP swept the seven Lok Sabha seats. And again in 2015, AAP won 67 out of the 70 seats. So it definitely cannot be conclusively said if the massive win by the BJP today will have a bearing on the 2020 elections.
Surprisingly, the Congress, that ended up at the third spot in the last Lok Sabha elections and came third in all the seven seats, has bounced back to the second place in at least five seats. However, the performance of AAP in the state has been dismal, despite being the ruling party in the capital for four years. The possible reason could be that even the anti-BJP voter chose a party that could form the govt at the national level.
Now coming to the AAP-Congress alliance, would that have benefited either of the parties?
BJP in all seven seats has been leading with votes higher than that of AAP and Congress combined. Which also means, that Kejriwal's claim of losing the seven seats because of a shift in Muslim votes to Congress right before the polls also doesn't hold true.